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Discussion Starter #1
How dangerous?

I am a new rider but with the light rain today, I am thinking about a ride. :D

Just slow down, leave more distance between cars, and break eariler?

Is it an 1/2 an hour or 1 hour before the oils of the road wash off the road?

How much less traction is there?

If we ride long enough, we will all ride in the rain anyway.

thanks,

Tom.
 

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I commute on my bike everyday, rain or shine. It is really not that big of a deal just take it slower than normal. As long as you have good tires you will be fine. Take turns MUCH slower than normal. Oh, and watch out for crappy drivers, they will notice you even less with their wipers on.
 

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I
 

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Go slow..then go even slower..use more rear brake....avoid standing water and ride in the tracks of the cars where the water is cleared. Expect it to be very slippery. Wear ALL your safety gear. Stick to roads you know and expect dirt and sand to be washed across the road in places you don't want sand and dirt.

I ride home in the rain all the time. It is not that bad.

Don't panic if the rear brake locks up on mild stops - ride the skid and hopefully you left yourself enough room. You can test the conditions by trying to lock the rear as you approach a stop (lock it at 5 mph not anything crazy). You'll get an idea of how the traction is and moderate your riding accordingly.

Maybe worth learning with a quick ride but I'd avoid any spirited rides. You need to learn sometime.
 

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I ride in the rain all the time, today again, home from work.
 

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Rain is fun for back roads riding. Very different from commuting. The roads are deserted and as long as the winds are not too strong, it can be a great experience.

Things to add to other comments: watch out for any metal surface on the road, such as man-holes, road patches, cattle guards, train rails, and tar patches (dark line seals on the roads surface). They become very slick when wet. It's best to avoid them or at least take on them in a straight-perpendicular line, straightening your bike temporarily if you have to.

It's normal to have the rear tire slip on them a little, just let it snap back and you'll be fine. The key is riding smooth and avoiding abrupt inputs on throttle and brakes.

When taking turns, keep the bike upright by hanging off way to the side, even at modest angles. You can go pretty fast in the rain, but obviously slower than normal days.

Gear-wise: in pouring rain, textile suits will not be enough. The most effective gear would be a bicycle rain suit over your leather suit, goretex rain gloves, and either goretex boots or plastic boot covers over your regular boots.

And make sure your tire grooves have enough depth left. [smiley=waytogo.gif]
 

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I bought a new Triumph 750 Bonneville in Germany in 1980. It rained for the next 64 days straight, everyday. I commuted over 75 miles a day.Trial by fire.
You must have a smooth hand on throttle, clutch and brake. Do not be afraid to keep your feet down on tight corners. Yoou may have to crack the visor open a bit to prevent fogging. I silicone a small strip of wiper blade across the back of my fingers on my left glove, to wipe the visor. But I commute 125 miles a day now, on the bike, rain or shine.
 

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My first gear gloves come with a rain wiper on the left hand glove,index finger.
 

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Things to add to other comments: watch out for any metal surface on the road, such as man-holes, road patches, cattle guards, train rails, and tar patches (dark line seals on the roads surface). They become very slick when wet. It's best to avoid them or at least take on them in a straight-perpendicular line, straightening your bike temporarily if you have to.
Paint gets slick also, so watch out for that!!
 
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Discussion Starter #10
I've done it once, at night in a pouring rain. Wasn't much fun, but I don't have to worry about rain too much where I live. Just give yourself plenty of braking room and try to anticipate things much sooner ... or wait till the pavement dries. :)
 

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I'm also a 7/24/365 rider and a distance rider too, so rain is just part of the territory. After the oils are lifted, wet pavement is about as sticky as dry, especially with today's silicone rubber tires. The dangers are puddles, any manhole covers, steel plates, RR tracks and paint, but mostly, cage drivers.

Ride slower, watch the cars, watch the road surface, dress for the water, and enjoy the ride.

-Don
 

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I'm one of those people who doesn't mind riding in the rain, especially out in the rural areas.

The big thing to watch for when riding out in the sticks is the fact that water rolling down a hillside typically runs right where the curves are (assuming that the hillside has been shaped by erosion), so I'm cautious about either heavy water flow across the curve and the possibillity that sediments may be on the road surface.

In more populated areas, my big concern is the differential speed between drivers who completely freak out in the rain and drive at half the speed limit and the people who don't slow down at all and tend to weave between the slower drivers. I'll actively try to create as much space as possible between me and the cages (even if it means picking it up a bit on the straight roads), and I'm more concerned with where my escape routes are when I'm in traffic.

--Fillmore
 

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Oddly enough, here in SoCal, I find most drivers are more aware and courteous in the rain. They are less likely to be doing other things, and give me more room (whether out of pity or that they think I'm just nuts).

How long it takes to wash off the oil dpends on how long it's been since the last rain. Here it doesn't rain often. The first rain of the season could easily be dealing with 6 to 9 months of dry. On that day I stay home. After that first rain, though, it's no problem.

philb
 

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If your curious about traction lightly press down on your rear brake until it locks up . Try to do it when no one is behind you. I do this to gauge traction on wet pavement.When you let go of brake your tire will spin out of lock up.
 

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Be a smooth as possible with everything, smooth riders usually make the best rain riders (according to racing anyway).

Dan
 

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Might sound obvious, but check the sole of your shoes, make sure they're not worn out. I have a pair of boots I ride with and wear a lot, the treads are getting pretty warn. I put my foot down on a crosswalk that was wet and my foot slid a good foot, scared the crap out of me but I was able to hold myself up.
 

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If there is severe thunderstorms pull over, don’t even attempt to ride.  Strong wind gust with heavy rain will ruin your day.  Riding in light to moderate rain is something that you should be proficient in for safety reasons.  Make sure that your left index finger has a wiper.  Rain gear is very nice but not critical.  The most important thing is to slow down and ride as smoothly as possible.
 

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Also, MSS says that if your rear tire is locked up, dont let go of the brake, keep it locked until you come to a complete stop. Rain or no rain.
 
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