go full throttle in 3rd gear?
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  1. #1
    Senior Member jckosnow's Avatar
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    Sep 2012
    so I really like 3rd gear. it actually feels "fast", like I'm actually accelerating quickly but I'm scared to go full throttle in 3rd bc it just feels wrong, as if the engine is going to blow up or something (I have a stock 2012 tw, engine is mechanically sound, and I have only been riding since October 2012)). but it seems like I could really get up to speed a lot faster if I could get more out of 3rd gear. i can't remember exactly but the manual says to shift out of third at around 15mph? I usually get out of third at about 20, or 25 if I'm trying to get ahead of some idiot in town, though there's quite a bit left on the throttle at 25mph in 3rd I think. so can i go full throttle in 3rd gear even though it feels like it's *bad* for the engine?

    thanks for your time!
    2012 TW200, 1993 KLR650, 1992 GSX750F

  2. #2
    Senior Member assquatch20's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    One of the things we try to ignore is shift points according to a manual. Not always, but usually. As well, you may or may not want to honor the break in period, if you're still in it. After that, at least, I would say go for it. That's what the gears are for, power when you need it.

  3. #3
    Senior Member billmags's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Bayside NY
    It's not the mph it's the points in the rev range you should be listening for- using your ears as a tachometer. It works with any engine. Sometimes, you shift early- into second, lets say. Then wind them out from there. OR You can shift early each gear up to 4th (35mph)for a fast relaxed - less noisy cruise then drop it back down into 3rd to use up the powerband to pass. It's hard to explain here - Just don't over rev for very long and you'll be fine. Practice downshifting - it will teach you where you want to be.

    Kawi ZRX1200
    Yamaha TW Two Hundirt

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  5. #4
    Senior Member RockyTFS's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Hailey, ID
    Quote Originally Posted by jckosnow View Post
    so can i go full throttle in 3rd gear even though it feels like it's *bad* for the engine?

    According to the TW speed calculator ( http://www.it-ideas.net/bike/calc.htm ) at 8,500 RPM with stock gearing you will be at 41.4 mph. That's 1,000 RPM below redline.

    So if your TW is well broken in you can easily take it to 40mph in third with no worries. Whether shifting somewhat before that will give you the best 0-60 acceleration is another story. You will just have to experiment. I really doubt that ANY of us ever actually get to the 9,500 RPM redline!

    I doubt that you would want to ride around at the 46 mph redline in third gear all day....
    2018 TW200
    2014 BMW R1200GS LC

  6. #5
    Senior Member Bullspit's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Southern Michigan
    The TW usually runs out of pull before hitting the redline. So pin that throttle and when you feel like the bike is not pulling as fast, shift!

  7. #6
    Member 5chord's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Westchester, NY
    The TW is bullet proof. If the engine is working good, has been properly broken in and has oil, you can keep it pinned in 3rd for years, maybe forever. You might wanna get earplugs though

  8. #7
    Senior Member silverhead's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Central Iowa, USA
    I've only owned one bike with a rev limiter and the only time I ever hit it was in 1st gear when I was drag racing someone. Otherwise, even during complete asinine behavior, I never hit the rev limiter.

    The TW, as mentioned above will just quit making power before you're even hurting it. So, my suggestion is to happily rev the snot out of it. Owners manuals are the worst place to look for advice on how to ride the machine. They're set up to get your 100 mpg and avoid liability lawsuits related to speed injuries at the risk of being run over by traffic
    1993 TW200

  9. #8
    Senior Member Phantom99's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2012
    San Diego, Calif.
    You brought a smile to my face. First time I ever saw anyone refer to a TW, in any gear under any circumstances as "FAST."

    It will definitely feel faster if you wind it out a bit in the gears. As the other posters said, these are strong little engines and not easily hurt.

    Wide open throttle won't hurt it a bit. Just don't hold that throttle wide open in a lower gear until it is maxed out all of the way. It would

    probably survive, but it would be abuse.

  10. #9
    Senior Member Dark Sol's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    I'll never understand how anybody could follow the shift points even if they wanted to. For the upper gears they're generally set so low that you will ruin your engine within a few thousand miles if you actually cruised at that speed.

    On my CRF230L it says to shift into 6th gear at 37 mph....yeah right. I can shift into 6th at 45 and even then it bogs down - 50 is the minimum cruise in 6th, anything below that and speed starts to drop rapidly and if you try to speed up the engine vibrates like crazy like something is being stressed and about to break. My CB919 is exactly the same....37 mph in 6th. That would put the engine speed at about 1,500....how in the hell are you supposed to run a 919cc inline 4 short-stroke (58mm) engine so slow in top gear? What were they thinking?! It'll pull 1,500 in 2nd gear, but not 6th. Not even close....do they just want you to ruin the engine?

    As for the TW, if you want the bike to last treat these speeds as the "red line" for each gear:

    1st: 20

    2nd: 30

    3rd: 40

    4th: 55

    5th: 70

    The actual red line is just a hair higher per gear, but this way leaves you plenty of room so you don't ever chance damaging the engine.
    2008 CRF230L

    2006 CBR1000RR

    2007 CB919 - 70k Miles and still runs like new!

    * 2001 TW200 (Sold after 15k miles of fun)

  11. #10
    Senior Member silverhead's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Central Iowa, USA
    I used to shift my Speed Triple into 6th gear at 35mph when cruising around town. The same gear that took me to 155mph
    1993 TW200

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