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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Man I finally realized what countersteering is after searching online about it and finding this video only to be very P.Oed at how complicated everyone made it seem, at the MSF course and online. Everytime someone brought it up or tried to explain it I was like whaaaa and for some reason I kept picturing the bike "drifting" like it was in a recoverable lowside.

Anyway heres the link for the simple explination, its the first vid at the top, let the guy talk for a minute and then hell get on the bike and make it oh so simple for all that couldnt picture it in their heads off words alone.

What is countersteering?

Hopefully this will hellp alot of people here become safer riders, maybe a Mod could sticky if the subject hasnt already been explained here in a video with a good demonstration.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
bump, will a mod please delete the other doouble post that i put up on accident SORRY!!!!!!
 

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Wannabeabigbike Owner
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I KNOW about it, but that was still as good an explanation as I think I have seen without getting all wrapped up in the physics of it.
Thanks for posting it.
 

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Patriot Guardian
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The problem that I have with the common explanations and videos is the inclusion of the statement "momentary"... it's NOT momentary. The videos are shot at relatively low speeds, so while countersteering is used to initiate the turn, we then see the wheel turn INTO the turn to maintain and complete.

This doesn't work at highway speeds.

At 45mph, I can remove my left hand from the grip, OPEN my right hand so the palm is touching the back of the grip, and push the right grip to initiate a right turn. Push harder and the turn gets tighter. Relax pressure and the turn widens.

The countersteering effort is continuous through the turn, until the speed is low enough that conventional "steering" is needed.
 

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The problem that I have with the common explanations and videos is the inclusion of the statement "momentary"... it's NOT momentary. The videos are shot at relatively low speeds, so while countersteering is used to initiate the turn, we then see the wheel turn INTO the turn to maintain and complete.

This doesn't work at highway speeds.

At 45mph, I can remove my left hand from the grip, OPEN my right hand so the palm is touching the back of the grip, and push the right grip to initiate a right turn. Push harder and the turn gets tighter. Relax pressure and the turn widens.

The countersteering effort is continuous through the turn, until the speed is low enough that conventional "steering" is needed.
Actually it is momentary...if it wasn't you might flip the bike as the video explained. To say that the countersteering effect is continuous through the turn is incorrect. It may be true if one does a right turn with their left hand off the grip because pushing with the right hand would tend to make the front wheel turn left, but that wouldn't be a very smart way to make a turn...why would you want to do it that way in the first place?
 

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Patriot Guardian
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why would you want to do it that way in the first place?
To verify exactly what happens. I wouldn't ride like that normally.

Like I said... whether it make sense or not, CONTINUOUS pressure is needed on the right grip to maintain a right turn at highway speeds. In the turn, pressing harder tightens the turn, relaxing pressure brings the bike back up and out of the turn.

It's very slight... looking at the triple clamp, you can barley tell that the forks are turned at all, but it IS continuous through the turn. If you reverse pressure and attempt to turn the bars to the right, you will reverse the turn and make an ess turn.
 

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Patriot Guardian
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When you are pushing and leaning, you ARE countersteering. That is the ONLY way that a 2-wheeled vehicle can turn.

There's a video on Youtube where a guy effectively proves it.
He mounted a pair of dummy handlebars to his frame. No matter how extreme his body movements, the bike wavered only slightly from a straight line.
 

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I was taught it was a momentary event and the result--for me anyways--was a lot of mid turn corrections. I'd apply pressure to the bar and then let up, trying to keep the bike in line by leaning (sometimes almost throwing) my body in the direction of the turn (I weigh about 180)--the bike would start stand up anyway. People offered that I must be uncomfortable turning.
Once I learned to apply pressure all the way through the turn, the mid turn corrections stopped, turns became a lot more fun, and I learned to use my body to affect the bikes lean angle.
 

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Seems odd to me how some folks want to complicate this counter steering thing. It is just like Rich says. If you want to understand all of the physics involved then more power to ya. Otherwise just accept it, cause when you are out riding you are counter steering whether you believe it or not. Go ahead and make that "momentary" push on the bars and see how far you get around that 90 degree turn...lol.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
From my understanding countersteering is ONLY the action of dipping the bike into the turn by throwing it off balance. You steer through a corner, the counter part is when you steer the other way to quickly get the bike to lean into the turn. Thats what i got from the video.
 

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Patriot Guardian
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Thats what i got from the video.
Because the videos are shot at relatively slow speeds.

Try it at 35 or 45.

When you push into a 90 degree turn, you quickly drop to a speed that requires "normal" steering.

Like I said... try it.

Go to the mall after it's closed and try some high speed FULL circles.
Don't just take the "outside" hand off of the bar and plop it in your lap... go ahead and "cover" the grip, but don't touch it.
Open your right palm and push... the bike will turn.
Push harder, it will turn tighter.

If the countersteering were ONLY to "dip" the bike and initiate the turn, then you would have to pull on the bar to tighten the turn.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Im just saying what I got from the video made it easier for me to understand the concept of countersteering, I havnt had enough riding experience to argue about it cause if I did I would and I cant go try it now because of snow and bike problems.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
If the countersteering were ONLY to "dip" the bike and initiate the turn, then you would have to pull on the bar to tighten the turn.
when you push on the bar, your pushing it down not forward right? pushing it down increases lean angle correct? and the bike naturally wants to stand up if its moving at speed correct??? So if you push down on the right and the bike goes to the right, how is that counter anything:confused:
 

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when you push on the bar, your pushing it down not forward right? pushing it down increases lean angle correct? and the bike naturally wants to stand up if its moving at speed correct??? So if you push down on the right and the bike goes to the right, how is that counter anything:confused:
You are pushing forward on the grip. Puching down would make it very hard to make the bike turn. When I just started riding I was pushing down on the grip and I was having a hard time turning.
 

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You know, I never even really thought about what I do at 35 mph on Vernon ave in Kinston when I swerve suddenly to avoid the manholes and are sunk in the pavement 3 feet. I do the counter steering thing but didnt notice that I did it until I saw this video. It is amazing what the human mind can do without even realizing it.
 

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When you are pushing and leaning, you ARE countersteering. That is the ONLY way that a 2-wheeled vehicle can turn.

There's a video on Youtube where a guy effectively proves it.
He mounted a pair of dummy handlebars to his frame. No matter how extreme his body movements, the bike wavered only slightly from a straight line.
Try here Superbike School Movie

Not affiliated with the school in any way.

ccla
 

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Patriot Guardian
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when you push on the bar, your pushing it down not forward right?
Nope... pushing it forward.
pushing it down increases lean angle correct?
Nope. The lean angle is determined by the speed, radius of the turn, and the balance point of the bike. In a turn, shifting your weight outward will increase the lean angle, hanging off the inside will decrease the lean angle. The center of gravity of the rider and bike combined (2 separate "systems") will have a specific average lean angle given speed and radius.
and the bike naturally wants to stand up if its moving at speed correct???
Correct. Set a throttle lock, jump off the bike, and it will go straight until it runs out of road or gas.
 
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