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Using The Gears

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' started by Chief, Jul 14, 2006.

  1. I am a new rider and have a Honda CB400. Its a nice bike. Not a POS or a rocketship, somewhere in between. Having been a car driver for many years, I now have approximately double the revs to redline and 6 gears instead of 5. Now in a manual car, driving around normally, I tend to change gears around the 3 - 4000 rpm mark. On a bike what's the concensus of opinion about when to change. For example 50% to redline feels about right. I tend to like having the bike in a gear that will accelerate when needed. This means that for around town 60-80kph 5th & 6th gear won't get much of a workout. What are other rider's thoughts.

  2. well im on a 250 and its a Vtwin for me 5 and half is nice a smooth change.
  3. just when the bike seems to be over reving, go by the sound of the engine.

    motorbikes tend to ride alot higher rev's compared to cars and it doesnt do them harm to have the rev's high.
  4. At 60-80kph, spending most of your time in third (in stop-start traffic, or when accelerating) and changing up to fourth when you're just cruising at a constant speed, sounds right for most small-midrange bikes.

    Which CB400 is it? I'm assuming the 90's model (as opposed to the 70's classic). The 90's one has a very sporty engine, same as the CBR400, making very similar (possibly identical?) power to the CBR400. It's meant to be revved hard, and will take a lot of abuse. frequent redline trips are no big deal. You can use all the revs available, and it should make a good linear spread of power, usuable anywhere in the range.

    If its the 70's one, you'd probally want to take it a bit easier.

    Changing at 50% of max revs is too low for any small-midsize bike. My bike revs to 7000, and I usually change up between 5000-6000. Mabye 70% of maximum rpm is more like it?
  5. As you're new to bikes, you have to get out of the (car) mentality that revving out the engine will harm it. The bike doesn't really care what gear it's in (to an extent!), your riding style will dictate it more than anything.

    I also have a 400, a bit different to yours, but using the gears will be similar. The super4's are a great all round bike, and although they do like to be revved, they have a bit better midrange torque than the sports 400's so shifting up at only 8-9k will make good progress.

    Peak torque on these is probably somewhere around 10.5k rpm, use that as an indicator of how efficiently you're accelerating.

    It comes down to personal preferance. When in traffic, I'm like you and like to have a bit of power at hand in case of emergencies, so use a gear lower than normal.

    CB400's are a great bike, I'm considering one for my next economical commuter.
  6. When it sounds like crap, shift up a gear. Great system :p.
  7. Ahahah, quoted for truth!
  8. Like any woman .. listen to her.

    :LOL: oh couldnt resist. Since in a topic couple weeks back bout naming bikes
    & you guys insisted that bikes are females.
  9. Ahahah come on, that's just a tradition! The idea comes - presumably - from treating your car/bike the way you'd treat a lady (assuming you're a gentleman or a semblence thereof). Then it just grew into the car/bike *being* a lady heh.
  10. You mean ignoring her until you need her to get another beer from the fridge...
  11. Bike engines are meant to be revved; keep it well over half-way to redline and you'll not do it any harm, plus you'll be in the right area of power and torque to gun it when you need to.....
  12. I get the idea, give it plenty of revs. Thanks everyone for your feedback.
  13. ....... and you'll end up hating your bike.
  14. More like "treat em mean and keep em keen". Rev her up every chance you get. :wink:

  15. :LOL:
  16. Well i got 6 gears on the VTR and 5 on the FJR and yup i use em all

    :LOL: :LOL: :LOL: :LOL: :LOL: :LOL: :LOL: :LOL: :LOL: