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Thread: Biking - a 6 sigma affair

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    Rookie captainravee's Avatar
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    Default Biking - a 6 sigma affair

    BIKING – A 6 SIGMA AFFAIR

    Manan gave a very candid description of our recent trip to Binsar with marvelous pictures taken by Sunny.

    This visit which is my third with XBHP and 7th in total, I observed the whole operation of biking very minutely. While leaving Delhi, the tempo and start up thrill was very different and one is a in a very different frame of mind thinking about the whole journey ahead. There is a different feeling inside oneself and one tries to leave Delhi quickly in order to get out of the rut. Simultaneously, as soon as one gets open roads one craves to zip and a bit of competitive spirit also generates. Now, all this put together becomes quite challenging for the biker and increases the risk as well.

    Driving swiftly, maneouvering the bike, braking, taking care of fellow biker who is either towing the line or trying to overtake, observing the surrounding vehicles who again get threatened by the biker’s presence, all together makes biking quite a challenging sport wherein there are almost nil chances for errors so far as safety is concerned that’s the reason I have termed this article as “ Biking – A 6 Sigma Affair”.

    6 Sigma is nothing but a Japanese Business Jargon which many of you may be knowing and is related to quality deliverables in any process. It basically outlines 2-3 errors in one million operations if I am not wrong. Operation means any action e.g. Starting the bike is one operation, taking off the stand, pick up, overtaking, braking, taking a turn – Each of this activity may be called an operation. I would say that biking is more than a 6 Sigma affair since it may not permit even 1 error in 1 million operation since that one error could be fatal to the biker.

    We picked up well from Delhi, then had to byepass Garh Mukteshwar due to a jam and then traveling through general Rudrapur on bumpy road and then reaching the foothills of Nainital to start riding on hilly road took all of us from various experiences and each experience of driving on a two way highway, single bumpy road, hilly road and then along the riverside while accessing Binar wherein we were driving at around 120 KMPH and that too after driving around 10 hours since morning.

    We were driving @43 degrees for around 5 hours which tested our stamina and resilience to concentrate and at high speeds and then we entered single road village roads with lot of bumps at similar temp and after hour and a half started ascending to Nainital which was yet another test of our experience and patience to reach the destination. Reaching Nainital, had to cross a traffic jam which further tested our resilience. Having lunch at Nainital gave a different turn to the reflexes and we had yet another 100 kms to cover and that too in deep mountains.

    Started at 0530 in the morning, each one of us was eager to reach the destination to enjoy the temp which was around 17-18 degrees. The engines were being tested to the optimum revolutions and throttles were not getting rest at all now when fresh and cool air started touching our faces. All six of us – Sunny almost touching his knee caps on the road on almost every second turn, Manan throttling away to glory, Pravir cruising on mountains on his Bullet 350 as if every turn was on back of his mind( he was traveling on this route for the first time) with Mrs. Pravir sitting behind, Sunil pulling the Karizma and self on Intruder too careful on road bends with my Son Abhinav was the last to reach each RV. Most powerful bike having more than 1500 CC more than all the bikes reaching the last on the mountains may not be very palatable after spending 13.5 Lacs.

    While on the way back on the plain roads where we reached quickly, we were lucky to get all the highway, as mentioned by Mannan, all clear right from Moradabad byepass to Delhi and we covered 167 Kms in around 2 hours which is difficult to digest. We were zipping and I was touching 200 KMPH every now and then, still I could find all my fellow bikers meeting me quite quickly at every stopping point.

    To share about one error which I was going to make – I was at almost 180 KMPH on the clear highway when I saw two young boys zigzagging on the highway and as I came closer they suddenly started moving to the right of the highway which is supposedly the fast lane. At this high speed I could not do much other than praying and trying to brake without skidding. Whatever happened, God was kind and I could pave my way through safely.

    The lesson what I learnt from this episode which I would like to share with you is that the trick of biking lies in saving yourself and your bike from the other fellow driver on the road and it is not all about your driving skills or driving rules (which the other person does not follow) and thus it is important to discount the degree of perfection which one feels one may be having, it would result into so called a safe driving and add to the degree of error to other vehicles traveling on the road. Assume that the other vehicle would turn without the indicator, assume that the pedestrian would jump on the road and assume that while you are overtaking the vehicle may come onto you may save you from unexpected errors. And for all this you need to have a cool mind constantly in control of your emotions which enjoys the sound of your machine and knows its ability and is considerate to both oneself and the machine.

    Overall a wonderful trip, enjoyed each and every moment with fellow bikers and made atleast a dozen new members on XBHP. Thanks to all of you. Getting ready for our next trip to Jodhpur…. Am sure Sunny and Anurag are enjoying their Italy trip representing XBHP. Wishing them a safe ride. More to follow. Please feel free to write incase of any suggestion or comment. Cheers Captain Ravee

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    SlowMotionInfinity Sunny's Avatar
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    Terse and sweet. Motorcycling indeed is a full time sensory overload which keeps you on your toes.

    Here in Italy I have seen people overtake us on autostradas at 250+ , while we were in the middle lane at 140. i have also seen cars cutting *diagonally* across several lanes in a fashion which I have never even seen in India! I feel that we have to concerntrate a lor more on riding and not crashing here in Italy than in India!Primarily because everyone is riding / driving fast and the reaction time is obviously reduced.

    But that 1 error in a million (six sigma) is what causes accidents and thats what we have to always guard against. After all even Rossi cant guarantee he will not fall in the next corner!
    Join xBhp On


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    Hey Ravee,

    Nice and crisp.. And I am glad that you were able to avoid the accident. Everyone has these occasions and one has to remember to ride in a way that allows one to ride for a long time... so taking care is paramount.

    How's the Bandit doing?
    Life is like riding a bike. It is impossible to maintain your balance while standing still.

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    Very Nice & to point the point write up sir.
    If yesterday was the day, why i am still alive.....if tomorrow is decided for me, i cann't change it...let it come...they way it wants to...i might not win...but i will make sure that even you would not win easily...

    A kind note, with love

    To The Death God...

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    great writing captain. this article with the analogy of 6 sigma in the biking world is very true as you have rightly said even one mistake in a million could be fatal......

    reading your articles everytime reminds me that I have a lot of time to buy my SBK and dont have to rush things....
    Last edited by kinshuk.arya; 07-07-2010 at 12:23 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by captainravee View Post
    The lesson what I learnt from this episode which I would like to share with you is that the trick of biking lies in saving yourself and your bike from the other fellow driver on the road and it is not all about your driving skills or driving rules (which the other person does not follow) and thus it is important to discount the degree of perfection which one feels one may be having, it would result into so called a safe driving and add to the degree of error to other vehicles traveling on the road.
    Absolutely right; several years ago, I learned through my experience that one should not only ride/drive for himself, but also for others on the road. Your words are conveying to the point.
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    Riding on the roads (doesn't matter which country) should be as carefull as moves on the chess board. You don't know who will come from which lane and hit you. There are always avoidable and ub-avoidable circumstances on roads that can be fatal. So we must take care of avoidable and must keep looking around to keep our reflexes ready for un-avoidable circumstances.

    Some examples of avoidable circumstances:

    1. Sudden change in lane of other rider/driver: keep your reflexes ready for the surprises
    2. Jumping of humans and animals on the roads from footpath: Keep your eyes radar wide to capture the far and wide range of the road.
    3. Sudden braking by other in front: keep proper distance and good condition brakes.
    4. Road conditions: Drive slow and be carefull
    5. Balled tryre treads: Keep the correct tyre pressure and condition
    6. vehicle coming from behind faster than you: keep the rear view mirrors open and practice yourself to look into them.
    7. Roadbloack on the other side of the Corner in hills: Entering fat in the corner is not the key, but quiting the corner safe is the key. So, first hit your apex and make your exit view clear and then accelerate.


    Some of the Un-avoidable circumstance:

    1. Sudden land slide in hills: It will not be so sudden that you can't even see it happening, so keep your eyes open and reflexes ready to act
    2. Sudden flat tyre because of x reason:: God bless! well hold the stearing tight and never let the machine ride/drive on it's own. Hold the handle as if taming a horse.
    3. There could be many more such unavoidable circumstances, so just make sure you don't put yourself on ease and let your guardian angel ride your machine alone....


    God bless to all! and wish all of us to ride long and healthy....
    Touring is in my blood...

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