Quick Shifting On A Motorcycle: The Definitive Guide

Motorcycle Quick Shifter

If you are a bike enthusiast, you must be knowing about theta recent upgrade for bikes, that is quick shifting.

The addition of a quick shifter has completely enhanced the overall riding experience and performance delivered by a motorcycle.

With quick shifting, your bike runs faster, making it easier for riders to change gears.

As people are coming to know the usefulness of this feature, they are upgrading their bikes to add a quick shifter. 

Are you willing to know more about quick shifters?  Let’s go through the process of quick shifting in details below. 

What Is Quick Shifting? 

Quick shifting refers to the method of changing gears in which the accelerator pedal is lifted above for a very short time, even less than a second. Bikers lift the pedal and change the gear and press the pedal again. This brief mechanism is called quick shifting. 

Earlier, bikers had to roll off the throttle, drag the clutch, press a gear, release the clutch and again roll off the throttle back.

It takes a lot of time for beginners to get used to this long process. With a quick shifter, there’s no need of touching the throttle or clutch.

The mechanism is too simple and really quick- lift the pedal, change the gear and release the pedal immediately.

Since quick shifting involves limited steps, the biker is quicker and enjoys the better performance. 

How Does Quick Shifting Work? 

The function of the quick shifter is to unload the transmission by preventing the ignition spark.

The moment you lift the lever (pedal) to change the gear, the quick shifter lessens the load on the drive train by preventing ignition in the engine temporarily, which is enough for the changed gear to come into effect. 

The quick shifter ensures that the throttle remains pinned while the rider changes gears. 

In most modern-day bikes, the gear lever and the gearbox are connected by a rod and a switch in line, which are commonly necessary for a quick shifter to work. 

The design and mechanism of a quick shifter is fairly simple. However, to make it work, there must be a change in the gear upwards. The quick shifter takes the pressure of a solid linkage rod, making the overall experience smooth and enhanced. 

I would now like to explain the mechanism of quick shifting differently.

When you are riding a bike and the engine is doing its job, the gears are being pushed forward by the crank. Now, if you roll off the throttle for long, the speed of the bike would reduce, ending the momentum of the wheels. This acts in the opposite direction to that of the gears. 

Now in between these two moments, that is, when the engine’s speed reduces and it comes at pace with the gear speed, the gearbox experiences a moment of float. During this time, the dog teeth that engage gears face each other. 

What Are The Different Types Of Quick Shifters? 

Usually, quick shifters are of two types: pull and push quick shifters.

Now the quick shifter that suits your bike depends on whether your shift lever needs to be pushed down or up while you change gears.

The motorcycle model will also affect the type of quick shifter you choose. While you buy a quick shifter, no matter from the local store or online, make sure to buy it from reputable stores. 

How Is Quick Shifting Beneficial ? 

Most people prefer to install the quick shifter in their bike because there are several benefits associated with it. 

Quick shifting ensures hassle free and a fast riding experience.

Usually, without a quick shifter you have to make two synchronised movements. But, quick shifting allows bikers to make one simple, quick movement.

Moreover, quick shifting also enhances the bike’s speed. It ensures safety and overall performance of the motorcycle. 

Are Quick Shifters Safe?

Research has proved that bikes with a quick shifter provide more safety than bikes without one.

This is so because quick shifting completely eliminates the need to adjust the throttle or clutch after or before changing a gear.

The quick shifter makes shifting gears a much easier process because it involves fewer steps. Thus the rider can focus on driving and have better control and driving experience overall. 

What Kind Of Riders Need Quick Shifting? 

The purpose of installing quick shifters is to enhance the bike’s speed and performance, thus getting faster lap times in races.

Thus, quick shifters are most useful for bike racers.

While racing, if changing gears takes too much time, it would definitely affect the driver’s attention and hamper his/ her performance.

Hence, riders must be able to shift gears up and down as quickly as possible, in a few steps. Only a quick shifter can make this possible, without causing any power loss. 

However, because of the usefulness offered by quick shifters, they have become quite common among street bikers too.

Quick shifting allows for a clutch less transmission, which is truly satisfying. Common bikers don’t need a quick shifter but they are largely upgrading their bikes only because quick shifting makes riding a smooth and fast process. 

Are Quick Shifters Just For Race Bikes?

The simplest answer to this question would be no. Anybody can install a quick shifter in his/ her bike.

Though quick shifting certainly enhances the speed of the bike, it’s absence doesn’t make a major difference on road.

But what matters is that the feel and sound of a quick shifter proves to be great for touring. The quick shifter brings evident improvement in the performance of the bike- it results in smooth change of gears, causing less pillion movement back and forth and hence little or no helmet banging. 

You might wonder how a smooth shift is important for the biker. Well, a smooth change of gear means less movement of the bike, indicating that it ensures a safe ride. 

Can You Add A Quick Shifter To Any Motorcycle?

Earlier people added quick shifters to only racing bikes, for enhancing the bike’s speed and performance.

However, lately, several riders have upgraded their bikes with quick shifting to experience an improved riding experience. People love to experience that performance and speed boost that only quick shifting can deliver.

There are some quick shifters that are compatible with specific bike models. However, you can also find quick shifters that fit into almost every model.

To know which quick shifter best suits your bike’s model, you must go through the owner’s manual. 

Why Do Some Quick Shifters Work Better Than Others?

Different brands manufacture different types of gear boxes. Some weigh heavier or lighter than others.

The structure of the ECU, the chain tension and the mechanical arrangement contribute to the weight of a gearshift. Hence, these factors automatically affect the quick shifter too. 

If the duration for which the engine is cut to place the gear shift is too short, the gears will grind.

However, if it’s too long, the rider would feel like diving on lurch or upshifts or downshifts. Of course the gear shifts occur within seconds, but too smooth a shift would make the bike unsettled. 

Not all quick shifters are equally efficient.

Hence, choosing the best one that cuts the engine off for neither too long nor too short of a duration is necessary as it entirely affects your riding experience. 

Does Quick Shifting Damage The Gearbox? 

The performance of a bike without a quick shifter depends on how the biker changes the shift gears.

If the person can shift gears smoothly, the gearbox would function for a prolonged period. It has been found that quick shifting can damage the motorcycle’s gearbox to some extent. 

But, technically a quick shifter shouldn’t result in any kind of damage because it cuts the fuel during the shift period, thus making changing shifts easier and faster on the transmission.

It doesn’t cause any loading during that microsecond of shift change. In fact, some riders state that using a quick shifter causes less harm than regular shifting does to the gearbox. 

Final Thoughts 

In current times, quick shifters are an important component for racing bikes and street riders alike.

Their ability to ensure the rider’s safety while delivering top notch speed and performance is truly praiseworthy. Nowadays, there are a variety of quick shifters available in today’s automobile industry.

With so many varieties it can be a bit overwhelming when it comes to choosing the best quick shifter for your vehicle.

Go through the reviews and check whether the product has received any negative feedback.

If you have any preference for any specific type or brand, you can shortlist the best quick shifters accordingly. In the end, if you are unable to make a decision, you must take expert guidance.