Did too much at once - Ex-500.com - The home of the Kawasaki EX500 / Ninja 500R
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-16-2018, 7:51 PM Thread Starter
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Did too much at once

So I installed a Penske shock in the rear, race tech emulators up front, woodcraft clip-ons, oh ya and I don’t want to forget the reverse shift.
Do I need to say that my first trip back to the track was less than stellar.
I had an idea going in it would be different but I was surprised just how much.
Things I liked:
Ride height- there is a crazy amount of lean angle available.
Turn in - Stupid quick, really wants to turn.
Stability- Very precise thru the turn, goes where you point it. No more pumping from the rear on exit.
Potential- There is a lot of speed available. (Now I have to figure how to use it).

Things I didn’t like:
Turn in- Was a little scary the first few laps (probably best not to start with the ride height at max)
Overwhelmed- Couldn’t efficiently evaluate the front and rear while trying to keep track of the shift pattern. Ended up in 4th instead of 2nd a few times. That was a little distracting.
I packed up and headed home with bike and body intact. If I had to do it over I would do the shock first and get that dialed in, then do the forks followed up by the reverse shift. It’s still going to take a few trips to get it sorted, but had I been patient with the installation of parts it would’ve been a smoother transition.
Just a little FYI...
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-16-2018, 10:13 PM
fog
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Tip, donít touch the Penske. You have done the right stuff, now learn to ride it. You are doing fine. When you improve your skills you will see improvement.
I can tell you as a expert that was riding close to the best times at our track .that even a change of tire pressure takes some time to learn.
Ride, ride,ride.

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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-26-2018, 8:30 PM
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What kind of tyres where you running? I hated GP shift! Sorry, I know, I know, after 200,000 + street miles, I just could not change my brain to do it, I have a YSR50 that I used to use as a training tool at the local go cart track and used the reverse pattern on that bike, nothing but missed shifting and frustration! I changed it back and all my race bikes were standard pattern, never affected me at all and I was fast trust me and got some fire wood too (no-bragging.)



Do as dah Fog man says, ride ride ride. Peace. Oh, when I got the Trauma-Hawk ride that kind of ended my racing career. No regrets ever.
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-27-2018, 11:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ridervfr View Post
I hated GP shift! Sorry, I know, I know, after 200,000 + street miles, I just could not change my brain to do it, I have a YSR50 that I used to use as a training tool at the local go cart track and used the reverse pattern on that bike, nothing but missed shifting and frustration!


I changed it back and all my race bikes were standard pattern, never affected me at all and I was fast trust me and got some fire wood too (no-bragging.)

Kevin Schwantz used a standard street shift pattern on his race bikes.....he was a world champ on a 500cc GP bike. I'd say it didn't affect him at all either........sean


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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-28-2018, 9:29 AM
fog
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The reason to use a correct shift pattern is. When accelerating out of a turn at full lean you probably cannot get you boot under the shift lever to up shift. therefore with you boot on the top of the lever you can fully exploit the max lean angle through at least two gears.
Or if you can use a standard shift pattern ,you not going as fast as you could.

That said, I back shifted once at the top of the hill at Loudon once at max revs (because I forgot the reversed pattern) and prolly spun the engine to 14,000 . I never made it back to pit lane before the bearings failed. But I still kept the GP pattern.

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Last edited by fog; 12-28-2018 at 9:33 AM.
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 1-2-2019, 11:09 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the input fellas!
I’m going to stick it out and “prove” what I can and can’t do by doing real world testing. Sometimes I forget basics, like writing things down or reviewing earlier notes. What I “think” and “feel” aren’t always correct. But if I take notes before and after (something I didn’t do last time) then go back over those notes I seem to find an answer or correct a mistake.
Shift patterns aside it is a mistake for someone at my skill level (below Kevin Schwantz or most club racers for that matter) to make wholesale changes and expect that the bike will ride about the same. I changed my bike ALOT and after tinkering and riding my relationship with this bike is improving.
Thanks again and happy new year
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 4-4-2019, 11:01 PM Thread Starter
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Just a little update (not that anybody but me cares)
After much tinkering and several laps at the local track I think me and the EX are ready for this year’s race season. I haven’t pushed it, in fact I’ve been riding fairly relaxed and I’m only 3 to 4 seconds off my best times from late last year. (And my knee still hasn’t hit the ground)
GP shift is more comfortable but not yet as natural as standard. I recognize it’s usefulness to my riding style. Last year I missed up shifts this year it’s downshifts. I think a1/4” longer shift rod will solve that. But the confusion of which way to shift is way down from the first couple of outings.
The suspension is working really well. I am really impressed with Race Tech and Penske parts. Feedback is great and the bike is very predictable. The only adjustment I made was switching to 15w fork oil as the rebound was slow in the cooler temperatures. I’ll switch to the 20w when it get a little warmer out.
I scrapped the dash and installed a Aim solo 2 dl. I kept the oil light, neutral light and a digital temp gauge. It looks a little primitive but the solo 2 is more useful than a gauge cluster. (Race Studio is a whole other mess to learn)
I’ve taken a lot of notes about my adjustments and their effects on me and the bike. At least I know if something works and if not I can undo it.
They combined 500 with 400 so I’ll have to compete with the factory sponsored riders. I can close on them on the straights but their lap times were 8sec a lap faster.
The bike can go 8 seconds quicker, the real question is can I.
It all starts Saturday.
Ready, set, GO!!!
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 4-5-2019, 8:42 AM
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Don't doubt that we care. Development of the bike is what the forum is all about and your experiences will undoubtedly help others. Keep posting!
Stay smooth and relaxed and the knee will get there.

John Z.

If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough. -Albert Einstein
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 4-5-2019, 8:44 AM
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John Z.

If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough. -Albert Einstein
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 4-5-2019, 9:29 AM
fog
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Some thoughts on racing

When you hear people talk about automatic riding or muscle memory that allows a person to go fast, Don't believe a word of it.
Conscious thought about every turn of every lap is what it takes. I you think once you learn a corner your done, you will be. You must be aware of what each component of your bike is doing at all times and you are the most important component.
Your several hundred lb. movable mass is the single most adjustable part, and must be coordinated with every physical change of the machine.
Learn to ride it is a simple way to state the problem.
in reality you need to adjust you body position to get the best of any change. the faster you are the more refined this adjustment is.
Every turn of every lap must be treated with conscious effort to get the best speed out of it, don't be afraid to make small changes, even ones that result in slower times can be educational.
Ride ,ride ,ride, for sure ,but pay attention.

FOG fast old guy and I didn't get that name buy accident

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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old 4-5-2019, 1:57 PM
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What do you think you are, some soth of race team coach? Oh wait.....

I do disagree with you on the muscle memory part, I fly rc choppers, the big fast one's with all of the smoke. Training your brain to the responce time of your body is an important part of the eqation, If I tried today to do the things I could do four years ago (stopped flyig after kid #2) me and or the chopper are going down.


And we are paying atention .


Quote:
Originally Posted by fog View Post
When you hear people talk about automatic riding or muscle memory that allows a person to go fast, Don't believe a word of it.
Conscious thought about every turn of every lap is what it takes. I you think once you learn a corner your done, you will be. You must be aware of what each component of your bike is doing at all times and you are the most important component.
Your several hundred lb. movable mass is the single most adjustable part, and must be coordinated with every physical change of the machine.
Learn to ride it is a simple way to state the problem.
in reality you need to adjust you body position to get the best of any change. the faster you are the more refined this adjustment is.
Every turn of every lap must be treated with conscious effort to get the best speed out of it, don't be afraid to make small changes, even ones that result in slower times can be educational.
Ride ,ride ,ride, for sure ,but pay attention.

FOG fast old guy and I didn't get that name buy accident

1993 Teal/White EX500 6K First Street Bike
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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old 4-5-2019, 2:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevinl7778 View Post
What do you think you are, some soth of race team coach? Oh wait.....

I do disagree with you on the muscle memory part, I fly rc choppers, the big fast one's with all of the smoke. Training your brain to the responce time of your body is an important part of the eqation, If I tried today to do the things I could do four years ago (stopped flyig after kid #2) me and or the chopper are going down.


And we are paying atention .
Fine on the chopper thing ,but your assainít on the line. If you ride by rote you will never improve.

Fog

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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old 4-5-2019, 4:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fog View Post
If you ride by rote you will never improve.

Fog
True for every aspect of racing. Going to the next race and doing exactly what you did at the last is a recipe for getting beat. Front runners never stop experimenting.
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