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I just started racing my 125sx and I keep killing the engine at least a couple times each lap. I use both the front and back brakes before I enter a turn but I seem to be using the back brake more and will often lock it up completely. Should I be pulling in the clutch completely or adjust the back brake lever so I'm not locking it up so easily.

I'm not sure what technique I should be using??

1. hit both brakes hard and pull in the clutch or

2. mainly use the front brake while lightly pressing the back brake and don't pull the clutch?

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I had to adjust the clutch lever on my 125SX so when I pulled it in, the clutch was completely disengaged. Then I also get off the rear brake much earlier and back on the throttle to keep some sense of momentum.

Honestly, you wanna not use the rear brake very much, focus more on the front brake and braking less. On 2 strokes, especially 125's you wanna carry the corner speed, that is the goal.

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for me i only use the rear brake for directional purposes, or if i'm about to fly off the track and need to stop in a serioius hurry. I use the front brake most, if not all, the time and only use the back brack to direct my back end around corners. I try to carry as much speed as possible through the corners so i don't have to engage the clutch very much. the only time i'll fully engage the clutch is when i come to a tight 180 turn. But, like most things in motocross, it's all a matter of preferance. rule of thumb is to use at least 70%-75% front brake, and the back the remaining percentage if at all.

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it takes a lot of time to get a feel for the back break, you know you found the sweet spot when you break hard enough that you can feel the back end start to slight, but you aren't breaking so hard it locks up, it's just rotating slower the the ground underneath is passing.

Edited by Die_trying

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I agree with TYE, hardly any back brake and minimal front brake on a 125. It's better to be smooth and carry speed then to do the stop-n-go on our bikes. I'd rather see you go slower into the corner and carry the speed into an explosive exit then to haul ass into the corner and have to hit the brakes hard, turn, and try and dig your way out. Practice both while someone times your laps and see which is faster. Even if you weren't stalling the engine, our bikes don't have enough power or grip to do the stop-n-go routine that the 250F and 450F's are doing all the time.

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p.s. it's also why the 125 riders generally become faster riders on any bike...we learn how to turn because it's required on our bikes and we know how to use the clutch to make us faster.

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Just go faster! Don't hit the brakes and you won't stall. :smirk:

But seriously, to get any drive in turns with a 125, you have to carry speed ALL the way around the turn, and don't lock up the brakes unless it is a hairpin turn.

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I just started racing my 125sx and I keep killing the engine at least a couple times each lap. I use both the front and back brakes before I enter a turn but I seem to be using the back brake more and will often lock it up completely. Should I be pulling in the clutch completely or adjust the back brake lever so I'm not locking it up so easily.

I'm not sure what technique I should be using??

1. hit both brakes hard and pull in the clutch or

2. mainly use the front brake while lightly pressing the back brake and don't pull the clutch?

Try not to lock up the rear when breaking hard. If you require some extra stopping power, add some front brake (be gentle, or you're going for a trip over the handle bars). When I'm using my rear brake, I pull the clutch in a bit if needed, depending how hot I'm going into the corner I also use a bit of front brake. Each situation may be different. Once you get used to of the track, you will have an idea what you need to do. Experience also plays a key part in knowing proper breaking control.

Gary Semics has a great video on brake control. I would highly recommend watching that. You can find it here

Good luck.

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You should be braking as hard as possible with the front. Don't pull the clutch in unless you are going to stall. You can brake harder without locking your wheel if the clutch is out. The back brake doesn't do a whole lot to slow you down but it makes a big difference keeping the chassis settled. Don't ask me how the physics work, but it does. But the majority of your stopping power is in the front.

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You should be braking as hard as possible with the front. Don't pull the clutch in unless you are going to stall. You can brake harder without locking your wheel if the clutch is out. The back brake doesn't do a whole lot to slow you down but it makes a big difference keeping the chassis settled[/u]. Don't ask me how the physics work, but it does. But the majority of your stopping power is in the front.

:smirk:

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I agree with TYE, hardly any back brake and minimal front brake on a 125. It's better to be smooth and carry speed then to do the stop-n-go on our bikes. I'd rather see you go slower into the corner and carry the speed into an explosive exit then to haul ass into the corner and have to hit the brakes hard, turn, and try and dig your way out. Practice both while someone times your laps and see which is faster. Even if you weren't stalling the engine, our bikes don't have enough power or grip to do the stop-n-go routine that the 250F and 450F's are doing all the time.

Thats called coasting and it doesn't lower lap times

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I had to adjust the clutch lever on my 125SX so when I pulled it in, the clutch was completely disengaged. Then I also get off the rear brake much earlier and back on the throttle to keep some sense of momentum.

Honestly, you wanna not use the rear brake very much, focus more on the front brake and braking less. On 2 strokes, especially 125's you wanna carry the corner speed, that is the goal.

Honestly, that is bad advice. Braking with the clutch in and without the rear causes the suspension to unsettle. The goal is most situations is to brake as late into the corner as possible. While still maintaining the smoothest arc and fastest exit possible. This sometimes means starting the braking process early in a corner (still clutch-out and very hard with both brakes) so that you are on the gas at the entrance, apex and the of course the exit.

Braking less doesn't really make much sense. Braking later and harder for the shortest period of time would be a better way of getting across what I hope is your point.

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Braking with the clutch in and without the rear causes the suspension to unsettle.

I never said you want to brake in the corner with the clutch held in. I said that I adjusted my clutch so when I use the rear brake (which is not all the time), I can pull in the clutch so the motor doesn't stall. As you probably know, KTM rear brakes are extremely temperamental and they lock up at the slightest wave of your foot over the lever. I have yet to find a solution, besides using shit brake pads and I hate to do that. So I learned how to ride the bike using the rear brake as a directional tool and using the clutch. It doesn't disrupt my speed at all since I'm on the clutch going into the corner, that means I'm already on the clutch exiting the corner to build drive. If you arn't using the clutch on a 125 on the exit to build drive, you're going slow.

The goal is most situations is to brake as late into the corner as possible.

Correct, you want to brake for as little time as possible, making your braking zone very short and allowing your speed building zone to increase.

Braking less doesn't really make much sense. Braking later and harder for the shortest period of time would be a better way of getting across what I hope is your point.

I were kinda stuck on translation here. To me everything revolves around time, as your lap time is the only important part. So braking "less" refers to time, not using the brake lever at half its potential or something. What else would "less" refer to? :shrug:

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Yes, actually you are telling people to brake with clutch in or only use the front brake....

I'm pretty sure KTM didn't design the rear brake as only a directional tool. The best possible breaking is using the front and rear with the clutch out. If you are having trouble stalling the engine when using the rear brake there are methods to practice the proper technique. Try Gary's videos.

A 125 shouldn't be sliding the rear end around much at all with the rear brake. The bike has very little momentum while sliding with the wheel locked.

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Yes, actually you are telling people to brake with clutch in or only use the front brake....

Sorry, I don't see it that way. This will be the 2nd time I will say that your misreading what I'm saying.

The best possible breaking is using the front and rear with the clutch out. If you are having trouble stalling the engine when using the rear brake there are methods to practice the proper technique.

Says who? The amazing Gary?

Personally, the only way through a corner is the fastest way. I don't care if you completely lock up the rear end, power slide the back around, the whole time slipping the clutch to generate speed, whatever is the quickest way around a corner IS just that, the quickest way. You can't say there is only one quick way around a corner on every track in the world, in every situation, its just impossible.

A 125 shouldn't be sliding the rear end around much at all with the rear brake.

Says who? I've watched supercross, they've been using that technique forever and still do.

The bike has very little momentum while sliding with the wheel locked.

Yep, but at least its a light switch, rear brake, slide, throttle. Its a VERY quick way of changing your line mid corner to A) get around someone on the outside line using a more inside line on exit, :smirk: get around bumps on the standard line, C) If you screw up the corner and need to square it off.

Again, I'm not saying or condoning that you do it EVERY CORNER, or even once in the day. My whole point has been simple; it is a technique that should be recognized.

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Actually Gary is pretty amazing. Ask around...

Anyway, the original question was whether or not someone who was having problems stalling the engine while braking should pull in the clutch while braking or learn to modulate the rear and leave the clutch out.

The correct braking technique, used the vast majority of the time, is to brake with both and clutch out.

You responded by telling him to 1) hit both brakes hard and pull in the clutch.

I'm not sure how else to read "adjust your clutch so that it completely disengages...Then I also get off the rear brake much earlier and back on the throttle to keep some sense of momentum."

:smirk:

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Anyway, the original question was whether or not someone who was having problems stalling the engine while braking should pull in the clutch while braking or learn to modulate the rear and leave the clutch out.

There is nothing wrong with pulling in the clutch to help save a stall because on 125's, you need to be ON THE CLUTCH exiting the corner anyhow! So what's the difference with starting the clutch pull early?

I'm not saying its a good or bad technique, I'm not a judge of that. I'm saying its possible and it does work.

Furthermore (back on the subject of locking up your rear) on 4 strokes, when you close the throttle, the rear wheel is locked up. So what's the difference between locking up the rear purposely on a 2 stroke, then the rear wheel being locked on a 4 stroke? Honestly the only difference I can think of is the fact on a lil 125, you want to maintain as much speed as possible. But again, what if that "fast line" is completely unavailable and the "point and squirt" line is the ONLY LINE you can use?

I don't know the answer, I haven't spent enough time riding a 4 stroke to know the answer...

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The difference is right and wrong.

When the throttle of a fourstroke is closed the rear wheel is NOT locked up. The tire will continue to turn as long as there is enough forward momentum to keep the crank turning over. Maximum braking is NOT when the tire is skidding. This happens when you have the rear wheel locked up.

The original posters question was simple and I've already highlighted it twice. He was a beginner who is having trouble stalling his engine while braking. He just wanted confirmation that he should continue to try and learn to brake with the clutch-out.

P.S. - Sometimes I miss the days when TT had more relaxed moderators....

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When the throttle of a fourstroke is closed the rear wheel is NOT locked up. The tire will continue to turn as long as there is enough forward momentum to keep the crank turning over. Maximum braking is NOT when the tire is skidding. This happens when you have the rear wheel locked up.

Thats interesting, you might wanna tell most professional riders I see, that they are riding wrong. I have watched and analyzed the best riders in the US and in europe, from the sidelines, I see what they do, how they ride. Locking up the rear wheel is extremely common place.

Wether its WRONG or not is besides the point. As I said a few posts ago, whatever gets you around the corner in front of the other guy, is how you should ride.

You are right, in a theoretical perfect maximum braking situation, locking up either wheel is not a good idea. But sadly in motocross, perfect braking situations never happen. Ruts, braking bumps, and other riders get in the way and you've gotta adapt. On a perfect track, in ideal situations, anyone can gently drag the rear brake and slow the bike down, I don't even consider that a skill. You watch the "ex-professionals" teach you those skills on the DVD's and its a joke, re-producing them on beat-up, torn-up tracks is a different situation. The skill and technique that needs to be learned is determining how to deal with a corner and the braking technique for that exact moment. Part of that skill and technique is learning what its like to lock up the rear and use it as a directional tool.

Edited by tye1138

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Thats interesting, you might wanna tell most professional riders I see, that they are riding wrong. I have watched and analyzed the best riders in the US and in europe, from the sidelines, I see what they do, how they ride. Locking up the rear wheel is extremely common place.

Wether its WRONG or not is besides the point. As I said a few posts ago, whatever gets you around the corner in front of the other guy, is how you should ride.

You are right, in a theoretical perfect maximum braking situation, locking up either wheel is not a good idea. But sadly in motocross, perfect braking situations never happen. Ruts, braking bumps, and other riders get in the way and you've gotta adapt. On a perfect track, in ideal situations, anyone can gently drag the rear brake and slow the bike down, I don't even consider that a skill. You watch the "ex-professionals" teach you those skills on the DVD's and its a joke, re-producing them on beat-up, torn-up tracks is a different situation. The skill and technique that needs to be learned is determining how to deal with a corner and the braking technique for that exact moment. Part of that skill and technique is learning what its like to lock up the rear and use it as a directional tool.

Wow! Wondering if you actually believe what your saying tye... Or if you just had a heckuva night on the town. :smirk:

Grab me some more popcorn, sit back and watch the brawl...

(Wonder why nobody has told Gary Semics, and other 'ex-professionals' that tracks get beat up and tore up during moto's. Apparently they missed that small fact in their racing career? Or... maybe they just raced part of the first moto's when the tracks where smooth as highways..)

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