Shifting in a turn - Kawasaki Vulcan Forum : Vulcan Forums
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post #1 of 26 (permalink) Old 04-17-2014, 09:17 PM Thread Starter
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Shifting in a turn

I've read that you want to avoid shifting in a turn because you want to keep a constant pressure and traction on the rear tire and shifting can change that and potentially cause a slide out. Now, if I'm stopped at an intersection waiting turn left, when start out from a dead stop to round the corner, I find I get about half way around before I feel the need to shift into second gear (on my VN900). Most of the time I just shift when ready. Other times I wait until I clear the corner and then shift but if I do that the engine is rev'd pretty high by the time I shift into second.

I probably need to install a new front pulley to gear down but aside from that, any recommendations on this?
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post #2 of 26 (permalink) Old 04-18-2014, 12:00 AM
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I've read that you want to avoid shifting in a turn because you want to keep a constant pressure and traction on the rear tire and shifting can change that and potentially cause a slide out. Now, if I'm stopped at an intersection waiting turn left, when start out from a dead stop to round the corner, I find I get about half way around before I feel the need to shift into second gear (on my VN900). Most of the time I just shift when ready. Other times I wait until I clear the corner and then shift but if I do that the engine is rev'd pretty high by the time I shift into second.

I probably need to install a new front pulley to gear down but aside from that, any recommendations on this?
I don't see why shifting in a turn is an issue. I do it all the time. ALOT actually, and have never had a problem.

I can accelerate through a turn and coast through a turn so I don't see how shifting in a turn makes much difference. The only danger I see in shifting through a turn would be down shifting as this would add MORE power and torque to the rear wheel possibly causing a loss of traction when twistin the right grip.
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post #3 of 26 (permalink) Old 04-18-2014, 12:00 AM
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I've read that you want to avoid shifting in a turn because you want to keep a constant pressure and traction on the rear tire and shifting can change that and potentially cause a slide out. Now, if I'm stopped at an intersection waiting turn left, when start out from a dead stop to round the corner, I find I get about half way around before I feel the need to shift into second gear (on my VN900). Most of the time I just shift when ready. Other times I wait until I clear the corner and then shift but if I do that the engine is rev'd pretty high by the time I shift into second.

I probably need to install a new front pulley to gear down but aside from that, any recommendations on this?
I would say avoid shifting in a corner from a start. It does not feel safe to me at all. Taking corners on my 900 in first gear from a stop feels fine to me. If you feel like a front pulley would help to avoid shifting in corners, then I say go for it.

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post #4 of 26 (permalink) Old 04-18-2014, 01:56 AM
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I shift in turns all the time - from a start, or otherwise. Sometimes, you really down't have any option. Smoothness is key.

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post #5 of 26 (permalink) Old 04-18-2014, 06:47 AM
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I wouldn't worry too much about shifting gears during low speed turns, but I wouldn't make a habit of it when negotiating bends. I try to be in the correct gear at the right speed and on the best approach line as I enter a curve.

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post #6 of 26 (permalink) Old 04-18-2014, 07:56 AM
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I shift in turns all the time - from a start, or otherwise. Sometimes, you really down't have any option. Smoothness is key.
Sums it up for me. I shift in turns and curves, but only when I have to, and I do it as gently and smoothly as possible.

It really only applies at low speeds for me. When cruising, the gearing of the 900 doesn't make it necessary for me to change gears at anything over 45, up or down, unless I have a real need to accelerate hard coming out of a curve. When that's the case, chances are I'd already downshifted.

Is it weird I feel my old FT500 out performs my VN900 in terms of sport driving? Kinda wish I hadn't sold it now, would like to have put a 600 jug on and made it a little streetfighter.

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post #7 of 26 (permalink) Old 04-19-2014, 12:54 PM
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I've read that you want to avoid shifting in a turn because you want to keep a constant pressure and traction on the rear tire and shifting can change that and potentially cause a slide out.



I know this particular forum is designated for new riders, but I felt I should chime in.
This quoted advice would probably apply to a GPZ Race participant during extreme lean angles. ... Also keep in mind that much of this advice comes from the various state licensing boards and handbooks that have been written by bureaucrats that have never seen a day on two wheels, ... nor will they.
In over thirty years of two wheel adventures, I have always allowed my engine to tell me when to shift, whether in a corner or otherwise. (modifying that only by my speed & the current road conditions. ... AKA judgement calls)
The mere fact that I am still here to pass this advice along, speaks volumes.
Enjoy your ride, and trust your gut!!

Last edited by JS60; 04-19-2014 at 12:59 PM.
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post #8 of 26 (permalink) Old 04-19-2014, 04:36 PM
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I shift from 1st to 2nd when I turn left at stop lights all the time and haven't had any problema

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post #9 of 26 (permalink) Old 04-19-2014, 07:27 PM
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Shifting in a turn is fine just be careful down shifting to much as your turning if you get in a too low of gear you run a risk of sliding that back tire out from under you.

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post #10 of 26 (permalink) Old 04-19-2014, 08:14 PM
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Like everyone says, keep it smooth and there won't be any problems.

I think the idea is that you are going to engine brake or add too much power all at once WHILE you are leaning hard. You shouldn't do that; but if you can lean it far enough to use most of your traction, you can probably make a smooth shift.

I might avoid it if the road is wet and you are driving on a painted stripe or other slick surface. But, shifting in a relaxed turn on dry pavement isn't going to be a problem.

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