|Posted on Saturday, August 05, 2017 - 11:36 pm: ||
Plus 1 to the Rat. I have to say, as an occasional rider, I think I notice bikes more than the average cager. That said, the only time I really notice loud pipes is when they go past my house; yes, they are LOUD and frequently OBNOXIOUS! I can see where they most definitely will annoy the old folks sitting on the porch, and they may remember that on their next encounter with a motorcyclist; note I said motorcyclist, NOT motorcycle. It's the rider, not the bike that annoys people. Well, that rant is over, thanks
|Posted on Saturday, August 05, 2017 - 11:48 pm: ||
A thoughtful and well-written post. Too much here to respond tonight. Much to reflect upon.
Bravo, ratbuell. Response pending.
Let's keep this perspective flexible, alive, and in focus.
Flex your head, man.
(Message edited by araignee on August 06, 2017)
|Posted on Sunday, August 06, 2017 - 12:08 am: ||
I'm glad someone expanded the topic of "Loud pipes save lives."
No. No they don't. Learning to ride saves lives.
It's really cool that this is a topic here today and I was just filming footage about this same subject for my channel almost at the same time.
Conversation for another day: I'm also miffed when I go by the Harley dealer, by the amount of riders who ride wrists-heavy with poor technique, insisting a 40hp bike needs a steering damper, and swear I'm " a fuel tank" if I'm riding a Buell or EBR instead of a hog with apehangers and a dogleash on the front brake handle.
|Posted on Sunday, August 06, 2017 - 09:05 am: ||
There appears to be a lot of emotion in some of these posts. Some very entertaining and thought-provoking responses.
It seems as if there is some serious interjection of personal feelings of animosity toward a certain type of "loud pipe biker." So, lets define what we are talking about here.
Where do you draw the line? Straight-pipe cruisers with no power that are loud for no reason? Hot-rodded cruisers that have loud exhaust for performance? A Ulysses with a drummer because the rider likes the sound? An 1125 with almost any pipe because the owner doesnt want a 50 pound monstrosity of a muffler? A stock XB9? A stock pipe on a cyclone?
All of those could be considered loud, depending on your perspective. Most definitely louder than many contemporaries. My stock piped Uly is my "quiet" bike, but I know a lot of my neighbors might disagree.
Does it make a difference if the rider is ATGATT, takes rider refresher courses every year, and rides as courteously and politely as possible versus the rider with a tank-top and sunglasses? Because if it does, you're not talking about just the pipes. You're introducing personal prejudices into a mechanical discussion.
Are there guys who want to be as loud as possible just for the attention or attitude that pass it off as safety? Of course. Do you hate that guy? Of course. WE ALL DO. That guy isnt in this discussion, and we arent going to change him. That guy is ALWAYS going to exist, just like the ones that text and drive, or drive overly aggressively and try to run you over in a fit of rage. You cant get rid of those people.
As entertaining as a passive-aggressive dig at an imaginary person's manhood written on the internet can be, its just not going to change things. But maybe you feel better now? Get it all out.
Personally, I just like to ride. And sometimes meditate. Meditation helps.
|Posted on Sunday, August 06, 2017 - 09:49 am: ||
My gnat dig wasn't directed at anyone here on badweb, or in this discussion. It was a generic "if you're that guy" comment. While I definitely (as you can tell) don't like "that guy", I can at least have a modicum of respect for them when they admit that's why they do it, instead of hiding behind some fantasy "safety" claim.
My main issue is, noise for the sake of noise. A) there's no point, and B) it damages the image of all motorcyclists in the eyes of the rest of society. "that guy", in the eyes of everyone who doesn't ride, becomes EVERY motorcycle rider and we ALL get a black eye because of it.
If you want to ride ATGATT, good for you - that's the way I go, every time I thumb the starter. If you want to ride in sandals and a tank top and a skid-lid...that's your choice. But unlike loud exhausts...tanks and sandals don't affect the people around you. A 150dB noisemaker at 0700 on Sunday morning just makes me want to reach for a sidearm. I never WOULD, but...the impulse is there because that's how stuff like that makes me feel.
And that comes down to one of my admittedly major pet-peeves in life - MANNERS. Today's society at large has none. Show some respect for those around you and you might be surprised at how they look at, and treat, you in return.
50-lb monstrosity? Nah. I like the finished look and clean lower lines without all those gaps and openings that aftermarket pipes have on the 1125s. And, I like my jack points. And I rely on my situational awareness - it's nice that the stock pipes don't drown out cars, horns, sirens, and other environmental noises (including engine-about-to-break noises!) while I ride. Makes it easier for me to do that whole pay-attention thing
|Posted on Sunday, August 06, 2017 - 01:18 pm: ||
Some semi-random responses and clarifications.
Listening and using all your senses all the time when you ride can make you safer, but you have to stay focused. Piloting a sportbike on a curvy road is not the time to be sightseeing, but scanning your surroundings can give you clues to hidden dangers. Seeing half a dozen turkey vultures circling in the sky a half mile away while negotiating a blind corner or digging deep into a smooth tight curve should get you wondering what's so interesting way beyond your field of view.
Most car drivers not only haven't ridden a motorcycle, they likely don't have any personal knowledge of anyone who does. No skin in the game has been found to be a common trait in car/bike accidents when the car driver violated the motorcycle's right of way. So show some manners if you are that unknown biker in a social situation.
Motorcycles certainly are capable of higher performance than cars, but are your riding skills developed enough to be able to take advantage of your machine's agility? European studies of "motorcyclist failed to negotiate a curve" accidents show that the majority of riders involved in these accidents were not even close to their machine's traction limits. They simply failed to lean far enough to hold the line required to complete the turn. Sometimes, the problem is us.
I, too am an ATGATT rider. I do have more socially subdued items like black Kevlar-lined cargo pants which I wear over Dainese D-core pants with knee and hip armor, that helps knock the edge off the road warrior look when needed. A plain black fully armored jacket without tons of logos and flashy colors murmurs rather than screams "biker!". And on all but the brightest days, I wear a clear faceshield (sometimes with polarized glasses) so people can identify me as a smiling non-threatening human.
An additional problem we face is that our machines are small enough to vanish into a blindspot or behind a roof pillar or all the junk in someone's back seat. The dreaded mom in a minivan with large dogs and her entire brood aboard would have her hands full maintaining order if she was parked, yet you see them dealing with the chaos while texting, checking the GPS, smoking, and sipping a latte at speed in heavy traffic. Analysis of driver distraction shows people texting or talking on a cell phone devote over 60% of their attention to the device. I got this stat from a police seminar on local area crime. Assume the worst, and keep your escape options open. Better yet, put some distance between you and the threat(s).
Another tell is to notice not only the aberrant driver's behavior, but the condition of the vehicle. A car in poor condition with unrepaired damage can mean the driver's collision avoidance skills need some improvement. Yeah, I've been poor and had to get by with less that lovely cars, some of which were battered when I bought them, but I at least kept good tires and exhaust on them and all the lights worked. A big clue is the car with dented driver doors, often resulting from being kicked when the woman taking refuge inside with the kids is refusing to come out and get beaten. Or the poor neglected car is being punished for dying from lack of maintenance. Alcohol is often a factor driving anger management problems, and doesn't improve driver skills or courtesy toward other road users.
Driver head movement -scanning for a chance to pass or make some other sudden move- and front wheel deflection often forecast driver intentions early enough for you to take evasive action. Obviously, failure to maintain lane position, speed fluctuations, and that classic head turned to the right looking down posture that indicates texting should prompt you to exit the proximity of a pending disaster if you can.
Although I too try to catalog and recall road conditions of my favorite routes, it's important to remember that conditions change. I was caught out on a late-afternoon last-minute trip to the store on a road I knew well and had ridden that morning. I was riding a Yamaha 750 at the time, dropped into my favorite corner only to discover someone's leaking vehicle had left a strip of oil through the curve. That was an expensive pain in the ass, but it was a tight turn, so although I was leaned over pretty hard, I didn't have far to fall when I lost traction and low-sided. Rider gear got narfed up, but I didn't get hurt. Since then, I try to assume every blind corner or rise has a surprise behind it, and trim my speed and adjust lane position to allow maximum options if the road is blocked or degraded in some way. If I can see the surface and the exit, and the runout if I have a problem is a nice level field rather than a 50 foot drop down a steep hillside studded with pine trees, I'll push a bit harder. Sometimes a lot harder.
I did in fact face a problem with the treed slope described above, courtesy of a broken bottle in the entrance to the curve that flattened the front tire on my Honda 1100F when I was rolling in at about 75 mph. I somehow had the presence of mind to stand up on the pegs and motocross the gravel shoulder until I slowed down enough to pull my undies out of my nether regions. If I had gone off the edge, it's likely I wouldn't have survived. Hey, the road was fine the last time I rode it... Since then, I'm much more picky about which curves I'm willing to use to explore my lean angle limits.
I personally don't ride with music, which I find distracting. And the sound quality is pretty compromised in portable music, regardless of format. Earbuds are pretty lo-fi, and all the other noise would require I turn up the volume to hear the music above the racket. Further hearing damage for bad sound doesn't make sense for me.
Obviously, I'm a firm believer in earplugs. The wind noise alone can cause hearing loss, even if you're wearing a good helmet. Although you might only experience a noise level around 80dba, the effects are cumulative over time. I've already got tinnitus from too much time in military aircraft, in static line and military free fall parachuting, from hours at the firing range or waiting around on the flight line, from riding motorcycles for over 40 years, too many rock concerts, and riding lawnmowers as a kid trying to earn a few bucks. We got tested frequently in the military, and the degradation in our hearing affected all of us. Nowadays the protection is better, with noise-cancelling headphones and so on, but this new technology won't fit under a helmet, as far as I know.
The hearing pro argument is another flashpoint among bikers, with the tough-guy contingent insisting that you can't hear emergency vehicles and so on with a full face helmet or earplugs. I actually tried a half-helmet like motor cops used to wear when I was stationed in Las Vegas, trying to keep my brain from boiling on the ride to the base. It was painfully loud, and didn't keep me any cooler than a well-vented full face helmet. I guarantee a long riding day without earplugs will have your ears roaring when it's over.
Yup, you gotta keep your head in the game, have a plan, stay calm, and make sure you and your machine are up to the task.
|Posted on Monday, August 07, 2017 - 04:20 pm: ||
It's the motorcyclist, not the motorcycle as someone noted.
You can easily tell when someone is short shifting a loud vehicle and I am sure the vast majority of people don't have any problem with it. The guys that should be shot are the the asshats that are just riding/driving around to offend as many people as possible by making as much noise as possible, whether its the Harley crowd or vested losers on sportbikes.
And yep, I do stand by the belief that in certain situations (mainly in blind corner situations), additional notification via a louder exhaust note, is beneficial to the motorcyclist.
(Message edited by fresnobuell on August 07, 2017)
|Posted on Monday, August 07, 2017 - 04:34 pm: ||
No one is arguing that loud pipes make you invincible, or that being loud is a replacement for good riding. Im not even arguing that its good policy as human being. It just makes you a little more visible, and anecdotal evidence aside, its hard to see how that can be MORE dangerous.
This...a bit more visible indeed (and with the Barkers with Race ECM, you can throw in there about 15 add'l ponies and better power/throttle response everywhere in the rev range, which is the only reason I chose to go this route.)