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Thunderbird Cruiser Chat Cruiser chat for the the Thunderbird twin

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Old 10-30-2012, 08:04 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Revving it up!

Shifting down the gears on a ride coming to a stop... Do any of you give the throttle a twist each time you shift down gears?
I hear a lot of guys giving the bike a quick rev each time they are shifting down gears. I don't do it, but thinking maybe I should be?? Twisting the throttle on my Storm for a quick rev, let's out a bit of noise with my Foran pipes.
Should I be doing this 'extra rev' and if so, does it benefit the bike in anyway??
Thanks in advance.


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Old 10-30-2012, 08:25 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I never do. I can't conceive of what benefit that would have...in fact, it would seem harder on the engine since it's engine braking on a higher rev so has to work harder to bring the rev down...might even cause lurching as it tries to do so, I would think.
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Old 10-30-2012, 08:42 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I never do. I can't conceive of what benefit that would have...in fact, it would seem harder on the engine since it's engine braking on a higher rev so has to work harder to bring the rev down...might even cause lurching as it tries to do so, I would think.
Actually, rev matching is specifically done to avoid causing a lurch. Any racer will do it as a matter of course. Heck, some 'smart' flappy paddle gearboxes in cars can even do it now.

It used to be a rite of passage among sports car drivers to learn to toe-and-heal downshift - this is a technique allowing you to use you left foot to work the clutch and your right to work the brake while at the same time giving a little blip to the throttle during each downshift to insure a smooth, lurch-free engagement of the clutch. The last thing you want going hard into a corner is a sudden lurch from the rear wheel(s) - good way to end up in the ditch. Of course these days few people know how to do it in a car as many modern manual transmissions are good enough to let you 'cheat' a bit. On a bike, you're doing the same sort of thing only using your right hand to simultaneously brake and blip the throttle.

It's not really a big deal if you're just cruising around. You have time to gently let out the clutch and let the inertia of the tranny/rear wheel bring the engine up to a matching speed. But if you're pressing on, rev matching allows you to get the clutch out quicker without causing a lurch as the engine tries to come up to the speed of the lower gear.

It's actually easier (and smoother) on the equipment to do it than not to do it with any manual transmission, car or bike. If you had a non-syncro trans, you'd HAVE to do it to shift.

I had to learn it when I was racing an Alfa - the syncros simply weren't strong enough to let you downshift at all under race circumstances or even when pressing on at a brisk street pace. It eventually became second-nature. So yes, I do it on the bike as well.
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Last edited by zelatore; 10-30-2012 at 08:49 PM.
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Old 10-30-2012, 08:49 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I tend to do that because it just comes naturally and i think why is because when you downshift it sorta softens the "blow" of the engine jerking quickly to a lower RPM. And it smooths downshifting. But lately i've been stopping differently to try and save the rear tire so i haven't been doing that as often, which in the past was always.
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Old 10-30-2012, 10:10 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Actually, rev matching . . . bring the engine up to a matching speed.
I guess I was envisioning a heavier throttle blip...if one is just matching the rev, I suppose I can see where there might be a benefit. I'm still not going to do it, but I did learn something new.
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Old 10-30-2012, 11:52 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Yup. What zelatore and dazco said ... PLUS, I like to hear my Hog Slayers ...
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Old 10-31-2012, 01:28 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Looking all this up, I find that motorcycles don't have synchro. But you don't need to double clutch like old cars. The oldest standard I had was a 62 Falcon. Pretty sure it was synchro.

Can anyone explain the transmission on motorcycles?
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Old 10-31-2012, 01:44 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Your Falcon would have been a syncro transmission - pretty much every passenger car has been since...well, a long time! (post war?-not sure exactly)

I've rebuilt a few automotive gearboxes but never done One on a bike. So far as I know, they work on magic and pixie dust...
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Old 10-31-2012, 07:20 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Hey thanks guys for all your input. I really learnt something and it will be something I may start to do. Bigguy 82... I also like your truthful reason for doing it, my mate has the same pipes and they do sound great. My Foren Razorback pipes sound amazing and love the sound of them. I'm sure by starting to double clutch... Every car/rider around me will like the sound aswell!!!


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Old 10-31-2012, 01:59 PM   #10 (permalink)
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If you start doing it, the idea is to match the engine revs to what they will be when you are in the next lower gear. I don't know the ratios or typical RPM on a T-bird, but lets say you are slowing down and at 2000 rpm in 4th; at that same speed in 3rd you might be at 3000 rpm, so you would blip the throttle up to (well, slightly above as the engine will slow down a bit before you get the clutch back out) 3000 rpm. Overdoing it is no better than not doing it at all.

But on the street, yeah, it mostly just sounds cool....
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