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Old 10-01-2010, 07:33 PM   #1
H4nn1
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highway driving

took the bike to work today, (first time on the freeway), and boy was I nervous. I've had the bike maybe two weeks and I only do a nine minute inside road commute to UH and back (old spanish trail) and hopping on the freeway to go to work (610->I10) was scary. I was taking it slow today too but traffic was going fast so I had to keep up and I had my little R6 push 91 mph. I slowed down though because I was so nervous. my helmet may be too big on me I'm not entirely sure. I wear a medium Shark RSI helmet and it fits extra snug on my face but the wind rapes me, I mean if I'm riding over 60 and I turn my head, feels like the helmet is about to come off. anyone have any freeway tips? I'm trying to use my r6 as my daily because I'm commuting like 400 miles weekly, from work to school.

p.s. I learned to never try to brake hard while engine braking because some guy cut me off today as I was doing that I almost lost control. good first day all in all though just gotta be more careful
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Old 10-01-2010, 07:40 PM   #2
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Your helmet should fit snugly on your face, and it shouldn't move around too much even at highway speeds

If noise is a problem, wear earplugs. I do that for long highway trips.
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Old 10-01-2010, 07:49 PM   #3
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I used to ride an hour to work and one and a half hours in rush hour traffic.

My tips:

Get headphones. Having music playing relaxes me. Loud enough to hear but not loud enough to drown out the around you.

Get a high quality helmet. I had a cheap 7oh7 helmet and the wind made my head feel like a lead weight. Get a good helmet and its super light. Feels like you are squiding it when you really arent.

Get low. The higher the chest the more surface area the wind hits against.


These are MY TIPS. Didn't say you had to listen to me and I never said I was a pro. Just what works for me
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Old 10-01-2010, 08:23 PM   #4
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Old 10-01-2010, 08:29 PM   #5
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Try to relax and enjoy the ride and get ear plugs. It makes a world of a differences. Plus it's good for your hearing in the future too
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Old 10-01-2010, 08:31 PM   #6
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Old 10-01-2010, 08:38 PM   #7
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Old 10-01-2010, 08:40 PM   #8
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yeah I took msf at awesome cycles late july. should I size down on my helmet? it fits snug already but at high speeds it feels loose. I'm currently looking at the scorpion exo-1000.

oh and about lane splitting, it's not legal is it?
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Old 10-01-2010, 08:44 PM   #9
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oh and about lane splitting, it's not legal is it?
No, it's not.
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Old 10-01-2010, 08:44 PM   #10
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1. msf if you dont have it.
2. stay off highways during rush hour times until ready
3. learn proper brake control
4. headphone are a must or earplugs
5. always and i mean ALWAYS be aware of the other people around you.

also at higher speeds any helmet can feel like its about to be ripped off if you turn your head the right way and the wind catches underneth. make sure to strap your chin strap i see people all the time with it unstrapped.
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Old 10-01-2010, 09:14 PM   #11
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When you say you almost lost control when braking, were you using the rear brake? If so, don't. If you do, use it very gently.

Don't ride outside your comfort zone.

+1 on chinstrap for helmet

Mudbug said always have an out. This is very true!

If you're in thick traffic on the freeway, stay in the far left or right lane and ride the solid yellow or white line (assuming you have a decent shoulder to work with). That way it would take you no time at all to avoid anything that might happen.

Try to relax, but don't zone out.
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Old 10-01-2010, 09:22 PM   #12
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Quote:
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Ride a few clicks faster than traffic.

Don't be scared.

Learn to safely lane split.

Never ever pace anyone.

Always, and I mean always have a way out.
that sums it up for you + if you feel like "cruise chilling" then do it ONLY when there lil to no cars.
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Old 10-01-2010, 09:27 PM   #13
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Quote:
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When you say you almost lost control when braking, were you using the rear brake? If so, don't. If you do, use it very gently.

Don't ride outside your comfort zone.

+1 on chinstrap for helmet

Mudbug said always have an out. This is very true!

If you're in thick traffic on the freeway, stay in the far left or right lane and ride the solid yellow or white line (assuming you have a decent shoulder to work with). That way it would take you no time at all to avoid anything that might happen.

Try to relax, but don't zone out.


++++ 11111

95 % of your brakeing is done with the front brakes dont follow to close and always stay a little above the pace of trafic, but honestly stay off Houston's HWy's for at least another couple of months you need practice and some hours under your belt before you hit the freeway

just becasue it sounds like you where definatly out of your comfort zone wait until 90 dosent feel so fast
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Old 10-01-2010, 09:45 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MudBug View Post
Ride a few clicks faster than traffic.

Don't be scared.

Learn to safely lane split.

Never ever pace anyone.

Always, and I mean always have a way out.
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Old 10-01-2010, 10:01 PM   #15
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Old 10-01-2010, 10:17 PM   #16
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I've been riding for a year. Take your time before hitting the high way. The only highway I go on is 288 going to MRSH. I still get a little nervous, but I watch everyone around me and I always look to make sure I have a way out.
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Old 10-01-2010, 10:30 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by H4nn1 View Post
took the bike to work today, (first time on the freeway), and boy was I nervous. I've had the bike maybe two weeks and I only do a nine minute inside road commute to UH and back (old spanish trail) and hopping on the freeway to go to work (610->I10) was scary. I was taking it slow today too but traffic was going fast so I had to keep up and I had my little R6 push 91 mph. I slowed down though because I was so nervous. my helmet may be too big on me I'm not entirely sure. I wear a medium Shark RSI helmet and it fits extra snug on my face but the wind rapes me, I mean if I'm riding over 60 and I turn my head, feels like the helmet is about to come off. anyone have any freeway tips? I'm trying to use my r6 as my daily because I'm commuting like 400 miles weekly, from work to school.

p.s. I learned to never try to brake hard while engine braking because some guy cut me off today as I was doing that I almost lost control. good first day all in all though just gotta be more careful
RELAX! Practice where there is no traffic so you're more comfortable. I used to feel the exact same way, now I'm comfortable with one hand at double the speed limit. (don't flame me, you do it too) The fear WILL go away. don't learn to ride the hard way, take your time
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Old 10-01-2010, 10:35 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yeraboof View Post
[SIZE=2]
If you're in thick traffic on the freeway, stay in the far left or right lane and ride the solid yellow or white line (assuming you have a decent shoulder to work with). That way it would take you no time at all to avoid anything that might happen.
I disagree with this statement. Though I should say I did believe this to be safer when I first started riding in traffic (staying as far from the danger as possible), I quickly learned the error of this theory after constantly dealing with people coming over on me.

I now find this a sure way to get your scooshy pink smashed and ground into the cheezegrateresque pavement. My recommendation is to be in those lanes, but make sure you can be seen.

When a cager is about to change lanes they often, very briefly, check their side mirrors to see if a car is behind the car next to them. If they see a space they will slow down and jerk the wheel over to cut into the "empty" space they saw. THEN they may or may not see you in time to not run you over. Plan on them never looking again.

To be seen ride behind the car in front and occupy the pavement directly behind the tires closest to the lane of greatest danger. What I mean is that if you are in the outside lanes (left or right) be on the inner side of the lane. If you have to be in the center lanes you have to do a little more work. Figure out which yahoos are most likely to come over and scrunch you (probably the slower moving adjacent lane).

One trick I use is to watch for cars ahead that have jumped lanes quickly without signaling. If they make those kind of idiotic maneuvers they are more likely to do it with your (did I mention?) squooshy self in the lane they so desperately desire to be in.

Also watch heads and tires. Drivers heads often swivel momentarily to check to their side before jumping lanes. THEY WILL NOT SEE YOU WHEN THEY DO THIS. So watch out and take evasive action. The tires will often be the only warning you will get before a car comes over into your lane. The car may do one or both of the following: do a " wiggle" (that's what my wife calls it) were the car will shake during a preemptive movement or they may just drift till the tires are on the line. Either of these often signify the jerk will jerk into your lane.

Another one to watch out for is someone matching the speed of the car in front of you. They will position themselves with their front tire near the rear tire of the car in front of you. If you see this and the "danger" car slows down rapidly expect them to cut over on top of you. Whether the slow down is due to traffic or not.

I do agree to always have an out. I also find acceleration and dodging work better for two wheels than hard braking. Both of my "get offs" were from too much brake application. These strategies have been honed during my 60,000 miles of only rush hour Houston commuting (Galveston to med center).

Please get some practice as we don't need or want to read a rider down thread for you. For brake practice I recommend using those hard braking drills that you should have learned in the MSF course.

Good luck.
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Old 10-01-2010, 10:36 PM   #19
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Quote:
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Always, and I mean always have a way out.

Excellent Advice +1
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