Welcome to Netrider ... Connecting Riders!

Interested in talking motorbikes with a terrific community of riders?
Signup (it's quick and free) to join the discussions and access the full suite of tools and information that Netrider has to offer.

Help with gears

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' started by Scottie, Mar 7, 2007.

  1. My bike arrived today and I've been going through some quite streets near my home, but I need a little help with gear changes. I can cycle up into higher gears quite confidently, but the bike feels a bit shakey when I'm going into back down into lower gears.

    What tips do you have for smoother gear changes?

    Also what tips are there for taking off in first? I am stalling the bike a lot, and it's lucky that I have a tinted visor so car drivers can't see my red face.
    I also dropped my bike when I found out how heavy it was when I stalled at the top of a hill.
  2. try blipping the throttle on the downshift? makes the change smoother down
  3. are you changing down gears a few at a time?
    ie: going from say 5th to 2nd in the one clutch pull?

    If you are, try going down one at a time and you get to use the engine braking too...
  4. I'm only going down one gear at a time.

    What do you mean by blipping the throttle?
  5. when you pull the clutch in, you try to match the throttle (by revving the engine) to the engine speed on the down shift. It makes downshifts smoother.
  6. +1 to the engine blipping on downshifts. As for stalling on take-off either give the bike a few more revs or release the clutch more slowly - remember that it's a wet clutch so you don't have to worry about burning it out.
  7. Practise a lot! it will all come together - I have been only riding for 3 months and stalled for the first time at the shopping centre the other day - no tinted visor and with my built-in-blushing-genes my face matched my hair.

    We all learn at different paces and it took me a while to get smooth with the gears - listening to your engine really helps. Do you drive a manual car?
  8. +1 with what everyone else has said. Try finding the friction point of your clutch (you should have practised this at your learners course) give the bike a few revs and then ease the clutch out until you feel the bike wanting to take off, let the bike move forward slightly and then pull the clutch back in, repeat a few times, (preferably in a car park) this will help with your take offs. Remember its a new bike and will take some getting used to, every bike is different.

    Practice, practice, practice and then practice some more, enjoy the GPX, they are great bikes.
  9. Well at least you got that out of the way early ! :p :wink:
  10. find the friction point when taking off and apply acceleration smoothly at the same time as letting out the clutch.

    as for down gearing, do not even worry about blipping the throttle when down shifting yet as you are still new to riding. worry about changing gears down correctly and smoothly and until you can do that with confidence, do not attempt it coz it may cause you to crash.

    good luck with your riding and ride safe mate.
  11. Something which may help with not dropping a bike (saw this on a website somewhere):

    When you first get on an unfamiliar bike, tilt the bike left to right and feel the weight of it. For first time riders on their first bike, I'm sure it will be a surprise to see how heavy motorbikes are. It's handy to have that knowledge not to go over that particular angle where you are not going to be able to save it.

    Although when put in the situation, you'll probably try as hard as you can anyway to save it.. haha.. - it didn't help me when I dropped the bike.
  12. Sorry to disappoint you, that was a typo. I almost dropped my bike
  13. For upshifts: clutch in, drop revvs some, shift up, clutch smoothly out.
    For downshifts: clutch in, revvs up a bit, shift down, clutch smoothly out.

    You'll learn to do it quickly, which is called 'blipping'.
  14. hi, its inadvertent engine braking. Try letting the clutch out a bit more gently. Once you get a bit confident you can worry about blipping.
  15. try this
  16. it'll come naturally don't worry - when in question - I always try to be in a gear above - that way I know if it's too low or high.

    that's how I started.

    cos if you're not sure and you take it on a too low of a gear then you're gonna get a lock up..... it's safer to be in a gear higher than what you think - that way when you release the clutch you'll know that the engine isn't powering enough and you'll still have time to change gears - rather than being thrown off the bike due to a lock up.

    this is the most basic you can get - then your brain will start programming how your bike responses and by that time you'll know exactly what gear you're in and you can change accordingly.

    Blipping might be a bit too dangerous for you at the moment. but nonetheless a great advanced skill to have.
  17. I would not be bothering " Blipping " to match revs when down shifting, As it is virtually useless when approaching traffic lights and round abouts - except for the look at me factor ;) - Only needed when heavily braking to limit compression lock up.

    As mentioned, getting on the bike and practicing is the answer. Get to feel and find the friction point of the clutch, as it will make your changes both up, down and taking off Alot smoother and more rider friendly.
  18. I have a similar problem going down the gears.

    As an example, I will be in 5th and approaching a stop sign, etc. I down shift a couple of gears (one at a time), but when I come to a complete stop and then try to get it into 1st, it either goes into neutral or wont let me get to 1st.

    The neutral light does not come on until I go to take off then I'm revving the engine like crazy, or I am still in a higher gear and nearly stall the bloody thing.

    It is starting to concern me because everytime I approach lights I'm losing confidence in whether or not I'm in 1st gear or not.
  19. been there, done that!
    its to do with the way the gear box works.
    I got around it by changing to first before I stop.
    If it does happen try releasing the clutch then pulling it in again
    or sometimes my old thing likes a few revs up then it will change.
  20. And the fact that it reduces stress/wear on the chain, sprockets, gearbox, clutch etc. Really it's not that hard a skill to learn (certainly a lot easier to do on a bike than in a car) and probably best to learn to do it when learning to ride rather than trying to learn it later on (and unlearn bad habits).