Clutch wont adjust/work properly

Hey Thumper Talk community 

I've been all over the forums trying to find out what is going on with my 09 drz400sm clutch. So during the end last riding season I noticed my clutch lever started feeling poor. Just didn't give a very good feel but still functioned just fine. I thought the lever just needed to be adjusted. So in preparing for this up coming riding season here in Minnesota I started to adjust my clutch lever. No matter how I adjusted it at the lever/perch/cable area I could not get it dialed in. I then proceed to work on the clutch arm and see if that was the problem. From what I was reading the clutch throwout post needs to be rotated all the way counterclockwise, then the arm place in either the original position or parallel to the bike. I feel like I have tried every position and every time it leads little to no room in the cable to adjust it at the perch and wont fully disengage the transmission. The clutch lever has great feel but no slack in the line and will barely allow me to rotate the rear tire while the lever is in and in gear.(not fully disengaging) 

I started to think something inside the clutch was wrong even though it worked fine last season. I followed this clutch inspection guide and everything is in tolerance.

I'm kind of stumped. I even tried to put everything back to how it was last season to see if i could get something but no luck. I have zeta levers and a replacement cable (original cable snapped). Both worked fine in the past.

Let me know if you have any suggestions. I appreciate your time.




Good looking bike.

I had this issue when replacing a clutch cable. I followed Eric's guide too (placing the arm at 6 o'clock), but got better results with it moved 1 notch to the right, about 4 o'clock. And IIRC I didn't have much free cable at the lever, but tighten the the inline adjuster all the way for as much as possible. When you get in the lever, tighten it by spreading out the inline adjuster. At first the clutch wasn't fully disengaging, but somehow after riding it started to completely disengage. No idea how.

Now the lever is really soft and can completely disengage before getting to the handlebar. I also have Zeta levers and stock cable so I know it's possible!

Edited by HansLanda

Thanks for the advice. 

I see what your saying about the adjusters and position of the arm, ill give it a shot. Maybe I will take it for a test ride with the clutch being a little goofy and see if it starts to fix itself.

Justin, I'm having a similar problem. Did everything start working after you rode it, or did you find another fix? Thanks.

16 hours ago, travisdcc said:

Justin, I'm having a similar problem. Did everything start working after you rode it, or did you find another fix? Thanks.


I just messed with the cable, adjuster, and the arm long enough to get it close enough to ride and then after riding it got a little better. I still don't care for how it feels but at least it works. Sorry I don't have a perfect answer, I just tried about every combination adjusting it tell it worked. 

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