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This is the most basic of basic questions that I need help with!

I have a Honda CL160, and I can't figure out how to shift. I'm having trouble figuring out where neutral is, (click all the way down?), and why (if I'm even right about this) 1st is a click up, and 2nd is a click down through neutral.

I've had this bike for 6 months, it runs, and I just haven't had the balls to go out and fail again. I live in the city and people are staring!

Thanks!
 

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Welcome.

1-N-2-3-4-5 were all the way down is 1st. Neutral can be hard to get on a well worn bike.


Have you looked into taking the MSF Basic Rider Course?
 

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Get an owners manual. Find a model-specific Forum- those bikes are hugely poopular and I know there must be a couple.
These bikes don't shift like a car. The transmissions prefer to be moving, thus, shifting can be difficult while sitting in your driveway. ALL the way down is 1st, half a clic up is neutral, another up is secongd. Unlike a car, you have to row through the gears to go from one gear to the next. You can't get to neutral from 3rd, for instance.

Shifting from neutral into first is easy, but the bike wants to be moving at least a little bit to get back into neutral from 1st. Doen't make any sense, but that's the way it is. If you feel stuck in first sometime, try pushing the bike forward while you try to pull up on the lever.

Now, here is a life lesson; Everybody except your mother is much more concerned about how they look and what others think of them. They don't care one iota about some wad on a stinky little bike. It's in your head- not theirs. If you're woried about what other people think, get a Prius and polish your shoes.
 

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Welcome.

1-N-2-3-4-5 were all the way down is 1st. Neutral can be hard to get on a well worn bike.


Have you looked into taking the MSF Basic Rider Course?
Yup, that is the standard gearing configuration that has been used for years on most major brand motorcycles. 1st gear is down and 2nd-5 is up and N is between 1st and 2nd. Neutral is a pain to get into on most bikes. Sometimes I shut the bike off when I get where I am going and then play around with it to get it into neutral.
 

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This is the most basic of basic questions that I need help with!

I have a Honda CL160, and I can't figure out how to shift. I'm having trouble figuring out where neutral is, (click all the way down?), and why (if I'm even right about this) 1st is a click up, and 2nd is a click down through neutral.

I've had this bike for 6 months, it runs, and I just haven't had the balls to go out and fail again. I live in the city and people are staring!

Thanks!
Some very old bikes had a transmission that went N-1-2-3-4 etc.. This caused a lot of problems with people being in Neutral when they thought they were in 1st, so 1-N-2-3-4 etc. became standard.

For my bike Neutral feels like a half stroke between 1st and 2nd. It is easy to miss, and I often have to fiddle with it. Though I love knowing I'm passing into 1st gear when the neutral light on my dash blinks in my peripheral vision. Still, I stop at lights and kick down on it to makes for damn sure I'm in the right gear. I feel infinitely stupid when I sit there doing delicate clutch work and revving in neutral.
 

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I have a Honda CL160, and I can't figure out how to shift. I'm having trouble figuring out where neutral is, (click all the way down?), and why (if I'm even right about this) 1st is a click up, and 2nd is a click down through neutral.

I've had this bike for 6 months, it runs, and I just haven't had the balls to go out and fail again. I live in the city and people are staring! !
The reason people are staring is because it's unusual to see anyone sitting on a bike trying to go through the gears sitting still. Don't do that.

First, before you do anything else, check the clutch free-play. You need to make sure you have a 1/4" or so free play (or whatever the maintenance manual for the bike says) at the lever. If it's too much or too little, you'll have problems.

The other thing is, as has already been stated, it's pretty hard to do much shifting sitting still, even if the engine's running. Put it in first, get rolling, and keep rolling as you go through the gears. If you don't know how to do any of that, you're not ready for riding on the road. Truck it to a big parking lot somewhere and practice out of traffic.

Lastly, practice shifting down to neutral as you slow to a stop, and actually shift into neutral before you stop. Makes finding neutral much easier.
 
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