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Old 05-12-2010, 05:57 PM   #391
Jofaba
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If the clutch was a foreign language, then today I discovered the Rosetta Stone. I finally started to "get it" practicing in the driveway after work today. Instead of increasing the throttle as I let off the clutch, I gave it the throttle I wanted to be once the clutch would be released, and then worked my way into that by very slowly releasing the clutch. It was almost like once you hit the friction zone the throttle and clutch switch jobs for a second.

I still can only do it very slowly with quite a bit of attention being paid, but now that I "get it" it feels like I should have the basics down within another day or two and feel comfortable enough to hit some roads with traffic by the weekend.

Thanks to everyone's suggestions and advice. It's amazing how much progress I've made since Sunday =)
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Old 05-13-2010, 06:32 PM   #392
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Well, I've come no where near "mastering" that service road, but I've done pretty much all I can on it. Time to start getting some real world experience. If the weather is good, I'm going to venture out into town tomorrow. I feel confident enough to take it slow and calculated.

Question; as you know I'm very nervous about hurting my bike with all this trial and error. What kind of mistakes would cause real issues, and how would I know there was an issue? One thing that concerns me is how the higher gears sound. I don't know if they sound normal and I'm just now noticing it because as I become comfortable with the other aspects, I'm opening my senses up to more and more. Say, for example, I DID hurt my transmission at some point. Would I hear a problem first, or would I experience it?

Thanks again to all the help and advice. It's because of this conversation that I've progressed as much as I have.
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Old 05-13-2010, 06:50 PM   #393
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Question; as you know I'm very nervous about hurting my bike with all this trial and error. What kind of mistakes would cause real issues, and how would I know there was an issue? One thing that concerns me is how the higher gears sound.
What would really hurt your bike is downshifting at too high a speed and having the engine seize up. Again, a good reason to bleed speed with the brakes and with the engine until the just before the bike begins to lug, and then downshift.
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Old 05-23-2010, 03:30 PM   #394
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I deleted the rest of the post. It's the same rant that I've posted here before. Blah blah blah, gearing is insanely low, blah blah blah, I'm starting to hate the bike. I'll get over it. I just don't see how this gearing makes sense in anyone's eyes.

I mean come on, when the light turns green I have to be in third gear by the time I'm riding under it or I have no power and it sounds like I'm on a race track. It's just starting to feel like one of two things is coming down the road; either I'm going to start despising the bike or I'm going to destroy it. Or both I guess is also an option.

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Old 05-23-2010, 04:37 PM   #395
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I deleted the rest of the post. It's the same rant that I've posted here before. Blah blah blah, gearing is insanely low, blah blah blah, I'm starting to hate the bike. I'll get over it. I just don't see how this gearing makes sense in anyone's eyes.

I mean come on, when the light turns green I have to be in third gear by the time I'm riding under it or I have no power and it sounds like I'm on a race track. It's just starting to feel like one of two things is coming down the road; either I'm going to start despising the bike or I'm going to destroy it. Or both I guess is also an option.
Don't sweat it. There are training suggestions that the MSF offer, but then again, they are only suggestions. If you bike is geared that low, and it were my bike, I would just shift up through gears as appropriate -- even if it means upshifting while accelerating through an intersection.
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Old 05-23-2010, 05:55 PM   #396
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I just found a website dedicated to this particular model and registered so I can bug the right people. It's selfish of me to continuously rant and dominate the past few pages of this thread, especially since most people here are riding much larger displacement bikes. I'm not going anywhere, I just think it's more appropriate to bug a room full of people riding the same bike.

That said, it looks like a very common upgrade that nearly everyone there has done is to change their gearing ratio to make more sense of the spread, so I guess it's not just me after all =P

Thanks Dr for all your help and I plan to be here quite often once I get my sheet together.
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Old 05-23-2010, 06:01 PM   #397
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I just found a website dedicated to this particular model and registered so I can bug the right people. It's selfish of me to continuously rant and dominate the past few pages of this thread, especially since most people here are riding much larger displacement bikes. I'm not going anywhere, I just think it's more appropriate to bug a room full of people riding the same bike.

That said, it looks like a very common upgrade that nearly everyone there has done is to change their gearing ratio to make more sense of the spread, so I guess it's not just me after all =P

Thanks Dr for all your help and I plan to be here quite often once I get my sheet together.
Sure thing! Also, as new problems or questions crop up, feel free to start a new thread in the appropriate forum. Looking forward to more posts!
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Old 05-23-2010, 06:12 PM   #398
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Definitely, and I feel a bit like a dope for starting out here with my little b****fest. I'm just frustrated with myself. I've been on two wheels (moped) for a year now exactly, and will be 2 wheels for life. My moped is now my bad weather vehicle. I do love my Virago. I think I'm just frustrated with myself that the learning curve is so much higher than I thought it'd be. I really wish I had the money and opportunity to take the beginners class before ever even hopping on my new bike. It really pains me to be putting it through so much needless unintended abuse.

I'll be here often once I've gotten myself dried off behind the ears.
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Old 05-24-2010, 07:48 PM   #399
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I mean come on, when the light turns green I have to be in third gear by the time I'm riding under it or I have no power and it sounds like I'm on a race track. It's just starting to feel like one of two things is coming down the road; either I'm going to start despising the bike or I'm going to destroy it. Or both I guess is also an option.
Most any bike would need to shift while crossing an average intersection. I ride a 1300 v-4 and often in 3rd gear by time I get across some of the larger ones, but sure, I could hang on 1st gear through it, roaring & revving, but I usually shift early anyway unless I forsee needing the power.

Also most any manual tranny car, you'd shift before getting to the far side of the intersection. And your bike should have a rev limiter, I'd say shifting 5-8 MPH before letting it kick in aint too bad.
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Old 05-24-2010, 09:30 PM   #400
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Most any bike would need to shift while crossing an average intersection. I ride a 1300 v-4 and often in 3rd gear by time I get across some of the larger ones, but sure, I could hang on 1st gear through it, roaring & revving, but I usually shift early anyway unless I forsee needing the power.

Also most any manual tranny car, you'd shift before getting to the far side of the intersection. And your bike should have a rev limiter, I'd say shifting 5-8 MPH before letting it kick in aint too bad.
well hell, maybe it's just a splash of cold water in my face in the middle of December. I'll be 29 in a few weeks and this is my first standard vehicle. I just never considered the concept of 1st gear being such a starting block instead of having it's own useful range. Guy at work says his Harley can take him to 90 in 2nd gear (to be honest this guy is a yarn spinner and I don' believe that for a second) but i should say that Dr's advice in the previous posts made me go and push my bike today instead of babying it and I had a phenomenally easier and smoother range transition throughout the day.

It's so weird how doing things that are so contradictory to what feels right, is the right way to do things on a motorcycle. Want to turn left? Push with your left arm. Want to slow down? Hit the throttle for a second. Want to ease into a higher gear with a lower rev? Rev up on the previous gear.
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