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In talking about the 'best' way to deal with gravel we have lots of great idea's.



It seems fast will allow us to float. As a novice, I agree



It seems slow will minimize the 'damage' should we fall. As a novice, I agree again.



One thing I have noticed on many gravel roads. Seems there can be deep holes, big rocks, on-comming (fast) bikes. Simply put, lots of issues can lay ahead. If you are not skilled enough to deal with these issues at speed, then in my opinion, it would be silly to "try to float on gravel". There is alot more issues to deal with.



I would suspect that Ben can tell us exactly what the force of impact would be should the face of a 190lb rider hit the rough trail surface a 42mph.



Not trying to be a "Dark cloud", but most trails that I have been on offer-up lots more than simply gravel. Last Sunday I came across a partially filled 18" hole on my gravel road. At 19mph, an optional path was easy to find. Just my opinion. Gerry

 

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12psi and a better front tire help a lot.


Having just put on a better front tire I wholeheartedly agree with qwerty ! The stock front tire is horrible on the gravel. Not going too fast and staying loose are the main reasons I never went down.
 

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Since my crash on a gravel road I've tried to analyze it to figure out what I did wrong. It happened so fast, it's tough to be 100% sure, but I'm thinking I probably used the front brake. Not very hard, but when the front wheel started to go sideways, I'm guessing I instinctively squeezed even harder, compounding the problem. My "lesson learned" is to completely keep my hand off that front brake when riding on gravel. If I have to slow down and simply easing off the throttle isn't enough, I might try a little rear brake. If the rear slides it's much easier to recover from a rear wheel skid that a front wheel skid, especially on gravel.



I was taught that the front brake has far more braking power than does the rear, and that's true... but... When you use the front brake your weight shifts forward. Get that front wheel ever so slightly out of alignment, then compound that with a weight shift forward and... you're probably going down. I've got the scars to prove it.
 
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