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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi guys,

Need some feedback... Working on a friends 1999 1500 and when I picked it up I noticed a very late engagement of the clutch - that is to say, the lever is almost all the way out before the clutch engages...

Didn't notice and slipping or chatter, just a very late engagement... I'm thinking I might try to bleed the clutch and see if that helps... Other things I am thinking - maybe the actuator rod is worn in the slave unit, or perhaps the clutch itself???

The clutch was not on my list of to-do's for my friend on this bike, but it bother's me that the engagement is so late...

Any thoughts or ideas ideas??? Bike has just over 50K on the clock but maintenance generally has been lacking...

Les
 

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It aint rocket science
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Could have cheap aftermarket levers also.

You know what they say about good guys finishing last.

If he ain't complaining about it leave it be. You try to be a good guy and do this and that for him and the clutch goes next week.

It will then be EVER SINCE YOU WORKED ON IT it doesn't work. What are you going to do then fix it out of your pocket.:?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I'll look at the bushing Dennis - thanks... Levers are OEM so no issue there... My friends are not the type to hold me responsible for a clutch going out - they are really nice people and asked me to do some maintenance because they are not mechanically inclined... Actually, I'm working on "her bike" now, his bike will be later in the week...

I owned a 1993 Aspy for 20 years so I know how the clutch should feel, and something isn't right on this one... Just looking for possible fixes guys short of replacing the clutch which I will not do as I don't have the proper tools for that job...
 

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Junior Grue
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Your 1100 had a cable that you could adjust to change the lever engagement point the 1500 does not.

You can try to fix what ain't broke, many have tried, few if any have succeeded.
 

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It aint rocket science
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A worn bushing or pushrod would move the engagement point closer to grip.
 

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Pwhoever
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I would take it further than just bleeding and checking. I would suggest flushing as well. If the clutch(brake) fluid has not been changed in over 2 years, I would suspect that. New clutch fluid may be needed. The clutch and front/rear brake fluid needs to be changed out a minimum of every 2 years. Even though it is supposedly sealed, it will still get old and contaminated and it's usefulness is diminished. And depending on how long its been since the last fluid change, you may need to rebuild the slave unit as is may have quite a bunch of contamination in it.
 

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Still Learning
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Or the slave cyl is gummed up from lack of proper yearly flushings. Once gummed it will take removal and cleaning the slave cyl along with the master cyl. I had to do it on mine when I received it as it sat unused and no maintenance for over 3 years in a hot shed while my friend was going through cancer treatments.
Let us know what you find with it Les.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
OK Stu and others - thanks for all the tips... I didn't work on it today as the kids were over for a BBQ but I'll start again on it tomorrow... Have to pull the rear wheel tomorrow and replace a badly scored rear rotor... Then I'll replace the rear pads and bleed the systems including clutch...

I'll report back on what I find... I've never worked on a slave cylinder before - this could be a new experience for me - good thing I kept my 1500 shop manual ;)

Les
 

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Junior Grue
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It looks like the consensus is to bleed, bleed and bleed again then replace parts until you get the engagement point as far from the grip as you can.:?
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Bleed the clutch today (many times) and it's still the same... Also disassembled clutch lever and checked and lubed master cylinder plunger and associated components - no change...

Pulling slave unit tomorrow morning to see what I can see - hopefully it will be an epiphany tomorrow and I'll find out what's wrong... I may try to bleed the clutch assembly at the master cylinder banjo bolt tomorrow as I have a little help coming over in the morning and see if that makes any difference... The master cylinder is quite a bit higher than the clutch at that point so that would be a good spot for an air bubble...

Les
 

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Junior Grue
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If you have little movement of the lever and push rod before you feel resistance in the lever and just a tiny bit of pull on the lever from that point until the clutch disengages it's working as designed.

Just to recap, your complaint is that the engagement point is to far from the grip right?

Does your friend have small hands and wants the engagement point closer to the grip or is this just you chasing ghosts?
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
In the continuing saga of the late engaging clutch - today I pulled the slave cylinder and inspected it and cleaned it... There was a little junk in there but not bad at all... Refilled and bled the master cylinder again and same thing - still late engagement...

Tried bleeding the clutch at the banjo fitting on the master cylinder thinking there might be an air bubble trapped high - no dice - same issue...

Let me reiterate here that I owned a 1500 (my 93 Aspy) for over 20 years and my clutch was never this low... I am stumped and have told my friend that to the best of my knowledge, either a new clutch is needed or there is something going on I am not aware of... I have officially "punted" on this issue... It's not in my make-up to give up on a problem but this one truly has me baffled and I have run out of ideas to try...

Ken - yes, it is an issue of late engagement of the clutch - the clutch lever is almost all the way released before the clutch engages... My friends hands are not that small and I don't believe I am chasing ghosts... I owned and operated my 1500 for over 20 years, and did all my own wrenching on it and as mentioned earlier, this clutch action is not normal for a 1500, and in fact, this was confirmed by my buddy today as he test rode the bike too and confirmed the late engagement of the clutch... He was also a 1500 owner (actually he had 2) for many years...

At this point the only guess I have left is clutch replacement - I cannot find anything else wrong with this clutch assembly...

Les
 

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It aint rocket science
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Needing a clutch at 50k is improbable, any chance the miles are not correct.

With the cheap Chinese parts nowadays anything is possible with regard to a previous repair or replacement of a component with it being out of whack from OEM. Does it look like anyone has been into the bike before.

Throw some Delo oil in it and see what happens.
 

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Still Learning
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Les
50,000 is low miles for a clutch on the 1500s unless totally abused and possibly no oil changes for 15,000 miles to clog the pickup screens and the clutch not bathed in proper amount of oil. Has the bike had a long period of non use? Contaminated oil?
You said "generally lack of maintenance "
What oil has been used and what were the change mileage at?
Maybe a good 1 qt of MMO crankcase flush in a 200 mile ride to get it good and hot then change the oil and filter while hot to flush the grime and sludge.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Well, that's a good idea Stu... Yeah, both these bikes (the other comes in today) are from my very good riding friends in the MC club... They are great people and we really enjoy their company both on and off the bikes but alas, neither are technically inclined and unfortunately, they have little time or motivation for maintenance, so I try to help where I can...

I agree - 50K is very low mileage for needing a clutch and one would really have to work at destroying it for that to happen... The particular bike in question with the clutch issue goes back to the owner today and another one comes in for service so I doubt that I will be continuing with the clutch issue further unless it becomes drastically worse...

Thanks for all the replies and suggestions - wish I could have solved the problem - I would have felt better about it if I had...

Les
 
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