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Shift lever locking up (intermittently)

Discussion in 'Norton Motorcycles (Modern)' started by Britfan60, Jun 7, 2018.

  1. Britfan60

    Britfan60 VIP MEMBER

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2014
    Started over a month ago. The bike was in 1st gear, and slightly pulling forward, shifting getting notchier, gear lever locking up attempting to shift into 4th or 5th. Bled the clutch. Smooth as silk. Another 60 miles or so, again. Bled the clutch, smooth as silk. Repeat. About 5 bleeds so far. Any suggestions? I have to prime the clutch with light taps of the lever before shifting successfully.
     
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  2. TonyA

    TonyA VIP MEMBER

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2015
    Is there a small leak ? Is the fluid level changing ? If not , why not try and adjust the clutch lever adjustment screw in a bit , say 1/4 to 1/2 turn. It could be you have some bedding in that has taken place and you need a small adjustment. As an experiment go to lever setting #1 and see if it improves. If it does , you need an adjustment .
     
    Britfan60 likes this.
  3. BritTwit

    BritTwit

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2009
    Curtis,

    If the bike is dragging in first gear with the clutch pulled in, then the clutch is not fully disengaging.
    Means the clutch pushrod is not being fully extended by the slave cylinder.
    Do you find air bubbles in the fluid when you bled the system?
    Is the fluid coming out clear, or dark?
    If the fluid is dark it may be contaminated.
    When contaminated fluid heats up the effect is like air in the line, fluid compresses preventing proper operation.
    You could try flushing the entire clutch line and replacing with new fluid.
     
  4. StuartSF2015

    StuartSF2015 VIP MEMBER

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2015
    Those symptoms have fluid leak written all over them. Inspect lever, reservoir and lines with paper roll to spot and soak up any fluid and then check the slave cylinder. If that has a leak, it will drip onto the chain and not leave a telltale.
    Beware loose washers and the ball bearing behind the front sprocket cover if removing it to check the slave cylinder.
    Happy fettling.
     
  5. Britfan60

    Britfan60 VIP MEMBER

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2014
    Fred. Each time, first squeeze, a bubble or two. Then solid. The fluid has a very slight purplish tint to it, but not very dark. Highly translucent. Havent noticed a change in fluid level. I have to check the capacity of fluid, but I've probably gone through a good 4 oz. so far. It seems to improve a bit with the lever on position 4 as far as the slight pull in first gear. I also made sure the connection to the slave cylinder was snugged up as well as to the reservoir. It hasn't done that since the first time, but the locking up going to the larger gears happens 1-3 time in 60 miles or so. Air is getting in but I'll try to move the plunger out a bit. I changed the lever myself from the broken one and fiddled with the plunger, but did over 1000 miles with no problem. Sucks not having a dealer around however the local Kawasaki dealer will help wherever he can. As he put it, its a motorcycle.
     
  6. Britfan60

    Britfan60 VIP MEMBER

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2014
    Did another bleed, more substantial, almost 2oz. A nd the fluid is now almost clear. I dumped some into my kitchen sink and it was dirty. Also turned the clutch lever plunger set screw a whole turn. Didnt get much chance to check it. Twice around the block. Still a little notchy. I think I'm going to have problems. Never had a hydraulic clutch before so this is all new to me. Cab I check the push rod movement if I undo the three screws and pull it out? Reluctant to screw with something I've never screwed with before.
     
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2018
  7. Kiwi961

    Kiwi961

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2016
    I had a similar issue when I first rode my bike home - the three bolts on the side where the clutch hose enters the case by the sprocket cover were loose so the rod wasn’t being pushed right in - have you checked those?
     
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  8. Britfan60

    Britfan60 VIP MEMBER

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2014
    Only by appearence did they seem tight. No gaps. I'll put a hex key on them and check to see if they are loose. Thanks. Hope its as easy as that.
     
  9. BritTwit

    BritTwit

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2009
    Does the clutch still drag when you pull in the lever and put the bike in first gear?

    If you’re always finding an air bubble or two when you bleed from the slave cylinder nipple, then it sounds like there is a leak somewhere in the slave cylinder itself. Could be a worn seal, but that’s weird cause I have never had one of those go bad on any of my Ducks. If air is getting in then some fluid has to be getting out. Have you noticed any fluid on the engine cover below the slave?

    If you want to remove the slave to check the pushrod you can undo the three screws and pull the slave off. Be careful when you pull the slave out - make sure the support plate and pushrod ball bearing don’t drop out of the slave. The whole assembly is full of grease to keep everything in place when you reassemble it.

    I would look for evidence of fluid inside.

    You know you can waste a lot of time screwing with this or just take the bike to the Kawasaki shop and have then look at it. They probably have a speed breeder and can do a much better job and get all the bubbles out. You can test the bike then if the problem returns again you can be pretty sure it’s a problem with the slave.
     

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