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Premium Member
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Discussion Starter #1
I went down at Road Altanta this last Saturday, 6th time I've hit the pavement, 3rd time the zx10 has been down, but first time at the track.

I'm fine except for a little bruising, bike doesn't look too bad either.

There is a lot to talk about and I don't have much time right now, so I'll just give you guys the quick and dirty about the crash and save the full report for later when I get all the videos edited and uploaded.

I think it was the second session after lunch, I was just starting to get in the groove. The morning had been a crash fest and red flags kept us from getting in a good session.

I was going into turn 10a, a tight left hander at the end of the long back straight where you brake hard from top speed to maybe 50 mph or so.

I wasn't going into the turn too hot or anything, so I wasn't really panicked, but I noticed that the bike wasn't slowing down as much as usual as I pulled in the brake lever. So I kept pulling all the way until the lever was touching my two other fingers on the grip (I two finger brake). Something was obviously wrong. I remember thinking fairly calmly, "I need to pit and see what the problem is". At that point I still thought I was going to make the turn. About a second later, I started getting that "oh shit feeling" as the turn in point was approaching and I was still going too fast.

I've always had the thinking that when you are going into a turn too fast, it's best to just hang in there and try and make the turn instead of standing it up and running off course, which pretty much guarantees the crash. So I held the brake in and started to turn in. I tried to just trail brake into the turn like always, but this time the speed was too much for the front tire to handle and the bike went down abruptly on the left side, sliding fairly gently into the gravel with me following it face down on the asphalt.

After talking to a few guys about it, our theory is that some shitty brake fluid was the culprit. I upgraded my brakes to stainless lines while back, but I used some regular auto parts store fluid when I should have used some high end motorcycle specific stuff. Apparrently the boiling point is much lower with the cheap stuff, and after a bunch of hard braking, air bubbles must have formed in the lines causing me to loose brake pressure. A pretty stupid mistake on my part, and I feel pretty embarrassed that I didn't know the difference between the two considering how much time I spend reading about motorcycle stuff, but oh well. Could have been worse, and now I know.

I had my tank cam rolling at the time, but the crash must have corrupted the file or something because I can't get it to play back. The track photographer was right there, so I think he may have gotten some shots of it, but haven't seen tthose pics yet. But here are a few my buddy who was watching took.

This is a previous lap, showing how things are suppose to happen. I'm the guy on the black bike.





And here is how you don't take turn 10 at RA.


It looked like a comfortable place to take a little nap. :p


Walking away from yet another crash on the 10 :( But at least I'm walking...






The crash truck.



From what I can tell, the damage doesn't look to bad. I won't really know until I strip everything off... again. But so far it looks like I just need new rearsets, shift linkage, steering damper mount ( I think the damper itself is ok), and some fiberglass/resin to fix the cracked fairings. The bike didnt tumble, so I think the forks/frame etc are ok.

Check back later for the rest of the report along with videos and more pics. And if anyone knows of a way to retrieve a bad file from a digital camera, let me know. I would love to see the video of the actual crash.
 

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The Indifference Engine
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If that ever happens again pump the brakes like crazy! Good chance you'll get enough pressure into the lines to slow down.

Glad to hear you're okay.
 
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That sucks...

also never seen a 10r with just 1 pipe. Looks much better then the normal 2.

Are you racing against r1's there, or can anyone bring a bike down and race?
 
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Kawi for Life!
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Man glad you're okay. Must say, sounds like fun though. except for all the money to get the bike track ready again. that's a bummer.
 

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ratherberiding
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Glad you're alright bro...good thing it didn't happen at the Gap
 

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Sportbike Scum; Ex-Mod.
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What are we gonna do with ya, Joe??? You're not good for my blood pressure...

Glad you're ok & hope the damage is minimal. Let us know...
 

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DEATH TO THE ISA!!!
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If the bike was still orange it wouldn't have crashed =)

Seriously man....sorry to hear it. But at least you walked away from it!
 

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Kawi for Life!
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it'll be interesting to see what the pro guy's shoots look like. he's right there. Hope he got some for you man.
 

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Sorry to hear you went down again Flo but glad you're ok. I upgraded my brake lines to SS and what I finally figured out is that it's not the brake fluid I'm using(DOT 5) but the little dial on the brake lever is loose. The reason I say this is because I sometimes have massive braking power and 10 seconds later the brakes feel spongy. After rebleeding my brakes I still got the same thing and that's when I noticed that the dial was loose and moving.
 

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Steve Mcqueen Wannabe!
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Sucks to hear Flo, but as hard and fast as you are riding its inevitable IMO. Hope you get it figured out...
 

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Labia Grappler
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Glad you made it out pretty much unscathed! Pretty cool that someone got pics of it as it happened. I'm curious to see the other photographers pictures as well.
 

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Sportbike Scum; Ex-Mod.
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Oh, and by the way; I feel sorry for your bikes...:(
 

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Premium Member
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Discussion Starter #16
If that ever happens again pump the brakes like crazy! Good chance you'll get enough pressure into the lines to slow down.

Glad to hear you're okay.
good idea, wish i would have thought of it, but I'm not sure it could have saved me anyway

That sucks...

also never seen a 10r with just 1 pipe. Looks much better then the normal 2.

Are you racing against r1's there, or can anyone bring a bike down and race?
its just a track day, anyone can sign up and bring any bike they want as long as it's track worthy

What are we gonna do with ya, Joe??? You're not good for my blood pressure...

Glad you're ok & hope the damage is minimal. Let us know...
lol, you're not the only one

Sorry to hear you went down again Flo but glad you're ok. I upgraded my brake lines to SS and what I finally figured out is that it's not the brake fluid I'm using(DOT 5) but the little dial on the brake lever is loose. The reason I say this is because I sometimes have massive braking power and 10 seconds later the brakes feel spongy. After rebleeding my brakes I still got the same thing and that's when I noticed that the dial was loose and moving.
I don't think it was the dial in this case, but that is a good point and an important thing to check

Oh, and by the way; I feel sorry for your bikes...:(
they may get abused a bit, but at least I try to use them for what they made for. I feel sorry for bikes that only see the inside of a garage or a starbucks parking lot

Looks fine to me, track bikes are supposed to be all rashed up. Just throw a rear set on there and you're good to go :). Glad you didn't sustain any injuries though.
that's the way i see it too. I don't think a track bike should be nice and shiny, that just means you aren't riding hard enough. only way to get faster is to test your limits which means fucking up every now and then.
 

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Glad you walked away, but I question your belief that it's better to ride out the turn rather than stand it up and try to slow it down as much as possible. I'm not trying to pretend I know more than a track rider, because I have never been on a track or raced my bikes, but when things fuck up on the road it gets away from you real fast and your options are limited. I crashed a month ago on gravel in a turn and when I knew I was in the deep shit I stood it up and grabbed the front brake for all it was worth. When the front started diving under me I switched to the rear and lowsided. Had I not stood it up I would have lowsided into the curb at a high rate of speed. Had I stayed on the front brake I would have highsided on my face as you seemed to have done. In a case like that being leaned over in a curve aren't you almost guaranteed to crash badly unless you stand it up and attempt to scrub off as much speed as possible before the inevitable happens?
 

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that's the way i see it too. I don't think a track bike should be nice and shiny, that just means you aren't riding hard enough. only way to get faster is to test your limits which means fucking up every now and then.
According to my bike then, I must be REALLY fast, haha. j/k
 

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The Indifference Engine
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Truefaith - ask anyone that races and what you'll hear is that on the track you scrub as much speed as you can look around the corner and fucking throw it in. Once you hit that grass or gravel you're probably going down anyways, so you might as well try to make the corner.

Flojoe - I just remembered a while back I was talking with one of the guys who races a ZX10R for us ('05) and he had mentioned that they had a problem with the front calipers seizing up - result being the disc would superheat and then boil the brake fluid.

Check both of your discs to see if one has blued or worn funny. Check the function of the pistons to see if they're working correctly... it might be that you ran into that problem and now have an EXCELLENT excuse to upgrade to brembo calipers (tech-hint look around for a crashed 2008 Triumph Speedtriple - they have brembo's up front now that should fit :D!)
 
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