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Dragging the engine head on the pavement with an RT12


MoroCycler

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I never thought about doing this, but I´ve done it.

With an Ohlins rear shock and a 190 michelin power.

Here is the picture of the dragged valve cover plastic protector.

 

82293702-S.jpg

 

 

MoroCycler

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All that mans is that you were a) way leaned over and b) close to levering the rear end off the road and hurtin' yourself.

 

It doesn't tell us if you are a good or a bad rider. Not speaking of you personally, but most of the time it's the latter. tongue.gif

 

Be careful.

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No, I´m not trying to show if I am good or bad rider, just that it is possible to happen. Only sharing the experience, not competing.

It was a case where I needed to push the bike to its limits due the circumstances.

 

Yes the rear tyre left the ground for a very small fraction of time, enough to wash a little out, throw some smoke and a little rebound after.

 

I learned:

-BMW does a good job designing and making bikes

-The RT was thought to use a 180 rear

-Once the footpeg is dragging I´m on "yellow" warning.

-Once the footpeg lifts, I´m on "red" warning.

-Once the head drags, I´m on my own!

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That's an excellent perspective! thumbsup.gif

 

I worry that someone seeing a picture like that:

 

1) Thinks it's safe.

 

2) Isn't practicing good body position, which might have avoided it.

 

Glad this ended the way it did!

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bakerzdosen

The hex engine head on my ST had to be replaced when I bought it because it was "borrowed" by the service dept. Someone had done exactly that - dragged their r12 engine head, and needed a repair quick because they were from out of town. They had no protectors on the engine heads (obviously).

 

So, picture that without the protectors, and that's about it.

 

Whoever it was (someone here? smile.gif ) had apparently had to rig some sort of plug up to keep it from leaking just to get it to the dealer.

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What caused the abrasion marks on the top of the guard and on on the plug cover?

 

It is just rain-mud and dust, those are not abrassion marks.

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I done this too on my R1100RS, but my circumstances differed a little.

 

Mosel valley, beautiful day cruising the sweepers, take a right and find a Renault & a VW in my lane waving at two cyclists who were pushing their bikes up a hill in tandem. I swerved to avoid the Renault, tyres ran wide in to water run off that was full of pine needles, I tried to escape and at that moment the lower fairings breifly touched followed quickly by the rocker (which didn't hole through) then followed even quicker by my @rse. frown.gif

 

Relatively cheap repair and much to the astonishment of the assortment of japanese and italian livery I was with, we picked it up and rode off.

clap.gif

Glad yours worked out the way it did, but I still re-trace my actions and continually ask myself if the same happend again could I steer round. It was one of those possible 'freeze' moments.

 

I saw an excellent thread years ago on a stateside forum where a phsycologist defined the thoughts of a rider at these times. Target Fixation and Paranalysis of analysis or something like that.

 

I've experienced it many times and these 'moments' are becoming increasingly less (none for a couple of years now), but I put this down to better riding, age and experience. I also firmly belive this to be cause of many biker offs and I preach this sermon to all my friends who have recently joined the fold. It's all in the mind.

 

I read a snippet too (can't remember where) from a book that was written by maybe an ex-racer, but I learned one valuable thing that has got me out of many a "scrape", no pun intended. I quote. "your abilities are probably a lot less than the bikes, yep you may feel flat out, but if you get into trouble, go on lean it over a tad more, you'll probably make it". I wish I could find the orginal and quote it direct, but remembering that my version of flat out probably is a lot less than the bikes, hence I've have had to lean the machine over more than I'm comfortable with, but it's saved my bacon on many occassions. thumbsup.gif

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What caused the abrasion marks on the top of the guard and on on the plug cover?

 

It is just rain-mud and dust, those are not abrassion marks.

 

Very good question. Seeing is usually believing. I smell a rat and don't believe everything I read.

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I am new to this forum and love it. I ride an R12ooRT, had in the past R1100RT, R1100S and K1200RS.

 

I sense MoroRider’s post is questioned for credibility (unfairly IMHO) and for his riding skills. I rode my R1100S on track days for 2 years (about 24 track days), with excellent results. The plastic valve cover protector will touch the pavement easily on the track, with significant warning time after the pegs touched. The springiness in the plastic covers avoid a very hard contact, and in my experience often do not jack up the rear wheel for a slide – normally. If banked in hard, or if the contact was the result of a dip in the road surface (Laguna Seca turn 5 for example), it will jack the rear wheel and cause a slide.

 

Without the plastic you have a surprisingly larger amount of lean angle available (those protector eat a lot of clearance). However the contact is then very abrupt and rear wheel slide is inevitable for people of my skill. Pros are able to deal with it.

 

I testify that the scrape marks are identical to what I had.

 

My opinion – it does take very good skills to be able to lean a heavy bike such as the RT to the point of cyl head contact – and I have no personal experience with that. I never did it on the road and would not recommend trying intentionally, due to the chance of rear wheel induced low-side potential.

 

Philip

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My opinion – it does take very good skills to be able to lean a heavy bike such as the RT to the point of cyl head contact.

 

Philip, it doesn't take any skill at all, necessarily. Just really poor technique and a fearlessness. You're focusing on the end result of action, and it's meaningless.

 

What does take skill is:

 

1) Using the proper body position to make sure that your combined center of gravity remains as near to vertical as possible.

 

2) Riding it at that lean angle to maximize your ability to remain off your arse. That includes throttle control, letting the steering bounce, etc.

 

I'm not trying to be contrarian, here. Just precise. And it really takes no skill whatsoever to ride a bike down to the valve covers.

 

I am not suggesting that our friend has no skill, by the way. He's probably very skilled. I'm just trying to use precise thinking to perhaps save someone's life.

 

Welcome to the board, by the way. Glad you've joined us! smile.gif

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Firefight911
My opinion – it does take very good skills to be able to lean a heavy bike such as the RT to the point of cyl head contact.

 

Philip, it doesn't take any skill at all, necessarily. Just really poor technique and a fearlessness. You're focusing on the end result of action, and it's meaningless.

 

What does take skill is:

 

1) Using the proper body position to make sure that your combined center of gravity remains as near to vertical as possible.

 

2) Riding it at that lean angle to maximize your ability to remain off your arse. That includes throttle control, letting the steering bounce, etc.

 

I'm not trying to be contrarian, here. Just precise. And it really takes no skill whatsoever to ride a bike down to the valve covers.

 

I am not suggesting that our friend has no skill, by the way. He's probably very skilled. I'm just trying to use precise thinking to perhaps save someone's life.

 

Welcome to the board, by the way. Glad you've joined us! smile.gif

 

+1 to David's comments. You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make them drink!!

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russell_bynum
My opinion – it does take very good skills to be able to lean a heavy bike such as the RT to the point of cyl head contact.

 

Philip, it doesn't take any skill at all, necessarily. Just really poor technique and a fearlessness. You're focusing on the end result of action, and it's meaningless.

 

What does take skill is:

 

1) Using the proper body position to make sure that your combined center of gravity remains as near to vertical as possible.

 

2) Riding it at that lean angle to maximize your ability to remain off your arse. That includes throttle control, letting the steering bounce, etc.

 

I'm not trying to be contrarian, here. Just precise. And it really takes no skill whatsoever to ride a bike down to the valve covers.

 

I am not suggesting that our friend has no skill, by the way. He's probably very skilled. I'm just trying to use precise thinking to perhaps save someone's life.

 

Welcome to the board, by the way. Glad you've joined us! smile.gif

 

What David said.

 

On the sportbike boards, everyone wants to "Get their knee down". The majority of the time, people get their knee down by using really bad body position, poor lines, and bad throttle control. They also crash a bunch.

 

Dragging hard parts is a bad idea on public roads. Actually...it isn't such a hot idea at the track either. Lisa and I saw a new R12GS lowside at Streets of Willow when the rider dragged the engine guards, levered the tires off the ground, and crashed. (Better body position would have helped him, btw.)

 

Also...just an FYI...you don't need a 190 rear with a super-sticky Pilot Power tire to drag the valve covers on a BMW. I've seen it done with a standard-sized ME880.

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I never thought about doing this, but I´ve done it.

With an Ohlins rear shock and a 190 michelin power.

Here is the picture of the dragged valve cover plastic protector.

 

 

 

MoroCycler

 

 

 

I did not include some details that are important here.

First I will like to leave out my skills or No-skills, now to the facts:

 

I was ridding a very twisty public toll-free road near Guadalajara (Plan de Barrancas).

Then I passed another biker in a right hander turn, obviously I had to step over the yellow central line for that, once I start entering again my lane, the turn gets to be a decreasing radius one.

Then I see a long semi-truck that has ended overpassing a slow truck (on the opposite lane). Since I was ridding with the rear luggage cases (wide butt), beeing close to yellow line (and incomming trucks) and entering a tightening curve was going to be risky so I decided to push some more my right handle to make the bike turn more and avoid the trucks.

Body position at that point was my second priority since I was trying to save the crash, make the turn, and MAYBE be prepared for abandoning the RT to its own luck.

So, the engine head dragged at a very soft contact-impact, smoke went out from the plastic cover and I felt just a slight rear tyre lifting, shure it did not leave the ground, just a minor rebound, then when I felt I made the turn and was far safe from being hit by the trucks I returned the bike to a less leaned attitude and made an easy turn.

 

That´s how it happened. Hope this makes clear that it was not my intention to test how far down I could lean my bike, nor how fast I could ride it in a turn.

But I admit that I am responsible for doing that pass at an improper time and place.

Good thing of all this is that I made it and that If otherwise I had panic-ed and decided not to "push" the bike to its apparent limits, the story would have been very different.

 

 

Humberto

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ShovelStrokeEd

Sounds to me like you did nothing I could call "wrong". Better body position would certainly have improved the situation and might have prevented the touch down. I'm sure you had other things to think about given your situation.

 

That is the very reason I have trained myself to use the Ride Smart techniques all the time, even on gentle curves where it certainly doesn't call for it. I have also, worked on using the same, "bite the inside mirror" technique as a a survival reaction. When I find myself with the need to suddenly tighten a turn, I nearly automatically send my upper body lower and further off the centerline of the bike. I may or may not couple this with more push on the bar to increase lean angle. A lot depends on how much further and how quickly I need to get further over to complete the turn.

 

I find this upper body movement, so long as I remain sufficiently decoupled from the bars, to cause minimal, if any, upset to the bike. It just kinda tightens its line all on its own without me having to apply any additional steering or lean. Practice and working hard to ingrain the habit of getting the body position right to begin with have added a very useful tool to the box of stuff I bring along in my head and muscle memory. Said tool's purpose is to get me to my destination unscathed.

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Greetings,

Here are a couple of pictures of my wife in her 1st Track Day on her RT. She did drag the cyclinder head as well as the side of the belly pan.

Lessons learned:

1) First and last time the RT will go to the track.

2) Thankful she didnt crash.

3) She is a very good rider.

69377688-L.jpg

69378789-L.jpg

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tickle_my_tummy

I've watched this thread with interest and see that the usual crowd slam your body position. Yawn, Yawn, Yawn. They must read books rather than ride bikes. I take your point for what it was - that the 12RT corners fantastically well. And yes, it could so very easily go wrong - so good on you for keeping your line although a bit risky on the road! I'm not sure that those who knock you even have a 12RT - well there's a surprise wink.gif

 

 

dbarc38 - wonderful pics of the 1100RT - careful now - your wife will be banned for being excellent. Good on you and her!

 

Cheers

 

Paul

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I've watched this thread with interest and see that the usual crowd slam your body position. Yawn, Yawn, Yawn. They must read books rather than ride bikes.

 

Excellent, Paul. Most excellent indeed. The honesty, fairness, helpful knowledge, and kind spirit of this board continues to amaze me. It just never ends, and these sorts of exchanges are especially helpful, particularly because they provide data rather than insult.

 

Thank you so very much for this balanced, mature addition. This sort of helpful dialogue will definitely move us forward. thumbsup.gif

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I've watched this thread with interest and see that the usual crowd slam your body position. Yawn, Yawn, Yawn.
Why do you yawn? Learning to ride better, including with better body position is boring???

 

And I see little slamming going on. As a matter of fact David went to great pains to say that he was not criticizing the OP specifically.

They must read books rather than ride bikes.
Yeah we read books, then practice what they say, because they are right. Scraping stuff is symptomatic that something is wrong. Often it's body position. Learning to ride faster and scrape less is a worthwhile goal.
I'm not sure that those who knock you even have a 12RT - well there's a surprise
Don't be so quick to dismiss the decades of cumulative riding experience here. We can ALL learn plenty. Try it before YOU knock it!
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Greetings,

My point on posting pictures of my wife at track days on her RT. More than likely a good rider is capable of scraping parts and still keep control of the bike. I applaud the abilities of a rider and the trust one must have of a wonderful bike to push it to the limits when the situation arises.

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I've watched this thread with interest and see that the usual crowd slam your body position. Yawn, Yawn, Yawn.

 

Which crowd is that. I want to make sure I belong to the most popular one.

 

[edit] Hold the phone. This thread kind of ticks me off. A guy posts about touching a head down, and someone else replys (questions) the details about the touchdown. OP admits less than optimal judgement and then we all are treated to the "usual crowd" laments.

 

Give me a break. There are a bunch of members here who know quite a bit about riding. Many of them have contributed tons of time and effort to help themselves and others ride better. And, believe it or not, they also actually own and ride these motorcycles.

 

A lot.

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Be careful, you're about to bite off more than you can chew with this bunch.

I can vouch that there are some very excellant riders in this group. One in particular, who rides like a girl, handles my bike well better than I do. wink.gif

I have always valued constructive critisism. In this case ego is a four letter word. There's always going to be someone with better skills. If that someone takes the time to help me become a better rider, the least I can do is listen, learn, and maybe buy them lunch.

One of the things I learned in grade school was that if the coach yelled at me for doing something stupid, it wasn't personal. He was trying to make me better.

Now, apologize for being a turd so we can get on with the lesson.

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