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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
So, some years ago someone knocked over my glee-strom in a parking lot, onto the left side. The hand guards took the brunt of most of the fall, but my clutch lever has been a little wobbly since then, with vertical play that I just kind of lived with. I figured it was either the lever being a little bent, or the housing (surrounding two holes) being a little stretched.

So today, I figured I'd had enough of that. I removed the left hand guard, removed the clutch lever, and put in a new lever. It still had vertical play. I took that out, and used a pair of pliers to true up the bolt holes that line up for the clutch lever, and reassembled it. That did the trick, the lever no longer had play.

I reassembled my hand guard and took it for a test ride around the block. Immediately, I noticed the lever pull seemed tighter (harder to pull than before), and the bite point to engage a gear was way, way late. I didn't remember changing the clutch cable tightness, but maybe something about just swapping in a new lever had done it.

I went home to adjust the clutch cable, and downshifted to first gear as I rode up my driveway... And... Ka-chunk! My gear shift foot lever just came free!

Well now there was no changing gears at all. I had to pull in the clutch to power walk the bike around, and then leave it in first gear in my garage.

I'm pretty sure these two pieces are supposed to be attached. Did I shear off a bolt somehow? I don't see how they're supposed to join.
 

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Discussion Starter #2

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Part is broken. Loosen the jam nut (34) on that end of the shift rod and the piece in your hand will rotate right off. Remove the bolt (36) at the bottom of the other half.. Fully remove the bolt as it rides in a channel on the spline, and that part will slide right off. Search on Ebay for a cheap used replacement or purchase new (27) from a Dealer.. Replacement is easy as pie, repair of the broken part not easily done....
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Yeah, a forum search found this which sounds/looks exactly like what happened to me:

https://www.stromtrooper.com/dl650-dl650a-2004-2011/73110-gear-shift-linkage-sheared-off-while-riding.html

Now, after I fix this, I guess I need to adjust my clutch cable for the bite point weirdness? Seems suspicious that the same time as that, my shift link arm snaps, too.

It's not like did a super hard shift, either, I wouldn't say, though it did refuse to shift down and stayed in neutral despite several taps before just coming off (while downshifting into first, or else I'd have had to walk the bike up my driveway).
 

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Not saying its what caused this, but if it has been many years on the bike, now might be a good time to lube or install a new clutch cable if your clutch has a weird bite point/feel...
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Not saying its what caused this, but if it has been many years on the bike, now might be a good time to lube or install a new clutch cable if your clutch has a weird bite point/feel...
It didn't before I changed the lever, I figure I must have accidentally adjusted it somehow in tugging on it to put in the new lever.

Any good aftermarket clutch cables for this bike? I put in a motion pro one on my Vulcan 750 years ago, but this bike (a 2012 DL650) is still on its original cable. It's been lubed though, and only at around 35,000 miles (I haven't ridden as much in the past 2-3 years but hope to start riding more again).
 

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It didn't before I changed the lever, I figure I must have accidentally adjusted it somehow in tugging on it to put in the new lever.

Any good aftermarket clutch cables for this bike? I put in a motion pro one on my Vulcan 750 years ago, but this bike (a 2012 DL650) is still on its original cable. It's been lubed though, and only at around 35,000 miles (I haven't ridden as much in the past 2-3 years but hope to start riding more again).
If it still moves freely, isn't kinked or frayed anywhere, and has been lubed periodically, it's probably fine.. Many people just don't pay any attention to them at all until they fail...
 

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On stuff like this, that could leave you broke down, I would get the parts from Suzuki.

There are 2 adjustments on a cable clutch. One is done at the motor to set the free-play for the clutch push rod and should be done first. The second is to get the free play correct on the cable. I have no explanation for the timing, except crap like that happens to me also.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
On stuff like this, that could leave you broke down, I would get the parts from Suzuki.

There are 2 adjustments on a cable clutch. One is done at the motor to set the free-play for the clutch push rod and should be done first. The second is to get the free play correct on the cable. I have no explanation for the timing, except crap like that happens to me also.
Yeah, I have only ever adjusted the free play at the top of the cable near where it attaches to the lever, and I don't think I've adjusted it on the v-strom except maybe a bit the first time I got it to where I like it.

Hopefully this part replacement is simple, I just wish I wasnt losing riding time just when the weather finally got nice! I was about to change my oil, too!
 

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I reassembled my hand guard and took it for a test ride around the block. Immediately, I noticed the lever pull seemed tighter (harder to pull than before), and the bite point to engage a gear was way, way late. I didn't remember changing the clutch cable tightness, but maybe something about just swapping in a new lever had done it.

I went home to adjust the clutch cable, and downshifted to first gear as I rode up my driveway... And... Ka-chunk! My gear shift foot lever just came free!
I have never been able to replace a clutch lever without first winding in the adjuster to lengthen the cable free play. Could you have wound the adjuster in, and then not wound it back out to the correct lever free play? Did you check lever free play after installing the new lever?
The dragging clutch might have caused you to put far more force than usual on the gear shift lever. It is a very unusual part to break.
 

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It do happen, I broke one on my R65LS BMW. It's just a bother rather than major problem.
You can still change oil, just let it drain for a longer period being cold and all.
i used to let mine drain overnight.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Strange. I got that part yesterday, and went out to install it today - part #27, "gear shift link". As shown in the diagram

https://www.suzukipartshouse.com/oemparts/a/suz/505a15b6f8700203b4ed1c0e/gear-shifting

it has a socket for threading in the "gear shift rod" (part #29), along with two nuts to secure the proper distance of the rod (whatever that is...) between the two links.

BUT, I found that the part that was on my 2012 bike seemed to be all one piece. the gear shift rod doesn't come free from the sheared off link head on #27.

I guess it's possible it's super-seized or something, but I can't even see a join line, even though I can see the thread going into the link head. Very strange. But after 90 minutes of trying to separate it, I gave up and just ordered part #29, plus the two nuts just in case, and will have to wait yet another week to try to repair my bike.

Arrrgh!
 

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It will come free. Under the rubber boot (#28) that you are holding between thumb and finger is lock nut #34.
You need to remove the rubber boot and loosen the lock nut before you can wind the broken part off of gear shift rod #29. That gear shift rod has a left hand thread at one end and a right hand thread at the other.
You may have been attempting to release the lock nut by turning it in the wrong direction. Look closely at the direction of the thread.

Remember, turning the gear shift rod #29 by its center head raises and lowers the gear shift tip, so one of those threads has to be a left hand thread.

You may even find it easier to remove the shifter #30 from the bike and get it up on the bench where you can clearly see how it works. Lock nuts #34 and #37 are different - one will have a left hand thread. They are not interchangeable.

Then wind the new part back on to the gear shift rod to approximately the same as the old part before engaging the shifter arm on to the gearbox splined shaft. Remember at what angle the original shifter arm sat on the gearbox shaft and put the new one in the same place.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
It will come free. Under the rubber boot (#28) that you are holding between thumb and finger is lock nut #34.
You need to remove the rubber boot and loosen the lock nut before you can wind the broken part off of gear shift rod #29. That gear shift rod has a left hand thread at one end and a right hand thread at the other.
You may have been attempting to release the lock nut by turning it in the wrong direction. Look closely at the direction of the thread.

Remember, turning the gear shift rod #29 by its center head raises and lowers the gear shift tip, so one of those threads has to be a left hand thread.

You may even find it easier to remove the shifter #30 from the bike and get it up on the bench where you can clearly see how it works. Lock nuts #34 and #37 are different - one will have a left hand thread. They are not interchangeable.

Then wind the new part back on to the gear shift rod to approximately the same as the old part before engaging the shifter arm on to the gearbox splined shaft. Remember at what angle the original shifter arm sat on the gearbox shaft and put the new one in the same place.
Wow, thanks for the advice and encouragement, my son and I gave this another try this evening and he got the nut free of the rod!

We installed the shifter in the same position as the old one (using the level line marker, plus it just "looks right") and tightened the nuts on the rod, and then I adjusted my clutch cable slack a bit, and gave it a test ride.

#1 - The clutch cable is still a little bit too slack. OK, I know what to do about that.

#2 - I can drop from neutral to first gear, get moving, and then upshift... Back to neutral. With a hard "click" and a stop. I cannot shift into any gear above Neutral and first.

What. The. Heck. Now?!
 

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That doesn't sound good.

Your troubles began with working on the clutch. From what you say it is still not working correctly.
Work on that. Fix the clutch.

I am picking that what you did was to remove the clutch lever and squeeze the perch gap with pliers to remove some of the play there. The installed lever should still flop up and down 10-15mm at the ball end.

Return the clutch lever action, flop and cable slack to OEM. Are both ends of the cable fitted correctly into the cable adjusters? With the correct amount of cable slack are the adjusters reasonably close to how they were before you started?

If there is now too much cable slack.
You originally inferred that you fixed/removed the clutch lever without moving any adjusters. Is this correct? It seemed unlikely. If that was the case remove the oil filler bung from the crankcase and observe the clutch plates. If you now have an inordinate amount of cable slack it could be that you forced a part of the outer clutch plate to sit up on the edge of the clutch drum and it is now jammed there.

Apply the clutch and observe that the plates do move a little. Turn over the engine slowly to see that at rest, all plates are uniform.
 

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If the shifter linkage is not adjusted right you wil experience trouble shifting or finding gears/neutral. I have a pic of mine somewhere, just need to find it .
 

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Discussion Starter #18
If the shifter linkage is not adjusted right you wil experience trouble shifting or finding gears/neutral. I have a pic of mine somewhere, just need to find it .
This was part of the problem - the two opposite-direction nuts on the shifter made it too long.

The bigger problem was that somehow, hidden under the hand guard I'd reinstalled, I'd kinked up the clutch cable by accidentally running it over instead of under the handlebar somewhere, that's why it was so tight. I have no idea how that happened, but it did.

I know I described it as "slack" earlier, but that was the wrong word to use; the lever actually felt kind of heavy/tight, it was the catching of the clutch that was weird, like it barely caught the friction zone at the end of the release point. I eventually put two and two together and removed it all to do over again, which revealed the cable snarl.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
So all is good now? Congrats. You stuck to it and in the end worked out what was wrong.
Well, I figured out what was likely the problem, but will confess to riding it to a dealership mechanic about 15 minutes away from me (what turned out to be 40 minutes riding locally in first gear all the way...) who charged me an hour's rounded-up shop rate for about 45 minutes of while-you-have-lunch-nearby disassembly, reassembly, and adjusting everything to spec of the relevant parts.

I just wanted to get the bike rideable on a nice day off instead of spending all afternoon Googling and futzing around (not having a shop manual, or a garage full of tools other than the basic ones).

But hey, at least I learned something!
 
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