Slipping clutch on Xr650. Learned a trick. Photo's.

I was 100 miles into a 650 mile desert ride when I noticed my clutch started slipping. I only noticed it under hard throttle in 5th gear. This was a 3 day trip and I was prepared to head back to the truck.

Fortunately, the guys I was with made a few phone calls and one suggestion was to put a shoelace between one of the clutch plates. Anything to provide a little friction. The only thing we could come up with was a cotton/poly shoelace which did the trick. That got me through another 150 miles of sand where we replaced the lace with a nice leather lace we bought.

With the leather lace in there, I wasn't able to use my clutch lever, so I had to bang the bike into first gear and hope for the best. Once moving, I just shifted without a clutch. Fortunately, there wasn't much shifting required for the jeep trails we were riding. Mostly 5th gear stuff.

Anyway, I thought I'd share this with the group.

This is mile 100 when I thought my ride was over.


In goes the lace and off I went!


This is the upgraded "Timberland" lace I bought in Primm. That lasted the next 400 miles. Infact, when I took it apart at home, the lace was still intact.


Full ride report in the California section under "Chicken Ranch"

LOL! good ol american ingenuity!

Is that Russ in the KTM garb fixing your Honda?

Go back with a 7 fiber and 6 steel OEM pack and you'll never have another problem.:banghead:

I had 17500 miles on the clutch. I'm not complaining!

I had 17500 miles on the clutch. I'm not complaining!

WOW, I put one in about every season.17,500 is unreal.

Yeah, I thought I got good wear out of it. I messured the plates and they were actually still well withing spec's.

Maybe the springs were weak? I didn't have a way of messuring them.

In any rate, I am pleased with the durability.

According to Scott Summers there is a design error in the BRP clutch. He says the clutch stack isn't thick enough. He suggests adding an additional steel plate to the bottom of the stack. The complete story is here, .

I did this mod on my first XR as soon as I noticed a bit of clutch slippage. In the 6 years I had the bike I never ever replaced the clutch.


Good tip slowxr! :banghead:

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now