Yamaha FZ-09 Forum banner

1 - 20 of 185 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,181 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Alrighty, for those that have known me on here for a while, you can save your I-told-you-so's til the end :p

It was a dark and stormy night... Well, it was dark, and it was Monday, and it was rainy later that night... I digress.

Visual Aid:


I was coming back from a store, decided to ride down this rode for a more interesting and less-trafficked ride than the normal route. I was driving a little spirited, for me, that meant 10-12 over the limit on a 45mph road (no other cars, wide road, great visibility, mostly straight). By the time I got to this area point though, that kind of riding was done. I was already around more traffic, was within the speed limit (I am thinking at the point I went down I was doing around 25mph), and was slowing for the turn ahead. This is downhill and apparently on a rather slick bit of road (I know this because I locked up the tires and there are no tire marks, which I find interesting. Is that normal?).

You can see the 3 arrows denoting 3 manhole covers in a row. I had not ridden on this road with my bike before, and only occasionally in my car. It was about 5pm, which means it was nearly dark here in Dayton. I had just crested a hill, so coming down the hill I hit the first manhole, which was a rather bumpy occasion. So I moved over to the right to avoid the next one, which I could see, though I couldn't yet see the 3rd one. As I started leaning into the turn, I saw the 3rd one. As soon as I saw it, and how big the depression was (bigger than the other two) I knew I was going down. So I stood up the bike to hit it straight on and got on the brakes immediately after.

I don't know if it was the slick road, or the suspension still being upset, or me being to aggressive (likely the last one), but the wheels locked up and the bike got squirrelly. I saw the oncoming guardrail and tried to modulate the brakes and turn, but I just instantly went down on my left side. I somehow was free of the bike, and the bike and I slid on. I tumbled a little and we both ended up against the guard-rail. The bike had hit hard enough to bend the front rim (see pics below and a link to the full album of pictures), deflate the tire, and make it unrideable. The engine still started, though, (after an inspection) and sounds just fine.

My wrist hurt a bit, as did my left thigh. By the time I stood up, a guy had already stopped to help out. I was loaded with adrenaline, it was dark, I took off my helmet (still playing music over my sena, which I shut off), found the visor wasn't on it any more, found my left glove was ripped open at the seam under the thumb while I was taking it off, took off my glasses, and put them all in my helmet. Apparently I later kicked over the helmet and stepped on my glasses (which were only a week old) so I'm rather annoyed about that. The gloves were real light-weight gloves from a local store, Fox brand, and the same day I wrecked I had ordered Teknic Violators; which is a happy coincidence. My leathers, Rev'It Ignition 2 jacket, Rev'It Gear 2 pants, look almost completely untouched. They're a little dirty, but that's it. That's another reason I think the road surface is rather slick there. I slid a good 40-50' or so, I'm thinking. The funny thing is my right jacket pocket came open and my phone flung out while I tumbled and was on the other side of the guard-rail. You can see in the images that my helmet and visor had a good scuff on them, I think that's where I hit the curb.

Worst part of all this, I had literally JUST received the T-rex protection kit right before I departed the house! So it's all sitting fresh and happy on my kitchen table.

From what I can tell, the bike was supported by the engine cover, radiator corner, handlebar end & brake lever, turn signal, and tire while it was sliding, as there is no damage to anything past the engine cover, except the bike stand, which I think was hit on the curb. (Edit: rear wheel has a big gouge, according to the shop)

Clearly my lack of experience contributed mostly to the accident, not knowing the road, twilight conditions, cool weather (50s), stock tires, big giant manhole depressions, slick road, and a noob rider. Did I mention I'm new?

Did the fact that this is an FZ-09 have anything to do with it? no, because I was not over-riding the bike, I was over-riding my awareness of the conditions and my ability to handle them. This was low-speed, so I'm thinking it was just my own lack of experience that cause this, and it would have happened on any bike I was riding.

The one factor that I've been becoming more aware of is that these stock Dunlops do not like temps below 50, and I have been losing confidence in them, and now have very little. As part of the bike repair I am going to be getting much better tires. Probably those Dunlop P3's (or is it Q3?), and I may just decide to do a cool weather set, and a summer set.

I am mostly ok. My wrist may be fractured, it has swollen, but between my final divorce court hearing, huge workload (thanks to two folks on my team going on vacation), and life stuff, I haven't had it checked out yet. Tomorrow I'm going to urgent care now that I've signed up for my own insurance (had to wait for the divorce to complete so I wasn't using my ex-wife's military insurance). I have a big giant thigh-long bruise on my left leg, very slightly sore ribs on left side (mainly when I sneeze), weird chevron like bruise on my right shoulder, but in great shape over all. I'm definitely ready to get out and ride again (if my wrist allows) and practice not crashing :)

if you have questions, comments, i-told-you-so's, by all means, let 'em fly!

12/5 Update: Shop says it looks borderline totaled. Adjuster report in the morning

All images:
http://www.yamahafz09.com/forum/album.php?albumid=56

A few select images:

Front Rim (bent badly enough to hit the caliper and prevent rolling, only reason I couldn't ride home):
2013-12-04 11.24.43.jpg

Helmet (I think the curb did this):
2013-12-02 22.12.00.jpg

The Manhole in question, doesn't look too bad here, but it has a raised ring of asphalt around it, and the manhole is lower than the road surface:
2013-12-02 18.19.14.jpg

The bike with circles around all damaged areas I know of:
2013-12-04 11.24.29.jpg
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,370 Posts
You are lucky man, glad your okay.

From the looks of it you might have some frame damage...

Sweet helmet btw.

Sorry to hear about your personal ordeals, when it rains it pours but in the end sunlight will prevail.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
198 Posts
Glad you're ok! Post mortem observation: target fixation, both the manhole cover and the guardrail. One of the hardest things to train your brain to do is to not look at the threat, but look at the way out! Even after 40+ years of riding, I still have to smack myself on occasion!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,081 Posts
Glad you're ok! Post mortem observation: target fixation, both the manhole cover and the guardrail. One of the hardest things to train your brain to do is to not look at the threat, but look at the way out! Even after 40+ years of riding, I still have to smack myself on occasion!
Glad you are okay!

This from NittanyXt reminded me of my class i took. (non MSF, but the instructors are motorcycle cop instructors with 20+ years of riding on the force) They would yell at you every time you looked down at the cones or even ahead at a tree(a very scared and beaten tree from people doing just looking at their threat) Where you look is where you go.

Now that you have gotten the drop out of the way I'm glad you came out of it relatively unscathed! The 09 doesn't look ruined and you seem to have a good outlook. The left fork is definitely bent at least as far as the image shows.

The dunlops are scary when its cold out, which is why i've been caged this week, i get this horrible speed wobble in the front when i accelerate and my rear tire spins. I've been going around corners upright like i have training wheels.

Kudos to you for sharing your experience. I'm not sure if i would do the same. Glad you had on protective gear! those new gloves look awesome.

-z
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,806 Posts
sorry to hear about that. a lot of us know what you're going through.

i agree with baconrocket, that left fork tube is definitely bent. onlinecycleparts.com has it for about $360 so that's not too bad.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,181 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
thanks for the kind words, fellas. I have nearly full coverage, $250 deductible, so I should be good to go. Hopefully the premium won't increase... I need to get a hold of the police report and see what he wrote on there.

I do see now that the forks are not parallel anymore. Poop.

Yeah, I know what you mean about target fixation. I think fixating on the manholes was the worst fixation that led into this. By the time I focused on the guardrail it was probably too late anyhow.

Funny thing is, the guy that stopped to help out decided that was a good time to tell me about his buddy that got decapitated a short distance away...
 

·
Vendor
Joined
·
3,297 Posts
Eo, glad to hear you are in good-ish health and spirits. It could have been so much worse; guard rails are known for taking legs off!

After seeing those pictures, I would be surprised if the bike isn't totaled. So be prepared for that.

I feel for you guys who have the Dunflops. The Bridgestones are still a sport tire (in the sense that they aren't great under freezing), but they are still rip-able in the 30's. The 50's threshold is truly startling, if the stories are correct. I've never personally owned a street tire that didn't work over ~35F.

My guess..and just a guess...is that you locked the front brake either on the metal manhole cover or afterward when the suspension was still correcting (by the looks of your fork, you've been using ALL of the travel). Those steel covers are slick! Armchair quarterbacking is easy, but you may have been ok if you held your line without braking. But, it's entirely possible that there was coolant, fuel, oil, etc. on the road. About 6 years ago, I blew a starter gasket on a Buell XB while at Summit Point. I greased up the rear at about 70 mph and the rest was history. I literally never saw this coming (which is likely what kept me loose enough to walk away).

Glad to hear you're OK. Good luck healing and dealing with the insurance company.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,424 Posts
It could happen to any of us; I am just glad you are OK. I was behind a friend on his 1198 Ducati in Indy, and watched him hit a manhole. the rear kicked sideways because he was turning, then hit the back lip. It kicked him 2 feet off the pegs as the bike went into a tank slapper. To this day, I don't know how he saved it. I watched him from behind total a BMW GS600 in Costa Rica hitting a patch of volcanic ash. Some days are better than others.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,008 Posts
When do you expect the insurance estimate? If you get a dent in the side of a car the insurance will pay for a body shop to fix it, but I think for bikes they generally replace all damaged parts. So wheel, tank, radiator, alternator cover, etc. The fork looks bent to me too, and with that wheel damage I'd expect it to be even if not enough to be visible. Even if it's only the lower left tube that really needs fixing/replacing the insurance company might put both complete forks in the estimate, maybe the triples too. If all the damaged parts are replaced it will be valued as a used bike that has been crashed, there's a real chance that the insurance company will declare it totaled. Sucks either way.



Never pay again for live sex! | Hot girls doing naughty stuff for free! | Chat for free!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,081 Posts
I am really curious what the insurance company says. I've had some really close calls with mahole covers, those and paint on the roads after or during the rain.
 
  • Like
Reactions: eolith

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,202 Posts
It shows character to post your 'sins' on this board, I probably would have wanted to just go away. I dropped my 1st new bike the 1st day I had it, and then a few more times over the next few years...I've crashed bikes about 5 times, and 2 very minor drops (fall overs)...I think most new riders drop their 1st bike a couple times.
...experienced riders too.
I almost bit it twice on a ride this week, one was target fixation. Coming up an uphill turn, went from sun to shadow, and I saw leaves in the turn...but not well because of coming into shade. I tried braking in the turn and started going right to my target...fortunately I woke up, let go of the brake, and rode through the turn....DEFINITELY scolded myself after that.
Other time was in traffic, car ahead of me just stopped...almost ate the fender...
This was just the other day...

My guess is that you didnt need to brake at all, and it was just your self preservation mechanism kicking in when you finally saw the 3rd manhole cover and curb, you thought "slow down Eolith" and then you grabbed too much brake.

If you are ever unsure about the road, at low speeds just drag your boots on the road...you'll get a feel for how much grip you have. If you dont have confidence in your traction you need to go into instant granny mode...unconfident riders crash.

Also, $hit just happens. Glad you're not hurt bad. Give a hug to your gear tonight. Sorry about your bike...it hurts to see it like that but its a good warning to all of us. You're not the 1st and you won't be the last. Its so easy to get drunk with the wheelies and grunt of this bike, I tend to easily take for granted the hazards.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,202 Posts
I am really curious what the insurance company says. I've had some really close calls with mahole covers, those and paint on the roads after or during the rain.
yeah...those wide painted lines have been freaking me out lately. I am always tempted to rail it though an intersection...but I dont trust those stupid lines
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,181 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
I just got off the phone with the cycle shop today, where it currently resides (where I bought it), and they said it looks borderline totaled. They said the adjuster just looked at it a bit earlier, and he'll report back in the morning. They also said the found a big gouge in the rear wheel, which I figure is from hitting the guardrail bass-ackwards.

In looking at the pictures, i think this is what they're referring to, you can also see how the tire has a lot of scuffing there, too:

2013-12-04 11.26.10.jpg
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
244 Posts
Thanks for sharing and opening up to us... happy you walked away, and sorry about the gear, glasses and upcoming *&^# divorce!
Sending good thoughts to you, and get back riding and enjoy :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,008 Posts
1 - 20 of 185 Posts
Top