I started riding motorcycles back in 1965 when my first bike was a brand new Harley Davidson M-50. It was a 50cc two stroke imported from Italy and top speed was 45 mph! From that point I was hooked and other than a short 20 year break, have been riding motorcycles ever since. I started doing track days about 10 years ago and that is when I got familiar with quick shifters. Being an electrical engineer by training I was not about to “buy” one so I designed and built my own first gen quick shifter for my track bike. It had electronic timing but included relays and a simple switch for the shift sensor. This served me well for many years until my business partner asked me to build one for his Kawasaki ZRX 1200. Well, since I had recently retired and needed a project to keep me busy I agreed and after the second prototype we believed we had something that could be shared with other riders that provided premium features at a less than premium cost.
Now getting from my first attempts at a quick shifter to here has not been without “active” learning..by that I mean stuff blowing up and failures! I had to replace two sets of coils in my race SV before it dawned on me that a 60 millisecond kill time stressed a motorcycle coil much more than a 2 millisecond spark coil charging time. The old duty cycle thing don’t you know. I also learned about just how high the reverse EMF (voltage) of a conventional spark coil primary can go towards blowing up a perfectly good transistor too! However, in the end I learned a lot about motorcycle ignition systems and how to make bullet proof quick shift units.
A little history on me..
I was raised in North Alabama and attended the University of Alabama where I graduated with a degree in Electrical Engineering. I always loved electronics and electronic design but unfortunately my career path lead me toward production management in the pulp and paper industry and I did not get to do what I loved..until now.. I have relished at the challenges of developing our products and always looking for a better way to accomplish the goal. In fact, I am probably working harder now than when I was working in the paper industry but it is a labor or love.
So when is the next track day?????
Quality Control / Testing
I have been a gear head pretty much since the day I was born. I fell in love with all things motorcycle when I was 14 and my next door neighbor brought home a Yamaha MX80 dirt bike. We built trails behind his house and rode that thing until our hands were numb.
I have been riding street bikes for 35 years, but really went off the rails when I rode on the racetrack for the first time 9 years ago. The track cravings became so strong that I became a track day instructor so I could drag others into my addiction. I met Richard at a track day and we became friends, and from this friendship, we developed the Galgo Moto Custom Quickshifter!
I put a quckshifter on my track bike that I bought from a well known company and loved it. If you don’t have one and don’t want to buy one from us, get one somewhere. They are a fantastic upgrade, and you will wonder how you ever rode without one!
The problem is, I can’t leave well enough alone and, while the unit I bought worked well enough at the racetrack, I had a lot of questions . What happens when the microswitch wears out? How does it continue to provide the proper preload on the transmission as it wears? Why can’t I adjust kill times on the fly so I can adapt it to a street bike? Can I find one that will be reliable for a street bike like my old Kawasaki ZRX1200? Will it work at low rpm settings during street riding? Why do I have to buy another $120.00 switch if I want to switch my setup from standard to GP, or change the direction of the shift with different rear sets?
Lucky for me, Richard had some answers, and he figured out the rest. After several prototypes, we will have a production model of our patent pending dual strain gauge quick shifter soon!