Honda Goldwing Forum banner

1 - 20 of 23 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Having only been riding for 5 years so a newbie still my first bike a Yamaha Vstar 1100 and found the shifting of the gears more intuitive based on increased speed. As I am still getting used to my 2012 GW shifting thru the gears smoothly has been somewhat frustrating. Based on the manual gearing up happens very quickly 1st to 2nd 12mph, 2nd to 3rd 19 mph, 3rd to 4th 25 and OD at 31 mph. This ratio seems incredibly quick and I am having trouble staying smooth unless very slow acceleration. If I hold on too long get the typical bump back as higher gear is engaged.
Is there any advice on how to gear up more smoothly. Of course more experience on the bike will make a difference but don’t want to damage gear box.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,905 Posts
My advice is to just relax. You can actually start out in 2nd gear if you want. I usually shift to second as soon as the bike is rolling. I also use second gear for any tight, slow turns because the throttle response and available torque is lower, making the bike more controllable. The incredible amount of torque means that you can shift up at lower RPMs if you want. The bike is also very happy at high RPMs and folks compare it to a sport tourer. Many riders like to keep the RPMs over 3K, but I say just ride in a way that is comfortable to you.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,477 Posts
like NREMTP said

as long as I am one up and it is not an up hill start.... always start off in 2nd gear, 1st gear is like what I grew up hearing as "granny" gear in an old 4 speed..... never used unless heavy load or needed to crawl
I find that even when needing or wanting to get going fast, quickly shifting from 2nd to 3rd to 4th is the key for me, then you can let her rip in 4th to higher speeds then go to 5th, scary how fast she will hit 80
the lower gears are a pretty tight ratio
I have had my head up my @%% and forgot to down shift coming to a light......................... they will take of in 5th gear
 
  • Like
Reactions: NREMTP

·
Registered
Joined
·
610 Posts
If you are a stickler for following the manual then do as it says, I found that mine likes to be shifted in the 2500 to 3000 range and I never use OD under 50 and then only for short periods. Mine likes OD at 55 and over then the sky is the limit. Try this you may just like it. Listen to the bike and it will tell you where it is happy.👍
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
45 Posts
Barry has it right, roll out 1st, take second to 2700, same w/ 3rd, 4th to 3000. OD is cruise 55+.
It will slip the rear tire in first under hard acceleration, you probably won't feel it unless you hit a tar snake, but that is the primary reason for short tire life on a GW. I generally get out of 1st before I get through an intersection, the power is so much more controllable in 2nd, and if you want to accelerate quickly there is more than enough torque to do that. Smoothness comes with time, try a quick disengage and a slower engagement of clutch during shift, but not so slow as to slip it.
 

·
Registered
2001 Goldwing
Joined
·
10 Posts
You really have to feel the bike to shift smoothly. You can shift at slower speeds or at higher speeds, it's all about timing. I remember litening to Jackie Stewart, the race car driver, talk about driving. He said it was all about smoothness, in accelerating, braking and turning. You don't want to feel the shifts, match your engine speed to your vehicle speed. You will know when it's right, just keep practicing and stop thinking so much about it - remember to be smooth.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
If you are a stickler for following the manual then do as it says, I found that mine likes to be shifted in the 2500 to 3000 range and I never use OD under 50 and then only for short periods. Mine likes OD at 55 and over then the sky is the limit. Try this you may just like it. Listen to the bike and it will tell you where it is happy.👍
Only by the book for babying it but with what all have been saying is slightly eye opening. Never thought of starting in 2nd figured that would be a strain on gear box. I will definitely try playing around with these ranges. No OD under 50 doesn’t seem viable but will feel it. It sounds like this flat six can take a hell lot of torque so no need to baby it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
666 Posts
For all of my manual gear box machines I just feel when to shift. I can say I don't think I have ever looked at the tach except for my Z28 Camero in the lower gears. I wanted to hit red line there and had to pay attention. On my Wing I just shift when it feels good. Sometimes just for kicks I will wind it on a start. The thing will run about 90 in 3rd and that is enough. For normal it seems the 3k mark is about right. I don't like to run it long at 2k or below. I am sure it really doesn't matter much where you shift. Just don't lug the engine for long periods. It ain't healthy.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
For all of my manual gear box machines I just feel when to shift. I can say I don't think I have ever looked at the tach except for my Z28 Camero in the lower gears. I wanted to hit red line there and had to pay attention. On my Wing I just shift when it feels good. Sometimes just for kicks I will wind it on a start. The thing will run about 90 in 3rd and that is enough. For normal it seems the 3k mark is about right. I don't like to run it long at 2k or below. I am sure it really doesn't matter much where you shift. Just don't lug the engine for long periods. It ain't healthy.
90 in 3rd must be screaming !! Thanks for the advice. I just have to get more hours to get the feel.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
610 Posts
The wing likes to run in the middle to upper rev range even though you can lug it around all day would not recommend it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
forget mph as a referenc3e as to when to shift. Lots depends on load and whether taking off on an incline or not. I ride a 98SE. 1st to 2nd is basically as soon as the bike is rolling since 1st is so low. After that my sweet spot is 2,7500rpms I have found I get no backlash when releasing the clutch and it puts the least amount of stress on the driveline. Honda recommends those insane mph #s to keep rpms down so they can say their published mpg and emissions are correct. shifting that early you will notice whine from the gears and whine equates to stress. My 2,750 rpm shifting point works the best for me as it isn't too early and the engine is at a speed where it can easily handle the next higher gear ratio. play with it and see what works best and forget what the manual is telling you.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
forget mph as a referenc3e as to when to shift. Lots depends on load and whether taking off on an incline or not. I ride a 98SE. 1st to 2nd is basically as soon as the bike is rolling since 1st is so low. After that my sweet spot is 2,7500rpms I have found I get no backlash when releasing the clutch and it puts the least amount of stress on the driveline. Honda recommends those insane mph #s to keep rpms down so they can say their published mpg and emissions are correct. shifting that early you will notice whine from the gears and whine equates to stress. My 2,750 rpm shifting point works the best for me as it isn't too early and the engine is at a speed where it can easily handle the next higher gear ratio. play with it and see what works best and forget what the manual is telling you.
Thanks for the input. I took a lot of your advice on starting in 2nd and definitely felt more control especially working on slow speed maneuvers. The magic number of 2500-2700 rpms’ feels like the sweet spot for me at this time. I wish the GW display would show the current gear so when downshifting it would be helpful knowing if the bike is in 2nd or 1st while rolling thru a turn. I know your suppose to feel it but sometimes I lose where I am with the downshift gear.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
610 Posts
If you feel you need, a year position indicator can be purchased and from what I read is plug and play.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
You really have to feel the bike to shift smoothly. You can shift at slower speeds or at higher speeds, it's all about timing. I remember litening to Jackie Stewart, the race car driver, talk about driving. He said it was all about smoothness, in accelerating, braking and turning. You don't want to feel the shifts, match your engine speed to your vehicle speed. You will know when it's right, just keep practicing and stop thinking so much about it - remember to be smooth.
I agree with what Barry said but I think that's true becauset that rpm range is where I typically found the engine rpm on my '06 to be equal to the speed of the bike. Excellent observation and conveyance into words, Fibersport, thank you, I think this explains perfectly why what Barry said is true. It's likely, Blade, that you too will find that "matching point" somewhere in the 2-3K rpm range, given the version GL1800 that you have but find it for yourself!
I'm finding that I have been using the paddle shifters only on my '18 because it shifts at such a lower rpm than "feels right"! Thanks again.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
389 Posts
Thanks for the input. I took a lot of your advice on starting in 2nd and definitely felt more control especially working on slow speed maneuvers. The magic number of 2500-2700 rpms’ feels like the sweet spot for me at this time. I wish the GW display would show the current gear so when downshifting it would be helpful knowing if the bike is in 2nd or 1st while rolling thru a turn. I know your suppose to feel it but sometimes I lose where I am with the downshift gear.
I installed the Gear Position Indicator on my 05 and love having it. If, I'm on level ground, I frequently start out in 2nd Gear. And, like you I feel the sweet post is between 2500 - 2700 rpms. So, I get to 5th pretty fast. Even on the superslab, I don't like exceeding 3000 RPM. I get my best fuel mileage if I stay under 3000.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
Having only been riding for 5 years so a newbie still my first bike a Yamaha Vstar 1100 and found the shifting of the gears more intuitive based on increased speed. As I am still getting used to my 2012 GW shifting thru the gears smoothly has been somewhat frustrating. Based on the manual gearing up happens very quickly 1st to 2nd 12mph, 2nd to 3rd 19 mph, 3rd to 4th 25 and OD at 31 mph. This ratio seems incredibly quick and I am having trouble staying smooth unless very slow acceleration. If I hold on too long get the typical bump back as higher gear is engaged.
Is there any advice on how to gear up more smoothly. Of course more experience on the bike will make a difference but don’t want to damage gear box.
Replace the clutch lever bushings.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
If you are a stickler for following the manual then do as it says, I found that mine likes to be shifted in the 2500 to 3000 range and I never use OD under 50 and then only for short periods. Mine likes OD at 55 and over then the sky is the limit. Try this you may just like it. Listen to the bike and it will tell you where it is happy.👍
I agree with 55 in 4th ... at 55 I don't hear the engine or exhaust... it purring like a kitten
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,815 Posts
I bought my 2015 new and thought I had transmission issues when I first bought it because of the noisy clunking transmission. I did try Amsoil oil and I think it certainly helped but after 23,000 miles I realize now it is all about me. I do the "preload" pressure for shifting and tend to shift a bit early but it all depends on the conditions for me. Somedays I hit them all perfect and they just click into place, some days I hear the clunk but it is mostly in between 1st and 2nd gear. I think it is mostly driver actions that cause the noise, that it is perfectly normal and not an issue for the transmission or engine. Ride it and enjoy it.

Steve
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
34 Posts
On many lighter bikes, I got lazy about using the clutch while shifting, in that I would move the foot shift lever while I was pulling the clutch lever back. On my Wing, I find that it helps to wait just a part of a second to pull the clutch lever to the bars before shifting. But then again, I do clunk a shift now and then, doesn't hurt a thing.
 
1 - 20 of 23 Posts
Top