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What is the limit? Riders always talk about riding at the limit or finding the bike's limit. What limits how fast you go?
 

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Official E-Thug
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For me, one of the true mental blocks I have is the honest realization that if I am at that "limit" or pushing that "limit" and I go too close, or even over the edge, I dont know how to fix that, how to get back to where I should be. In a true, calculated sense I mean. For instance at the track Ive been to (only two track days and about 150 miles) I came out of one of the tight turns on the track and gave it a bit too much gas, the rear slide then caught traction, and I almost highsided, but I didnt and kept on my way.

That is all well and good, but I feel like me saving that was 70 percent luck and 30 percent skill, it should be the other way around.

Additionally, I dont have the experience to be able to truly diagnose why the bike feels a certain way leaned over or coming out of a corner or what have you. I know my bike pushes out of corners more than it should, but i really have no way of knowing why or how to fix it... which therefore decreases my comfort in pushing that limit.


So to me, what limits how fast I go is the honest understanding that in order to progress wihtout ending up on my ass more times than I can count, I need to engage in a learning process that takes a lot more time than I would normally be willing to spend. But I love the feeling of the track andgoing fast and Im willing to be patient to learn how to go faster!

*EDIT* this question - i think - really has nothign to do with the street, pushing the bike to its "limits" on the street is near impossible. At 30 % of its limits ur still looking at MAJOR police problems so the point is moot.....
 

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Don't tease the dragon
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There are TONS of limiting factors, and they vary from rider to rider and the bike involved...
Traffic, road surface conditions, environment, traffic, suspension, alertness, others in a group, weather, reserve for safety. squids, etc, etc, etc,

You set your own limits, and you answer to the result of them!
 

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Ah....the speed limit I think. Like if your in a 55mph zone and your going 54 mph, this is what is called "riding on the edge of the limit".
 

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Take care now ......
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It's different for everyone and in different situations. Riding beyond your capabilities (safely and controlled) is riding past the limits. Road conditions can also affect your riding limits. If the conditions call for more cautious riding then that can also be considered riding to the limits at that current moment.
 

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I believe I found the limit of my tires the other day. They were completely torn up on the edges and had rubber boogers all over them and stuck to my undertail. Not to mention the fact that they were losing traction badly and seesawing.
 

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"The limit" isn't about speed, it isn't about the machine. It's about control. This is the best article I've read about understanding one's own limit:

Degrees of Control

Jeff Hughes, Sport Rider, October 2003

You slide in behind him—or maybe he glides smoothly around in front of you—and within a handful of corners you know there's something special here. It's not his hardware, which might be anything from an ancient BMW airhead to a years-old Japanese standard to the latest race-replica tackle. Nor is it his clothing, which, if anything, probably carries a patina of age—the leather or nylon faded from long miles in the sun and spotted from uncounted bug-cleanings. Nor is it just that he's fast, though he probably carries a pretty crisp pace.

No, what instantly gets your attention is his utter casualness—the sheer effortlessness—with which he rides along the road, dispatching the curves like so many pieces of candy. There's a relaxed assurance in his demeanor, a perfect confidence in his swift cadence, which gives rise to a certainty of what the next miles will bring. His speed is just—so. We watch for a while—assuming we're able to stay with him—and in our heart of hearts, where our desires stir and our egos live, we couch what we're seeing in the same way we always do. We know some guy, maybe we know lots of guys, buddies who are surely faster than Mr. Smooth and Effortless. Hell, maybe we're faster.

But even as we think these things, salve for the ego, we can't escape the growing suspicion that this rider in front of us is just playing. Not with us, but with the road—probably the merest touch of a smile tugging at his lips as he glides through the corners—even as our own heart hammers a staccato beat as we're carried along in the rush behind him. Maybe it dawns on us, in a moment of honesty, that he could just walk away if he wanted. One of those things you just know. So why doesn't he? Why is it that seems content to just roll along, playing those curves in the road like so many riffs drifting easily from a well worn guitar? We all talk about being good, about being smooth. Well, there he is, right in front of you. The poster child.

In a sport whose very appeal is built around the merits of speed—a sport where our greatest heroes are those who go the fastest, a sport where even the most mundane machinery comes dripping with performance, where even the clothes we wear are based upon the need to attenuate the risk we perceive attendant to that speed—it’s hard not to get caught up in the notion that speed is the thing. It’s both the yardstick by which we measure ourselves and the mantle in which we wish to be draped. Hell, who doesn’t want to be fast?

The corollary, an article of faith repeated so often that it seems to be any argument, is that speed—too much of it at least—is a bad thing. It’s the bogeyman waiting to catch us out any time we cross the imaginary line of too much. Most of us nod our heads when we hear that.

The thing is, that doesn’t always jive with out experience. We see guys all the time who manage to crash at quite modest speeds. And we know some—admittedly a much smaller number—who ride really fast, and have for a long time, but who never seem to crash. Not as in they don’t crash very often. As in they never crash.

We all undertake a modicum of risk every time we thumb the starter—it’s just inherent to the sport. But those of us who choose to adopt a faster pace deliberately assume more of that danger. We knowingly engage the laws of probability in a game of chicken. You play it long enough and you lose. That’s what we’ve always been told, right?

Why is it then, that such a select group of riders manages to ride at an elevated pace over many miles, weekend after weekend, trip after trip, year after year, with little in the way of a mishap? Why are these riders seemingly held apart, aloof, from the carnage which too-often otherwise affects our sport? And how is it that so many other riders, traveling at much lesser speeds, still manage to toss away their bikes with such depressing frequency?

Well, maybe we’ve been looking in the wrong place all along. Maybe, just maybe, it’s not about speed after all—at least not in the way we usually think of it. Maybe it’s about something else, something as simple as the degree of control we exercise over a span of road.

It might happen on any ride, on any Sunday. We head out with some buddies, or maybe we hook up with that group of guys we were talking to down at the gas station, or maybe that devil on our shoulder is simply a little more vigorous in his exhortations this day. However it happens, we soon get to the road. The good one. The one that brought us out here in the first place. And there, in that mix of camaraderie and good tarmac and adrenaline-laced delight, we find ourselves giving away that which we had sworn to hold tight to—our judgment. It doesn’t happen all at once. We give it away a little click here, a little click there, like a ratcheting cord. Soon, rolling through the curves faster and faster and laughing under our helmets all the while, we enter a new realm.

We’ve all been there. We instantly know we’re in a new place because it’s suddenly different. Our lines are no longer quite so clean. We’re on the brakes more, and we’re making little mistakes in our timing. And instead of that Zen-like rush through the corners we enjoyed just moments ago—the state of grace that is the prize of this sport—we’re now caught up in the brief slivers of time between corners trying to fix those mistakes. They seem to be coming faster now—both the corners and the mistakes—and there doesn’t seem to be quite enough time to do what we need to do, the errors piling up in an increasingly dissonant heap. Our normally smooth riding is suddenly ragged, with an edgy and anxious quality. Inside our helmets the laughter mutes and then is gone altogether, replaced by a grim determination to stay on pace. We start to mutter little self-reproaches with each newborn error.

Soon enough we’ll blow it. We’ll get into one particular corner too hot—realizations and regret crystallizing in a single hot moment—and from that instant until whatever’s going to happen does, we’re just along for the ride. It will be what it will be. With a touch of luck we’ll come away with nothing more than a nervous laugh and a promise to ourselves not to do that again. That and maybe one more little debt to pay. You know, the one we just made to God—if he would please just get us out of this mess we’d gotten ourselves into just this one last time, promise.

Just one of those moments, huh?

It has to do with choices. When we ride a challenging road—at whatever speed—there is an observable, knowable degree of control that we exhibit. Not just over one corner. Not even over just one section. But over the entire road. On some days our mastery is complete—we’ve chosen to stay well within our own personal skill envelope. On other days—well, on other days maybe we choose to push toward the edge of that envelope. To a place where our mastery begins to diminish. To a place where the degree of control we exhibit gradually decreases. Ultimately, to the tipping point—where all our skills seem to go to hell and gone in once big hurry.

There’s a predictability to it. A good rider, riding within his proper envelope, will have none of those moments. There will be no spikes in his heart rate. No sudden bursts of adrenaline. Nothing but a smooth, flowing movement across the road. He will be this side of the tipping point—the tipping point for him. It’ll be different for each of us. And it’ll vary from day to day, maybe even from hour to hour, depending upon how we feel. Sometimes we’re in the groove and sometimes we’re not. But I think the key is that as long as the rider stays this side of the tipping point, he can probably ride a surprisingly long time without ill effect.

And that’s the message. The predictor of bad stuff, the closest thing we have to a crystal ball, are those moments. They are part of the landscape, part of the sport. And they happen to all of us. But for any given rider, they need to be very rare. If they happen with any frequency at all I’d say the tipping point is at hand. And if that’s a place you choose to hang around much, there’s probably something very ugly waiting for you not too far down the road.

Think about all those riders who’ve ever impressed us, like our rider at the beginning of this story. They all seem to have a smooth, fluid, easy quality about them, an assurance which belies any stress or fear. They’re always balanced, always in control. I suspect somewhere along the line they’ve acquired a germ of wisdom, hard-won over many miles, which has given them an appreciation of their own limits. They know where that tipping point is—where their mastery of their bike, the road, and the environment begins to slip away—and they long ago made the decision to stay this side of it.

When you do find them testing their limits—surely there’s an argument to be made for exploring the edges of one’s ability—it’s likely to be at a time and place of very careful choosing, and it probably involves a racetrack. Much of wisdom involves simply knowing when and where to lose those impulses that we all carry.

So maybe it’s never been about speed after all. Maybe that’s why such a small, select group of people are able to ride for years and years without crashing—the fact that they ride fast is secondary to the fact that they’re always in control. They know their own limits.

And that’s the lesson for the rest of us—at least for those of us who wish to enjoy this sport for a long, long, time. There’s a choice to be made, every time we thumb the starter.

Not that it’s easy. If it were, we wouldn’t see the carnage among our ranks that we do every weekend. But for those who manage it, for those who bring restraint and discipline to mix with their skill and daring, there’s an upside, even beyond the satisfaction of bringing one’s bike and body back unscathed after an afternoon’s ride. There’s something to be said for gathering up one’s power, like the magician that motorcycle makes us feel like, and wielding them well along a good road. There’s art to be found there.

Art and magic.
 

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All this stuff is BS man there is only one limit on a modern sportbike. That limit is Balls. When you see Rossi out braking guys on turn one at track after track it's not because his pads or rotors or "feel" is that much better. It's because he ain't scared.
 

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that and he's been ridding since he was 5. Exp diffently helps when pushing your bike to the limits. O don't forget he had a dad that races bikes to learn from. Not all of us have someone with years of motorcycle racing experience to turn to when we have a question about our bikes. Most of those racers you see on tv have had family that brought them into the sport at a very early age. So they know from exp how and why a bike should feel and where that limit is.

I know for sure, it doesn't matter what type of sportbike your on, if your ridding close the limits of the bikes tires ability to grip the road you on the street your ridding to fucking hard. The more your lean or faster you go around a corner the easier it becomes go down. A oil spot, some sand, gravel, someones soda could screw your day up pretty fast. So I rather not do that. As far as top speed in a straight line, I think that's the least of your worries. Anyone can do that. As long as other cars are not on the road and it's not bumpy.
 

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My limit can change at any time. It may be higher one day and very low the next. Depends on how I feel how focused I am, if I am in a good mood or bad, am I tired. All these things play a big role in how I ride. I was iding stand ups today in a school parking lot that was empty and felt pretty good. 2 days ago I went there and really did'nt pull any since I was in a bad mood. If I get worried then I am pushing to hard.
 

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xxdcmast said:
Fear of tickets + insurance points

FUNNY :neener

My personal limiter is what ever mp3 is playing at the time. If a song starts that pumps me up.... watch the wrist flick. IF its a good song but mellow, I'll drive at my normal 10-15 mph over whatever the sign says.
 

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SBN Rookie ;-)
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My crapness is my biggest limiter right now, im still learning how to ride the b***** bike. I feel like im going fast round corners but i really have no idea how much faster i could go.

Help me, stuman. :beer
 

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Where's my bike???
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Eddie Apex said:
You slide in behind him—or maybe he glides smoothly around in front of you—and within a handful of corners you know there's something special here. It's not his hardware, which might be anything from an ancient BMW airhead to a years-old Japanese standard to the latest race-replica tackle. Nor is it his clothing, which, if anything, probably carries a patina of age—the leather or nylon faded from long miles in the sun and spotted from uncounted bug-cleanings. Nor is it just that he's fast, though he probably carries a pretty crisp pace.

No, what instantly gets your attention is his utter casualness—the sheer effortlessness—with which he rides along the road, dispatching the curves like so many pieces of candy. There's a relaxed assurance in his demeanor, a perfect confidence in his swift cadence, which gives rise to a certainty of what the next miles will bring. His speed is just—so. We watch for a while—assuming we're able to stay with him—and in our heart of hearts, where our desires stir and our egos live, we couch what we're seeing in the same way we always do. We know some guy, maybe we know lots of guys, buddies who are surely faster than Mr. Smooth and Effortless. Hell, maybe we're faster.

But even as we think these things, salve for the ego, we can't escape the growing suspicion that this rider in front of us is just playing. Not with us, but with the road—probably the merest touch of a smile tugging at his lips as he glides through the corners—even as our own heart hammers a staccato beat as we're carried along in the rush behind him. Maybe it dawns on us, in a moment of honesty, that he could just walk away if he wanted. One of those things you just know. So why doesn't he? Why is it that seems content to just roll along, playing those curves in the road like so many riffs drifting easily from a well worn guitar? We all talk about being good, about being smooth. Well, there he is, right in front of you. The poster child.

In a sport whose very appeal is built around the merits of speed—a sport where our greatest heroes are those who go the fastest, a sport where even the most mundane machinery comes dripping with performance, where even the clothes we wear are based upon the need to attenuate the risk we perceive attendant to that speed—it’s hard not to get caught up in the notion that speed is the thing. It’s both the yardstick by which we measure ourselves and the mantle in which we wish to be draped. Hell, who doesn’t want to be fast?

The corollary, an article of faith repeated so often that it seems to be any argument, is that speed—too much of it at least—is a bad thing. It’s the bogeyman waiting to catch us out any time we cross the imaginary line of too much. Most of us nod our heads when we hear that.

The thing is, that doesn’t always jive with out experience. We see guys all the time who manage to crash at quite modest speeds. And we know some—admittedly a much smaller number—who ride really fast, and have for a long time, but who never seem to crash. Not as in they don’t crash very often. As in they never crash.

We all undertake a modicum of risk every time we thumb the starter—it’s just inherent to the sport. But those of us who choose to adopt a faster pace deliberately assume more of that danger. We knowingly engage the laws of probability in a game of chicken. You play it long enough and you lose. That’s what we’ve always been told, right?

Why is it then, that such a select group of riders manages to ride at an elevated pace over many miles, weekend after weekend, trip after trip, year after year, with little in the way of a mishap? Why are these riders seemingly held apart, aloof, from the carnage which too-often otherwise affects our sport? And how is it that so many other riders, traveling at much lesser speeds, still manage to toss away their bikes with such depressing frequency?

Well, maybe we’ve been looking in the wrong place all along. Maybe, just maybe, it’s not about speed after all—at least not in the way we usually think of it. Maybe it’s about something else, something as simple as the degree of control we exercise over a span of road.

It might happen on any ride, on any Sunday. We head out with some buddies, or maybe we hook up with that group of guys we were talking to down at the gas station, or maybe that devil on our shoulder is simply a little more vigorous in his exhortations this day. However it happens, we soon get to the road. The good one. The one that brought us out here in the first place. And there, in that mix of camaraderie and good tarmac and adrenaline-laced delight, we find ourselves giving away that which we had sworn to hold tight to—our judgment. It doesn’t happen all at once. We give it away a little click here, a little click there, like a ratcheting cord. Soon, rolling through the curves faster and faster and laughing under our helmets all the while, we enter a new realm.

We’ve all been there. We instantly know we’re in a new place because it’s suddenly different. Our lines are no longer quite so clean. We’re on the brakes more, and we’re making little mistakes in our timing. And instead of that Zen-like rush through the corners we enjoyed just moments ago—the state of grace that is the prize of this sport—we’re now caught up in the brief slivers of time between corners trying to fix those mistakes. They seem to be coming faster now—both the corners and the mistakes—and there doesn’t seem to be quite enough time to do what we need to do, the errors piling up in an increasingly dissonant heap. Our normally smooth riding is suddenly ragged, with an edgy and anxious quality. Inside our helmets the laughter mutes and then is gone altogether, replaced by a grim determination to stay on pace. We start to mutter little self-reproaches with each newborn error.

Soon enough we’ll blow it. We’ll get into one particular corner too hot—realizations and regret crystallizing in a single hot moment—and from that instant until whatever’s going to happen does, we’re just along for the ride. It will be what it will be. With a touch of luck we’ll come away with nothing more than a nervous laugh and a promise to ourselves not to do that again. That and maybe one more little debt to pay. You know, the one we just made to God—if he would please just get us out of this mess we’d gotten ourselves into just this one last time, promise.

Just one of those moments, huh?

It has to do with choices. When we ride a challenging road—at whatever speed—there is an observable, knowable degree of control that we exhibit. Not just over one corner. Not even over just one section. But over the entire road. On some days our mastery is complete—we’ve chosen to stay well within our own personal skill envelope. On other days—well, on other days maybe we choose to push toward the edge of that envelope. To a place where our mastery begins to diminish. To a place where the degree of control we exhibit gradually decreases. Ultimately, to the tipping point—where all our skills seem to go to hell and gone in once big hurry.

There’s a predictability to it. A good rider, riding within his proper envelope, will have none of those moments. There will be no spikes in his heart rate. No sudden bursts of adrenaline. Nothing but a smooth, flowing movement across the road. He will be this side of the tipping point—the tipping point for him. It’ll be different for each of us. And it’ll vary from day to day, maybe even from hour to hour, depending upon how we feel. Sometimes we’re in the groove and sometimes we’re not. But I think the key is that as long as the rider stays this side of the tipping point, he can probably ride a surprisingly long time without ill effect.

And that’s the message. The predictor of bad stuff, the closest thing we have to a crystal ball, are those moments. They are part of the landscape, part of the sport. And they happen to all of us. But for any given rider, they need to be very rare. If they happen with any frequency at all I’d say the tipping point is at hand. And if that’s a place you choose to hang around much, there’s probably something very ugly waiting for you not too far down the road.

Think about all those riders who’ve ever impressed us, like our rider at the beginning of this story. They all seem to have a smooth, fluid, easy quality about them, an assurance which belies any stress or fear. They’re always balanced, always in control. I suspect somewhere along the line they’ve acquired a germ of wisdom, hard-won over many miles, which has given them an appreciation of their own limits. They know where that tipping point is—where their mastery of their bike, the road, and the environment begins to slip away—and they long ago made the decision to stay this side of it.

When you do find them testing their limits—surely there’s an argument to be made for exploring the edges of one’s ability—it’s likely to be at a time and place of very careful choosing, and it probably involves a racetrack. Much of wisdom involves simply knowing when and where to lose those impulses that we all carry.

So maybe it’s never been about speed after all. Maybe that’s why such a small, select group of people are able to ride for years and years without crashing—the fact that they ride fast is secondary to the fact that they’re always in control. They know their own limits.

And that’s the lesson for the rest of us—at least for those of us who wish to enjoy this sport for a long, long, time. There’s a choice to be made, every time we thumb the starter.

Not that it’s easy. If it were, we wouldn’t see the carnage among our ranks that we do every weekend. But for those who manage it, for those who bring restraint and discipline to mix with their skill and daring, there’s an upside, even beyond the satisfaction of bringing one’s bike and body back unscathed after an afternoon’s ride. There’s something to be said for gathering up one’s power, like the magician that motorcycle makes us feel like, and wielding them well along a good road. There’s art to be found there.

Art and magic.
This should be the 1st thing read upon entering this forum for any future & present rider. Long read, but well worth it! I ask for this to be copied into a new thread & stickied!?

:dblthumb
 

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That was a great read. Too many people who get into bikes don't realize that the honour of the sport is in the form, the fluidity, and the grace of your riding - not in how fast you go. Any monkey can go fast (for the street) on a modern sportbike. It takes a lot of skill to do it correctly, though. And developing the technique to do it correctly is the main goal in my riding. That article put my thoughts into words way better than I ever could have.
 
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