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Location of bike controls

Discussion in 'General Motorcycling Discussion' started by jd, Mar 9, 2006.

  1. Thinking this morning about how pretty much all road bikes now seem to have the controls (throttle, gear lever, brakes etc) all located in exactly the same place. It makes sense but got me wondering just what was the first bike to use the current configuration and does anyone know why it seems to have become the accepted standard? Also are there any bikes out there that are still different?

  2. i think from the age of bikes that this has been the normal setup..
    with the brakes and clutch
    im not sure about the indicators, lights and other little bits and pieces though i have seen old harlys with the gear control near the tank....
    but i do believe this is how its been since bikes were built...
  3. Jd What a can of worms you have started from my understanding on the matter it was resolved by the american market in the late 50,s early 60,s so since the Japs entered the market it was there standard. up to then they always copied harleys any way.
    Most european bikes had right hand gear change even up to 1981 all laverdas where supplied right foot shift and cross over linkages where required for all markets other than italy in fact i ride my bikes with right foot gear change. :cool: No body i know can ride them and my shift is reversed ie down for up makes it easy when cranked over dont need to get the foot under the lever. :?

    Some weird ones that where around is some police departments in the states still have left hand accelerators so the police can fire with there right hand :?

    Old indians with advance and retard on the right and throttle on the left got to get back to work now just spent 12 days in india and china for work so got a lot of catching up to do ps they are all the same now over there
  4. Yeah that makes sense, I remember reading about how the US set up a Harley plant in Japan during the late 30's - of course being located in Hiroshima meant that it didn't survive past the mid-40's.
  5. Hey good article there brucey. It's damn hard to find info on many of the early Japanese companies and even the early history of some of the major ones (at least in English), so made for a very interesting read. Seems that to a large extent everyone's just copied someone else when it comes to motorcycle design. I mean I can understand the original logic behind the position of the rear brake and gear lever since these needed a direct mechanical connection (obviously hydraulic brakes weren't an option). But there's no real reason why the clutch, throttle, and/or front brake couldn't have been switched around.
  6. hehe I remember an episode of happy days where the fonz got off (for whatever) because the eyewitness saw him using the right hand as throttle but he had some rare left throttled motorbike and it couldn't have been him.
  7. It's part of ADR compliance that all controls, incl headlight and turn indicator switches be where they are.
  8. Hey john give us the link to that ADR'S ive just been to the DOTARS website and cheched back on the ADR's they dont actually list that the twist grip needs to be on the right hand bar etc or that the indicator block needs to be on the left etc it lays out the position of the bars, heights etc and locations of indicators etc and headlights Height min max etc etc but not for the controls

    Man we could have some fun with that one mod the bike and no one would be able to ride it :LOL: :LOL:
  9. I've got all the ADR's on CD from DOTARS, I'll check.

    I had a riding mate that didn't have a right arm, he put the twist grip on the left side of the bar with the clutch & front brake. The throttle turned forwards to accelerate; made it easier letting the clutch out.

    I rode it a bit, was pretty easy.
  10. If it aint broke, why fix it?
  11. So modern BMWs with left turn indicator switch on the left bar, and right turn indicator on the right bar wouldn't get ADR compliance?

  12. Yep a guy i used to know only had thumb and fore finger left on left hand i used a throttle on the left hand bar magura quick action type so he could whip the clutch in worked a treat he was as happy as punch
  13. Found part of the answer - the twistgrip throttle was developed and introduced by Indian in 1904. A lot of the earlier (and later) bikes simply worked on adjusting the tension of the drive belt (throttle was fixed).
  14. Can that be done to any bike? Just seems to make more sense to me that way.
  15. My moto Guzzi locates the indicators and horn different to jap bikes.
    The horn is where the indicators should be and indicators where horn should be. BMWs have a left and right indicator.
  16. Undii, the episode of Happy Days you're referring to was the one where The Fonz was actually on the Jury. Someone was accused of snatching a lady's bag (I think) and the Fonz was the only one on the jury which was saying he was not guilty. He eventually convinced everyone the accussed was innocent because they guy couldn't of snatched the bag AND accelerated at the same time because the throttle control on that particular model bike was on the wrong side.....I'm surprised I remember it, it was sooo long ago....

  17. Gypsy. ahh ok. Yeah it was soooo long ago and now you have jogged my memory. heh

    Good stuff (I think :p )
  18. Linenoise yep it can be done its a lot easier if the bike has rear sets or a linkage from the foot peg to the gear shift instead of running the link parrellel you re-orientate to running Z style depending on the bike you will have to make new links etc or the alternative is the classic italian Heel and Toe lever
    Refer link
    about half way down Laverda 750 SFC "1. Serie" von 1972

    Just use the heel of the boot to shift up
  19. Seems to be able to be done easily...Stack munkey ( BANGR ) has done it to his Buell...it's also the same on his track bike.