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Having problems with downshifting (unless I'm rolling)


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I noticed the problem start yesterday,though it may have begun earlier than that. Also, I just did an oil change with 20-50w motul (not synthetic) a few days ago.

Basically, I can't downshift without going at least 5 mph. When I'm at a stop or less than 5-10 mph and in let's say third, downshifting usually only lets me go into 2nd, then I have let out the clutch until she catches, then it'll let me downshift all the way down to first.

Or if I'm in 2nd it'll only let me downshift into neutral, then I have to let the clutch out, pull it back in, then it'll let me downshift to first.

Also, sometimes when I downshift it makes a pretty hard noise and gives a very lightly noticeable jerk(the clutch is in.)

Any ideas? I really don't think this has to do with oil, as upshifting is just great... no slipping whatosever. I need some help before I leave work today.

Thanks guys,

Jere

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The issue is probably your clutch - which is the weak link on many Suzuki's. Make sure you only have 8-10 mm of clutch free play - no more. This helps make sure the plates are pulling apart and releasing the power from the gear sets.

How many miles are on your bike??? Year??

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8-10 mm is way too much. Free play at the perch should be about the thickness of a nickel (not too long before no one knows what that is).

But having problems shifting when moving very slow or stopped is somewhat normal. Gentle pressure on the lever and in a few feet it will snick into gear. This assumes you have no load on the engine/trans.

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Could someone define free play? And yeah, I understand that it could be normal. And I would think it's normal, except for it wasn't this hard a week ago. I was able to downshift simply by rolling the bike forward a bit and pushing down on the gear lever. Now I have to let the clutch out.

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No. Free play is the amount you can pull the lever from rest with nearly no resistance. Normally about 1 to 2mm lever to lever perch or about 6 to 10mm at the end of the lever. When the lever is at rest the cable is slack. When the slack disappears as the lever is pulled, that is when free play is gone.

Friction point causing clutch engagement/disengagement is different. It can be moved with free play but some free play is always needed in the system.

I suspect your oil change did affect shifting. But probably in a good way. Your description is the clutch is disengaging so completely, the gears stop spinning too soon to shift at a walking speed. Do your down shifting as the bike is still moving will help.

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ya but the problem is, I have to be moving pretty fast and make sure i get it in first-- so if I have to stop suddenly and can't get into first fast enough.. I'm unable to move for about three seconds.

So what you're saying Noble is that my bike is in better shape now that I can't downshift when fully stopped?

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Nobody can down shift full stopped. That is not how a constant mesh transmission works. Just feed the clutch lever out a little bit to spin the gear sets and it will shift. I don't mean to sound like an asss here but what is your riding experience?

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Road MX when I was 14, just got back into it these passed few months. Not a ton of riding experience, but I was always able to downshift while stopped.

What does riding experience have to do with anything anyways? I accept that I'm in a huge learning phase, but you'll never catch me asking the same thing twice. Isn't that what these forums are for?

I guess what I'm trying to say is, asking me irrelevant questions like "what's your riding experience" does make you sound kind of like an ass. If noobs are discouraged to ask questions that they otherwise wouldn't know, it could end up really screwing them over with unnecessary repairs down the road. And I'm sure there's a handful of people on here that don't mind lending a hand to those who are in the position that even the veterans were once in themselves.

When stopped, rock the bike back and forth slithly while applying pressure on the shifter with the clutch fully squeezed.

Even when i rock the bike back and forth it won't down shift.

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Your riding experience has a lot to do with how much detail I would put into a response. I do not think it was an irrelevant question. I could explain to you in detail how transmission works, but that would be silly if I was responding to William or Eddie or hundreds of others.

Someone trying to down shift standing still sounds like some one with little experience. Someone with years of experience having trouble down shifting is a different situation. I only know what you post. Not what is in your head. Maybe you do have a mechanical problem. I can't tell. I do not know of any mechanical problem that will stop you from down shifting standing still but allows normal up shifting when moving.

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just a left handed thought could you shift lever be loose , that would make it difficult to shift

I'll go out and check within the hour.

Your riding experience has a lot to do with how much detail I would put into a response. I do not think it was an irrelevant question. I could explain to you in detail how transmission works, but that would be silly if I was responding to William or Eddie or hundreds of others.

Someone trying to down shift standing still sounds like some one with little experience. Someone with years of experience having trouble down shifting is a different situation. I only know what you post. Not what is in your head. Maybe you do have a mechanical problem. I can't tell. I do not know of any mechanical problem that will stop you from down shifting standing still but allows normal up shifting when moving.

This I understand. Apologies, did not know you had intentions to alter your answer based on my response.

To clarify, I don't downshift standing still while I am riding. I was merely using that as an example. The problem is that even around 5-7 mph, the bike will not go from 2nd to 1st, but into neutral-- and at this point I have to let the clutch out and squeeze it back in so I can downshift into first.

I can change my riding habits so I'm downshifting to first by ~13 or so mph, but I'm confused as to why my bike's habits would suddenly make it so I can't downshift at a stop without letting the clutch out and pulling it back in

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Your added detail does make it sound odd. You should be able to easily shift from 2nd to 1st while rolling only a few miles an hr. It is just a mater of keeping the internal gear sets spinning a little.

Try up shifting and down shifting without using the clutch just as an experiment. It takes a little practice but I'm sure you were doing it when moto crossing. Use the throttle to release driving pressure on the gears, then shift. This might help to diagnose the problem.

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