Give your Closest Call Story.... - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 03-11-2009, 04:36 AM Thread Starter
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Location: Bukit Mertajam,Penang,Malaysia
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Smile Give your Closest Call Story....

Greeting V Bikers,

To add on Atgatt excellent thread "Give your worst riding day story"

Here's titled Give your Closest Call Story....

Though I had a few close calls I can imagined one so vividly and tell myself “What if”.
This was a leisure trip down with my brother from Penang to Singapore. Total distance about 650 kilometers (390 miles). This happened about 8 years ago.
Had checked my air pressure before leaving my home when it was cold and it was as recommended. Weather was dry and good most of the way. Was riding my BMW R1100gs with my brother as pillion.
At around the 400 km (240 mile) mark I suddenly felt something was not right.
The bike felt only wanting to go straight and was unable to lean. I tried leaning and even counter steering slowly on the bike.
I guess my brother on the back was thinking WTF.
Didn’t wait long and slowed down to a halt at the side of the highway. I asked my brother to get off and I made a close inspection to the suspension and tires.
Nothing was amiss. Everything seemed ok and there was no burned smell or anything.
Satisfied, me and my bro got back on and were ready to go.

Just as I moved the throttle slowly to take off, we did not move an inch.
I looked down and found my rear tire carcass have totally ripped itself off from the rim. You could rotate the torn tire 360 degrees in the rim. There was no sound, no nothing.

I was then sh..tting in my pants thinking what could have happened. I had been cruising about 130-140km/h (81-87 miles/hr) most of the time. (110km/h/68 miles/hr is the Malaysian highway speed limit) If the tires went while riding at even the speed limits, my bro and me would have 100% be gone in the wind.
We then waited for 4 hours for help (my dad) to arrive.
My dad called a fellow biker from my town. He simply took off his rear gs tire and gave it to my dad.

Lessons Learned.

• It’s good to have as many friends as possible. Good ones are God send.
• Found out that the tire in question was 3 years old when I bought it.

Truth is I knew Nuts about tires then. Since then I try always to see the tire manufacture date on the sidewall. It was wrong to assume anything. ASSUME makes an ASS out of U and ME. And I nearly became the ASS. It would be OK if I went ahead up there but I would not accept if my brother came along.

Thank you and Ride Safe.
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 03-11-2009, 08:24 AM
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I think my closest shave would have been one day riding to work along the Ipswich Motorway. This particular section of the motorway was 2 lanes, with the guardrail right up against the right side of the right lane ie virtually no run off. Here in Australia we drive on the left side of the road.

I was in the right lane riding in the traffic on my SV650, doing about 100km/h, cars in front and behind of me. There was a big white 4WD in the lane next to me, and a white van in front of it (in the left lane).

Suddenly I heard a bang and felt something hit my chest, and the next few seconds seemed to go into slow motion... I saw the van swerve right and left (it had a massive blow out), and in the corner of my eye saw the big white 4WD merge into my lane. Heard tyres screeching behind me as I swerved to the right, squeezing into what little space was left for me between the 4WD and the guardrail. I thought I was a goner for sure, there was so little space I could easily put my hands out and touch both the guard rail and the 4WD...

Somehow managed to fit into the tiny little space and get in front of the white 4WD, but this stage the van had swerved to the left off the motorway and I kept on going, eyes the size of dinner plates and heart beating faster than a machine gun. Got to work, there was a big black mark across the top of my helmet where a piece of rubber had grazed it, and there were big scuff marks across the calf of my right boot where it had rubbed against the guard rail, I'm surprised I didn't even feel it at the time.

No real lessons learnt from this one I don't think, apart from *WATCH OUT AT ALL TIMES* It was one of those moments where if I'd been in a car I'd definitely have been in a massive pile up, and as much as I'm a thousand times more vulnerable on the bike, I'm glad I was on it and not in a cage.


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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 03-11-2009, 09:25 AM
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Was riding home from a friend's house about 40 miles away and it was raining fairly hard. I've learned that if I could see the wet road, I'll still do about 70 mph.

As I was going down a different section of hwy, suddenly my handlebars went into a tank slapper, oscillating back and forth very quickly and hard to control. It very likely lasted about 3 seconds but it felt like a long time and I knew if it went just a bit more, I was going down.

When it stopped I worked my way to the slow lane and then shoulder. I looked the bike over and didn't see anything obvious. There was a lot of traffic and I just stood there in the rain analyzing the road. I saw that the road had formed "small rivers" where the tires travel. You could see the road in the center and on the sides, but the water rushed to the low tire area.

I hydroplaned and not watching the road close enough, but it didn't explain the tank slapper. I found later that although my rear tire was on the adjustment marks evenly on both sides, my rear tire still didn't line up with the front by over 1/4 inch. Not that bad but it may have been bad enough. Also, I had one hard rear bag loaded with weight and the other with nothing in it.

Main lesson learned, go slower in sections of road where water forms and be watchful because it could suddenly change where water collects.

Now when the hwy has sections with water collecting and I can't see the actual road under the water, you'll never see me going over 60 and I don't care how many cars are passing me. Hydroplaning is NOT good.
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