I hope this will be of help to those who get a new bike.
SIMPLIFIED BICYCLE GEAR CHANGING INSTRUCTIONS
You will notice two sets of levers mounted on the handlebars:
The right hand lever assembly is used for changing gears on the rear wheel. Operating the smaller of the two levers sends the chain down a cog size, which means the bike has gone up a gear. You can then ride faster stamina permitting. Operating the larger lever moves the chain up a cog size which is down a gear. Then your legs have to go round round very fast to get anywhere.
The rules reverse completely for the left hand lever assembly. The large lever moves the chain on the pedal crank up a cog size, which in this case really does mean up a gear (bear in mind that the big lever on the other side also sends the chain up a cog size but then the bike goes down a gear). Therefore to summarise: A push with the thumbs on the big levers on either side will move the chain onto the next cog size up. The next size up on the pedal crank puts the bike up a gear (hard work). However, the next size up on the rear wheel gears means the bike goes down a gear (easier work).
The smaller levers are pulled with the forefingers. On both sides, pulling these will move the chain down a cog size back or front. So, pulling the left small lever moves the chain on the pedal crank down to a smaller cog and, consequently, down a gear. Pulling the right small lever puts the chain down a cog size on the wheel but puts the bike up a gear.
The three cogs on the pedal crank and the seven cogs on the back wheel all add up to a combination of twenty-one possible mistakes. To avoid colliding with obstacles, do not look down at the gears when getting used to your new bike.
This should clear up any confusion on gear changing.
(Come back the Sturmey-Archer three-speed hub, all is forgiven! )
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