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I'm starting to think that maybe I baby my bike (2012 Ninja 1000) too much; I usually shift around 4k RPM up to cruising speed, and then at 60mph (in 6th gear), the RPMs start creeping up as I go faster, but I read a lot of people who talk about shifting/cruising in at much higher ranges. I also understand that at 4k in 6th gear, I may not have the available power to "adapt to a situation" as another member put it.

Should I be shifting/cruising at 6-7k?

Have I been riding wrong? Should I be letting my engine work a little harder? I'm not terribly concerned about fuel economy - mainly just safety and what's good for the engine.
 

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4k RPM is almost lugging the engine, even on a 1000. Wind that baby up and let her breathe. YOu'll eventually find that "sweet spot" in the RPM range where she likes to hang when at steady throttle.
 

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I have a Z 1000 GEN four and it’s geared so close to the other gears I can’t tell the difference most of the time. When I’m riding at highway speed’s I’m doing about 5000 RPMs or a little more which I kind of think is a lot compared to all the other bikes have ever owned. I don’t think it’s necessarily a bad thing as it is something that I just need to get used to with this bike. Historically I would downshift a gear or two and then grab a lot of throttle if I wanted to pass somebody. But not with the Z 1000 there’s so much torque even in six gear I can grab a handful of throttle and the bike will takeoff quickly. I figure kawasaki designed the bike this way so it must be OK to be at higher engine speed while cruising +70mph. if it really bothers you you could go to a smaller rear sprocket which should help drop your engine speed but you will lose some of your acceleration performance as a trade off. I’ve considered doing this if I ever decide to do some very long trips but then change it back to the stock sprocket when I return home.

122674
 

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IMHO, biggest mistake most riders make is keeping the RPMs too low. Motorcycle engines are not car engines; they are meant to be operated at high RPMs. At higher RPMs the engine is more responsive, it's more fun, and you have better engine braking. If you are blasting through the twisties, optimal RPM is where the engine produces peak torque, which is around 8,000 +/- 750
 

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IMHO, biggest mistake most riders make is keeping the RPMs too low. Motorcycle engines are not car engines; they are meant to be operated at high RPMs. At higher RPMs the engine is more responsive, it's more fun, and you have better engine braking. If you are blasting through the twisties, optimal RPM is where the engine produces peak torque, which is around 8,000 +/- 750
Reading this is so satisfying knowing that my bike isn't meant to be at a low speed.
 
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