Friday, January 09, 2009

Not This Time You're Not! !



I have spent a good bit of time flying since right before Christmas with my job. Two weeks in Michigan and then the first of this week I was in Denver. So, I've missed a lot of time getting to ride my Harley. So yesterday and this morning were my first real chance to get to commute on the bike again, and again I seized the moment.

During this morning's commute, I had almost a flashback. Traffic was flowing 65-70 mph and thick. I'm in the lefthand lane when the cars in front slam on their brakes, nose dive, and tires begin to squal. I firmly applied a considerable amount of front brake, and began applying some rear brake. You could hear the rear tire "chirp, chirp, chirp". I knew it was at the edge of locking so when I heard the light chirp, I lightly lifted my foot and kept applying pressure. I kept my head up looking at the space between the cars in the two lanes (along the dotted line separating the two lanes). When I was fully stopped with both feet on the asphalt, I was three feet from the car in front of me.

As you may recall, this is not how it played out last time. What was different this time was that I had been maintaining my two second rule (one hondapottimus, two hondapottimus), I didn't get all excited and stomp the rear brake, I applied it firmly and moderated with varying pressure, and I had been riding in line with the car in front of me's right tail light instead of riding dead center behind which would have allowed me to use the space between the cars for more stopping room if it came to that (thankgully it didn't).

It still got my attention as I could feel my increased pulse rate when traffic resumed its 65mph pace. Who knows why they come to a complete stop and then jump to 65 mph in 100 feet but thats Metro Atlanta traffic. I rode along with a smile under my fullface helmet. "Ya didn't get me this time ya bastages", I thought, "I didn't fall for your foolish trap!"

I was tickled to arrive to work with no strains, sprains, or abrassions and that my bike didn't look like the one in the picture above.

I'll try to get some pics and a story or so posted from my Denver trip. The city is beautiful.

Ride Safe, watch those crazy cagers, and don't fall for their traps!

-Peace

3 comments:

Charlie6 said...

Good reaction to a bad traffic situation....stuff like that makes me appreciate my ABS brakes. Just grab a handful, and come smoothly to a full stop.

Just don't do like I did before I got a second non-abs equipped motorcycle, and develop the bad habit of just using the front brakes since it also invoked the rear brakes as they're linked.

Emergency stops on non-abs bikes involve both front and rear brake activation. Sounds like you've had good training.

irondad said...

Here is a round of applause and a sigh of relief from the instructor!

Mr. Motorcycle said...

Whew! You had me worried for a minute there! Glad "not this time!"