Sand on the road


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WingAdmin
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Sand on the road

Postby WingAdmin » Mon Mar 30, 2015 7:49 pm



It was a gorgeous, sunny day today, with temperatures in the low 50's - a far cry from the 18 hours of snow we had on Friday. The roads were clear and dry. I saw quite a few motorcycles riding around, a sure sign of Spring!

However...just because it's warm out doesn't mean it's great for riding. I unfortunately came across an ambulance and two police cars blocking a lane at a four-lane intersection while driving home. When I got close, I could see the back end of a cruiser type motorcycle with a huge wide rear tire, laying on the ground, and the paramedics talking to its rider who was sitting on the curb - thankfully looking relatively uninjured. One look and it was easy to see what happened: the rider had been turning right, went right through the large amount of sand on the road on the corner, and went down. You could see the skid marks in the sand, leading right to his bike on the ground.

That sand is slippery like ice, particularly in a corner. Until the street cleaners get out to start cleaning it up, we have to be very, very careful when out riding. I have been bit by it myself a couple times - unseen sand in a corner, giving my bike a quick sideways hop (and my heart a quick stop for a moment) - thankfully not enough to dump me, but enough to make me pay closer attention to road conditions.

I know cafegoldwing_lover crashed his 83 Interstate. BullCBX crashed after encountering fine sand and gravel in a blind corner. quikcarl61 lost his GL1500 to gravity when at a stop, he put his foot down on some sand.

How many others have had bad encounters with sand?

Between the sand and the potholes and the drivers who aren't used to seeing motorcycles on the road, this is a very dangerous time of year to be riding. Let's be careful out there!



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A2Wing
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Re: Sand on the road

Postby A2Wing » Tue Mar 31, 2015 1:07 am

Loose sand has gotten me twice. Once with my 454LTD Kawasaki. Approaching a stop sign at the bottom of a hill, I was barely moving, with my foot down and my hand on the front brake. The front wheel locked, and gravity caused the bike to slide downhill. The sand was so fine that I didn't even see it. As the bike slid sideways, my foot also slid through the sand, so I couldn't even stand up, and, down we went. Only damage was a busted windscreen, and my ego, as I had to explain to a friend, why I went down.

The other time was with an '84 BMW R80. Going around a curve, I got into some sand. Trying to recover, I got into some gravel. My fault. I was going too fast, and not paying attention. Me and the bike went down, and parted ways. I slid some distance, but when I stopped, I watched as the bike continued on it's side, left the roadway, hit a bump, and flipped up into the air, and over to it's other side, coming down and hitting the dirt pretty hard. Lost some blood that time with some painful road rash. I'm a believer in helmets and good riding jackets.

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Re: Sand on the road

Postby tom84std » Tue Mar 31, 2015 6:58 am

I learned my lesson in Colorado. We rode a lot through the central/northwestern regions in 2003 and 2005. Everywhere at intersections, usually accumulated more in the areas just adjacent to the traveled surfaces. About 1/8" granite pebbles. Generally round. Just like little ball bearings. Put my foot down at a stop and had to be careful. Little ball bearings. After learning they were there I was very careful but that's only after pulling a groin muscle. I stopped in a town and bought shoes with a heavy tread pattern. That helped. I rode the bike near stops and through intersections like I was on ice, limited side loads and leaning. Evidently common in Colorado in the spring because of gravel spread during the winter.

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Re: Sand on the road

Postby tagert » Wed Apr 01, 2015 4:12 am

Luckily I had parked my '96 wing for a day ride to Asheville, nc with a friend. It was a clear sunny day, temps in the 70's and we were riding 2007 750 Aeros. While exiting from the interstate to a by-pass, I hit some very fine sand/gravel mix, saw my front tire zip towards the outside and "Wham", no time to look, brake, evade, anything before I hit. There was severe damage to the bike, over $2500.00, pretty good road rash on forearm, roughed up knee, torn riding jacket, jeans and pretty heavy damage to the chin bar on my helmet. The funny thing about it all was I was only going about 35 mph. Thanks to the helmet for doing it/s job.

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WA9FWT
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Re: Sand on the road

Postby WA9FWT » Wed Apr 01, 2015 9:29 am

tagert wrote:Luckily I had parked my '96 wing for a day ride to Asheville, nc with a friend. It was a clear sunny day, temps in the 70's and we were riding 2007 750 Aeros. While exiting from the interstate to a by-pass, I hit some very fine sand/gravel mix, saw my front tire zip towards the outside and "Wham", no time to look, brake, evade, anything before I hit. There was severe damage to the bike, over $2500.00, pretty good road rash on forearm, roughed up knee, torn riding jacket, jeans and pretty heavy damage to the chin bar on my helmet. The funny thing about it all was I was only going about 35 mph. Thanks to the helmet for doing it/s job.


When I read what sand can do too your ridding, it just reminds me one more time that I made a wise choice to add the extra wheels too my ride. A lot safer for me for sure with 4 wheels holding me up. But I can tell you, I would still be riding with two wheels if it wasn't for my age at 75.I want to keep ridding as long as I can.. :)

73 WA9FWT Phil

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Paulcf
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Re: Sand on the road

Postby Paulcf » Wed Apr 01, 2015 9:49 am

Sand and gravel (mostly) here is a definite problem in the spring time. Fortunately the nature of the stuff is that cars push it to the sides of the road or into the centre of the road. Knowing this, I always ride my Goldwing to a stop directly in the centre of the lane. Yes, on top of all the muck and gravel and sand! Reason I do this? Simple. When I put my feet down, they go down on the bare asphalt where the car tires drive and thus I have good traction for underneath my feet. When I leave the traffic light/intersection, I proceed slowly of course, but once you get into the intersection it is always free of gravel due to the cross traffic and by the time I reach the other side of the intersection, I have moved over and riding in either the left or right 'wheel track' on the road.
MOBILIS IN MOBILI

tagert
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Re: Sand on the road

Postby tagert » Wed Apr 01, 2015 7:10 pm

I'm still young at heart, full of daring-do and all, but still get into the sand and gravel occasionally. Like you I've learned to slow down, but this time I wasn't slow enough. Guess you're right, at age 75 things should slow down. I guess I learn a little slower. I recently turned 77, still need my Wing for the road and the Aero for around town. I think us "elders" should stick together and learn together. :)

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Re: Sand on the road

Postby Harp » Thu Apr 02, 2015 1:42 pm

I saw that it was really nice in Cleveland yesterday and went for a ride. As Admin mention we had snow on Friday. I kept running into a fine layer of salt that we haven't had enough rain to wash away. I ended up shortening the ride and heading for home after a slight slip and catch on a right turn. Not really even broken in yet with only 2000 miles - don't wanna dump it yet!

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Re: Sand on the road

Postby coy55boy » Thu Apr 02, 2015 11:33 pm

I got introduced to the dangers of sand and potholes at the same time. Back in the mid-late 70's on my first bike in NW Louisiana. I was coming around a curve in Bossier City and I was coming in a little 'hot'. It was dark and I was riding a little too close to the center line. I felt the rear tire begin to lose traction as it slipped 3 or 4 times. I was reducing throttle and thought I had it under control, when all of a sudden, there it was. The pothole monster! I had no time to maneuver. The angle of lean was acute and when the leading edge of the front tire hit the opposite side of the hole, it turned hard right with enough force to break my throttle wrist. We went down and somehow I was in front of the bike sliding down the street and into the parking lot of a gas station. I ended up leaning against a pump and the bike came to rest 7 or 8 feet away with the throttle locked wide open. The bike was scratched up some but still drivable, so after a few minutes I picked it up and drove home...broke wrist and all. I didn't learn for several years about the break. Now the S.O.B. hurts whenever it's cold and wet like it was that night.

Out here in the deserts of Arizona, we have to be on the lookout for sand/gravel after every rain and not just in the center line. Washes flood over roads in low spots and leave debris across the entire road. In the springtime, one must watch for larger rocks that break off and roll down the mountains and sometimes are just sitting there in the middle of the road waiting for some unsuspecting motorist to happen by.

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Re: Sand on the road

Postby Happytrails » Fri Apr 03, 2015 9:34 pm

WingAdmin wrote:Iost his GL1500 to gravity when at a stop, he put his foot down on some sand.

How many others have had bad encounters with sand?

Between the sand and the potholes and the drivers who aren't used to seeing motorcycles on the road, this is a very dangerous time of year to be riding. Let's be careful out there!


Good points. Was riding about 2 wks ago on a sunny clear but cold day. Was very surprised just how much gravel and sand there was at nearly every street corner. My wing is a little tall for me so I am on balls of my feet and being that the bike is so wide its very easy for my boots to skate on gravel and sand. Even being careful I was slipping a lot at stop signs.

Weather permitting may be able to do some riding this holiday weekend. Be on watch for parents riding in cars with sugar hyper passengers aboard.
1991 GL1500 SE Anniversary Edition
Sun Flare Gold Metallic
Vallant Brown Inset

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Happytrails
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Re: Sand on the road

Postby Happytrails » Fri Apr 03, 2015 9:45 pm

tom84std wrote:stopped in a town and bought shoes with a heavy tread pattern.


This has me thinking maybe I wear my heavy workboots if I ride again this spring. My riding boots have sort of smooth bottoms like you would see on a racing boot. Makes me wonder if I shouldn't be considering adventure riding boots with the heavier treads.


1991 GL1500 SE Anniversary Edition
Sun Flare Gold Metallic
Vallant Brown Inset


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