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Clutch Center Orientation
#792508 12/10/19 3:39 am
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Getting ready to re-assemble my 70 TR6C clutch cush drive I noticed that the housing can be reversed. The housing, or clutch center as the Parts manual calls it, can be flipped. The only difference is the depth of the rabbet cut for the two covers. One rabbet it 0.380 in. deep and the other 0.260 in. I think the deeper rabbet was inside, adjacent the clutch hub, but there's nothing to prevent re-assembling with the center reversed. The cush drive assembly would move outboard 0.120 in. but everything else would re-position on the splines to the same position. It would change the contact point on the splines for the steel splines, but the plates would still be located laterally by the basket. Before I re-assemble and Loctite everything and find out it won't work, I thought I would ask this experienced group if they think it matters. The Parts manual, Shop manual and a Glenn Shop manual don't mention it. Is this a way to change wear points on the cush drive housing? If it matters I would think Triumph would bother to caution the assembler, but other stuff like this is absent the Shop manual.

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Re: Clutch Center Orientation
TrophyGuy #792518 12/10/19 4:20 am
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I am on #4 episode of lowbrow customs tutorial. Will try to pay particular attention but I don't know for sure if the answer is there.

Re: Clutch Center Orientation
TrophyGuy #792522 12/10/19 5:09 am
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High TrophyGuy. The center spider the recessed splines are on outside meaning on the left side of machine.

For the cush hub, put spring bore hole at 12 o'clock The bolt hole that holds on side plates will be at 1 o'clock. This true for countersink screw & through bolt types. Always re swage bolt end through bolt type.

The back plate bulges out in center to be thrust surface for basket. The front plate is flat.

If you assemble it backwards it won't bolt up anyway because spring hole will be where screw hole is on back plate.

There is no way to improve wear I could find. It is what it is. When worn all worn parts must be replaced or clutch won't really ever work properly.

The major wear is on the center spider & back plate. Back plate is hardened so wear would have to be ground off. The spider could be turned. Then cush hub outer shoulder would need to be turned to take up clearance. Still the grooves for steel plates wear. Filing them can be done, but it never really works right if you remove much metal. Been there done that. My feeling is Taiwan parts are as good as UK made. Very sad statement, but seems true. The certainly don't fit as good as Genuine Triumph parts did. Good used hard to find now.
Don


1973 Tiger 750
Re: Clutch Center Orientation
TR7RVMan #792541 12/10/19 4:40 pm
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Originally Posted by TR7RVMan
High TrophyGuy. The center spider the recessed splines are on outside meaning on the left side of machine.

For the cush hub, put spring bore hole at 12 o'clock The bolt hole that holds on side plates will be at 1 o'clock. This true for countersink screw & through bolt types. Always re swage bolt end through bolt type.

The back plate bulges out in center to be thrust surface for basket. The front plate is flat.

If you assemble it backwards it won't bolt up anyway because spring hole will be where screw hole is on back plate.

There is no way to improve wear I could find. It is what it is. When worn all worn parts must be replaced or clutch won't really ever work properly.

The major wear is on the center spider & back plate. Back plate is hardened so wear would have to be ground off. The spider could be turned. Then cush hub outer shoulder would need to be turned to take up clearance. Still the grooves for steel plates wear. Filing them can be done, but it never really works right if you remove much metal. Been there done that. My feeling is Taiwan parts are as good as UK made. Very sad statement, but seems true. The certainly don't fit as good as Genuine Triumph parts did. Good used hard to find now.
Don


Thanks TR7RVMan. My 3-D situational awareness is weak for this Rubik's cube, but now that I play with the parts clean on a bench I see how it works. I see what you mean about back plate wear. My spider legs have worn three shallow scallops. Seems that the spider should not thrust against either end plate. I'm going to fiddle with the spacing of the spider in the center section before I assemble and locktiite the assembly. Might interpose a very thin spacer to space the spider legs off the back end plate. Metal-to-metal rubbing can't improve shock absorber function.

Re: Clutch Center Orientation
TrophyGuy #792550 12/10/19 7:15 pm
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Hi TrophyGuy, Before you make spacer, trial assemble with hub & basket. See how the 3 spring studs pull back plate into spider. Your thrust washer must support that load. I always wondered if a hardened spider would help? Not much lube there either.
Please keep us informed on progress. Interesting subject.
Don


1973 Tiger 750
Re: Clutch Center Orientation
TrophyGuy #792559 12/10/19 9:31 pm
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It's those three indents worn into the back plate by the spider arms, that cause the annoying irregular 'clacking' noise from the primary when in neutral (if the rubbers are a bit worn, anyway). There's certainly room for design improvement here.


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Re: Clutch Center Orientation
TrophyGuy #792560 12/10/19 9:35 pm
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+1 to TR7RV's info.

The deeper rebate in the absorber drum faces toward the gearbox.
Along with the stepped backplate, it allows the room for the heads of the spring bolts (which would otherwise jam against the drum surface, locking the clutch up).

The wear that you have found is typical and inevitable on the unit clutch. It is a consequence of it being the same design as the pre-unit clutch (which didn't have this issue) with one apparently small change for the unit clutch (for sound reasons) that resulted in this wear pattern.

That change was the removal of the lip at the back of the absorber drum.

With the lip in the pre-unit clutch, the spring clamping force is contained entirely by the absorber drum and backplate (as both the spring bolt retaining force AND the resulting clamping force of the plates are on the same piece). There is no axial force drawing the drum and backplate out to forceful cotact with the spider.

In the unit clutch, the absence of the lip means that the force of the clamped plates is returned to the gearbox mainshaft instead. This means that the spring force now acts to pull the absorber drum/backplate axially toward the end of the mainshaft. As the spider is effectively part of the mainshaft, the backplate ends up strongly forced against the spider vanes.
That contact force is of course the full force of the clutch springs, no wonder that spider to plate contact wears rapidly!
Of course, as the spider vanes wear into the plate, the ahock absorption ability will degrade, as what sould be the free movement between the two (originally smooth surfaces) will be impeded by the "cam action" of the slopes in the wear pattern.

All parts are available separately, so while about it, new backplate and maybe spider and rubbers may be sensible.

Your idea of an internal shim is interesting, and if you have the facilities I would like to see how it goes. It could be a worthwhile experiment with the worn parts you have.
The shim should be as wide OD as possible to spread the spider vane to backplate load (as TR7RV said, it has to take the spring load). However, I can't see where the shim would go, unless you relieved the inner ends of the spider vanes to make room for it. The shim disc could only be to the OD within the spring bolt housings, if it is to have the possibility to rotate for evenness of wear around the circumference. This isn't very big.

However, even then I suspect the new shim/washer will be clamped in pretty much one orientation, so the wear will be in the same regions, only over smaller areas of contact, so the wear will be more rapid.

Any change made in this location with a shim of course moves the absorber with reapect to the chainwheel (the absorber will be moving closer to the chainwheel). To some extent this may not be a bad move. I would suggest it may take a few dry assembly/adjustment cycles to get it right. Go too far and there will be interference between the absorber and the drum.

TR7RV mentions "Not much lube there either". I don't know whether he means not to lube, or whether not much gets there.
My own view is that if ever there was a place to pack with grease, this is one. The action of the rubbers will help to re-grease the surfaces during use. I have heard the reports of greases/oils attacking rubbers, I suspect this is based on some rubbish put on the market 20+ years ago.

Best of luck!

Re: Clutch Center Orientation
TrophyGuy #792600 12/11/19 8:23 am
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Hi Koan58, I always grease the back side of vanes where they rub back plate. I've had quite a few cush hubs apart to change rubbers. I find oil has worked into 100% of them. Basically an oily gooey mess. I don't know how much lube this oil really does though. I find the new rubbers don't last more than 5 years that the longest before getting deteriorated into gooey mess. Tell tale sign is a loud click intermittently as you change power from pull to compression like cresting a twisty rise at 25-35 mph. Slight at first, then becomes startling. Also when going bad rubber goo leaks out from outer plate. This goo is hard to clean off.

My experience is when vanes & back plate wear it allows the cush hub to wobble. At the same time the ends of spider wears in cover plates. You can feel this wobble by grabbing hub & wiggling it very hard with clutch plates removed. New parts have only a trace of play. Seems it's only good for 25-30k miles at best. Of course by that time the slots for plain plate tangs are so worn/grooved the plates don't free & grip properly.

At the same time this wobble from spider/back plate wear effects clutch release no matter how perfectly you've smoothed tang grooves or what type friction plates you use. Wear here can also cause slipping as the plates can very slightly separate under hard power. Clutch hard parts is probably fastest wearing part on motor. Friction material wear is often not a fast wearing part. It's everything else. I've been tracking this for some time now. I'm finding a high quality synthetic oil tends to slow wear of clutch parts. You cannot go wrong with Mobil1 v-twin 20-50. Walmart has best price in USA. Gives very good release & doesn't promote slip. Very high zinc. In your heat you need a good oil like this. Real oil filter is a good thing also. For certain keeps oil much cleaner & substantially reduces sludge in oil. Also reduces clutch dust circulating in oil in our primary breathing motors.

On a side note some new center hubs with taper than go onto main shaft, the 4 small "oil holes" can have tiny sharp burrs. If you have burrs here it will grind the thrust washer very quickly, like in a few hundred miles. There are 3 types thrust washers. Original type, steel/bronze. This last well. Solid bronze, I find this lasted best. One that is more like brass, but passed off as solid bronze. These are the worst. I feel this is why some have great results with bronze, others find they wear quickly. Again the burred hubs are UK made on packaging. I got the good bronze ones from Rabers, but they closed down. Now I don't know where to get them.

Costs a some $$ to replace everything. About $700 or so with chain, tensioner, basket & all plates. I recommend 7 plate kit as they work well. In the end of the day you'll get a clutch that works perfectly though.

On a side note my first Triumph was 1970 TR6C. Best motorcycle I ever owned. Still kick myself for selling it. Put 30k miles on it with zero repairs. Just 1 chain & tires. Rigorously maintained by the book. Commuted every day to work rain or shine. Plus lots of cow trailing. I bet clutch was worn bad, but still worked ok for me then.
Don


1973 Tiger 750
Re: Clutch Center Orientation
TR7RVMan #792605 12/11/19 12:11 pm
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Yes, good point about un-noticed worn clutches. I never replaced the centre or the shock absorber rubbers in any of my T140s / T120Vs back in my youth, and I must have covered over 20000 on my favourite one (and none were new when I got them). I suppose there must have been odd clacking, rattling noises from the primary case but back then, I just thought "they all do that" and ignored them. Nowadays I;m much more fussy and want to know the reason for everything that isn't as right as it can possibly be.

The shock absorber rubbers most definitely do dissolve in oil, Koan. Mine were quite bad, with black goo oozing out of the front plate and several degrees of slop on the outer shock absorber before I took it apart. The rubbers were really dissolved around their edges, quite deep. I've replaced them with Tony Hayward 'rubbers' which are made of polypropylene (or is it polyethylene? - pink, squishy stuff anyway)


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Re: Clutch Center Orientation
Tigernuts #792609 12/11/19 2:09 pm
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When I rebuilt my T140 last year the rear plate was worn quite a bit from the spider.It was also a bit sloppy fit in the plate. I put in new rubbers and a 7 plate Aerco.Reused the worn clutch hub as is.. The clutch action is very nice with no unusal noise.Also use Valvoline VR1 oil that is not Jaso rated with no drag or slippage.......


79 T140D, 96 900M Ducati ....On a bike you can out run the demons..
Re: Clutch Center Orientation
Hillbilly bike #792646 12/11/19 10:06 pm
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Yeah, I reckon that just renewing the rubbers will sort things for a while (however long it takes before the new rubbers dissolve to the point where the spider can move easily to-and-fro when the system isn't under load, as in when the engine is idling and the gearbox is in neutral). Then, the wear on the back plate will start making that annoying noise again. That doesn't matter too much to me now that I understand what the cause of the noise is, though I'll still find it annoying when it happens next! I'm hoping that the poly-rubbers will hold up for a lot longer.

I put Castrol XL 20/50 in my TR7 because it is a pure 'dino' oil, but is rated very highly by Commando owners. I didn't think about whether it was JASO MA rated or nor - it just didn't occur to me. I just thought what's good enough for a Commando is good enough for my Triumph. It wasn't until I found that the clutch slipped a bit that I realised why. But, having said that, unless I really whack it open hard, it doesn't slip. The only time I notice it is if I make the mistake of pulling the clutch in and kicking it over to free the plates before trying to start from stone cold. It can take some time before kicking bites and the engine turns over (the moment it does, it starts, but I'm looking forward to dumping this oil and refilling with my usual JASO MA rated synthetic stuff)


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Re: Clutch Center Orientation
TrophyGuy #792730 12/12/19 7:41 pm
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Wow! Great experience tips from everyone. My not so bright idea of modifying the back plate and/or spider has gone out the window. There isn't enought room to get in a proper thrust washer or bushing to take axial reaction load off the spiders. Also the parts appear to be heat treat hardened, no fun to machine on. The design is what it is, satisfactory but not especially long lived, ironic for such a heavy mechanism. I'm going to smooth the scollops on my back plate so the spiders can run up and down ramps instead of bumping into shouldered grooves, the most expeditious solution short of replacing the shock absorber assembly.

Is there a source for the higher quality polypropylene rubbers and the backing plate without buying the entire cush drive?

Re: Clutch Center Orientation
TrophyGuy #792736 12/12/19 8:40 pm
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As I said, all parts are available in the UK. For example:

http://www.tms-motorcycles.co.uk/store/products/list.asp?cat_id=130&order_by=name

Maybe give Coventry Spares (John Healy, the moderator's company) or CBS (a site sponsor) a call?

Tony Hayward (for the rubbers):
28 Kelsterton Road, Connah's Quay, Deeside, Flintshire. CH5 4BJ
Telephone: (0044) 1244 830 776
Maybe Tigernuts has his email?

Re: Clutch Center Orientation
koan58 #792796 12/13/19 1:32 pm
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Sorry - Tony doesn't do email! But he is helpful (but likes to talk, so be prepared for a big phone bill or get the order placed quickly and have an excuse ready!). I have a pretty strong idea that US / Canadian retailers stock Hayward clutch parts. Steadfast Cycles? The Bonneville Shop? The Canadian one I can't remember the name of?!

I bought a new back plate for about £14 from TMS - the rest of my clutch centre was in good condition, so that and the Hayward rubbers (which were about the same I think) got me a better clutch than I started with for about £70 less than a complete new centre.


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Re: Clutch Center Orientation
TrophyGuy #792824 12/13/19 5:25 pm
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Originally Posted by TrophyGuy
Wow! Great experience tips from everyone. My not so bright idea of modifying the back plate and/or spider has gone out the window. There isn't enought room to get in a proper thrust washer or bushing to take axial reaction load off the spiders. Also the parts appear to be heat treat hardened, no fun to machine on. The design is what it is, satisfactory but not especially long lived, ironic for such a heavy mechanism. I'm going to smooth the scollops on my back plate so the spiders can run up and down ramps instead of bumping into shouldered grooves, the most expeditious solution short of replacing the shock absorber assembly.

Is there a source for the higher quality polypropylene rubbers and the backing plate without buying the entire cush drive?


britcycle has the cush drive rubbers;
http://www.britcycle.com/Products/571722etc.htm


1979 Triumph T140E
1973 Daytona T100R
Re: Clutch Center Orientation
Bob B #792838 12/13/19 8:07 pm
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Yes, that's the Canadian shop I was thinking of, and those are the 'rubbers'


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Re: Clutch Center Orientation
TrophyGuy #792843 12/13/19 8:55 pm
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Hi BobB, Thanks for posting the link. These have gotten good reviews. I've not personally used them yet though.

Regarding wear on my back plate the wear was .008" deep at end of wear marks on back plate. As you know they don't wear evenly with more wear at tips of vanes.

I don't know for sure how much wear was on the tips of vanes for sure as I failed to note the thickness when I replace failed rubbers long ago. However I pretty much feel my estimate of .025-.030" thinning of vanes is close. The play of the thrust washer was .038"+. I quit measuring after that. Rollers & races were perfect.

In operation the basket moves to back plate on the back side. Any wear on the spider & back plate the basket moves to left pulled by clutch springs. The moves chain line to left & at the same time will clutch is released by pulling lever the basket is not free to move left/right. Looking down oil fill hole in primary with motor running you can see indeed the basket is moving in/out with clutch released. This movement seems to make plates tend to contact each other to a degree. My hunch is this is part of the drag issues when you get excessive wear as I had. Prior at about half that wear the clutch still worked good. The thrust washer had about .020-.025" clearance then.

With the great wear I had I would have slight slippage with the same spring tension I had prior with no slippage. As I said new normal rubbers made no change one way or the other. The special rubbers just last longer. They can't cure a wear problem.

In my case the parts were just worn out. Their service life was reached & then some.

Even on low mileage bikes you see a decided wear pattern on back plate, but it's not deep.

I would certainly try to install the better rubbers & see what happens. I'd file any grooving off slots in cush hub & basket. I'd have to check my notes, but I think I had to widen my slots about .010-.020" to remove grooving. The outer rim of basket will groove also.... I didn't try to do anything with those. I'd have to check my notes but I got about 10000 more miles out of clutch, even though it didn't work perfectly like the all new parts do.

I wonder if Triumph hardened the slots on basket & hub if that would have cured the wear issues. Back in the day Triumph parts were not very costly. Perfect used parts could be easily found at dismantlers. A complete primary drive, sprockets, chain, clutch complete in perfect shape would go for about $15.00 in '73. What's that in today's $, $100 or less. Hundreds of near new wrecked Triumphs & Japanese bikes in stock. For some reason Triumph riders tended to be especially reckless. I certainly was. Not now!!
Don


1973 Tiger 750
Re: Clutch Center Orientation
TrophyGuy #792866 12/14/19 1:14 am
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In the soon to be Un united Kingdom , the critical parts for the cush drive are difficult to get from one place, spider and wearing inner end plate, once you have sourced rubbers , spider and end plate , a whole new hub centre makes a lot of sense.
Its strange why folk will spends 100s on getting the crank right to within a baw hair, and be happy with a clutch with wizards sleeve tolerances

Last edited by gavin eisler; 12/14/19 1:23 am.

71 Devimead, John Hill, John Holmes A65 750
56 Norbsa 68 Longstroke A65
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Re: Clutch Center Orientation
gavin eisler #792868 12/14/19 1:37 am
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Originally Posted by gavin eisler
...within a baw hair...

While living in Brum and Preston in 2000, I worked with a fellow from Lockerbie.
Accompanied him on a weekend visit to his ma who was working as a shepherd in the highlands.
Last time I heard that phrase. lol.


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1970 T120R
1970 Commando
Re: Clutch Center Orientation
gavin eisler #792901 12/14/19 2:42 pm
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Originally Posted by gavin eisler
... with wizards sleeve tolerances

And there's another new one to me. This and "baw hair' both seem to reference female genitalia if I'm not wrong.

Last edited by Nick H; 12/14/19 2:44 pm.

1966 BSA Lightning
(2) 1967 Triumph "Choppa"s
1974 Indian ME125
Re: Clutch Center Orientation
Nick H #792906 12/14/19 3:43 pm
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Originally Posted by Nick H
Originally Posted by gavin eisler
... with wizards sleeve tolerances

And there's another new one to me. This and "baw hair' both seem to reference female genitalia if I'm not wrong.


Female baw hair is not something I’d go looking for.

I’ve never been to Bangkok though.


Amateur Loctite enthusiast.
Re: Clutch Center Orientation
TrophyGuy #792911 12/14/19 4:29 pm
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ba' hair (pronounced baw hair)
A ba' hair is a rather indelicate term for a very small, almost imperceptible distance; a whisker.
That just missed ma heid by a ba' hair!.
It literally means a male pubic hair.


1968 T120R
1972 T120RV
Any advice given is without a warranty expressed or implied.
Re: Clutch Center Orientation
TrophyGuy #792913 12/14/19 4:45 pm
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And the English English equivalent is a "gnats cock".

Re: Clutch Center Orientation
TrophyGuy #792964 12/15/19 2:21 am
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I'm more familiar with the "CH"


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(2) 1967 Triumph "Choppa"s
1974 Indian ME125

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