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down to the basics...

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Hey Xr

This is my .02 worth. I am an average rider on dirt with some roadracing experience. I think powershifting, speedshifting etc. is fine in the heat of battle or if you are being aggressive but in practice I do feather the clutch ever so slight (habit). I have been doing this for years on roadracing and street bikes with absolutely no negative effects. I do however blip or let off the throttle during the actual shift to release the pressure on the gears. The rest will take time regarding the turning and such but the fast guys are on the gas! They all seem to use the back brake with clutch in to set the front end down (compressed forks have a steeper angle) and maybe to initiate the slide / turn. Practice and observe the fastest guys you can. Copy them. I know it is frustrating only being able to follow somebody for 1 straightaway or so but it will get better. If you are not injured you will be able to practice much more so take your time. Femurs and ankles are slow and painful to heal (all bones are). Cya and sorry for the long wind

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Originally posted by xrracer36:

hello fello thumpaholics...

i am finally getting serious about mx this year... i am getting in shape, think i have corrected my "attack position", made the mods on the wr to yzf it, and now need help...

how do i ride it...

dumb question, huh?

i don't mean the "give it a little gas, feather out the clutch" speech, i mean, how do i get aggressive on this thing on a mx track?

here's a couple points of question i have if you can answer any of them for me:

1) powershifting (shifting w/out clutch),...ok or not so hot an idea? longterm effects?

2) how to use engine braking effectively? (and not granny it around the corner w/ the clutch in)

3) rpm's: let it howl at the moon, or short shift?

4) cornering aggressively (clutch in & locked up, or what?) < kinda goes along w/ engine braking... basically, when to use the clutch on a mx track and when not to?

5)good practice techniques?

6) anything else that i might have forgotten?

i posted this on the wr side, but then realized that wr are not meant for mx riding, so wasn't sure how many responses i would get, so i posted here.

hope some of you motohead thumperjockeys can help me achieve the great title i am praising you of.

thanks,

lance

Well, I'm no pro but I'll give it a shot:

1. I do it all the time, have not noticed any side effects.

2. Engine braking lets you go deeper into the corner before you have to shut off the throttle (compared to a 2 stroker) so ride with a 2 stroker (who is about the same ability or a little better than you) and don't let off the gas before he does. Think smooth, carry momentum, roll on the throttle through the corner.

3. Both, depends on what is happening.

4. I only use the clutch on super tight corners where I am afraid I will stall the engine. Make sure you turn your idle up so the engine will not stall easily in normal corners.

5. Break the track up into sections and practice the ones you have trouble with.

6. Ride, ride, ride, ride........

Oh yeah, when you are going to brake, brake HARD. When you are going to gas it, open it up all the way! I read an article that said most riders do not open the throttle all the way. I checked myself the next time at the track, and what I thought was full throttle still had a little "twist" left in it. Makes a huge difference coming out of corners and down the straights.

Man, lots of edits....

[ January 24, 2002: Message edited by: Hokie ]

[ January 24, 2002: Message edited by: Hokie ]

[ January 24, 2002: Message edited by: Hokie ]

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Good points,

Dont get hurt! Ride a lot!

I rarely use the clutch when shifting even under full throttle. Often I just rest my boot under the lever and when it hits the rev limiter 'click' I dont know if this is good or bad but I have been doing it for a year and have no problems yet.

I say avoid the clutch in the turns unless they are very slow or you are following a 2 stroke in. I stall the most diving in behind a 2 stroker with the rear wheel locked and he is still sliding when I am ready to open it up! (bad way to pass!)

Dont be afraid to rev it wide open but keep in mind that 2nd or even 3rd will pull you out of most turns faster than a lower gear. You will have more throttle control to keep the rear from sliding out and wont have to shift as soon. there is a 80+ foot step up that I was having trouble clearing when I took the preceeding turn in 2nd then hit third, when I put it in third for the turn I could just rail the turn and hold it WFO without shifting and clear it easily with alot less work. Sometimes a gear higher than you think works better.

Remember to practice your technique as much as you practice going fast. Sometimes you need to slow down to speed up.

Ride on!

Dave S

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Slowing down to speed up it some of the best advice I ever heard. A little story: I got tired one day, but didnt want to stop. So I decided to just "cruise" around the course with both feet on the pegs standing almost straight up. I ended up passing a couple guys that got by me. Ya it was pratice and all but my lap times actually got better. Also, I see a lot of guy shifting the heck outa thier thumpers, no real need. These things will rev to 11 grand, so let'm. As far as speed shifting, your not going to hurt it. Just remember to ride it like ya stole it, and stay off the ground (read be safe) and youll have a blast.

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hello fello thumpaholics...

i am finally getting serious about mx this year... i am getting in shape, think i have corrected my "attack position", made the mods on the wr to yzf it, and now need help...

how do i ride it...

dumb question, huh?

i don't mean the "give it a little gas, feather out the clutch" speech, i mean, how do i get aggressive on this thing on a mx track?

here's a couple points of question i have if you can answer any of them for me:

1) powershifting (shifting w/out clutch),...ok or not so hot an idea? longterm effects?

2) how to use engine braking effectively? (and not granny it around the corner w/ the clutch in)

3) rpm's: let it howl at the moon, or short shift?

4) cornering aggressively (clutch in & locked up, or what?) < kinda goes along w/ engine braking... basically, when to use the clutch on a mx track and when not to?

5)good practice techniques?

6) anything else that i might have forgotten?

i posted this on the wr side, but then realized that wr are not meant for mx riding, so wasn't sure how many responses i would get, so i posted here.

hope some of you motohead thumperjockeys can help me achieve the great title i am praising you of.

thanks,

lance

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thanks guys. this is exactly what i needed. i heard from numerous sources both ways on the powershifting. wasn't sure if it would hurt it or not. (i did it anyways, and will continue, but i always let off the gas a little before opting for the up-gear)

cornering, i have been racing for almost two years now, and i realized that i take the crners like grandma in her pinto... clutch in: coasting: brake sliding:...errr wait, i guess granny doesn't braking slide except during rush hour....aqnyways... i would like to learn to use the natural advantage my bike has this year over teh two-smokes, which i used to ride, and which is where i got used to pulling the clutch in at.

ok.

keep it coming guys. every thing helps. hopefully some other TTers can learn something, too, cuz we are all thumping here.

thanks

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If you really want to LEARN how to go to fast, go to a good motocross school. I know Gary Bailey has some courses on the east coast as well as Gary Semics and I'm sure there are others out there who can help. Classes cost between $100 and $200 for a day or two of riding and learning from the guys who teach the pros. They will teach you how to attack the track and give you tips on what good form is. I also have some Gary Semics videos that covers the gauntlet of techniques. Also you can have someone video tape you while you ride and you'll see what you need to work on, and then video tape a fast rider doing the same section and you'll pick up tips. Riding aggressive has alot to do with you mental approach also, so you need to build your confidence by practicing good technique. If you technique is poor, it's very hard to improve. Get good basics then ride as much as the Pennsylvania weather will allow.

Pat

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ugh! this is frustrating!!! i got to ride my 200 yesterday, and was working on coming into the corners clutchless, but it is a hard habit to get used to... i really had to work mentally to keep my self from going for the clutch... one question.... can you use the rear brake with out the clutch in? i was grabbing the front, and just barely dragging the back coming into a corner, and i could feel the bike "braking" as i down shifted coming into the turn (easier to shift with a quick stab at the clutch), but was afraid to lay into the rear brake for fear of stalling it.

on the flip-side, i did feel faster and more confident coming into and out of turns on the gass, cuz it seemed to help enhance the feel of balance and control, rather than letting the rear coast and slide around.

ok. later. :)

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oh, what type of lines coming into and out of a turn should i be looking for? i don't hink i would benefit fromt he same lines a two-smoke would, with the added traction of a thumper... how should i look for a line in the turns now compared to the way you do on a smoker?

thanks

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MX school is THE way to go!

If nothing else, find a local pro and pay him for a few hours of instruction. An orgainized school is the best because they follow a format that will cover all the basics.

Yes, you can and should use rear brake even without the clutch. You will need to develop a better feel for the rear brake so you dont stop the rear wheel and stall it. This can be VERY frustrating! I got so upset with myself while trying to learn this that I ghost rode my bike into a ditch! (real stupid btw) The advantage is that you wont lock the rear wheel anymore and will find the transition from brakes to throttle much smoother and more controled. A HUGE plus on a slick track.

Keep at it!

Dave S

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according to folks on this board, powershifting is okay, but don't rest your foot on or under the shifter. The shifter fork can get bent and cause problems with the tranny. Powershift away, but keep your toes somewhere else when you're in between gears.

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I nearly ate a giant facefull of dirt getting caught between 2nd and 3rd powershifting on an 80 foot step up Sunday.

Other than that, I still think powershifting is OK. :)

Dave S

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my cousin is a local pro... i thought about asking him...

i think i just need some practice time... nothing can replace time on the bike learning first hand...

i'm trying to get the woods opened back up to me by special permission... yeah, it would be on a limited riding basis, but heah, it's better than nuthin.

i know steve hatch has schools at my local track every year, but they are like $200-$300. :D

thanks and keep em coming... racing season is just around the corner and any advise is appreciated... :D:)

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Originally posted by Dave S:

I nearly ate a giant facefull of dirt getting caught between 2nd and 3rd powershifting on an 80 foot step up Sunday.

Other than that, I still think powershifting is OK. :)

Dave S

Dave, you seen to experience the problem that I was wondering about. I hear you guys say that you "powershift" without the clutch....how do you do that under full load??? Seems to me that you would have to let off the throttle to insure that the bike shifts gears otherwise it doesnt shift 100% of the time.

My version of powershifting involves using the clutch and NEVER letting off the gas. It always shifts.

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JohnnyG,

I think your way is better! I have been shifting clutchless under power since I got this bike last Feb. This is the first time I missed one but it was one time too many.

I think I'll go back to the fan the clutch full throttle type powershift too.

Dave S

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Does this ..........um.......CLUTCH THING.......um.....does it come as an option on the "after 99" MODELS?

Someone once told me that that lever on the left was only an engagement for the tire spinner thing! and once you were moving to NOT WORRY about it! just forget about it. Mostly for a counter balance for the front brake lever so the bike was not lop-sided!!!! :):D:D

:D

:D

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Originally posted by xrracer36:

my cousin is a local pro... i thought about asking him...

i think i just need some practice time... nothing can replace time on the bike learning first hand...

i'm trying to get the woods opened back up to me by special permission... yeah, it would be on a limited riding basis, but heah, it's better than nuthin.

i know steve hatch has schools at my local track every year, but they are like $200-$300. :D

thanks and keep em coming... racing season is just around the corner and any advise is appreciated... :D:)

practice is good if you are practicing the proper techniques. I highly suggest you get Gary Semics' MX training techniques videos. I have been riding for some 30 yrs and found these videos to be very helpful. Just applying a few of the techniques helped my lap times considerably. On some of the earlier videos like 1 & 2, you have to get beyond the old school bikes and gear but after getting a good laugh at how we used to look. the tapes have some very good info.

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yeah, i might look into that... and i hope to talk to my cousin and train a little with him this year... his dad is really good at that stuff, too, and he helps me out a little.

wow. this topic really took off. keep it going... this really benefit some riders... (me inclusive)

later

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Originally posted by intothumpin:

practice is good if you are practicing the proper techniques. I highly suggest you get Gary Semics' MX training techniques videos. I have been riding for some 30 yrs and found these videos to be very helpful. Just applying a few of the techniques helped my lap times considerably. On some of the earlier videos like 1 & 2, you have to get beyond the old school bikes and gear but after getting a good laugh at how we used to look. the tapes have some very good info.

The videos are good, but the live class is GREAT. I went to one of Semics classes (not taught by Semics though) and I learned a ton during those two days. I think it was around $250 for a two day class. It was worth every penny though.

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