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• Adjust each mirror so you can see the
   lane behind, and as much as possible of
   the other lanes on the road next to you.
   When properly adjusted, a mirror will
   show the edge of your arm or shoulder.
   Remember that objects in your mirrors
   may be closer than they look. Never rely
   entirely on your mirrors, especially when
   changing lanes.
• Ensure your motorcycle is in neutral.
• Turn the fuel switch to ON, if equipped.
• Set the engine cut-off switch to the
   RUN position.
• Open the choke (if your motorcycle
   has one) or wait until the fuel injection
   light is OFF.
• Press the starter button until the
   motorcycle starts, and then release.
• Ensure the engine is warmed and
   running smoothly.
• Slowly close the choke (if equipped).
• Ensure the lights are turned on.

Before starting to ride, be sure your
intended path is safe.
• Check that the path in front of you is
   clear of children, pedestrians, obstacles
   and other traffic.
• Check each mirror.
• Look over your shoulder in the
   direction you will be moving to
   check your blind spot.
• Use your signal light and arm signal
   (optional). Proceed when it is safe
   and legal.
• Choose the lane and position in the
   lane that allows other road users to
   see you. Ride where drivers can see
   you when they look ahead or in their
   rear view mirrors.

Signalling

Do not confuse other drivers by signalling
too early or too late. Cancel the signal
light if it does not turn off automatically.
Hand signals can be used as well as a
signal light. This will make you and your
intentions more visible to others.

Manual (standard)
transmissions

While some motorcycles have an
automatic transmission, most have a
manual transmission and these require
coordination between the throttle, clutch
and gear selector by the operator. Shifting
gears on a motorcycle equipped with a
manual transmission is a skill that requires
considerable practice. You must learn to
change gears using your left foot to operate
the gear shift lever and your left hand to
operate the clutch lever. Your right hand will
operate the throttle and front brake. Your
right foot will operate the rear brake.

The engine provides power. The clutch
lever is used to engage and disengage
power from the engine to the rear wheel.
When you squeeze the clutch lever,
the connection to the transmission is

 

CHAPTER FOUR                                                                   THE BASICS OF SAFE OPERATING AND RIDING  25

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