Harley Davidson V-Rod Forum banner

1 - 14 of 14 Posts

·
COOLER RIDER
Joined
·
5,180 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Just thinking out loud. I remember in the Discovery show they were have problems getting air through the radiator and said it was shooting out the other side. (why not put a dam down the middle of it) They added the little fins or knuckles to stir the air a little. My question is in extreme turbulant conditions could this air shooting out towards the front wheel cause some kind of funky aroedynamics that could result in buffeting?
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
13,343 Posts
Not likely! At any speed, there is little likelihood of the radiator having any effect on the front wheel. It may, however, cause some body buffeting, but I doubt it. I have to believe that they tried the air dam thing to correct the airflow problems. I can easily believe that the vortex generators had a big effect. They certainly do on airplanes. I have big time concerns about putting screens on the inlets. The effective free area of a screen is much less than one would think (typicaly 50% or less).
Those living in the cold North probably shouldn't be concerned, But us in the south should either think long and hard before adding screens, or at least get a water temperature gauge.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
Get rid of those disk wheels...It got rid of 99% of the buffeting. Performance machine said they wouldn't ever make disk wheels for anything larver than a mini bike..They don't work! Buffeting is their issue. Just like on the "Fat Boys" I bought the Performance machine 3 spoke brushed aluminums and they look great and DO work. Call me if you have any more questions on this.. getting the front original wheel off makes most of the difference...It's sooo easy to do..the dealer charged me $45.00 for the labor..Then sell your wheel on e:BAY to a front end wreck person...It's easy and sooooooo much betta! 541 5431185
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,081 Posts
A little insight on how to handle crosswinds.

How to handle them
By James R. Davis

Sooner or later you are going to wonder about how to handle severe crosswinds - probably while fighting them.

Surprise, surprise - you don't have to do anything and the motorcycle will handle most crosswinds just fine - with only normal responses from you.

There are a couple of things that you can do to make the experience less stressful, however. For example, you can quit white-knuckling your grips. When you hold on tight you also tend to stiff arm your controls. That, as we've talked about before, merely allows front-end instability to propagate into the rest of the motorcycle. Relax your grips and droop your elbows. Allow your bike to be a bit unstable. Drive in the CENTER OF YOUR LANE. Lean forward and down to reduce your profile, and snug up your jacket.

What about traction? You neither gain nor lose any significant traction when the wind blows from your side unless you are in a curve. While you are leaned into the wind all of the weight of the bike remains on your tires (fancy that) and there is very little lateral force scrubbing that traction away.

How much lean do you need? Whatever the bike dials in for you.

Should you anticipate those gusts? Should you just respond quickly to a gust in order to remain in control and traveling in a straight line? No, and no. Your bike will NOT travel in a straight line. That is, as long as you allow it to do its thing, your bike will be modestly blown off course with a gust and the result of that movement is EXACTLY the same as any other minor course change - you will need modest counter-steer input to correct it - the CG of your bike will then be on the side the wind came from and the result is that it will lean towards the wind.

[Anticipating wind-sheer IS important under a couple of scenarios: the approach of an oncoming large vehicle suggests that severe buffeting will occur when you pass it, and entering or exiting stretches protected from the wind such as tunnels or bridges with relatively high retaining walls. In these cases you will certainly want to position the bike away from the source of the wind-sheer and insure you maintain a firm grip.]

Is a heavier bike less likely to be blown around than a lighter bike? Not necessarily. What is primarily determinant of how great the effect of a crosswind is on your bike is its profile. A garage door (GoldWing) will typically be more harshly affected by crosswinds than a lighter low profile bike.

Can you mitigate some of that instability in any way? Yes. There are cowling additions that can be designed (some are available off the shelf - called 'belly pans') that streamline the airflow under your bike and help (modestly) to reduce crosswind handling problems.

Your side profile area is what determines how your motorcycle reacts to crosswinds. Just as there is a Center of Gravity, there is also a Center of wind resistance. If that center of wind resistance is in front of your Center of Gravity then crosswinds will tend to push you off course while if it is behind your Center of Gravity the motorcycle will try to steer INTO the wind. Thus, mounting a high profile LIGHT object (a stuffed animal, for example) onto your trunk lid or your pillion can have a dramatically corrective effect rather than worsen the bike's steering reaction to those crosswinds.

Crosswinds can be murder if you are leaned way over in a curve. Don't, if you can avoid it.

As a result of a crosswind your bike will move off course and normal modest counter-steer will lean it into the wind. A strong gust will blow you out of track. So, correct your steering, gently, and keep going.

I admit that sometimes a gust can be ferocious! I was on the Golden gate bridge once when a crosswind blew me into the adjacent lane! But the bike was in no danger of falling down and it was easy to get back in lane. Had the gust been a sustained blast I would have been leaned over nearly 45 degrees. It was not, thankfully.

Note ... there are TWO times when a gusty crosswind changes your bike's direction of travel: when it hits, and when it stops. Both require that you allow the bike to respond and use normal modest counter-steering. (When it quits you will be leaned over and, as a result, your bike will move towards where the wind WAS coming from until you straighten it up.

If crosswinds involve huge short gusts, go park the bike. If the crosswinds are more sustained, pucker up and keep going.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
161 Posts
Deagleus,

That was a lot of information, but I agree. My V-ROD corrects for side winds all by itself. It leans into the wind when the when blows and stands back up after the wind stops. I don't do anything. The only bumping around I get is when I follow to close behind a vehicle that is not Aero Dynamic (truck, suv and mini vans) and that is a whole different story. I think most riders have problem with the wind because the handle bars are closer together and a small movement in the bars causes more reaction from the V-ROD than other bikes. Just my two pennies again.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
2,313 Posts
I think many of the loudest complainers are new riders and aren't used to motorcycles.


I never even noticed it until I thought about it...yes, my V gets tossed around quite a bit when up close to a semi on a windy day. I just never noticed anything non-motorcycle about it, figured it's just the way it is on a bike.
I'm sure the solid wheels makes it worse, but hey, it's a bike, part of the experience, kinda like bugs in the face.
Just relax and let it do it's thing, correct it as need be.

Gotta admit though, I have lusted after a set of the PM wheels for some time...maybe that time is soon :D

PS: my 4700 lb pickup truck gets tossed around pretty good on a windy day and you can really feel it getting buffeted when in behind a semi even on a calm day, I even remember one really gusty day when I was tossed out of my lane into another - yes, in a truck!
 

·
COOLER RIDER
Joined
·
5,180 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
:rolleyes: Maybe I just need another 32 years riding.
I've had all kinds and have never experienced even close to this much wind turbulance around traffic. It's mostly when I have the POS super sport shield on. With the bracket turned upside down the shield is raised up getting air under it and making things 10 times worse. Anyone want a SS shield?
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
13,343 Posts
I'm with Deagelus. Just go with the flow. I HAVE been riding for 35 years. I have been paying attention to crosswinds and truck turbulence, etc.because pf all these discussions. I really don't think its dangerous to just let the bike have its way with a little suggestion now and then. The major problem with truck turbulence, in my opi nion, is it creates wind noise that interferes with me hearing my music! If you want to spend 2 large on pretty wheels, go ahead, and I'm sure you will be convinced it is better, but maybe only because your wallet is that much lighter. JMHO.
 

·
Making the UK Fatter
Joined
·
2,606 Posts
I just changed the front wheel because I hate the way the turbulance takes over, it's solid as rock now. It was a lot of money but it was worth every penny (cent). Get used to it if you can, if you can't you know what to do.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
636 Posts
OKIE said:
:rolleyes: Maybe I just need another 32 years riding.
I've had all kinds and have never experienced even close to this much wind turbulance around traffic. It's mostly when I have the POS super sport shield on. With the bracket turned upside down the shield is raised up getting air under it and making things 10 times worse. Anyone want a SS shield?
I'm with you Okie! After my trip to Branson Mo. without the super sport on the way up and with it on the way back I could feel a major difference. Then the trip to KC up and back with it made my mind up for good and I took it off never to put it back on! I don’t see double from all the wind buffeting anymore and it’s also a lot quieter. The bike is more stable in strong wind gusts too. I just get more bugs in the chest now. :) Are you ready for Ivan?
 

·
Red Hot Rod
Joined
·
1,084 Posts
I have the same problems with buffeting as everyone else, but it seems to be less of a problem when I keep the tire pressures up to spec. I still have the solid wheel and had a lot of crosswinds on the Sturgis trip. Sometimes it's not much fun but you learn to deal with it. I have the small windscreen but didn't notice much difference with or without it. Maybe someday I will get to ride one with an open wheel to see if that really make any difference......
 

·
Registered Confuser
Joined
·
828 Posts
I think the key is to relax your grip and bend the elbows, like the artical said. My first ride on the V-Rod I took it on the highway and nearly crapped my pants passing a truck. Now trucks are no problem. I think it comes from being comfortable on the bike. If your tense on the handle bar it dances all over the place. If you relax, the bike will wiggle a bit under the seat, but you will stay put.
 

·
Live Free or Die
Joined
·
938 Posts
I concur with the replacement of the Disk wheels to improve this situation. I now have enough miles on windy days to say that my new 5-spoked wheels significantly reduce the cross wind buffeting. It makes the V-Rod feel like any other high performance motorcycle.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
60 Posts
Well, being a newbie rider with 500 miles of seat time I can totally relate to this. My first experience with mild crosswinds made me pull over. I found myself all tensed up...deep breath and relax got me through that day. Yesterday, I took a 150 mile trip with a buddy on 2 lane east-west roads with a 15-20 mph wind out of the south. Yesterday, I relaxed and just let it toss the bike around, it was irritating but not a problem. As stated before, the bike seemed to automatically lean into the wind for the gusts, then correct itself (without any apperent input from me, but my guess is it was just my auto reaction). Also, I found that keeping my head up and looking further up the road seemed to help a lot. Biggest key was to not fight it and trust the bike.

Two biggest problems I hit:
#1. Three semi trucks all in a tight formation coming at me from the other direction...gusts got progressively worse after each truck. Glad there weren't 8 of them! Yikes! My partner had to pull over and re-adjust his helmet after that head-on blast.

#2 On the way back, tall corn on the wind side, then up a slight hill where a north/south street was and a plowed field. The gust there moved me a foot or too, felt like I skipped tracks, had to do a pretty big correction on that one and also slowed down a bit, which seemed to help. That one freaked me a bit...

I have yet to get on the interstate with the bike...but I feel I will never learn unless I just go do it. After my ride yesterday I don't think I'll have a problem. I guess I just accept that as normal operation and will live with it until I scrape up some change for new wheels (quite a while off methinks).

I also noticed that following a truck (even at 35-45mph) caused the bike to wander around the road like on a grated/grooved road, but the wind didn't seem all that bad. If I put about 7 carlengths between me and the truck it stopped. I think the solid 'airfoils' had a lot to do with that one.

Great article...thanks!
 
1 - 14 of 14 Posts
Top