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View Results: Should I learn to wheelie?
Yes, it is a vital skill and you'd be a fool not to. 38 20.32%
Yeah, you might as well, it could be handy someday. 51 27.27%
Yeah, Chicks dig it. 42 22.46%
Yes, but only after you've gotten good at doing it in the car. 16 8.56%
No, it is not really useful. 14 7.49%
No, it is dumb and dangerous (just like all the best fireworks) 8 4.28%
No, it is the first step towards The Darkside. 5 2.67%
You should sell the motorcycle and all other worldly goods to become a Ugandan prairie dog hunter. 13 6.95%
Voters: 187. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 10-23-2013, 06:46 PM   #1
Hesaid OP
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Should I learn to wheelie?

Pretty much what the title says.

I'll start by saying that I have no desire to perform any wheelies (again. I did one once, the story is buried somewhere in "Faceplants", we needn't look it up). In fact, I consider the tendency of the DR (in stock form) to not wheelie on throttle alone to be a plus. However, I've heard it said that there are times when lifting the front wheel is a good idea, or even a necessity, and I can certainly see where that might be the case. Most of these scenarios would be off road, which isn't where we spend most of our time. Gnarly single track isn't our style. But even Forest Service roads can get rough unexpectedly due to time and weather.

So, what say you? Is this a vital skill? Will it help me overall, being as it's another facet of the bike's abilities/handling that's I'd be familiar with? Is it just an open door to the world of hooliganism?

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Old 10-23-2013, 06:50 PM   #2
gearheadE30
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Maybe I'm a minority, but I can't pull a wheelie on the road. There's just some mental block there that I've never been able to get past. Off road, though, I've never had a problem getting it up when I need to.....

Something about soft ground I guess. That said, off road, it is definitely good to know how to lift the wheel at a moment's notice.
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Old 10-23-2013, 07:10 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hesaid View Post
Pretty much what the title says.

I'll start by saying that I have no desire to perform any wheelies (again. I did one once, the story is buried somewhere in "Faceplants", we needn't look it up). In fact, I consider the tendency of the DR (in stock form) to not wheelie on throttle alone to be a plus. However, I've heard it said that there are times when lifting the front wheel is a good idea, or even a necessity, and I can certainly see where that might be the case. Most of these scenarios would be off road, which isn't where we spend most of our time. Gnarly single track isn't our style. But even Forest Service roads can get rough unexpectedly due to time and weather.

So, what say you? Is this a vital skill? Will it help me overall, being as it's another facet of the bike's abilities/handling that's I'd be familiar with? Is it just an open door to the world of hooliganism?

MV
Based on what you've said, I'd say no.


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Old 10-23-2013, 07:34 PM   #4
xymotic
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I would say lifting a wheel and a wheelie are two different things.

I wheelie a lot, because it's addictive and fun as hell. It's also a TERRIBLE idea with very few redeeming qualities (outside of trials type riding) and a lot of risk, esp to insurance premiums


That being said, it's actually a lot harder to loft the wheel on dirt, and knowing how to compress the forks and change the bike's stance is most definitely a valuable skill, and lofting the front makes when you need to makes riding a lot better/safer.
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Old 10-24-2013, 05:41 AM   #5
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Very stupid poll.
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Old 10-24-2013, 05:56 AM   #6
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certainly a good skill to know how to handle a wheelie, I have found my front wheel in the air more than once when not planned
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Old 10-24-2013, 05:57 AM   #7
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what's wrong with the Darkside ?
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Old 10-24-2013, 09:57 AM   #8
gravityisnotmyfriend
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xymotic View Post

I wheelie a lot, because it's addictive and fun as hell.
Pretty much my position exactly! My KTM 620 will wheelie in 1st 2nd and 3rd just by rolling on the throttle. I like 3rd gear wheelies best - higher speed means more stability. It will wheelie in 4th, but it takes a pretty good yank. Compressing the front end helps too.


Quote:
Originally Posted by xymotic View Post

It's also a TERRIBLE idea with very few redeeming qualities (outside of trials type riding) and a lot of risk, esp to insurance premiums

I gotta agree here too. It hasn't bitten me yet, but I fear it's only a matter of time if I keep pushing it. I'd really like to get up to a full balance wheelie, but that's when I gotta ask... why? From a pure cost/benefit analysis, I'd be gaining nothing and risking a ton. But, what can I say? If I wanted to completely eliminate risk, I'd be driving a car.
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Old 10-24-2013, 10:15 AM   #9
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Its fun to just coast down a country road for a half mile with the wheel sky high
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Old 10-24-2013, 11:05 AM   #10
LittleRedToyota
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being able to loft the front and place it where you want it is a vital skill for technical trail riding. you aren't getting over any decent sized logs, rocks, etc. without being able to do it.

you are also eventually going to bury your front in some mudhole or rut and superman over the bars if you can't do it.

comes in handy on the street once in awhile, too...for getting the front over potholes, etc. (though you can usually just go around them or just ride through them and take the hit instead if you want.)

being able to ride wheelies for long distances is not really useful in and of itself. however, the balance, throttle control, clutch control, rear brake control, etc. involved is very useful for all kinds of riding. so, while i would not say it is a very useful skill in and of itself, it certainly does hone some basics that can save your ass someday.
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Old 10-24-2013, 05:58 AM   #11
Handy
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Loud wheelies save lives...
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Old 10-24-2013, 09:24 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Hesaid View Post
Pretty much what the title says.

In fact, I consider the tendency of the DR (in stock form) to not wheelie on throttle alone to be a plus.
If you twist the throttle it will wheelie in stock form..

But if you own a DR and have not found that out yet you might want to leave the front tire on the ground..
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Old 10-24-2013, 09:34 AM   #13
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The three categories of wheelies:

1) Unweighting or lifting the front wheel. It's quick, not very aggressive, and very useful. The front wheel barely comes off the ground, but it's useful for getting over logs and the like. It's not particularly fun, and can be done with a quick weight shift and a little throttle on almost any bike.

2) Sustained power wheelies. You've got the front wheel decidedly off the ground, but still a ways from the balance point. You're holding it up by being at full throttle, or close to it. This is very useful for getting through water without getting soaked or endo-ing. It's also really fun on a bike with the balls to hold one for a while.

3) Balance wheelies. These are harder, and completely useless. They are stunting. They are riskier to do than a power wheelie, but can be done at lower speeds, since you have to accelerate hard to hold a power wheelie. I can't really do these very well yet, but I keep messing around because it's a fun thing to try and get. I only do this on my dirt bike, because I feel like looping it is not unlikely.
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Old 10-24-2013, 04:20 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Auto-X Fil View Post
The three categories of wheelies:

1) Unweighting or lifting the front wheel. It's quick, not very aggressive, and very useful. The front wheel barely comes off the ground, but it's useful for getting over logs and the like. It's not particularly fun, and can be done with a quick weight shift and a little throttle on almost any bike.

2) Sustained power wheelies. You've got the front wheel decidedly off the ground, but still a ways from the balance point. You're holding it up by being at full throttle, or close to it. This is very useful for getting through water without getting soaked or endo-ing. It's also really fun on a bike with the balls to hold one for a while.

3) Balance wheelies. These are harder, and completely useless. They are stunting. They are riskier to do than a power wheelie, but can be done at lower speeds, since you have to accelerate hard to hold a power wheelie. I can't really do these very well yet, but I keep messing around because it's a fun thing to try and get. I only do this on my dirt bike, because I feel like looping it is not unlikely.
Help me out here I tried yesterday and failed to wheelie my Wee Strom. It's got crash bars - skid plate - hand guards and didn't cost too much so my only concern is my health because at middle age stuff doesn't heal up like it used to.

Having found a mostly hidden slab where a big box store was torn down by my house, I was practicing the skills Off Road Fanatic has on U-tube.

Figure 8's -then one handed figure 8's -then standing figure 8's - mostly failed at standing 1 handed standing figure 8's - didnt even try knees on the seat or side saddle stuff.
Emergency stops all good - lock up back tire -squeeze front hard while leaning back.

Could not get the Wee to do a roll on throttle wheelie - takes off fast but no wheelie even dumping clutch and wide open throttle in first gear.

Tried rolling start - shift to second pull in clutch - rev and drop clutch - front jumped but just compresseed back suspension still no wheelie.
On 4th try chain made a bad sound so I went home.

Am I not leaning back enough ? Not pulling up on the bars ? not reving it enough ? not dumping the clutch hard enough ?

Help me out here I can't afford a Ducati because apparently that's what they we built for as anybody on one pulls a wheelie ever few miles around here.
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Old 10-24-2013, 05:43 PM   #15
xymotic
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Help me out here I tried yesterday and failed to wheelie my Wee Strom. It's got crash bars - skid plate - hand guards and didn't cost too much so my only concern is my health because at middle age stuff doesn't heal up like it used to.

Having found a mostly hidden slab where a big box store was torn down by my house, I was practicing the skills Off Road Fanatic has on U-tube.

Figure 8's -then one handed figure 8's -then standing figure 8's - mostly failed at standing 1 handed standing figure 8's - didnt even try knees on the seat or side saddle stuff.
Emergency stops all good - lock up back tire -squeeze front hard while leaning back.

Could not get the Wee to do a roll on throttle wheelie - takes off fast but no wheelie even dumping clutch and wide open throttle in first gear.

Tried rolling start - shift to second pull in clutch - rev and drop clutch - front jumped but just compresseed back suspension still no wheelie.
On 4th try chain made a bad sound so I went home.

Am I not leaning back enough ? Not pulling up on the bars ? not reving it enough ? not dumping the clutch hard enough ?

Help me out here I can't afford a Ducati because apparently that's what they we built for as anybody on one pulls a wheelie ever few miles around here.
I don't have a wee, but I find it hard to believe it couldn't wheelie WITHOUT dropping the clutch. My f650 certainly could. At the mid-to-top of 2nd gear, give it a bit of front brake til the nose compresses and you get back down into the powerband rev wise, you let off the front brake the forks will push the nose up and you just roll on the power.

You may have to shift your weight back and give it a tug but I wouldn't recommend that til you know how to predict what the bike will do.

It's far easier to learn on long straight steep uphill grades too.
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