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Q: Who “Needs” a Steering Damper?

Guest ratchethack

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Guest ratchethack

Q: Who “Needs” a Steering Damper?

A: Video clips of three examples (see below)


Who You Gonna Refuse to Believe,

the Professionals, or Your Own Eyes?!

- or -

When involuntarily loading up your gauchies

Suddenly becomes the least of your problems :o


OBLIGATORY WARNING: There are no designer sound bites to be found here. So if you’re not sincerely interested enough in this topic (or this post) to read what for some would be beyond insufferable in the direction of too much effort, this may be excruciatingly painful! For those mired in deep denial of the facts on this subject, judging by your previous posts, the professional sources I’ve brought here will be as welcome to you as a feeding frenzy of starving piranha on your testicles – and I fully recognize that you’re determined to do your best to ignore and avoid facts – especially when they’re consistently backed up 100% by the most credible professional references that exist, as has been your habit elsewhere. In this case, -- I’m begging you -- please consider this my cordial invitation – Nay! My recommendation: Run away! Please immediately adjourn your insincere, un-interested butt on over to the Hooter’s thread, where your time might be much better spent.


Now if you’re compelled to reply to this post, anyone SINCERELY INTERESTED in the topic is welcome to do so. But for God’s sake, DO NOT complain about how long and overly-wordy something you haven’t read is, or “cherry pick” it for stuff you disagree with by pulling things out of context and/or blindly and/or deliberately leaping to false interpretations just to indulge some irrepressible compulsion to fling accusations of dementia and lunacy about, without any comprehension of what you're responding to! This says to me (and to everyone else) that not only are you not sincerely interested, but that you’re a bit of a flaming dolt. Why waste your time and everyone else’s? It’s likely to stick you with the silly personal embarrassment of stepping in something nasty that you can’t get yourself out of, and you’re likely to hurt yourself in the process. That’s the deal, take it or leave it. I hope you’ll consider this a fair enough exchange. If not, ‘bye now, and off to the happy hooter hunting grounds with you.


OK. I’ve finally had it with all the disinformation on this one lately, and can’t take it anymore. By now we’re all pretty well familiar with the select few hereabouts who’re evidently still stuck back in the Mud Age on the idea that steering dampers are the work o’ Beelzebub hisself. Next weekend is a major riding holiday in the USA. This year, like every year, sirens will wail and ambulances will roll to the scene of single vehicle moto crashes all across the fruited plain. But well before the annual carnage begins again, I figure it’s an optimum time to flush out the rest o’ the Luddites and dabblers in the occult and paranormal on this one – get ‘em all out in the open, so to speak, where they can expose the mindset that drives crash statistics far beyond where experience, knowlege, and the exercise of plain common sense would otherwise take the numbers. I expect some of the responses to this post will do just that. :bbblll:


Gross ignorance of motorcycle operation and controls is a daily killer that seems to be spreading like a hantavirus these days, and ain’t it a shame that in the present Age of Cheap Disinformation, that broadcasting falsehoods and Old Wive’s Tales can become a real potential threat to the safety of so many. Such has increasingly been the case here on this topic (among others), I’m afraid. <_<




Beelzebub hisself


And wot some seem convinced is among his most dangerous devices of pain, suffering, and torture -- The horribly misunderstood red-haired stepchild of motorcycling:




The misused, abused, and woefully ignored steering damper


A select few hereabouts, who, according to their posts, have obviously never used a steering damper properly, have previously subjected this Forum to a variety of entirely groundless, false, and misinformed statements (as if they were stating established facts) that steering dampers are worthless at best, unnecessary bling, only “needed” on moto’s with badly set up or wonky suspensions and/or steep fork rakes, crutches for people who don’t know how to ride, useless blingery for those who tend to parade hardware for “style points”, merely for those who “prefer the feel”, and have posted that they decrease steering “quickness”, along with the none too subtle implication (or stated outright) that their use as intended actually causes riders to crash!




PROPERLY USED, like any other adjustable control device, a steering damper will NEVER be the cause of a crash -- unless it’s defective! We’ve also seen hysterical charges that I (moi) have said that without the use of a steering damper, you’re automatically going to crash the next time you ride! In fact, I’ve never as much as hinted at anything remotely close to this, for cryin’ out loud! Can the use of a steering damper overcome instability due to bad chassis setup? No question about it. Properly used on a well set-up moto, it can also both considerably enhance control, and at the same time be one of a rider’s most cost-effective insurance policies on the road – above and beyond the skilled use of the throttle and/or brakes – as any skilled and accomplished rider who’s managed to live long enough by exercising common sense knows, and every seasoned racer knows – often by having paid the price of his or her education by hard experience.


Anyone sincerely interested in a well-supported OBJECTIVE understanding would be well advised to consider the most credible professional sources on this topic. Here, then, are mine:


Amidst all the vociferous hoodoo on this topic, the paranoia, the superstition, the empty speculation, the false self-righteous indignation, the anti-steering damper distortions, the ignorance, the mendacity, the common-as-dirt posturing, ego-conniptions, and lashing out wildly with malice aforethought that we’ve witnessed here previously by those who apparently despise steering dampers purely on an emotional and/or ignorance and/or paranormal basis, it might seem passing strange to the aforementioned that WERA would actually REQUIRE steering dampers – would it not??


Direct quote from the WERA Motorcycle Roadracing 2009 Rulebook:


“A steering damper is MANDATORY on all machines and must be mounted in a safe and workmanlike manner. The damper must not overly limit the amount of stock lock-to-lock handlebar travel.”

SOURCE LINK: http://www.wera.com/rulebook/?x=1098#ch8


For those not familiar with WERA:


WERA Motorcycle Roadracing, Inc is one of the oldest and largest national sanctioning bodies conducting motorcycle races at road courses across the United States. 2004 marked the 30th Anniversary for WERA Motorcycle Roadracing. There are over 3,000 motorcycle roadracers holding a competition license, with over 135 Lifetime Members (held a Competition License for ten consecutive years) 75 Mini License holders. WERA offers rider's schools and entry level motorcyle racing for anyone with a motorcycle and offers three types of motorcycle racing.

Could it be that WERA has intentionally been inflicting the risk of mass mayhem, severe blunt force trauma and dismemberment, not to mention acres of skin grafts upon its 3,000 licensed members by forcing them to use a useless, or worse – a diabolical suicide device against their will?! If so, how long d’you reckon it’ll be before someone gets hurt as a result and sues?? Hm. . .They’ve been enforcing the above rule continuously for 35 years and counting. . .


Now, we’ve heard repeatedly from those hereabouts who’ve made the typical rank Newb mistake of deciding that they HATE steering damping at parking lot speeds, and have evidently thereby developed a permanent personal policy to NEVER as much as attempt to use one correctly -- despite the fact that these devices ARE NEVER INTENDED TO BE USED AT PARKING LOT SPEEDS – being conspicuously provided as each and every one is, with a handy, ergonomically friendly means of quickly and easily adjusting “in and out on the fly” as needed according to road conditions and speed.


It seems that the most poorly informed (yes – I specifically refer to those who claim great mastery of riding skill over many decades, yet -- thuddingly simple as it is -- somehow haven’t learned how to use a steering damper!) and continue to be either badly misinformed, are somehow incapable of comprehending this, and/or are somehow not capable of both finding and turning the knob with their left hand. . . The NEGLECT of adjusting for road conditions and speed while making use of a steering damper being what is correctly considered OPERATOR ERROR.




So before we get to the 3 short, obviously self explanatory video clips below, let’s harpoon a few of the most odious of the many popular delusions about steering dampers for the benefit of those who’ve been understandably confused by the great wallopping profusion of DISINFORMATION around here lately, shall we?


1. We have some people hereabouts who seem to believe (as has actually been posted) that use of a steering damper “slows down” the quicker steering characteristics of a bike with a steeper fork rake! FALSE. Properly used, a steering damper can be set to provide stability, greater accuracy of line, and smoothness over rough or uneven pavement on 100 MPH sweepers, and at the same time provide the SAME stability, accuracy of line, and smoothness over a series of quick back-to-back 2nd gear hairpins -- without touching the adjustment. It’s literally impossible for a modern viscous-damped steering damper, when used as intended, to restrict the steering input of any road going motorcycle at anything above parking lot speeds! No rider on the planet can turn the bars fast enough at speed to experience resistance at the bars without crashing in the process! Below parking lot speeds it becomes an altogether different story – ergo the ability to adjust it back on the fly, as intended! Why-oh-why this seems so terribly difficult for so many to comprehend is beyond me, but there you have it. :huh2:


2. Next, we have the resident self-professed clairvoyants, who seem to believe they can predict – and therefore avoid -- all road conditions in advance that could ever give rise to uncontrollable front end oscillations, whether in light and shadow transitions, day or night, regardless of weather or passenger or cargo – even on a 100% correctly set up chassis! -- including every common possibility from tire punctures to potholes, ruts, ripples, frost heaves, rocks, sticks, leaves, sand, water, bricks, gravel, rabbits, chipmunks, wombats, armadillos, etc., and therefore they believe that they will ALWAYS be able to avoid each and every one of the aforementioned and more – and thus they apparently consider themselves 100% PERMANENTLY IMMUNE to any possibility of the dreaded tankslapper/fork wobble. FALSE. Unfortunately, many a rider’s first encounter with the “dance of death” has been their last earthly experience (see film clips below for examples of how this can happen). If my own first few near encounters with eternity many decades ago hadn’t been off-road, where my most violent embraces with terra firma were relatively benign, I might not be here to pester and annoy the self-professed clairvoyants today.


3. There seem to be a select few alleged long-time riders who’ve engaged in some form of competitive group moto behavior (notably in parking lots, where steering dampers have no value and CAN BE EXPECTED to be dangerous when improperly used!) who have stated that because they and their wives, cousins, friends, neighbors, and for all we know, anonymous unknowns whom they’ve never seen before and will never see again, have all allegedly claimed to’ve raced/ridden/toured/parking-lot paraded for XX years WITHOUT using a steering damper and “never had a problem” (on top of the fact that they UNANIMOUSLY HATE using them!), and have therefore concluded that there is no good reason for anyone anywhere to use one at any time other than personal preference, or to fulfill some perverse compulsion to hang a useless shiny bauble on their moto as a decoration. FALSE. See #2 above. The continuing justification for maintenance of the status quo according to the length of practice of one’s own ignorance continues to amaze and astound. . .


4. And last, but by no means least, we have those who’ve complained about steering dampers by virtue of the fact that theirs has broken, and operates intermittently! Now by all means, if your steering damper is not functioning as designed, either fix, replace, or remove it immediately!!! Would you ride a motorcycle capable of speeds well north of 100 MPH without breathing hard, knowing that your front brake was somehow failing intermittently without warning?? Hello? Anybody home??


But waddayagonna do with the mentality of those who’re bound and determined to remain oblivious to reality in open, abject ignorance of 1.) the expertise and recommendations of the Pro’s, 2.) the requirements of road race sanctioning boards, and 3.) the OEMs of motorcycles (including Guzzi) who’ve been fitting steering dampers continuously over their entire existence in the last century and this one -- including the model both you and I are riding today -- despite other mfgr's that don’t, as if this were “proof” of anything?


I reckon the best that can be done for some people in an attempt to keep them from the ever-present risk of leaving their own hide on the tarmac (body parts and various colorful bodily fluids and/or splattered semi-solids optional) is to provide them with access to the most highly qualified recommendations of the most reputable and credible professionals in the business who consistently both recommend and correctly use steering dampers themselves on ALL their many Guzzi’s, including V11's, 100% of the time, as I previously posted here:




Other‘n what we’re about to see below, I reckon that’s^ about all that can be done by way of the printed word. . . After that, it’s every man and/or woman for him/herself. . . And by all means, leave it to The Darwin Awards to retire the genetic codes of those whose ancestral lineage will (surprisingly or otherwise) be forever hence yanked from the gene pool. . .


Now then. For the already naturally pre-selected few hereabouts for whom all the above continues to be a bit too far beyond comprehension, and/or for whom it’s against their metaphysical and spiritual convictions based on nothing more than their FEELINGS, in opposition to their blind faith in the paranormal, for whom all of this is just plain too threatening to their fragile state of denial, and/or too much effort to read, and for whom all the above has therefore conveniently been flung in the gibberish bucket along with the very concept of the steering damper itself, (I’ll wager most of us all know who they are, but if not, I expect we’ll soon have a few spectacular reminders following this post!) we have 3 visual messages below that might be capable of penetrating even the thickest toxic mental sludge.


Here then, we have 3 different riders on 3 different moto’s – perhaps not unlike some hereabouts -- who evidently made up their minds (for whatever reason) that they had no interest in using a steering damper:


From a spectator’s perspective at the IOM TT (be sure to check the slo-mo at the end – it’s a dilly):


Whoopsie! (Part I) http://www.msgroup.org/images/tankslapper.asx


. . .and another, this one from an on-board cycle cam (rider’s perspective). Note that the instigator, according to the rider, was a “ripple strip”:


Whoopsie! (Part II)


. . .and another from an on-board cycle cam (another rider’s perspective from behind):


Whoopsie! (Part III)


(D’you reckon all 3 moto’s above were haunted?!) :rolleyes:


Now this is just me, but I figure it’s reasonable to assume that each of these riders were so inexperienced and/or so dull of wit that wot was caught on video was likely their first such episode (how many such wake-up calls would most riders with any common-sense a-tall need?!), and they’d previously either been negligently oblivious to the possibility, or they’d naively assumed it could NEVER happen to them (or both) on those obviously bad assumptions alone -- or they’d almost certainly have prepared themselves properly for THE RISK -- HOWEVER IMPROBABLE – and would’ve preferred to skip their own particular episodes altogether.




But there’s simply no explanation wotsoever for the behavior of some people, is there? :whistle:


THE STEERING DAMPER - an effective PREVENTIVE defense against the improbable, but inevitable – a device for both road and track that can (and often does) obviate the necessity of dialing 9-1-1 -- Wotta concept, eh? Using one 100% of the time on the road is a no-brainer for every well-informed rider I’ve ever known, myself included.


Now I couldn’t possibly care less who uses steering dampers on their Guzzi and who doesn’t, nor why or why not. It’s still for the most part a Free World (at least in the First World, or what’s left of it today). But regardless of the rationale used to justify not properly using one in the 3 cases captured on video above, seems to me any RATIONAL rider without some kind of a serious mental problem (or death wish) would at least be inclined to ask himself (or herself) as honestly and objectively as possible: Were all 3 of these riders’ choices NOT to make use of a steering damper under the circumstances likely well-informed, reasonable, solid, and WISE choices. . . OR OTHERWISE?? – That’s a YES or a NO kind of a Q. . .


Enquiring minds. . .(well, you know). . . :huh2:


NOTE (Part I): In the interest of full disclosure, I’ve intentionally included clear and comprehensive references above to the best and most appropriate professional expertise on the topic that I know of (one of which is specific to Guzzi’s, including V11’s), along with direct links to the highly qualified sources I’ve cited to back up the points I’ve made in this post, including full credentials by direct link. It doesn’t get much easier than this to check both the quality and the credibility of the references I’ve provided.


NOTE (Part II): May each and every reply from amongst the aforementioned mystics and Luddites who will undoubtedly take extraordinary exception to this post provide equal or better professional backup references to support their opposition, along with the heap of empty ridicule that experience tells me is soon to follow. REMINDER for the cognitively challenged: I’m deliberately not simply relying upon my own overwhelmingly positive 40+ year experience with steering dampers as the basis of my points above – Instead, I’ve brought the backup of well established professionals. If you’re not capable of finding contrary supporting sources outside of your own prejudices to support your opposition, and cannot (or will not) compare and contrast the credibility of your sources against mine – not to worry. You can be certain that I’ll do the honors for you. ;)


NOTE (Part III): Y’all come back from your Labor Day ride with all your hide now, hear? :thumbsup::race:

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NOTE (Part III): Y’all come back from your Labor Day ride...


I have strong reason to believe that your real identity is


Hazel Blears.


This appears to be irrefutable evidence.

Scientific statement: 'There is loads of proof'.



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Guest ratchethack
I have strong reason to believe that your real identity is


Hazel Blears.

As um, brilliantly insightful as your contribution is, BFG. . . :unsure:


Haven't you got the wrong Forum?


Unlike yourself, I don't generally spend much time over in the "special place", but don't the drag queen competitions generally take place over there in the banter room?




Ethel Merman prepares to execute a power squat

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I claim

1. A stabilizer device for detachably anchoring a motor bike rigidly stabilized crosswise of the rear of a motor vehicle while being transported, said device comprising a pair of ball coupler sub-units one of which includes means for rigidly mounting the same on the rear of a motor vehicle and the other of which includes means for rigidly mounting the same on the upper part of a motor bike, an elongated rigid stabilizer member having a spherical surfaced socket at each end thereof opening laterally through one side thereof and sized to seat over the ball of a respective one of said ball coupler sub-units to hold a motor bike rigidly stabilized in an upright position crosswise of the rear of a motor vehicle, a manually operable elongated locking jaw pivotally connected to each end of said stabilizer member with the locking end thereof normally positioned to engage the ball of a respective one of said ball couplers to hold the same assembled in a respective one of said spherical sockets, a pair of U-shaped spring keepers one leg of which is insertable through aligned holes at each end of said stabilizer and an adjacent portion of each of said locking jaws to lock said jaws positively against opening so long as said stabilizer member is assembled to said ball coupler sub-units, and said stabilizer member being quickly and fully released from each of said rigidly mounted coupler sub-units by simply withdrawing said spring keepers from said aligned openings and pivoting said locking jaws outwardly away from contact with the adjacent ball of said ball coupler sub-units.

2. A quickly detachable stabilizer device as defined in claim 1 characterized in that said stabilizer member comprises a tubular sleeve provided with oppositely pitched threads internally of its opposite ends, said spherical sockets being formed in one end of a pair of generally tubular housings each having a threaded shank fixed to the other end thereof, and said threaded shanks being mateable with a respective one of the threaded ends of said tubular sleeve and adjustable therealong to vary the length of said stabilizer member.

3. A stabilizer device as defined in claim 1 characterized in that said keepers each have one leg thereof deformed and shaped to embrace and resiliently grip a juxtaposed position of said stabilizer member to retain said keepers in assembled position when the other leg of said keeper is assembled through said aligned openings.

This invention relates to devices for securing an article to the rear of a motor vehicle, and more particularly to a rugged versatile stabilizer device for use in anchoring a motor bike or the like article to the rear of a motor vehicle in a simple and highly versatile manner.

The use of the very popular motor bikes in urban areas is seriously handicapped and hazardous owing to congested traffic conditions and totally inadequate opportunities to utilize the potentials of a bike. Accordingly, it is a common practice to transport the bike out of urban areas for use in open and rugged country where the bike can be enjoyed unhampered by pedestrian and vehicle traffic. This necessitates the use of some means for attaching the bike securely and safely to a truck, trailer or the rear of a passenger vehicle. Special transport trailers have been developed to meet this need but these must be certified for such use, registered and licensed at considerable expense and such trailers involve storage problems when not in use. Proposals have also been made for bike transport accessories securable to the chassis of a vehicle but these occupy an objectionable amount of space, are costly and interfere with access to the storage space from the rear of the vehicle.

In order to obviate these and other disadvantages and shortcomings of prior expedients for transporting motor bikes, there is provided by this invention an inexpensive versatile stabilizer readily installed in various ways on vehicles of many types and providing a quickly attached and detached stabilizing connection between the transport vehicle and the upper part of a motor bike. The stabilizer comprises a readily extendable and contractable tie rod equipped with ball and socket couplings at its ends one of which is anchorable to some part of a vehicle body and the other of which is anchorable to the frame, handlebars or other component of a motor bike. Each coupling includes a spring pressed jaw cooperating with the ball and socket to lock the coupling closed and including a safety keeper safeguarding against any possibility of the coupling opening unintentionally.

It is therefore a primary object of the present invention to provide a rugged stabilizer bar equipped with fast-action couplings at its opposite ends and readily installable between a vehicle body and a motor bike to stabilize and anchor the bike in place during transport.

Another object of the invention is the provision of a stabilizer readily adjustable in length and equipped with ball and socket couplings at either end one of which is mountable on the upper part of a motor bike and the other of which is mountable on the body of a vehicle thereby to support the bike in a secure upright position for transport over the highway.

These and other more specific objects will appear upon reading the following specification and claims and upon considering in connection therewith the attached drawing to which they relate.

Referring now to the drawing in which a preferred embodiment of the invention is illustrated:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the rear of a passenger vehicle showing the invention stabilizer in use to support a motor bike across the rear of a passenger vehicle;

FIG. 2 is a view showing the invention stabilizer in use to support a motor bike across the rear end of a house trailer;

FIG. 3 is a side elevational view of an enlarged scale of the stabilizer per se as illustrated in FIG. 1; and

FIG. 4 is a fragmentary cross-sectional view taken along line 4--4 on FIG. 3.

The stabilizer device, designated generally 10, typically comprises a turn buckle 11 having left and right hand threaded bores at its opposite ends mating with the correspondingly threaded shanks 12,13 the ends of which are welded to ball and socket couplings 14,15. As here shown, the turn buckle has a tubular main body of any suitable length depending upon the manner in which the stabilizer is to be used. As employed in FIG. 1, the stabilizer is relatively long whereas in FIG. 2 it is relatively short. The threaded shanks 12 and 13 are equppped with winged lock nuts 16,16 which serve to lock the turn buckle in any desired adjusted position.

As herein shown, the ball and socket couplings 14, 15 are identical and a description of one will suffice for both. Coupling 14 has a channel-shaped main body stamped from heavy gauge sheet metal and terminates at one end in a tubular section welded to the threaded shank 12. The opposite end of the coupling body is provided with a socket 20 having a spherical seat for the ball portion 21 of the coupling. This ball is integral with a cylindrical shank 22 having an annular stiffening enlargment 23 about its midlength. The remainder of shank 22 is threaded as indicated at 24 and is provided with an assembly nut 25 for clamping the ball component to some rigid object, such as a portion of the vehicle body 28 forward of the access closure to the storage compartment of the vehicle.

Coupling 14 is provided with a locking jaw 30 of channel shape in cross-section and having a loose fit between the sidewalls of the main body 19 of the coupling. Jaw 32 is held pivotably assembled to member 19 by a pivot pin 31, and is normally urged to its closed position illustrated in full lines by a compression spring 32. The other end of jaw 30 is notched at 34 to embrace the adjacent portion of coupling ball 21 and cooperates with socket 20 in holding the ball 21 captive within this socket so long as the jaw is closed. However, when the jaw is pivoted to its dotted line position, the notched end 34 is displaced away from the ball and permits the coupling to be lifted away from the ball.

The locking jaw of the coupling is held positively locked in its closed position by a U-shaped safety keeper pin 35 best shown in FIG. 4. For this purpose, the main bodies of coupling 14 and locking jaw 30 are provided with aligned openings 36 to one side of pivot pin 31. When the locking jaw is in its normal closed position, openings 36 are in alignment with one another and have a loose sliding fit with the straight leg 37 of keeper 35. The other leg 38 of the keeper is of serpentine shape and suitably shaped to straddle and engage the main body of the coupling to hold the keeper firmly in assembled position in the manner made clear by FIG. 4. The keeper is preferably made of stiff spring stock and must be forcibly inserted and withdrawn from its fully assembled position to release the locking jaw for opening movement in opposition to spring 32.

Coupling 15 at the right hand end of the stabilizer is constructed in the same manner as described above, but its threaded shank 24 is assembled to a clamping band 40 encircling some part of the motor bike such as the handle bar 41. Clamp 40 and the ball portion 21 of coupling 15 may remain firmly anchored to the motor bike at all times and likewise ball 21 of coupling 14 may remain permanently installed on the body 28 of the vehicle or to a bracket 44 permanently anchored to the rear of a house trailer or the like 45.

The weight of motor bike 50 may be supported on any type of vehicle in any conventional manner as by brackets 51,51 suitably secured rigidly to the rear of the chassis and having pockets embracing and seating the lower portions of the front and rear bike wheels in well known manner.

To mount the bike 50 for transport on a passenger car the front and rear wheels of the bike 50 are seated in pockets 51 and the bike is steadied in an upright position while the stabilizer coupling is closed. This is accomplished by manually depressing the locking jaw 30 of coupling 15 until the bar 21 carried by the handle bar is seated in socket 20. The jaw is then released and spring 32 acts to hold the jaw closed. Thereafter, coupling 14 is similarly assembled over the ball 21 fixed to the rear central portion of the vehicle body. Each of the safety keepers 35 is inserted through holes 36 in each coupling to lock jaw 30 closed. The weight of the motor bike is now supported in brackets 51,51 and anchored securely in an upright position in these brackets by stabilizer 10. Acceleration, deceleration and braking of the car can be performed in the usual manner without risk of the bike becoming dislodged or moving in any direction.

At the destination or point of use of the bike, the bike is easily dismounted from carrying position simply by withdrawing the keeper 35 from coupling 15, depressing the handle end of locking jaw 30 and lifting the outer end of the stabilizer away from ball 21. This having been done, the bike is free for lifting out of pockets 51. While the bike is in use, the stabilizer may remain attached to the rear of the transport vehicle. Alternatively, the stabilizer may be detached from the vehicle simply by removing the other keeper 35 and depressing the locking jaw. When ready to reload the bike, the user simply operates the stabilizer couplings in the manner described previously to restore the bike to its former safe transport position.

While the particular motor bike stabilizer herein shown and disclosed in detail is fully capable of attaining the objects and providing the advantages hereinbefore stated, it is to be understood that it is merely illustrative of the presently preferred embodiment of the invention and that no limitations are intended to the detail of construction or design herein shown other than as defined in the appended claims.

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Guest ratchethack

Has there yet been a thread locked due to filibusering behavior by a MODERATOR ??


Could this be yet another history making thread in process??


Enquiring minds. . . (well, you know). . . :huh2:

. . .I figure it’s an optimum time to flush out the rest o’ the Luddites and dabblers in the occult and paranormal on this one – get ‘em all out in the open, so to speak, where they can expose the mindset that drives crash statistics far beyond where experience, knowlege, and the exercise of plain common sense would otherwise take the numbers. I expect some of the responses to this post will do just that. :bbblll:

Err. . . By his "unique" mode of self-expression, unless I miss my guess, I do b'lieve we have our very first. :P

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Om a serious note



If I am coasting ( lets say decelerating because i am in gear ) at 30-50 mph ( the only times I have tried this ) in a straight line , and I take both hands off the bars and place them on the gas cap , I notice a gentle oscillation in the bars- maybe 1/4-3/8 of an inch, - is this normal ?


The OEM damper is MIA on my bike , I purchased it that way.

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I got as far as "On a serious note" and you lost me.


I don't think you're going to get this so-called "serious" in this thread. Too late. That bus has left.


(check your tire pressures and make sure the tires aren't cupped)

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Guest ratchethack
Om a serious note



If I am coasting ( lets say decelerating because i am in gear ) at 30-50 mph ( the only times I have tried this ) in a straight line , and I take both hands off the bars and place them on the gas cap , I notice a gentle oscillation in the bars- maybe 1/4-3/8 of an inch, - is this normal ?


The OEM damper is MIA on my bike , I purchased it that way.

Scott, thanks for the sincere Q. ;) Whether this is "normal" or not depends on a few things. When it happens, does it come and go at different speeds? What is the frequency of oscillation -- that is, very quick vibrations, or long enough to be a few times/sec or longer? Does the frequency or amplitude -- your 1/4-3/8" -- vary with speed?


Without knowing any of the above, it looks to me like it could be normal or near-normal bar movement due to a slightly out-of-round tire (or unevenly worn, as Jason mentioned) and/or a slightly unbalanced wheel. :bike:

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Om a serious note



If I am coasting ( lets say decelerating because i am in gear ) at 30-50 mph ( the only times I have tried this ) in a straight line , and I take both hands off the bars and place them on the gas cap , I notice a gentle oscillation in the bars- maybe 1/4-3/8 of an inch, - is this normal ?


The OEM damper is MIA on my bike , I purchased it that way.



As Jason said check your tires too. A flat centered rear tire can cause a, a w, a wo, a wob, a wobble. There, I said it.

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I do feel exonerated to have replaced my damper after it began to leak and I drained all the oil out.


I certainly didn't like the way it "felt" (whatever that is) without the damping and too many experienced riders gasped and cast aspersions when I mentioned my Grand Solution of taking the oil out to prevent the leaking.


Seemed brilliant at the time. :nerd:


I am waiting for the final fitment to report on my new, improved replacement for the leaky Bitubo.


Rock Steady, docc

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I believe the assumption being made here is that the bikes in the videos lack steering dampers and the implication being made is that if they had had dampers, they would not have crashed or wobbled. It is an assumption, though, as nothing in the videos shows whether a damper was fitted or not. The assumption and implication are possibly true, but we don't and can't know. What if they did have dampers? I would find it totally believable that the two bikes in the videos I viewed (the third did not open on my Mac) did have dampers. Both bikes appeared to be either on the track or track-prepped bikes. If all the racing orgs specify that dampers must be fitted, then these bikes would likely have dampers. Yes, assumptions but logical ones. Plenty of bikes with steering dampers have gone into incredible wobbles. I've been on at least three of them.


I always use a damper on the Eldo because it has wobbled on me and because I know folks have been killed as a result of their tendency to wobble. Last summer, on the way back from the National, a friend and I swapped bikes. My Eldo went into a wobble on him at about 70mph. I was way ahead on his Eldo and so didn't see it, but friends riding behind him said it was a near-death experience. The damper didn't prevent the wobble but may have prevented worse. None of us can say. What I can say is that immediately prior to him and I swapping, I had been riding that bike at 120 mph through some great sweepers going so hard that my friend Stefano, who was riding behind on my Ballabio, commented, "I could not believe it. I was going over 120 mph and I couldn't keep up!" It was a little twitchy but never wobbled. Who knows? Maybe I am a human steering damper? I have a damper on the Ballabio, too, though I did run it for over a year without one after the stocker failed. Never a hint of a wobble without it. I lucked into a free replacement, so I put it on just in case. I pretty much keep it a zero to reduce the heaviness that more damping adds to the steering feel.

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Guest ratchethack

From the "You can lead a horse to water" file:


O' course, WERA and other org's can require steering damper installation, but it's quite impossible to enforce proper use. . . "I'll show those frickin' idiots I can get around any requirement they throw at me. . ." :rolleyes:


When a tank-slapper begins, it's too late to dial up damping. In fact, it's often so violent that it's impossible to hold on to the bars. Many a rider has broken his hands on final approach to the scene of the crash, still mounted, (whilst either rapidly loading up his gauchies, or in full-on sphincter lock, depending on the order his reflexes kick in) in a futile attempt to get his hands back on. . . :huh:


This is just me, but I figure once you've filled up the seat o' your leathers and broken your fingers &/or metacarpals, you might as well relax, you're only along for the ride at that point -- however short and harsh it's going to be. . . :unsure:

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I believe the assumption being made here is that the bikes in the videos lack steering dampers and the implication being made is that if they had had dampers, they would not have crashed or wobbled.


It is an assumption, though, as nothing in the videos shows whether a damper was fitted or not. The assumption and implication are possibly true, but we don't and can't know.


What if they did have dampers?


If they did have dampers then I think Ratchet should have to remove his damper - just to be safe!

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Wow ratch... you've been saving up for that one... I don't have then energy to either read or rebute.


My observations. My Scura has one, but I keep it set on full soft, I really don't think it needs it. My 03 R6 track bike w/ an R1 front end needs one but doesn't have one, (I get some nice shake at a few turns at Barber). I found tank slappers are easy to fix, give it more gas and relax - this helps to unload front tire and take unnecesssary rider inputs out of the equation. Typical riders chop the throttle and grap the bars with all of their might when the bike begins to oscillate, this causes weight to transfer and loads front more which just makes the situation worse. The rider is also now helping transfer engery from the bars back into the bike.


The second video was caused by rear wheel spin, he even points it out. Perhaps better throttle control would have helped more. I'll take a little wobble over a highside anyday.

The last video looked like a recent model GSXR - OEM steering damper. Looked like it was a rider malfunction.


If I am coasting ( lets say decelerating because i am in gear ) at 30-50 mph ( the only times I have tried this ) in a straight line , and I take both hands off the bars and place them on the gas cap , I notice a gentle oscillation in the bars- maybe 1/4-3/8 of an inch, - is this normal ?


No it is not, try keeping your hands on the bars, that is normal.

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