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Travellers' questions that don't fit anywhere else This is an opportunity to ask any question, and post any notice you wish that doesn't fit into one of the other sections.
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  #16  
Old 9 Oct 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dash View Post
Braking with all four fingers appears to be good enough for a certain Mr V. Rossi.
Not many pot holes or sand jumps at Laguna Seca though....
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  #17  
Old 9 Oct 2012
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Hi Nath - just posted a query about trail riding schools in Europe and hey presto saw your post... looks just up my street - would you recommend? do you have contacts etc? Please advise! Many thanks. Braddan.
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  #18  
Old 9 Oct 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by *Touring Ted* View Post
Not many pot holes or sand jumps at Laguna Seca though....
I dunno...



(and off-track excursions aside, do you really think that a MotoGP rider stopping a bike from 200mph requires less finesse than you do when braking at urban speeds on a slightly bumpy road?)

As noted above, I will use two fingers in situations where hanging on to the bars/steering is as important as applying the brakes.

However given a relatively smooth surface, I'm still surprised that a few people believe they can brake (or operate the clutch) with more finesse by pulling very hard with two fingers than they can by pulling gently with four. My experience is the exact opposite.

Turns out there is more than one way of riding a motorcycle
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  #19  
Old 9 Oct 2012
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Air Brakes

Quote:
Originally Posted by dash View Post
Braking with all four fingers appears to be good enough for a certain Mr V. Rossi.
Quite right... You have sharp eyes. Number 46 And most other big names use four fingers when they are down in the bubble at the end of a straightway and then pop upright at 200 kph to create an upper body air brake that transfers downforce to the rear wheel. It this and similar situations the fingers are not just for smooth control function.

For most riders the problem with four fingers is the opposing thumb. If you do need to hang on for a bump or whatever the squeeze requires lever movement when it may not be appropriate. In other words holding the bars and moving the levers are two different things.

In beginner classes we have students "cover the levers" with four fingers so if they panic a double squeeze does three things: (1) they can hold on and not fall back (2) their left hand stops power and (3) their right hand stops the bike. For more advanced riders multi-tasking is the next skill level, like smooth front braking AND blipping the throttle at the same time for downshifts. In this example the right hands is doing three things at once: pulling-in and holding the brake lever, rotating the throttle and steering the bike. Hard to do well without multi-tasking fingers.

Coach
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Two fingers for clutch and f-brake-four-fingers-vs-thumb-lo  

Two fingers for clutch and f-brake-two-finger-vs-thumb-lo  

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  #20  
Old 9 Oct 2012
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Originally Posted by Coach View Post
In sum, two fingers gives increased control and more sensitivity but requires some wrench time and learning a new way before heading into traffic.
Just to clarify... increased control of your braking by pulling harder with fewer fingers, or increased control of other things due to having spare fingers to do them with?
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  #21  
Old 9 Oct 2012
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Originally Posted by dash View Post
Just to clarify... increased control of your braking by pulling harder with fewer fingers, or increased control of other things due to having spare fingers to do them with?
Interesting question. It takes us to the type of bike you are riding. Harder pull with two fingers assumes two fingers are nor optimum. You know, brake and clutch cables instead of hydraulic actuation, internal expanding drums instead of disk(s), power assist, etc. Then add-in ABS or not...

There are some systems that require more pressure on the levers. That'sthe bottom line. So if are rider is weak in the hands for some reason then he or she may be forced to use all four-- in some situations.

But where I was going was more about sensitivity. Let's say I am braking and my forks have compressed a bit. Now I need to downshift. Let's assume I need to match input and output shaft speeds in the gearbox for smooth downshifts. That means I have to blip the throttle for each downshift. If I can't slide the brake lever between the first and second joins without changing pressure on the lever, each time I blip the throttle the forks will pogo and effect traction.

I'm sorry, I'm rambling here a bit because I'm on the road and trying to pack-up and clutch-out. So hopefully I started some lines of thought, to start some discussion and to add something to your rider's toolbox of skills. But I gotta go...

The Is NO right way to ride. Just options from that rider, on that bike, on that day.

Yours,
Coach

This was me back in the 60's with four fingers required:
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