wheelies - balance point

i’ll admit i’ve had trouble getting it up in the past :stuck_out_tongue: but i’ve started to practice clutch wheelies recently with varying success (all on a private closed road of course).

been watching stuff on the net to get an idea of this, that, and the other but something i can’t find reference to is what the ideal angle of elevation is for the balance point. i’d guess the balance point could vary depending on how much power is being fed to the rear wheel but there must be a broad range it fits in to? also is there a danger point - like if you get past 80 degrees you’ll flip it…?

guess it’s a question for the stunters on here but bear in mind i’m talking about a newbie doing sit-downs, rather than the more experienced of you doing stand-ups etc :cool:

cheers :slight_smile:

adam h or nick storm should be able to answer this for you… i still can’t wheelie :frowning:

Is this what the wheelie machine is meant to help you practice? Does it still appear at the Ace?

this ↑

it still comes up once in a while, seen it there, it’s sparky’s machine, isn’t it?

Though I admit I did try it out a bit here/there on non-private roads, but I didn’t want to over do it, so I got the bike up maybe 20 inch or something :Whistling:

I still sometimes fear that if I pull it off correctly I’ll just flip myself knowing me :w00t:

do they ‘come here often’ or do you think i should PM them? cheers by the way…

Looks like Max’s balance point is behind the vertical :w00t: :w00t:


:w00t: yep, that’s precisely what i’m trying to avoid! brown-panter or what!

As I understand it physics wise the balance point is where the centre of gravity of the bike is directly above the tyres contact patch on the road. This is different for differnet bikes. I think you should book a day at a wheelie school if you really want to crack it. That’s a low consequence environment.

Balance point = you behind the back wheel, as the front wheel and engine etc is counterbalance to your body weight…all I can say if you’ve got bigger balls/less sense/more money for a new bike than me if you get that far without closing the throttle!

You can change BP by standing up though…


yep, wise words indeed. what you’ve said makes perfect sense too. totally appreciate it’s different under many conditions but i was thinking there must be a ‘balance band’ where it’s likely to be found though, say 45-70 degrees. then anything over 70 degrees starts getting a bit pant-browning…

Hi… So there’s usually 2 different balance points that get talked about:

‘true’ balance point is where the bike maintains the wheelie at a constant speed, no acceleration to keep it up. This balance point shifts with speed. If you’re going 10mph it’s probably at about 70 degree’s from the floor. If you’r doing 100mph it’ll be more like 45 degrees (ish) It’s mostly cos of wind, science and magic.

There’s another balance point that get’s banded round that basically means having just enough power to ‘chase the revs’ and keep the front wheel lifted whether it be in one gear or going through the box. The angle here is lower than ‘true’ balance point and is basically any where above where the bike doesn’t have enough power to hold the front up… and cos you;'re accelerating the amount of power available to you changes as you go. To much to think about or do maths no, it’s easier to feel it. As you lift the front up, there will be the bit after the initial ‘struggle’ to lift (assuming it’s a slow controlled lift, not violent)… where the bike goes lighter and the height is easier to maintain.

The only danger point is the tarmac :wink: You will have needed to have used the rear brake/ roll off the throttle before then.

nice one nick, thank you. as you say i guess it’s something best left to ‘feel’ rather than overintellectualize. i’m doing clutch-ups at the mo so the front’s coming up pretty quick (by my standards) and i’m still in the **** yourself stage! guess i was trying to get an idea of when too much is too much without finding out the hard way.

your school sounds great by the way, i may well get myself down to you at some point :slight_smile:

my biggest brown-point moment so far is rather when ye come down that I don’t accidentally pull the the front wheel left/right or let go of the handle bar :blink:

what nick said!!! :wink: :slight_smile:

i’m no expert at pulling minging wheelies miles down the road at 100mph…but never been a fan of clutching it up except on a dirt bike.as for positioning on the bike i found that stand up’s were actually easier to control and hold for longer distances,usually in 3rd off the power and starting about 40/50 mph upto around 70 before hitting the redline…you’ll know when your getting there when you can see the front wheel stop spinning:satisfied:

:slight_smile: yeah it’s pretty much time in the saddle… I’d recommend practising using the rear brake (whilst wheelying) early on in the learning process so that if you do go to far it’s not such a weird request for your brain to make :wink:

thanks for all your feedback fellas.

nick, can you rely on the clutch to get you back down or is the back brake more effective?

If you’re mid flip pulling the clutch in is only going to make the crash quicker as there’s no engine braking at all trying to pull the front down (against the momentum and wind)

back brake all the way. If it’s relatively controlled and just gone past BP (balance point) then a lil drag/bad on the brake will suffice, but if it’s bye bye bike time slam it on, grip like there’s no tomorrow with your knees cos it’ll slam the front down hard (if pos as u land let brake off and feed back on throttle)

cool cheers nick, grand advice. will see how i get on but will be taking baby steps for a while yet! :slight_smile: