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 Swerve Steering

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Dale N.
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PostSubject: Swerve Steering   Wed Sep 10, 2014 9:40 pm

Hi All,

I don't know if any, or how many, of you have ever heard of "Swerve Steering".

I learned about it YEARS ago while I was young and just starting to ride. I have never had an accident while doing this but it does take practice. I learned about it in an article in a motorcycle magazine and figured I'd give it a try. To my amazement it actually worked.

Anyway, how it works is that if you have to swerve to miss an object and need to swerve to the right you push on the right handlebar grip. This turns the front wheel to the left but causes the bike to lean and swerve to the right. Same thing if you need to swerve to the left. Push on the left handlebar and the bike will lean and swerve to the left. The harder you push the harder and faster it will swerve so be careful at first.

What happens is that the front wheel will start to go to the right if you are swerving to the left but with the swerve technique the bike will actually lean left and swerve to the left. It only takes a split second to accomplish this and it is faster than trying to lean the bike to the left to avoid something. It takes a bit of practice to get any good at it and to feel comfortable with it. Start out maybe in a fairly empty parking lot, with no sand, and start out slowly. It doesn't take much pushing on the handlebar to get it to swerve so be careful.

Start out with very slight pushes to get the feel of it. As you get more confident with it you can increase your speed and pushing on the handlebar to swerve harder.
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SteveO
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PostSubject: Re: Swerve Steering   Wed Sep 10, 2014 10:02 pm

I believe that is called counter steering. There are a lot of papers written on this subject.
Thanks Dale for bringing it up. It is a good defensive tool to have in your bag.

Steve
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exavid
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PostSubject: Re: Swerve Steering   Thu Sep 11, 2014 12:40 am

Anyone who has ridden a bicycle has counter steered. You may not notice it but all tandem two wheeled vehicles be it a 16" kiddy bike or any other that's the way they steer. On a bicycle most people done notice it because the transition speed from direct steering to counter steering happens at a very slow speed. Try it on a bicycle. Go real slow barely rolling and make a left turn. Which way did you turn the handlebars. Now go at a brisk pace and make the same left turn. The handle bars aren't going to turn the same direction they did at the very low speed. Same with motorcycles. At parking lot speeds most motorcycles will direct steer in other words you turn the forks in the direction you want to turn. At slightly higher speed you'll turn the forks the opposite way from the turn. i.e. slow speed push on the right bar to go left. Higher speed push on the left bar to go left. It's funny, everyone who's been on a bicycle has been steering just the same way as a motorcycle but it's more noticeable on the powered bike. Be careful of overthinking this stuff or you'll find yourself having an accident when turning.

The "Ride Like a Pro" videos are excellent. You'll have to modifiy the technique a bit since the SW doesn't have a clutch but using a fixed throttle setting and controlling speed with the rear brake at low speeds will do wonders for slow speed maneuvering. You can go to this link or search on YouTube for Jerry Palladino's videos, great stuff. I used his techniques to sharpen up my bike skills on my Goldwing to the point I could do lock to lock figure eights on my GW with my wife on the pillion. Circles with the handlebars all over against the stops were impossible until I practiced his method of using the rear brake for speed control.

https://www.ridelikeapro.com/
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wzN4Y-C0tL8
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PostSubject: Re: Swerve Steering   Thu Sep 11, 2014 6:37 am

exavid wrote:

The "Ride Like a Pro" videos are excellent. You'll have to modifiy the technique a bit since the SW doesn't have a clutch but using a fixed throttle setting and controlling speed with the rear brake at low speeds will do wonders for slow speed maneuvering. You can go to this link or search on YouTube for Jerry Palladino's videos, great stuff. I used his techniques to sharpen up my bike skills on my Goldwing to the point I could do lock to lock figure eights on my GW with my wife on the pillion. Circles with the handlebars all over against the stops were impossible until I practiced his method of using the rear brake for speed control.

https://www.ridelikeapro.com/
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wzN4Y-C0tL8

You will need to modify by more than just allowing for the Swings lack of clutch,the use of the just the rear brake for speed control isn't going to work "properly" either,as it has linked front & rear brakes.
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exavid
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PostSubject: Re: Swerve Steering   Thu Sep 11, 2014 1:05 pm

Goldwings have linked brakes as well and the technique still works. Linked or not it works well if you use light brake pressure. The linked rear brake is biased toward the rear brake until you increase pressure on the brake lever.
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billc.
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PostSubject: Re: Swerve Steering   Thu Sep 11, 2014 1:54 pm

I believe the Silverwing brake ratio for the left hand brake lever is 70% rear brake, 30% front brake
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SteveO
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PostSubject: Re: Swerve Steering   Thu Sep 11, 2014 2:50 pm

I use the Ride Like a Pro method on all my prior cycles, now with the Swing I do the same but the key is to keep enough RPMs so the clutch stays engaged while controlling the speed with the rear break. Slow speed lock to lock turns are a snap.

SteveO
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Dimond
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PostSubject: Re: Swerve Steering   Fri Sep 12, 2014 3:47 pm

SteveO wrote:
Slow speed lock to lock turns are a snap.
SteveO
Thanks for this input Steve. I can't (yet) do lock-to-lock turns but am slowly getting better with U-Turns and knowing this can be done on a SWing is great encourgement for me to try and improve.

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cotetoi
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PostSubject: Re: Swerve Steering   Sat Sep 13, 2014 8:13 am

I miss the clutch in slow speed maneuvering. You have to keep the revs up, and finesse the rear brake. I try to practice as much s possible in a parking lot, and after a few months, I am still having difficulties with it. On my ACE, I could do lock to lock turns in a week.
Dale was talking about countersteering in the original post. I practiced it on my sofa. Look where you want to go and push that arm and shoulder out in that direction., and don't forget to lean while keeping your line of vision level, and you do that by keeping your eyes horizontal: In a left hander, your chin moves to the left, and right for a right hander. This last part is really important. You don't want to look at the road from an angle. Alternate sides and practice until your look and push and lean happen smoothly.
When you ride a bicycle at speed into a bend, you do this manouver automatically.
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