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73shovelheadude
12th October 2009, 21:03
Hey guys need some help here. I just rebuilt the top end of my 73 ironhead sporter. New rings std. cut valves. Bike starts and idles well. compression is great now. the problem is that when i put the bike in gear the clutch is not properly disegaugeing when i drepress the lever. Also the bike is able to while in gear with out disengaugeing the clutch. I have no idea what is goin on. Poped off the clutch cover. cable is fairly new, dont see anything visiblely wrong . Help me out here if you can.

Jafa39
12th October 2009, 21:05
Be quicker to check the stickies.......do what it says in there and you should be fine.

gzine
12th October 2009, 21:09
http://xlforum.net/vbportal/forums/showthread.php?t=465866

73shovelheadude
12th October 2009, 21:22
Be quicker to check the stickies.......do what it says in there and you should be fine.

i went through the stickies allready, could not find info that helps. Im just not understanding why i can start it while in gear, and why when i pull the lever the bike does not move back and forwards.

meanmechanic
12th October 2009, 21:30
i went through the stickies allready, could not find info that helps. Im just not understanding why i can start it while in gear, and why when i pull the lever the bike does not move back and forwards.

1-Are all the balls in the ball and ramp assy?
2-Is primary overfull?
3-Do clutch plates have the correct freeplay (11\32")?
4-Did you replace the primary oil w\something thick (50#-60#)?
Something has to have changed if it worked OK before the topend job

73shovelheadude
12th October 2009, 21:57
1-Are all the balls in the ball and ramp assy?
2-Is primary overfull?
3-Do clutch plates have the correct freeplay (11\32")?
4-Did you replace the primary oil w\something thick (50#-60#)?
Something has to have changed if it worked OK before the topend job

1 yes, i poped off the inspection cap, and can see the clutch move in and out
2 no
3 not sure yet
4 10-40

i only had the bike a short time before i rebuilt it. even before it did not like being but in gear even with the clutch in. but now its really bad. before if i put it in gear the rpms would drop a decent amount

meanmechanic
12th October 2009, 22:26
1 yes, i poped off the inspection cap, and can see the clutch move in and out
2 no
3 not sure yet
4 10-40

i only had the bike a short time before i rebuilt it. even before it did not like being but in gear even with the clutch in. but now its really bad. before if i put it in gear the rpms would drop a decent amount

Sounds like you're gonna have to pull that clutch apart and see what's going on in there. If you're running 10-40 in the primary and trans you're going to have more than clutch probs as thats to thin for trans lube. Please don't tell us you're running 10-40 in the engine. Do you still have a transfer valve working? If so remember primary,trans and engine oil all mixes together eventually ie 50 or 60# oil in engine mixing w\10-40 in the primary and visa versa. These ironheads won't last long on 10-40.

73shovelheadude
12th October 2009, 22:30
Sounds like you're gonna have to pull that clutch apart and see what's going on in there. If you're running 10-40 in the primary and trans you're going to have more than clutch probs as thats to thin for trans lube. Please don't tell us you're running 10-40 in the engine. Do you still have a transfer valve working? If so remember primary,trans and engine oil all mixes together eventually ie 50 or 60# oil in engine mixing w\10-40 in the primary and visa versa. These ironheads won't last long on 10-40.

i really appreciate you feedback. Ill see if i cant pull that clutch apart and see if there is anything wrong. It there anything i should be looking for.

meanmechanic
12th October 2009, 22:41
i really appreciate you feedback. Ill see if i cant pull that clutch apart and see if there is anything wrong. It there anything i should be looking for.

Worn fricton plates, crushed spacer sleeves(if any), bent or heat warped steel plates, worn out ball and ramp assy, what clutch spring(s) installed. when you get this far you'll be doing a clutch job. Before you disassemble the clutch, check the gap between the top plate and the outer plate. 11\32" is what you want.

73shovelheadude
12th October 2009, 23:08
i read about this gap in the manual but i still dont understand what it refers to or how to measure it

dr.feltersnatch
12th October 2009, 23:13
What kind of 10 40 you using? I have heard of motor oil ruining clutches.

IronMick
12th October 2009, 23:18
Before getting into the clutch, how about trying HD Formula + in the primary, and adjusting the clutch according to the factory manual or the Sticky.

73shovelheadude
12th October 2009, 23:30
Before getting into the clutch, how about trying HD Formula + in the primary, and adjusting the clutch according to the factory manual or the Sticky.

I read your stickey recommendeding harley transmission plus for transmission oil. unfortunately I live way to far from a harly dealership. Is this a similar oil like syncromesh or some other more availble oil that you could recommend. Thanks again for everyone's quick reply.

meanmechanic
12th October 2009, 23:38
I read your stickey recommendeding harley transmission plus for transmission oil. unfortunately I live way to far from a harly dealership. Is this a similar oil like syncromesh or some other more availble oil that you could recommend. Thanks again for everyone's quick reply.

Check your local indie as that's where I get my Form+ (Victory Dealer). Remember if you run this stuff Your transfer valve must be plugged or replaced w\plug. It runs approx $9\quart. Not cheap but works.

73shovelheadude
12th October 2009, 23:46
The problem is that i cant even push the bike in gear with the clutch lever pulled. are you saying that the oil is not adequate to keep the clutch from sticking

73shovelheadude
12th October 2009, 23:50
so your saying that the oil is makeing the clutch plates stick. Becase when i pull the clutch and the bike is in gear i cant even push it at all.

1982ironhead
13th October 2009, 00:33
if the steel plates are warped,then the clutch cannot properly disengage and will "drag" if you pull the clutch and put it in gear it could drop 100 RPM, or make it stall out. mine was dragging and slipping, what i did to fix it was..

-new clutch spring
-trim spacers to equal lengths.. if collared/rimmed, collar faces outward towards primary.
-scuffed friction plates to remove glaze
-new steel plates

took about 70 bucks and a few hours and now it does not drop ANY rpms when i put it in gear with the clutch in!

bustert
13th October 2009, 00:54
if you got the manual, go by it. you definitely have a dragging clutch.
make sure you do the mechanical ajustment first with the cable slack and then adjust the cable. the mechanical adjustment is what sets the clutch into freewheel and not the cable. if this adjustment doesn't pan out, you need to look at the clutch pack as was mentioned.

73shovelheadude
13th October 2009, 01:12
thanks again guys, ill play with the adjustment some, if i cant get it to come around ill pull the clutch apart

73shovelheadude
13th October 2009, 03:37
went through the clutch adjustment twice, with not improvement. Two things i should have mentioned earlier thought, even before the rebuild, the bike would almost certainly die when it was put into gear with out reving the engine. Also the guy i bought it from had it sitting in his garage for atleast three years doing nothing. Im starting to think that the clutch disks are soaked, or the plates are warped. Is this a correct assessment? Is there anything else i should check before i jump in?

1976 XL
13th October 2009, 03:58
went through the clutch adjustment twice, with not improvement. Two things i should have mentioned earlier thought, even before the rebuild, the bike would almost certainly die when it was put into gear with out reving the engine. Also the guy i bought it from had it sitting in his garage for atleast three years doing nothing. Im starting to think that the clutch disks are soaked, or the plates are warped. Is this a correct assessment? Is there anything else i should check before i jump in?

Checkout the stickies at the top of the page for special tools, Hopper has a cheap and useful clutch spring compressor shown. Try taking the clutches apart and clean and check them. If it was setting very long they may just be stuck together. Good Luck.

ericfreeman
13th October 2009, 04:15
Up until my clutch cable broke recently, I wasn't having any problems with my '78's clutch. But, after fitting the new Barnett cable and going through the factory adjustment procedure, the clutch was dragging and would kill the engine upon gear engagement. I redid the adjustment but had the same problem, even with the factory specified play at the control lever. Finally took my 7/16" and 1/2" open end wrenches and moved the adjusting sleeve about 1-2 turns further out of the primary case. Fired the bike and checked for drag. Voila! Perfect adjustment! If I were you, I'd try adjusting the threaded sleeve out a turn at a time from the primary. Start the bike, pull in the clutch and drop it in 1st. If it stalls or you can feel the drag, adjust another 1/2 turn out until the drag is gone. If you still can't get rid of the drag after doing this adjustment several times, best to pull the primary and check all the clutch plates.

Eric

Jafa39
13th October 2009, 04:43
That or the grooves are worn....time to pull the cover I reckon...

73shovelheadude
14th October 2009, 02:01
ooook. I made my own clutch tool and removed the cover and the spring and removed the clutch pack to inspect. The steals and friction plates were in good shape. However, just for kicks I trided to move the bike with the clutch pack completly out in first gear. I still could not budge the bike. Shouldn't the bike move freely in gear with the clutch pack complelty removed? kinda lost here

ericfreeman
14th October 2009, 02:05
Yes, with no clutch pack you should be able to move the bike freely in any gear. Have you checked out your chain/sprocket setup on the other side of the bike to ensure there's nothing jammed up in there? What about your rear wheel/axle/brake parts? If all of that checks out, sounds like a problem in the tranny.

Eric

73shovelheadude
14th October 2009, 02:45
Yes, with no clutch pack you should be able to move the bike freely in any gear. Have you checked out your chain/sprocket setup on the other side of the bike to ensure there's nothing jammed up in there? What about your rear wheel/axle/brake parts? If all of that checks out, sounds like a problem in the tranny.

Eric

so i pulled the right side cover and i dont see any chain impingements, brakes are not on in back. It must be some internal problem. Are there any common problems associated with the trannies on these god dam boat anchors. Are there any trannie busing or bearings that easily fail. I have to also thank you guys again for so much help. The manual only takes you so far since these ironheads require so much previous knowledge.

ericfreeman
14th October 2009, 02:55
Sounds like something is either jamming the gears in the tranny or engaging 2 at once. Only solution is to pull the tranny for inspection. I'm facing the task this winter as well due to a problem 2nd gear slippage occasionally. Kind of looking forward to it since it's one of only a few areas of the motor I haven't been in yet.

You'll need to remove the drive sprocket from the right side to pull the tranny out. Finish removing the clutch hub and basket and you can unbolt the trap door and pull the transmission out.

Eric

1982ironhead
14th October 2009, 03:09
You'll need to remove the drive sprocket from the right side to pull the tranny out. Finish removing the clutch hub and basket and you can unbolt the trap door and pull the transmission out.


i wish i knew this a week or two ago and i would have went ahead an pulled my tranny to replace the pawl, i thought there was another trap door on the rigt side so i didnt lol. will this winter though

73shovelheadude
14th October 2009, 05:24
popped off the right side sprocket. just need to find a giant socket for the other side.

bustert
14th October 2009, 15:17
if the machine sat for awhile, the plates could be sticking especially if not maintained as varnish will form on the parts.
as some mentioned, check clutch pack end play before disassembling the pack.
sometimes aftermarket disks are used and the thickness is out of spec. you might have to repack or install a different size outer drive plate if you clutch uses it, earlier ones had a different setup.
also check the spacer collars on the rear plate studs. these will mushroom in time reducing clearance. they should be uniform. these will affect spring tension.

73shovelheadude
14th October 2009, 19:14
if the machine sat for awhile, the plates could be sticking especially if not maintained as varnish will form on the parts.
as some mentioned, check clutch pack end play before disassembling the pack.
sometimes aftermarket disks are used and the thickness is out of spec. you might have to repack or install a different size outer drive plate if you clutch uses it, earlier ones had a different setup.
also check the spacer collars on the rear plate studs. these will mushroom in time reducing clearance. they should be uniform. these will affect spring tension.

i should rename this thread to "what else is wrong with this hunk of crap" No its not the clutch I pulled it and the disks are in good shape. I was able to remove the left side transmission nut, God damm was that thing on there tight, whats the torques spec 300lbs:p. How do i remove the primary chain assembly now that the dive sprocket on the right side is off and the left side nut is off, do i use a three jaw or what, my manual is so unclear because it covers all ironheads.

meanmechanic
14th October 2009, 22:24
The nut is off the clutch hub, unbolt the crank sprocket, use puller on sprocket-unless you have a compensator. See tool section (stickys) to either make it or find one like it. That nut is also 100ft lbs tight. Then both sprockets come off at the same time.
You really need the HD factory manual, it could really help you.;)

bustert
14th October 2009, 23:07
on my 74 ch, i have enough room to remove the basket without pulling the engine sprocket. just have to tilt it.
while it is apart, check plate thickness.

1982ironhead
14th October 2009, 23:58
check plate thickness. what is spec?

73shovelheadude
15th October 2009, 20:30
ok i pulled the transmission. One of the gears has one tooth that is slightly chipped. Could this be the source of my transmission issues. The main roller bearings are in decent shape, i don't see an visible wear.

1982ironhead
15th October 2009, 20:38
not one chipped tooth. could you feel it "clunk into place when you tried shifting through the gears? if you didnt, it was prolly stuck in gear somehow. do gotta wander what caused the gear to chip though.....

73shovelheadude
15th October 2009, 21:48
it was locked in gear before i losened the clutch hub nut that was on tight as hell. The the gears came lose but they were still not smooth. Other than the one tooth, the other gears were in great visible shape, and turned smoothely.

73shovelheadude
15th October 2009, 23:07
here is a picture of the damaged tooth

http://s890.photobucket.com/albums/ac108/thebeerbaron18/?action=view&current=badtooth-1.jpg&newest=1

73shovelheadude
15th October 2009, 23:12
zoom in to see a better view