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Headshake

  #1  
Old 05-04-2013, 04:04 PM
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Default Headshake

Got my first taste of headshake hitting a bump going fast while leaned. I was accelerating slightly when I hit the bump and stayed on the throttle through the shake. Did scare myself as it was quite violent. It must have not been TOO bad though because when it was over I was still on the bike. What can I do about this in the future? I know some people will recommend a steering damper, which I'm looking into, but what can I do technique-wise to avoid headshake?
 
  #2  
Old 05-04-2013, 09:08 PM
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When in doubt, gas it out. Just like riding in the dirt.
 
  #3  
Old 05-05-2013, 09:19 AM
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Best bet...try looking farther down the road and avoid potholes/debris that might induce a tank-slap.
Under most street conditions, it's very unusual to encounter one.

Mostly very high speed or (as you experienced) road obstacles are the culprit.
Stabilizers are mostly a track accessory, where riding at the edge of the bike/rider's stability is commonplace.


In 25+ years, I've only been subjected to it twice. Different bikes each time.
Both times form hitting something in the road.
Once a road-kill 85-ish pound, shepherd (@ 60mph at night), once from a pothole.

Basically, I'm recommending...don't dwell on it,
just be more cautious of your path in the future.

Ern
 

Last edited by MadHattr059; 05-05-2013 at 09:24 AM.
  #4  
Old 05-05-2013, 12:40 PM
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In this case speed was the issue, the bump went across the entire road and would not have been avoidable. Will a softer, and properly set-up suspension (it currently is neither) also help me ride quickly across surfaces like these? In a car with good street suspension there is no drama hauling way more *** over this bumpy road--the rest of the road was bumpy too but the turns were clear and I could hit the unavoidable bumps head on. I realize the track is the place to "push" the bike but then again although speeding I wasn't leaned very much when the headshake occurred.
 
  #5  
Old 05-05-2013, 07:07 PM
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now that you've experienced it, it won't/shouldn't scare you next time. keep calm, gas on
 
  #6  
Old 05-06-2013, 02:15 PM
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Originally Posted by yz125 View Post
Got my first taste of headshake hitting a bump going fast while leaned. I was accelerating slightly when I hit the bump and stayed on the throttle through the shake. Did scare myself as it was quite violent. It must have not been TOO bad though because when it was over I was still on the bike. What can I do about this in the future? I know some people will recommend a steering damper, which I'm looking into, but what can I do technique-wise to avoid headshake?
You did the right thing by staying on the gas and not panicking and chopping the throttle. The best thing you can do to avoid it next time and/or to deal with it again if it does occur is to stay nice and relaxed on the bike and DON'T GRIP or TIGHTEN up on the handlebars. Staying relaxed and letting the bike sort it out is the best bet.

Making sure your lower body is secure and connected to the bike will also help you be able to hold on and remain on the bike while you relax all pressure on the bars. What can you do with your legs/lower body to help you stay locked onto the bike?

Misti
 
  #7  
Old 05-15-2013, 11:29 PM
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I get headshake on my 954 while accelerating through a turn. When I concentrate on leaning over the tank more to put weight closer to the front, it happens much less often. When the front tire has very little weight on it, but is still in contact with the ground, headshake will be a common occurance......until you get a steering damper. ;-)
 
  #8  
Old 07-14-2013, 11:47 AM
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I was always told for tank slappers to grip tank with thighs as hard as you can and put your weight forward on the bike, hold onto the bars but don't put any input, and just ride it out.
 
  #9  
Old 07-21-2013, 01:02 AM
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I roll off the throttle when it happens and it calms it down immediately. The other way would be to throttle more and get the front wheel off the ground....but I wouldn't recommend that one, lol.
 
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