Author Topic: Traction: Am I missing something?  (Read 5424 times)

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Offline Carbon-Kid

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Traction: Am I missing something?
« on: November 24, 2012, 10:00:47 PM »
Hello All...

As a MTB Newbie, I must be missing something here. My last ride out was not fun. Skidding off the track on Redgum kind of spoilt the day.

Now I am not sure if it is a position on the bike thing or setup. I ran tubeless Nobby Nic's at 32psi on the day. Normally I run less.

Is it possible that I am too far back on the bike and therefore have not enough weight on the front wheel? I do at times find the steering really light and twitchy depending on how I position myself fore/aft on the pedals.

Is there any advice anyone can offer me to determine where my traction issues lie?
My ride: Giant Trance Advanced SL0 (2012).

All my MTB videos can be found here at my Vimeo channel VarioVideoMTB.

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Offline lard

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Re: Traction: Am I missing something?
« Reply #1 on: November 24, 2012, 10:16:26 PM »
How heavy are you?  32 seems hard.  I'm ~82kg and I run 25-28psi tubeless.   Soft =  more grip, less slip.    Also sliding out can be a result of technique.  Force yourself to look up the track more,  point your belly button where you want to go and let your bike follow.

Offline Carbon-Kid

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Re: Traction: Am I missing something?
« Reply #2 on: November 24, 2012, 10:27:18 PM »
Thank you for the reply.

I am 6'2" and 93kg.

Normally I run the pressure around 28-30psi. But yesterday I decided to try it a bit higher. I suspect that maybe it was bit too high and I was loosing traction. I could feel the bike "skating" around. In fact I have found riding around the Park very slippery, with the trails being very loose and dusty.

Many times I have read (and been told) to point the belly button in the direction you want to go. Same as looking ahead. From a newbie position, that's easier said than done..!!! :)

My ride: Giant Trance Advanced SL0 (2012).

All my MTB videos can be found here at my Vimeo channel VarioVideoMTB.

Yes, full face helmets are hot.

Offline lard

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Re: Traction: Am I missing something?
« Reply #3 on: November 24, 2012, 11:32:14 PM »
The trails are a litle slippery lately.  i was out wednesday night and had a sketchy corners. I just managed to keep the bike upright gladly :)     another thing is think about how you're cornering,  ride like an f1 car.  start the corner wide, head for the apex, then end wide.  Also Lean the bike over more and try to trust your tyres.  Have a look on you tube for mtb techniques/skills videos as well, there's a stack of  good ones around.

Offline ray_coleman

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Re: Traction: Am I missing something?
« Reply #4 on: November 27, 2012, 04:23:09 PM »
i was going to suggest go speedway style and hang the back wheel out but probably not a good suggestion if we want to keep riding on the trails

Offline IIITAK3NIII

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Re: Traction: Am I missing something?
« Reply #5 on: November 28, 2012, 10:03:11 AM »

Offline Brossie (Tim)

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Re: Traction: Am I missing something?
« Reply #6 on: November 28, 2012, 12:26:08 PM »
I find it always takes a few rides to transition from the sticky winter trails, back to the dry dusty summer trails.

Interestingly Lard, I run my Nics at 35psi and love it. Though I did have a big heart stopper at Blores over the weekend. when I got the front wheel sliding at 90 degrees to the frame. FUN.
Keep Rollin' Rollin' Rollin.

Offline Davemcc

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Re: Traction: Am I missing something?
« Reply #7 on: November 29, 2012, 02:09:15 PM »
Why not invest in a skills course. Good cornering involves lots of different skills, good tyres only get you so far.

Offline Oliver

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Re: Traction: Am I missing something?
« Reply #8 on: November 29, 2012, 06:34:29 PM »
DRMTB has great deals for club members. See Martins posts I am sure doc wil repost on his specials....

Offline Carbon-Kid

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Re: Traction: Am I missing something?
« Reply #9 on: November 29, 2012, 06:48:08 PM »
DRMTB has great deals for club members. See Martins posts I am sure doc wil repost on his specials....

And I very much enjoyed the course. It reinforced a lot for me..!!
My ride: Giant Trance Advanced SL0 (2012).

All my MTB videos can be found here at my Vimeo channel VarioVideoMTB.

Yes, full face helmets are hot.

Offline Carbon-Kid

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Re: Traction: Am I missing something?
« Reply #10 on: January 08, 2013, 06:23:26 PM »
Hello All...

I was thankfully very lucky to have a "one on one" lesson with Martin from DRMTB with the aim of furthering my skills. During the lesson we focussed on cornering skills. And it was here I discovered where I was going wrong, causing a major loss of front wheel traction.

This became even more evident when I washed out on a sweeping bend later in the lesson and had my pedal bite me in the shins..... Bugger..!!!

Anyway, after altering my setup slightly and adopting a new riding position, I attacked the trails. As my new position is more forward, I had heaps of front wheel grip. Very rarely did I have an issue holding corners and trails. In fact I found myself able to negotiate the twists and turns without slipping or running wide.

What I did notice:
- My brain's constant "Oh SHIT...!!!" due to being more forward.
- Occasional over balance by being too forward. Nearly went OTB.
- Log roll overs need a new approach. I was nearly kicked OTB when the rear wheel went over.

All in all, I was really happy about my new found traction.
My ride: Giant Trance Advanced SL0 (2012).

All my MTB videos can be found here at my Vimeo channel VarioVideoMTB.

Yes, full face helmets are hot.

Offline gormanio

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Re: Traction: Am I missing something?
« Reply #11 on: January 08, 2013, 07:29:54 PM »
thats good to know, i had the same problem and took lots of pressure out my tyres which helped a bit but i still lost the front end a few times. i will try leaning forward as suggested to you to see if that helps,

Offline Silverfern

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Re: Traction: Am I missing something?
« Reply #12 on: January 09, 2013, 11:38:21 AM »
Im a relative new rider ( 12 months) and Ive been having a few issues in the gravel areas on corners lately , not dirt so much ,

No crashes , but a bit more slide than Im comfortable with ,

Might be time to brush up on technique as well.

Offline IIITAK3NIII

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Re: Traction: Am I missing something?
« Reply #13 on: January 09, 2013, 11:55:51 AM »
After learning the technique in this video I have never gone back. So bloody helpful I cannot stress it.

I also put a 2.35 inch Maxxis Ignitor upfront which helps a shit tonne too.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gF5K9V2w6W8

Offline Carbon-Kid

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Re: Traction: Am I missing something?
« Reply #14 on: January 09, 2013, 12:25:58 PM »
This is what I have done to increase grip and get better control.

1: Lowered stem by 10mm.
2: Shorten stem from 110mm to 70mm.
3: Move saddle forward.
4: Adopt a more forward stance on the pedals.

The reason for moving the seat forward is due to me not yet being strong enough, allowing me stay seated and still have more front wheel grip than before. Add to this, I bend the elbows more which "leans" me forward a bit more. The only disadvantage (rear wheel traction) I have noticed here, is that on seated climbs, I don't need to slide forward as much as before.

As an exercise, I tried zig zagging along gravel paths very aggressively whilst adopting a new riding position. At no point did I slip. Interestingly, there is a fair degree of hesitation being forward. It seems very counter intuitive to what my brain wants. I feel like I want to fly over the bars! But the difference in control and grip is huge.

Learning to MTB is certainly a challenge. And one I am enjoying.
My ride: Giant Trance Advanced SL0 (2012).

All my MTB videos can be found here at my Vimeo channel VarioVideoMTB.

Yes, full face helmets are hot.

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