Wild Dog Adventure Riding

General => General Bike Related Banter => Topic started by: Dux on January 17, 2019, 09:16:40 pm

Title: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Dux on January 17, 2019, 09:16:40 pm
So there are so many people out there riding either daily or weekends only , what is the riding experience or ability of the riders out there . Feel free to elaborate on your experiences .
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Offroadrider on January 17, 2019, 09:28:46 pm
Riding and racing since I was 14, I only race in off road cars now as a navigator, at 53 I'm way more happy doing the odd adventure tour with my mates.
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Straatkat on January 17, 2019, 11:51:36 pm
Dux I think that anyone who has been riding off road for a while and done some trips will be able to ride fairly OK, some will never learn and should stop riding immediately, but there are a few truly gifted riders that have a natural ability and their skill level quickly rise above the ordinary, they should go racing!
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Bliknęrs on January 18, 2019, 06:54:40 am
15 to 55 or 40 years riding here. Dirt bikes to superbikes to adventure bikes as I grew up and older. Never did any training but was on the track most weekends while on superbikes.
Even had a cruiser at one stage and the missus loved hanging out with the cruiser crowd. Twice I had to resort to scooters 1 vespa and one Skygo to keep my sanity due to being armgat but even that was great.
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Dux on January 18, 2019, 07:06:59 am
Dux I think that anyone who has been riding off road for a while and done some trips will be able to ride fairly OK, some will never learn and should stop riding immediately, but there are a few truly gifted riders that have a natural ability and their skill level quickly rise above the ordinary, they should go racing!
[/quote

Reason I did the poll is because of the shockingly bad level of riding I see out there , I am NOT a riding god , but really the skill level on the roads/dirt is really bad and I am surprised that there aren't more accidents , the really scary part is how many of these people think they can ride well .
Yes , of course there are always the naturally talented riders but that isn't necessarily the only reason to go racing .
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Rommel on January 18, 2019, 07:22:46 am
Classic case of:  if I ride slower than you I'm a twatwaffle, and if I ride faster than you I'm a hooligan.
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Mpandla on January 18, 2019, 07:23:24 am

Reason I did the poll is because of the shockingly bad level of riding I see out there , I am NOT a riding god , but really the skill level on the roads/dirt is really bad and I am surprised that there aren't more accidents , the really scary part is how many of these people think they can ride well .
Yes , of course there are always the naturally talented riders but that isn't necessarily the only reason to go racing .


I have also seen some guys that go out and think its play time once they hit dirt. But judging by the tyre marks around tight corners, they are pushing the limits of their abilities in dangerous situations
Coupled to that, what I have seen on some of the Honda out rides is the complete.. shall we just say misunderstanding/lack of common sense of the basics, like taking water with you if you are riding in the Karoo.
But I think the training that is now offered over weekend at Killarney will help guys a lot
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: ClimbingTurtle on January 18, 2019, 07:32:41 am
I was never allowed a bike when I was growing up - Mama Beer so NEE!
BUT... my olman was a manager at Yamaha, and after that at Honda - so there was always bikes to ride - particularly on Customer Days at Killarney, so I started riding at about age 6.....
First own bike was at age 22 - XT500 that I still have.
I have never ridden a superbike or on a race track - I know i will not want to stop......
I have done a number of longer trips, including Kenya & back, however I consider myself to be competent, but not more - and certainly not good enough to race (secret dreams) and I pretty much always ride under my 80% ability - I like riding, I dont like crashing.....
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: jaybiker on January 18, 2019, 07:45:19 am
There comes a sad infuriating stage when experience doesn't help, because ability declines anyway.   :xxbah: :'(

I still want to wheelie and powerslide. I still want to leap high in the air and ride deep sand, rocks ruts and narrow tweespoor at 160kmh.

Even though I could never do those things before.  :imaposer:
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Mpandla on January 18, 2019, 07:53:21 am
There comes a sad infuriating stage when experience doesn't help, because ability declines anyway.   :xxbah: :'(

I still want to wheelie and powerslide. I still want to leap high in the air and ride deep sand, rocks ruts and narrow tweespoor at 160kmh.

Even though I could never do those things before.  :imaposer:

I have realised that my fitness level.. or complete lack thereof.. lets the slight ability I do have decline quite rapidly while on a trip.. and that is also a bad thing
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Edgar on January 18, 2019, 07:56:12 am
Dux I think that anyone who has been riding off road for a while and done some trips will be able to ride fairly OK, some will never learn and should stop riding immediately, but there are a few truly gifted riders that have a natural ability and their skill level quickly rise above the ordinary, they should go racing!

Straatkat, thank you for the kind words, I appreciate it  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: 73 Peanut on January 18, 2019, 10:55:50 am
I went to breedsneck and met up with Straatkat and another dawg for a ride last Sunday that turned into me having to ride slower than usual as my son wanted to go with on his BMW 650gs that he uses to college and back . Let's say that he is a very good and safe on the black stuff but nervous of falling and breaking his bike . Not to mention his abs would not turn off so I had to ride tar home. There are so many factors that influence the way people ride . I have realised that i might like the rough stuff but yet he doesn't want to damage his bike so need to compromise and only ride with him on the normal gravel . The size of your bike also plays a important role as a big adventure bike wont go or do what a light plastic can unless you aren't worried about falling . So it doesn't only boil down to experience.  I was fortunate to grow up riding motocross bikes on weekends but he wasn't.  We all have limitations and that means Louisxander better come ride more .
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Mikie on January 18, 2019, 11:33:49 am
I went to breedsneck and met up with Straatkat and another dawg for a ride last Sunday that turned into me having to ride slower than usual as my son wanted to go with on his BMW 650gs that he uses to college and back . Let's say that he is a very good and safe on the black stuff but nervous of falling and breaking his bike . Not to mention his abs would not turn off so I had to ride tar home. There are so many factors that influence the way people ride . I have realised that i might like the rough stuff but yet he doesn't want to damage his bike so need to compromise and only ride with him on the normal gravel . The size of your bike also plays a important role as a big adventure bike wont go or do what a light plastic can unless you aren't worried about falling . So it doesn't only boil down to experience.  I was fortunate to grow up riding motocross bikes on weekends but he wasn't.  We all have limitations and that means Louisxander better come ride more .

Why would ABS not turning off force you onto Tarmac?
I never turn my ABS off
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Welsh on January 18, 2019, 11:52:24 am
I went to breedsneck and met up with Straatkat and another dawg for a ride last Sunday that turned into me having to ride slower than usual as my son wanted to go with on his BMW 650gs that he uses to college and back . Let's say that he is a very good and safe on the black stuff but nervous of falling and breaking his bike . Not to mention his abs would not turn off so I had to ride tar home. There are so many factors that influence the way people ride . I have realised that i might like the rough stuff but yet he doesn't want to damage his bike so need to compromise and only ride with him on the normal gravel . The size of your bike also plays a important role as a big adventure bike wont go or do what a light plastic can unless you aren't worried about falling . So it doesn't only boil down to experience.  I was fortunate to grow up riding motocross bikes on weekends but he wasn't.  We all have limitations and that means Louisxander better come ride more .

Why would ABS not turning off force you onto Tarmac?
I never turn my ABS off

Because your brakes don't work properly off tar with ABS on, particularly on Hard Pack, with loose stuff on top..  :peepwall: I almost wiped out a founding member in that scenario the GSV just kept rolling when he had stopped...
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: sidetrack on January 18, 2019, 11:54:41 am
I went to breedsneck and met up with Straatkat and another dawg for a ride last Sunday that turned into me having to ride slower than usual as my son wanted to go with on his BMW 650gs that he uses to college and back . Let's say that he is a very good and safe on the black stuff but nervous of falling and breaking his bike . Not to mention his abs would not turn off so I had to ride tar home. There are so many factors that influence the way people ride . I have realised that i might like the rough stuff but yet he doesn't want to damage his bike so need to compromise and only ride with him on the normal gravel . The size of your bike also plays a important role as a big adventure bike wont go or do what a light plastic can unless you aren't worried about falling . So it doesn't only boil down to experience.  I was fortunate to grow up riding motocross bikes on weekends but he wasn't.  We all have limitations and that means Louisxander better come ride more .

Why would ABS not turning off force you onto Tarmac?
I never turn my ABS off

Because your brakes don't work properly off tar with ABS on, particularly on Hard Pack, with loose stuff on top..  :peepwall: I almost wiped out a founding member in that scenario the GSV just kept rolling when he had stopped...
Experienced that first hand last weekend on a Parys ride, almost overshot a corner as the rear just kept shuddering with very little braking. Not a fan of ABS off road.
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Omninorm on January 18, 2019, 11:57:05 am
Yeah, I have noticed some people better in certain terrain too. I often ride with 3 good friends, all on 690's.
We are all pretty much the same on tar....one just takes more risks.
Then when it gets to riding in the sand one is way better than the other 3
The one that can ride sand well cannot really wheelie that well but one of those who cannot do sand is on the back wheel more than on two.
Then we get to karoo highway and another one who can't ride sand or wheelie looks like he was born on it, way more skill, slidign around sideways everywhere.
Then we get to technical slow stuff and the one seems a little more adept than the rest at slow speed rough climbs and drops etc.

It's really all relative.
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Mpandla on January 18, 2019, 12:04:56 pm
Experienced that first hand last weekend on a Parys ride, almost overshot a corner as the rear just kept shuddering with very little braking. Not a fan of ABS off road.

I also dont turn it off on the AT. Never had that suddering of the back brake on the AT.
When I had the 800Gs it would do that. Always turned it off on the GS
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: ClimbingTurtle on January 18, 2019, 12:36:32 pm
I went to breedsneck and met up with Straatkat and another dawg for a ride last Sunday that turned into me having to ride slower than usual as my son wanted to go with on his BMW 650gs that he uses to college and back . Let's say that he is a very good and safe on the black stuff but nervous of falling and breaking his bike . Not to mention his abs would not turn off so I had to ride tar home. There are so many factors that influence the way people ride . I have realised that i might like the rough stuff but yet he doesn't want to damage his bike so need to compromise and only ride with him on the normal gravel . The size of your bike also plays a important role as a big adventure bike wont go or do what a light plastic can unless you aren't worried about falling . So it doesn't only boil down to experience.  I was fortunate to grow up riding motocross bikes on weekends but he wasn't.  We all have limitations and that means Louisxander better come ride more .

Why would ABS not turning off force you onto Tarmac?
I never turn my ABS off

If you are pushing it to the point that the ABS is affecting your riding on the gravel, you are under-estimating your lighties riding skill!!  :imaposer:
I forget to turn mine off sometimes, just take it a little easier, plan your braking and ride at 75% instead of 95%!
And he will probably learn from it....
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Mikie on January 18, 2019, 12:58:29 pm
I went to breedsneck and met up with Straatkat and another dawg for a ride last Sunday that turned into me having to ride slower than usual as my son wanted to go with on his BMW 650gs that he uses to college and back . Let's say that he is a very good and safe on the black stuff but nervous of falling and breaking his bike . Not to mention his abs would not turn off so I had to ride tar home. There are so many factors that influence the way people ride . I have realised that i might like the rough stuff but yet he doesn't want to damage his bike so need to compromise and only ride with him on the normal gravel . The size of your bike also plays a important role as a big adventure bike wont go or do what a light plastic can unless you aren't worried about falling . So it doesn't only boil down to experience.  I was fortunate to grow up riding motocross bikes on weekends but he wasn't.  We all have limitations and that means Louisxander better come ride more .

Why would ABS not turning off force you onto Tarmac?
I never turn my ABS off

Because your brakes don't work properly off tar with ABS on, particularly on Hard Pack, with loose stuff on top..  :peepwall: I almost wiped out a founding member in that scenario the GSV just kept rolling when he had stopped...

I had a blood running cold moment once with my ABS on, but I was tired and not concentrating properly anymore, almost overshot a crossing
Was my own fault, the rest, I have done many many thousands of KM's around the country, always with it on and no issues
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Straatkat on January 18, 2019, 01:10:43 pm
Thing is, when your wheel locks up even a little, the brakes will release and you will have zero stopping ability until the system allows you to brake again. In mud or a slippery surface it is much worse, to the point that I almost could not ride my 1200RT off road when wet. Sometimes you need to stop quickly and on the 500 I routinely lock up my wheels, both ends, obviously not at the same time, but my riding style is such that I will crash horribly if I cannot apply the brakes when I need to stop. ABS is a tar system, unless some clever techie found a way past it at xxxxxx manufacturer.
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: DavidMorrisXp on January 18, 2019, 01:15:41 pm
Surely on the newer bikes the ABS is tuned for the dirt, provided you switch to offroad mode or gravel mode as the case may be
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Offroadrider on January 18, 2019, 01:36:25 pm
If I had to tour from Europe to SA it would be called "The slow way down" not because i can't get on the cable but because I prefer to chill it.
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: jaybiker on January 18, 2019, 02:05:48 pm
As I mentioned on a different thread, it's on long rutted descents where ABS has caused me to nearly come to grief, and it took a couple of times for me to figure it out.

The hopping wheels cause the sensors to fool the brakes to release when you need them applied. It's kinda scary, I can tell ya.  :o

The ABS on my X/C can be switched off but it resets every time the bike becomes stationary - and on dirt I do tend to become stationary now and again.  :-[

That's why I pull the fuse.
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Mikie on January 18, 2019, 02:07:33 pm
Thing is, when your wheel locks up even a little, the brakes will release and you will have zero stopping ability until the system allows you to brake again. In mud or a slippery surface it is much worse, to the point that I almost could not ride my 1200RT off road when wet. Sometimes you need to stop quickly and on the 500 I routinely lock up my wheels, both ends, obviously not at the same time, but my riding style is such that I will crash horribly if I cannot apply the brakes when I need to stop. ABS is a tar system, unless some clever techie found a way past it at xxxxxx manufacturer.

 :o Bertie, its cos you forgot to fit knoblies
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: jaybiker on January 18, 2019, 02:11:31 pm
Just thinking, of course maybe on orange bikes with their oh, so superior suspension, the wheels don't hop, so the problem doesn't manifest.  :lol8:
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Africanus on January 18, 2019, 03:15:14 pm
The ABS on my X/C can be switched off but it resets every time the bike becomes stationary - and on dirt I do tend to become stationary now and again.  :-[


I think you meant the ABS can be switched of on an XC but only defaults to ABS when you switch the ignition off.



Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: BikerJan on January 18, 2019, 03:37:57 pm
On one of the previous BMW challenges a guy died as a result of the ABS not being switched off
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Omninorm on January 18, 2019, 03:47:16 pm
Other then downhill decent I love Offroad mode that the 690 Dongle enables. Lock up rear whenever you want but the front will not lock up and drop you. It also helps that you don't have to reset it all the time.
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Dux on January 18, 2019, 04:31:43 pm
My feeling is to learn to ride without ABS and traction control , if and when they fail you at least want to be in a position to be able to ride without relying on the electronics .
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Weedkiller - Adie on January 18, 2019, 04:39:48 pm
Ek druk knoppie, ek ry, ek val.  So gaat dit aan vir baie jare op teer en grond.

Deesdae val ek baie minner.  Ek vra my altyd die selfde vraag, hoe goed is ek eintlik?  Hoekom val ek nou minner?

EK KONSENTREER MEER.

Meeste van my valle was my gedagtes op heel ander plekke as die pad.  Dit was selfs met baaisikil ook so.  Sederd ek so paar jaar terug sien my dokter het weer 'n nuwe motor met my geld gekoop het ek besluit om plan te maak.  Ek ry nogsteeds 500 tot 700 km grondpad per dag, Ry nie eintlik stadiger nie.  Is ek 'n beter ryer.  Dinkiesonie.  Ek ry partykeer met of sonder ABS, eintlik RY EK NET.

fokkit, Ek kan nie eers wheelie nie, wat nog van powerslide en en en.  Na meer as 80 000km geniet ek dit nog net so.

Ek commute NOOIT en as ek moet is ek 'n wrak.

Adie
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Straatkat on January 18, 2019, 04:42:48 pm
So how did this riding skill discussion become a full on ABS brakes discussion? I blame Peanut for the diversion!
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Omninorm on January 18, 2019, 04:45:38 pm

My feeling is to learn to ride without ABS and traction control , if and when they fail you at least want to be in a position to be able to ride without relying on the electronics .

I think if you rely on them to help/save you - then you are riding outside your limits. So I agree in essence with you Dux, however - when ABS kicks in even a noob, chances are good that you could have dropped a bike. So...bad for confidence if you sitting with a broken leg.
For me the safety features are there to catch me when I exceed those limits - I mean if you feel ABS kick in on the front in the dirt, or on tar chances are you would have locked the front and possibly dropped your bike if not for the ABS. - Note speaking front only. You want the rear to slide in dirt.

But I agree with Straatkat. This has now descended from riding skill to the validity of safety features.
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Weedkiller - Adie on January 18, 2019, 04:50:42 pm
So how did this riding skill discussion become a full on ABS brakes discussion? I blame Peanut for the diversion!

Also  wondered, so had to find where to put in in my post.  :imaposer:

Adie
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Crossed-up on January 18, 2019, 09:25:29 pm
Perhaps a distinction should be made between skilled riding and safe riding.  I've often ridden with people who are just as useless as me on their bikes, BUT THEY KNOW IT, and so they ride slower and with more concentration. Consequently they seldom crash. Others think they're Dakar material after a couple of hours and crash repeatedly.  They might even be able to do amazing stuff on their bikes but they're reckless, thoughtless, careless or just crazy.
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Zanie on January 18, 2019, 10:54:43 pm
The voting choices are a bit odd. I could basically just choose "ridden road and dirt".

I have done beginner (multiple times) and intermediate off-road training, but no advanced courses (ditch jumping looks scary).

I've done funduros, but have not raced enduros. Some have tried to get me into the beginners ladies racing scene, but the event costs are high compared to funduros and the crashes are worse at higher speeds. A crash at just 50km/h during a funduro did enough damage to keep me off my dirt bike for 5 months. That's mental anguish I don't want to repeat.

I use my one bike as my daily commuter (come rain or shine or - in 1 case - hail) and for multi-day trips. Yet I've had no accidents on a tar road. My only breaks and sprains resulted from newbie-ness on off-road (when I had <10,000km of riding experience) and dirt bike riding while pushing my own personal envelope.

Longer time in the saddle = more experience and (theoretically at least) less risk, but there's no measure to indicate this in the poll, other than the "rode less than a year", but some cover 10,000 km/month while others take years to do the same distance. Perhaps a poll of "how many km do you ride per year?" with some options (0-1000km tar; 0-1000km dirt; 1000-5000km tar; 1000-5000km dirt; etc.)? I'd be really interested to see that. Or maybe this has been done before?

Side note: On an organised adventure ride, a guy raced past me on a narrow, rough uphill, basically forcing me to the very edge of the track and almost into a bush. I managed to hold it together, but someone new to riding would have hit the deck. This guy had Roof of Africa background. Yes, he had skills, but he was reckless and thoughtless. Not only did he hurt himself on the trip, when he hit a mud-hole on an otherwise gravel highway, but he showed a 60+ year-old with wife as pillion how to release all 200 ponies on his KTM1290. Later that day, that older rider (who'd never had an accident before) crashed. Pillion had fractured metatarsals (mid-foot toe-bones) and rider was very badly bruised and had to go to a local clinic - did I mention the rider was on Warfarin?
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Bliknęrs on January 19, 2019, 06:08:05 am
Your list only lists some not all options regarding experience.
Thats why the discussion is all over the place. Some consider ability the ability to slide and wheelie and some considers it the ability to stay alive after years of riding.
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Kaboef on January 19, 2019, 06:19:17 am
Perhaps a distinction should be made between skilled riding and safe riding.  I've often ridden with people who are just as useless as me on their bikes, BUT THEY KNOW IT, and so they ride slower and with more concentration. Consequently they seldom crash. Others think they're Dakar material after a couple of hours and crash repeatedly.  They might even be able to do amazing stuff on their bikes but they're reckless, thoughtless, careless or just crazy.

Spot on

I ride slow not because I cant ride fast.
I ride slow because I am shit scared of injuring myself.
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Dux on January 19, 2019, 06:38:42 am
Perhaps a distinction should be made between skilled riding and safe riding.  I've often ridden with people who are just as useless as me on their bikes, BUT THEY KNOW IT, and so they ride slower and with more concentration. Consequently they seldom crash. Others think they're Dakar material after a couple of hours and crash repeatedly.  They might even be able to do amazing stuff on their bikes but they're reckless, thoughtless, careless or just crazy.

Skilled riders are safe riders , they have the ability , they know it and know they have it in reserve if needed , but generally tend to ride safely and well within their comfort zone . When you are riding with skilled riders you will know it , these are the sort of guys that will happily ride  at the back of a group or if they are riding up front they are riding so smooth that they look like they are going for a ride in the parking area , they generally have nothing to prove because the skills are also a mindset .
The other type you are referring to are plain simple windgat riders , they think they are good and tend to ride way above their abilities , and do crash a lot , usually riding with no consideration for others while showing off their so called 'abilities' to all and sundry .

Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Welsh on January 19, 2019, 06:48:38 am
Perhaps a distinction should be made between skilled riding and safe riding.  I've often ridden with people who are just as useless as me on their bikes, BUT THEY KNOW IT, and so they ride slower and with more concentration. Consequently they seldom crash. Others think they're Dakar material after a couple of hours and crash repeatedly.  They might even be able to do amazing stuff on their bikes but they're reckless, thoughtless, careless or just crazy.

Skilled riders are safe riders , they have the ability , they know it and know they have it in reserve if needed , but generally tend to ride safely and well within their comfort zone . When you are riding with skilled riders you will know it , these are the sort of guys that will happily ride  at the back of a group or if they are riding up front they are riding so smooth that they look like they are going for a ride in the parking area , they generally have nothing to prove because the skills are also a mindset .
The other type you are referring to are plain simple windgat riders , they think they are good and tend to ride way above their abilities , and do crash a lot , usually riding with no consideration for others while showing off their so called 'abilities' to all and sundry .

Having grown up riding in muddy wet conditions in Wales, I believe off road riding gives you way more appreciation of surfaces and what grip is (or isn't) available, this helps on both tar and offroad.  8) 
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Dux on January 19, 2019, 06:52:19 am
The voting choices are a bit odd. I could basically just choose "ridden road and dirt".

I have done beginner (multiple times) and intermediate off-road training, but no advanced courses (ditch jumping looks scary).

I've done funduros, but have not raced enduros. Some have tried to get me into the beginners ladies racing scene, but the event costs are high compared to funduros and the crashes are worse at higher speeds. A crash at just 50km/h during a funduro did enough damage to keep me off my dirt bike for 5 months. That's mental anguish I don't want to repeat.

I use my one bike as my daily commuter (come rain or shine or - in 1 case - hail) and for multi-day trips. Yet I've had no accidents on a tar road. My only breaks and sprains resulted from newbie-ness on off-road (when I had <10,000km of riding experience) and dirt bike riding while pushing my own personal envelope.

Longer time in the saddle = more experience and (theoretically at least) less risk, but there's no measure to indicate this in the poll, other than the "rode less than a year", but some cover 10,000 km/month while others take years to do the same distance. Perhaps a poll of "how many km do you ride per year?" with some options (0-1000km tar; 0-1000km dirt; 1000-5000km tar; 1000-5000km dirt; etc.)? I'd be really interested to see that. Or maybe this has been done before?

Side note: On an organised adventure ride, a guy raced past me on a narrow, rough uphill, basically forcing me to the very edge of the track and almost into a bush. I managed to hold it together, but someone new to riding would have hit the deck.This guy had Roof of Africa background. Yes, he had skills, but he was reckless and thoughtless. Not only did he hurt himself on the trip, when he hit a mud-hole on an otherwise gravel highway, but he showed a 60+ year-old with wife as pillion how to release all 200 ponies on his KTM1290. Later that day, that older rider (who'd never had an accident before) crashed. Pillion had fractured metatarsals (mid-foot toe-bones) and rider was very badly bruised and had to go to a local clinic - did I mention the rider was on Warfarin?

I thought about it long and hard ,I could have had so many options but decided to keep it simple

What you have done is advanced rider training , basic training is what people do to pass their license

Enduro's are longer in time period and would be faster because you do have some really fast people out there , but overall there is not that much difference except that you have far fewer windgat rider in enduro because they don't like being shown up

The biggest thing that training facilities need to overcome is bad habits , these are not necessarily good habits and more often than not tend to slow people down or make them more dangerous without them realising it , so unfortunately time in the saddle is not always a good thing purely because those habits become more ingrained with time 

Refer to my previous post , these type are pure simple windgat and are generally a hindrance to everyone
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Welsh on January 19, 2019, 06:54:50 am
The voting choices are a bit odd. I could basically just choose "ridden road and dirt".

I have done beginner (multiple times) and intermediate off-road training, but no advanced courses (ditch jumping looks scary).

I've done funduros, but have not raced enduros. Some have tried to get me into the beginners ladies racing scene, but the event costs are high compared to funduros and the crashes are worse at higher speeds. A crash at just 50km/h during a funduro did enough damage to keep me off my dirt bike for 5 months. That's mental anguish I don't want to repeat.

I use my one bike as my daily commuter (come rain or shine or - in 1 case - hail) and for multi-day trips. Yet I've had no accidents on a tar road. My only breaks and sprains resulted from newbie-ness on off-road (when I had <10,000km of riding experience) and dirt bike riding while pushing my own personal envelope.

Longer time in the saddle = more experience and (theoretically at least) less risk, but there's no measure to indicate this in the poll, other than the "rode less than a year", but some cover 10,000 km/month while others take years to do the same distance. Perhaps a poll of "how many km do you ride per year?" with some options (0-1000km tar; 0-1000km dirt; 1000-5000km tar; 1000-5000km dirt; etc.)? I'd be really interested to see that. Or maybe this has been done before?

Side note: On an organised adventure ride, a guy raced past me on a narrow, rough uphill, basically forcing me to the very edge of the track and almost into a bush. I managed to hold it together, but someone new to riding would have hit the deck. This guy had Roof of Africa background. Yes, he had skills, but he was reckless and thoughtless. Not only did he hurt himself on the trip, when he hit a mud-hole on an otherwise gravel highway, but he showed a 60+ year-old with wife as pillion how to release all 200 ponies on his KTM1290. Later that day, that older rider (who'd never had an accident before) crashed. Pillion had fractured metatarsals (mid-foot toe-bones) and rider was very badly bruised and had to go to a local clinic - did I mention the rider was on Warfarin?

I thought about it long and hard ,I could have had so many options but decided to keep it simple

What you have done is advanced rider training , basic training is what people do to pass their license

Enduro's are longer in time period and would be faster because you do have some really fast people out there , but overall there is not that much difference except that you have far fewer windgat rider in enduro because they don't like being shown up

The biggest thing that training facilities need to overcome is bad habits , these are not necessarily good habits and more often than not tend to slow people down or make them more dangerous without them realising it , so unfortunately time in the saddle is not always a good thing purely because those habits become more ingrained with time 

Refer to my previous post , these type are pure simple windgat and are generally a hindrance to everyone

All those colours do y eyes in.  :biggrin:
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Dux on January 19, 2019, 06:57:47 am
Perhaps a distinction should be made between skilled riding and safe riding.  I've often ridden with people who are just as useless as me on their bikes, BUT THEY KNOW IT, and so they ride slower and with more concentration. Consequently they seldom crash. Others think they're Dakar material after a couple of hours and crash repeatedly.  They might even be able to do amazing stuff on their bikes but they're reckless, thoughtless, careless or just crazy.

Skilled riders are safe riders , they have the ability , they know it and know they have it in reserve if needed , but generally tend to ride safely and well within their comfort zone . When you are riding with skilled riders you will know it , these are the sort of guys that will happily ride  at the back of a group or if they are riding up front they are riding so smooth that they look like they are going for a ride in the parking area , they generally have nothing to prove because the skills are also a mindset .
The other type you are referring to are plain simple windgat riders , they think they are good and tend to ride way above their abilities , and do crash a lot , usually riding with no consideration for others while showing off their so called 'abilities' to all and sundry .

Having grown up riding in muddy wet conditions in Wales, I believe off road riding gives you way more appreciation of surfaces and what grip is (or isn't) available, this helps on both tar and offroad.  8)

 :thumleft:
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: roxenz on January 19, 2019, 07:59:39 am
Good thread! Reading and learning. Coz I detest hospital food and cannot afford a new bike every year, I ride well within my limits (with a few regrettable instances when I found out exactly where those limits are  ;)). The various training folks available in this country can certainly teach the necessary skills to get to the point where one can enjoy riding on most (any?) surfaces. Cannot recommend this enough to anyone who gets that "tense apprehension" feeling when apporoaching sand/loose gravel/mud etc. If one is riding for any reason other than enjoyment (eg. to impress others) then you would be missing the point, I think. I commute daily, rain or shine, and I enjoy it. Although I enjoy long back roads trips the most!

BTW, there is a LOT of stuff to learn behind Welsh's simple observation on reading surfaces...  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Dux on January 19, 2019, 09:04:35 am
The voting choices are a bit odd. I could basically just choose "ridden road and dirt".

I have done beginner (multiple times) and intermediate off-road training, but no advanced courses (ditch jumping looks scary).

I've done funduros, but have not raced enduros. Some have tried to get me into the beginners ladies racing scene, but the event costs are high compared to funduros and the crashes are worse at higher speeds. A crash at just 50km/h during a funduro did enough damage to keep me off my dirt bike for 5 months. That's mental anguish I don't want to repeat.

I use my one bike as my daily commuter (come rain or shine or - in 1 case - hail) and for multi-day trips. Yet I've had no accidents on a tar road. My only breaks and sprains resulted from newbie-ness on off-road (when I had <10,000km of riding experience) and dirt bike riding while pushing my own personal envelope.

Longer time in the saddle = more experience and (theoretically at least) less risk, but there's no measure to indicate this in the poll, other than the "rode less than a year", but some cover 10,000 km/month while others take years to do the same distance. Perhaps a poll of "how many km do you ride per year?" with some options (0-1000km tar; 0-1000km dirt; 1000-5000km tar; 1000-5000km dirt; etc.)? I'd be really interested to see that. Or maybe this has been done before?

Side note: On an organised adventure ride, a guy raced past me on a narrow, rough uphill, basically forcing me to the very edge of the track and almost into a bush. I managed to hold it together, but someone new to riding would have hit the deck. This guy had Roof of Africa background. Yes, he had skills, but he was reckless and thoughtless. Not only did he hurt himself on the trip, when he hit a mud-hole on an otherwise gravel highway, but he showed a 60+ year-old with wife as pillion how to release all 200 ponies on his KTM1290. Later that day, that older rider (who'd never had an accident before) crashed. Pillion had fractured metatarsals (mid-foot toe-bones) and rider was very badly bruised and had to go to a local clinic - did I mention the rider was on Warfarin?

I thought about it long and hard ,I could have had so many options but decided to keep it simple

What you have done is advanced rider training , basic training is what people do to pass their license

Enduro's are longer in time period and would be faster because you do have some really fast people out there , but overall there is not that much difference except that you have far fewer windgat rider in enduro because they don't like being shown up

The biggest thing that training facilities need to overcome is bad habits , these are not necessarily good habits and more often than not tend to slow people down or make them more dangerous without them realising it , so unfortunately time in the saddle is not always a good thing purely because those habits become more ingrained with time 

Refer to my previous post , these type are pure simple windgat and are generally a hindrance to everyone

All those colours do y eyes in.  :biggrin:

After a few whisky's they start looking better  :biggrin:
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Odd Dog on January 19, 2019, 10:10:22 am
Been riding for 57yrs, raced for about  12yrs in total, mx, enduro and early years sidecar dirt tracks.
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Welsh on January 19, 2019, 12:28:17 pm
Good thread! Reading and learning. Coz I detest hospital food and cannot afford a new bike every year, I ride well within my limits (with a few regrettable instances when I found out exactly where those limits are  ;)). The various training folks available in this country can certainly teach the necessary skills to get to the point where one can enjoy riding on most (any?) surfaces. Cannot recommend this enough to anyone who gets that "tense apprehension" feeling when apporoaching sand/loose gravel/mud etc. If one is riding for any reason other than enjoyment (eg. to impress others) then you would be missing the point, I think. I commute daily, rain or shine, and I enjoy it. Although I enjoy long back roads trips the most!

BTW, there is a LOT of stuff to learn behind Welsh's simple observation on reading surfaces...  :thumleft:

We don't have a lot of good riding close by up here, but an old favourite is always the canals after the rains, I have witnessed carnage in places like the Brits railway yard, one guy can ride the mud with worn knobblies as if its a grass field, to the next guy on the same bike with brand new knobblies its an impassible quagmire? The same along the canals, the black snot clay would stop some guys dead, others no issue just keep it rolling...     

A bit of experience in kak conditions goes a long way.  :sip:
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: BabyBeemer on January 19, 2019, 12:37:18 pm
I rode from the age of 12 until around 26.  Had a break until the age of 44.  Riding the last 9 years - done around 160,000 kays - difficult to say how much dirt - not as much as I would like.  Have done some intermediate off road courses.  I am better than some - and not as good as some.  It seems that self confidence and the lack of fear of messing your bike up makes some appear better than others.  I am more comfortable doing more off road stuff on a smaller bike.  The GS is great for long distance touring and I do orange routes - with pillion.  Very difficult to rate yourself, and your perceived skill level is dependant on who you are riding with.
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Cracker on January 19, 2019, 02:45:51 pm
Still racing ...................... pretty crap at it but I enjoy the hit  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: jaybiker on January 19, 2019, 04:37:41 pm
Never done a day's training  :-[ and the nearest I've ever come to competition was the informal trail bike trials that we used to organise back in the stone (mud) age.
Plus the informal 'road races' that were our normal riding style even when riding to work, shops, filling station and everywhere else.  :-[ :-[

As I said in a previous post. SHEER BLOODY LUCK!  :eek7: :peepwall:
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: dirt rat on January 20, 2019, 06:19:35 am
Once or twice a year I get to riding with a German friend of mine - Jens Thallman.
Jens can ride a bit - he has two world titles in team enduro riding for the old East Germany and is still a sponsored racer today.
Some things I have learnt from him is the following.
To ride fast first you have to ride smooth.
To finish first you have to first finish.
Dual sport riding is not a race.
He maintains a speed of about 90km per hour but very seldom drops below that which makes him deceptively fast in the twisties on dirt.
I have never seen him wheelie or powerslide his bike.
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Oubones on January 20, 2019, 06:34:59 am
Once or twice a year I get to riding with a German friend of mine - Jens Thallman.
Jens can ride a bit - he has two world titles in team enduro riding for the old East Germany and is still a sponsored racer today.
Some things I have learnt from him is the following.
To ride fast first you have to ride smooth.
To finish first you have to first finish.
Dual sport riding is not a race.
He maintains a speed of about 90km per hour but very seldom drops below that which makes him deceptively fast in the twisties on dirt.
I have never seen him wheelie or powerslide his bike.
Wise man!
Dual sport/ Adventure riding is about getting there and back while enjoying the ride( not race)
I only ride with guys that have my viewpoint of all off us getting there no matter what!
I have had guys waiting a lot for me because off my pace and have also used more brakes than throttle on another ride, with some off the same riders on other terrain.
I believe you must be honest with yourself as to your skill level and ride accordingly.
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: dirt rat on January 20, 2019, 06:41:24 am
Oubones - waneer slaap jy ?
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Dux on January 20, 2019, 07:03:57 am
Once or twice a year I get to riding with a German friend of mine - Jens Thallman.
Jens can ride a bit - he has two world titles in team enduro riding for the old East Germany and is still a sponsored racer today.
Some things I have learnt from him is the following.
To ride fast first you have to ride smooth.
To finish first you have to first finish.
Dual sport riding is not a race.
He maintains a speed of about 90km per hour but very seldom drops below that which makes him deceptively fast in the twisties on dirt.
I have never seen him wheelie or powerslide his bike.

I was also taught that ,  smoothness and consistency , there is another advantage to riding smoother , staying more in shape you are using less energy so you quite often arrive at a destination fresher than other '' windgat ''  riders .
Your friend has skill , he doesn't need to  prove anything , and I am certain that if the need arose he would be able to wheelie or slide his way out of trouble anyway .
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: dirt rat on January 20, 2019, 07:10:19 am
Of course lifting the front wheel and powerslides must be part of your riding skills - when applied in the right circumstances.
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Oubones on January 20, 2019, 07:33:39 am
Oubones - waneer slaap jy ?
Nee jong, seun wat standby in mediese veld doen elke tweede week en vrou wat vol pyne is!
Slaap is min! :peepwall:
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: dirt rat on January 20, 2019, 07:44:55 am
Net een pil vir jou - Kaokoland
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Oubones on January 20, 2019, 08:03:32 am
Net een pil vir jou - Kaokoland
:thumleft: :drif:
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Welsh on January 20, 2019, 08:14:45 am
Once or twice a year I get to riding with a German friend of mine - Jens Thallman.
Jens can ride a bit - he has two world titles in team enduro riding for the old East Germany and is still a sponsored racer today.
Some things I have learnt from him is the following.
To ride fast first you have to ride smooth.
To finish first you have to first finish.
Dual sport riding is not a race.
He maintains a speed of about 90km per hour but very seldom drops below that which makes him deceptively fast in the twisties on dirt.
I have never seen him wheelie or powerslide his bike.

Back in the day, the East German MZ's in the ISDT were butt ugly but very competitive, they had a crank mounted clutch (aka the 450 BMW) and were designed to be ridden smoothly SITTING, they didn't think standing for 6 days was feasible. Smooth and fast.  :sip: 
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: dirt rat on January 20, 2019, 08:44:17 am
Jens competed on a 80cc 2stroke Simson. Never heard of it before but saw some Simson road bikes on my visit to Germany.
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Weedkiller - Adie on January 20, 2019, 09:32:08 am
Thinking abut it, I ride so relaxed, at any speed, that my arms/wrists/hands almost never get tired or sore, even on consecutive 600km plus days.  The fact that I am very light on the throttle and brakes 90% of the time also make tires last longer. (More money for riding)  I sit more than 90% of the time even if road is technical or sand.  I basically only stand if I want to attack the corners and then I'll be heavy on brakes and throttle as well or if road conditions REALLY require that.

In my books you don't need to stand under 'normal' riding speeds. It is a mental thing as standing you 'detach' yourself from the bike and do not feel how 'alive' the bike is.  Traction, G forces centrifugal forces are all linked to the speed you travel.  I don't even notice the bike underneath me anymore.  Standing WILL ALLOW the bike to react quicker on inputs while standing as it is now a separate 'moment' in the inertia equation which have POSITIVE and potential safety effects.

II DON'T SAY YOU DON'T NEED TO STAND. Just seen a few spills where 'too much standing' caused tiredness and the resultant 'oops'. Most riders I've seen who almost never stand also ride slower to accommodate.

Ek is 'n luigat so ry maar so sit sit.  >:D

Adie
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Kortbroek on January 20, 2019, 09:32:51 am
No option for started riding on the farm on a variety of clapped out bikes.

Also interesting to note the disparaging comments about power slides, wheelies etc. Aside from being good skills to have in my opinion, not everyone rides like that to show off. Some people do it purely because it's fun. If I wanted to do something with zero risk I'd join the neighbourhood book club.

That said I have a lot of respect for people that take it easy and ride within their ability. I also think an earlier poster had it spot on saying that many riders are very dangerous that think they're Dakar material while barely keeping the bike upright.

Sent from my BV6000 using Tapatalk

Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Xpat on January 20, 2019, 11:48:13 am
I probably shouldn't as I might rough some feathers, but I'm going to risk it. Here goes.

First of all - and sorry to bring ABS up again - my 2c are that you should never ever ride off tar with ABS on on the early generation ABS bikes such as 650GS or GS1150. While it works kind of fine on tar (taking into account it is first attempt at ABS on bikes), it is downright dangerous off tar. I have seen first hand what happens when you try to go down steep dirt road in Lesotho on Dakar with ABS on (we tried to switch it of but the bloody switch didn't work - it was rental bike). The runaway situation was one of the scariest things I have seen - luckily my unexperienced mate had wherewhital to bail relatively quickly, but it could have been much worse. Imagine sitting on steep downhill with rockface one side of the road and steep long drop off to the river with bike that just releases its breaks. No amount of experience - except maybe judo falls - will help you to resolve that situation (OK maybe switching off the key quickly might, but try to do that when the bike is accelerating down steep slope).

And even if the switch off works it is still way too dangerous IMO, as on a long ride (I have ridden GSA from Prague to CT) you will inevitably get distracted sometimes and forget to switch it off after break, leading to some unexpected hairraising situations.

My understanding is that newer generations of ABS are much better and I have seen guy ride one of those JustBlipIt Swazi hard core rides on 690 with ABS on up front (back must be always off - no matter what!) and he did just fine. Still the first thing I did on my 690 when I bought it was to disable the ABS permanently (on both wheels) and I prefer it that way, but that is me - if your more sophisticated ABS works for you off-tar, enjoy.


Second - and I have to step in here for absent 2SD - one aspect completely missing in this discussion and greatly affecting rider's ability to enjoy riding off tar is bike choice. The biggest nonsenses spewed on internet biking forums is the 'bike is capable' rubbish usually followed by video of Chris Birch or GS trophy dude on big heavy whale doing something stupid just to lure unspecting uniniformed wide eyed buyers.

Any bike is only as capable as the rider on it. And the bike will greatly limit (or enhance) what any rider can do on it - even Birch cannot do on 1190 what he can do on 300. Where people go wrong in this argument is usually like this - bike can do it, but rider can not, implying that only if rider would to more training, riding, watching Birch videos, whatever, they would be able to do exactly the same as Birchy on 1190.

While I of course agree that people should try to do their best to better their riding abilities throught training and practice to be safe and for me more importantly to enjoy riding to the fullest, the reality is that at the age most people on this thread are, there is distinct cap of how much they can improve. I started riding at 28 (i.e. late) and now at 46 if I'm pretty sure that if I spent the rest of my life riding/training every day, I'm not going to get anywhere close to Birch level. In others words in this bike/rider equation the rider and his/her ability are more or less given (with some wiggle room for improvement) and the bike is variable. So if one wants to maximize their enjoyment of biking (and let's face it, biking in the west is mostly about enjoyment) starting where they are in terms of their riding abilities, its much easier to achieve that by chosing a bike that is going to facilitate that as much as possible, rather than hinder it (because of weight, price, lack of crashability, etc.). And if one progresses to the point where they feel ready/need to master something bigger, it is again very easy swap the bike for something else.

I know this personally because I have been there and done it - made all the mistakes. Starting at too big bikes, being scared most of the time and hating other people who could throw those bikes around like bicycle, and eventually gradually moved down to smaller bikes, that allow me even with my admitedly very average at best riding abilities, explore where most don't dare to go. People complain here about windgat riders who are not aware about their riding limitations (and sure enough there are plenty), but for me this whole 'ego' thingy starts already at the beginning when buying bike, when people are not honest with themselves about their abilities, and often buy bikes that then hinder them in their riding. I remember on our Kaokoland RR somebody commented that he wished he was 10 years younger so that he can do the trip. When we checked how old he was it turned out he was the same age as Straatkat who was on the trip. By chosing right bike for his riding capabilities and expected riding terrain, Straatkat was able to enjoy a trip some of his contemporaries possibly with even better riding ability (Bertie is roadie, and started riding dirt only relatively recently)

Unlike 2SD, this is not a blanket rant against big bikes. Those bikes have their place and are best fit for majority of people who just want to tour, probably with pillion and at max stick to the good dirt roads. Nothing wrong with that and it will always be the biggest part of adv market. However judging by so many condescending comments here about powerslides and wheelies (I cannot wheelie, but I can lift front wheel in a pinch), both of which are absolutely basic skills required for dirt riding IMO (and that is why they are taught on those training academies - e.g. Countrytrax or BMW course in germany both of which I did), it seems to me that there might be a little misguided jelausy running underneath here. Just because you ride on Supertenere or any other big bike so slow that your rear wheel never slides a bit in dirt (that must be actually pretty difficult), doesn't mean that somebody riding let's say DR/XT/690 significantly faster with their tail wagging is windgat. They may indeed be riding much safer than you are (I remember how terrified I used to be when the rear wheel slipped just a little - I was attempting to achieve the same amount of grip and stability on dirt as on tar, which cannot be done).

To wrap up this long drivel and provide some very rough guide for bike selection from riding enjoyment and self improvement perspective - in my experience it is much better to ride a bike (where one prefers to ride) where one can use 80% of bikes capabilities (at their current skill level) - i.e. closer to bikes limit, than ride a bike when one barely scratches 30% of bike capabilities. To use very crude example, if normal people like me would get a chance to drive Ferari and Ford Fiesta 1.0 Ecoboost, most people would enjoy the Ford imensely more.

Sorry for long drivel, got carried away.
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Welsh on January 20, 2019, 12:14:48 pm
As said before, there can be more satisfaction, riding a slow bike quickly than a fast bike slowly. :peepwall:
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: dirt rat on January 20, 2019, 12:22:01 pm
Or light bike easy and heavy bike hard.
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Cracker on January 20, 2019, 12:33:17 pm
Sjoe!

No one answering from the hooligan brigade? ................. are they all dead?
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Weedkiller - Adie on January 20, 2019, 12:47:58 pm
Xpat was brave enough to put 'words to paper'  Since I joined the forum more than 90% will always go 'bigger is better' if info asked about a smallish bike.  Go search the threads you'll be amazed how many wants a 1190 with a 690 weight and attributes because bigger is better not realizing it is only the engine.  The bigger the bike the kakker the handling.  It is simple science. (inertia, momentum etc etc)

I started my second riding life with a 650 Dakkie and then went for a 1200GS.  Mike said early on that I would never GEL with the bike like the Dakkie.  After 30 000km mostly solo gravel I realized he is right.  I would not go into detail but on one trip we swapped bikes and I rode his 800. I was hooked again although it is not 'small' but it is 'a normal bike' with the same 'common attributes' like all BMW's (Good at noting but also bad at nothing handling wize)

It is now 4 years on the 800 and time has come to go even smaller.  How small? dunno yet.  I have enough experience now to know where/what and how I ride solo.  Will I miss the bigger bike? YES, I missed the 1200 comfort, power etc on long tar or flat graded gravel sections.  Then I decided to change my routes and now don't miss the 1200 at all but actually enjoy the 800 more.  I will apply the same principles if I go smaller.  Did I mention that I'm also getting older?.

**  In order to be 'Old and wise' you had to 'Young and stupid' once.  **

Xpat - I'm looking for a bike without ABS cos every now and then I forgot to switch it off and then are enjoying the ride so much I don't stop to switch off.  :'(  Ohh, on that note: Anyone who ride more than 400m gravel without realizing the ABS is still on should look at 'pre flight checklist'.  I've seen many riders NEVER look at the dashboard.

Adie
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Mark Hardy on January 20, 2019, 01:44:51 pm
As said before, there can be more satisfaction, riding a slow bike quickly than a fast bike slowly. :peepwall:

very true......   Honda 230 is so much fun to ride. spent hours playing around on them.
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Welsh on January 20, 2019, 01:58:05 pm
As said before, there can be more satisfaction, riding a slow bike quickly than a fast bike slowly. :peepwall:

very true......   Honda 230 is so much fun to ride. spent hours playing around on them.

Howzit Marky boy.  :sip:
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Mark Hardy on January 20, 2019, 03:23:32 pm
As said before, there can be more satisfaction, riding a slow bike quickly than a fast bike slowly. :peepwall:

very true......   Honda 230 is so much fun to ride. spent hours playing around on them.

Howzit Marky boy.  :sip:

Hiya Young Man  :sip:
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Omninorm on January 20, 2019, 03:30:54 pm
Going downhill and remembering to turn ABS off , looking at the motorcycle dashboard once in a while,  lifting the front wheel,  powersliding, locking up the rear when needed, standing when needed,  looking ahead -  all things that riding experience brings.


Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Dux on January 20, 2019, 03:50:40 pm
I probably shouldn't as I might rough some feathers, but I'm going to risk it. Here goes.

First of all - and sorry to bring ABS up again - my 2c are that you should never ever ride off tar with ABS on on the early generation ABS bikes such as 650GS or GS1150. While it works kind of fine on tar (taking into account it is first attempt at ABS on bikes), it is downright dangerous off tar. I have seen first hand what happens when you try to go down steep dirt road in Lesotho on Dakar with ABS on (we tried to switch it of but the bloody switch didn't work - it was rental bike). The runaway situation was one of the scariest things I have seen - luckily my unexperienced mate had wherewhital to bail relatively quickly, but it could have been much worse. Imagine sitting on steep downhill with rockface one side of the road and steep long drop off to the river with bike that just releases its breaks. No amount of experience - except maybe judo falls - will help you to resolve that situation (OK maybe switching off the key quickly might, but try to do that when the bike is accelerating down steep slope).

And even if the switch off works it is still way too dangerous IMO, as on a long ride (I have ridden GSA from Prague to CT) you will inevitably get distracted sometimes and forget to switch it off after break, leading to some unexpected hairraising situations.

My understanding is that newer generations of ABS are much better and I have seen guy ride one of those JustBlipIt Swazi hard core rides on 690 with ABS on up front (back must be always off - no matter what!) and he did just fine. Still the first thing I did on my 690 when I bought it was to disable the ABS permanently (on both wheels) and I prefer it that way, but that is me - if your more sophisticated ABS works for you off-tar, enjoy.My opinion is that even as good as the new ABS and TC systems are , riders should learn to ride with them both totally disconnected ,I have seen way too many riders who have 'learnt' to ride with these things operating , so much so that when the systems fail they tend to fall off with alarming regularity .


Second - and I have to step in here for absent 2SD - one aspect completely missing in this discussion and greatly affecting rider's ability to enjoy riding off tar is bike choice. The biggest nonsenses spewed on internet biking forums is the 'bike is capable' rubbish usually followed by video of Chris Birch or GS trophy dude on big heavy whale doing something stupid just to lure unspecting uniniformed wide eyed buyers.

Any bike is only as capable as the rider on it. Riders need to realise that different riders have different abilities , respect that And the bike will greatly limit (or enhance) what any rider can do on it - even Birch cannot do on 1190 what he can do on 300. Where people go wrong in this argument is usually like this - bike can do it, but rider can not, implying that only if rider would to more training, riding, watching Birch videos, whatever, they would be able to do exactly the same as Birchy on 1190.

While I of course agree that people should try to do their best to better their riding abilities throught training and practice to be safe and for me more importantly to enjoy riding to the fullest, the reality is that at the age most people on this thread are, there is distinct cap of how much they can improve. I started riding at 28 (i.e. late) and now at 46 if I'm pretty sure that if I spent the rest of my life riding/training every day, I'm not going to get anywhere close to Birch level. In others words in this bike/rider equation the rider and his/her ability are more or less given (with some wiggle room for improvement) and the bike is variable. So if one wants to maximize their enjoyment of biking (and let's face it, biking in the west is mostly about enjoyment) starting where they are in terms of their riding abilities, its much easier to achieve that by chosing a bike that is going to facilitate that as much as possible, rather than hinder it (because of weight, price, lack of crashability, etc.). And if one progresses to the point where they feel ready/need to master something bigger, it is again very easy swap the bike for something else.
Quick history , been riding 35 years , did circuit racing for 10 years and off road enduro for 6 , along the way I was an advanced riding instructor at Killarney for 12 years as well as an off road instructor at one of the companies where I was employed . Can I ride , yes , am I a riding god , not at all , but I do have years of experience and I am more than willing to pass that on .
I know this personally because I have been there and done it - made all the mistakes. Starting at too big bikes, being scared most of the time and hating other people who could throw those bikes around like bicycle, and eventually gradually moved down to smaller bikes, that allow me even with my admitedly very average at best riding abilities, explore where most don't dare to go. People complain here about windgat riders who are not aware about their riding limitations (and sure enough there are plenty), but for me this whole 'ego' thingy starts already at the beginning when buying bike, True , and greedy salesmen wanting to make the most commission don't help either when people are not honest with themselves about their abilities, and often buy bikes that then hinder them in their riding. I remember on our Kaokoland RR somebody commented that he wished he was 10 years younger so that he can do the trip. When we checked how old he was it turned out he was the same age as Straatkat who was on the trip. By chosing right bike for his riding capabilities and expected riding terrain, Straatkat was able to enjoy a trip some of his contemporaries possibly with even better riding ability (Bertie is roadie, and started riding dirt only relatively recently)

Unlike 2SD, this is not a blanket rant against big bikes. Those bikes have their place and are best fit for majority of people who just want to tour, probably with pillion and at max stick to the good dirt roads. Nothing wrong with that and it will always be the biggest part of adv market. However judging by so many condescending comments here about powerslides and wheelies (I cannot wheelie, but I can lift front wheel in a pinch), both of which are absolutely basic skills required for dirt riding IMO (and that is why they are taught on those training academies - e.g. Countrytrax or BMW course in germany both of which I did), it seems to me that there might be a little misguided jelausy running underneath here. Not at all , all too often these windgat riders I refer to feel they need to do these things all the time while not in full control , and in so doing endangering others . These are the windgat type I am referring to , they are showing off , trying to prove something , all too often others are hurt . By the same token there is nothing as beautiful as watching a skilled rider travelling along trail , be they sliding or not .  Just because you ride on Supertenere or any other big bike so slow that your rear wheel never slides a bit in dirt (that must be actually pretty difficult), doesn't mean that somebody riding let's say DR/XT/690 significantly faster with their tail wagging is windgat. They may indeed be riding much safer than you are (I remember how terrified I used to be when the rear wheel slipped just a little - I was attempting to achieve the same amount of grip and stability on dirt as on tar, which cannot be done).

To wrap up this long drivel and provide some very rough guide for bike selection from riding enjoyment and self improvement perspective - in my experience it is much better to ride a bike (where one prefers to ride) where one can use 80% of bikes capabilities (at their current skill level) - i.e. closer to bikes limit, than ride a bike when one barely scratches 30% of bike capabilities. It also helps if the rider stays within their limits To use very crude example, if normal people like me would get a chance to drive Ferari and Ford Fiesta 1.0 Ecoboost, most people would enjoy the Ford imensely more.

Sorry for long drivel, got carried away.
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Partyranger on January 20, 2019, 04:05:12 pm
Well I have read a lot of posts and wanted to reply to a few as quotes however I think Xpat sums things up quite well.

The only way to learn how to ride better is to push the limits a little at times.
I too can ride at 20% of my skills which means sitting at 25km/h on the dirt.
Will that teach me how to increase my riding skill in order to (in future) ride at 50% of my skills?

I enjoy doing the odd power slide and riding at 70-90% of my skill. 
I also love scaring myself a little, adrenaline is a drug.

To me it does not feel like I am reckless but I am doing what I enjoy.
I am sorry if that offends some slower guys but often feel frustrated by having to do 20km/h because someone else feel that they are being safe and responsible.

Different strokes for different folks and that is where riding groups are best when skills and riding styles are matched.
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Omninorm on January 20, 2019, 04:31:10 pm
Why do I feel a “So in light of a poll and a seemingly need for training XYZ will be providing trading - cost X amount” thread coming up soon?

Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Dux on January 20, 2019, 05:53:02 pm
It was done out of curiosity , both for myself and that of a few friends , for the record I have already done training days and it was done at the request of some riders and clients , whatever financial gain was made was minimal , but the aim was not to make a living out of training after all I have the workshop for that , I am trying to pass on some of my knowledge to others and hopefully in the process I can improve some people's riding abilities .
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Dux on January 20, 2019, 05:58:19 pm
Well I have read a lot of posts and wanted to reply to a few as quotes however I think Xpat sums things up quite well.

The only way to learn how to ride better is to push the limits a little at times.
I too can ride at 20% of my skills which means sitting at 25km/h on the dirt.
Will that teach me how to increase my riding skill in order to (in future) ride at 50% of my skills?

I enjoy doing the odd power slide and riding at 70-90% of my skill. 
I also love scaring myself a little, adrenaline is a drug.

To me it does not feel like I am reckless but I am doing what I enjoy.
I am sorry if that offends some slower guys but often feel frustrated by having to do 20km/h because someone else feel that they are being safe and responsible.

Different strokes for different folks and that is where riding groups are best when skills and riding styles are matched.

Don't get me wrong , I find nothing wrong with people sliding around , wheelying , and generally riding hard , there is a time and place for that and I have had weekends riding with some of my friends where we have done all of the above while riding a metre apart from each other the whole time . But we all know each others riding abilities . The windgat type I am referring are those that will tend to ride with slower , less experienced riders while 'showing' off their abilities and in the process being a danger to others .
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Robin Brown on January 20, 2019, 06:12:07 pm
Who is stupid enough to want to fall????
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Ri on January 20, 2019, 06:25:02 pm
 :-[
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Kortbroek on January 20, 2019, 06:28:28 pm
Why do I feel a “So in light of a poll and a seemingly need for training XYZ will be providing trading - cost X amount” thread coming up soon?
So what if someone wants to do that? I see zero problem with forum vendors getting input on possible business ideas here. Judging from your post you do?

Sent from my BV6000 using Tapatalk

Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Dux on January 20, 2019, 06:33:00 pm
Who is stupid enough to want to fall????

Stupidity has no limits does it ?  :biggrin:
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Omninorm on January 20, 2019, 07:45:14 pm
Why do I feel a “So in light of a poll and a seemingly need for training XYZ will be providing trading - cost X amount” thread coming up soon?
So what if someone wants to do that? I see zero problem with forum vendors getting input on possible business ideas here. Judging from your post you do?

Sent from my BV6000 using Tapatalk

Your judgement is incorrect sir!
I don’t see a problem with it at all. There is never enough to learn!
It was merely an observation from the history of these types of polls.

Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Kortbroek on January 20, 2019, 08:02:46 pm
Why do I feel a “So in light of a poll and a seemingly need for training XYZ will be providing trading - cost X amount” thread coming up soon?
So what if someone wants to do that? I see zero problem with forum vendors getting input on possible business ideas here. Judging from your post you do?

Sent from my BV6000 using Tapatalk

Your judgement is incorrect sir!
I don’t see a problem with it at all. There is never enough to learn!
It was merely an observation from the history of these types of polls.
Haha fair enough.

Sent from my BV6000 using Tapatalk

Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Mpandla on January 21, 2019, 07:44:22 am

Don't get me wrong , I find nothing wrong with people sliding around , wheelying , and generally riding hard , there is a time and place for that and I have had weekends riding with some of my friends where we have done all of the above while riding a metre apart from each other the whole time . But we all know each others riding abilities . The windgat type I am referring are those that will tend to ride with slower , less experienced riders while 'showing' off their abilities and in the process being a danger to others .

This is what bothers me. But you learn to spot them. The ones that will pull away from the group, spraying everyone with dust and rocks. Powersliding every single corner or non corner, to show off to the newbies. But as your own skills grow, you start to realize the complete lack of skills on their part.
But then at a break, a novice will look at them and think.. mm.. I must ask them for advice as they go faster. And some of the advice they give is shocking!
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Dux on January 21, 2019, 07:57:12 am

Don't get me wrong , I find nothing wrong with people sliding around , wheelying , and generally riding hard , there is a time and place for that and I have had weekends riding with some of my friends where we have done all of the above while riding a metre apart from each other the whole time . But we all know each others riding abilities . The windgat type I am referring are those that will tend to ride with slower , less experienced riders while 'showing' off their abilities and in the process being a danger to others .

This is what bothers me. But you learn to spot them. The ones that will pull away from the group, spraying everyone with dust and rocks. Powersliding every single corner or non corner, to show off to the newbies. But as your own skills grow, you start to realize the complete lack of skills on their part.
But then at a break, a novice will look at them and think.. mm.. I must ask them for advice as they go faster. And some of the advice they give is shocking!

Exactly , scary isn't it
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Dwerg on January 21, 2019, 08:43:46 am
.
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: jaybiker on January 21, 2019, 09:22:54 am
This may be shocking advice to novices, but it is the benefit of my own real world experience.

One way to gain experience is to fall off and hurt yourself. Either physically and/or financially.

While it won't guarantee that you won't do it again, each successive  time drives home the lesson that caution is the better part of exuberance. :3some:
Title: Re: Riding experience and riding abilities
Post by: Mikerider on January 25, 2019, 02:13:35 pm
My parents bought me my 1st bike, a Suzuki GT50 when I was 15. They only had one condition...this had to be my 1st and last bike. Fast forward 40 years and 13 bikes... I have never been without a bike since that day  >:D.

I do way too little gravel road trips. We keep talking about it but life keeps happening and the next trip never seems to materialise. I hate commuting, it kills my love of riding but I hate the damn Cape Town traffic more  :dousing:. The crappy part is, my wife commutes with me on the bike so there is even more pressure to not leave our kids motherless or fatherless.

Only had 2 wipe-outs, both on tar. Fist one with that Suzuki GT50 around a corner  :(. Slow puncture in front wheel that I did not notice. Tar swallowed my ass just wearing T-shirt shorts and plakkies  ::). Second time with the F650GS I had. Hitting a traffic circle at the usual speed not taking into account the new tires fitted the day before. Full gear, no issues, just a bruised body and ego...