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Is the Auto Shift Thing Going to Catch On?

Jarrett

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Or has it already had its day?

I know Honda has 7 or 8 bikes with the DCT shifting technology. I've got one, I dig it. Easier on a newbie like me. Less thinking, more enjoying.

Are other manufacturers doing it? Or have they done it already and decided to move away from it?

In general, is that technology coming or going in the motorcycle world? What say the TWT psychics?

I think if there was a KTM Super Adventure R DCT model in existence today, I'd be like...

acb.jpg
 
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Funny, I just wrote a rant on the FJR forum today about Yamaha not handling their issues with the YCCS bikes in the USA and killed any future sales thus ending the models life here.

I like that Honda are doing what they are doing, I keep wishing for a DCT FJR, I'd be tempted to trade the old girl in even though she's not all used up yet. My bike rocks as a commuter and I love the push button shifting.
 
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Yeah, it's going to catch on. It might take 10 years or an entire generation, but I think some form of clutchless system will surpass manuals, become the norm, and become all there is.
 
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no. and get off my lawn. :nana:
Where's the "like" button when you need it?

I have to admit that I really enjoy riding my Burgman 650 and I have only used the push button 3 or 4 times in the last year. But, when I really want to have fun, I ride my FZ10 or my SV650.
 
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I remember in about 1984 hearing predictions by the industry that as the compact disc gained ground, the LP would phase out in, oh, 10-15 years. In 1987, Eric Clapton and Phil Collins both released new albums that completely bypassed the LP market, and the handwriting was on the wall. Took about another year until they were relegated to the back rooms of "audiophile" stores.

Exotic sports cars are going clutchless really fast. I don't think Ferrari has anything with a manual clutch, and I recently read that US enthusiasts are the only reason the Boxter and Cayman still have them as "options." Formula 1 cars have hand - actually, finger - clutches. They're used once in the race, which is to get the car off the starting grid. And that is solely because the rules dictate it as a sop to the purists (of which I am arguably one).

Newspapers? Reading Time Magazine (if you can find one) in a barber shop (if you can find one). The world marches on and progress is merciless.

But if it happens in my riding lifetime, I'll sure miss my inefficient but beloved clutch.
 

woodsguy

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Tim nailed it, progress rather we like it or not! I've had the new model Vettes both ways and why I enjoyed shifting, the auto performed so much better, fact.
 

JT

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I like shifting. The last automatic transmission car I bought was in 1984. I have never bought an automatic pickup. I need a new pickup and I will probably buy used because the few that are still produced with manuals are never kept in stock.
 
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I like shifting. The last automatic transmission car I bought was in 1984. I have never bought an automatic pickup. I need a new pickup and I will probably buy used because the few that are still produced with manuals are never kept in stock.
I like shifting too. Sometimes. When I had my MINI going through the gears was a ton of fun. Sitting in traffic working the clutch over and over and over and over was not fun. Traffic is for automatics.

Each has it's place, even in motorcycles. That's why I enjoy having the FJR with push button shifting for touring and commuting, and the GSX-S1000 with standard shifting for tearing up the fun stuff.

The fact is though, technology will continue to get better and better and in a lot of cases now, the technology in automatics can do the job better than the driver/rider.
 

TWTim

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Tim nailed it, progress rather we like it or not!
Yep. But it's sad that technological progression is so often utilized to facilitate (and even encourage) human regression.
 
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Both have their place.

If motorcycling is to survive, it needs to adapt, and automatics/clutchless shifting is one of those things that will bring in and keep new riders.

Scooters in large cities are catching on partially for the ease to ride. Just hop on and twist the throttle. Those with a scooter can easily transition to a larger bike if it was the same as the scooter. They can't/won't/don't want bother with learning how to shift/clutch/throttle at the same time.

I enjoy driving a manual, but don't own one (besides the bike). It is just not practical for driving in traffic. The bike gets me my manual fix, so I can't see myself getting anything but a manual bike for any time in future.
Plus my wife can't drive a stick (I have tried).

I would like a beater manual car to teach my kids on, just so they know how.
 
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Also, kind of passing under the radar in this section, look at the number of motorcycles being produced with stock quick shifters these days.
 
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What I've always wondered about DCT bikes (and electric bikes) is what new technology/mechanism will replace the manual clutch's ability to be smoothly modulated for creep-speed maneuvers. I'm surprised to never hear a motojournalist or YouTuber mention that when reviewing these bikes because I remember clutch/throttle modulation being a key skill taught in MSF courses.

For example, I've read and heard from numerous sources that the Ford Fiesta with the DCT has a super twitchy throttle when trying to creep forward. I imagine the same technology will make some parking lot maneuvers pretty difficult on a bike.
 
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The more the flannel wearing crown keep taking over things, then yes, its an inevitability...
 

Jarrett

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I imagine the same technology will make some parking lot maneuvers pretty difficult on a bike.
It's actually the opposite for me. I just recently did an advanced rider course where a lot of it was the slow precision stuff they do in the police competitions and I kinda felt like I was cheating a bit. The clutch folks were having a much more difficult time with it, quite a few stalls and drops.

The Africa Twin DCT will keep rolling at 5-6 mph unless you force it under that speed. So I could just give it a little throttle, get to the 5 mph auto pilot mode, then navigate through the obstacle courses at that speed without touching the brake or throttle and not having to worry about feathering the clutch, just had to focus on steering solely.
 
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I think if you like to creep and do things slow and technical it can be beneficial. It certainly seems like it would allow allow you to focus more on balance and approach towards obstacles at slower speeds but I think the thing I was always wary of would be its ability to respond to a need to lift the front tire suddenly, like when popping a clutch wheelie. Especially if you are trying to clear a stubborn obstacle. Seems like the DCT would not be able to torque up fast enough like when you rev and clutch bump...
 
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It's actually the opposite for me. I just recently did an advanced rider course where a lot of it was the slow precision stuff they do in the police competitions and I kinda felt like I was cheating a bit. The clutch folks were having a much more difficult time with it, quite a few stalls and drops.

The Africa Twin DCT will keep rolling at 5-6 mph unless you force it under that speed. So I could just give it a little throttle, get to the 5 mph auto pilot mode, then navigate through the obstacle courses at that speed without touching the brake or throttle and not having to worry about feathering the clutch, just had to focus on steering solely.
Thanks for your input! I suppose I have no room to talk until I try one out myself.:rider:
 

Jarrett

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I think the thing I was always wary of would be its ability to respond to a need to lift the front tire suddenly, like when popping a clutch wheelie. Especially if you are trying to clear a stubborn obstacle. Seems like the DCT would not be able to torque up fast enough like when you rev and clutch bump...
That's probably true. I haven't needed that yet. I can get the front wheel off the ground, but its under specific circumstances.

Wondering if any of the other Africa Twin DCT riders here have been in that situation?
 
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[ame="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eZ3ijMbb82w"]Honda's DCT Transmission - Johnny Campbell - YouTube[/ame]

Two things...

1) I wish I fit that well on a bike that size.

2) If I commuted on a daily in traffic I would rock one for sure and it could be beneficial off road for the reason he mentioned.
 

JT

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Honda's DCT Transmission - Johnny Campbell - YouTube

Two things...

1) I wish I fit that well on a bike that size.

2) If I commuted on a daily in traffic I would rock one for sure and it could be beneficial off road for the reason he mentioned.
My 300XCW has a Rekluse installed by the previous owner. I agree that it is easier, not necessarily better, under technical conditions. But, the Rekluse is not a DCT. I can still operate the clutch manually when I want/need to. And, a Rekluse auto clutch does not prevent me from controlling all shift points, both up and down. In the video Johnny is not commenting on shifting, only the auto clutch aspect.
 
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The FJR isn't DCT but the computer controls the clutch and I can creep along no problems. The AE version will wheelie, though I'm not sure I've seen anyone hop it over logs! :eek2: :giveup:

I'm not saying MY ae fjr will wheelie, but others are capable of doing so. But that's more to the rider than the bike. :rider:
 
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I think if you like to creep and do things slow and technical it can be beneficial. It certainly seems like it would allow allow you to focus more on balance and approach towards obstacles at slower speeds but I think the thing I was always wary of would be its ability to respond to a need to lift the front tire suddenly, like when popping a clutch wheelie. Especially if you are trying to clear a stubborn obstacle. Seems like the DCT would not be able to torque up fast enough like when you rev and clutch bump...
I haven't watched the video posted by Weekend Warrior. But I do remember when the AT was being shown to the press all over the world just weeks prior to general release. Motor journalists were pretty consistently surprised by the DCT, and more than a few stated they actually liked it better on dirt than the manual.
 
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I like shifting. The last automatic transmission car I bought was in 1984. I have never bought an automatic pickup. I need a new pickup and I will probably buy used because the few that are still produced with manuals are never kept in stock.
Same here except the year was 1988 and reason was that car was shared with the wife who couldn't really even drive so shifting was out of the question. My next new truck will be a RAM for this reason (and Cummin's diesel).
 

copb8

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I'm tempted to go the Rekluse route on the 690. On my last trip one bike had it and the others didn't. The 690 has a pretty tall 1st and it was a lot of work working through the technical and very steep bits with the bike loaded up. The Rekluse bike made it so much easier! Just twist and go.

I've resisted the urge to go that direction because I love shifting. So satisfying in both a car and on a bike. But I'm thinking the 50/50 nature of the 690 would really benefit from an auto-clutch. Now, $800 worth? I'm not sure yet.
 
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..bring on the new technology.
...where would we all be reading this and conversing....if not for the computer...!!
....unplug and revert to pen and paper.
.....send me a letter with your thoughts.
 
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well, now days there is no real reason to avoid automatics, it's not like voodoo or something. Often now days if you want the best options in a truck (as far as power train and towing capacity) you will have to have the automatic, sorry to say. I'm sure there may be a few exceptions but for the most part they have moved on.
 

JT

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well, now days there is no real reason to avoid automatics, it's not like voodoo or something. Often now days if you want the best options in a truck (as far as power train and towing capacity) you will have to have the automatic, sorry to say. I'm sure there may be a few exceptions but for the most part they have moved on.
Friend of mine had a auto fail in a Jeep at 78,000 miles. Cost $6000 to fix. Between ridiculous repair costs and increased chance of failures, it's just not for me.
 
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Friend of mine had a auto fail in a Jeep at 78,000 miles. Cost $6000 to fix. Between ridiculous repair costs and increased chance of failures, it's just not for me.
Jeep.

There's also the million mile Tundra with original transmission.

My clutch alone on my standard transmission MINI was going to cost me $3K. There were folks having to replace them at 30K miles sometimes.

One thing does not equal the other here.
 
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Friend of mine had a auto fail in a Jeep at 78,000 miles. Cost $6000 to fix. Between ridiculous repair costs and increased chance of failures, it's just not for me.
There is always going to some small percentage of workmanship errors or manufacturing issues that cause a failure but its just as possible on a standard as it is an automatic. I'd rather bank on the odds of it not happening but also not buying something that doesn't have a reasonable power train warranty as well. It's never a reason to abandon any one platform forever. If that were the case everyone would think the small block chevy was junk because of all the 305 turds from the 80's... :zen:
 

JT

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Jeep.

There's also the million mile Tundra with original transmission.

My clutch alone on my standard transmission MINI was going to cost me $3K. There were folks having to replace them at 30K miles sometimes.

One thing does not equal the other here.
I thought I heard the rep say that reverse went out on the Million Mile Tundra. They glossed over it pretty quickly, you have to listen close.

I replaced the clutch in my Ford ranger myself. Clutch, throwout bearing, slave cylinder and input shaft bearing, +/- $300.
 
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I am all for easy and faster. I have had bi level spine fusion and my left hand and arm have permanent impairment but that has not stopped me on my dirt bike quite yet. I have a bike or two with Rekluses but like JT sez the beauty about those is full manual clutch control.

Which brings me to my next point. With a DCT tranny, there is not a way to clutch up a wheelie. I will quit riding if I can't wheelie my 950 whenever the mood strikes. It is what makes me happy in life. The Lubbock police may be happy if I quit riding (yes there is a story there :lol2:) but I will not be.

They need to figure out a manual clutch override with the DCT. then all would be good.
 
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Jarrett

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With a DCT tranny, there is not a way to clutch up a wheelie.
I'm not sure what clutch up a wheelie means, but a wheelie can be had on the DCT Africa Twin, but only when traction control is off, in manual mode, at 25+mph in first gear. Then can wheelie as much as you want.

I haven't had the... courage to see if it will do the same thing towards the end of 2nd gear yet :)
 
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I'm not sure what clutch up a wheelie means, but a wheelie can be had on the DCT Africa Twin, but only when traction control is off, in manual mode, at 25+mph in first gear. Then can wheelie as much as you want.

I haven't had the... courage to see if it will do the same thing towards the end of 2nd gear yet :)

Exactly, the clutch wheelie is needed on rough trails to get over down trees and up ledges. A lot of times at walking speeds.
 
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My 300XCW has a Rekluse installed by the previous owner. I agree that it is easier, not necessarily better, under technical conditions. But, the Rekluse is not a DCT. I can still operate the clutch manually when I want/need to. And, a Rekluse auto clutch does not prevent me from controlling all shift points, both up and down. In the video Johnny is not commenting on shifting, only the auto clutch aspect.

With the Rekluse you can still retain the clutch if you choose to correct? so if you have to clutch for a wheelie you can?
 
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With the Rekluse you can still retain the clutch if you choose to correct? so if you have to clutch for a wheelie you can?


Answer is yes, but it's a $300 option for full clutch functionality. Otherwise you're left with heavy resistance on the clutch lever.

Rekluses help reduce fatigue on long rides over rough terrain. It does require a bit of TLC to keep it slaved properly, and you lose the ability to drag the rear wheel with gearing on descents. But when you're 3+ hours into a ride, having the ability to simply roll the throttle through technical sections pays dividends.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

mitchntx

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jack-d-ripper-300x233.jpg


Mandrake, it's a communist plot to rob you and I of our precious bodily fluids ... oh, and the use of our left hand.
 
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I hope it catches on.

I'm not the intended market. Nor am I the intended market for V6 Mustangs or 4-cylinder FWD Malibus; but those are the bread and butter for the brand and what allows Ford and Chevy to create and sell Mustang Cobras and Corvette Z06's.

I doubt an automatic motorcycle will take over the market share, but anything that opens up motorcycling to more people is a good thing. As Americans, sometimes I feel we are our worst enemy. You go to other countries and all motorcyclists share that common bond. Over here we have folks from different brands and styles pointing their noses up at each other.
 

OldTLSDoug

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So, I must most assuredly agree with Mitch. I have issues with Anti-Lock Brakes as well. Two reasons:

1.
P1011404.jpg


2.
P1011405.jpg


more reason.....

_MG_4851.jpg


I would also argue that you could wheelie an auto clutch....

P1060122.jpg


P1060091.jpg


But stoppies are tough on some anti-locks, could not stoppie this thing with anti-lock on

20141212_091010.jpg
 
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Cool idea from MV. Saves on development of tech and likely just fits into parts they already made. little design change. Some of the dirt bike installs use a thicker clutch cover which actually adds a little more oil capacity.

The early versions of the Recluse started with 2 different companies. The clutch action really sucked. Recluse bought out the other company for their technology. They offered both for a bit, but have come up with the combo that works well. Replaces minimal parts compared to stock. The newer version clutch action is nice. Freewheel down hills with no engine breaking (some use it on 4 strokes) and no clutch to start. I jumped on a buddies without knowing it had once on it and it works well. You can override the clutch action with the lever or not use it if you want. idle at stops with a twist of the throttle to get moving if you want. Heavy braking can still kill the bike as I managed to after I remembered it had one. I think it had more to do with adjustment than overall function. manually shift.

I will say this. The bike I rode my buddy smoked the clutch in the race. It constantly slips the clutch for you to give traction and easy shifting. If you ride around in the wrong gear or have it out of adjustment long it will smoke fibers and overheat the plates. He did it at a muddy race. Thankfully he a day left on the warranty. They sent him a complete new one. I think he got a handle on it.

Sounds interesting for street use. Might be cool with the V-strom, but since I don't commute in traffic at all with it I don't think I would actually need it or like it.
 
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Jarrett

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I heard a story at a KTM shop last weekend about a new rider buying a 1290 R with a Rekluse clutch and completely destroying the clutch in short order.

Made me go :ponder: as I was thinking that kind of setup might be my next thing.
 
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