July 2016
Dates For Your Diary
Monthly meetings are held on the second Monday of every month at Liddington Village Hall, opposite the church
August - no meeting

Monday 12th September 7:30
Geoff Gregor,  Bike Examiner
Monday 9th October 7:30
Annual General Meeting
Speaker Tony Lamsdale, Bike Tutor and Speed Awareness course presenter

Shows - we need helpers for these events - please contact Mary

None planned at present

Monthly Ride-Outs
Remember that monthly Bike Ride-Outs take place on the 3rd Saturday of every month. 
Do you have a topic you would like discussed, or know of an interesting speaker?  Please contact Monica!

Welcome to the following who joined the Group recently
Mary Monro (Car)
 Philip Duff (Bike)
Tracy Duff (Bike)
Leo turner (Bike)
Marge Boulton (Bike)


Congratulations to the following members who have all recently passed their tests
Nick Edwards - Gold (Car) re-test
Babs Grillo - Gold (Car) re-test
Phill Colbourne - Silver (Bike)

Don’t forget that we have a range of clothing available to purchase. We also offer a range of books, such as Roadcraft, Motorcycle Roadcraft and the Highway Code, and these are available at discounted prices.

For more information visit the Merchandise page of our web site at www.wiltshireroadar.co.uk.
We are always looking for more articles, ideas and news for the newsletter. Have you been somewhere interesting recently that would make a good story? If you attend any group events then take a camera and send us your pictures!

Please forward all contributions to newsletter@wiltshireroadar.co.uk
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July meeting report
Another look at braking.
 Lee Watson. Honda UK.
Braking Distance.

Lee started with an image of a Ford Anglia, taking many of us back to our early driving years. The Anglia was used in the official Highway Code table of braking distances.
The comparison was made against a fully laden HGV vehicle, which takes much longer to stop.  Certainly a factor that must be considered when a driver decides to cut in early, particularly when expecting to stop. Question to ask is, can the HGV stop too?
Tests done by the MOD show one of the best vehicles for stopping quickly is a Land Rover. This can stop in a very short distance.
Which Magazine conducted tests for cars' stopping distance at 60mph. They found the best method to measure was using a GPS system.
On small cars the following results were achieved:
Top 5    Bottom 5
VW Polo  34.2m      Citroen C1
Ford Fiesta 34.7m Toyota Aygo
Skoda Fabia 34.9m Suzuki Alto
Mini Cooper 35.7m Nissan Pixo
VW Up 36.1m Kia Picanto
Make of tyre and performance can make a big difference.
Braking distances as quoted by the Highway Code are simply an average, and HGV will take longer to stop. Some exotic cars can beat the stopping distance by a considerable margin. Super cars can stop very quickly, some at 65mph can stop in 85 feet. So if following such a car, assume a much greater distance to ensure you can stop in time.
Thinking distance

4  factors make up thinking distance:
  • Observe - Is eyesight up to standard, driver could have eyestrain , could be colour blind, etc. Visual overload, there are areas where too many signs are sited. Most signed area is in Beverley in North Yorkshire. This makes it impossible for the driver to take in all the information offered, and can be distracting. Also if sunglasses are worn this can reduce effectiveness of spotting brake lights on other vehicles.
  • Orientate - This phase requires you to understand the situation you are seeing. A more experienced driver will quicken up the procedure. Inexperience can take seconds longer.
  • Decide - Driver decides what action he will take.
  • Act. - Then puts into action what is decided to deal with the hazard.
Manufacturer Testing

All manufacturers will invest in measuring stopping distances. A GPS system is used. Rather than a human driver, a robot is used. This is the most reliable way to ensure that repeatability is achieved. To get a true comparison, exact situations must be repeated.
Output is shown in a graph form. It cannot differentiate between thinking and actual braking time, though there is some time lag evident before the vehicle starts to slow due to brake pressure being applied.

A very small part of the tyre is ever in contact with the road. Data was shown from Michelin. To avoid skidding, the tyre needs to keep moving on the road. This is called slipping. If it stops slipping, that is when skidding occurs.
Very small movements happen all the time, these are micro movements, sub mm in length. The tyre performs like memory foam, returning back to normal position once it leaves the road surface as the wheel revolves. This is essentially how the tyre grips. If you imagine how a caterpillar moves this is how a tyre moves on the road surface. It forms a temporary bond with the road surface at the point of contact.
Rough Road Surface
When the tyre is static it will sink into the varying surface levels. When moving, the grip will be loosened. If wet, then volume of water gathered will depend on how much grip is lost.
Be aware of different road make up. Shale, grip is good. Tar and chippings do not provide good grip surprisingly, and cobblestones are very bad.
The compound that the tyre is made from affects grip dramatically. HGV tyres are made from a very cheap compound. Such high mileage means cost savings are needed. Be aware again that HGV’s stopping distances are much longer than expected.
Wet Grip Performance

When the road surface is wet, it adds considerably to stopping distances and grip. When buying new tyres, they will be rated Wet Grip Performance on a scale A through to G. The difference in stopping distance from an A rated tyre to  G rated tyre is 18 metres, so it is worth buying as high a rating as possible.
Tyres are designed to move the water away to improve adhesion. The tread squeezes the water out. Corners of the tread make contact with road and move the water through the tread, dispersing it.
Tread Depth

Most new tyres will have 7mm of tread depth on supply, and legal requirement is 1.6mm minimum. The difference in stopping distance between the two can be 7 meters. It is possible to buy winter tyres. These will increase grip in icy and snow conditions. They will also stop you quicker than summer tyres in the colder conditions. However in temperatures in excess of 28 degrees, the winter tyres stopping distances increase dramatically.
Tyre Pressures

Always check tyre pressures, at least once a week. If wrongly inflated, they will lose grip with the road.
It is best to check pressures when cold. (Hot is still considered a problem even if the car has been stationary for 2 hours). If you must check when tyres are hot, then add 5 psi (0.3 bar) to the recommended tyre pressure. In Lee’s findings, filling tyres with Nitrogen does not maintain pressure any better than ordinary air.
Cars manufactured since 2012 have tyre pressure monitoring systems fitted. These are very useful additions to cars and generally work very well. Some cars have Indirect Monitoring systems fitted. These are very complicated, and can be problematic if not reset properly when new tyres are fitted.
In 2016 Autobild Magazine tested different tyres on a VW Golf. Cheaper tyres took as much as 5 meters extra stopping distance. Always fit quality tyres to your vehicle. When changing tyres, advice is to put new on back, and old on the front.

Brake Pads

Brake pads made from a bonding agent, friction agents, lubricants, fillers and dampening agents, and binders. They are constructed on a steel backing plate, then shims added, then an under layer and finally friction material / scorching.
In modern pads, asbestos and lead are now not used. You should not run brake pads down to the backing plate. The final layer of friction / scorching material contains a higher level of rubber, so be aware that when the pad is nearing the end of its usefulness, wear rate will increase.
Obviously better quality pads will reduce stopping distances. When braking in the wet, the pads will reduce from .4g braking efficiency in the dry to just 0.15g in the wet. This is another reason you must allow more distance to stop when wet conditions prevail. Pads will heat up to 300 degrees when used a lot. The hotter the pads, the less efficient they will be.
Hand Brake Button

Contrary to Roadcraft advice, Honda recommend that when applying the hand brake, the button is not depressed. If you press it and release it and there is any danger of slippage, there is a danger the hand brake will not be applied properly, thus allowing the car to slip. The recommendation is to read owner’s manual to see what the manufacturer recommends. Electronic parking brake will not be a problem. But, always leave the car in gear when parking up.
Suspension / Dampers
Worn shock absorbers can increase stopping distance by up to 50%, but there is very little data available.
Anti-Lock Brakes

Different systems are fitted by manufacturers depending on the type of vehicle. You should ensure you are aware of what systems are fitted and know what they do and how they assist you.  ESP (Electronic Stability Program) and Stability Modulator are different types. It is important you check which type your car has fitted.
They all vary, and include features such as traction control, hill start assist, emergency brake assist, dynamic handling, tyre pressure monitoring, trailer stability assist, and hill control.
Ed Deacon
Alps trip wrap-up
To complete the story, the ladies in the car provide their story.
And now… the Alps trip from the car perspective.:
Having read the other three reports there is little else to say. We planned the trip with every expectation of cold weather, plenty of rain and seriously aching limbs, none of which we suffered. The first couple of days were incredibly hot and saw the bikers shedding clothing at a fast rate of knots, the boot began to fill up with discarded biker-wear. The pollen from the Rape flowers played havoc with Winston and Sian’s eyes and the car had to make an emergency pit stop at a pharmacy to stock up on antihistamines.
We, in the car, however, were seriously comfortable with reclining seats and air conditioning, plenty of sweeties and easy access to liquid, albeit only water.
We lost the bikers fairly quickly as our speeds and the car’s inability to filter took its toll. However with good maps and our trusty sat-nav (Oriel by name) we managed to find all hotels and guest houses with ease. On the second day stop at Lons, the hotel was hidden by conker tree foliage and as we sat sipping our cold beers, the bikers rode blithely past totally oblivious. We sent out the “mother ship” to round them up and guide them in.
Motorway tolls were also much easier for the car, so we devised a system where, if the bikers were following us at a peage the car team would collect all the tickets from the bikers and then at the pay station pay them all through, saving them the effort of finding the tickets, wallets, cash/cards etc. It worked very well with one exception where the machine did not issue a ticket and Messrs Izatt and Southgate had to pass through together, we think we got away with it.
It had never occurred to me how protective we are of our bikers until we had to follow them along a stretch of motorway and we watched, usually Swiss, car drivers carving them up and squeezing them out, driving on their tails and generally disrespecting them. We could do nothing but watch in horror at some of the near misses. One car even ran over Pete’s foot in a petrol station, didn’t apologise and drove off!!
The ladies in the car went off one evening to find the snow line, threw a few snowballs and took some lovely photos. We had a day in Megeve which was disappointingly closed for the May break. It was almost impossible to even find somewhere to eat in a town full of yummy looking restaurants , all closed, but nevertheless, a beautiful little town and we had a good walk round, trying to imagine it covered in snow.
We had a really wonderful holiday, folks who didn’t really know each other well became firm friends and we had great fun.
We are already planning the trip next year, much shorter journey to our guesthouse or gite and would really love more people to join us, cars and bikes. Watch this space….

[Everyone should now have received an email with next year's dates, see below - Ed]
Mary Southgate
Europe trip 2017
Following the success of the 2016 trip, there will be a repetition in 2017, open to all - cars and bikes.
Location - Monschau - a 4 hour hop from Calais in the Eifel national park.
Dates - same as 2016 - 1st Sat in May (6th) depart, 2nd Sat May (13th) return.
Hotels - Lots – in the centre of the town all within walking distance of each other or:
Self catering – Proposal is to hire 1 decent size place to congregate and cook.
Please contact Mark Sealey [Sealeym9[at]gmail.com] to express an interest.
Re-tests and membership subscriptions
Don't forget that all members are welcome to have further training drives/rides with a Tutor before taking their three-yearly re-test. Please contact Monica if you would like to arrange this. Please can you also let Monica know when you take your re-test so that the Group's records can be kept up to date.
On a similar note, a reminder about membership subscriptions. Depending on your status, you will be liable for different fees:
Associate member (not taken an advanced test) - you pay a subscription to the Wiltshire Group only. When ready for test, you pay a test fee to RoADAR HQ, usually via our Group Treasurer.
Full member (passed an advanced test) - you pay a subscription to the RoADAR national organisation (currently £28 per annum).
Your first year's  membership is included in your test fee. At the end of that year you will receive a reminder asking you to set up a Direct Debit for future years, to ensure that your retests will occur every three years.
If you elect to remain a member of Wiltshire Group, you also pay a subscription (currently £17 per annum) to us. This covers our monthly meetings, hire of premises, tutor training, this newsletter, etc.
Swindon 105.5 FM
Peter Genet now has a regular fortnightly slot on the station talking about road safety, advanced riding and driving. Join him every other Tuesday at 10:00 with repeats on Wednesday at 18:00.
Skillshare 2016
Skillshare runs on the first Saturday of each month at the Divine Cafe in Cherhill. This year we are extending it to car drivers as well as bike riders. Drivers or riders can turn up and get a free assessment of their skills, with the opportunity to sign up for full membership if they want to take it further. If members get an opportunity to publicise this please ask Mark Sealey (skillshare(at)wiltshireroadar.co.uk) for more information.
Membership Secretary: Mrs. Monica Graham, 114 Marines Drive, Faringdon, Oxon. SN7 7UG.Tel: 01367 242377
Hon Secretary: Mrs. Mary Southgate
To make sure that you receive our messages we recommend that you add newsletter@wiltshireroadar.co.uk, membership@wiltshireroadar.co.uk and secretary@wiltshireroadar.co.uk to your address list.