Got a sportbike that wants the best rubber?

Discussion in 'Gear & Equipment' started by faffi, Aug 12, 2013.

  1. kneedragon

    kneedragon Re-Member ... ?

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    Looking for a good way to express this. ...

    Many years ago, somebody in a car magazine made the point that doing solid tests, like laptimes or braking distances, should be approached with caution. The difference between 'good' and 'bad' is often small, sometimes non-existent. I forget exactly what he gave as an example, but... If you put huge swaybars and wheels, race slicks, on a Morris Minor, it'd go around a skidpan at more or less the same lateral acc as a sports car. So, did that mean it was as good? Or that all you had to do to 'fix' it was give huge reserves of lateral grip?

    Modern bikes are a lot better. Exactly how big the difference is on the stopwatch is hard to say, and if you could accurately measure it, the result might not fall in line with what you expect. But they feel a damn sight better to ride. They encourage riders of intermediate experience and skill to push on, where the old ones did not.
     
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  2. SCC

    SCC Old slow and forgetful

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    I remember a Top Gear episode where they were trying to make a Renault thing as fast as an Evo Mitsubishi. They put better wheels and tyre on it and went slower. Now they are idiots, no question when it comes to modifying cars but honestly any modern tyre of reputable manufacturer is pretty good.
    If a tyre that gives me confidence wet or dry on the road I don't care if its 3 seconds slower than an old tyre around a race track.
    New tyres are great, 80's tyres were rubbish by comparison, 90's a bit better and so on.
     
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  3. kneedragon

    kneedragon Re-Member ... ?

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    Some things respond better to tuning and hotrodding than others. That's one of the things that marks the original as 'good'. I don't remember that show. I do remember one where they were given a worked EVO (I think it was a 9) to play with, and they did a laptime, which blew them away, so they went and got a Lambo (sitting in the studio, I think) to do a back to back. The end result was a 20k EVO with about 10 ~ 15k (Pounds) spent on go fast, was not only just as quick as a Lambo, it was a bloody lot easier to use, ie., pretty much anybody who could drive a bit, could get the EVO around their track as quick as the Stig could get the Lambo, in spite of the fact that the Lambo cost about 4 times what the EVO had, including all the performance work.

    I'm trying to remember what the EVO had done... Mostly, it had the boost turned right up. They'd pretty much doubled the original power.
     
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    #13 kneedragon, Aug 15, 2013
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2013
  4. GrahamB

    GrahamB Decaying member

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    A lot of the discussion in the Fast Bikes and other comparisons were about trail-braking right to the apex, and how fast the bike could be flicked from knee to knee in a chicane. You don't do that on the road, unless it's the same road you ride everyday, and then one day there'll be some gravel and they'll cart you off in a box.

    Re Faffi's comment : 55° to 60° is actually a lot, a difference of 20% in lateral force, hence 10% more speed at the apex. However I think tyre development lately has been largely about building tyres able to work with heavy bikes for a whole race. With 98kg 250's, the riders had to pace themselves a bit to avoid destroying the tyres. With 145kg Moto2's, I think they run harder most of the race on most tracks. Same comment a fortiori for the lard-arse MotoGP bikes, that are 30kg heavier than the 500's.
     
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  5. kneedragon

    kneedragon Re-Member ... ?

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    Actually, that's one reason I like the MotoGP bikes. Just like Mr Honda or Mr Ducati, I want the best riders in the world to be racing something that has at least some spin-off to the sports bikes I'll buy. 500 2smokes did produce an amazing show, awe inspiring courage and skill required, and I guess they did give us some useful things, like tyres that behave a lot more forgivingly, suspension that works, and proddy bikes that handle a shit-load better than the GSX11s and CB11s that faffi and I duff on about... But current superbikes have given us (our children perhaps) litre class bikes that feel just like a 600 sporty, but with traction control and ABS that bloody well WORKS, and doesn't just shut you down the instant you get slightly adventurous. Now, ... if they can build a bike that looks like a 10R, has the seating room and daily utility of the ZX14, has low down and midrange like the ZX14, a clutch like the ZX14 - (which the current 10R most certainly does NOT have), and top-end like either the 10R or the 14, and traction control that works as well as the 10R (and I understand the latest 14 has exactly the same TC) then ... I'd buy it. ... if I had the money sitting around...

    I agree, 55 degrees is a bloody lot. Seems the number one bitch of people (at that point) doing production racing (or endurance racing) was that there was tyre grip to about 52 ~ 55 deg, but no proddy bike had any more than about 42 deg of clearance. (And that was the sporty ones, most had less.) The two things they really wanted from the first GSXR750 were massively reduced weight, and massively increased cornering clearance, both of which they got. And they got a pretty purposeful riding position, half decent sports/race fairing (a first), a stock steering damper, and a whole generation of wide eyed kids who had to buy a GSXR because they ROCK! ... I'd call it a win. The only thing that puzzles me about it, was the company built the brilliant GSXR11 next, and then went and f*ucked it up into a porky UJM from the '70s again. All that good work down the drain. Then Honda saved us all with the first Fireblade, which went "Hold on a minute, the '85 GSXR750 and the '86 GSXR11 were pretty good bikes. - Why are we going back to fat city?"

    The other significant bike at that point, was the RC30, but it had much less impact and effect than the GSXR, because while it was fast and good and won everything, it cost twice what a GSXR did and was only around in numbers large enough to supply the racers and the children of the rich. ... Look at cars from a few years earlier - you could buy a Torana and drop a Yella Terra on it, but only the kids from the North Shore could buy a GTHO to play with. The HO stayed in everyone's mind and dreams, but Toranas with extractors and triple side drafts, cams and foxtails were everywhere. They don't (and shouldn't ) have quite the same exalted place in history or mythology (boganology?) but they were the ones that actually changed things. That's what the '85 GSXR750 was - it was the bike that invented the modern sports bike, and did it in a package that boys from Redfern could buy.
     
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    #15 kneedragon, Aug 16, 2013
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2013
  6. GrahamB

    GrahamB Decaying member

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    Interesting to look at the results of the superstock class in endurance racing... ie the two 24h races in France, the 8h in Germany this weekend, the one in Doha etc.

    There are always 3 makes in contention: BMW, Suzuki and Kawasaki. The Kawasaki has full traction control & ABS. The BMW has that, plus electronic suspension on the HP2 (which they are allowed to bin, and Gimbert has suggested that is what they do, along with the abs). The Suzuki has none of the above and less hp than either of the other two. As often as not it wins.

    The Yamaha is too heavy and too slow in SSt form. There are usually also a couple of Panigales and an Aprilia... they have all the good gear, but they have a big party if they just get to the finish, and rarely run in the superstock class.

    So I'm not so convinced...

    I've also seen an article where a mag put one of their editors on a fully data-logged 600. He considered himself a "fast track day" sort of guy.
    First thing the data engineer spotted: he never opened the throttle fully on the straights, and he shut off and coasted long before getting on the brakes.

    In fact, on a typical sports bike with the standard throttle, you'd need to be double-jointed to get it wide open... I can't imagine anyone taking a second grab of the loud-handle on any current 1000, so I'd say the great majority have never been wide open... and certainly never held there until peak power.

    Put all of that together and I doubt that the average rider would go any faster on a current bike than on a 2001 GSXR750.
     
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  7. kneedragon

    kneedragon Re-Member ... ?

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    Yeah, holding the Lady Mac wide open until the fuel stopped would have been a bit easier if I had a double jointed wrist... Although, I'm not entirely sure I'd want an even faster acting throttle on something with so much go. ... Back to what I was just saying - I suppose if it had TC and I knew it worked, I'd possibly be interested in a quicker throttle action...

    "Put all of that together and I doubt that the average rider would go any faster on a current bike than on a 2001 GSXR750."

    I had a bit of a laugh in '97, '98. The bloke next door had built a parts bin special around a Z1000J, (GPZ11 barrels & head, carbs off something, Z1J frame, Z750Turbo wheels and brakes, GT750 electrics and instruments and wiring loom...and a real cheap and nasty CB11R Honda replica fairing.) It had been painted with red house paint, and an 8 inch brush. He got a job as a fitter, up in the mines, and a couple of days later his wife very slowly wheeled the beast out into the back yard, in the weather, and left it there. So, I felt obliged to ring him and tell him this, and after some back and forward, I got to borrow Clayton's Kawasaki. It was worth maybe $1,500... on a good day. The head gasket was good, but the base gasket was blown, and it didn't leak much oil if you rode it fairly gently, but hammer it and the oil came out like from a garden hose. It had a warped disk... In most ways, calling it a shitbox would be a bit generous. But it could do the job if asked, much quicker and better and with more aplomb than you ever expected. ... and then it wouldn't charge the damn battery and you'd have to push start it and shit... I had a number of stoplight grand prix with that thing, sometimes in a straight line but I liked corners better and the old beast didn't mind. I wouldn't say I won many, but I was not often humiliated. Bikes worth 10 or more times the money, got a second or two ahead and then failed to get away, and I had a ball. ... Until the next time I had to push start the bitch while people watched and laughed...

    Give me the 1980 GSX11 I moan about, modern wheels and tyres ... (you might need to widen the swingarm a bit...) and I don't know that I'd show anybody a clean set of heels, but I don't think many young blokes would get very far in front of me, either. No matter what they were riding. ... And I'd bloody well enjoy it, too. I did on the old J.
     
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    #17 kneedragon, Aug 16, 2013
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2013
  8. faffi

    faffi A.S.A.N.

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    Here, as per usual, I speak of stuff I know nothing about first hand. However, according to the instructors over at CSS, the student lap times dropped significantly when they bagan using the S1000RR as school bikes. Due to the electronics (plus, I suspect, a rather lame power delivery below 10 k rpm) their experience is that the bike is a lot easier to ride for most than just about any other bike. As I said, I cannot really comment, only observe.

    Note that students are generally slow, perhaps even slower than me, if that's possible.

    About using full throttle. I do not use it a lot on the Z650 because it goes slower when I do unless revs are way up. Not quite sure if the points ignition is too weak or if it is running too lean, but I ride around it by opening the throttle slowly. On every other machine, the throttle was pinned a lot, be that the CB1100 or Z1300 or VS1400 or GSX600 or whatever. I would pin it in every gear, but not when leaned over to throw sparks unless I it was in the upper gears - I do not enjoy falling off, even if I've done it too often, you see :lol: I have yet to ride a bike that didn't feel like it lacked power. Of course, there are times the power must be modulated, but once the bike is more or less upright there has been no need for any moderation. On the contrary, one would want more. And if the power is really soft, like on the Daybird, the throttle would be pinned to the stop in 1st and second gear cornes while still leaned over quite a bit while I would scream in my helmet for the thing to get going.

    Now, using full throttle and setting good lap times isn't the same thing. Getting into and out of the corners is far more important, and I am no master. When I read about sliding tyres and twisting frames that snap back violently enough to bounce wheels off the grount and such, it is very, very apparant I ride like a nanny. A nanny that can still use a little power straight ahead. Chances are, however, that this little nanny would shit her pants if placed on a Busa and asked to go WFO :oops:
     
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  9. kneedragon

    kneedragon Re-Member ... ?

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    Funny. I remember when S1000RRs had just come out, there was a race on tv, I think it was one of Terry's formula extreme meets, and they had a 'D' grader on one, and he was going pretty quick, but it seemed to be very inconsistent off corners. I guess it was a combination of traction control and lots of throttle, the variable being how well he set up his exit. Sometimes, it would fire off just like a bought one, but much of the time it would seem to hesitate and then come on like a light switch as the bike got almost upright. That had the knock on effect, at the other end of the straight, that he didn't quite know when or where to get on the brakes. Sometimes too early, sometimes too late, running deep and wide and losing a second or two. The impression I got watching, was not that he was a poor rider (although I could see how many would see it that way) but that the bike was a bit bloody hard to ride, and that he was in over his head, relying on the TC and luck, and being pretty damn brave. Some of his laps were quite bloody fast, but then he'd make some mistakes and the people behind him on slower bikes (there were quite a few) would catch up again. What I took home watching this, was that the bike had the potential to be bloody fast, but it wasn't all that easy to ride. Maybe on another (old school) bike he would have been off on his head in 3 corners, I don't know, but I didn't come away with the impression that anybody could get on a S1000RR and go really fast on it, which was the rumour of the time. Having an electronic nanny at corner exit, does save your bacon a bit, but it introduces other variables, like you never quite know how good a drive you're going to get, and perhaps, you don't quite get a sense of how good a drive you just got.
     
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  10. anttisexual

    anttisexual Pastafarian biker :)

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    I can assure you almost nobody can go fast on a s1000r. Almost nobody can go fast on anything because almost everybody is just slow. The fast group at track days runs about pi in about 1:50 apart from the odd reasonable racer. Just really really slow, in the context of how fast a stock 1985 gpz900 is :lol: Seriously, I find a lot of the discussion about bike performance and lap times quite funny. In the end there are no real fast bikes or slow bikes, just fast riders (very, very rare) and slow riders (99% of riders). If you 15 seconds off the pace, like most fast group punters at pi, then no amount of sport tyre, traction control, or ohlins shock that is going to help significantly. Not that there's anything bad about be slow, bikes are still fun :)
     
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