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Struggling to maneuver in 1st gear, is it me or the bike

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' at netrider.net.au started by OscarA, Jun 21, 2009.

  1. Need some advise, I'm new to riding (only one month) and have a FZX250 Zeal which I'm enjoying riding and building my confidence on but I have one problem.
    My problem is low speed maneuvering especially with small roundabouts or tight u turns.
    If I keep the bike in first gear every time I give the bike a little throttle she lunges forward. I have adjusted the throttle as it was a little slack and I have tightened the chain which has help eliminate the jerky gear changes but down low I find it hard to control the bike.
    I try very small throttle movements but so far no good.
    What mistake am I making, should I forget about using first gear except for initial take off?
    Could it be a characteristic of the bike as it's a very revy bike?

  2. feather the clutch, its all in clutch control. maybe use second?
  3. +1

    keep revs steady and control the speed with the clutch.
  4.  Top
  5. +1

    Some times first is just to jerky, i have trouble doing u-turns in first usually end up putting the foot down. But in 2nd it's much smoother.

    First really only is taking off and a lot of the time you can just do that in 2nd to. Esp if you have dropped the teeth on your sprockets.
  6. as you ride more your throttle control will get better. try a few car park sessions riding in 1st.
  7. Thanks for all the replies it's much appreciated.
    I'll practice my clutch control and see how I go.
    The bike is revy so using second gear at low speed makes sense.
    I wasn't sure if I was doing something wrong and as it turns out I was :oops:
    I also practise using the back brakes to help control the bike and see how I go.
  8. Best advice I can give is come to Sat morning St Kilda learners practice. Clutch control while slow riding is what Doug had me practicing and with his help and advice I learnt heaps.
  9. Try using 2nd (can use 3rd but a lil more tricky). They can be more stable, and are less jerky when you give it some gas. At my learners/full licence test, guy told me use 2nd or 3rd, because its less torque'y ratios so when you give it some gas its not as jerky.

    again you can use clutch, but if your practicing for the test i dont think your allowed to use the clutch. i recomend using 2nd gear.

    practice, your throttle control will get better.
  10. huh since when?
  11. 3rd in a tight, small roundabout or u-turn?
    do you know wtf you're talking about mate? :roll:
  12. ++1

  13. The St Kilda practice is teaching me SO much in such a short amount of time, I highly reccommend it!!

    I found the bikes at the learner course I did to be REALLY rough in 1st gear but my own bike is alot smoother.. So it could be a combination of your bike + your skills as a rider.

    Riding slow in 1st and doing maneuvering practice will help you -so- much as, atleast in my limited experience, I've found this sort of stuff the hardest to learn.

    On Saturday morning I got there and I could barely make the weaving cones :) By the time I left I could do tight cornering in a circle without falling over :) Round and round I go weeee!
  14. 4-stroke, Liquid-cooled, DOHC Inline 4 - A relatively smooth type of engine when it comes to motorbikes.
    Is it carbied or injected? The early model injected bikes can be really jerky.

    Anyway, the problem is simply, you don't know how to ride yet.

    Bike control at very slow speed requires a lot more skill than barreling down the freeway.
    Stay relaxed and loose, look where you want to go (ie, over your shoulder for a u-turn), and learn how to slip the clutch right on the friction point so that sudden changes in throttle do not make a difference. The clutch is what provides your power for walking pace manouveres, not your throttle.

    You should have been taught all this when going for your L's, at least in SA I know its a key focus of your learner course.
    So. Just get out there and practice. Practice. Practice.
    Look over your shoulder, stay loose, slip the clutch, experiment with leaning your body various ways and drag the rear brake a little to smooth out any jerkiness with your clutch work.

    Other things that can contribute to jerkiness.

    Low tyre pressure. Worn chain. Worn suspension components (ie, axle bushings). Poorly tuned carbies. Dirty throttle bodies.
  15. Yes a 4cyl, especially such a torqueless wonder such as 250cc ones, should not be jerky at low speed and low revs. Try relaxing? Sometimes its as simple as that. If youre holding onto the throttle tightly that wont help.
  16. I think this probably sums it up best after ready all the replies.

    I would love to come down to one of the Saturday St Kilda Learners morning unfortunately I work most weekends so getting there isn't an option.
    I'll start using the clutch more, using second gear and using the back brakes to see what works for me.
    There's a few places close by I can practice.
    Thanks for all the replies and tips.
  17. Do not take it as me being offensive though. I remember it's probably THE BEST thing an instructor yelled at me when I was at my L course.

    I had yelled something about it being quite jerky down low and he screamed back "Bullshit, you just don't know how to ride yet".

    Verbal slap in the face that motivated me to reaaaaaaallly pay attention to what I was doing and go home and practice a fair bit. :p
  18. Didn't take it that way at all, I took it as a positive and appreciated your reply.
  19. yes i said 3rd. and i also said more trickly, so stick with 2nd. we did our uturns in 3rd gear and 2nd gear in full licence test. and we were doing it on 1cylinder or 2 cylinder bikes cant remember. why dont you try it one day, 3rd is a lil bit more smoother than 2nd, and because hes a newbe, his throttle control might not be as smooth, therefore it wont be as jumpy/jerky.

    and dont go telling me its not possible it is, you can do any corner in any gear, just f*kn hard to handle (clutch control too) & exit accerlation is lagged(engine is laboured).

    its up to the rider to decide how tight the turn is, what entry speed to use, gear, how torquey the bike is, the road cond. etc

    OscarA just keep practicing there buddy, best way to learn is to experience it.
  20. When I did my License course, at Ride Tek they taught us how do U turns in 2nd gear and using the rear brake, it wasn't part of the test though,, they also had us weaving around cones etc. I found this really helpful, because we didn't do this in the Learners course and I am glad that I didn;'t wait for 12 months or more before going for my licence to find this out.