Riding in the Rain - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 7 Old 03-28-2005, 05:50 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Wheeling, WV
Posts: 37
Riding in the Rain

as a newbie with little real riding experience, i'm looking for thoughts on how the weestrom handles in rain or on wet pavement. the only time i've been in rain was with less than 50mi and i was terrified of dropping her the first week. now that i've gotten more comfortable with how she reacts generally after 700mi, i'm curious how fearful i should be of foul weather. i'd rather not push a little, push a little, push a little, learn the hard way. what's the concensus, 50% of dry performance, 30%, 75% ???? how would you describe how to ride safely in less than ideal conditions?
thanks. JOE

'04 Wee (blue)
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post #2 of 7 Old 03-28-2005, 05:55 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Carlsbad (Not NM)
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I recently did (roughly) 1000 miles in and out of some pretty heavy rain. For me. the key has always been to be as smooth as possible on all transitions (on/off the throttle, upright to leaned over, braking, acceleration).

btw. . . . The Bridgestone 020's that I have on my 6Fiddy are probably the best rain tire I have ever ridden on.

:hand: [I]Experience is a hard teacher because the test is first, the lesson afterward. [/I]
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post #3 of 7 Old 03-28-2005, 09:07 PM
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don't ride in the rain with the stock tombstone tires on unless you are into sliding a lot.they are horrible in the rain.you can do some insanely long burnouts exiting turns with them though if you're so inclined,just don't let the back tire pass the front one.that is really neat freestyle trick called the lipskid,you can only do that trick once though.
post #4 of 7 Old 03-28-2005, 10:10 PM
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: 44 05' N 71 09' W
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Be Smooth. I agree that's the answer. Racing and teaching legend Reg Pridmore offers smoothness as the ultimate riding mantra. Read the book, Smooth Riding the Pridmore Way. It will make most anyone a better rider in the wet or dry.

Back to the rain...smoothness is essential. Don't do anything abruptly and you'll be OK in most instances. Get choppy or sloppy and you could start sliding around.

It's OK to ride in the rain. Just be sure you have good waterproof riding gear so you stay comfortable and focused. Don't ride during the first few minutes of a rainstorm, especially if it's not rained for a while. All the oil in the road comes to the surface and takes a couple of minutes to disperse.
Ride a bit slower, leave a larger space cushion around you, and be smooth.

Now get out in the rain and ride.

Ride well.

'06 DL-1000
'06 KLX 250S (more fun than people should be allowed to have)
'72 SL-350 K2 (bump start only)
'72 CL-350 (on injured reserve list at this time)

I guess it's better to bend a valve in Missoula than to lose your mind in Bozeman.

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post #5 of 7 Old 03-29-2005, 01:07 AM
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Originally Posted by MWValley
Ride a bit slower, leave a larger space cushion around you, and be smooth.
Yep, that's the key. Dunno why they warn off newbs about riding in the rain. As long as you take it easy, it's no big deal. I started riding about a year ago and was pretty initimidated from others' warnings about riding in the rain. Pshaaa, I say! No biggie... don't even think about it in terms of percentage performance. Just get out and try it. The bike won't let you down... now your helmet visor is another matter entirely. :lol:
post #6 of 7 Old 03-29-2005, 11:14 AM
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Central KY
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The rule of thumb with modern tires is about 80% available traction from a clean, wet surface. I rode home in the rain yesterday and had no problems with the DL, stock tires and all.

Watch busy intersections because the oil never gets washed away. Stay in one of the car tire tracks and put your feet down carefully. Also watch out on other surfaces, like painted arrows, cobblestones, steel plates, etc. They can all be much more slippery when wet.

Keep your body dry with a good rain suit, boots, and gloves. Being cold is very distracting and tiring.

If you're still uncomfortable, don't ride in the rain. Get more practice on dry pavement and wait for a warm, rainy weekend day to take it easy and get used to the water.

06 DL-650 - SilverBlue
05 DL-650 - red (RIP - watch your mirrors!)
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post #7 of 7 Old 03-29-2005, 01:17 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Wheeling, WV
Posts: 37
i appreciate the insights so far, good stuff for someone without much experience. i know about the oil rising and to keep the distance, etc., i just have never had experience with wet windy roads and have no way of knowing how far to lean without kicking out from underneath. you're making it sound like, with good rubber, its not too much a risk. i'm not a nut rider anyway (41, 3 kids, mortgage, dog, responsibility, the whole nine yards..). just a weekend toy in the WV mountains. JOE

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