Motorcycle Air Shifters Explained
Air Shifters are used to allow fast mechanical shifts with the use of air pressure.
A shift cylinder is attached to the motorcycle shift mechanism either by the shift lever directly or by an additional bracket. A solenoid valve controls the air supply to the shift cylinder via the compressed air source, such as an air tank in the swingarm/chassis or a regulated high-pressure supply. When the rider wants to make a shift, a button is pressed that gives a signal to the solenoid to open. This causes the compressed air to enter the shift cylinder and push or pull on the shift mechanism just like the rider’s foot normally would.
Another key component that is required is an engine power cut. This is commonly called a “kill box”. This works by cutting the ignition or fuel supply to the engine for a very brief period of time (30-90ms) while the air shifter is activated. This allows the transmission to shift into gear without the use of the clutch.
Since all shifting is done with an electronic signal, you can wire the bike to automatically shift at a preset RPM with the use of an RPM activated switch or by using an engine power cut that has an auto-shift feature.
Most riders prefer to use the stock horn button as their air shift activation, which is perfect since Schnitz Racing offers wiring supplies and instructions on how to do that.
Motorcycle Air Shifters
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222 N 3rd Street • Decatur, IN 46733
Phone: (260) 728-9457