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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
From the operators manual. What? Any clarification?

Recommended Shift Points
Shifting Up
From 1st to 2nd 12 mph (20 km/h)
From 2nd to 3rd 19 mph (30 km/h)
From 3rd to 4th 25 mph (40 km/h)
From 4th to 5th 31 mph (50 km/h)
From 5th to 6th 37 mph (60 km/h)
Shifting Down
From 6th to 5th 28 mph (45 km/h)
From 5th to 4th 22 mph (35 km/h)
From 4th to 3rd 16 mph (25 km/h)...
 

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Just forget all that gobble de **** and ride it to suit your own style naturally.

That sort of info creates accidents because riders take it literally and are too busy looking at their gauges rather than the road ahead!
 

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I agree w/ Kiwi. Over time, you'll start getting more in touch with the bike. You'll know when to shift up & down naturally w/o even thinking twice about it.
 

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Ignore it. There are no fixed 'shift points'. If you're in no hurry, it's fine to shift early, if you're in a hurry, shifting at higher revs is the way to achieve maximum acceleration. You will learn where to shift pretty quickly and, as I say, it will depend on how you're riding. No biggie.

The only things you need to avoid are changing way too early and then opening the throttle wide so that the engine stutters and struggles, or taking rpm so high that you're frequently bouncing off the rev limiter before changing. Pretty much anywhere in between is fine.

Racers and experienced riders looking for optimum speed will pay much more attention to shift points, but it's not vital on the road.
 

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yeah those points are just guidelines. just listen and feel the bike, it'll be totally natural after a very short period of time. upshift to early, the engine will bog out. upshift too late, it'll make a lotta racket. downshift too early, and you might lock up the rear wheel. downshift too late, well, it'll probably stall if you let the rpms drop too low.
 

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these sort of reference points can only be guides for
novice riders who have no understanding or
riding experience..

this is just an easy to remember sequence, more for
the intellect than giving ongoing attention to
the speedo while riding on the roads..

for inital practice rides etc, honda wants to give
very conservative relative speed goals..
imagine if advice was to change in each gear
at say 7,500rpm where hp is generated..
an open door to law suits..

seems obvious but novices must direct attention
to the road and potential dangers directly ahead
and surrounding circumstances/situations..

for any rider,, taking eyes and visual attention
away from whatever you are riding into
even for a few moments, can be fatal..

for novices and anyone else seeking practice
in gear changing including speeds etc,
always best to practice away from traffic,
somewhere quiet and free from distractions
and other dangers..
then,, use that practice and the habits it has
generated riding on the roads and in traffic,
without needing to take your attention
away from riding to changing numbers
on your speedometer...

doesnt take long at all to become familiar
with speeds in gears and relative revs..
your tachometer needle will be easy to see
with the briefest of glances when its at
around 12 oclock, its most obvious
position within your visual field,
which corresponds to good efficient
power for general riding speeds..

after a while ongoing adaptions to
conditions will happen automatically
or easily within or around that
easy rev range..

practice as usual being the key
to efficient effective riding skills..
 

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I listen to my bike. And it depends on how im riding that day. More times than none, I'm just shifting based on RPMs. Sometimes I shift in the lower range, sometimes in the higher range.
Its a feeling. A feeling will allow you to react faster than any other sense. From a Martial Arts reference, you want to make a connection to your opponent or partner, in order to feel an energy and how it is going to react. This way, you can react to oppose or follow that energy. It is no different with anything else, your bike included.
 

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From the operators manual. What? Any clarification?

Recommended Shift Points
Shifting Up
From 1st to 2nd 12 mph (20 km/h)
From 2nd to 3rd 19 mph (30 km/h)
From 3rd to 4th 25 mph (40 km/h)
From 4th to 5th 31 mph (50 km/h)
From 5th to 6th 37 mph (60 km/h)
Shifting Down
From 6th to 5th 28 mph (45 km/h)
From 5th to 4th 22 mph (35 km/h)
From 4th to 3rd 16 mph (25 km/h)...
Its all about the feel. Like feel the force young skywalker feel the force.:D
 

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It's a feel, but it's not a bad guideline for a beginner. I find anywhere between 5-7000 rpm. Below 4k and the engine will chug a little, over 7000 and you must be winding it out anyway.

It may just be me, but the bike doesn't really like to be short shifted.
 

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The numbers from the Owner's Manual is just a reference. I would say from my own riding experience, I do match it pretty closely, but that's just because my riding style is rather conservative and more geared towards fuel economy. I get about 70 mpg riding like that, and I never really rev very high in city traffic. I typically keep the engine in the 4k-5k range most of the time. I typically downshift below 3500 rpms, and upshift just before 6000 rpms when the tank starts to vibrate.

I will usually go into a lower gear and let the rpms rise when going uphill or taking tight corners.

A good practice is to shift by listening to the engine rather than looking at the tachometer or speedo, but sometimes I'll find myself looking on windy days when I can't hear the engine.
 

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Just forget all that gobble de **** and ride it to suit your own style naturally.

That sort of info creates accidents because riders take it literally and are too busy looking at their gauges rather than the road ahead!
Seconded. Ride it as you feel comfortable with, that doesn't put you in danger or creates a hazard for other road users!

I let my bike rev slightly high in 3rd, 4th, 5th before slipping up a gear, but it's down to your confidence & skill (& possibly what you've been taught). :)
 

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I go by the sound of the bike. Different rpm range for different riding conditions. But when on the straight roads about 6000 to 7000 rpm. The bike is good for that.
 

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Let's say you're stuck behind a really slow truck, and you don't want to stay in first gear;
what would you say would be the earliest shifting points without stalling the engine?

Like going really slow,
would you say you don't want to go below 2k rpm, 2.5k, 3k rpm?
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I was not asking because I need advice on how to shift. I wondered if anyone knew or had a theory as to why the owner manual gives these figures instead of real-world numbers. The top set (shifting up) would perhaps be what Honda thinks are MINIMUM speeds for upshift so that the bike will not lug under acceleration. The bottom set likewise, minimum speed to leave in the higher gear before downshifting - again to avoid lugging. None of these figures are any guide for optimum max rev's. I think the responses here show that this is situation-dependent and I agree. I was just questioning what appears to be misleading recommendations and I hope new riders will not be shifting (up or down) with such low rev's. I get my 'F this week and will soon know the bike and have internalized the shift points based not on road speed so much as tachometer and "feel".
 

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Myself..I think that Honda states these RPM figures in the owner's manual to basically cover their own butt in the event of a Consumer getting hurt in some way while riding. Same as the printed "break in" procedure for new motorcycles.

I remember years go I had a friend who bought a used motorcycle (Suzuki GS 750) and complained that it had no power. He was new to motorcycling and had no real experience and read in the owners manual about recommended shift points. Turns out he was riding up steep hills in my Town in 5th gear at 50 KMH and had no acceleration. ( Go figure!) He was afraid of revving up the engine thinking he would "hurt" it.

He eventually sold the bike to another friend of mine who proceeded to take the bike out of the highway (after warm up) and ran the snot out of it. That poor engine needed it's lungs cleaned out.

Ride your bike and shift WITH OUT lugging the engine...you will be fine...:)
 

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as to 'why honda does it', the brain [of novices etc
will respond to input as to numbers [gears, revs, speed etc]
with curiosity or questions as to what, gear/revs/speed etc..
honda in its owner manual gives 'something' relevant
in response to that predictable question..

notice it goes up in steps of 10..
this is easily assimilated by brain as something
easy to ingest and understand, uncomplicated etc,
thus answers the enquiry with something
more or less relevant to reality..

obviously, on general road networks worldwide
where honda riders ride and gain experience etc,
the range of possible experiences is boundless
and would not be that simplistic 10kph sequence..

but it gives them something to start with..
the idea of regular sequencing, for eg..
which is valid and will become whatever
brain experiences on real roads in the real world..

brain makes adjustments, to realities..
honda knows novice riders brains
will make the adjustments relative to
their little routes in their part of the world..

it also serves as a stimulator for, the question..
whether learning to ride totally alone
or with input from family/friends/instructors etc,
the question itself will attract responses,,
as it has here and otherwise..

all praise to Honda
and her wisdom...
 

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on 'being stuck behind a really slow truck' and shifting points
'not wanting to stay in first'..

trucks are obstacles, taking up road space and vision..
firstly, dont ride 'up his arse', rather drop back..
that way you can better see whats ahead,
for your overtake..

if theres a truck ahead, dont ride up close to him..
stay back within your less restricted motorcycle space
and make decisions from that better situation..

at super 'really slow speed' you will be in traffic
or gridlocked on a highway, either way your best
option is to move into free space, by overtaking
or 'filtering' in the motorcycle space between lanes..

if a novice or not comfortable with overtakes
still maintain a good space between youself
and the truck.. at 'really slow speed' they can still
stop suddenly,, and if close up you cant see
whats happening ahead [to cause braking]..

at 'really slow speeds' you will be in first or second
anyway, so shift points are not a factor..
in slow traffic etc situations second is ok
until slow walking pace..
when it becomes a matter of clutch
and throttle control, with trail braking..

practicing [somewhere quiet] at very slow speeds
becomes more a matter of balance and steering
with clutch/throttle/brake coordination..
and it will be in first gear..

very slow speeds downslope doesnt require throttle,
whereas the same upslope needs higher revs
fed in thru clutch as necessary..

at very slow speeds in first or second no need for
high revs to move your slow moving mass..
practicing very slow riding, even a few times,
will show you what revs are appropriate..
forget about ideas of specific revs..

for novices, trucks, buses and vans
take away your vital forward vision,
necessary for preparations for
adjusting speed or position within
traffic flows etc..
see them as firstly an obstacle, like any
obstacle, then as a potential tool
as an obstacle to other vehicles..

busses for eg while massive obstacles
can also be used as blockers against
cars when following them thru
roundabouts etc..
[like a cattle dog on the heels of
a large bull]
 

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Notice how they recommend using a hi-rev engine at regular, almost car-like gearshifts?

It's a good start. As a general rule of the thumb, try accelerating from 3k rpm in final gear, then 2.5k, then 2k.
Where ever the engine does weird (vibrate, makes noise, or doesn't accelerate smooth anymore), take that plus about 200 to 500rpm extra, and set that as your low point.
If it's doing funny at 2200rpm, then don't ride, or accelerate the bike below 2500rpm, but downshift.

If you need to accelerate faster, stay longer in gear (rev it higher), but don't let the needle get close to the redline!
Though the bike is rev limited, it's just good practice to never hit the redline.

If you are stuck behind a slow accelerating truck, it might even be ok to shift around the 2500rpm point. (Higher if your bike lugs around that rpm range).

I usually switch gears where the engine feels smoothest.
 

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Geez I just tend to shift around 4500-5500rpm all the time. In case I need to make a quick change or get away I don't have to downshift and waste time. I can just hit the gas and I am in a decent powerband already. To me, it's the same as staying in 1st gear at a stoplight etc.
btw I check my mpg at every fillup and it is always 70-75ish mpg. Stop and go town traffic, no highway
 
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