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My 85 1200 LTD (8500 miles) really clunks when I shift gears What is the best oil to use that would help shifting? I know a lot of people recommend Delo 400 for the type of oil, but will this help with the "clunking" when shifting?

EDIT: Right now I have Honda 20/50 in it.
 

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first of all I would change you clutch fluid or since your at it do a tripple hydro flush ! Then I would switch to full synthetic Like Amsoil /golden spectro there are less expensive synthic oils oils out there but I like Amsoil as I have about 5,000 miles on since I switched & Still smooth ! As I f you didn`t want to do that Use your normal oil & Then go with BG extreme engine consintrate I haven`t used this in along time so it may be called something else but just about all honda dealers should have it ! Anyway some else may also have a differant option for you !
 

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Most likely not. The 'Wing will 'clunk' going into first gear when first started after sitting overnight or in cold weather. Technique in shifting will help quite a bit in making quiet shifts. Shifting around 2500rpm will reduce noise compared to using higher rpm shift points. Slightly pre-loading the shifter just before making an up shift will help too.
 

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Ya, I think the cold 1st-shift thing has to do with the clutch plates being stuck together from non-use... and the other thing exavid is talking about, I really had to focus on that for nearly a whole season, before I got consistently proficient at it, but it really works. Done right, your shifts can be a smooth "snick" instead of that dread Harley "clunk". Can't say if any certain oil(s) have much to do with it...

There are some oils that will quiet the gear whine more than others, most will help from a fresh oil change, but a few will last longer, many of those are synthetics. Some members have stated that they use the "whine" signal as a cue to change their oil. :waving:
 

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I shift gears more by speed than RPM (at least when I look at something it's the speedometer). I shift to second around 8MPH, 3rd around 20-25MPH 4th around 35-40MPH and OD around 45-50. Once in OD, it will hang there from 35 MPH on up, rarely do I shift down unless I need a quick giddy up and go or on a hill. However I do think technique has some to do with it sometimes....... Like when I miss a gear......

I never thought about the clutch oil.... Would that help?
 

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One thing about clunking: These bikes are just plain quiet compared to so manyothers there will always be noise there. I use synthetics in the car, and used to in the 'wing. Now I have converted to the 15/40 side (except for mid winter when I run 10/30 for 3 months). Shifting has been very consistent throughout. Did the clunk change? Maybe a little, but not enough to matter.
When the 'wings first came out they had a 'u' pipe exhaust that was so quiet owners brought them to the shop to complain of valve train noise. That was one reason Honda went to the dual type exhaust-- valve noise was very normal, people just were not used to hearing it.
As for the clutch fluid- always good to flush it just like the brakes. One small bottle of brake fluid for $4 can do all 3 very easily. It is hydrostatic so it absorbs water. Good to change it. It can affect full clutch disengagement.
Just play with shift timing a bit ( throttle position, how long between gears, what speed/engine rpm, etc). Sometimes you clunk more, sometimes you clunk less.
Bottom line- use good oil of your choice, no extra additives, try different gear changing techniques.
Oh- and have fun riding!
 

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jobe05 wrote:
I shift gears more by speed than RPM (at least when I look at something it's the speedometer). I shift to second around 8MPH, 3rd around 20-25MPH 4th around 35-40MPH and OD around 45-50. Once in OD, it will hang there from 35 MPH on up, rarely do I shift down unless I need a quick giddy up and go or on a hill. However I do think technique has some to do with it sometimes....... Like when I miss a gear......

I never thought about the clutch oil.... Would that help?
My thoght is your lugging the motor shifting at those speeds. I shift at between 2500-3000 rpms. That's where it shifts best. As far as oil goes, I've tried Rotella T, Delo 400, and Delvac 1300 in the 15/40 wt ranges. My bike shifts the best with the Delvac. Right now I'm running ST 20/50 for the summer and it shifts pretty good also.,,
 

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Thanks rpeters.

I haven't looked it up yet but I would use DOT 4 Brake fluid for the Clutch?

I just went for a short ride and paid close attention to shifting, and I had to look twice to make sure I went into 3rd, didn't hear anything..... Strange.....

By the way, the clunking is in every gear, not just first, so I suppose most of it probably is user error, and the rest just the quietness of the bike itself, something Im not use to. For days there has always been this weird rattle behind me, I would try to look to see if I could see anything but never could. Come to find out it was the spare face shield rattling in the trunk.......
 

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Yes on the DOT 4. That is specified, at least in the later years and a good upgrade (higher wet boiling point) for the older. It fully mixes with the DOT 3 so they can mix, but do NOT use DOT 5. It is silicone based and will not be compatible.

Funny about the face shield. I keep some old socks in the trunk for small hard items (like helmet holder extensions) to keep them quiet.
 
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