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Early ABS (ABS2) owners. Is it just me?

When the system kicks in, can you feel the rear solenoid displacing some of the pressure within the system. And does it feel like it sacrifices some stopping distance to reduce wheel lockup? I'm thinking of removing mine. The whole turkey-n-deer thing has got me thinking how much I don't care for the system. I haven't had any other emergency stops on the non-ABS '99, but I find myself hesitating to cramp on the ABS brakes because of this feeling.

Old 06-18-2007, 07:45 PM
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...have the same thing and then some, Chris... had planned an ABSectomy... but something happened that will keep me from doing any personal projects for a while, it seems... I'll email you.

My front brake is rather spongy and the rear is just plain weird... the BCR had all braided lines but the front line was to short (my handlebars are above the TC)... found what I needed for a very low price... but it will have to wait a while..

But, ABSectomy is in the future... it's really not that complicated... just a lot of work and the only issue is the re-wiring of the brake lights.... they are wired through the ABS Pump... but that's not to complicated either.
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Old 06-18-2007, 08:12 PM
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Old 06-18-2007, 08:21 PM
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Re: Early ABS (ABS2) owners. Is it just me?

Quote:
Originally posted by Sideshow_S
And does it feel like it sacrifices some stopping distance to reduce wheel lockup?
Well, without repeated controlled circumstances, it's really pretty tough to say whether you would have stopped quicker without it. If the ABS is kicking in, then you are, by definition, at the limit of available traction which means w/o ABS, the wheel would be skidding and skidding which also lengthens stops. To you, it feels ike the ABS is causing longer stops, but the system is just compensating for a lack of traction that would also lengthen your stops.

That's not to say ABS is perfect. There are some "corner of the envelope" conditions where some riders may beat it some of the time. And there are some riders who think the slow cycle time of early BMW ABS systems can cause a latency that releases the brakes way too aggressively and for too long. These riders complain of the bike "freewheeling" into a bumpy corner. I've got 45K on my 99 ABS system and have never noted this much, but then I don't do a whole lot of threshold braking into bumpy corners, which seems like a good way to increase your chances of ER visits dramatically.

I think there are some good reasons to ditch the ABS: Don't want to spend half the bike's value to replace an ABS pump, weight, simplicity, and better brake feel. Note that "shorter stops" is not on this list.

If the sound/feel of the ABS system is making you hesitant to use the full power of the brakes, you need to get over this or certainly get rid of the ABS. The whole reason to have ABS is to handle those situations where you don't want to pussy-foot around feeling for available traction - you just want to stop NOW as quickly as you can. So you grab everything and let the electronics sort out the traction. I practice all-out, both ends ABS'ing stops at least every month or two because when that car makes that left turn in front of me, or the deer pops out of the woods, I want my reaction to be brake HARD and brake NOW.

If you have a nice ABS bike, I'd encourage you to sell it and buy a non-ABS bike. I think you'd come out money ahead, and I expect you'd have trouble selling your "stripped" bike later - many buyers are going to hesitate when looking at a bike that has had this level of surgery.

- Mark

Last edited by markjenn; 06-18-2007 at 09:43 PM..
Old 06-18-2007, 09:34 PM
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..that is, if you plan on selling it at some point in time, Mark.

...also, my ABS activates inn situations where I can GUARANTEE you that there was plenty of traction available at the front wheel!... I personally have only once in my life managed to lock the front wheel on a motorcycle... and that was NOT on dry street! (I am not talking dirt bike here)

ABSectomy is not a complicated or deep surgery if you leave the peripheral hardware (rings, sensors) in place... you can always put the pump back in...

I do agree with your sentiment of selling the bike and buying a Sideshow's favor here....
A) Bike values in general are declining rapidly,, it seems...
B) Chris has a bike without "animal proximity sensor" and as such, has had a couple of close encounters of the third kind in the past 2 months which has basically brought his bike to a value point at which he more or less HAS to keep it.... or else take the biggest hit there is.

I have "practiced braking real hard" with my ABS and I do NOT like the results... the rear brake is locking-releasing-locking etc. and the front is soft and mushy... just not for me, I guess.
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Old 06-19-2007, 12:31 AM
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front brake mushy is likely indicitative of air somewhere in the system, not an ABS issue.
ABS engaging is not necessarily indicative of loosing traction, but of over-application of brakes (wheel has temporarily stopped turning). ABS knows NOTHING about traction- it only knows about a wheel rolling, or not. but in low/no traction conditions, a wheel is more likely to stop rolling when the brakes are applied, so that's why it kicks in.
try easing into the brakes first, then progressively applying more and more pressure. I practice hard stops on a regular basis, and I know i did a good job if i can keep ABS from engaging- but that's not always an easy thing.
the slow cycling rates were an issue in ABS I, circa early 1990's. Not generally considered to be a problem with ABS II or III.
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Old 06-19-2007, 09:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by bikerfish1100
ABS engaging is not necessarily indicative of loosing traction, but of over-application of brakes (wheel has temporarily stopped turning).
Don't want to get into a semantic debate, but when a wheel has temporarily stopped turning, it has BY DEFINITION lost traction.

- Mark
Old 06-19-2007, 10:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by markjenn
Don't want to get into a semantic debate, but when a wheel has temporarily stopped turning, it has BY DEFINITION lost traction.

- Mark
well, unless you have come to a temporary standstill at a stopsign or traffic light, Mark!
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Old 06-19-2007, 11:07 AM
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...I gotta agree with markjs's comment...it took a while for me to get use to ABS, especially when I'd expect to control-skid up to a stopsign and find the bike moving beyond my stop mark.
Now I find myself going full-binders with a different pint of view.
I surely wouldn't trash an ABS system unless it was on a project bike I didn't care to re-sell.
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Old 06-19-2007, 12:10 PM
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Ditto on Markjenn...

I am comfortable with the ABS too...especially after last year when I was midway through strafing a corner on Sun Foundation Rd and realized I couldn't make it all the way through. A split-second decision allowed me to take a tangent gravel road off the curve and then use the ABS to get stopped quickly and undramatically in the gravel. My riding Buddy following me on his Buell didn't make the same slpit-second decision and ran off into the weeds...pride bruised and handlebars bent.



I once had an '86 FJ1200 with very powerful front binders. Just for fun, and to spook my riding buddies, I would momentarily lock up the front wheel while cruising on a straight highway...the tire chirping was the give away that traction was totally lost. I did it by quickly pulling on the front lever with all my strength and then just as quickly letting go of it. It happened so fast that there was no feeling that the 16" front wheel was going to fold under and drop me right then and there. The front tire used then was an ME33 Lazer.
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Last edited by R111S; 06-19-2007 at 07:02 PM..
Old 06-19-2007, 06:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Rapid Dog
... full-binders with a different pint of view.
If you are using a pint with your view and full-binders then ABS is a good idea.

RB
Old 06-20-2007, 12:42 AM
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Re: Early ABS (ABS2) owners. Is it just me?

Quote:
Originally posted by Sideshow_S
When the system kicks in, can you feel the rear solenoid displacing some of the pressure within the system. And does it feel like it sacrifices some stopping distance to reduce wheel lockup? I'm thinking of removing mine. The whole turkey-n-deer thing has got me thinking how much I don't care for the system. I haven't had any other emergency stops on the non-ABS '99, but I find myself hesitating to cramp on the ABS brakes because of this feeling.
yes my '99 does that,so Ive learned to modulate the pressure to threpoint just before it kicks in/ Then if I need it. i mash down t opactivate it. yes it can lrgthen your stops when it kiks inn fdully,but properly modulated you can make it serve you. Sorry for hte typing but my meds have kicked in, gnight johnboy
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Old 06-25-2007, 07:01 PM
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Since the deer accident, the ABS lights have been lighting off like a railroad crossing sign. The fault is tripped for the dealer reset, which I found the home-style fix for on here. I have put on 3K since the accident, and have been enjoying the ABS-less system. Right now, the fix is done with a 1.25" piece of electrical tape over the lights on the dash. Not sure if I care to change that because I have no reluctant grip on the brakes.

At the same time, I've been getting some feedback that I used to think was the ABS system, which obviously is not. It may be the pads, but I get a chattering feel pretty often. Not always, but often. So maybe if I just get new pads, or swap pads' sides, I may have a better feel on the system. Or not. I really just don't like the feeling of slipping farther down the road due to the system doing its thing. I know what's happening, and I know it's fine, but it just doesn't feel right.
Old 06-25-2007, 07:20 PM
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And FWIW, I did have a lock-up last weekend when a car without brakelights was turning off of the path in front of me. Without the ABS, I had the front jameed on good, and locked up the rear, had the bike do a sweet little tail wave, and was fine. It felt like a good solid stop without the garbage. ABS just isn't for me.
Old 06-25-2007, 07:24 PM
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can you use a meter and find out what the frequency of the light is? that will tell you what the fault is(at least on my '04).
Old 06-25-2007, 07:31 PM
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Oh, I thought it was just the you-crashed-so-the-light-is-on flashing (substantial wheel spin mismatch) that requires the dealer reset. I think the iABS you have is different than the earlier ABS2, but I could be wrong.
Old 06-25-2007, 07:41 PM
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its definately a "this light is flashing because there is a fault somewhere" that will be read by the dealer, problem repaired at your expense, and reset to turn off the light. my ABS is different from yours, but maybe the fault codes are the same. theres a sticker under my seat that details the fault frequencies. if you want, I can run out and take a pic.

Old 06-25-2007, 07:49 PM
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