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Do you use 1st gear in normal riding?

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I match gearing to riding speed as well....... downshift progressively when slowing for a stop. Bikes don't like skipping gears, there are no syncros.... going into first is usually bad as the ratio is very low even compared to 2nd. If the bike is slightly rollling, it will go into first easier than at a full stop. I have in a panic stop been in 4th or 5th, and when stopped, very difficult to shift down unless you can rock the bike back and forth.
Interesting. I, for instance, have a stop sign near my rural home that I'll run up to at 50 mph. I'll be rolling along in 5th gear, pull the clutch, click, click, and ease the clutch out into third. I'll use third to engine brake down to the point I'm ready for a complete stop then, clutch, click, click, and stop. Call me lazy, but I've done this for as long as I can remember.
I remember reading in several places it's not recommended to downshift thru the gears with the clutch pulled while at a stop. Ray is right with the syncro reason.
I ride in so much traffic that I'd be replacing brakes 3 times a year ;)
I make a game of not using my brakes. I've ridden with people who said they thought my brake lights were out until I actually stopped. :) I still have the original pads on front of my FJR at 96,000 miles. That wouldn't be possible in a lot of traffic, of course, but I live in a rural area and can go for miles without touching them.
 

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2007 FJR1300A
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I agree, traffic is a different situation. When coming to a stop I'll slow down and shift from 4-5 to 1st as I stop. Still, brakes are easer and cheaper than a transmission. When I was a kid I had a Yamaha 100 Scrambler twin t-stroke, my father said it had a "Glass transmission" so be gentle on it, I never was and never broke it. Maybe I'm just lazy.
I'm not particularly worried about the transmissions or clutches on my bikes. Can't say that I have ever heard of a trans failure on an FZ1 or an FJR 5 speed for that matter.
 
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2007 FJR1300A
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I make a game of not using my brakes. I've ridden with people who said they thought my brake lights were out until I actually stopped. :) I still have the original pads on front of my FJR at 96,000 miles. That wouldn't be possible in a lot of traffic, of course, but I live in a rural area and can go for miles without touching them.
Traffic is one of the easiest places to use no brakes ;) As long as you can keep some following distance and look ahead, I rarely use the brakes in heavy traffic and use first gear a whole lot as a creeper gear during rush hour. My game is to see how long I can go without having to put a foot down.
 

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Is your ZRX and 1100 or 1200? Stock geared?



Yeah. I don't take off in 2nd intentionally, but occasionally I'll take off and just realize that was second. I have taken off in 3rd; that's possible but it doesn't work so well. :)
ZRX is a 1200 with header and jet kit and yes on all 3 bikes I have downshifted to what I thought was 1st but was not or I fergetted completely to downshift.
 

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I'm a firm believer in getting the most use out of anything. I figure they put 1st gear in the bike, I'm going to use the hell out of it. :cool:
Seriously though, I use 1st for take off. I get the RPMs up a bit before shifting to 2nd. Just the way I ride. I don't normally use 1st to engine brake, but will if needed. I also engine brake A LOT, just depends if I use 1st for that or not.
For the poster that said Brakes are to slow the bike, not gears. That's not how I ride. I am no racer by any means. But I DO enjoy some spirited riding in the twisties. I read an article, I think by Keith Code, oh, prolly 15 + yrs ago. He talked about setting up the bike's suspension BEFORE entering the corner. So that is what I try to do. I try to get into a bit of a lower gear for the corner and then use RPMs to adjust my cornering speed and try to avoid brakes all together while IN the corner. But, that's just me.
For the Poster that said they try not to use the brakes, that some thought his brake lights were out. I think that is called the "Pace" and I believe that was also by Keith Code. :)
 

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Rarely downshift into 1st unless I鈥檓 in traffic and speeds that need 1st. Always use it to start off with though.

You鈥檙e also missing 1 option, I want to start off in first and sometimes find myself in 3rd gear or worse! :)

Forget to click, click into 1st while stopped. It only takes a second to realize the mistake then the bike lugs out and I either slap my foot back down to catch myself if I am turning or feather the clutch. Then wonder how many riders in cagers just watched me do that :/ Always a bit embarrassing even if I鈥檓 the only one that knows I did it.
 
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If only there was some sort of indication of what gear you are in ;)
Right?!? Never had a gear indicator on any bike and it鈥檚 still not in my DNA to look at it :rolleyes:
 
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