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Clutch drag #642579
03/02/16 4:51 pm
03/02/16 4:51 pm
Joined: May 2013
Posts: 13
Smithfield, VA USA
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PcPat Offline OP
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Smithfield, VA USA
I've had my 72 650 Lightning running for it's 2nd season now, but I have an issue that bothers me. When cold or just warmed up the bike runs great; however, when the bike is fully warmed up the clutch seems to drag when fully pulled in. Makes it slightly hard to hold back when stopped at a light, sometimes I even have to drop it into neutral.
I have tried to adjust it at the hand control and at the adjuster on the engine. Tweek it just a little and it slips when cold, when adjusted back and it drags when pulled in and warm.
The clutch plates look good, they were in tolerance when checked after it was rebuilt 2 seasons ago (I have had the problem ever since rebuilding). They are the original plates from when the bike was abandoned back in 1976.
I have tried several different fluids just in case that was the issue, but still have the problem. Since it is still a little too cold to ride, I figured this would be a good time to check into the issue.
Any Thoughts?

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Re: Clutch drag [Re: PcPat] #642582
03/02/16 5:07 pm
03/02/16 5:07 pm
Joined: Dec 2004
Posts: 9,044
Scotland
kommando Online content
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kommando  Online Content
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Scotland
Have you checked the clutch outer plate is lifting evenly, take the primary cover off and just start to get it to lift whilst kicking it over in neutral, as it spins you can see uneven lifting easier, if it is starting to lift on one side adjust the springs until its lift is even. It can take some time to get it right.

Re: Clutch drag [Re: kommando] #642603
03/02/16 6:41 pm
03/02/16 6:41 pm
Joined: Oct 2008
Posts: 1,658
Canada
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LarryLebel Offline
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Canada
Check for notching to the clutch basket channels. Maybe a plate or 2 is hanging up. However I can say the clutch on my B44 works OK despite notching that I need to address.

Re: Clutch drag [Re: PcPat] #642621
03/02/16 9:15 pm
03/02/16 9:15 pm
Joined: May 2013
Posts: 13
Smithfield, VA USA
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PcPat Offline OP
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Thanks, I'll check it out this weekend.

Re: Clutch drag [Re: PcPat] #642625
03/02/16 10:26 pm
03/02/16 10:26 pm
Joined: Aug 2001
Posts: 3,504
argyll. scotland, uk
gavin eisler Online content
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gavin eisler  Online Content
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argyll. scotland, uk
The preceding checks are sound , if that disnae work then the clutch centre hub is worn. Replace same. At that age the rubbers are done, and the hub itself wears internally, replace the whole centre lump. I have had exactly the same symptoms.This was the cure.

Last edited by gavin eisler; 03/02/16 10:29 pm.

71 Devimead A65 750
56 Norbsa 68 Longstroke A65
Cagiva Raptor 650
MZ TS 250
The poster formerly known as Pod
Re: Clutch drag [Re: PcPat] #642696
03/03/16 1:33 pm
03/03/16 1:33 pm
Joined: Apr 2011
Posts: 923
Nor. California
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Deadstiffcatt Offline
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Nor. California
Also check the routing and condition of the clutch cable itself.
1. Poor routing of the cable can cause binding and an improper action at the clutch; it needs the swoops and turns to be as smooth as possible.
2. An old or worn cable can have crap inside the housing itself that can also affect performance of the cable, old lubricant in it can thicken when cold and then thin up when routed near a hot part of the engine. Worth noting is that the outer coils of the cable housing (that are covered with the black vinyl) do have a little bit of spring over the entire length, an old cable housing will have "set" and lost a little of this spring which can also have an effect on how the clutch cable itself works.

Re: Clutch drag [Re: Deadstiffcatt] #642713
03/03/16 2:46 pm
03/03/16 2:46 pm
Joined: Aug 2001
Posts: 333
Texas Gulf Coast
Curmudgeon Offline
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I've seen this problem before. Turned out that the rubber buffers inside the clutch center were totally worn out.
This is one of the most neglected things during a rebuild.


reliccycles.com
Re: Clutch drag [Re: Curmudgeon] #642719
03/03/16 2:59 pm
03/03/16 2:59 pm
Joined: Feb 2014
Posts: 381
Cork Ireland
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chaterlea25 Online content
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Cork Ireland
Hi,
Quote:
Makes it slightly hard to hold back when stopped at a light, sometimes I even have to drop it into neutral.


British bikes in general do not take kindly to sitting at traffic lights or junctions with the clutch pulled in eek
They usually do not have a "proper" thrust bearing in the lifting mechanism

Best practice is to go to neutral as you roll to a stop
+1 on all the other advice

HTH
John

Re: Clutch drag [Re: chaterlea25] #642720
03/03/16 3:02 pm
03/03/16 3:02 pm
Joined: Jul 2001
Posts: 12,315
Central Virginia
Lannis Online content

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Lannis  Online Content

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Posts: 12,315
Central Virginia
Originally Posted By chaterlea25


British bikes in general do not take kindly to sitting at traffic lights or junctions with the clutch pulled in eek
They usually do not have a "proper" thrust bearing in the lifting mechanism

Best practice is to go to neutral as you roll to a stop
+1 on all the other advice

HTH
John


Yes, +1 to all the other advice AND to slip an SRM alloy pressure plate with a proper thrust bearing into your clutch too. Sometimes the old stamped steel plate gets a bit warped, along with the "bushing"-style thrust bearing, and the upgrade plate and actual bearing makes all the difference.

Lannis


We're approaching the tipping point ... where those who vote for a living will outnumber those who work for a living .....
Re: Clutch drag [Re: PcPat] #642787
03/04/16 2:35 am
03/04/16 2:35 am
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 3,569
Sydney Australia
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BSA_WM20 Online content
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The steel clutch plates were stamped out with no regard to the grain orientation.
Thus on some the the center lifting hole and two spring holes are all aligned with the grain .
On these the plate will flex when lifted no matter what you do.
I had one like that many years ago and when it still flexed after fitting a top hat lifter with radial roller bearing so I took it to work & etched it to reveal the gain.
I did a dozen or more and noticed there was no common pattern which explaine hy some wee a doddle to adjust while oters always gave me grief.
The solution is the alloy pressure plate.
Lots of companies do them
worth every cent.


Bike Beesa
Trevor
Re: Clutch drag [Re: PcPat] #642845
03/04/16 1:49 pm
03/04/16 1:49 pm
Joined: May 2013
Posts: 13
Smithfield, VA USA
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PcPat Offline OP
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Thanks for the advice, I have placed some rubber buffers on order, will move to the Alloy pressure plate and thrust bearing if that doesn't resolve it. As for the clutch cable, it's new and it took me a while to get it routed just right without any binding.

The buffers and pressure plate make a lot of sense since they they would be most affected by heat.

Thanks, I'll post what happens when the parts come in

Re: Clutch drag [Re: PcPat] #642903
03/04/16 9:49 pm
03/04/16 9:49 pm
Joined: Apr 2005
Posts: 59
Tampa FL USA
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Sam Offline
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Tampa FL USA
Gavin, are you saying replace the center hub, Spyder and rubber cushions or just replace the rubber cushions?

Re: Clutch drag [Re: PcPat] #642912
03/05/16 12:14 am
03/05/16 12:14 am
Joined: Aug 2001
Posts: 4,252
Owego, NY, USA
Mark Z Offline
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Mark Z  Offline
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Posts: 4,252
Owego, NY, USA
In addition to all the things that might be "not right", one thing that's more or less "normal" is that the commonly used cork friction discs swell when warm. I say "more or less" because I recall that the original BSA discs (which probably contained asbestos and were therefore abandoned in the aftermarket) didn't seem to swell, or at least not to the same degree.

Everything having to do with the clutch on my A65 is up to snuff, cush rubbers, cable, linkage, etc. The discs are fresh, the pressure plate lifts evenly, and I run ATF in the primary. Still I find that I have to adjust the pressure plate clearance when the engine is warm, back off the adjuster screw no more than 1/4 turn from seated, and then bring the control lever adjustment up to about 1/4 inch free play.

But on a cool morning, before starting, I find that there is NO play in the cable. If it's cold enough, it may even slip when kickstarting, or at least in third gear down the road until it warms up a bit.

So what I do is simply back off the clutch lever adjuster, start up, head off down the road, and then bring the adjuster back up after a couple of miles. Maybe this isn't right, shouldn't be, but it's a minor inconvenience, and the clutch suffers no other symptoms, no sticking, no slipping, no grabbing.

FWIW, I believe that the Surflex discs don't swell to the same degree as the cork discs, but I have only a cursory personal experience with those (on someone else's bike).


Mark Z

'65(lower)/'66(upper, wheels, front end, controls)/'67(seat, exhaust, fuel tank, headlamp)/'70(frame) A65 Bitsa.
Re: Clutch drag [Re: PcPat] #642923
03/05/16 5:35 am
03/05/16 5:35 am
Joined: Aug 2001
Posts: 3,504
argyll. scotland, uk
gavin eisler Online content
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argyll. scotland, uk
"Gavin, are you saying replace the center hub, Spyder and rubber cushions or just replace the rubber cushions?"

Yes, replace the steel and the rubber parts, both wear. If you strip the hub completely for access to the rubbers you will also find wear on the inside faces of the hub where the spider rubs , especially bad if the rubbers have gone soft.


71 Devimead A65 750
56 Norbsa 68 Longstroke A65
Cagiva Raptor 650
MZ TS 250
The poster formerly known as Pod
Re: Clutch drag [Re: PcPat] #642942
03/05/16 9:47 am
03/05/16 9:47 am
Joined: Apr 2005
Posts: 59
Tampa FL USA
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Sam Offline
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Tampa FL USA
Thanks for the information

Re: Clutch drag [Re: Sam] #643956
03/12/16 1:15 pm
03/12/16 1:15 pm
Joined: May 2013
Posts: 13
Smithfield, VA USA
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PcPat Offline OP
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Smithfield, VA USA
Just as an FYI, I opened the primary and so far have found one of my springs is slightly shorter than the other two and 3 of the 6 steel plates have a slight warp in them when placed on a piece of glass. I have a new set of springs already and figure I would just replace all the plates. I haven't gone after the crush drive rubbers yet, but will do that if the springs and plates don't resolve the issue.

Re: Clutch drag [Re: PcPat] #650440
04/27/16 9:30 pm
04/27/16 9:30 pm
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Posts: 13
Smithfield, VA USA
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PcPat Offline OP
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Sorry for the long time between posts, weather has been pretty cold for a short while here in NY, now that we have some nicer days, I was able to take the bike out. I changed the clutch plates, springs, thrust washer pressure plate and also the rubber cushions. looks like the problem with the clutch drag when warm is gone.
I have another issue with the engine performance, but I will place that in another post.
Thanks for all the help!


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