How to Shift a Honda Shadow Spirit 750

by Seth Barker

Shifting a Honda Shadow Spirit 750 properly will effectively reduce fuel consumption as well as prolong transmission, drive train and engine wear and tear. The Honda Shadow Spirit 750 has a five-speed manual forward transmission. This model is configured with a "one down, four up" shift pattern.

Up Shifting

Turn on the power to the motorcycle, but do not start the engine. Check to see if the motorcycle is in neutral. If not, pull the clutch lever fully in and press the shift lever down with your left foot multiple times until it stops "clicking." You are now in first gear.

Put your foot under the shift lever with the clutch lever still in and lift up "1/2 click." The green indicator light should illuminate, indicating that the transission is in neutral. If not, repeat this until the light comes on.

Sitting on the motorcycle in the riding position with your feet planted firmly on the ground, pull the clutch lever fully in and hold it. Press the "Start" button to start the engine. Once the oil pressure light is no longer illuminated, prepare to depart.

Holding the bike upright from the seated position with the clutch lever still pulled fully in, gently slide some weight to the right side of the bike and use your left foot to step down on the shift lever until you hear a noticeable "clunk." It will feel and sound as if the chain has gotten tighter once the transmission has engaged.

Slowly let the clutch lever out while maintaining your balance until a safe speed of approximately 3 to 5 mph is achieved. This will allow the rider to put both feet on the foot pegs and prepare to shift into second gear.

Slowly add throttle until the motorcycle stops the steady acceleration or you achieve a very high level of rpm, usually about 12 to 15 mph (the manufacturer recommends 12 mph).

Pull the clutch lever fully in and shift into second gear by closing the throttle, placing your foot under the shift lever and lifting it up until you hear and feel a noticeable "click." Remember, the shift pattern for this motorcycle is one down, four up, making second gear one "click" upward. Release the clutch lever in a moderately quick yet smooth manor to engage second gear, then add power.

Accelerate in the same manner through third, fourth and fifth gears. The manufacturer recommends shifting into third gear at 19 mph, fourth gear at 25 mph and fifth gear at 31 mph. These speeds will vary depending on the terrain and traffic you experience. Use your best discretion, but make sure not to let the engine run at a very high rpm for too long before shifting.

Down Shifting

Release the throttle to stop acceleration or if the engine sounds like it's "lugging." Pull the clutch lever in and step on the shift lever until you hear and feel a "click," then slowly release the clutch. This is "downshifting." As you release the clutch, the rpms will rise. When the engine maintains a steady, non-abrasive purr, you have selected the appropriate gear for whatever speed you are at.

Choose the appropriate gear for the speed you are going. While downshifting, it is possible for you to shift all the way down to first gear by stepping on the shift lever four times and hearing a distinct "click" each time.

Be careful while downshifting, as "over-reving" the engine by selecting a gear that is too low for the speed you are traveling can damage the transmission and engine.

Tips

  • check Close the throttle and pull the clutch lever in fully before shifting.
  • check Learn the feeling that signals the point in which the transmission engages as you let the clutch lever out. This will assist in much smoother transitions as you shift.

Warning

  • close Avoid using the downshifting technique to slow your motorcycle down. This can cause damage to the engine and transmission.

References

About the Author

Seth Barker began writing professionally in 1996, implementing standard operating procedures for one of the largest hotel chains in the world. He specializes in instructional handbooks and has been published on various websites. Barker is studying aviation science at Flight School Hawaii in conjunction with the University of South Dakota.