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Discussion Starter #1
First off, a definition;

Trail-Braking, as I am describing it, is the trailing off of the front brake while in a turn, until the throttle can be applied to power out of the turn. There are other definitions, but this is what I am discussing. With the GL1800, we are adding some rear brake as we use the front, due to the linked braking system. Because of the wight distrubution and long wheelbase of the Wing, this is ok.

At Lee Parks Total Control Advanced Rider Clinic Level 2, we learned to trail-brake. Lee is of the opinion that it might just be the most valuable skill he teaches, because it gives the rider a tool to deal with suprises in mid-turn.

If you are not carrying any brake while in a corner, and you need to apply brake, you lose precious ground getting onto the brakes, and as the suspension compresses, the bike is going to try to stand up.

If you are carrying even the slightest pressure on the brakes in a corner, and you need to apply the brake, you can add brake instantly, and your line will dramatically tighten, unless you stand the bike up. I emphasize the rider, because the bike will not naturally stand up, so you can easily control the amount of lean. This gives you the ability to place the bike exactly where you want it.

I found trail-braking to be fairly easy to learn. What was more difficult was adding brake, because the bike would dive for the inside line. It took several tries for me to place the bike where I wanted it, but once I was able to react quickly enough, I was able to put the bike where I wanted it rapidly and effortlessly.

This is certainly not a technique to try on the street, until you have mastered it in a safe environment, such as a parking lot. If I had tried this on the street, the first time I added brake would have had me running out of my lane, to the inside of my turn.

Here is a discussion of trail-braking on the street, started by a man who teaches road-racing;

http://www.southbayriders.com/forums/showthread.php?t=62583

Riders with tens or even hundreds of thousands of miles of riding that are under the false sense of security that the techniques of slowing before entry and gliding in and out of corners using deft skills in throttle and steering inputs are the exact segment of riders that are paralyzed when it comes to using their front brake in a corner. They have hard wired their brain into the pattern that if something bad happens their proper response is to look through the corner and ride out of the situation. These poor bastards are just a single corner from having the worst day of their riding lives.

Robert Haas
 

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With the GL1800, we are adding some rear brake as we use the front, due to the linked braking system.
I could be wrong, and have been before, but I believe the linked system applies some amount of front brake when applying rear brake pressure.

Applying front brake on the GW has no effect on the rear brake.

Sorry to disagree, Wayne, but like you I think this is important stuff.
 

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Hello Dale,

From Gold Wing World: "Honda's Linked braking system (LBS) provides superb braking control over many conditions and varying road surfaces firstly by coupling the dual front and single rear brake discs. Using the front brake lever activates both the front calipers and the rear caliper. The rear brake pedal operates the rear brake caliper and the front calipers."

Dennis
 

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Discussion Starter #4
No problem. There is no direct hydraulic connection from the front master cylinder to the rear.

When the front master cylinder is applied, it applies pressure to one cylinder in the front left brake caliper.

The front left brake caliper trying to rotate with the disk, applies pressure to the secondary master cylinder.

The secondary master cylinder applies pressure to 2 cylinders in the rear brake caliper.

So, when you apply front brake, you get rear brake, unless you are stopped...
 

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If I remember right, isn't there some degree you can use the rear brake and the front doesn't "kick in"? I thought that was the case, but I could be wrong. I use my rear brake all the time in turns. I feel I have better control and my foot is there if needed.
 

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I don't think there is a reverse to front linking system. When you apply the rear brakes you are only working the back brakes. The front brakes when applied will activate the rear brakes via the secondary master cylinder. If this is wrong, I need to know!:eek:4:

John
 

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I don't think there is a reverse to front linking system. When you apply the rear brakes you are only working the back brakes. The front brakes when applied will activate the rear brakes via the secondary master cylinder. If this is wrong, I need to know!:eek:4:

John
you are aplying some ft with the rear pedal
 

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Kinda silly question

If you practice trail braking all the time, how long will your pads last. Seems like they would wear out rather quickly. Is this right? Is it worth it or should you just slow down? Thanks
 

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Linked or not - using the rear break on my wing works like a charm on slow tight turns
 

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Discussion Starter #10
If I remember right, isn't there some degree you can use the rear brake and the front doesn't "kick in"? I thought that was the case, but I could be wrong. I use my rear brake all the time in turns. I feel I have better control and my foot is there if needed.
Yes, but it is a pretty small amount before the fronts kick in.

Rear initially activates one cylinder in the rear and, with a bit more pressure, 2 in the left front and 1 in the right front. The left caliper trying to rotate with the rotor engages the secondary master cylinder that applies the other 2 cylinders in the rear.

From having tried both on the Wing, I don't really see much difference when it comes to trail-braking front or rear, BUT I'm a novice at this... On other bikes, I would not expect this to be the case.

On the Wing, I THINK it comes down to personal preference. I am choosing to practice it with the front lever so as to easily transfer it to other bikes.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
If you practice trail braking all the time, how long will your pads last. Seems like they would wear out rather quickly. Is this right? Is it worth it or should you just slow down? Thanks
Lee was asked about this in class and he said that, when done right, it generates little extra wear because you are not applying that much brake.

Whatever the cost, I feel that it is worth it to learn this skill, because there are many times when slowing to a speed where you are not outrunning your vision is simply not practical. I'm not talking about hauling a$$ here, I'm talking about keeping with the flow of traffic. Keep in mind that, if you are not on the brakes in a curve, the distance that you have to see ahead is far greater than if you were trail-braking.
 

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I learned trail braking on a non-linked system and using the rear brake. I typically have some small drag on the rear and compensate with the throttle. Minor tightening can be accomplished by adding a bit more brake or letting slightly off the throttle, same net effect. For abrupt changes I use more rear and will grab a little front (I always have 1 finger on the front in a turn) but that's a last resort because it will get in the way of managing the throttle, your right hand can only do so much at one time.

I also learned on bikes with relatively weak rear brakes. Many sport bikes rear brakes are designed to take a disproportionate amount of effort to lock the rear just to make trail braking easier. The first time I did it on my BMW K1200RS I almost locked it up...... Nothing like having to relearn old muscle memory.

So far I've only toyed with it a little on the wing but it feels like it will be real easy to modulate the brakes in the twisties as they don't grab and seem very linear.
 

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I think trail braking is very important. I personally find it easier with the rear brake but that's just me.
 

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I learned trail braking on a non-linked system and using the rear brake. I typically have some small drag on the rear and compensate with the throttle. Minor tightening can be accomplished by adding a bit more brake or letting slightly off the throttle, same net effect. For abrupt changes I use more rear and will grab a little front (I always have 1 finger on the front in a turn) but that's a last resort because it will get in the way of managing the throttle, your right hand can only do so much at one time..
:agree: I always drag the rear brake a bit going through a corner. As I approach I use both front and rear, then I transition off the front brakes as I am in the corner and applying throttle. I keep the rear in use (little or a lot depends) until I am mostly through the corner and I am in the throttle more.
 

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Brakes

I was told by my salesperson who sold many and has a decent knowledge about Goldwings that it's a 60/40 split.

If you hit the front brake first, 60% braking will go to the front, 40% to the rear and vice versa depending which one you work first.
 
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