tehfire wrote:I've only dry-shifted my Kawi once, and that was on accident (I think from 3rd to 4th or something like that) and I was really surprised at how smooth the transition was. Either than transmission is amazing or I got really lucky. Is there any real advantage (or damage) to dry-shifting a bike?
Nothing substantial, I guess, just you do not need to press clutch, good for lazy guys like me. In theory you should be able to extend the life of the clutch, but if you use your clutch properly, clutch pretty much lasts life of the vehicle. Many people ride on the clutch, and thats why clucth worns out quickly.
In general bikes have multi-plate wet clutches vs big dry single plate clutch in cars and trucks. The multi-plate wet clutch( it is immersed in oil in the gearbox) typically can take more abuse than dry single plate clutch. I heard quite few times on cartalk about people who burned clutch in 100 miles( that is right 100 miles) in a car. That's highly unlikely( almost impossible) in the case of bike( ofcourse with multi-plate wet) in 100 miles.
Anyways irrespective of whether you use clucth or not, it is always good for the tranmission to match the engine and tranmission speeds for that gear, for both upshifting, and down shifting.
BTW, I never had to replace clutch or clutch plates in any of vehicles I used/owned. But now, there is no need to, as pretty much every one in US uses auto. If not for you, you need to have it with autotranmission for wife.
EDIT: I forgot to mention, unlike cars, Bike transmission gearshift pattern is sequential. That means to go to 5th gear you need to go thru 2-3-4 etc, and there is no neutral in-between(unless there is some false neutral), so it is not as easy car to do a clutch-less shift. Typically many bikes have neutral between 1st and 2nd ( or even before 1st gear), so it is easy to do it for the 2nd gear, but remaining gears you need lot of practice to shift smoothly( make sure no torque transmitted while shifting).
Ofcourse there are some exception, where few old bikes( may be some new) used to have universal neutral, so you can bring to neutral from any gear and shift to any gear directly. Some have 2 neutrals( between 1 -2 and 3-4). So you better be careful with bikes as you do not get a chance to match the engine and tranmission speeds.