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Discussion Starter #1
I've just had my 2017 TW200 since Tuesday, and have just under 50 miles on it.

From the beginning, the clutch cable - or something - felt draggy.


It's bad enough that pulling away from a stop is a tad jerky. The cable appears to be routed properly.

Just curious if this is at all normal on a new bike - I'd imagine not.
 

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I bought one last month and my clutch would stick so bad that when you tried to put it in gear it stalled. Getting better now with a little wear on it. I just changed oil and went to Mobil1 4tr and it even shifts better and the clutch feels better.
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Thanks, all.

Subjectively it feels like something binding in the cable or lack of lubrication.

I may troubleshoot tomorrow or just run by the dealer Monday or Tuesday.

I'm used to hydraulic clutches on modern BMW's and KTM's. But even the cable-operated clutch on my Buell is much smoother than this - when properly lubricated.
 

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something to check is an assembly line flaw common on all TW's from 1987 to present I would say 1 in 10 bikes have this clutch related assembly mistake or oversight. It should not cause any problems but in theory it does involve a clutch return / retraction spring. Look on top of your engine case on the rear left top side and look at the clutch actuator arm and make sure the return spring engages the arm and is not tucked underneath it. Another thought is TW's do run an oil bathed wet clutch and when plates are "dry" from sitting or prolonged storage the plates can stick together. Note the first time you engage the transmission after a cold start the bike will lurch forward because the clutch plates have not fully rotated therefore not fully bathed in oil
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Lube the clutch cable.
Obviously my first inclination.

As an aside, later model BMWs with cables recommended against lubrication. The reasoning was they were lined with self-lubricating Teflon, and all oil would do was serve as a magnet for dirt and grit.

I guess I can assume we do not have a cable like that on our clutch?
 

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What Placer load said is the first DIY inspection to do. Lube the cable is the second and last thing is to take it to your selling dealer and have them do what ever warranty repair is necessary to make it right. There should be no charge at all and a dealer mechanic should identify the offender in a matter of minutes.

One thing we have seen a number of times here is complaints about how wonky the clutches are. Hard to describe but if you take the complete throw of the clutch lever from fully out to fully in touching the grip there is only a very short amount of that complete travel that has any effect at all in engaging and disengaging the clutch plates. If the lever travels 3 inches from out to in there is usually only about 3/4 of an inch in that travel that does anything.

GaryL
 
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My new 2016 did exactly the same thing. I lubed the cable and stretched the return spring hoping that smooth it out but it didn't. The irritating part was the cable was smooth most of the way right until the clutch would start to engage then it would start sticking and the tw would lunge forward. I was pretty pissed thinking crap I guess this is what you get when you buy a bike with a msrp of $4599. Anyways I can't remember exactly when, but it will get smoother and eventually won't stick at all somewhere in the 150 -250 mile range if you do a lot of stop and go. Of course I switched to amsoil synthetic oil at 100 miles so that may have helped to. But I will say that I came to the conclusion that this issue was internal and had nothing to do with external springs or lube.


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Discussion Starter #10
MAJOR clue today!

I went out today to troubleshoot. Looked at the clutch arm as I pulled and released the lever, and - surprise - it was smooth as silk. Well, almost.

Nothing had changed other than the bike sitting overnight. My guess is the binding is in the clutch rod in a warm engine.

My KTM had a similar issue when cold. KTM offered a fix - a new clutch rod made of a different material. I think it was originally aluminum and the replacement was steel, but it might have been vice versa. The idea, I think, was dissimilar expansion rates causing the binding.

I may go ahead and do an oil change at around 100 miles. I'll just wait and see if the clutch rod wears in a bit, or if a different oil helps. I may still run it by the dealer in case it's something more serious.

And thanks for all the suggestions!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks. I have one of those pressure-lube thingies around somewhere. I used to use TriFlow, allegedly with Teflon, on my bikes that needed cable lubing. Another trick was to fabricate a little funnel at the lever end and allow lube to run through due to gravity.

I would hope they would come from the factory pre-lubed.

In any case, at least for now that does not seem to be the proximate cause of my stickiness, since it went away overnight.
 

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have had mine for about 3 weeks. Had the same exact issue. The clutch tension spring and about 20 decent trail miles and mine is cured. The dealers seem to ,for some reason, tend to miss attaching it properly on a regular basis.
 

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I wasn't real happy with mine either...seemed like it worked decent until the friction zone and then it's like you almost had to push the lever back out. I verified the 'return spring' and it was okay. I took the cable off the lever end, built a little funnel out of a few wraps of electrical tape and ran 3-in-1 oil down through it and worked the cable end in and out until the oil came out the other end. It still has the 'way out there' friction zone that every TW has but it's nice and smooth. Much improved. I can't see dirt accumulating; there's a boot on the bottom end and a boot over everything at the lever.
Oh, and if you run lube down through it, you'll likely end up having to secure the end of the bottom boot to the threaded part of the adjuster with a cable tie. The oil will cause it to keep slipping off the threads.
 
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