Clutch 'seized' or 'stuck'

Thursty

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Certainly an unusual problem. If the lever pull is hard for you - a bricklayer - most of us couldn't use it. The assembly appears correct in the recent pics and video. You appear to get about the right amount of movement without the pressure plate. You're right about over-tightening the worm adjuster - it'll break.

Have you removed the pushrods and checked them for damage and also check the bushing for binding? Unusual step, but unusual type of problem.
Tomorrow, if I have time, I will probably have to remove the left side cover and inspect the worm gears... I've been kind of rough on them. I took the bike for a short little ride this evening in order to do two things. 1. get a spark plug reading, 2. see if that loosens up the clutch. It didn't loosen the clutch at all... Hopefully all is good with those gears. In the future, I will refrain from rough-housing them. And yes, it is a VERY tough pull... My carpenter brother-in-law couldn't seem to pull it all the way in enough to engage the clutch unless he used two hands... I was probably too rough...

They honestly looked really good in my previous inspections, however, I have not 'fully' removed the long pushrod yet. I've only pulled it out to what I would guess as 90%. I will fully remove it and inspect it as long as 5twins cable oil concern isn't the fix. Also, which bushing are you referencing? I wouldn't mind inspecting it either way.

Thanks for your advice/help.
 

Thursty

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Yes, pull the pushrod(s) out and inspect. There should be balls in that assembly line too, one between each rod and one at the end under that little pusher part .....

I'm not sure if your model year had the 2 piece pushrod set-up as shown above or still used the long one piece rod (it would replace the 2 rods and the ball between them). Both would have a ball at their end between them and the pusher part. Assembly should be rod-ball-rod-ball-pusher part. Wherever 2 rods meet, there should be a ball between them. The adjuster screw can also be considered just a very short rod and that's why there's a ball between it and the 1st pushrod. Maybe someone put 2 balls together? To check if the assembly does have the correct amount of balls, you can measure how much of the pushrod sticks out of the case. It should be about 48mm .....
I could be wrong, but I believe mine has the long one piece rod with ball bearings dividing it with the adjuster screw, and the pressure plate pushrod (short one with the pusher part). I will take yours and jpdevols advice, and inspect the rods, along with the distance that the pushrod sticks out of the case. Also, thanks for your help.
 

jpdevol

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The bushing: everything else first, as its 1) a rare problem, and 2) it sits in the end of the mainshaft under the pushrod seal. So, to really inspect it requires that seal to be removed. I can see where it could be one of those things that would cause the symptom only when under load. I'd pull all the rods and ball bearings out and inspect - especially the long rod - check straightness (roll across flat surface).

Did you notice if the long rod had back-forth play in the seal? The pushrod seal is a common leak point from a number of causes (rod, bushing, etc.)
 

Thursty

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The bushing: everything else first, as its 1) a rare problem, and 2) it sits in the end of the mainshaft under the pushrod seal. So, to really inspect it requires that seal to be removed. I can see where it could be one of those things that would cause the symptom only when under load. I'd pull all the rods and ball bearings out and inspect - especially the long rod - check straightness.

Did you notice if the long rod had back-forth play in the seal? The pushrod seal is a common leak point from a number of causes (rod, bushing, etc.)
I did not notice, however, I will check next time its apart. I'm going to deal with the cable first. Then face those things. I don't really feel like draining the oil again if I can help it haha...

Can I just use engine oil for oiling the clutch cable?

Also, in my haste to get things done, I 'may' have damaged the new gasket I installed on the right side cover... Do you guys have a recomendation for gaskets that work best? I had a green one from xs650direct. Also, what is the best way to remove old gasket (super super old) without damaging the case surface? I used a razor blade paint scraper, but would rather use somethings that's more careful, and does a clean job of 'completely' removing every little bit.
 

5twins

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Yes, motor oil is the preferred cable lube. That spray cable lube is too thin, making it's benefits pretty much disappear in a few days. That green gasket was probably an Athena. They've worked very well for me, even though they look kinda funky, lol. For removing old, stuck on gaskets, I use plain old paint stripper. It softens them up so they can be easily scraped off without damaging the metal case. It may take several applications to get it all off. Apply, let soak for 10 minutes or so, and scrape off what has softened, then re-apply and repeat.
 

jpdevol

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I'm not a fan of the green gaskets (Athena). I think Vesrah are better, but in this case XS650direct may be the most expedient.

The best gasket scraper IMO
https://www.amazon.com/Motion-Pro-Gasket-Scraper/dp/B07NBLDMTK/ref=asc_df_B07NBLDMTK
41db4tkpNDL._SL1001_.jpg
 

Thursty

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One more question for now haha: how tight should the pressure plate screws/springs be?

Thanks guys.
 

jpdevol

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7ftlbs (IDK what that is in metric). Typical torque for 6mm threaded into aluminum
 

5twins

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Another thing you want to do is keep the worm really well greased. The ribs on one part of the worm fit into the grooves on the other, so pack those grooves full of grease on both parts .....

WormGrease.jpg


Then screw the parts together and wipe off any excess grease that squeezes out.
 

Thursty

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Well guys... Sorry it's taken me so long to get back to you, I've had a busy couple of nights. So last time we talked, I had decided that at the top of my list was now to oil my cable. And I want to apologize for knowingly overlooking such a simple maintenance requirement. I guess that in my haste, I just figured that because my new cable was smoother functioning (while disconnected from the bike) than the old one, that the 'seized' problem, must have been related to something else, and so I placed cable lube at the bottom of the totem pole... I will assure you however, that everything done was not in vain. Throughout the process, I was able to learn more about the clutch system, and how it works, along with maintenance that I may have not performed otherwise. I also learned how to properly calibrate the left side clutch mechanism, and things to watch out for in the future. From now on, when it comes to clutch systems, the cable will be the first thing I look at... I guess I didn't realize how under pressure, the cable could bind so much. When I sit back and think about it, it really does make sense though. Clutch works good now haha! Thanks to the cable being the problem, my worm gears would not have been under any unnecessary load that could have damaged them. I also greased them in the process. Thanks for your help guys. On to the next thing!
 

5twins

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Yep, sometimes it's the little things that get you, lol. I try to get under that left cover once a season, clean it all up, clean and re-grease the worm, and oil the cable.
 

Crashedkiwi

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The dot must be visible in the hole.
clutch-sequence-jpg.108565


Ball bearing. Originally, 8mm. But, 5/16" works quite well...
the bearing was held inside the worm by staked tabs but it can fall out when the cover is removed after lots of miles, wear.
Thanks so much for posting this ! I was going seven shades of silly reassembling the basket - three different manuals (Clymer, Haines & an engine specific brought from MikeXS) and none of them indicate lining up the whole in the spring plate with the internal mark. Such a simple thing that makes a material difference. There’s a beer in the fridge for ya!
 
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