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Hello everyone, I just recently purchase my 2016 Ninja 650 and I have a few questions about shifting.

First and foremost, my bike says for the break-in period, do not go over 4K RPM. What are everyone's thoughts on this? Almost everyone I talk to says I should be normally shifting around 6k RPM.

Second, what are the normal speeds associated with each gear?(1st|0-15mph, 2nd|15-25mph, etc...) I ask because my manual says I should be going from 1st to 2nd at 9mph, then 2nd to 3rd at 15mph, and 3rd to 4th at 25 mph. These seem VERY low to me, but then again, I'm a new rider.
 

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For peace of mind, I followed the break in periods for my bike.Some people don't, and have no problems. But no matter what anyone says, engine parts need to "bed in" and even with new materials, parts still flex and shift. It's a small price to pay for peace of mind. I have the feeling all the small engine problems that appear before they should (valve adjustment) are cause by racing the engine too soon.

The shift speeds in the manual are painfully slow, but certain situations will decide when you shift. Merging onto a highway, with traffic stacked behind you, you're going to bring the RPM s up nice an high. In a residential neighborhood at 3 AM, you might decide to be a little more quiet. Personally, I think any shifts under 3000 RPM is lugging the engine a little too much.

Have you taken an MSF course? I highly recommend them, as you get to learn the basics of riding in a closed course with instructors. And if anything goes wrong, you're dropping their little 250 (which happened to me....standing beside the bike :| ) and not your brand new bike. My insurance cost for my 2nd year of riding dropped almost $500, which paid for the course haha.

Keep digging around on here. There's a ton of info for new riders and a huge 650 section. Enjoy the bike!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
For peace of mind, I followed the break in periods for my bike.Some people don't, and have no problems. But no matter what anyone says, engine parts need to "bed in" and even with new materials, parts still flex and shift. It's a small price to pay for peace of mind. I have the feeling all the small engine problems that appear before they should (valve adjustment) are cause by racing the engine too soon.

The shift speeds in the manual are painfully slow, but certain situations will decide when you shift. Merging onto a highway, with traffic stacked behind you, you're going to bring the RPM s up nice an high. In a residential neighborhood at 3 AM, you might decide to be a little more quiet. Personally, I think any shifts under 3000 RPM is lugging the engine a little too much.

Have you taken an MSF course? I highly recommend them, as you get to learn the basics of riding in a closed course with instructors. And if anything goes wrong, you're dropping their little 250 (which happened to me....standing beside the bike :| ) and not your brand new bike. My insurance cost for my 2nd year of riding dropped almost $500, which paid for the course haha.

Keep digging around on here. There's a ton of info for new riders and a huge 650 section. Enjoy the bike!
Yeah, when I shift to the next gear under 3K rpm, I can tell the engine struggles for a second, but thats what my manual says to do.
I am signed up to take an MSF course at the beginning of next month, trying to do this whole thing as smart and safe as possible.
 

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I recommend following the break-in procedure. What you don't want to do is lug the engine. No worries if it happens, just try to avoid it.
 

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I was told by my dealership when I got my '15 650 that the breakin period is nice but it would be ok to rev the engine through the gears, and really feel the engine out. The bike was under a full manufacture and dealership warranty and said if any problems came up, it would be fixed anyways.
 

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Hello everyone, I just recently purchase my 2016 Ninja 650 and I have a few questions about shifting.

First and foremost, my bike says for the break-in period, do not go over 4K RPM. What are everyone's thoughts on this? Almost everyone I talk to says I should be normally shifting around 6k RPM.

Second, what are the normal speeds associated with each gear?(1st|0-15mph, 2nd|15-25mph, etc...) I ask because my manual says I should be going from 1st to 2nd at 9mph, then 2nd to 3rd at 15mph, and 3rd to 4th at 25 mph. These seem VERY low to me, but then again, I'm a new rider.
Just bought a Z900 brand new, I've had a bunch of used bikes before.Im following the manual to break it in properly, because it's the way to do things properly, not what other people tell me, who don't really know **** anyways.Motorcycle engines and transmissions have much tighter tolerances than automobiles usually do, so a proper break in is more essential. Shiftup to 4000 for the first 500 miles, don't stay at a steady RPM or speed long, it's ok to do some harder pulls up to 4000, then no more than 6000 RPM from 500-1000 miles, have the oil changed at 600 miles, after 1000 miles work your way up in the power band slowly if you're not used to riding, alot of bikes come on hard after 6000 rpm.The listed shift speeds in the manual are the minimum speeds to upshift without lugging the engine.
 

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Take the factory recommendations as "gospel" as much as possible. Break is tedious for a short time and will setup a lot of the quality and longevity that it will have.
 

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Take the factory recommendations as "gospel" as much as possible. Break is tedious for a short time and will setup a lot of the quality and longevity that it will have.
Yes I just hit 380 miles 4000 rpm max at 500 miles 6000 rpm max, then I'll be able to hit the interstate 70 mph in 6th gear instead of all 45-55 mph back roads! Yahhh
 

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Yes I just hit 380 miles 4000 rpm max at 500 miles 6000 rpm max, then I'll be able to hit the interstate 70 mph in 6th gear instead of all 45-55 mph back roads! Yahhh
Believe me, back roads are infinitely more fun than interstates. Unless maybe you are in a truck and trailer combo. So, you are not missing anything.
 

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Yah I'm in a tractor trailer 5 days a week in the city.some of the back roads I take are bumpy as hell though.
 

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Take the factory recommendations as "gospel" as much as possible.
I wouldn't.

The break-in instructions in the Kawasaki manuals are EXACTLY the same for my 2008 KLR650 single cylinder as it is for my 2017 Ninja. They're also exactly the same in pretty much every genuine Kawasaki manual for pretty much every road bike - and there's plenty of different engines all with varying rev ranges.

I talked to a few dealership owners, who have raced and run in hundreds of engines between them and they all said to ride the bike! Do a few runs where you roll on the power through the torque curve a few times in different gears with different loads, vary up the revs, generally take it easy with the clutch and brakes and walways warm it up properly. Mix it up a bit, get out in the country, even rev it up close to the redline a few times, lots of full heating/cooling cyclies. No need to "baby" it below 4000rpm. In fact that might not be a good thing at all.

Break In Secrets--How To Break In New Motorcycle and Car Engines For More Power

But each to their own.
 

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Oh yeah, good post. My old N650 FI manual said the same thing. Yes, I broke in my Ninja for about the first 600/1000 miles; did the oil change & everything. I kept the rpms to, no more than roughly 1/2 way & allowed the engine to go, through the normal heat & cool off cycles. The exact rpms, I played it, by ear, but never gunned it or took it to 10k, until way later. Obviously, we can't shift at 4k but the point is, to not race the engine.:agree:
 
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