Dropping your bike - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 58 (permalink) Old 08-25-2013, 08:53 AM Thread Starter
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Dropping your bike

Just wondering how often this happens? For someone just starting out, how likely are you to drop the bike? What are the chances of someone new to riding to actually be able to never drop the bike in the 1st year of riding?
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post #2 of 58 (permalink) Old 08-25-2013, 09:21 AM
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The Versys is my first motorcycle, and the only riding time I had was the few hours from the MSF class. I've made it almost 14,000 miles (1 year, 8 months) with no drops while riding. I will admit though, one time I lost my balance after coming to a stop in a garage and laid the bike down gently. Never goofed that up again.

I think it's very realistic for a new rider to never drop the bike. You have to know and understand your limits, never get carried away by any sense of invincibility on the road, and learn from every mistake or close-call.

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2000 Volvo V70XC 2.4T - 258,000 miles
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post #3 of 58 (permalink) Old 08-25-2013, 09:31 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks Sykes! That's very encouraging! It's just something I've been wondering about. The last time I was on a bike was when I was 13 and ended up on the back of a camper I think, although some may disagree, that I'm wiser and definitely older to know where my limits are. I will be taking the MSF before I buy the bike.
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post #4 of 58 (permalink) Old 08-25-2013, 09:34 AM
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After 20 years of riding I've only dropped a bike once. I took off with a disk lock still on the front and a passenger on as well. I think I would have been able to hold it upright had it not been for the extra weight of the passenger.
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post #5 of 58 (permalink) Old 08-25-2013, 09:49 AM
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Embarrassingly enough, the only time I've dropped any bike (beside my mountain bike) was at the MSF course

They had Kawasaki Eliminators there for everyone. Everything was going peachy, then they made us do that really tight circle. I started to lean like I was at speed and PLOP! right on my leg. The Eliminator is a tiny bike, so it didn't hurt me...physically. The instructor ran up and hit the kill switch for me. As it turned out, everybody was relieved, they didn't want to be the first one in the class to fall over. You're welcome. Anyhoo, I haven't dropped anything since and pray I never will again.
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post #6 of 58 (permalink) Old 08-25-2013, 09:51 AM
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Being aware and experience. Not just with motorcycles but just two wheels in general.

If you really don't want to drop your bike you don't have too. IMO

The one thing that does get some riders is on a slope stopped or at a crawl they turn the wheel and bike rotates straight down.

I have done this a ton of times on different bicycles.

The V is an awesome bike!





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post #7 of 58 (permalink) Old 08-25-2013, 10:23 AM Thread Starter
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Let's say you've done something that you shouldn't have and in a split second you know you're about to drop it; what's the very first thing you'd do?? Pull the clutch in?
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post #8 of 58 (permalink) Old 08-25-2013, 10:28 AM
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post #9 of 58 (permalink) Old 08-25-2013, 10:29 AM
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Let's say you've done something that you shouldn't have and in a split second you know you're about to drop it; what's the very first thing you'd do?? Pull the clutch in?
Nope. Give it some gas...it'll pull you forward and out of the sideways drop.

15 years and about 100,000kms - 2 drops. First on black ice in year 5 and second in a driveway tip over in year 7 (bike stalled just as I was starting off and about to accelerate into/out of a 90 degree turn).
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post #10 of 58 (permalink) Old 08-25-2013, 10:35 AM
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post #11 of 58 (permalink) Old 08-25-2013, 10:44 AM Thread Starter
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Bummer Weljo2001! I've read that drops usually happen at low speeds (like your videos!).
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post #12 of 58 (permalink) Old 08-25-2013, 11:11 AM
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I dropped my friends bike(Honda vtx1300). Thought i was confident enough to ride it after riding a scooter for a year, nope. Tried to make the light and only pulled the front brake. Got thrown off the bike while it slid into the intersection. That sucked. Took the MSF course later and been riding 3 years without incident, plan to keep it that way.
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post #13 of 58 (permalink) Old 08-25-2013, 11:29 AM
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I was trying to balance mine rather than put my foot down and wait, (stupid) while waiting to turn left on a busy county highway. The instant I got my chance to go, I realized I didn't have it in the right gear, stalled it and it tossed me off. Its a noise you never forget.

Broke the clutch lever, scratched the heck out of the left cowling and reaaaallly hurt my confidence for quite a while afterwards.

I got over it, repaired the bike, and consider myself a better, smarter rider for the experience.
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post #14 of 58 (permalink) Old 08-25-2013, 11:39 AM
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Dropping your bike mostly hurts your pride. Getting hit by a car hurts everything. I've had both happen to me and i'll take the dropped bike any day..

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post #15 of 58 (permalink) Old 08-25-2013, 12:13 PM
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Slow speed drops are mostly inevitable, at least once. Happened to me as I was making a crawling turn in the driveway and when I put my foot right foot down it never touched the concrete until it was too late. Once the bike starts going down its hard to stop it, just tried to ease it as much as possible.

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post #16 of 58 (permalink) Old 08-25-2013, 01:45 PM
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Dropped my Versys one time... STEEP driveway exit onto a busy street. Stalled her while letting the clutch out and was so surprised by the stall that she just slowly lowered herself onto her right side while I did everything I could to help ease her on down once i realized I was past the point of being able to recover thr drop. Minimal scratches to my Barkbusters and H-T pannier.

Now... my 225lb heavier ST1100... that's another story. In my three years with her I believe it was three full drops and a couple of dozen "OH SHAT!!!" moments when coming to a well executed full stop and maintaining perfect balance was slightly compromised for one reason or another.

Also... On any bike you'll find that any little rock or bit of sand or what have you under your primary stopping foot... if not anticipated... will quickly spook you and can sometimes result in a slow drop. Because you always expect your primary stopping foot to be firmly planted when you put it down. When it slips... even a little bit... it can really escalate quickly. I hate it when that happens.

EDIT: Four ST1100 drops, not three.

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post #17 of 58 (permalink) Old 08-25-2013, 03:42 PM
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Originally Posted by volpolrider View Post
Bummer Weljo2001! I've read that drops usually happen at low speeds (like your videos!).
In 50 years I've had LOTS at "crawling speeds", and ONE at a "pretty good clip" when I low-sided while riding in a 'spirited' fashion, in a hair-pin. Scratched a few things and broke a couple of ribs, but ATGATT saved me from more.

(I guess we WON'T include those that happened while racing...?)

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post #18 of 58 (permalink) Old 08-25-2013, 04:58 PM
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The only bike a layed down, was a buddies and I wasn't used to the weight/balance. it was when I came to a stop and I don't even remember how exactly it happened, just leaned over a little too far I think, no damage done as I let it down as gently as possible once i knew it was going down.

Versys is a little top heavy with a full tank, but overall quite light. Make sure you get used to the balance and weight of the bike, watch uneven pavement and sand/gravel when you're coming to stop. Also, careful when doing really slow tight turns.

Lovin every minute of it!
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post #19 of 58 (permalink) Old 08-25-2013, 05:51 PM
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its just a matter of time, sooner or later it will happen.. and it will be at the one time you least expect it. just like a flat tire
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post #20 of 58 (permalink) Old 08-25-2013, 07:19 PM
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I've done the "I didn't notice that I left the disc lock on" drop ..... !! ..... about a 5 inch forward travel and then SPLAT ... doh!

I've also done the "coming off the center stand at an angle" drop ... s*it !! (on my old Bandit 1200)


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