How to replace your clutch cable


Step-by-step tutorials on how to maintain and fix your GL1100
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WingAdmin
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How to replace your clutch cable

Postby WingAdmin » Sat Feb 28, 2009 11:56 pm



The clutch cable probably does the most work of any cable on your motorcycle. Changing this cable is easier if you remove the false tank and air box, but it is not required, and can be done without it. Changing the clutch cable should take about one hour. I bought my replacement clutch cable at Puget Sound Motorcycles' eBay store at a very good price.

1. Remove the side covers.

2. Pull the rubber dust boot off of the clutch lever.

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3. On the base of the clutch lever, you will see the adjustment screw. Loosen the lock nut all the way, and line its slot up with the slot in the screw. Unscrew the screw all the way out of the clutch lever housing. Pull the cable housing to expose the bare metal cable inside, and remove the screw and lock nut from the cable.

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4. Move the bare cable towards the front of the bike, pulling it out of the slot in the clutch lever and the clutch lever housing, and allow the cable end to come out of the lever base.

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5. Locate the clutch, near the rear brake pedal:

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6. Loosen the bottom nut, and back it off the threaded rod all the way, until it comes off the bottom. You may need to move the protective rubber portion from the bottom of the threaded rod, first.

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7. Pull the threaded road upwards, until just the inner cable is inside the bracket. Move the cable to one side, and remove it from the bracket entirely.

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8. Remove the cable end from the clutch actuator end.

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9. Tie a string securely to the handlebar end of the clutch cable, around the cable end. This will ensure that when you pull the new cable through, that it is routed precisely the same way the old cable was.

10. Pull the old cable out from the bottom end, allowing the string to move through the bike.

11. Tie the string to the handlebar end of the new clutch cable. You may wish to lubricate the new clutch cable first.

12. Using the string, pull the new clutch cable back through the bike up to the handlebars.

13. At the bottom end, remove the bottom nut from the threaded rod. Move the top nut to the top of the threaded rod.

14. Insert the cable end into the clutch actuator.

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15. Move the bare cable into the bracket, and push the rod down into the bracket from the top. Screw the bottom nut onto the threaded rod, holding it in place. Make sure the rod is as far down as it can go, and that the cable end does not come out of the clutch actuator.

16. At the handlebar end of the cable, push the cable end (including its plastic protective shell) into the clutch lever. Thread the bare wire in the slot in the clutch lever and the clutch lever housing.

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17. Push the bare cable into the slot on the adjustment screw and lock nut. Turn the lock nut 1/2 turn to prevent the cable from coming out. Screw the screw and lock nut into the clutch lever housing, as far as it will go.

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18. At the bottom end, push the clutch actuator up with your finger. You will feel it pivot upwards very easily, until it gets to the actual clutch actuation point, at which point it is very difficult to push upwards any further using your finger. The "easy" clutch travel is the free play. Adjust the two nuts on the threaded rod so that the amount of free travel is 15mm (5/8 inch) between full cable extension and clutch engagement. Tighten both nuts securely at this point so that the adjustment won't change.

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19. Adjust the clutch lever adjustment screw so that there is between 10mm to 20mm (3/8 inch to 3/4 inch) of free play measured at the end of the clutch lever. Tighten the lock nut to lock the adjustment in place. There should not be more than 8mm (5/16 inch) of adjuster threads showing beyond the clutch lever housing - if there is, adjust the threaded rod at the bottom end to compensate.

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20. Replace the clutch lever dust boot.

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robertdawber
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Re: How to replace your clutch cable

Postby robertdawber » Thu Apr 15, 2010 9:24 pm

In changing my cable tonight I tried to move the clutch ( at the engine) before placing the new cable on-it moved without feeling as though it is doing anything...just sort of up and back to it's position. No tension. Now, there is no oil in the engine (not filled yet after water pump replacement)
Is this normal??
Bob

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WingAdmin
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Re: How to replace your clutch cable

Postby WingAdmin » Thu Apr 15, 2010 10:33 pm

There is some free play at the engine end - you might be just moving the little lever through its free play, and not actually far enough to disengage the clutch. It takes quite a bit of force to disengage the clutch at that lever - more than you can really do with your finger.

robertdawber
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Re: How to replace your clutch cable

Postby robertdawber » Fri Apr 16, 2010 5:51 am

WingAdmin wrote:There is some free play at the engine end - you might be just moving the little lever through its free play, and not actually far enough to disengage the clutch. It takes quite a bit of force to disengage the clutch at that lever - more than you can really do with your finger.

I hope so-I do not want to do any clutch work!

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littlebeaver
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Re: How to replace your clutch cable

Postby littlebeaver » Sat Nov 27, 2010 11:44 pm

It is wise to carry an extra clutch cable...Take it from experience..

tommydog
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Re: How to replace your clutch cable

Postby tommydog » Fri May 18, 2012 6:59 pm

Will a clutch cable oh a 83 1200 work on a 79 1000 They do not hook up the same way the 1200 hooks up like the 1100 shows up above I have not got the cover off where the 1000 hooks up kinda hard 2 get to. Im Kinda scared 2 take it apart til i get another cable TY

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Devil-Doc
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Re: How to replace your clutch cable

Postby Devil-Doc » Wed Sep 19, 2012 5:44 am

Whoever posted this didn't really word it very well and didn't explain a few things well either. For one, how do I get the cable out of the bottom actuator?

Also do I tie the string to the new cable and the old cable?

Their are no photos of this at all. The author of this post assumes all readers know what he's talking about.

Why is a string needed when the bike already comes with a large sheath for the cable to fit into that travels all the way to the bottom??

A video of this procedure would be nice. I will try to make one when my friend who is not a motorcycle mechanic tries to install it for me today.

He is a small engine mechanic so is better suited for this task than me, I am not mechanically unlined at all.

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WingAdmin
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Re: How to replace your clutch cable

Postby WingAdmin » Wed Sep 19, 2012 8:48 am

Devil-Doc wrote:Whoever posted this didn't really word it very well and didn't explain a few things well either. For one, how do I get the cable out of the bottom actuator?


If you look closely at this picture, you can see the slot in the actuator at the bottom end. The end molded onto the end of the wire pulls down a little bit once it is loosened, and the wire can then be pulled out of the actuator to the right, through that slot. It's actually quite easy:

Image

Devil-Doc wrote:Also do I tie the string to the new cable and the old cable?

Their are no photos of this at all. The author of this post assumes all readers know what he's talking about.

Why is a string needed when the bike already comes with a large sheath for the cable to fit into that travels all the way to the bottom??


The cable is replaced, sheath and all - that's what is meant when "cable" is referred to. You can't replace just the inner wire, as it has hard-mounted ends on both ends of the wire cable, which you couldn't pull through the sheath. So replacement clutch cables come assembled, sheath and all.

The reason for the string is to make sure the new cable is routed the same way as the old one. You tie the string to the end of the outer sheath of the old cable, then pull the old cable out, trailing the string behind. The string is then untied from the old cable and tied to the new cable. You then pull the new cable back into place using the string. This ensures you don't accidentally route the cable somewhere where it might get pinched while steering, etc.

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patbrandon1
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Re: How to replace your clutch cable

Postby patbrandon1 » Wed Sep 19, 2012 11:15 am

Devil-Doc wrote:Whoever posted this didn't really word it very well and didn't explain a few things well either. For one, how do I get the cable out of the bottom actuator?

Also do I tie the string to the new cable and the old cable?

Their are no photos of this at all. The author of this post assumes all readers know what he's talking about.

Why is a string needed when the bike already comes with a large sheath for the cable to fit into that travels all the way to the bottom??

A video of this procedure would be nice. I will try to make one when my friend who is not a motorcycle mechanic tries to install it for me today.

He is a small engine mechanic so is better suited for this task than me, I am not mechanically unlined at all.


Hi Devil-Doc. I understand that it may be a little difficult to completely see how to do this in photos. Cable replacement is just kind of tedious, and a general pain in the butt. One important thing is to be patient. WingAdmin has posted some good pointers as far as what the possible problems that you could run into. Take photos of what it looks like before you begin, and then just take the old one off, install the new one, and follow the same route using the string method. I encourage you to remove the faulstank. Makes it much easier.

warnett
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Re: How to replace your clutch cable

Postby warnett » Fri Mar 15, 2013 5:50 pm

I'm a little confused about the 5/8 play. I checked mine and it doesn't have that much. Does it mean the cable would not be taught when at rest.??

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patbrandon1
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Re: How to replace your clutch cable

Postby patbrandon1 » Fri Mar 15, 2013 7:30 pm

warnett wrote:I'm a little confused about the 5/8 play. I checked mine and it doesn't have that much. Does it mean the cable would not be taught when at rest.??


Well, the suggested free play in the manual is 3/8 to 3/4. The reason is that you want to free play to allow the clutch to be completely engaged when the lever is released, but not so much free play that you won't fully disengage it when you pull on it. Watch the clutch actuator while you pull on the handle, and just make sure that the actuator bottoms out before the lever is completely out. Do you have adjuster nuts with allowable room to adjust at the actuator, like in the photo in step #6?

warnett
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Re: How to replace your clutch cable

Postby warnett » Sat Mar 16, 2013 11:36 am

Yes I do Pat. I think I understand that the actuator should be at complete rest when cable ie released. Its just seems like that much slak is a lot.




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