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Old 02-08-2014, 08:40 AM   #58
jack of all trades...
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Joined: Dec 2007
Location: Delaware Ohio
Oddometer: 9,240
Originally Posted by tkent02 View Post
You guys are misunderstanding what I said. Most times when braking is required, it's not a "BAM slam on the brakes right now" situation. If you get surprised that often you shouldn't be riding, or even driving. Usually someone changes lanes, someone else slows, or a car is rolling through an intersection, you see sand in a curve ahead, something happens where you decide for a short time whether to slow, or to speed up and steer around it, whatever. You think through the options, if and when you decide braking is neccesary you finger is there already. Other than a car, child or a deer darting out in the road from a hiding place ahead things don't happen all that quickly. Even then a better option may be to steer around, by the time you decide which to do your finger is where you need it to be. We're talking what, a tenth of a second to move your finger?

If your normal ride is to be spring loaded and hair triggered to slam on the brakes, that's a lot worse than being a split second slower to start braking.
Especially on a motorcycle.

I can count the times I've had to do an instantaneous hard stop on one hand, and it was always when I didn't see something coming correctly. Even then, getting the finger to the lever doesn't take but a tenth of the time it takes to get the weight shifted completely forward and to get the full amount of front brake on.

Do you guys all drive around in a car with your foot on the brake at all times?

Open highway, across town, or cruising through the mountains on a dirt road with your left foot hovering over the brake pedal always?

If you actually feel safer then go for it, but sure seems stupid and dangerous to me.
I'm missing the "dangerous" part... I've been riding for about 45 years, starting with trials riding. Covering the front brake a lot of the time has always been near second nature. I just don't see the "danger" in having fingers on the brake to shorten braking action time. Can you explain the "danger"?

It's easy/easier to cover the front brake with two fingers than doing a similar thing in a car, so many do it. I do a lot. One reason on open winding roads in casual riding is that it just works for smooth riding, no excess movement going into and out of a corner since I can throttle with the thumb and other two fingers. Especially in switch backs where there is throttle/brake/throttle/brake. It becomes a bit of a habit that spills over into general riding. Don't always do it, but a lot. Of course there are those times when I spot that idiot squirrel or chipmunk, dog or whatever, that is ready to run into my path too. I'm already set to brake if needed, no reach to lever... I'm there. And I'm betting faster than you are with your "have to reach brake and start weight shift". I'm there and if I brake the automatic conditioned response is the weight shift happening simultaneously. Lots of that in trials and trails.

It also just makes sense for urban/suburban riding. You never know when a door may open or a car nose stick out. So why not cover the brake to be ready to act rather than have to reach, get set, and brake. I'm already set to brake. Sure, I'm watching the kid between cars, or adult for that matter, or the car at the alley. I'm already acting because I see them and already have my fingers on the brake lever. It's not about feeling safe, it's about action when needed. Second nature at this point.

I have another reason though, it helps keep from cramping up that I seem to have happen at times. Extending the fingers on either/both hads helps. Late in the day after several hours I start getting hand cramping.
Ever get lost? You know, that good kind of lost - come to a dirt road intersection and you have no idea where you are or which way to turn? I like when that happens!

Mark - klx678
95 KLX650C w/Vulcan piston bigbore, Now an 09 KLX250S, selling my 90 Zephyr 550

markk53 screwed with this post 02-08-2014 at 08:47 AM
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