Downshifting with a slipper clutch. Several quick downshifts okay? - ZX6R Forum
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post #1 of 57 Old 04-12-2017, 04:06 PM Thread Starter
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Question Downshifting with a slipper clutch. Several quick downshifts okay?

What would be the best way to properly use a slipper clutch (OEM) at the track while maintaining adequate traction?

I am used to blipping and I have attempted to change gears one at a time while releasing the clutch lever but it just seems to take the same amount of time.

Would performing multiple downshifts and then releasing the clutch lever work in corner entry? Any transmission damage with that?. I've searched but can't find much information on this topic.

Example of what I am referring to ( 5 > 4 > 3 > 2) vs ( 5 4 3 > 2) several qick downshifts all at once


Any techniques and recommendations would be very helpful.

-------------------------------------------------------

04/28/17 Track day test results:

Finally! The first track day of the year was today and was focused on clutch use/ improving technique all around.

I still prefer the throttle, albeit out of habit, but I also like my newfound stability provided by using clutch slip.

So I tried both methods of shifting gears/ slipper clutch use.

1) Changing 1 gear at a time while pulling the lever in a fast successive manner:
Worked quite nicely. I was able to brake later while maintaining a consistent and increased brake pressure going into corners which helped provide predictable corner entry stability. Absolutely no problems with the back end waving or loosing traction.

2) Downshifting multiple gears and dumping the clutch:
A bit sloppy with some fishtailing if not done with finesse primarily due to an extended clutch hold and drop in rpm's. It doesn't really work well with the OEM clutch unless you are able to make very fast downshifts, but probably missing a gear in the process. Maybe an aftermarket slipper would make it a smoother transition.

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Last edited by jd41; 04-30-2017 at 12:24 PM. Reason: Updated for technique results/ findings.
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post #2 of 57 Old 04-12-2017, 05:14 PM
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The slipper is meant to limit rear wheel skidding due to engine compression. You won't damage the engine or transmission 5432 dump the clutch.
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"Basic stuff fellas. Use your head for something other than to break your next fall."

"There's this adage that we have 2 ears and one mouth so we should listen twice as much as we talk. Unfortunately with the Internet people have taken this old adage and turned it around. They have two eyes and 10 fingers so they think they need to post 5 times as much as they read. And since they have 10 fingers and one brain, they only have to think 10% of the time! "
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post #3 of 57 Old 04-12-2017, 05:15 PM
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LOl,, Well welcome to the club..

I've got a slipper clutch. Talked with prior owner and discussed your question.
The coaches wanted me to brake later, riding like I normally did had NO idea how I could brake at the points they showed me.
I asked HOW could I downshift and brake so much later.
Answer was on the gas until right before braking marker, pull clutch, drop the 2 or 3 gears and dump clutch. Let the slipper deal with it. Forget about blipping.

SO this is something I will be working on.
Assume PainFullySlo and a couple other's will join in.

Great topic. Look forward to other replies.
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post #4 of 57 Old 04-12-2017, 06:10 PM
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Good topic. Places like Road America is where you really get better at this since you have to go from 6th to 2nd or 6th to 3rd in a couple of spots every lap.

Personally I don't suggest you do multiple clicks all at once with the clutch pulled in and then release it. Can't say I've ever tried it though at the track, only on the street a long time ago. It just doesn't seem to provide enough control and during that time you're doing those shifts, although it's no more than a second, that is a lot of time to have essentially zero engine braking, which can make a big difference when you're braking from 150 mph. The way I do it, with or without slipper clutch is:

pull lever, downshift, release lever about halfway, pull lever, downshift, release lever halfway, downshift, and so on until the last gear and on that if I have a slipper I'm usually fine with just dumping the lever, or if I have a regular clutch I release it slower. I never blip the throttle cuz I suck at it. I tried...just can't get it. My method has worked great for me and it's very smooth.

Here's an illustration from a guy I know who used to race in AMA. I do it the same way as far as I can tell, though I've never filmed my hands. Pretty sure I've posted this somewhere on here before:


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post #5 of 57 Old 04-12-2017, 06:52 PM
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Will give it a try..

Hope to see you at road america.. June 4th.
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post #6 of 57 Old 04-12-2017, 07:12 PM Thread Starter
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Aftermarket slipper clutches made me think of this in the first place since some include that in the description.

Here's and example from Yoyodyne:

ZX6 Slipper cluch with the shallow (Corsa) ramp angle. This clutch is the one for pro racers who do several qick downshifts all at once.

Another from Sigma:

What other benefits will I get from my slipper clutch?

Your slipper clutch works anytime the rear wheel tries to overcome the engine braking, you can adjust it to work sooner or later. On its standard settings, if you bang it down one gear too many, it should declutch automatically, helping you stop the crank being revved up past its rev limiter, helping keep your engine in one piece!

In close racing one of the most invaluable reserves is the rider/drivers mental capacity. If you are concentrating on getting into a corner and fighting off close opposition then a clutch that makes any mistakes you may make on the down shifts less of a problem is a distinct advantage.

Do I need to change down normally or can I ignore the clutch lever?

The clutch is designed to stop rear wheel hopping under rapid deceleration, if you decide to ignore the clutch lever the clutch will do the work for you and will use the clutch friction plates to do the work, wearing the plates quicker if you do it all the time. If you ride normally, using the clutch lever for downshifts, the work level for the clutch is reduced and less wear occurs. Most of the time it's a case of just go out and ride.

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post #7 of 57 Old 04-12-2017, 07:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Indy View Post
Will give it a try..

Hope to see you at road america.. June 4th.
Nope, I'll be there June 30 - July 2nd. Go that weekend. That's when all the cool people go! And fast people since it's a CCS weekend
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post #8 of 57 Old 04-12-2017, 07:38 PM
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@jd41 ...I'm not saying nobody does it, since I don't know everyone, but I can say with confidence that I've NEVER heard someone downshift multiple times (with one pull of the lever only) at all the track day and race events I've been to at tracks that require you to shift more than once at the end of the front straight. You can clearly hear how many times someone downshifts based on the change in revs when the clutch engages, and at all the tracks I've been to, I have never heard only 1 downshift at the end of the straights when standing by watching people...except for the tracks with short straights where everyone always downshifts just once anyway (like my home track).

In fact my favorite sound out of everything heard at a race track is the sound of a bike with an awesome exhaust downshifting like 3-4 times at the end of a fast straight. Music to my years!!...especially if it's a V4 or a V-twin

The key is to downshift really quick. You need to get that first 1 or 2 downshifts done right away, as soon as you let off the throttle and reach for the brake. It shouldn't take you more than about 1 second or so to downshift 3 times if you do it right. And don't let the revs drop too much, hence you need to start downshifting right away.
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post #9 of 57 Old 04-12-2017, 07:47 PM
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Great thread. I've actually been trying to practice blipping since I've gotten the bike out lately and I can't seem to get it while also on the brakes. I've been wondering if it was really necessary with the slipper clutch and now I have something new to try.
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post #10 of 57 Old 04-12-2017, 11:16 PM Thread Starter
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Overview on the inside workings of a slipper clutch.


I'll keep searching for more info on technique
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post #11 of 57 Old 04-13-2017, 03:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sbk1198 View Post
Nope, I'll be there June 30 - July 2nd. Go that weekend. That's when all the cool people go! And fast people since it's a CCS weekend
Already have the date and B+B booked. Maybe next time..

How about Mid-Ohio the 10th of July. lol
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post #12 of 57 Old 04-13-2017, 05:04 AM
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FWIW, I've learned to blip and down shift while reefing in the front brake; it just takes practice. The biggest part of it is to make sure the controls are set up so you are as ergonomically correct as possible. The better the lever positions and reaches are dialed in, the easier it is. A small natural motion is far easier to do quickly than a larger, more awkward one is.

I'm sure down shifts are different with a GP shift pattern. I've spent my entire riding career using the 1 down, XX up pattern...... I have even owned motorcycles where that is done with the right foot rather than the left. Really screws with your muscle memory, when you change something so fundamental.

If I want to shift down, I stomp down. I can keep my foot on the peg, can keep my knees braced against the tank, and have enough freedom of motion to grab quite a lot of front brake, while blipping the throttle to make the down shift slip in easier. All while remaining loose on the bars....

quite sure that would all got to sh*t, on a track, LOL.

"Basic stuff fellas. Use your head for something other than to break your next fall."

"There's this adage that we have 2 ears and one mouth so we should listen twice as much as we talk. Unfortunately with the Internet people have taken this old adage and turned it around. They have two eyes and 10 fingers so they think they need to post 5 times as much as they read. And since they have 10 fingers and one brain, they only have to think 10% of the time! "
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post #13 of 57 Old 04-13-2017, 05:33 AM
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Already have the date and B+B booked. Maybe next time..

How about Mid-Ohio the 10th of July. lol
Ohhhh...yeah I've been wanting to go there, but it's just so damn far away from me. I have a friend that moved to Maryland a couple years ago and we talked about maybe meeting up at Mid-Ohio. But the distance doesn't help it...nor does the schedule, being so close after my RA trip which is also right after my company summer shutdown...so I'd have to take even more vacation days :/

Quote:
Originally Posted by RJ2112 View Post

quite sure that would all got to sh*t, on a track, LOL.
Lol yep! I've never had any issues blipping while braking when riding on the street. That's how I learned and I kept doing it all the time to get used to it. No problem at all. But as soon as I got on track, like you said...it all went to shit lol. There is no such thing as real hard braking on the street (not counting emergency stops to avoid collisions, since you come to a full stop usually anyway), but on the track, when you brake so hard and so late it makes it a lot harder to blip the throttle and be very smooth while doing it. I could never get a handle on it so I stopped trying and found a different method that works well for me.

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post #14 of 57 Old 04-13-2017, 06:32 AM
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^smoothness is key, always. Less things upsetting the chassis is always smoother than stabbing at the controls, especially if you are trying to do that with many of them simultaneously.

I have to think that as close as the ratios are in these things, the real reason to shift is to ensure you are near peak when you pin it at the exit. Or at least at the lower edge of maximum power so you can wind it through the peak before you have to shift again.

There is nowhere I ride on the street that I could maintain the engine over 11K for more than a few seconds -- my operations tend to hang between about 5 and 9, with occasional forays to redline (maybe 2 per 40 mile trip). Most of my cruising time is between about 6.5 and 8 in 5th or 6th.
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"Basic stuff fellas. Use your head for something other than to break your next fall."

"There's this adage that we have 2 ears and one mouth so we should listen twice as much as we talk. Unfortunately with the Internet people have taken this old adage and turned it around. They have two eyes and 10 fingers so they think they need to post 5 times as much as they read. And since they have 10 fingers and one brain, they only have to think 10% of the time! "
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post #15 of 57 Old 04-13-2017, 06:54 AM
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Depending on the turn and how fast I'm coming into it determines whther or not I'll rev match or just dump the clutch and let the slipper do the work. Generally, it's when I'm coming down from 4th or higher into a 2nd or 3rd gear turn at a high rate of speed.

Just grab the clutch, downshift, and dump.... you're good
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