At what speed does counter steering take over? - Victory Forums - Victory Motorcycle Forum
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post #1 of 28 (permalink) Old 11-27-2010, 11:04 AM Thread Starter
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Default At what speed does counter steering take over?

Having just finished with sport bikes (Honda VTR, and Buell) I was always intruiged by counter steering. I could lean the Buell just with the slightest twitch of my fingers on the bars! But with a steep rake angle of 21 degrees, that's what I would expect...

I find that riding the Vegas, I rely on a lot more steering by the bars rather than the body weight lean. The tendency to 'tip in' at walking pace soon diappears as the speed picks up...but at what speed does in happen. More intruigingly...why?
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Last edited by vegaslad; 11-27-2010 at 11:06 AM. Reason: spelling
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post #2 of 28 (permalink) Old 11-27-2010, 11:49 AM
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guess its all up to the rider every one pushes or pulls a little different.
Isn't this more a sport bike question then a victory question.
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post #3 of 28 (permalink) Old 11-27-2010, 12:16 PM
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Counter steering works above 15mph or so. At slower speeds the bike probably just drops, as you have to have some momentum to lean and continue to roll. It should work on anything with 2 wheels, from bicycles to gold wings.

The angle of your lean has to match the speed and radius of turn you're trying to negotiate. Without leaning, you cannot take the turn - turning the bars alone works only at very low - almost standing still speeds.

One thing to consider is that a 2-wheeler with wider tires will be harder to lean than one with narrower tires. Does your Vegas run a fat tire in the back?

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post #4 of 28 (permalink) Old 11-27-2010, 01:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CrossRoads View Post

One thing to consider is that a 2-wheeler with wider tires will be harder to lean than one with narrower tires. Does your Vegas run a fat tire in the back?
Seems like just about every one I have talked with over the years, has said, when the rear tire gets up close to the 250 wide range they start to get harder to handle in the curves.
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post #5 of 28 (permalink) Old 11-27-2010, 04:01 PM
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My Jackpot is my first bike. So, the 250 was never an issue. People always asked me how does the bike handle with the 250. I never understood why they were asking me that because since it is my first bike and my training bike I didn't know anything different.

Then my buddy and I traded bikes. He has a Vegas. We leave the house. I go to turn right at the corner and almost flop over. That's when I realized how much i put my body into leaning the bike.

Saying that, counter steering is second nature to me especially now that I have a 280.

To me getting off my bike and on a skinny tire bike is night and day. The skinny tire bike seems to turn at the flip of my finger.
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post #6 of 28 (permalink) Old 11-27-2010, 04:16 PM
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I tend to disagree with this....You "counter steer" almost all the time and do so at any speed....If you go to do the proverbial figure eight on a full size bike you do so by counter steering, not by turning the bar....and the term "leaning" is sometimes misrepresented as you are actually pushing the bar down in the direction of travel....Anyone that took the MSF course can attest to this....
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post #7 of 28 (permalink) Old 11-27-2010, 05:45 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by visionjohnny View Post
guess its all up to the rider every one pushes or pulls a little different.
Isn't this more a sport bike question then a victory question.

It's just a bike question, not meant to be sport or Victory ....just a discussion topic!...LOL

Last edited by vegaslad; 11-27-2010 at 06:02 PM. Reason: add text
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post #8 of 28 (permalink) Old 11-27-2010, 06:21 PM
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I fear some of us confuse the term "counter steering" with something else.

Yes, you must lean in order to turn. No way around it, unless you're at crawling speed, point at which, you can just turn the handle bars without leaning (you are still leaning, but since you're going slow, you can deem the position as vertical).

Countersteering is when you push forward, not downward, on the side of the handlebar of the direction you wish to turn. Pushing downward causes the bike to simply lean in that direction, which is fine, but that's not countersteering. Pushing forward on the handle bar causes your front wheel to turn in the opposite direction of which you wish to turn, causing the bike to fall into a very quick lean in the direction you wish to turn. There is no way for anybody to lean the bike as quick to one side or the other as quick as countersteering.

Countersteering is not the only way to get the bike to lean, but it is the fastest. You cannot push the bike down in a split of a second, but you can by using countersteering. The need for you to lean the bike quickly rises exponentially with speed. Why would you have to countersteer at 5mph? You have all the time in the world to lean the bike when you go slow - when going fast, countersteering becomes essential.

By the way, if I misread and/or misunderstood your post, I apologize. I'm really nothing more than a rookie, and I don't mean to be lecturing anybody. I just wanted to clarify the topic, to be sure we're all talking about the same subject.

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post #9 of 28 (permalink) Old 11-27-2010, 06:26 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CrossRoads View Post
By the way, if I misread and/or misunderstood your post, I apologize.
No apology needed at all!! And your answer makes a whole pile of sense...appreciate the input!
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post #10 of 28 (permalink) Old 11-27-2010, 10:00 PM
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Counter steering is a art. It takes time and practice before it becomes natural. Natural means you just do it without thinking.
I explain like this riding a bicycle we pull the bars. When turning right our right hand pulls on the bar to make it turn. with counter steering it is the opposite you push. Counter steering does make the front wheel go in the opposite direction you are going and it also allows you to be more upright (you will not notice this) which gives more control of the bike. Ever go into a curve and almost run out of road before getting through it. Counter steering will help eliminate that. With counter steering you can take the same curve at the same speed and have plenty of road left and that is because you are not leaning as far over. I am not saying you will not lean but I am saying you will not notice that you are not leaning as much.
Without counter steering switch backs would be a pain and would not allow you to make the fast switch that is needed when running hard.
I think crossroads explained much better.
As far as speed goes I have always explained to use it above 20 mph. Below that you will automatically turn the bars. Figure 8's are easy and you do a certain amount of counter steering but the counter steering is used when doing the switch for 1 direction to the other plus you are using your friction zone due to the slow speed. And then the diameter of the circles will determine a lot.
A 16 foot figure 8 will control your speed.
Go to a parking lot and practice your slow speed maneuvering using counter steering and you will know what speed you can use it and when not to. Practice, practice is the best way.
I do not have much left on my floorboards on my Ultra and the Goldwing is worse on the peg. I hope I never scrape on the XC it could get ugly since they are stationary.

I think I made this worse

Oh well
Come on down or up to Sand Mountain and ride with us you may decide to stay. Most folks do.
Oh, I have a spare room if ya decide to say a while

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Last edited by dirtdobber; 11-27-2010 at 10:05 PM.
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