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Thread: Handshift Help

  1. #31
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Southwestern, PA

    Re: Handshift Help

    Quote Originally Posted by MattWalksler View Post
    A great way to learn is to start on a gradual downhill. Its a lot easier to disengage the clutch when you're rolling. This'll give you a great idea of where the friction point is at on your bike.
    This was the way I was taught and it worked great for me. Once down the hill was all it took. Make a right turn at the bottom of the hill to come back up on the first trip.
    Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power.

  2. #32

    Re: Handshift Help

    My girlfriend(wife..almost) started learning to ride the indian sport scout last year. I don't know what the best way is.. but I didn't let her ride away until she had repeated start and stop at least 30 times..just moving some inches forward each time. After this she just feathered the clutch and took off without any high rpms or clutch burning. And she remembered to disengage the clutch before stopping We need to do more practicing on shifting as soon as bike is back on the road.. and hopefully she will be starting the bike and riding on her own later this year.
    When she got on her Dnepr the other day she forgot that the dnepr was handclutch..looks like she need to ride a footclutch then

    I do ride/ have ridden bikes with different controls (harleys/indian/british/ ducati with switched shiftpattern etc).. and it takes a few moments before the brain works in automode.. Always fun when approaching an intersection, and the stupid ( ) harley clutch work the other way

  3. #33

    Re: Handshift Help

    [QUOTE=Buzz_Kanter;21936]Great advice from the gang (as usual). A couple of points I might add.

    When you practice this for the first few launches, make sure the bike is warmed up and not needing choke. Start on a nice flat level and clean parking lot with plenty of room to zoom if you need to and no gravel or dirt to deal with.

    Remember the first 10 feet are the toughest. So from a standing start, try to go just 20 feet and then stop. Then do it again, and again until it feels comfortable. Shifting from 1st to second is easy. It's the dead stop and first 10 or 20 feet that takes the practice.

    Once you have the hang of this on the level ground you will find it a lot more challanging to stat from a dead stop facing uphill (like at a red light or stop sign). But that too is a learned skill.

    If you are not getting the hang of it on the first few tries, don't worry. Simply stop, get off the bike and take 5 minutes to focus and try it again.

    Great advice! That is exactly what I did when I first got mine. I am lucky enough to have a little used road past where I live during the day. I just went out there and did a bunch of starts and stops.

  4. #34
    Join Date
    Jan 2009

    Re: Handshift Help

    I think what helped me more than anything was the time thinking about how to do it when I was off the bike after my first couple of times trying.I would picture in my mind how I should approach different situations that were normal to riding a bike like coming to and from a stop sign or stopping quickly,on a hill or slow sharp turns.the left slow turn around in the road maneuver was always the hardest for me but I found that more I thought about situations the easier they became to do.

  5. #35

    Re: Handshift Help

    Forgive me for bringing up this old subject but asides from clutch, I have doubts...

    The timing control, or the left handle control... I retard the timing to start the bike, of course, but then when it starts I advance timing to allow the bike to run better. In old cars (my real hobby), that is mostly all you do... retard timing to start and then advance it all the way for normal driving.

    However, in my 1949 HD's case, I need to be playing with it, mostly if I go slowly... I need to retard it so the bike will run smoothly, and not pulling itself a bit, and so that when I accelerate it will respond adequately. If it is too advanced, it won't accelerate properly. Let's say that if I have to accelerate from going slow, I need to move both fists or handle bar controls, at about the same time.

    Is this regular procedure or do I have something perhaps not properly adjusted on my bike?

    If I am going 'fast' with the engine at higher rpm's, I can leave the timing advanced and forget about it, but when going slow I do need to retard it or otherwise the bike will not respond.


  6. #36
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Beautiful Northern NM

    Re: Handshift Help

    That is very normal Victor, nothing to be concerned about. It is more pronounced on some engines than others depending on things like cam (valve timing) and compression ratio. In city traffic I retard the timing to eliminate chain snatch and to allow the engine to run smoothly. As I accelerate I roll both grips on.
    Friends help friends move,
    Real friends help friends move bodies!

  7. Re: Handshift Help

    Howdy chaps,

    Second what Robbie says. The more efficient an engine is the less tolerant it will be of not having ignition timing sync'd to peak cylinder pressure at any given rpm. The advance, pun intended, represented by the intro of the Knuckle and then your 49 Pan made for a power plant superior to any flathead m/c and miles ahead of any four wheel offering from Detroit at the time. Just as spring loaded bob weights in centrifugal advance distributors make for constant ignition timing changes as revs rise and fall you are encouraged to work your advance/retard regularly to put less stress on your drivetrain and maintain carbon free a combustion chambers as possible. With practice you will find where your motor does not feel labored (too retarded) while dialing out the primary chain pounding harshness that comes with too much advance at lower rpm)

  8. Re: Handshift Help

    Both hands on bars , heel then shift
    Both hands on bars , toe and throttle

  9. #39

    Re: Handshift Help

    Thanks guys! Gradually learning and enjoying the bike more and more...

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