If you’d told me when I bought my Yamaha R6 – way back in 2003 – that one day I’d want a gear indicator, I’d have said you were crazy. However, years of having them on bikes that I have tested have worn me down, and now I’ve gotten accustomed to taking a quick glance if I’m ever unsure of my gear.
So, I placed a call to Blue Monkey Motorsports, which just so happens to be the U.S. distributor of HealTech products, and inquired about whether they had the technology to teach my old dog a new trick. As it turns out, the HealTech GIPro X-Type is just what I was looking for, with plug-and-play applications for many older models that do not have a gear-position sensor or a diagnostic port in the ECU that allows access to speed and rpm values.
The GIPro X-Type uses a proprietary wiring harness developed for each model they sell, making the bulk of the installation truly plug-in easy. Only two wires (one power and the other connecting to the crankshaft position sensor) need to be spliced into to complete the job. In fact, I spent twice as much time removing the tank, the bodywork, and instrument cluster preparing my bike for the GIPro cable routing than I did on the actual installation. Although, to be honest, I’m discounting about an hour of troubleshooting associated with having my PosiTap T-connector fail to make a connection on the first assembly (something I have never had happen before). So, I’d estimate the entire job would take about three hours. Two for stripping the bike down (though unfaired motorcycles will not have this issue) and buttoning it back up after the installation. The actual GIPro mounting takes about 15 minutes, but I always take the extra time to plan out the cable routing plus zip-tying everything in place.
The GIPro unit itself is tiny, only 20mm x 30mm x 15mm (8/10 inch x 1 1/8 inch x 5/8 inch), and can fit pretty much anywhere on the dash or can be mounted on the bar with an optional accessory mount from Blue Monkey. Because I like to keep things tidy, I took the time to run the wires behind my instrument cluster so that it could invisibly follow the OEM wiring harness to the main wiring loom. Although this added to the install time, the finished product is well worth the effort.
Once the GIPro was in place, I just had to start up my bike’s engine and let it warm up to operating temperature. A single pass through the gears teaches the GIPro everything it needs to know about wheel speed and engine speed. After that, it is ready to go! Since my bike already has a shift light, I chose not to set up the GIPro’s shift light. I also opted not to set speed warning feature because it, frankly, seemed a little silly. Any speed I set would be exceeded at track days, causing the light to flash distractingly.
Out on the road, the HealTech GIPro X-Type is bright and easy to read in sunlight. If I had to make a suggestion, I’d love it if the GIPro had an auto-dimming function for nighttime use, but that is just a tiny nit-pick. For $119.99, you get the GIPro unit in your choice of colors (red and blue are standard and green, yellow, and white are special order parts) plus the correct wiring harness for your bike. (I chose red to match my instrument lights.) The instructions are spot on, complete with wire colors and locations which I verified with my factory service manual before delving into the wire loom’s innards.
If you’ve got a hankering for a gear indicator on your older bike, the HealTech GIPro X-Type is a perfect solution. If you have a newer bike with a diagnostics port on the ECU, the GIPro DS Series will be the one to order. Just check the Blue Monkey Motorsports website to verify which application is appropriate to your motorcycle.