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Left & Right gear change

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Left & Right gear change
Started at 12:46am on the 25th October, 2007 by Kevin
Kevin Subject: Left & Right gear change
Hi,
I have been the owner of a 500 bullet with right hand gear shift for 5 years .Having rode bikes with left hand shift for about 20 yrs it took me a while before the right hand shifting became normal.
I am now considering purchasing another bike with left hand shift (BMW).Would welcome comments from others that perhaps also run 2 bikes with different gear shifts , is it possible to master changing from one bike to another without stuffing up too often?
Regards Kevin.
Posted: 12:46am 25th October, 2007
BT Subject: Re: Left & Right gear change
Kevin,
I ride down and up right (Triumph), up and down right (Bullet), and down and up left(Husqvarna and V-max). I learned the left shift after 40 years of all right shift. Give it a season. The down/up or up/down takes longer than the left/right.
Good luck,
BT
Posted: 03:38am 25th October, 2007
john b Subject: Re: Left & Right gear change
Hi,i say go for it i ride a 800 bmw outfit and a 500 bullet,i had never had anything to do with right gear shifting until last april when i brought the bullet,and then rode it 40 mile home,a couple of missed gears but nothing major,but i did take a while getting used to the weight and steering after riding the outfit but now i dont even think about it,good luck and safe riding,john b.
Posted: 08:11am 25th October, 2007
Anders F. R. Subject: Re: Left & Right gear change
Yes, it is possible to master changing from right foot gear shift to left foot gear shift, just as it is with manual and automatic transmission in cars. I have a BMW R80/7 and a RE model "G", and have also had a few other left foot shift bikes. Since I bought the "G" in 2002 i have only mixed up the gear and brake pedals a few times, and no dangerous situations have occured as a consequence of this. I think there are several reasons for why this is not a problem:

> The BMW and the "G" are so different in so many ways, that the gear change is only a part of it. It is impossible to "forget" which bike I am riding.
> When riding the BMW I normally use only the front brake (twin disc brake), so the left foot takes care of the gear change and the right foot has "nothing to do".
> On the "G" I always have to use both brakes, not only for stopping, but for the brake light to light up (only connected to the rear brake pedal). I have adjusted the brake pedal so that I always can feel it under my left foot, as a reminder as well as to make braking more efficient and convenient.

So, what is left to remember about braking is this:
> BMW: Only front brake.
> "G": Always front brake and left foot together.

As changing gear is always a planned action (as opposed to sudden emergency braking), it is no problem to tell the correct foot to do it. What is most confusing is the difference between 1st down (BMW) and 1st up, but uoy get used to that as well.

Having said all this, I can only recommend BMW as reliable, comfortable and easy to work on (at least the 2 valve R models without ABS brakes and too much fancy electronics).

My R80/7 is from 1981. Close to 130000 km so far and still going strong. I ride to and from work every day in the "summer" (probably parking the bike for the winter this weekend). A set of large Hepco & Becker panniers can carry what I need most of the time.

Regards, Anders F. R.
Posted: 04:52pm 25th October, 2007
Diesel Graham Subject: Re: Left & Right gear change
My bullet is my first right foot change bike, I am already used to left foot braking with my Triumph, but using the right foot for occasionally stamp into gear instead of using the rear brake!
I have been swapping between 3 bikes all with different gear change for the last 6 weeks and I am getting used to it now. So my advice is go for it. It will present no problems as long as you keep familiar with both bikes.
Posted: 07:44pm 25th October, 2007
mike Subject: Re: Left & Right gear change
I recently did a test ride on a harley sportster, and was a bit worried about changing gears with left foot but found it quite straightforward after a few changes up and down, and also found getting back on my bullet afterwards was no problem. So i dont think you will have any problems, all the best . mike
Posted: 10:14pm 25th October, 2007

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