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I'm a Rookie, How do I Wheelie?
nd4speed's Avatar
Posts: 7
Join Date: January 5, 2003
Location: Cedar Rapids, IA
March 17, 2003, 01:43 PM

Hey everyone....Enjoying riding out here in Iowa and just think this forum rocks for advice so here is the new question of the month for me. How do I smooth up my shifting....It doesnt seem as smooth as it could be especially the shift from 1st to 2nd. So what can I do or practice to smooth it up. Especially concerned when having someone on the back. Let me know loungers and ladies....

P.S. Anyone know the easiest way to get in so I can drag my knee..

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SVSR6's Avatar
Posts: 412
Join Date: January 27, 2003
March 17, 2003, 01:59 PM

Try giving a little upward pressure with your foot before pulling in the clutch. It's all about timing, but you might also need to adjust your shift lever.

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GP Racer
KneeDragr's Avatar
Posts: 1,116
Join Date: January 16, 2003
Location: Arlington
March 17, 2003, 02:06 PM

Yeah absolutely put some pressure on the shifter just before you shift, then simultaenously roll off the throttle and just barely fan the clutch and it will slip right into the next gear very smooth. In fact a lot of times you dont even need the clutch, but I always use it on 1-2.
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spud's Avatar
Posts: 16,846
Join Date: September 30, 2002
Location: Lake Ridge
March 17, 2003, 02:07 PM

I suggest taking an advanced course and or a class taught at a track. Good teachers and good environment to learn this properly. Hearing it and doing it are two different things. A repetubale track school will be your best bet to learn to drag a knee in a controlled enviorinment

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GP Racer
OneFunR6's Avatar
Posts: 1,174
Join Date: September 30, 2002
Location: going west...
March 23, 2003, 02:28 AM

sounds like you might want to go backwards! :laugh:

what I mean is, to go to a p-lot with a willing passenger and pratice
1st and 2nd gear roll-on's, at low speeds,....

after all, pratice make purfect!

- Greg

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GP Racer
speednuts's Avatar
Posts: 1,184
Join Date: October 5, 2002
March 23, 2003, 06:38 AM

Shifting gears smoothly is one of the more difficult things to do while operating a motorcycle; shifting (particularly down-shifting) without feeling the weight transfer that usually accompanies a sloppy gear change takes practice.
We've taken some flack for promoting the use of two-finger braking on modern sport bikes, but this technique is especially appropriate if the rider is braking and modulating the throttle simultaneously when down-shifting.
Engine speed and rear wheel rpm must be matched to achieve a smooth down-shift, and there are two ways to accomplish this. In the first two photos, the rider displays the throttle-blipping technique used by most racers, which is also applicable to street riding. Since braking and down-shifting often occur simultaneously, the right hand is responsible for not just slowing the motorcycle, but raising engine rpm to match the lower gear ratio as well. Make sure the brake lever is positioned so it will not contact your knuckles under hard braking.
As the throttle is closed and the brakes are applied, load the shifter slightly to pick up the slack in the lever. The next three movements are done simultaneously and quickly: pull in the clutch, blip the throttle and move the shift lever. Adjust your clutch lever so that the point of engagement/disengagement is as far from the bar as possible, always making sure to leave 2 to 3mm of free play at the end of the lever. This allows the clutch lever to be disengaged in its initial range of motion, with just a quick two- or three-finger movement. The rider in the inset photo is using four fingers and pulling the clutch all the way to the bar -- wasted movement unless you're either coming to or already at a stop.
As the shifter is notched into the lower gear, blip the throttle (rev the engine slightly and quickly). If you're braking while working the throttle, work at keeping lever pressure uniform to prevent the front of the bike from bobbing up and down. Let out the clutch fairly quickly and in between each shift, and never click more than one gear at a time. Practice until this becomes second nature. If the revs drop and then rise again as you let the clutch out, more rpm are needed prior to clutch engagement.
Here's another technique: when decelerating at a partial throttle setting, complete the downshift while keeping the throttle constant (i.e., don't modulate the throttle at all). Pull in the clutch, click the downshift and let the clutch out. Don't move the throttle. You'll be surprised at how smooth the gear change feels -- and your passenger will thank you.
Proper adjustment of all levers is important to optimize the movements it takes to correctly control the motorcycle. Notice the rider's foot in the inset photo; in order to downshift, it must be lifted off the footpeg -- the lever is adjusted too high. Make sure the shift lever, clutch and brake are all properly adjusted so minimal movement is needed to operate the motorcycle.


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Wreckless's Avatar
Posts: 66
Join Date: April 10, 2003
Location: MD
April 18, 2003, 04:56 PM

on the topic of shifting I noticed that someone said they only use the clutch sometimes. Is this a good way to shift or the way that you are supposed to shift (without the clutch)??
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pip666's Avatar
Posts: 10
Join Date: November 20, 2003
Location: not canada, canada sucks
April 18, 2003, 05:38 PM

im pretty sure the clutch is their for a reason, not using it is halfway to having an automatic transmission, and if you wrent supposed to use it, they would simply have a button for changing gears
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GP Racer
YUSOSLO's Avatar
Posts: 1,043
Join Date: October 20, 2002
April 19, 2003, 09:35 AM

Up shifting without using the clutch is OK. It will not cause things to come flying out of the motor. Although just remember to back off the throttle a bit when doing it. This will allow for much quicker upshifts. Also nothing is a substitute for practice, practice, practice.

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