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Author Topic: Cornering - countersteer (The Myth)  (Read 3920 times)

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Offline Weedkiller - Adie

Cornering - countersteer (The Myth)
« on: August 18, 2014, 05:16:57 pm »
Ok, I could not find a thread to 'explain' cornering on a bike - so hier gaan ons!!


Just to start off: a lot of you will think this is BULL but go and analyse/think/etc/etc.  Also Tar and Gravel use OPPOSITE TURNING TECHNIQUES.

Tar

Counter steering is ONLY USED TO 'INDUCE' THE TURN!!!!  Once you reach the desired 'curve' the bars MUST come back to NEUTRAL. (You can actually stay on course just by adjusting the throttle Surprised )

Changing direction on a bike is totally opposite from riding a car and almost EXACTLY the same as flying a plane. YOU DO NOT STEER AROUND A CORNER/BEND!!!!!!!!!!! You induce a change in 'attitude' of the bike. This new 'attitude' (lean for a bike) will change the contact patch from the center of the front Tyre (neutral straight) to somewhere on the side (neutral curve) (depending on how much you lean).  From this moment onward the bike (or plane) must just be kept in the same 'attitude' to maintain the desired radius. To end the turn you need to change attitude again to 'lift' the bike up and return to 'straight ahead' - again exactly like an aircraft.

I will not go into the technical jargon about how/why the radius of the turn is related to the lean angle and the speed as well as the 'profile' of the front Tyre.  What is interesting is that you actually ride 'uphill' (positive G's) during a turn on a bike and in an aircraft.

Gravel

The 'attitude' of the bike round a similar bend is much more upright and if we stand we also 'weigh the outside peg'. This require the handlebars to be turned 'into' the bend AND KEPT THERE to maintain turning radius as we do not ride 'the side' of the Tyre. You can 'power slide' through the bend to 'tighten' the radius as the rear wheel 'spin' and move outwards.  This power slide can be as minute as to move the rear wheel just 20mm to the outside with a huge effect on the turning radius.  This is also the reason why you must 'accelerate' in a turn if you realize you are to wide AND NOT DECELERATE which will 'lift' the bike up and 'pull' the rear in which will INCREASE the turning radius!!!.  Now both forces are against you. Frown  I'm not even sure you 'counter steer' to start the bend on gravel.

Plastics

This is even more 'unreal' as the whole body/bike relation is totally opposite from road riding. (heavy lean of the bike and upright body with the foot sticking out).


Food for thought.


Adie

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Offline subie

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Re: Cornering - countersteer (The Myth)
« Reply #1 on: August 18, 2014, 06:13:10 pm »
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Re: Cornering - countersteer (The Myth)
« Reply #2 on: August 18, 2014, 08:14:16 pm »
Interesting. I think cornering on dirt works exactly like on tar but I'm no expert.
 

Offline Dux

Re: Cornering - countersteer (The Myth)
« Reply #3 on: August 18, 2014, 08:18:48 pm »


Counter steering is ONLY USED TO 'INDUCE' THE TURN!!!!  Once you reach the desired 'curve' the bars MUST come back to NEUTRAL. (You can actually stay on course just by adjusting the throttle Surprised )





Gravel

The 'attitude' of the bike round a similar bend is much more upright and if we stand we also 'weigh the outside peg'. This require the handlebars to be turned 'into' the bend AND KEPT THERE to maintain turning radius as we do not ride 'the side' of the Tyre. You can 'power slide' through the bend to 'tighten' the radius as the rear wheel 'spin' and move outwards.  This power slide can be as minute as to move the rear wheel just 20mm to the outside with a huge effect on the turning radius.  This is also the reason why you must 'accelerate' in a turn if you realize you are to wide AND NOT DECELERATE which will 'lift' the bike up and 'pull' the rear in which will INCREASE the turning radius!!!.  Now both forces are against you. Frown  I'm not even sure you 'counter steer' to start the bend on gravel.

Plastics

This is even more 'unreal' as the whole body/bike relation is totally opposite from road riding. (heavy lean of the bike and upright body with the foot sticking out)


Disagree , on any terrain once the bike is doing above about 40kmh then countersteering ( turn left to go right and vice versa )  is used to initiate the turn , in slower corners then pro steering ( turn left to go left , turn right to go right ) is used , and this is irrespective of terrain .
But it also gets interesting although pretty irrelevant to us , above about 400kmh it reverts back to pro steering .
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Offline Weedkiller - Adie

Re: Cornering - countersteer (The Myth)
« Reply #4 on: August 18, 2014, 08:26:13 pm »


Counter steering is ONLY USED TO 'INDUCE' THE TURN!!!!  Once you reach the desired 'curve' the bars MUST come back to NEUTRAL. (You can actually stay on course just by adjusting the throttle Surprised )

Gravel

The 'attitude' of the bike round a similar bend is much more upright and if we stand we also 'weigh the outside peg'. This require the handlebars to be turned 'into' the bend AND KEPT THERE to maintain turning radius as we do not ride 'the side' of the Tyre. You can 'power slide' through the bend to 'tighten' the radius as the rear wheel 'spin' and move outwards.  This power slide can be as minute as to move the rear wheel just 20mm to the outside with a huge effect on the turning radius.  This is also the reason why you must 'accelerate' in a turn if you realize you are to wide AND NOT DECELERATE which will 'lift' the bike up and 'pull' the rear in which will INCREASE the turning radius!!!.  Now both forces are against you. Frown  I'm not even sure you 'counter steer' to start the bend on gravel.

Plastics

This is even more 'unreal' as the whole body/bike relation is totally opposite from road riding. (heavy lean of the bike and upright body with the foot sticking out)


Disagree , on any terrain once the bike is doing above about 40kmh then countersteering ( turn left to go right and vice versa )  is used to initiate the turn , in slower corners then pro steering ( turn left to go left , turn right to go right ) is used , and this is irrespective of terrain .
But it also gets interesting although pretty irrelevant to us , above about 400kmh it reverts back to pro steering .

Bliksem, ek moet dan leer om vinniger te ry. Na al my valle is ek maar bang om vinnig om 'n grondpad draai te gaan
 >:D
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Offline Dux

Re: Cornering - countersteer (The Myth)
« Reply #5 on: August 18, 2014, 08:31:25 pm »
In all fairness a lot of corners off road are fairly slow , or at least slower than on tar , so the pro steering will be used a lot , but once the pace increases then counter steering is used .
Don't forget that counter or pro steering can be used to adjust the bikes line through a corner as well , all depending on what is required in the situation . 
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Offline Marc D

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Cornering - countersteer (The Myth)
« Reply #6 on: August 18, 2014, 08:32:02 pm »
That's right, when momentum is minimal and the bike is still upright and therefore does not lean into a turn ,when you turn left it goes left. When it starts leaning into the turn the counter stearing starts. Check it riding with only the right hand on the throttle , left hand off handlebar. You will see the push or  pull action with your right arm and how it influences the bikes response around a corner.

On tar your weight tends to be on the inside of the bike. Ie leaning into a left bend your weight is on the left of the bike. Off road the bike leans left and your weight compensates by moving more over to the right.
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Offline Bells

Re: Cornering - countersteer (The Myth)
« Reply #7 on: August 18, 2014, 08:36:30 pm »
Good point dux, what i've noticed on my dirt bike on enduro track or dunes is that my rear normally follow the route that my front wheel is pointing.

I normally only counter steer when I'm cornering and too hard on the throttle and my rear wheel starts drifting


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Offline Dux

Re: Cornering - countersteer (The Myth)
« Reply #8 on: August 18, 2014, 08:46:17 pm »
Good point dux, what i've noticed on my dirt bike on enduro track or dunes is that my rear normally follow the route that my front wheel is pointing.

I normally only counter steer when I'm cornering and too hard on the throttle and my rear wheel starts drifting


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I will explain the whole countersteering thing in more detail when you are back in town , it is really simple and we all do it anyway , the secret is knowing when and how to use it .
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Offline Bells

Re: Cornering - countersteer (The Myth)
« Reply #9 on: August 18, 2014, 09:04:28 pm »
Sounds like a conversation i would like. See you in a couple of weeks then


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Offline Road Hog

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Re: Cornering - countersteer (The Myth)
« Reply #10 on: August 18, 2014, 09:19:44 pm »
Good point dux, what i've noticed on my dirt bike on enduro track or dunes is that my rear normally follow the route that my front wheel is pointing.

I normally only counter steer when I'm cornering and too hard on the throttle and my rear wheel starts drifting


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I will explain the whole countersteering thing in more detail when you are back in town , it is really simple and we all do it anyway , the secret is knowing when and how to use it .

Sorry I can't make it, you will have to make it public. I also want to understand the concept.
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Offline Bells

Re: Cornering - countersteer (The Myth)
« Reply #11 on: August 18, 2014, 09:40:29 pm »
Haha no pressure


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Offline alanB

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Re: Cornering - countersteer (The Myth)
« Reply #12 on: August 18, 2014, 09:44:11 pm »
Its actually all about momentum.

At a certain speed, the bike stops following the front wheel and starts pushing it.  

At that point you need to counter steer.

Counter steering makes the bike lean over in the opposite direction to where the wheel is pointed (as long as the bike is pushing the front wheel) and that initiates the turn, once the turn is initiated you can centre the steering to go round the corner while leaning over. Its the leaning that makes the bike turn (a cone will always roll in a circle).

Its all academic because your brain works this all out in a few minutes after you first start riding a bicycle, and you do it automatically from then on.

The only difference between gravel and tar, is that on tar you have lots of traction and thus can hang off the inside of the bike to turn faster - doing that on gravel will just pull the bike off its wheels in most cases.  

On gravel you lean the bike over while staying roughly above the contact point where the wheels touch the ground, so if the bike slides, you slide with it and you don't just fall off.

Understanding this is easy - doing it at high speed over rough terrain is a bit harder  :P :biggrin:
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Offline Africanskyblue

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Re: Cornering - countersteer (The Myth)
« Reply #13 on: August 18, 2014, 09:51:33 pm »
Keith Code has a very good DVD bout the subject, also wrote abook..twist of the wrist. Worth a look.
 

Offline Weedkiller - Adie

Re: Cornering - countersteer (The Myth)
« Reply #14 on: August 18, 2014, 10:46:50 pm »

The point I tried to make is that counter steering is only to INDUCE the turn (probably more than 90% of the time). From then on many other 'forces' control the radius.

AND

there is a difference in cornering technique between Tar, Gravel. (Tar = weight inside, Gravel = weight over and MX ??)  Also difference in maintaining the radius.

alanB echoed what I meant.
** Its the leaning that makes the bike turn (a cone will always roll in a circle). **

** Snip**
I normally only counter steer when I'm cornering and too hard on the throttle and my rear wheel starts drifting
**Snap**
Bells, I might be wrong but don't think that is counter steering (as per normal cornering initiation) anymore. that is just one option to maintain radius. The bike will roughly go in the 'general' direction of the front wheel and me thinks you are basically correcting 'oversteer' ??

Probably the biggest 'mystery' of counter steering is that it is so subtle and we do it instinctively that it become hard to explain/understand. I always suggest to 'non believers' to enter a traffic circle from the center line and exit at 90 degree at various speeds. They immediately understand the principle. (the faster you go the bigger the counter steer)

For the track racers out there:
How much does your weight shift in a S influence the amount of counter steer? Is that why you lift your bum off the seat to reduce sideways momentum during direction change?


Dit is fasinerend.  Ek probeer altyd kyk tot op watter spoed kan ek tussen die kat oŽ op 'n teerpad vleg sonder om hulle te raak.  Met my Dakar kon ek to 125kph vleg. Met die 1200GS her ek nog net tot 110 gekom. (nog nie te hard probeer)  Dit is ook 'n ekstreme toepassing van counter steer en die momentum en giroskopiese efek van die wiele en fiets.

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Offline Airguitar

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Re: Cornering - countersteer (The Myth)
« Reply #15 on: August 18, 2014, 11:39:05 pm »
According to my understanding, counter steering IN THE TURN only occurs (on dirt and street bikes alike) when the rotational speed of the rear wheel exceeds that of the front wheel, ie. the rear wheel is spinning.
Rear wheel traction and some directional control is then controlled by throttle action whilst front wheel traction and main directional control is achieved by turning the handlebars.
Watch some speedway videos on youtube.

Counter steering when entering a turn, (ie making the bike lean over for the turn) is always achieved by an initial amount of counter-steering. This is achieved because of the gyroscopic effect on the front wheel.
The law of a gyroscope is that any force acting on the edge of the disc to deflect it will translate through 90 degrees in the direction of the spin. Therefore twitching the handlebars to the left is the equivalent of applying a force from the left hand edge of the wheel behind the axle. This force then rotates through 90 degrees and "exits" the wheel at the 12 O'clock position, forcing the bike to roll over to the right.
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Offline hugh101

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Re: Cornering - countersteer (The Myth)
« Reply #16 on: August 19, 2014, 05:42:00 am »
Keith Code has a very good DVD bout the subject, also wrote abook..twist of the wrist. Worth a look.


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Offline alanB

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Re: Cornering - countersteer (The Myth)
« Reply #17 on: August 19, 2014, 06:48:07 am »
According to my understanding, counter steering IN THE TURN only occurs (on dirt and street bikes alike) when the rotational speed of the rear wheel exceeds that of the front wheel, ie. the rear wheel is spinning.
Rear wheel traction and some directional control is then controlled by throttle action whilst front wheel traction and main directional control is achieved by turning the handlebars.
Watch some speedway videos on youtube.

Counter steering when entering a turn, (ie making the bike lean over for the turn) is always achieved by an initial amount of counter-steering. This is achieved because of the gyroscopic effect on the front wheel.
The law of a gyroscope is that any force acting on the edge of the disc to deflect it will translate through 90 degrees in the direction of the spin. Therefore twitching the handlebars to the left is the equivalent of applying a force from the left hand edge of the wheel behind the axle. This force then rotates through 90 degrees and "exits" the wheel at the 12 O'clock position, forcing the bike to roll over to the right.

I dont think gyroscopic forces play a role in counter steering personally, although it is a popular conception.

Its more to do with the rake and trail of the forks.  When you turn the bars the contact patch of the front tyre moves off centre in that direction.  If the bike is no longer following the front wheel but pushing it, it will tend to fall over in the opposite direction.

Also I dont think counter steering requires that the back wheel is spinning - although that can make the whole process a lot more exciting  :biggrin:
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Offline silvrav

Re: Cornering - countersteer (The Myth)
« Reply #18 on: August 19, 2014, 07:02:22 am »
Good point dux, what i've noticed on my dirt bike on enduro track or dunes is that my rear normally follow the route that my front wheel is pointing.

I normally only counter steer when I'm cornering and too hard on the throttle and my rear wheel starts drifting


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

I will explain the whole countersteering thing in more detail when you are back in town , it is really simple and we all do it anyway , the secret is knowing when and how to use it .

Best words spoken on this thread.... as Dux indicated we all do it, albeit on a subconscious level. It becomes a great asset and advantage once you use to it and can do it consciously.
 

Offline Dux

Re: Cornering - countersteer (The Myth)
« Reply #19 on: August 19, 2014, 07:13:57 am »
According to my understanding, counter steering IN THE TURN only occurs (on dirt and street bikes alike) when the rotational speed of the rear wheel exceeds that of the front wheel, ie. the rear wheel is spinning. Nope , not at all , it has to do with the speed of the front wheel , as I mentioned above about 40kmh counter steering starts working
Rear wheel traction and some directional control is then controlled by throttle action whilst front wheel traction and main directional control is achieved by turning the handlebars.Even though the rear wheel may be very sideways the direction is still controlled by the front wheel .
Watch some speedway videos on youtube.

Counter steering when entering a turn, (ie making the bike lean over for the turn) is always achieved by an initial amount of counter-steering. This is achieved because of the gyroscopic effect on the front wheel.
The law of a gyroscope is that any force acting on the edge of the disc to deflect it will translate through 90 degrees in the direction of the spin. Therefore twitching the handlebars to the left is the equivalent of applying a force from the left hand edge of the wheel behind the axle. This force then rotates through 90 degrees and "exits" the wheel at the 12 O'clock position, forcing the bike to roll over to the right.

I dont think gyroscopic forces play a role in counter steering personally, although it is a popular conception.
Wrong , the gyroscopic force is what causes the counter steering , if that weren't the case then we would use pro steering to turn into any corner at any speed . Take a bicycle wheel and hold it on the axles with your arms in front of you , get someone to spin the wheel , once it is spinning pull your right hand toward yourself , the wheel will fall over to the left , this is called gyroscopic precession and is the basic concept behind counter steering .

Its more to do with the rake and trail of the forks.  When you turn the bars the contact patch of the front tyre moves off centre in that direction.  If the bike is no longer following the front wheel but pushing it, it will tend to fall over in the opposite direction.
The rake and trail will determine the bikes rate of turn , stability and self centering action , so a superbike with steep rake and minimal trail will turn into corners very quickly compared to a cruiser with lots of rake and trail , the downside is that the superbike will be more prone to tankslapping compared to the cruiser .

Also I dont think counter steering requires that the back wheel is spinning - although that can make the whole process a lot more exciting  :biggrin:
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