Clutchless shifting WR400

Before the WR I rode a 1986 TT350 which I still have. I got into the habbit of not using the clutch under hard acceleration in tight situations. Also, sometime down shifting under similar circumstances. I browsed the archives looking for info about this. Thought I once saw something about it but can't seem to find it now. I would like your ideas about doing this on the WR400. Is the clutch on the WR not as bullet proof as the old TT or can they handle it. Do any of you do the same thing. I would like to get your feed back pro or con. Thanks, Paul M.

The WR/YZ 400's were built to be riden as agressively as a two-banger who's clutches take a floggin' and then some! If kept properly lubricated and adjusted your WR400 clutch should cope with anything you can give it.

Having rebuilt a couple of transmissions on other bikes recently, I've gained a new respect for the internal workings of gearboxes. The gears have "slots" and "dogs" that slide in and out of each other at different rotational speeds. Engaging the clutch when shifting allows the gears to move without tons of load on them, minimizing dog/slot wear and preventing breakage of the dogs or the gear teeth. There are alot of tight tolerances on gear spacers, shift shafts, and shift forks that keep everything working smoothly. There will eventually be a price to pay for abusing the gear box, like hard or missed shifts, sliding past the next gear, and jumping out of gear...

I think I use the clutch a fair bit out of habit from road bikes, but the times when I don't use it, it feels just a great with good positive shifts, both up and down. I also found I had to move the gear lever down a couple of notches to ensure effective up changes. This made a huge difference. On my 2000 model, the clutch comes with an improved operation due to a new clutch lever mechanism. It has a really quick and easy adjustment on the lever. But the best part is that you should hardly ever have to use it.

I use my clutch for starting, stopping and hard braking with the rear brake. Otherwise I will match the revs with the proper gear as close as I can and it shifts great both up and down. This also eliminates clutch friction plate material in the oil to wear everything the oil touches out.


Proud owner of a $10,000 WR and its not enough!

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