Clutch Questions... Please Help!

Ok, I did search and found some stuff, but would really like to detail my specific situation and ask for a sanity check.

Bike - 2004 wrf450 - Bought in July - 600 miles - Just changed the oil and do so regularly.

Generally, when my bike is not in motion, it is in neutral. When I stop, transport, garage, etc. it's almost always in neutral. So, I'm not sure if it's the 4-stroke (my first one), it's the bike, it's normal, etc. but I noticed tonight that while in gear with the clutch lever all the way in, it does not disengage.

I know it's not the cable because I can see where it goes to and that it is moving as it should. In fact, the part above the tranny that moves is sweeping to the point of touching part of the motor and can not travel further.

However, after reading other threads I went to try and "dislodge it" and see if warming it up helped. I started it, let it warm up and put it in first with the clutch lever pulled in and it doesn't move, doesn't really try to move (clunks into gear a bit), but more importantly doesn't stall. I even revved it up and will standing next to (not on it), it still didn't try to pull forward.

After I shut it off, it still does not full disengage but it’s a bit better, not much, but a bit (just enough that the tire will actually roll instead of drag).

Do I have a problem? Is this normal? Please let me know what you think and if you have additional question that may help diagnosing the issue (if I have one).


If the gear shifting is smooth when you ride it, I think you're ok.

The clutch plates being in oil, there's a tendency to engage a little bit because the oil adheres to the clutch plates. Obviously more so when the oil is cold.

If you're still in doubt and want to check the clutch, just inspect the clutch hub and the clutch basket for wear at the points of contact with the clutch plates. If these surfaces are not smooth, the lateral movement of the plates (needed to engage/disengage) may be hindered.

Wet clutches don't completely release . If you can shift to neutral with reasonable ease while the engine is running, and the bike doesn't creep when you rev it a little in gear, it's releasing cleanly for practical purposes. The drag you describe is normal.

Thanks for the responses! Greatly appreciated!

I think for now, I'll continue to ride as normal but maybe check things out at the next oil change or this winter.

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