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Thread: Handlebar Tank Slap

  1. #1
    Kawa Afterthought weschmann's Avatar
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    Handlebar Tank Slap

    Has a anyone experienced severe tank slap while riding on gravel roads that turn into sand, going about 40 to 45 mph, with the 700 GS? I experienced severe tank slap three times during my ride on portions of the continental divide and am wondering if I just had my bike loaded incorrectly, ( I was traveling with a full load of touring equipment for three weeks of camping). Kind of has me a bit timid to tackle gravel roads at a decent speed now so I'm wondering if there is something I should be looking at on the bike other than packing it differently. I've already moved most of my pack lower with the purchase of decent soft side bags that gets all of my camping equipment other than the tent off the back seat. Only thing left on the back is my GIVI trunk box which only carries my laptop and cloths. Plus my Rotopax 1 gallon gas can, but will place that on the front somehow to move the weight around.... Thinking of upgrading my shocks and and front fork springs......

  2. #2
    Registered User gfspencer's Avatar
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    Loosen your grip and relax your elbows.
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  3. #3
    Registered User 36654's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by weschmann View Post
    Has a anyone experienced severe tank slap while riding on gravel roads that turn into sand, going about 40 to 45 mph, with the 700 GS? I experienced severe tank slap three times during my ride on portions of the continental divide and am wondering if I just had my bike loaded incorrectly, ( I was traveling with a full load of touring equipment for three weeks of camping). Kind of has me a bit timid to tackle gravel roads at a decent speed now so I'm wondering if there is something I should be looking at on the bike other than packing it differently. I've already moved most of my pack lower with the purchase of decent soft side bags that gets all of my camping equipment other than the tent off the back seat. Only thing left on the back is my GIVI trunk box which only carries my laptop and cloths. Plus my Rotopax 1 gallon gas can, but will place that on the front somehow to move the weight around.... Thinking of upgrading my shocks and and front fork springs......
    You mean your groin hitting the tank?

    Have you tried standing on the pegs to shift the weight distribution?
    Cave contents: 16 R12RS, 13 Toyota Tacoma, 03 Simplicity Legacy, 97 Stihl FS75, Dewalt DW625 & SawStop PCS175

  4. #4
    I might not understand completely, but I would interpret what you describe as tank slap as what I would call the front wheel wallowing in the sand. Congratulations for not going down. You did something right.

    I am a horrible sand rider. I hate it. I go really slow. But the big dogs will probably tell you to stand up on the pegs and add power. I am a coward and have trouble doing this but I don't doubt this is the proper thing to do.
    Paul Glaves - "Big Bend", Texas U.S.A
    "The greatest challenge to any thinker is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution." - Bertrand Russell
    http://web.bigbend.net/~glaves/

  5. #5
    Kawa Afterthought weschmann's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PGlaves View Post
    I might not understand completely, but I would interpret what you describe as tank slap as what I would call the front wheel wallowing in the sand. Congratulations for not going down. You did something right.

    I am a horrible sand rider. I hate it. I go really slow. But the big dogs will probably tell you to stand up on the pegs and add power. I am a coward and have trouble doing this but I don't doubt this is the proper thing to do.
    Thanks for understanding Paul.... In fact, I did end up slowing down to about 30MPH after the third incident where the sand was hard to see before finding myself in trouble. Maybe I described my issue in the wrong manner. I was following a 1200GSA BMW rider who didn't seem to experience the same issues that I did. To clarify, I was standing, weight forward a bit on the pegs, did not slam myself into the tank or anything of that sort. I managed to get the wheel wallowing in the sand to straighten out by feathering the clutch in and out while keeping the real wheel engaged to bring her back in line, but really expected to do face plants in each occasion. This technique is one that I learned (kind of) at my last off road training session, but not to the degree of instability that I found while hitting stretches of sand on a gravel road on the Continental Divide this summer. Anyway, just looking for some constructive advice on what to check out on the bike in addition to increasing my experience level.....

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