Traction Control for a a bug-eyed ST-R? - Triumph675.Net Forums
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post #1 of 23 Old 02-15-17, 14:28 Thread Starter
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Traction Control for a a bug-eyed ST-R?

Hi all,

I've already suffered a highside with my ST-R during a trackday and although it can be attributed to a freak combination of factors (I was on a warm-up lap) it still felt like an unprovoked betrayal on the bike's part.

So, having suffered some permanent ligament damage in my knee and shoulder I'm looking for something that maybe will save my *ss next time another freak occurence happens.

So having seen the offerings around I'm wondering if anybody here has used any of them and what your impressions are. I only care about traction control's effectiveness as a highside prevention measure, I don't care at all about optimization or maximization of the bikes acceleration out of turns. Something that will reliably and consistently close the throttle before the back wheel steps out beyond redemption.

Thanks a lot for any contributions.

PS: Yes, I know that there is no substitute for the rider's skill and a traction control won't save me if I simply twist the throttle wide open out of every turn - knowing all these I still appreciate that the machine's reflexes are way faster than my own and I want to take advantage of that, as an added cushion of safety.

"I've seen things you people wouldn't believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I watched their c-beams glitter in the dark near the Tannhauser Gate. All those moments will be lost in time... like... tears in rain. Time to die."

Roy Batty, Blade Runner.
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post #2 of 23 Old 02-15-17, 15:19
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Have you been tuning your bike with TuneECU? Adding traction control to your bike won't be terribly cheap or simple, but the simplest way would probably be with a Bazzaz unit. You'd first need their fuel control module at $350, so that would effectively replace TuneECU. Then you'd need their traction control add-on at $860.

If you're willing to spend over $1200 for the sake of safety, I think you'd be much better off spending half of that on tire warmers, some nice track tires and dialing in your suspension (if you haven't already done so). When I first started doing track days, I crashed my brains out multiple times a year because I was on street tires that were unforgiving of my many mistakes. I have the scars and beat-up helmets to prove it. As I learned to ride better/faster/safer/smoother, the street tires were fine, but I wish I had more margin of error starting out. Big mistakes are pretty rare for me these days, but I still enjoy the cushion that Pirelli race tires give me. They have so much grip and give so much feedback that I haven't had a traction-related crash on them in the last 7 years of track riding and racing.
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post #3 of 23 Old 02-15-17, 19:11 Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MGFChapin View Post
Have you been tuning your bike with TuneECU? Adding traction control to your bike won't be terribly cheap or simple, but the simplest way would probably be with a Bazzaz unit. You'd first need their fuel control module at $350, so that would effectively replace TuneECU. Then you'd need their traction control add-on at $860.
Are you sure I can't get their traction control to function without their fuel module? (and yes, I have used TuneECU to make some minor alterations to my bike and I intend to do so even more in the future.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by MGFChapin View Post
If you're willing to spend over $1200 for the sake of safety, I think you'd be much better off spending half of that on tire warmers, some nice track tires and dialing in your suspension (if you haven't already done so). When I first started doing track days, I crashed my brains out multiple times a year because I was on street tires that were unforgiving of my many mistakes. I have the scars and beat-up helmets to prove it. As I learned to ride better/faster/safer/smoother, the street tires were fine, but I wish I had more margin of error starting out. Big mistakes are pretty rare for me these days, but I still enjoy the cushion that Pirelli race tires give me. They have so much grip and give so much feedback that I haven't had a traction-related crash on them in the last 7 years of track riding and racing.
Thanks for this advice and sharing your experience. I would never suspect that race tyres, optimized for traction as they are would offer ample feedback as you say. Good to know. The thing is my bike is a mule for everything: Commuting, b-road-thrashing, journeying and track-daying, the last of which is the most infrequent of all. So, having race tyres would be a complete no-no for the street and I simply can not afford the facility of changing tyres/wheels whenever I am to hit the track and back. I don't even have a garage - I only rent some space in a generic indoors parking lot to keep my bike at. So race tyres & warmers for 3-4 trackdays a year don't make much sense for me.

I simply love this bike and I oftentimes long for the excitement of track riding and I intend to keep it for years so the investment on a traction control kind of makes sense at this point because my knee has a way of reminding me that unless I get some safety cushion I better forget about truly enjoying myself on a track.

"I've seen things you people wouldn't believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I watched their c-beams glitter in the dark near the Tannhauser Gate. All those moments will be lost in time... like... tears in rain. Time to die."

Roy Batty, Blade Runner.
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post #4 of 23 Old 02-15-17, 19:49
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Pretty sure the traction control module sends input to the fuel module so it knows to cut power, and by how much.

You could always change the wheels/tires at the track. You'll recoup most of your investment if you buy used wheels at a decent price since they always seem to be in demand.
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post #5 of 23 Old 02-15-17, 20:26
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Yeah Bazzaz's TC requires the fuel module and now that I read further into it, the quick shifter may be required too.

Needing your bike to pull double duty on street & track throws a wrench in the cogs, doesn't it? As beatle suggested, you could get a second set of wheels for track only.

You could get variable temperature warmers, such as Woodcraft or Chickenhawks, and run them on the low setting for street tires. You won't have the outright grip of race tires, but at least you'll avoid cold tire crashes, which in my experience are the most common.
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post #6 of 23 Old 02-16-17, 00:23
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Also consider getting a good dyno tune if you haven't yet. This can give you a lot better throttle control. But I agree 100% with MGF. Tire warmers and real tires!!! Beyond that go get a dirt bike and learn how to slide a bike.
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post #7 of 23 Old 02-16-17, 07:10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Plasmablaster View Post
The thing is my bike is a mule for everything: Commuting, b-road-thrashing, journeying and track-daying, the last of which is the most infrequent of all. So, having race tyres would be a complete no-no for the street and I simply can not afford the facility of changing tyres/wheels whenever I am to hit the track and back. I don't even have a garage - I only rent some space in a generic indoors parking lot to keep my bike at. So race tyres & warmers for 3-4 trackdays a year don't make much sense for me.
You don't need traction control....often it is a crutch and hindrance to learning some proper riding techniques (IMO for newer track riders)(especially on a track) and gives that false sense of security. That being said I only do 4-6 track days a year....and have tire warmers. Tire warmers will last for years if properly stored and turned off when not in use. They don't take up much space so store them at home. "Race tires" are not necessary. To be more specific race "slicks" are not necessary. Pirelli SuperCorsa SP's are a good balance for street AND track with short life and the Pirelli Rosso Corso III's will give you plenty of grip for the track and street with a decent amount of longevity.

All that being said it sounds like you ham-fisted the throttle coming out of a corner on cold tires (if you high-side on a warm-up lap thats usually the cause...LOL). That points to a user issue and not an equipment issue. I have basically hammered the throttle out of many turns on the track (on warm Pirelli tires) with nary a hint of a high-side (although Dunlop Q3's will start to drift a bit when super, super hot) from 2nd gear on up.

Oh btw what tires are you on now? I didn't see that posted.
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post #8 of 23 Old 02-16-17, 08:51
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Take any money you want to throw at an aftermarket traction control system and put it into one on one training with a coach. Your problem is more than likely throttle control. Cold tires might be the reason you got caught out in this particular instance but it seems like you might be in the habit of doing something you shouldn't be doing in the first place. Slapping a TC bandaid on that might make you feel better but it's not going to help you become a safer, faster rider and that's the real goal right? One on one coaching will do FAR more to make you safer out on the track and on the road than any aftermarket TC system would.

It sounds like you're still in the relatively new track day phase where most riders believe you go faster by rollin on more aggressively/quickly. You don't. The legitimately fast guys are rolling on a lot earlier and that gives them the space/time to do it a lot more gradually. In this way they can get to WOT sooner while asking less of their tires than someone that waits to roll on abruptly and all at once.

P.S. TC can only "close the throttle for you" on a bike with a RBW throttle/electronically controlled throttle bodies. The aftermarket systems also tend to use RPM as their primary input vs monitoring wheel speed differential like previous gen OEM systems or combining that wheel speed input with IMU input on a current gen OEM system. In general aftermarket systems are generally going to be a lot less sophisticated/effective.

Last edited by BTrain5489; 02-16-17 at 09:34.
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post #9 of 23 Old 02-16-17, 09:41 Thread Starter
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Guys thank you all for your input.

Some remarks that answer many issues raised here:

1. I've always been careful with throttle opening out of a turn. Learned it because I learned riding on a wallowing & bouncy-bouncy Honda AX-1 250cc (2000-2004). Impossible to ride with abrupt throttle/brake input. 4 years riding that thing hard-wired smooth inputs into my brain. And I've been trackdaying an SV650 since 2006. The SV650 was however much friendlier in many regards in relation to the ST-R and I never had a highside with it.

2. The highside occurred under hardly any throttle at all. I had simply "cracked" it slightly open as any rider should after turn-in is finished. You can actually check it out here. The hard acceleration of the back wheel as the back steps out is not due to too much throttle... it is due to non-existent traction.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jc3j4ee0KQY
(sorry for the greek captions)

So indeed, the tyres hadn't warmed-up properly (and being Dunlop SportSmarts were very bad while cold) and that black-looking pothole didn't do any good either, nor the hard as hell rear suspension. I've remedied the shock (found a good iteration of a Daytona shock, revalved it, and installed my own version of Flux II plates), I've remedied the tyres (Metzeler Sportec M7s now which offer way higher grip when cold). But: I just don't want to be wimping-out out of every turn.

So my question still stands: Anyone out there installed TC?

"I've seen things you people wouldn't believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I watched their c-beams glitter in the dark near the Tannhauser Gate. All those moments will be lost in time... like... tears in rain. Time to die."

Roy Batty, Blade Runner.
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post #10 of 23 Old 02-16-17, 13:19 Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MacBandit View Post
Also consider getting a good dyno tune if you haven't yet. This can give you a lot better throttle control. But I agree 100% with MGF. Tire warmers and real tires!!! Beyond that go get a dirt bike and learn how to slide a bike.
This is sound advice but there are no real tuners around here: their dyno machines don't have brakes and thus no fine tuning on specific throttle openings can be done. The very concept of a "dyno" around here is mostly about full power for drag 4-strokes and race 2-strokes with carburettors...

"I've seen things you people wouldn't believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I watched their c-beams glitter in the dark near the Tannhauser Gate. All those moments will be lost in time... like... tears in rain. Time to die."

Roy Batty, Blade Runner.
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