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Sportster Motorcycle Transmission, Clutch, Primary & Secondary Drive Transmission, Clutch and primary or secondary drive problems, advice, and/or how tos.

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shifting loose sloppy

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  #1  
Old 14th November 2018
GT Cyclery GT Cyclery is offline
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Default Loose/Sloppy Shifting

My 01 883 has had this problem since I bought it. The bike has 16k miles on it and I have ridden it about 1k. The shifting feels very loose and sloppy. The shift lever has lots of travel (forward controls) and when the bike is cruising down the road I can't even feel it shift (click) when I change gears. I also ride a 2007 softail and the difference in shifter feel is day and night. My heart desires a short, crisp click against my foot and the sportster will not give it to me. I also have an issue once in while where it gets hung up between 4th and 5th. Somewhat of a neutral position but it makes a grinding noise until I pop it into gear. This only happens when I'm not being conscious of the problem and forget to give the lever a thorough push or pull. I have checked the primary chain. Everything looks groovy through the window.

Any ideas as to the root of these issues? Are they related? Is the sloppy shifting the nature of the beast (5 speed sportsters)?

Any help is much appreciated.
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  #2  
Old 14th November 2018
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Toejam503 Toejam503 is offline
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Usually, sloppy shifting, on an evo 5-speed is due to worn out shift linkage. The catch between gears can come from this too. To be sure, make sure your primary chain is adjusted to specs. To test the looseness of the shift linkage (all the mechanical rods and bushings outside of the primary case) with the bike Not running, grab the shifter and move it around to see how much play you have. You shouldn't have much more than an 1/8"-1/4". Any more than that and you may need new rod end ball joints or even the forward control mount sleeved. The next alternative would be the shifting forks inside the tranny. There are other threads on this in the forum. Check them out.
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Old 14th November 2018
GT Cyclery GT Cyclery is offline
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Default

Thanks for the help. I've looked at the linkage a bit. I've noticed some play but I don't believe it has more than 1/4''. I will give it a closer look tonight with what you have said in mind. I will also check into the threads on shifting forks. Your time is appreciated.
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  #4  
Old 14th November 2018
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Toejam503 Toejam503 is offline
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Didn't realize you're new here. Welcome to the forum from North Dakota. My 2006 1200C, 30,000 mi., doesn't have any more than an 1/8" play at the shifter. They are supposed to be this tight. Good Luck.
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  #5  
Old 14th November 2018
koolbreeze koolbreeze is offline
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Welcome to the forum from South Central PA. In addition to Toejam's recommendations, make sure all the linkage, bushings and movable parts are clean with the appropriate grease/lube. Linkage can feel sloppy if the grease/lube is dirty or buildup of crud.
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