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Thread: When parking your bike.... Bars to the left, or right?

  1. #1
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    When parking your bike.... Bars to the left, or right?

    When I park my bike and leave it on the side stand, I always turn my handlebars to the left (wheel pointing left). On occasion I'll leave the wheel pointing straight ahead. But I NEVER turn it to the right. And to be honest, I cringe when I see other bikes parked with the wheel pointing out to the right. Why? I really don't know.

    I'm trying to understand my mindset on this. Clearly I'm just used to doing it my way and when I see someone else doing it the other way I just think it's wrong (for no apparent good reason). But..... is it? I Googled it awhile back and someone brought up that having the wheel pointing in the same direction as your side stand helps to lock the bike in place and prevent the stand from folding if the bike is bumped from behind. I've never tested that theory, and I'm not sure how much sense it makes.

    Thoughts?

  2. #2
    Super Moderator When parking your bike.... Bars to the left, or right? 670cc's Avatar
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    I park it with the wheel wherever it’s pointed, but it’s most often straight ahead. More important to me is the lean angle due the surface it’s on. I want sufficient lean angle that a bypasser couldn’t bump it over, and that wind gust couldn’t blow it over. If lean angle is not sufficient, I reposition the bike. If I were locking the steering, which I rarely do, I guess having the steering pointed either left or right is fine with me, whichever way seems more stable. My dual sport is parked in the garage right now with the steering pointed to the right, and I’m totally cool with that. I’d say in general that it seems more natural to point a dirt or dual sport wheel to the right.

    I haven't seriously thought about the geometry of the steering trail when it comes to stability on the side stand. The trail (offset between the steering pivot line and the tire contact patch) would probably affect the lean angle and favor one wheel direction vs the other when leaning left on the sidestand. My gut feel is the turning the steering to the right leans the bike over slightly more, but I could be wrong. Maybe I’ll think that over someday.
    Last edited by 670cc; 20th April 2019 at 19:27.
    Greg
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  3. #3
    Senior Member When parking your bike.... Bars to the left, or right? ld_rider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jtanner View Post
    I cringe when I see other bikes parked with the wheel pointing out to the right. Why? I really don't know.
    Start with a professional mental health provider...they are trained to help individuals understand their irrational *quirks*.
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  4. #4
    Senior Member When parking your bike.... Bars to the left, or right?
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    Quote Originally Posted by 670cc View Post
    If I were locking the steering, which I rarely do, I guess having the steering pointed either left or right is fine with me, whichever way seems more stable.
    Wait, can we lock the steering when it's pointed to the right? I thought it had to be pointed left. I've never tried to the right.
    "Roads are just a suggestion, like pants."

  5. #5
    Super Moderator When parking your bike.... Bars to the left, or right? 670cc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Doc True View Post
    Wait, can we lock the steering when it's pointed to the right? I thought it had to be pointed left. I've never tried to the right.
    It seems that most bikes I’ve owned can be locked in either direction. Based on your post, I went out and tried it, and just discovered after owning the NC for almost 7 years, that it does seem to lock only when pointed left. Isn’t that something!?
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  6. #6
    Senior Member When parking your bike.... Bars to the left, or right?
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    I've never had a stock bike that would lock anywhere other than left.

  7. #7
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    Locking the steering is a big one I didn't even consider. The NC and my wife's cbr250 both lock to the left only. This does lead me to believe that turning to the left would be preferred.

  8. #8
    Senior Member When parking your bike.... Bars to the left, or right? davidc83's Avatar
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    I never lock the bars in place. When I park and leave on side-stand, the wheel stays in its position (usually straight ahead). If I am worried someone may bump it and knock it off the side stand, I leave it in first gear (I shift to neutral when starting it). If someone wants to steal the bike (usually what the locking bars deter), than they can steal it-why I have full coverage on both my C50 Boulevard (with 94,000+ miles) and NC700x (with over 50,000+ miles).
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  9. #9
    Junior Member XA4av8r's Avatar
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    pg.13 of owners manual! Maybe the OP read it and just didn't remember. But it says turning the bars right while on the side stand reduces stability.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Dennis M's Avatar
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    Harley's you turn to the right all others turn to the left. I just leave mine straight ahead most of the time.
    I'm not smart enough for a smart phone, so all I have is a dumb phone.
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