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Old 06-28-2012, 02:02 PM   #1
Lobster OP
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I think I need some technique help...950 ADV in the gravel

I've been the proud owner of a 2006 950 ADV I bought last fall from an inmate here. Life is busy, but I've still managed about 1000 miles on it so far.

All my old bikes (save the dirt bikes, of course) were totally pavement only rides. Now I have this monster and love screaming around all the gravel roads here in Militiagan. But it is these gravel roads which also scare me.

Most of these roads are not dirt...far from it. They are hard packed gravel with lots of little stones or "marbles" on top. I can't help but feel like the front is going to simply slide out from underneath me if I give the bike any kind of lean in a turn...scares the hell out of me. A wiggly rear end I can handle...(pun intended! )

So, what's the best technique for cornering on gravel? I'll be up at CJs later this summer and hopefully can do some learning there as well.

PS I still have the stock Scorpion up front...which I assume is likely not helping...so any recommendations for a new front would be great. Thanks!
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Old 06-28-2012, 02:30 PM   #2
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Where you at in MI? I'm gonna be there the entire month of July with my 06 950. Maybe we can tackle them together? I'm comfortable in sand and I can't imagine gravel being much different. Let me know.
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Old 06-28-2012, 02:38 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Shunka View Post
I'm comfortable in sand and I can't imagine gravel being much different.
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Old 06-28-2012, 02:45 PM   #4
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Enlighten me then.

In my experience it's all about relaxing and letting the bike do what it wants. You have to be comfortable off pavement with letting the bike move and slide a bit. Till you accept that you are making things hard on yourself.

There are lots of gravel on hard pack here in socal but I don't think that is the type of surface he is talking about having grown up there.

http://www.openroadjourney.com/articles/110_2.asp

Link says it better than I can.

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Old 06-28-2012, 03:12 PM   #5
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Gravel Technique

There's a lot to be said for front tire choice when riding in gravel. Some tread patterns just don't work worth a damn, at which point you need some skill to make up for it.

Front tires like Kenda Big Block, Continental TKC/Twinduro, Dunlop D606, Pirelli Scorpion Rally, seem to work better than the Pirelli Scorpion AT's that come on the bikes stock. YMMV

suspension setup rewards in this case as well...
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Old 06-28-2012, 03:14 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Lobster View Post
...PS I still have the stock Scorpion up front...which I assume is likely not helping...so any recommendations for a new front would be great. Thanks!
I guess Swedish gravel roads may be similar to those in Michigan, at least climate is similar.
Yes, stock Scorpion is a horrible gravel tire.
Very good is Pirelli Scorpion Rally (which can be used also for riding tarmc)
Somewhat worse than the "Rally" but still better than stock are Michelin T63, Continental TKC80 and Metzler Karoo (without "T"). Needless to say, these three are somewhat better (just somewhat though) than "Rally" on tarmac.
Go get a proper gravel compromize tire and you'll have a much better time racing those roads! but still fun on tarmac.
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Old 06-28-2012, 03:20 PM   #7
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Dry gravel marbles, tires won't make a difference. Try going out in a lite rain and it will be a different world. Dry is quite fun and doable at a good pace but it's all about body position/footpeg pressure. Try some wet stuff, get the feel and progress from there.
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Old 06-28-2012, 03:26 PM   #8
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The technique for riding on loose stuff is totally different than pavement riding. On pavement you transfer your weight to the inside to initiate a turn. On gravel you do the opposite. Put our weight to the outside and keep your body positioned perpendicular to the ground by moving the bike under your body and counter weighting it to keep it balanced.

Watch what not to do.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=45hRTsXZ5yM


Ewen drops his inside shoulder and the bike takes his lead driving him into the ground.


Then watch the next few minutes as they move their weight to the outside again.



Have Fun?


Where in Michigan?


I still have a Lake House outside Port Hope.


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Old 06-28-2012, 03:27 PM   #9
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Dry gravel marbles, tires won't make a difference....
?????
Why then does the stock feels like being on ice on dry gravel while the Scorpion Rally almost feels like braking on tarmac?
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Old 06-28-2012, 03:41 PM   #10
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?????
Why then does the stock feels like being on ice on dry gravel while the Scorpion Rally almost feels like braking on tarmac?
I agree. Tires help a lot. I put a Heidenau K60 Scout on the front and it made a world of difference over the stocker for me. MEFO out back and its a blast sliding around the hard pack out here With the stockers on I was uneasy just like the OP.
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Old 06-28-2012, 03:54 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Whip View Post
On pavement you transfer your weight to the inside to initiate a turn. [/B]
The body does nothing to initiate a turn...it should just follow what your countersteering does, which is leaning towards the inside of a turn. The turn is always initiated by countersteering....no weight on pegs or any other myths....there's a nice video on youtube that clears it up pretty nicely....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?nomobile=1&v=HWH_QiXw5n4

on loose stuff first thing you gotta do is look ahead for thicker gravel, plan your lines with as much less leaning as possible. You can use your momentum to take a turn with your brakes or use your throttle to place your tail where you want it to be....for starters I'd go easy not only in terms of speed but also in terms of location. Try practicing in wider roads with speeds that you feel comfortable, then start experimenting with brakes and throttle. See how she behaves and you're already at the next level...

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Old 06-28-2012, 04:31 PM   #12
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put a tyre on like a 606 that will help for a start,and the best all round way on/off road is get all your braking done b4 the corner then use the power around the corner,use this in sand,mud loose gravel etc etc

only my 2 cents worth
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Old 06-28-2012, 04:50 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Deviant666 View Post
The body does nothing to initiate a turn...it should just follow what your countersteering does, which is leaning towards the inside of a turn. The turn is always initiated by countersteering....no weight on pegs or any other myths....there's a nice video on youtube that clears it up pretty nicely....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?nomobile=1&v=HWH_QiXw5n4

on loose stuff first thing you gotta do is look ahead for thicker gravel, plan your lines with as much less leaning as possible. You can use your momentum to take a turn with your brakes or use your throttle to place your tail where you want it to be....for starters I'd go easy not only in terms of speed but also in terms of location. Try practicing in wider roads with speeds that you feel comfortable, then start experimenting with brakes and throttle. See how she behaves and you're already at the next level...


Wow do you even ride off road? There is so much wrong with that first paragraph I don't know where to start..
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Old 06-28-2012, 04:58 PM   #14
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Wow do you even ride off road? There is so much wrong with that first paragraph I don't know where to start..
Read to whom my post was refering to. The guy was talking about street riding not offroad...
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Old 06-28-2012, 04:59 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Whip View Post
The technique for riding on loose stuff is totally different than pavement riding. On pavement you transfer your weight to the inside to initiate a turn. On gravel you do the opposite. Put our weight to the outside and keep your body positioned perpendicular to the ground by moving the bike under your body and counter weighting it to keep it balanced.

Watch what not to do.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=45hRTsXZ5yM


Ewen drops his inside shoulder and the bike takes his lead driving him into the ground.


Then watch the next few minutes as they move their weight to the outside again.



Have Fun?


Where in Michigan?


I still have a Lake House outside Port Hope.



And lock up the rear, break tractin and kick the rear out so ya can steer with the throttle!

That place still need a remodel??
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