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Discussion Starter #1
new to the trike world so nothing to compare it to - 2003 GL1800 CSC Cobra conversion with 6 degree rake kit - how difficult should it be to turn the handlebars in curves - this one seems to be extremely hard and in the twisties will wear me out pretty quick - contacted CSC and they said the 6 degree rake is like adding power steering - not sure about that staement
 

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I have the 5.5 degree on my Roadsmith and after a few days of riding it just kinda felt right to me...

Before I raked it out, it felt like I was riding a tank....

Ronnie
 

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new to the trike world so nothing to compare it to - 2003 GL1800 CSC Cobra conversion with 6 degree rake kit - how difficult should it be to turn the handlebars in curves - this one seems to be extremely hard and in the twisties will wear me out pretty quick - contacted CSC and they said the 6 degree rake is like adding power steering - not sure about that staement
Several years ago I had a friend new to the trike experience and he ask for some pointers. I put the following together and it really helped him. I've since shared it with several trike owners and they seem to benefit so hopefully it will also help you. Keep in mind this is "MY WAY" Others have their little tricks. If this works you will be able to handle that CSC easily. I recently gave this to a 105 pound lady rider who had just bought a new Harley Tri-Glide. She'd never ridden a trike before and someone had fed her a line of BS about how to ride a trike. That HD was wearing her out even on short rides.

Hope you get comfortable quickly. It makes trike riding soooooooooo much more fun!!

Trike Riding Basics

I believe that four wheeler ATV experience gives one a big jump on mastering the trike. For the most part the steering uses the same principles. Hanging a cheek on you trike will do nothing except put you in a position where you don't have good control of the handlebars.

I have approached all my riding techniques from the viewpoint of positioning myself for maximum control of the trike. I use the term keeping my body "mid ship". For that I actually depend more on my legs then my arms. If you are turning left, centrifugal force pushes you to the right. To counter this I push down on my right foot (using floorboard or highway pegs) and in tight turns or twisties I actually hug the left side of the bike with my left foot/leg. Obviously the exact opposite applies for right turns. This keeps my body square behind the handlebars so I can steer properly. It also takes a lot of strain off the arms so I don't get worn out as quickly.

Unless the on/off ramp for an Interstate has an unusually exaggerated angle you shouldn't have a problem once you get use to the trike steering. I heard of a novice rider that exited too fast for their ability and didn't negotiate a sharp exit ramp. Flipped the trike!! Personal experience here -- I came down a hill with a sharp curve at the bottom too fast on one of my first rides. I didn't wreck or even go off the road but I tell you I was scared!! That is when I started developing my foot/leg technique.

Interstate lane changing will be a walk in the park. In your vehicles you don't make quick moves when changing lanes. Same with a trike. Just signal, move over and accelerate.

Panic stops take some practice. I'm sure you have done it on the two wheeler. Even though you will have linked brakes remember the 70/30 rule on GL1800 brakes. If you use just the rear brakes only 30 percent of your breaking power will go to the front. Over the years I have found I can stop VERY QUICK by hitting the rear brake followed very soon by lots of front brake. Had to employ said technique yesterday when a lady stopped in front of me for no reason (not even a critter in the road). I stopped well short of impact but my blood pressure elevated considerably.

Twisties are the BIG CHALLENGE. A lot of your ability will be gained from experience. I think we each develop our individual version of tried and true curve carving principles. Some people hold fast on the "cutting the corner off the curve" thing. Coming in wide and cutting off the apex then exiting wide. Theoretically making two smaller curves out of a big one. Other people cut the inside off by staying to the left then chopping off the inside and exiting on the left.

Way more then a few times I have met vehicles coming around a curve very close to or over the centerline so I actually use both afore mentioned methods. On left turns I move to the right side of my lane, cut the apex, and exit on the right side. On right turns I stay left in my lane cut off the inside and exit left. This lets me use minimal steering force and I get to see if a vehicle or other danger (dead critter, gravel, rocks) is in the road. Same methods are used in twisties or high speed sweepers. Of course, adjusting speed is always a big part of that equation.

I hope all that makes sense Steve. From our conversations I have a feeling you will do just fine. The key is to practice. There is a big parking lot with all sorts of islands and other obstructions only a couple blocks from my home. I spent several hours there the first couple weeks. Gradually I increased the speed I negotiated obstacles at until I felt comfortable and did not have to concentrate so much. Now I don't have to think about what to do - just do it.....
 

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What I found that helps is push with one arm and push with the other. Won’t take long to become automatic in steering. MyRS has the 6* rake and very easy to steer.
 

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I bought my trike 900 miles from home and rode it home. Call it 900 miles of training. I have learned that push on both grips makes things smoother. My take is 5.5 I believe but I have never tried a not raked trike to compare.

Sent from my SM-N960U using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter #8
its not the riding i am having trouble with, its the amount of effort it takes to turn the handle bars - seems like it is way too hard considering CSC said its should be like power steering with the rake kit installed - any suggestions on what to look for that is making it this way???
 

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how about you visit another trike dealer and test ride another trike (preferably the same make) to compare... I have 4 degree rake on mine and it does take some effort in the twisties...
 

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Try jacking the front end off the ground and test your steering head bearings. trikes do challenge the bearings more. Do you have fork extender’s? If not, you may be sitting too low in the front. My brother triked his, then afterwards put in the 6 degree rake, then the extenders, then progressive springs. That was a hard way to learn, but he says it makes a world of difference now. 15w fork oil too.
 

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its not the riding i am having trouble with, its the amount of effort it takes to turn the handle bars - seems like it is way too hard considering CSC said its should be like power steering with the rake kit installed - any suggestions on what to look for that is making it this way???
What GLBlinded suggested is a pretty good idea. Just maybe the installer got the steering head bearing too tight. I've installed several rake kits and usually torque the 6 degree bearings just a bit more than a two wheel GL1800 gets but not enough to make steering hard.

That term "Power Steering" is sort of relative. Without the rake kit steering is a real chore. Twisties with the rake kit in is still some effort but at least it's doable. I would not recommend serious twisties on a trike without the modification!
 

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Also what tire pressure are you running. If it's too low, that will also require extra effort as well...
 

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i think that you have a standard tree , the sales person didn't know what the bike had ,

and was trying to get as much money from you as possible .

Just my opinion .
 

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i think that you have a standard tree , the sales person didn't know what the bike had ,

and was trying to get as much money from you as possible .

Just my opinion .
Easy enough to see if there is a rake kit installed. Original trees are black. Every rake kit I've seen is CNC cut billet aluminum so all he has to do is look up under the bottom or look at the top triple tree section.

It's rare with CSC trikes but I guess there are some out there without a rake kit.. :laugh::laugh:
 

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That term "Power Steering" is sort of relative. Without the rake kit steering is a real chore.

This is the key--it's like power steering compared to not having a rake kit. Not like having power steering in a car. Even my 6 degree rake takes substantially more effort to turn than driving a car or truck with power steering.
 

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Back to the front tire. I run 41-42 psi. And is it an OEM tire? The Pilot active and B45 do make it steer easier. Like they said lift the front end check to see if moves hard then. I had an 03 with a M/T Adventure with a 4.5 rake. And now 2013 with a RS with a 5.5 rake. It was hard in the beginning. But got easier after I learned to do the push - pull and pushing with the feet. After shoulder replacement, Doctor said riding the trike was good therapy. Twisties were easy to do, but holding in the wind would hurt after awhile.
 

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Another way to check if you have a rake kit is to measure from the back of the front fender to the timing chain cover. My CSC with 6 degree rake is very close to 5 inches.
 

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new to the trike world so nothing to compare it to - 2003 GL1800 CSC Cobra conversion with 6 degree rake kit - how difficult should it be to turn the handlebars in curves - this one seems to be extremely hard and in the twisties will wear me out pretty quick - contacted CSC and they said the 6 degree rake is like adding power steering - not sure about that staement
Maybe you don't have a rake kit on there, they will tell you anything to sale the trike if your front tire has les then 3 inches from tire to crawling it's a factory motorcycle not a trike kit.
 

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the trike is an easy system to master,,,, its really a push and pull system since there is no leading or swining the handlebars. start by finding yourself a parking lot big one, start with figure 8's to the right and after about 15min, do it the the left, then after that back an forth on 8's,,,,then your ready to drive the street........later
 

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its not the riding i am having trouble with, its the amount of effort it takes to turn the handle bars - seems like it is way too hard considering CSC said its should be like power steering with the rake kit installed - any suggestions on what to look for that is making it this way???
I have a 2019 CSC Encore and I would have to agree the CSC's "like power steering statement"; just remember "Power is Your Friend"! Powering through the twisties and around 90* turns not only requires a lot less effort, but is also hell of a lot more FUN!

As others have said: practice will improve your technique.

Jim
 
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