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Farkle Purchasing System
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Discussion Starter #1
It started happening this morning: sometimes when I pull the clutch in, I hit what feels like a hard stop, before the normal end of travel.

Sometimes it's just a little ways in. Sometimes it's about half or 3/4 the way to full action (i.e. lever touching the handlebar).

It's not really a hard stop, though. If I keep the pressure on, at least some of the time, there is a slightly squishy feeling as the lever slowly moves the way I'm trying to move it.

Naturally, all this is quite distracting while on the street, and I wasn't sure I was going to be able to ride home.

It doesn't affect upshifts so much - those are do-able without the clutch lever - but it's a real problem for downshifts. Several of them were jerky because I simply couldn't get the clutch to cooperate in time.

I can't do a lot of tinkering until I'm home, but here are 3 things I've looked at:

--is my Barkbuster somehow interfering w/lever movement? I don't think so. If anything it keeps the lever from getting 100% out as far as it can physically go, but that's never mattered because there's some slop in the mechanism, such that the clutch must be pulled in perhaps 1/2" (of end-movement) before anything really happens. Shouldn't be any way it can interfere with pulling clutch in.

--no fluid leaks. Checked clutch master cylinder - level is as high as ever. Don't smell brake fluid or see evidence of leakage from behind the front sprocket cover.

--no apparent problem with the physical linkage on the lever end. Lever doesn't stick with lateral pressure, either up or down. Perch isn't loose. It's as if the problem is somewhere in the hydraulic side of things.

One more thing:

--I can't reproduce the problem reliably. It seems totally random, and unrelated to engine being warmed-up or not.

Obviously, taking off the front sprocket cover could reveal some things, but I can't do that until I'm back home later.

Haven't found any threads about a problem like this, lucky me?
 

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Maybe some notches on the "tabs" in the basket that need to be filed out?
 
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Farkle Purchasing System
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Discussion Starter #3
I was hoping to put off a clutch basket refurb but if it's time, it's time.

My rebuilt-by-Sasquatch shock is supposed to arrive today. Figures.
 

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Farkle Purchasing System
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Discussion Starter #4
Mystery solved.

Tl;Dr: problem was where some idiot last had his booger hooks.

Details later.
 

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Farkle Purchasing System
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Discussion Starter #5
Went out to the parking lot and messed with stuff.

Cause revealed: The wire for my left Oxford heated grip was getting pinched under the clutch lever near the base.

I guess it was flopping around in the breeze this morning - that's why I had sticky clutch sometimes, but not others.

Fix was simple: move cable, velcro-tie it in place so it can't wander.
 

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Good thing, seriously starting to think your 1000 is cursed. :)
 
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Farkle Purchasing System
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Discussion Starter #7
You and me both.

Sasquatch-upgraded shock is out for delivery. Hoping to have it swapped in by tomorrow.
 

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Farkle Purchasing System
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Discussion Starter #8
Of course it wasn't that simple.

Random sticky clutch on the way home too.

Cleaned out the area behind the front sprocket cover but that wasn't it either, although I did find evidence of the utter incompetence of the last shop that worked on the bike. You know that nut that helps secure the fuel tank in its front bracket? Yeah, that was sitting in the grime and grease below the clutch pushrod.

The problem must be in the clutch master cylinder. It isn't leaking, but there must be a worn out seal or bushing or something that sticks occasionally. Hoping I can McGuyver it well enough to last until proper replacement parts arrive.
 

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I thought Sasquatch said your shock was too pitted / rusted to be rebuilt?
 

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More likely to be in the slave cylinder. I expect you will find quite a lot of gunk in it?
 
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Farkle Purchasing System
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Discussion Starter #11
I thought Sasquatch said your shock was too pitted / rusted to be rebuilt?
The first one was. Second time was the charm.

It's waiting until tomorrow for the install though. Need to read up on how to do it, and it feels like 150°F in my garage.
 

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Farkle Purchasing System
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Discussion Starter #12
More likely to be in the slave cylinder. I expect you will find quite a lot of gunk in it?
Negative, it looked and moved fine. Rubber "cup" is fine, wasn't pinched or binding on anything.

There was a metric ton of filthy gunk, mostly composed of flung chain lube and dirt, in the general area behind the front sprocket cover. But, as it was all greasy, not seeing how it would prevent movement. Cleaned that area extensively, put it all back together.

Took off the clutch lever. Pivot and bearings were almost completely dry, so I cleaned, liberally applied white lithium grease, and reassembled. Pushrod to the master cylinder was well-greased but dirty, so I cleaned and re-greased it.

That made the problem a little easier to deal with, but I still get resistance from the lever on some strokes, no pattern I can see. I can get the clutch to move, I just have to use an abnormal amount of force sometimes.

Must be a problem on the other side of the lever pushrod seal (or whatever that's called). Guess I'll have to drain the master cylinder and take it apart completely.

I'm thinking it's time to replace all the seals in the whole clutch actuation system and be done with it. Is there a good aftermarket kit, or am I stuck waiting for OEM parts?
 

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Farkle Purchasing System
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Discussion Starter #14
Ok, and where does one get this fabled master cylinder rebuild kit I've read about in some older threads?

Do you just order OEM replacements for everything that goes in the channel in the bottom of the clutch master cylinder?

Inspecting those bits will require draining the master cylinder, which is ok I guess, brake fluid is cheap.
 

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I have the cable clutch DL650 but if it was me I would take it apart, inspect the interior for wear and if O.K. replace #24 and #28, and bleed and replace the oil.
I have heard DL1000 owners say how they can rebuild the slave cylinder 2-3 times before needing to replace the unit.
 

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Farkle Purchasing System
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Discussion Starter #16
Going to drain clutch fluid and have a look at all the movey bits today.

I've got nothing better to do, as the rear shock swap turned into a complete debacle and I am awaiting a reply from the rebuilder.

Messing with the clutch lever some more, it does "feel" as if the problem must be further down the line than the master cylinder. The rubber boot around the pushrod for the MC is in tatters, but I don't feel any lack of smoothness in operation of the MC. If anything, it happily generates enough pressure to overcome whatever's holding up the works.
 

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Farkle Purchasing System
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Discussion Starter #17
Slave cyl disassembled.

The rubber seal looks fine, almost brand new.

Piston looks great too.

One saving grace of all this clutch work: the whole system holds only about 100 ml of fluid, unless I misread the reservoir on my brake bleed pump. So at least it isn't TOO big a mess when draining/bleeding.
 

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Are you sure your grip is not moving.
 

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Farkle Purchasing System
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Discussion Starter #20 (Edited)
Cleaned up the inside of the slave cylinder with some fine sandpaper, flushed with brake cleaner to make sure I got any fine particles. Reassembled, refilled fluid and bled.

Clutch still requires a ridiculous amount of force sometimes. Totally random as far as I can tell. However....I can overcome the resistance just by squeezing extra hard, more easily so than previously, so cleaning up the slave cylinder seems to have helped.

I still haven't pulled the MC components. Need to. The SC bits sure looked great and are super-smooth so I can't imagine why they'd bind.

Again thankful for the small clutch system volume. Not a big deal to drain and refill fluid a second or third time, if needed.

Of course, when I was trying to fix this yesterday I got the locating stud on the SC a little cockeyed and cracked the super fragile socket it goes in. Lovely. Guess I'll have to drill the end of the crack and hope I can fix with JB Weld. At least it's not a critical structural component. I'm not buying a whole new stator cover over that stupid thing.
 
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