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Discussion Starter #1
Not sure if this is operator error or a mechanical issue, but, shifting from 1st to 2nd it sometimes won't go into gear, or it's more forcing into 2nd than a smooth transition. Sometimes it works flawlessly however. I've never had this while shifting into any other gear, or while down shifting

When this happens, after shifting from first to second and it doesn't engage, I am now in neutral but moving at 15 mph(just guessing) So if I now attempt to engage second gear, if I ease off the throttle, the gears sound like they are grinding in, if I engage the throttle it seems smoother. I will sometimes slow enough to go back into first

Any advice appreciated
 

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May simply be that the linkage needs a little adjustment for your boots. The throw from 1st to 2nd is longer than the others.

While you look at it make sure all is lubricated and moves feely, including the pivot.
 

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I'm with Blaustrom if you have never greased the gear leaver or the linkage points it is time you did.

Also when people have trouble changing gears they often start to second guess themselves and prepare for the gear change early and lift the pedal a little before they do the change this can cause problems.

Ensure the gear leaver is at the zero position (in the middle) before you attempt the change.

Don't allow your boot or the "stiff leaver" stop it from returning to the zero position & see how that works for you.
 

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....and check that your clutch is correctly adjusted. There is a how to on this site.

Not withstanding all of the above 1st to 2nd is the most missed gear change because of neutral being between them and you need to be a tad more positive with that shift.
 

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On my 2002 DL1000 I find the shift from 2 to 1 is much easier if the bike is still rolling just a bit. If I've already come to a complete stop and need to shift from 2 to 1, it requires a bit more effort.
 

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FORUM GODFATHER.....R.I.P. PAT
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That's a basic for any constant mesh sequential gearbox as almost all motorcycles are. Keep the gear selected appropriate to the speed of travel. Do not stop in any gear but first or neutral. Otherwise, it takes some rocking the bike or easing the clutch to the friction point the get enough motion in the gears to change ratios.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for the advice,

Is pre-loading the shifter advised? Make it easier?

Also, if I should find myself in neutral instead of second, when it doesn't engage,what's the best way to get it back into 2nd gear? It feels like I'm grinding gears if I try getting into2nd at this time.
 

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No. Preloading the shifter might cause an unwanted clutchless shift.
Easing off the throttle to take the strain off the gear cluster will help. Most learn to automatically ease off the throttle as they pull the clutch and move the shifter in one motion.
And I would repeat that 1st to 2nd is the most comonly missed shift and requires a little more positive shifting by the rider to get right every time.
A dragging clutch will also make shifting in the lower gears and finding neutral more difficult.
 

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the grinding makes it sound like a clutch issue to me ?
 

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imho 99.98% of shifting issues are related to lack of shift linkage maintenance,

take the linkage apart, clean thoroughly (make sure you flush any gunk out of the gimbals ) grease, and reassemble

grinding is cause the linkage is so cruddy, it's not letting you make a complete shift

from now on, make shift linkage maintenance part of your routine
 

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Any possibility of just second gear is bad, or damaged, if yes can it be repaired, I'm gear ignorant
It's unlikely. V-Strom's are generally very reliable and you should look at the simple (and cheap) options first.

Have you lubed and checked the operation of the gear linkage yet? Or checked that the clutch is adjusted correctly? These are far more likely culprits. If your gear cluster was damaged I would think that you would very well know that you had a serious problem, and it would occur going down to 2nd gear as well. An engine oil change would have metal in the sump and oil filter.
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
I have the proper clutch free play and have adjusted the clutch by the loosening the lock nut, adjuster screw, as per manual, not just barrel adjustments

as for the "linkage maintenance " what should be done here for smooth shifting? (see photo)
 

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FORUM GODFATHER.....R.I.P. PAT
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Stick the straw on a can of chain lube under each of the rubber covers and give the inside and outside of the linkage a little squirt. Also, do the lever pivot though it's better to take the lever off and grease the pivot.
 
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