How do racers shift? - Wrist Twisters
 
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post #1 of 33 Old 07-18-2011, 04:20 AM Thread Starter
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Question How do racers shift?

I love watching road racing, especially the big boys in MotoGP. How do they shift so fast? I've ridden since I was three but apart from the Honda QA50 I learned on in 1974 (a semi-auto,) I've always shifted with the clutch.

Do MotoGP guys have F1 type paddles or buttons? There's no way they can be shifting so fast using the standard clutch pull, right? They don't lose hardly any RPM when they shift. Do they have DCT like the new VFR?

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post #2 of 33 Old 07-18-2011, 04:39 AM Thread Starter
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I found a picture of my first bike - this isn't mine but it's the same right down to the color. It does have a clutch, but only 1 or 2 gears if I remember correctly. Can't believe I'm 40....
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File Type: jpg Honda-QA50-1973.jpg (183.4 KB, 5 views)

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post #3 of 33 Old 07-18-2011, 04:59 AM
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I may be off, but I don't think they use the clutch while upshifting. They get the RPMs up, let off for a tiny bit, shift, then gas it.


Not that I've ever done that, it's just what I've heard.

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post #4 of 33 Old 07-18-2011, 05:37 AM
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they use a "quick shift" device that momentarily cuts the engine out on up shifts and use the clutch like normal on down shifts

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post #5 of 33 Old 07-18-2011, 07:05 AM
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what he said ^^

The RSV4, S1000rr and possibly a few more can be had with quick shifters for the street.

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post #6 of 33 Old 07-18-2011, 07:17 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks. I have heard of quick shifters but never read much on them. How about the DCT business on the new VFR? Has Honda tested DCT on race bikes? Why or why not?

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post #7 of 33 Old 07-18-2011, 07:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mambomonster View Post
How about the DCT business on the new VFR? Has Honda tested DCT on race bikes? Why or why not?
DCT is to heavy for racebikes, it would be more of a disadvantage then using the quick shifter method they use now, I think

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post #8 of 33 Old 07-18-2011, 07:56 AM
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DCT is currently not allowed in MotoGP.

Motorcyclist recently had an article on what Honda may be up to, though.
Is an Advanced Gearbox Giving Honda's MotoGP Racers an Edge? - Motorcyclist Magazine

Is doesn't really answer your question, but I though it was kinda interesting. Especially since a few pages later in the mag, James Parker compared aspects of the current Honda RC212V transmission to concepts implemented by Hodaka in the '70s.

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post #9 of 33 Old 07-18-2011, 08:03 AM
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you can buy a quick shifter from dyno jet for your power commander on just about any bike... like stated it blips the throttle just the right amount to unbind the tranny for super quick up shifts.

regardless i use the clutch on most every shift... im not a racer and my stuff aint rebuilt every 3 hrs haha so its gotta last.... figure a clutch is a very easy thing to replace vs transmission.

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post #10 of 33 Old 07-18-2011, 09:24 AM
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My bike shifts up and down without the clutch pretty easily. And it's become a bit of a habit for me. I dont do it always, but I catch myself doing it often, especially upshifting while riding in a "spirited fashion." I was under the beleif that this was not damaging to the transmission. Can anyone confirm or deny this?

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post #11 of 33 Old 07-18-2011, 09:39 AM
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Not really an expert but I quick shift all the time (road & track). Recommendations for my bike (05ZX-6R) was to use the clutch to shift to 2nd then shift how you want. Does it damage your bike? I think that's a matter of debate, but for the most part if you're just tooting around town you'll be fine.

I've ridden on the BMW S1000RR with the quickshifter technology. Holy cow what a difference, no need to let off the throttle, it's all done by the on board computer... So smooth

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post #12 of 33 Old 07-18-2011, 12:06 PM
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Right, wrong, or indifferent...I clutch between 1 and 2 then don't use my clutch after that while upshifting. I always use the clutch to downshift.

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post #13 of 33 Old 07-18-2011, 01:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cmurphy84 View Post
Right, wrong, or indifferent...I clutch between 1 and 2 then don't use my clutch after that while upshifting. I always use the clutch to downshift.
+1

Pretty much how I shift.

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post #14 of 33 Old 07-18-2011, 01:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cmurphy84 View Post
Right, wrong, or indifferent...I clutch between 1 and 2 then don't use my clutch after that while upshifting. I always use the clutch to downshift.
same here.

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post #15 of 33 Old 07-18-2011, 01:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cmurphy84 View Post
Right, wrong, or indifferent...I clutch between 1 and 2 then don't use my clutch after that while upshifting. I always use the clutch to downshift.
Same here too. Very smooth Upshifts using this method.

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post #16 of 33 Old 07-18-2011, 02:16 PM
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So why clutch inbetween 1 and 2nd and not the rest? I use both methods but clutchless is MUCH smoother.

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post #17 of 33 Old 07-18-2011, 04:37 PM Thread Starter
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I remember reading, in more than one place, that the "long" change from 1st to 2nd is where a lot of problems occur. I can't remember the technical reasons for it.

Thanks for that link Lucille - very interesting indeed - Zeroshift vs. DCT. I do have an ulterior motive for the DCT questions - the look of the new VFR is growing on me. I doubt I would go for it, but I ain't gettin any younger either.

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post #18 of 33 Old 07-18-2011, 05:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mambomonster View Post
the look of the new VFR is growing on me. I doubt I would go for it.
Agreed, I think it looks better in person then in the pictures. I took one for a ride on a Honda test ride about a month ago and man, that torque is awesome! I have quite alot of time on my fathers ST1300 and it's smooth and has quite abit of torque, but that VFR makes it seem like a 600cc in the torque department.

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post #19 of 33 Old 07-18-2011, 05:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cmurphy84 View Post
Right, wrong, or indifferent...I clutch between 1 and 2 then don't use my clutch after that while upshifting. I always use the clutch to downshift.
Same. Although I do occasionally speed shift down. Perfect RPM's (at least on my bike) are right around 3k, with just a little blip.

Guys give me funny looks when I do it with my left hand off the clutch, lol!!!

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post #20 of 33 Old 07-18-2011, 05:24 PM
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ya the big difference in rpm change between 1st n 2nd is where you will hurt the transmission the most by not using a clutch... the other gears not so much, but even then doing clutchless upshifts you are banging metal on metal pretty hard... like i stated, we arnt racing our 919's... use the clutch, n never have to worry bout ur transmission.

tho i will state that if you do it right with the proper blip of the throttle theres almost zero banging of metal... its like floating the gears on a semi truck... perfect rev matching n u wont have to use the clutch.

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post #21 of 33 Old 07-18-2011, 05:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mambomonster View Post
the look of the new VFR is growing on me. I doubt I would go for it, but I ain't gettin any younger either.
Your not getting any younger go for it!!!!!!!!!

I love the looks of the new VFR. However, no gear driven cams and no clutch lever (DCT) Not a true VFR or bike....... Just kidding. New technology is good in bikes.

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post #22 of 33 Old 07-23-2011, 02:19 PM
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The "Shift assist" on the K 1300 S BMW works with a "Hall effect " switch. Basically a small but strong magnet causes a change in electrical current within the switch which is picked up by the ECM. This will cause a Hiccup in the ignition as well as in the fuel injection as the up-shift happens. As quick as it happens, it's over. Sounds sweet when you do it !! It'll work at any throttle position from barely accelerating to WOT. If you do it in the "power band" you better be hangin on real good.
Love the funny looks I get when I wave with my left hand and shift at the same time

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post #23 of 33 Old 07-31-2011, 01:01 PM Thread Starter
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I have been catching up on three months' worth of Cycle World after being out of the country. The July issue, pp 14-15, has a great Kevin Cameron article on Honda's Zero Shift gearbox. Cool stuff. Thanks for your comments - I like learning about this stuff. I'll be sticking to the clutch on the niner - losing a few RPMs here in Miami won't hurt me

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post #24 of 33 Old 08-01-2011, 09:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mx463 View Post
they use a "quick shift" device that momentarily cuts the engine out on up shifts and use the clutch like normal on down shifts
Correct.

Now to the 919.
An alternative to clutchless upshifts on the 919 is the following proven technique.

Keep throttle pinned.
Preload the shift lever.
Quickly dab clutch lever and add more shift lever force at same time.
You will get very reliable shifts, and less drive line shock.
I shift at indicated hi 9s, and the rev pickup during the slight clutch unloading never even gets to the limiter RPM.
This is what I use for all my track day riding.
I'm never in 1st gear other than going out of the pits and on to the track and getting up to speed, and for that shift I use a classic clutch and throttle cut method, which I would still use even if it was a full on start. This because of the 1-2 shift tranny crashes some others have referred to re the 1-2 shift

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post #25 of 33 Old 08-01-2011, 09:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 07919Dave View Post
So why clutch inbetween 1 and 2nd and not the rest? I use both methods but clutchless is MUCH smoother.
I haven't been able to make smooth clutchless shifts from 1 to 2. I don't know if it is the jump over neutral, or the seemingly wider ratio jump from 1 to 2 versus the rest of the gears. I just know it feels better to use the clutch.

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post #26 of 33 Old 08-01-2011, 10:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cmurphy84 View Post
I haven't been able to make smooth clutchless shifts from 1 to 2. I don't know if it is the jump over neutral, or the seemingly wider ratio jump from 1 to 2 versus the rest of the gears. I just know it feels better to use the clutch.
The 919 has over a 38 % change in ratio, between 1 & 2, plus needing the longest travel to execute while passing through neutral.

True, a bike like a GSXR will have around 35 % between 1 & 2, but a Honda 919 gearbox simply does not shift like a GSXR gearbox.

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post #27 of 33 Old 08-01-2011, 04:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cmurphy84 View Post
I haven't been able to make smooth clutchless shifts from 1 to 2. I don't know if it is the jump over neutral, or the seemingly wider ratio jump from 1 to 2 versus the rest of the gears. I just know it feels better to use the clutch.
Same here. 50 / 50 shot; If I don't get it, I usually get a nice WHEEEEEE of RPM's as I've just revved in neutral, lol...

That's why I usually use full clutch in the 1-2.

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post #28 of 33 Old 08-01-2011, 04:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by g00gl3it View Post
Same here. 50 / 50 shot; If I don't get it, I usually get a nice WHEEEEEE of RPM's as I've just revved in neutral, lol...

That's why I usually use full clutch in the 1-2.
Do you really mean full clutch lever movement, or something less ?
I'm using a F4i mounting post and CRG lever set to # 1, and use a half or touch more on the 1-2.
A full lever would be excessive and take excessive time as well.
And the more time taken, the greater the chance of a screw up because of the timing co-ordination needed for the shift lever.
I found my upshifts were rather poor and unreliable until I started pre-loading the shift lever.

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post #29 of 33 Old 08-01-2011, 08:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mcromo44 View Post
Do you really mean full clutch lever movement, or something less ?
I'm using a F4i mounting post and CRG lever set to # 1, and use a half or touch more on the 1-2.
A full lever would be excessive and take excessive time as well.
And the more time taken, the greater the chance of a screw up because of the timing co-ordination needed for the shift lever.
I found my upshifts were rather poor and unreliable until I started pre-loading the shift lever.
+1 I usually preload the shifter also, but one problem I find is that when I preload I sometimes get ahead of myself and don't fully release the shift lever. When this happens I usually find there is "no gear" when I try to upshift again as the lever moves up but doesn't grab a gear. I believe what is happening is it is like a ratcheting wrench and I did not release it to grab the "next tooth" to upshift to the next gear. I have yet to have this happen when I fully take my foot away from the shifter after each shifts.

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post #30 of 33 Old 08-01-2011, 09:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by undercover919 View Post
+1 I usually preload the shifter also, but one problem I find is that when I preload I sometimes get ahead of myself and don't fully release the shift lever. When this happens I usually find there is "no gear" when I try to upshift again as the lever moves up but doesn't grab a gear. I believe what is happening is it is like a ratcheting wrench and I did not release it to grab the "next tooth" to upshift to the next gear. I have yet to have this happen when I fully take my foot away from the shifter after each shifts.
You nailed it, which is why a full release of the shift lever after each upshift is needed.
I drop my boot down then bring it back up to preload for the next one.
Same re downshifts, as in fully release to allow the ratchet to work.
A blown downshift is far worse on a track than a blown upshift is.
A false neutral in a turn is rather ungood.

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post #31 of 33 Old 08-01-2011, 10:06 PM
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Anyone who has ridden earley model Beemers is quite familiar with the "preload the shifter"method, which was standard operateing procedure.
If I tried shifting my '72 /5 without first preloading the shiffter it sounded
as if the tranny was going to tear itself apart. Haven't tried it much on
the 919, but maybe I could relearn that habit. I have also reversed my
shift pattern, which would make it less likely for a person to hold the lever
in the preloaded position, as undercover919 stated has happened to him.

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post #32 of 33 Old 08-04-2011, 05:59 PM
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Thanks to threads like this, I have begun power shifting. I have actually gotten to the point where I've become quite lazy in using the clutch and it is indeed faster. I feel comfortable using it when quick shifts are needed such as pulling out into traffic on the highway which I do on a daily basis. I'm hoping it doesn't damage the transmission, but I guess we will see. Once I start something easier, I almost never go back.

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post #33 of 33 Old 08-06-2011, 07:19 AM
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when i used to race i did the let off a tiny bit and shift for upshifting, since those days quick shifters have come out and i had one on my gsxr 1000 and damn that was nice full throttle upshifts you never let off the gas just flick the lever. also the majority of racers use GP shift pattern which is reverse of the normal street bike. instead of pulling up to up shift you just tap down, very nice for exiting a corner leaned over so you dont have to get your foot under the lever, and much easyer to just tap down while under full power.

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