How To Shift Gears On A Motorcycle
Shifting gears on a motorcycle is actually a lot more simple than you might think. Most motorcycles shift the same way so it is generally a task that once learned you can do on any bike. The first thing you are going to have to do is get familiar with your bike and find the location of important parts of the bike such as the clutch, the shifter, the pedal and the brakes as well as the starter. Once you find all these things you are ready to proceed to starting the bike and attempting to shift gears.
First of all you are going to have to get the bike into a steady position. If you do not have the bike in a steady position you won’t want to be switching gears or you could get thrown off balance and off of your bike. This is even important when you are first starting up your motorcycle, you can easily tip it over if you don’t have one of your feet planted when you are doing something like kick-starting a motorcycle. Once you get your motorcycle started you are ready to move onto the next step.
The first step you need to take after starting your motorcycle is to put the motorcycle into first gear. In order to put the motorcycle into first gear there are a variety of steps that you need to take.
The first thing that you need to do is close the throttle of your bike. After that you need to put the clutch all the way in. While you are putting the clutch in, move the gear shifter into gear number one and push downwards on the shifter.
After this step you need to gently press the throttle and slowly release the clutch until the motorcycle starts to roll forwards. The next step only needs to be followed if you wish to travel at a faster speed.
If you are ready to take your motorcycle for a spin you need to upshift and get into higher gears. It is important to shift at the right time. In order to shift the first thing that you need to do is close the throttle again and press down the clutch. At this point in time you are going to use something called the shift peg.
With your left leg lift the shift peg up as high as you can. In order to shift into higher gears you will need to move the gear shift higher up, this will allow you to drive at a faster speed.
One important note is that a clutch is not necessary in order to shift upwards once a motorcycle rider becomes more experienced. In order to do this all you have to do is lift the shifter lightly with your foot and take the throttle down, at this point your bike will shift into a higher gear on its own.
It will take a lot of practice to get good at this technique but actually saves you time and increases the length of time that your clutch will last.
If you have never ridden a motorcycle on your own before it is always a good idea to try it with an experienced rider nearby so that they can walk you through how to do it properly.
It is also not a bad idea to get yourself a cheap bike to learn on because a new rider can be rather hard on the clutch and this can cause the clutch to burn out a lot faster resulting in a rather costly repair.
If you do not have an experienced rider close by, one good option you should take advantage of is watching tutorials online. There are so many videos that will show you exactly how to shift a motorcycle properly and you may even be able to find one with your exact make and model so that all the components are even more familiar to you.
Rev matching is one tool you can use when you are driving in higher gears and you want to slow down. It can take a lot of practice to get good at this technique but once you master it, you are going to have yourself a lot smoother of a ride.
Rev matching does several important things when you are down shifting. First of all it reduces the overall stress on the drive-line. It also prevents the vehicle from doing forward weight transfers when shifting down which can cause you to have an unsmooth ride.
The last and most important thing that rev matching does is that it reduces the chance your wheels will lock up as well as decreases engine braking. Most of the time rev matching is used when you are taking corners. As you get close to the corner brake the motorcycle until you reach a safe speed. While you are still on the straight part of the road press down the clutch.
At this point in time your engine speed will start to drop down. Your final step is to choose a gear that will allow you to accelerate out of the corner. Match your throttle to your engine speed and you have just successfully done some rev matching.
If after watching videos and reading online, you still have no idea what you are doing, it is a good idea to have a look in your owner’s manual for an explanation into what each bike component does and when you are supposed to use them. It often helps to take your manual out and look at some diagrams, you can literally match up parts on your bike in this way so that you know exactly what you are dealing with.
Always remember that it doesn’t matter if you shift to a gear that you didn’t mean to. As long as you properly adjust the throttle to correspond with the gear that you shifted to, your bike will be fine and you will have no damage to your engine.