12425 - Established June, 2013 - all GRiSO, all the time...
Posts : 19
Join date : 2015-03-11
Age : 37
|Subject: Help a newbie out Tue Apr 28, 2015 9:10 am|| |
Bit of backround before the question:
My GRiSO is my first bike
I've only ridden for one season
The thought of laying it over makes me want to curl into the fetal position
So, riddle me this, whenever I read bike reviews they always talk about "it rides on rails". To me, that statement means the bike is really steady at speed and inspires gobs of confidence in the rider.
Whenever there is the slightest (and I mean slight) bit of wind, my bike feels like it floats beneath me, not wobbles persay, but floats side to side...relatively quickly. Needless to say, the only thing this inspires in me is sphincter puckering terror. I wasn't even riding fast, 60-80km/h.
I've checked the air pressure, checked my torques everything seems copisetic, so why doesn't my bike "ride on rails"? Why aren't I rock solid? I would hate to be crusing on the highway at speed and feel this shit.
Is this just the way it is? Am I doomed to only ride when Harleys do? In warm, dry sunny weather?
Posts : 67
Join date : 2015-03-16
Age : 73
|Subject: Re: Help a newbie out Tue Apr 28, 2015 1:55 pm|| |
All bikes to some degree are affected by wind- headwinds slow one down put more pressure on the rider, side winds affect the stability of the bike causing it to feel like it's moving side to side under you. It's the way it is and as more experience accumulates one gets accustomed to letting the bike do it's thing as it's momentum is affected.
There's lots of information available for how to cope with wind effects. Do some reading on this, apply the info provided as you ride more and eventually it becomes second nature. For sure it's more work but once in a while the wind is to your back and those rides are the best.
Posts : 204
Join date : 2014-09-08
Age : 46
|Subject: Re: Help a newbie out Tue Apr 28, 2015 2:11 pm|| |
Wind takes getting some used to. The first time I experienced it on the highway I thought I was going to die. It doesn't take long to get the hang of wind and now I really kind of enjoy it. Strong wind can make a straight road fun
Aside from that it's my belief that the most important thing we can do with our bikes is to get the suspension properly set up. See if there's a suspension guy in your area that can set it up for you. It really does help to have a specialist (or become one yourself).
Posts : 3965
Join date : 2013-05-29
Age : 59
Posts : 540
Join date : 2014-07-03
|Subject: Re: Help a newbie out Tue Apr 28, 2015 2:48 pm|| |
Interesting, and nothing I can recall experiencing on my GRiSO, and that after two years out on the U.S. tundra of the Quad Cities. Wind -- and high winds -- are a fact of daily life there. I hate wind.
But, I put about 10K miles on mine in those conditions and can't remember that ever being a factor.
Now, when you read this next part, please know that I love my GRiSO ... comma but.
I, too, think it "rides on rails," but I don't view that as any sort of good thing necessarily. Of course, who doesn't want a stable ride ... to a point. But, IMO, as currently configured -- code for "pretty much as delivered" -- my GRiSO is a pig compared to my Norge.
And that machine, especially with a top case, is a tupperware wind queen. Try to keep it from a perpetual lean when riding with a 40-knot 90-degree cross wind. Sucks green eggs. Did that once on a grated bridge over the Mississippi River. My sphincter is still partially fused!
But the Norge is, for all its weight and more, a sweet thing in the twisties. Rode it today for the first time in months and was reminded of what joy it is. Falls into turns like a ballroom goddess and take pressure to bring it out. Some people like that sort of thing; others don't; I do.
Could never accuse my GRiSO of that, as it "rides on rails."
Which brings us to Pete & Laker's points.
I very much suspect that your GRiSO (and mine) will be more tractable beasts when we go to the disciplined trouble (and possible expense) of getting the suspensions right. My rear shock has been tweaked and thus I no longer feel as if I am unsprung weight, but I need to do more, e.g., get the triple tree settings right. Search and you'll find a bit on that.
I am convinced that if I can ever find the time between my own continued state of disorganization and my sweet wife's "honey-do" list, my GRiSO will be what it can be.
Yours, too, but it'll take work.
Best from the top of Virginia,
|Enzo the baker|
Posts : 194
Join date : 2014-03-25
|Subject: Re: Help a newbie out Tue Apr 28, 2015 5:10 pm|| |
I agree with the others, spend some time with your suspension. You will be rewarded. Secondly wind and motorcycle riding are forever intertwined. The GRiSO does handle like it's on rails but your skill set needs practice to fully appreciate the bike's stability. If I were you once the suspension is sorted I would go out on moderately windy days and practice gently counter steering the GRiSO. Sounds to me that your lack of confidence in your abilities is making you more susceptible to the wind. I'm 66 and I live in Arizona, I've ridden all over the U.S. and the wind is different in every State. Most times the canyons here are windblown with crosswinds and gusts. The GRiSO handles all of this without a hiccup. My now gone BMW 1200 GT, tall, heavy lots of plastic and very fast would sometimes threaten to cross the yellow line when the crosswinds were really bad, but I just pushed a little firmer on the bars and she came back. Lastly I've never seen a motorcycle accident caused specifically by the wind and believe me I've seen plenty of guys go down. Taking out autos and trucks, the four biggest causes of crashes: target fixation, overcorrecting, road debris and just not paying attention.
Posts : 1041
Join date : 2014-01-02
|Subject: Re: Help a newbie out Tue Apr 28, 2015 6:17 pm|| |
For anyone that come to try riding the first time after having somewhat driving experiences first, it's kinda normal to compare to what you already know...
So since you've already experienced driving a car in the wind I'm sure, you'll find it a lot more physical doing it on a motorcycle but actually, everything on a bike is physical anyway.
You will feel the wind on two wheels for sure but you'll learn to deal with it and it will become second nature.
Like others have said, a sorted GRiSO is just plain solid no matter what.
For me at 5.7' and 170lbs, the suspension factory settings are pretty close to what I like and in fact, my 2013 is still stock in that department except for having dropped the fork a little.
Get used to the bike first, then try another one somehow (a friend's maybe) and see what the difference brings you.
Only mess with the suspension once you've put a few miles on the clock so you know where you at in term of riding.
Posts : 556
Join date : 2014-06-21
|Subject: Re: Help a newbie out Wed Apr 29, 2015 6:35 am|| |
I'll just echo the suspension thing - what's your weight? I found the stock settings on the rear shock for the GRiSO much too stiff (I'm a flyweight). Also, what tire pressures are you running?
As shipped, the fork setup in the triple-trees is also considered by many to be more "cruiseresque" than sporty and many people raise the forks in these trees (thus lowering the front of the bike / putting more weight on the front). It might be the wind hits you, pushes you back making the front end even "lighter" and contributes to the vague feeling. If you want to try adjusting the forks definitively
get a friend who's done it before to help (or an actual suspension expert) to avoid making things worse (i.e. bike fall over when you're adjusting, or evil handling that makes things dangerous). Be aware that doing this will cause the bike to handle different, so proceed in small steps. In the meantime, when it happens, lean forward putting more weight on the front and see if it makes it feel better.
Another common thing when stressed (for example, wind hitting you sideways
) is to grip the bars too hard, stiffen up your arms, etc. This can often make things feel worse and in fact handle worse. Next time it happens check to see if you need to loosen up. The GRiSO is a heavy bike and when moving isn't likely to be blown over. Not meaning to offend - I just mention all this because you say this is your first bike - not trying to be condescending or anything. In fact I still often have to remind myself to loosen up when riding.
(And that bad feeling from the wind blast when big trucks pass you in the opposite lane on narrow roads? Well, that never goes away
Posts : 817
Join date : 2014-08-18
Age : 52
|Subject: Re: Help a newbie out Wed Apr 29, 2015 8:43 am|| |
Agree with all that has been said. For me the GRiSO seems more planted than most and I have yet to dabble with the rear suspension settings. I can see how if it has been set up for someone else it could leave you feeling things were not right with the ride.
It is a shame that windy days have made you feel this way? Are you all the way happy on a calm day or do you still have doubts about the handling then as well?
Mindset is a massive thing here as has been said too. Almost to the point where you can create a bad ride if that is your expectancy. Depending on how long you have had the bike and how you are getting to know it definately makes changes to the way that you feel and your comfort on it in different situations. After all, none of us ride without wanting to get some fun out of it........?
Go about it methodically as you have been doing and once you have exhausted that route try some other options. Borrow another bike on a windy day and try that, then reference it back to the GRiSO. Do you have a more experienced friend who you would be willing to let have a small try for some feedback?
Let us know how you get on?
All the best, Ian/Blue.
Posts : 19
Join date : 2014-04-27
|Subject: Re: Help a newbie out Thu Apr 30, 2015 6:31 am|| |
Great tips from everyone. Tire pressure, suspension settings, loose on the grip and squeeze the tank a bit with your knees. She will want to correct herself if you don't death grip or try to lead in the dance. Use light pressure to help keep her stable and let her have her head and I bet you will find you were the weakest link. Slow down if the winds are really getting in your head or pull off for minute to let the nerves calm a bit. Bill's bridge story brings not so fond memories to most folks I'm sure and believing in the dynamics of the bike and keeping calm will get you through. I often ride my new bikes in the wake of dirty air behind big trucks to see how my bike handles it as well as moving my hand/arm around to see on my fair'd bikes how the windscreen is doing it's job, etc. The more you practice the more comfortable you will be as your mind will have been there and done that before, much like hitting a pebble in a tight corner when at first it feels like the tire kicks out many inches, but in reality it barely twitched and yet caused more pucker than should have as it was a new sensation.
Posts : 491
Join date : 2014-04-10
Age : 62
|Subject: Re: Help a newbie out Thu Apr 30, 2015 7:54 am|| |
Where I live or ride its always windy , and I am talking about fierce winds up 90kph+ and with gusts .
There is an area South that has wind mills to harness the wind power .
the winds that come off the mountains and in to the valleys are steady and strong especially in the spring
Many times when I ride there the bike when on a straight road will be on the edge of the tires , looks a little odd as the bike is at cornering lean but going straight ..
What we do in this case is ride straight up sit on the outside edge of the seat with the bike at the lean according to the wind speed .. and just apply enough counter steering to keep her straight down the road. When corners come up its business as usual but you ride with the wind in mind , deliberate focused counter steering works the best for me.
I grew up with windy riding and learned it can be you friend as well as your foe , a 80+ kph tail wind is enjoyable as you can ride visor up and no wind in your face , I have even seen engine temp come up at 100 kph as there is near still air coming at you..of course this can change in a heartbeat as the road turns and changes direction.
Riding a motorcycle puts you in the elements , and that is part of what motorcycling is all about enjoy the wind run with it when you can .
Posts : 461
Join date : 2014-06-13
Age : 67
|Subject: Re: Help a newbie out Thu Apr 30, 2015 9:12 am|| |
Where I grew up we have "Santana" winds. As a kid with a newspaper route on a bicycle, I had to deal with them in the fall. So the wind on a motorcycle is kinda normal for me, though I had an experience just a few months ago that made me cut short a ride. I mounted a handlebar mounted windscreen on my '93 HD FXLR an was on the hwy doing about 85mph. The wind was hitting me from the side and all was normal when a very strong gust came up and almost blew me out of the lane.
Really made me nervous and I had a hard time relaxing my shoulders and loosening my grip on the bars. I found it very fatiguing and decided to head back home, where I removed the windscreen.
As a new rider in the wind, you will need to just get used to it and you will in time. BTW I don't reccomend large handlebar windscreens any longer.
Posts : 1155
Join date : 2015-02-02
Age : 55
|Subject: Re: Help a newbie out Thu Apr 30, 2015 1:26 pm|| |
GrisoGhost79 - My 09 GRiSO was my re entry into riding after a 20 year break, It came with the suspension compression and rebound settings wound up hard and front and rear tyres set at over 40 psi. The first 100 kms were in drizzling rain and I was Pooing myself the whole way. The bike felt like I was riding on a greased road. playing with the settings helped a lot.
Don't be frightened to adjust the suspension, mark the adjusters with a felt tip pen if you like , count turns or clicks, write down what you did, you can always set it back to the original positions this way.
everyone has a different preference, but to get mine to stop feeling like it wanted to skip off the road in bumpy twisties, I've had to back off the front C&R damping fully and wound up the spring force , the rear spring is set stock but rear C&R damping also backed off a lot.
Posts : 19
Join date : 2015-03-11
Age : 37
|Subject: Re: Help a newbie out Fri May 01, 2015 10:28 am|| |
Thank you so much everyone for the replies.
Seems like you're all right, I just need to get used to it. Thank god!
I'll get an expert to look at my suspension and sort it for me because I think the GRiSO comes optimized for two up from the shop.
Posts : 3965
Join date : 2013-05-29
Age : 59
|Subject: Re: Help a newbie out Fri May 01, 2015 11:03 am|| |
Under sprung and over damped at both ends is the order of the day.