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Looking For More Info On Downshifting


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hi guys i'm a begginer rider hoping to hit a trackday sometime this year, i've been reading books on the subject and i really struggling with the downshifting and throttle blipping from a top speed run. My timing is a mess to say the least, i see that keith has a device that seems to help a great deal on this very specific subject, do you know if there's a video on this problem area, (or maybe a video from another site or place that shows how to do it)

 

I tend to learn a lot better and a lot faster thru a video than reading about it, so if anyone can lend a hand , your help will be kindly appreciated. and thanks in advance.

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When you say you have a problem with your timing what do you mean? Is it you have a problem with the downshifts or the clutch realease or blipping? If you can explain the problem in a bit more detail i'm sure someone will help. What bike are you riding, and i take it that it doesn't have a slipper clutch.

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thanks for the reply, when i'm coming from a long straight or fast part i need to apply hard brakes and at the same time go down 3 to 4 gears, it's here where all my timing is off sometimes i get jerkiness when i blip the throttle other times engine braking and next time i apply way too much brakes when i try to blip. btw yamaha 600 02

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The best thing to do is learn/practice matching revs for downshifts by blipping the throttle first. Then, after you have that down, learn/practice doing it with the front brake. The trick is to slide your fingers over the brake lever to maintain even brake pressure while blipping.

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thanks for the reply, when i'm coming from a long straight or fast part i need to apply hard brakes and at the same time go down 3 to 4 gears, it's here where all my timing is off sometimes i get jerkiness when i blip the throttle other times engine braking and next time i apply way too much brakes when i try to blip. btw yamaha 600 02

 

pull in the clutch 2 fingers on brake lever 2 left on throttle, blip open between gears engaging every gear as you go! (try utube for videos)

you have said that you are a new rider, I wonder if you are spending to much atention on this!

first of all is your back wheel actually locking and hoping when you are approaching turn in as this if your inexperienced will fire up every SR in the book, it sounds like your charging the cornerI would suggest slowing down earlier on the approach to the corner and actually work on the corners themselfs, as a first time trackdayer and a new rider you will go alot faster doing this than any time you make on the brakes. its also alot more fun than frantically grabing at brakes and bliping throttle then ending up going to slow at turn in, I know this as its something I used to do myself,

 

for your first trackday try setting your entry speed with little or no brakes and work on the corners themselfs, learn the track, even just use 2 or 3 gears aviod trying to go flat out up the straightaway, anyone can go fast in a straight line. its the guys that can go fast in the turns that can make a living doing it.

sorry for going a little of subject here but I feel that there are alot of other things you will benefit from mastering before this!

I am not an expert or a racer Iride for fun mostly on road with a few trackdays throughout the year this is only my opinion as I have been guilty of charging turns in the past. hopefully someone with more experience can give you the advice you need.

 

oh yeah and welcome to the forum!

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...coming from a long straight or fast part i need to apply hard brakes and at the same time go down 3 to 4 gears...
Says it all. Dropping from sixth to second (4 gears) or from fifth to second (3 gears) after "hard brakes" sounds more like a race track environment than a public road situation; that's a lot of work in a very short period of time.

There has been some good advice offered here already; what I would add is to take this exercise in much smaller steps, dropping one gear or two and to separate the braking from the equation until you have better throttle control. I would also suggest that you use your brakes to drop your speed BEFORE you do your blipping and down shifting. Once you get more proficient in these separate steps, you can bring the steps closer to each other until it all becomes second nature. Trying to learn these all at once is IMHO a recipe for trouble.

 

Kevin Kane

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Braking and downshifting is the single most complicated action of motorcycle riding, and some just give up when they don't get it correct. But...it's a good skill to master, where for street or track riding. Let us know how you progress on this.

 

It looks like the control trainer has had some progress, hopfully its going to be going up to Laguna for our booth there at the GP. If you didn't know, that is its purpose--to train the different shifting and braking skills: brakding and downshifting, clutchless upshifting, and clutchless downshifting.

 

Cobie

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Braking and downshifting is the single most complicated action of motorcycle riding, and some just give up when they don't get it correct. But...it's a good skill to master, where for street or track riding. Let us know how you progress on this.

 

It looks like the control trainer has had some progress, hopfully its going to be going up to Laguna for our booth there at the GP. If you didn't know, that is its purpose--to train the different shifting and braking skills: brakding and downshifting, clutchless upshifting, and clutchless downshifting.

 

Cobie

 

 

Cobie,

 

I see you mention clutchless shifts. Now i normally do clutchless upshifts (after first to second as crossing neutral tends to be a bit of a jerky shift on both my bikes) however I have never tried or even contemplated clutchless downshifts. Is this something you are looking at teaching accross the board or just with slipper clutches and/or with quick shifters?

 

Rich

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Cobie,

 

I see you mention clutchless shifts. Now i normally do clutchless upshifts (after first to second as crossing neutral tends to be a bit of a jerky shift on both my bikes) however I have never tried or even contemplated clutchless downshifts. Is this something you are looking at teaching accross the board or just with slipper clutches and/or with quick shifters?

 

Rich

 

Hi Rich,

 

Clutchless downshifts can be done, any sportbike that I have ridden, it's been no problem. I have done it on other bikes, cruisers and such, in some cases not as easy, larger flywheel?.

 

I don't use the clutch at all, up or down, after letting it out in first. We can train riders on it, there are some do's and don't to it though. The timing on it is the hardest part for many to get, especially when learning how to do it with the clutch, and that's what we normally start with. Everyone shoud have that skill, though I wonder in a few years with slipper clutches and electronics that blip the throttle (GP bikes) if it'll be a skill people will need in 10 years?

 

C

 

C

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Guys thanks for all the replies and comments, i will continue working progressively on the subject i have some excellent ideas from all your post, now i have tickets for the motogp in laguna this coming week ( it's my first time watching a real gp race) and will pay a visit to the school to check the trainer and of course say HI.

 

Now i heard about a lot of things but never in either car or bikes clutchless DOWNSHIFTS, i imagine that this something that you will be able to pull with the new bikes and even than, how long before the transmission get some damage, but like i said never heard of it, i quess that this is a good topic so we can keep on learning.

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Hi Rich,

 

Clutchless downshifts can be done, any sportbike that I have ridden, it's been no problem. I have done it on other bikes, cruisers and such, in some cases not as easy, larger flywheel?.

 

I don't use the clutch at all, up or down, after letting it out in first. We can train riders on it, there are some do's and don't to it though. The timing on it is the hardest part for many to get, especially when learning how to do it with the clutch, and that's what we normally start with. Everyone shoud have that skill, though I wonder in a few years with slipper clutches and electronics that blip the throttle (GP bikes) if it'll be a skill people will need in 10 years?

 

C

 

C

 

 

I'll try it this morning. As you rightly say in a few years time the bikes will probably have it programmed into the ecu.

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Clutchless downshifts--I've been doing it steadily for some years every bike I ride and my personal coach bike, my fastest rider had done it for longer than that, no transmissioin problems, zero.

 

The mistakes that can be made are this:

 

1. Holding pressure against the shift lever for long periods of time, for no reason (some bikes it can cause damage).

2. If you get a false neutral, and the engine spins up DO NOT STOMP IT INTO GEAR. That's bad, best to pull the clutch in at that point, or get the rpms in the right range, just dont' stomp it in.

 

C

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