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Machine Control Days

Dates for MCD's in are shown in the Calendar
They all take place at the
Car park D
Ebbsfleet Station
International Way
Gravesend
DA10 1EB
E561556 N173908





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Start time is 9am Sharp and we will be finished before 1pm. Cost is £10 per person.It will give you the opportunity to try slow speed control, braking control etc in a secure location away from traffic, diesel spills and pot holes. All associates welcome, also any Green Badge Holders who have just bought a new bike and want to try out slow speed control.

For More Information

Contact Mick West

MCD top tips....

Don't try too hard

There will always be someone better than you, so don't try to compare yourself or compete with others. Also different bikes are easier / more difficult to handle, i.e. Trials bike Vs Goldwing ? Instead the aim is for you to be better at the end of the day than when you started . Stay well within your comfort zone, don't drop your bike and end the session with a big smile on your face !

Proper posture

Many riders are tempted to use body parts as balancing weights when riding slowly. Usually, this involves moving a knee away from the bike to counterbalance in a slow turn. If you do find yourself doing this, be prepared: Proper seating posture is very important. Sit comfortably on the bike and keep your knees against the tank. Try not to move around too much as this transfers weight around and provides steering input to the bike. And keep your feet on the foot-pegs.


Sighting

Failure to look ahead is one of the most common errors with slow speed riding. Many riders look 3.0 to 5.0 feet (about 1.0 to 1.6 meters) ahead which causes them to be shaky. Looking the proper distance ahead, about 3.0 to 5.0 yards (about 3-5 meters), gives your mind enough time to plan a route, so you don't have to make so many last-minute corrections. Force yourself to look far ahead. Try it, you'll be amazed how this technique will improve your slow-speed riding.


Rear brake only

Under normal conditions, the front brake is an invaluable tool for keeping your bike under control. However, at very slow speeds while the front wheel is turned, the front brake can be too strong to provide a smooth stop. It can also upset the bike geometry by causing the forks to compress. The rear has more than enough power to stop you at these speeds, just be careful not to shift around to get your foot on the brake pedal (if it isn't already, as it should be), or you'll upset the bike's balance.


Clutch Slipping

Another major key to slow speed control is the clutch. Most motorcycles have wet clutches, which means that the friction plates are bathed in oil to keep them cool. This means that slipping a clutch is not a problem for a short time. When riding at a speed that is slower than your idle will let you go, control your speed by pulling in the clutch past the friction point to disengage the engine from the rear wheel. The friction point is the point that the clutch just starts to 'grab' and transfer power to the rear wheel. When you feel unsteady because you are going so slowly you feel you almost have to put your foot down, then let out the clutch a bit to speed up until you're steady. You can do this for quite some time without hurting the clutch. You can also balance your speed with a trailing rear brake this also adds to stability.


Throttle

Your throttle should be set at a bit faster than tick-over, this has a couple of benefits. Firstly you are not constantly increasing / decreasing revs, remember you are controlling the speed of your bike with rear brake and clutch. Secondly your hand is kept in a neutral position which means when you turn the handlebars from lock to lock you don’t have to be a contortionist. 

 

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