Author Topic: Trike on two wheels and braking.  (Read 533 times)


  • No Longer a western province of Númenor
Trike on two wheels and braking.
« on: June 01, 2011, 07:48:09 pm »
Following my off this morning, I got to thinking about what I *should* have done.

In a related discussion during the day I expressed the opinion that if I'd braked while up on two wheels, it would have thrown me right off. However, I tried braking on the outside wheel while cornering on the way home (while firmly on three wheels) and the impression I got was the weight is thrown forwards, and inwards, which would suggest that a handfull of brake lever may well have saved me some skin.

Anyone got a definitive answer to save me some potentially dangerous experimentation in the car park at the weekend?  :D


  • High Priestess of wires
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Re: Trike on two wheels and braking.
« Reply #1 on: June 01, 2011, 10:09:41 pm »
Up on two wheels throws you off the curve at a tangent, and IME braking drops the wheel back down fast, but you may not make the corner as originally planned.  I've done a similar thing at a set of lights, where turning left I was too fast on an off camber,  (I was turning to go uphill, so the right hand side was already down) and slapped the ground on the outside of the curve to try and push me back the other way.  It worked enough to stay upright, but this was at low speed - just a bit too fast for the off camber.  I wouldn't recommend it as a method.

I have braked whilst up on two wheels after jinking the steering - a quick kick to the left and then hit the brakes.  This allowed me to bail out at high speed, and avoid hitting the pillock who'd just pulled out of a side road across my bows.  It was deliberate: It was that, the side of a people-carrier, or take on the head-on traffic.  I received a severe lesson on Conservation of Momentum, but survived with no major injury to self or trike.  I do not recommend this method either, but it showed me the difference between the two.  Basically there's a critical tipping point and speed, and below that point you'll simply drop back down onto three wheels.  Above that point and speed, you'll get dumped.  The angle and speed will vary depending upon circumstances, but I'd guess that rather like a helicopter, there's an envelope for each type of trike, and as long as you fly within it, you'll keep your landings equal to the number of take-offs.  Or something.

Sounds like a job for a grassy field and some body armour...   ;D
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