Back from not riding! -
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 03-04-2010, 07:53 AM Thread Starter
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Back from not riding!

I haven't been on the forum much the past few months and have been busy moving cross country. No more beautiful weather in San Diego, well the weather was crap the last month I was there! But on the good side of things, here in the south east I was able to get out and do a track day!!! Got to do a day at Barber Motorsports, one of the most beautiful track in America by far.

The bike had some brand new Michelins and the conditions were near perfect, sunny with weather in the 50-60 and not much winds...

first time ever for me taking the bike to that sort of speed and first time in about 4 years since I did any real riding...took the morning sessions to get acclimated to the speed again as well as the characteristics of the bike and tires when going at that speed. I started working up to some semblance of form and got some advises on line selection (it's been 5 years since I've been to Barber...) then it was time to pick up the pace! The bike got tons of look!!! people were puzzled if they weren't familiar with the bike and some were straight up shocked to see the bike go at that speed..."not bad for a cruiser" I was told...(we'll forgive his cruiser remarks because he said he loved the way the bike looks!)
Others who knew the bike were surprised that I would venture to take such a beauty to the track! I asked them what better place to ride this beautiful machine fast and safe...? But I see their point too...that's a lot of money to throw down the pavement! Best part of the day...passing some GXR-1k on the brakes going into turn 1 then powering past an R1 on the outside of turn 2 with the knee on the ground and then power wheelie up turn 4 on the gas!!! Ok, those two guys weren't the fastest dudes in the group but they weren't slow either....But still, that was the highlight of the day for me!

The downside were the fueling which was very pronounced when coming out of slow turns and I seem to have some sort of dip in 4th gear near the top part of the band. when coming out of slow turns in 2nd gear, if I had to delay getting on the gas and let the rpm drop too much it would be incredibly sluggigh and sputtering like crazy when I opened the throttle again. This was partly due to my lack of proficiency with the bike and not being smooth with the right hand, but it's not as forgiving as a Japanese sport bike for sure! There was also a very pronounced power dip at the top end of the band in 4th gear which gave me some scare when rolling on on the front straight, but that was easy to remedy by short shifting.

The bike did not like being flipped from side to side, it felt like a freight train compared to my R6 or even R1 from 8 years ago! The suspension is definitely a big culprit in that department, I can tell when I started to pick up the pace that the front was chattering like crazy when pushed hard, and you could see on the tire wear as well! The rear tire was cold tearing like crazy, and the shock did not like it when I got on the throttle hard exiting turns while still leaned over...but that again is partly me not being smooth with the right hand yet.

The brakes were really strong! way more than i thought they would be, but the feel is weird...I can't describe it, almost as if it was spongy....but that's not the case because I was able to do some pretty aggressive braking without getting much brake fade over time...I think the feel is due to the master cylinder...not entirely sure on this one.

Overall, the bike is not purely a sportbike and definitely not a race bike, but it was a complete blast to ride. The riding position is definitely strange at the track, but once you get used to it, it's quite a fun ride. The suspension can probably be tweaked, but I don't think I'm going to spend money throwing some high end components on it, I'll just ride around those shortcomings. I came to the conclusion that the amount of money i would need to get good suspension, I can probably buy a used 600 track bike with that stuff already!

My brother was there with his SLR camera taking pics, I'll post them up once we resize them...

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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 03-04-2010, 09:54 AM
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you drove which bike ???
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 03-04-2010, 01:58 PM Thread Starter
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 03-24-2010, 09:21 PM Thread Starter
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finally some pics of my first TD on the Brute
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