Burnt Clutches

OK, I've had my new 2001 XR650R for 2-3 months now and I love it. But, as my UserName states, I'm an EX 2-stroke rider so bear with me.

Has anyone gotten their bike hot enough to glaze the clutches in about 30 seconds? As you can imagine to do this on a new bike sucks, especially when it states on the warranty in bold letters (Clutches not included). The dealer wants $65.00 just to tell me my clutch is not covered and another $200-$300 to fix it. Any comments on what else could have happened?

I was climbing my way out of a rocky canyon when she got hot and before I knew what happened my clutch was slipping bad. It was burnt. Now I know that these 4-strokes share the engine oil with the clutches which adds to the temp of the oil on the clutch. Has anyone ever heard of adding an oil cooler? I was thinking about adding an oil cooler from a bike salvage yard for the slower trail rides when the bike doesn't keep so cool. So I'm turning it over to the boys at T-Talk. Any suggestions or comments? Thanks guys!


I'm betting you know about free play in the clutch cable to keep the clutch from slipping/burning. I have gotten my pig pretty darn hot and my clutch feels ok so far. If you haven't removed the judder spring, do it now. Also, get the updated clutch bushing. I wish I had a definite answer for you. I run my bike hard and it has been trouble free. I run pure power oils on my bike. I have years of testing and racing on their products.

Best of luck,


exbigbore rider

what type of oil are you running? You shouldn't need to put an oiler cooler on this bike... if you adbuse the clutch a lot because of the type of terrain that you ride in you might want to gear the bike down!!

Don't let the dealer put a clutch in your bike if it needs one this is a pretty easy thing to do... If you have any trouble just post on the board and I'm sure that we can help you out!!

also shop around, don't just buy a stock Honda clutch, there are numerous brands out there and some may address your problem!! I think Barnett Makes a clutch for a 650 that has "steel" plates and slightly harder clutch springs!!

I have since changed the friction plates with stock and took the steels to a wire wheel on a bench grinder, then sand paper. Everything seems to be working well, first ride anyway. I wont feel comfortable until about a year from now. I checked about after-market clutches and nobody had a stock number for a 650R. There is a number for a 650L. I think its the last friction plate is an odd ball.

Don't feel bad, my clutch started failing to disengage with less than 200 miles on my new 2001 650R!!!!!!!!! Imagine driving 4 hours round trip just to unload and ride 12 miles!

Thank God I'm moving to Prescott AZ where Diane Feinstein hasn't hailed yet...

I called Scott Summers mechanic as well as Summers Racing Components and got the solution to this clutch problem. I also called a friend of mine at XR's Only and got some good input as well.

There experience has been that all XR's seem to have a lack of oil flow to the clutch. Scotts mechanic suggested this 2 part solution:

1) Add one steel plate to the bottom of the clutch basket.

2) Slightly modify (grind down) the "clutch lifter" to allow more oil flow into the clutch. I believe when you get it apart you'll be able to see this needed mod as clear as day.

(note: he suggested leaving the judder spring alone and had no comment in regards to replacing any bushing).

My friend at XR's Only said leave EVERYTHING alone. Seems they have some aftermarket clutch springs they've been using with great success for some time now.

(note: they lost 3 clutches in one race one time!)

You can give him a call at 1-760-266-2424 and ask for Steve. Tell em Jay sent ya.

I haven't had time to rip mine apart yet but as soon as I do I'll use the XR's Only springs and do the Steal Plate and Clutch lifter mods and let you know.

For anyone who is interested Wade Summers of summers racing components has written a 12 page document which you can get faxed or mailed to you for FREE.

Call 1-800-221-9752 and ask for Kevin, Tell em Jay sent ya.

Hope this helps! I'll post my results when I'm done...

[This message has been edited by jpeters (edited 07-31-2001).]

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