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TRAVEL Hints and Tips Post your TIPS to travellers - all the interesting little tidbits you learned on the road about packing, where to get stuff, and how to cope with problems. Please make sure the subject describes the tip clearly!
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  #31  
Old 16 May 2011
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I don't have particulary small hands, but I can't even get all four fingers on my brake! My first finger touches the joint of the brake lever.
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  #32  
Old 18 May 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by *Touring Ted* View Post
Although, I have to add... If you can't lock up your wheels with two fingers, you've either got shit brakes or arthritus !

One you can do something about....
My point was more about technique then ability though it depends which bike and what brakes you have, however on all newer bikes I would have to agree. Even 1 finger is enough... but which finger?
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  #33  
Old 18 May 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TurboCharger View Post
My point was more about technique then ability though it depends which bike and what brakes you have, however on all newer bikes I would have to agree. Even 1 finger is enough... but which finger?
As tasty as that bait is, I've already eaten.. hahahaha
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  #34  
Old 11 Jun 2011
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10x very helpful
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  #35  
Old 28 Apr 2012
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A bit late maybe, but here my two cents:

My wife and I travel on two Africa Twins, not the lightest I know...
We are roughly equal considering length etc, so we have the bikes in a roughly similar setup.
Maybe this is not perfect for the person riding his/her bike normally, but it does make it very easy to swap bikes when you need to.
e.g. when we were in Bolivia, playing in the mud for a few days above 4000 meters altitude, Mirjams bike ran on one cylinder. We swapped so I had this issue to fight with, and Mirjam drove my bike through the mud for 3 days. I think it is very nice when the other bike feels natural to you when you have to drive it!

maybe something to consider.
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  #36  
Old 20 Sep 2013
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Regarding the 2 verses 4 finger technic can I suggest that as a starting point,
A) losen brake and clutch lever at clamps and rotate out of the way(facing down )
B)Place hands on grips and allow your hands to to hang in a natural fashion, i.e. don't hold your fingers up.
C)Look at the angle of your hands are at and rotate brake and clutch back to this position.
This is the optimum position wether you have a disability or not and will provide ample leverage for 2 finger braking even under sustained hard braking, and will substancialy reduce fatige on hands and wrists.
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  #37  
Old 26 Sep 2013
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Hanlebar Set Up

Hi All

I've been reading around on setting up the handlebars but am none the wiser.

Just come back from a 3 week trip to Portugal and despite my having set up the bike for me as suggested by Ted, my right hand wrist hurt badly after about two day's riding. And from two days later my right shoulder and neck got really cramped up and painful. But I don't feel like my hand is using the throttle at the wrong angle...? - Probably cos I'm used to it....

Its a 2004 F650 GS with standard handle bars. I would consider buying another bar, if it helps. But my problem is that I wouldn't know what to go for, without test riding each for two days...?

So what angle should my hand/wrist/arm/shoulder be at? Can anyone give a detailed description? How should everything be set up?
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  #38  
Old 26 Sep 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luckyluke84 View Post
Hi All

I've been reading around on setting up the handlebars but am none the wiser.

Just come back from a 3 week trip to Portugal and despite my having set up the bike for me as suggested by Ted, my right hand wrist hurt badly after about two day's riding. And from two days later my right shoulder and neck got really cramped up and painful. But I don't feel like my hand is using the throttle at the wrong angle...? - Probably cos I'm used to it....

Its a 2004 F650 GS with standard handle bars. I would consider buying another bar, if it helps. But my problem is that I wouldn't know what to go for, without test riding each for two days...?

So what angle should my hand/wrist/arm/shoulder be at? Can anyone give a detailed description? How should everything be set up?
For me, it comes down to the grip on the throttle; we all use the brakes now and again but we are turning the throttle continuously.
I try to vary my wrist position on the throttle grip while riding for hours - I guess I change it, subconsciously basically, while stopping temporarily at lights etc.

For the general muscle cramp, maybe you are gripping the throttle too tight?
IMO, some folks get such cramps because of cold air circulating around their body after vortexing off the screen.

The general idea regarding the controls on both ends of the bars is that if your fingers are extended straight out as a "natural" extension of your lower arm then the brake/clutch levers should lie in that natural-pointing direction.
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  #39  
Old 26 Sep 2013
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For me, I find using a throttle rocker to be extremely helpful. Gripping the bars too tight can cause pain, and with the rocker there can be long stretches where the palm of my hand is doing most of the work, with my grip actually very loose. It's surprising just how little I actually grip the bars on long trips.

Just for completeness, I ride an F800GS with Rox Risers fitted. I've heard Grant talk about bike setup. One thing that rang true was when he said to close your eyes and hold your hands out as if holding the bars - this is the position in which you should ride. With my setup, this is what I've got!
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  #40  
Old 26 Sep 2013
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The easiest thing you can try is rolling the bars back.

I wear a kidney belt on longer trips. Helps with posture and gives protection. Mines an alpinestars Orion..
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