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Discussion Starter #1
Can anyone explain to me why people seem so averse to the ABS on these bikes? I'm looking at getting a new-to-me Wee, for daily commuting and long-distance road trips (long distance to me meaning 20,000+ miles).

I won't be doing any single-tracking with it obviously, but I want do do the Trans-Lab highway as well as the Dempster Highway to Inuvick. Probably will also do the TAT or something similar.

So, why wouldn't I want ABS?
 

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Can anyone explain to me why people seem so averse to the ABS on these bikes? I'm looking at getting a new-to-me Wee, for daily commuting and long-distance road trips (long distance to me meaning 20,000+ miles).

I won't be doing any single-tracking with it obviously, but I want do do the Trans-Lab highway as well as the Dempster Highway to Inuvick. Probably will also do the TAT or something similar.

So, why wouldn't I want ABS?
My previous DL was a K6 without ABS, the new one an L2 with ABS. That said, the ABS on the L2 is better (cycles faster) than the ABS on older DL's.

The ABS has saved me a couple of times already, once on a wet clay road when a cow got scared up and jumped into my lane.

The other in town when a car pulled out through a line of traffic into my lane I had both wheels locked up most of the time and still managed to squeak past it with mm to spare.

Both cases I'm pretty sure I'd have dumped the bike without ABS.

So , I can't see any reason not to like it either.

The downside with the older ABS's is that the slow cycling may cause really poor grip in some circumstances - simple answer there is:

If the ABS comes on, ease up on the brakes and try again.

Pete
 

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My previous DL was a K6 without ABS, the new one an L2 with ABS. That said, the ABS on the L2 is better (cycles faster) than the ABS on older DL's.

The ABS has saved me a couple of times already, once on a wet clay road when a cow got scared up and jumped into my lane.

The other in town when a car pulled out through a line of traffic into my lane I had both wheels locked up most of the time and still managed to squeak past it with mm to spare.

Both cases I'm pretty sure I'd have dumped the bike without ABS.

So , I can't see any reason not to like it either.

The downside with the older ABS's is that the slow cycling may cause really poor grip in some circumstances - simple answer there is:

If the ABS comes on, ease up on the brakes and try again.

Pete
I not saying I don't believe you Pete (and I am pro ABS), but I find the ABS system on my 2011 Wee pretty much transparent... No pulsing that I can feel... I have not compared it to the new Wee, however...
 

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I had ABS on my GS and liked the way it performed 99.9% of the time. The other 0.01% was not a big deal.

What I didn't like is the cost, complexity, and the special considerations for maintenance.

If a bike I like came with ABS I would buy it, but if it had a non-ABS option I would try to seek that out.

ABS is almost like a oil thread. It seems to get pretty personal.
 

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I've never had an ABS bike, and I suppose I have my reservations, but those who have it give them positive reviews. I slam my '05 Wee around as a daily commuter but haven't locked up a wheel yet.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Yeah I could understand how ABS wouldn't be very nice if I was doing heavy off-roading throught a lot of slush or sand or mud or such, but I feel like for daily commuting and graded gravel road touring it would be a lifesaver. When I had my '04 Wee I locked the brakes a couple times and would not like to repeat the experience, even thought I kept it up both times (I once locked the front under hard braking at the racetrack. I'm still not sure how I managed to save that one).

I'm also told that on the 07-11 bikes, it's easy enough to install a toggle switch to turn the ABS off?
 

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ABS is a good thing very much most of the time.

When I am in difficulty I want to steer a safe path not to impact.

I know it extends braking distance but lets you steer thats the trade off
 

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Just picked up a DL650ABS. This is the first of the 10 bikes I've owned/ridden to have ABS. I'm just finishing the break-in on the DL, so the jury is still out on how I feel about the ABS. I do notice that the brakes on this bike are generally mushy compared to other bikes I've had, but that may be a setup or pad issue.
 

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I'm not an expert on how ABS works, but from what I've read and personal experience, it's not what most people think.

The current generations of ABS (yes they are improving all the time), use not only the ABS sensor but also what's programmed into the computer. It senses things like one wheel turning faster than the other, how quickly the wheel(s) have gone from turning to barely turning, etc etc.

So the "threshold" the ABS sensor uses to determine if it needs to kick in is built into the computer, and it uses many factors.

Most people think, if it skids it kicks in. How could there be anything wrong with that? But no, it will kick in if it thinks "it's about to skid", or "maybe it is skidding".

And this is where some complain that it's kicking in and causing stopping distances to be lengthened.

I ride my own bike in the demo's for the MSF advanced riding classes. Only 1 of the bikes I've owned had ABS. I would cause the ABS to kick in every time I did emergency braking with that bike.

In dirt? you absolutely want to switch if off, look at that BMW vid posted just above, it's obvious why.
 

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I had one occasion to blame ABS for my own ignorance.

Otherwise, I'd opt for it.
 

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A graphic illustration, you decide which is best for you.



:biggrinjester:
 

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Pretty sure you don't want to lock up BOTH wheels, ever.

The videos of that rider show an act of some skill: keeping the bike perfectly vertical and traveling in a straight line while fully locking the rear isn't a skill most folks practice.

Lock up the front wheel (I have at low speed on gravel) and it gets scary pretty quickly. I don't have ABS on my Wee, but I wish I did, really.
 

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some people want a bike that thinks for them

Some of us prefer to rely on a skill set.

I have always considered ABS as something used by lesser riders to overcome their errors....

which is why it only comes on the 650..... :green_lol:

flame away She-Strom Riders :biggrinjester:
 

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I tried to resist because I thought someone else...

would jump in here that would be better qualified than me to explain this question. I asked the same question when I bought my 2011 and made an appointment with a group to ride off road.

ABS has saved my ass already, on more than one occassion. One example: My wife and I were riding, both ABS bikes, when a car cut us off while changing lanes only a few feet from a stop light. We both grabbed the brakes and both ABS systems kicked in to allow a controlled stop. Whew! We cheered ABS!

A few weeks later, while riding in gravel and mud, I had forgot to turn my ABS off and experienced the opposite effect. However, you have to understand how ABS works in order to appreciate what I'm about to explain, as it was explained to me.

ABS "senses" wheel slipage and temporarily turns your brakes off for a tiny amount of time, while it is checking for non-wheel slipage. All this happens very very very fast. The net result, when on asphalt, is that your brakes will release and reset/re-apply/grab the asphalt very fast to allow for more controlled braking. Yes, it may add to your stopping distance, but you will be able to stop instead of skidding and falling.

However, on mud/dirt/gravel or other loose crap, the detection of loose stuff tells the brakes that there is no traction, effectively turning your brakes off for a longer and longer period, rendering your brakes as worthless. Imagine rolling down a loose muddy hill, sliding while trying to gain control by applying the correct braking action, and the ABS says, "Nope, no brakes here, bad surface. Just let 'er roll until we sense something more stable."

I love my ABS, when I'm on the asphalt/hardtop, but I pull the fuse when I know I'm going into places where I need my brakes to work-regardless.

A much more experienced dirt rider pointed out that it is technically advisable to use your brakes to skid while off road, to build up a small mound of dirt/gravel/debris in front of your tires to create an obstacle that may assist with impeding your forward motion. Kinda' like creating a wheel chock to help you stop.

It took me a time or two to understand all this ABS magic, but I learned real quick to pull my ABS fuse after feeling the lack of braking while off road.

Hope this helps you as much as it helped me. The picture of the dog being dragged across the beach is very correct, from an abstract perspective, but doesn't consider the changes in the surface across which you may be riding.
 
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