Clutch stuck OPEN not engaged


Information and questions on GL1000 Goldwings (1975-1979)
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77RedandWhite
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Joined: Sun May 24, 2020 3:22 pm
Location: York, PA
Motorcycle: 1977 GL1000
1980 CB650 SOLD

Clutch stuck OPEN not engaged

Post by 77RedandWhite »



77 Gl1000, took me 7 years to get it running right. Riding home from an errand, maybe 15 minutes hard riding up there, highway, quick stop in, and then back on the highway straight into accident traffic backup. Started using the clutch every ten feet as people were being stupid trying to get around in the only open left lane. Suddenly I pulled in the clutch, and when I released it the cable came loose. Handle flopping around, engine rpm doing nothing to affect movement. Killed it, hopped off, pushed it off to the side. No prior noises or weird riding feeling. Did not hear anything break, but its a big bike and I was in traffic with a semi idling to my side.

It acts like it's in neutral all the time, even though it's in gear and changes gears just fine. The basket was pulled into the "disengage" and then it froze. Opening up the rear clutch cover today it appears that the clutch lever under the rear cover is stuck in the open position. Cable is free and clear, return spring (that I already ordered in the hopes of that being 45 years old and giving out) is fine. But the lever is stuck "up". Tried light percussive maintenance, light wiggling with a screw driver, and got no response.
Is there something in there that could catastrophically fail and jam the basket after I pulled the clutch in?

Any ideas? If I pull the stock H muffler for access, can I get the next cover off over the end of the basket?


Naked 77 Wing
80 CB 650, built from boxes of parts SOLD
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cfairweather
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Re: Clutch stuck OPEN not engaged

Post by cfairweather »

You can replace the clutch parts without removing the engine. Get access to the clutch and remove the cover. Something is jammed and I think it might be one of the ball bearings in the cover. Remove that cover and take a look.
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77RedandWhite
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Location: York, PA
Motorcycle: 1977 GL1000
1980 CB650 SOLD

Re: Clutch stuck OPEN not engaged

Post by 77RedandWhite »

Back to make sure this doesn't become another niche thread with no answer.

In case anyone else ever needs this, Cfair is basically correct. When we rebuilt then engine or clutch the last time, we used a small amount of gasket sealer around the cover. Don't remember why, probably we were in a hurry to put it back together. We also hurried the sealer and didn't follow the directions... It appears that we squeezed out 99% of the rtv from the joint, and a lot of it ended up on the inside. We cleaned out a lot of rubber strings and some chunks that were in the ball bearings. Def not a good look for someone that spent 7 years putting the bike back together. Oops.
So yeah, we took the rear clutch arm cover off, took the cover under that off, and then we cleaned everything out. As long as we were in there we did an oil/filter change. Cleared everything right up... it also solved my inability to shift into neutral from first or second, and smoothed out all my shifts. So there was grit in there long before the rtv, because the bike has never shifted this easily. Another mystery solved!
Naked 77 Wing
80 CB 650, built from boxes of parts SOLD
Motorcycles. Snowboarding. Paintball. 3D printing. Cosplay. Warhammer 40k. Tabletop Gaming.
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WingAdmin
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Re: Clutch stuck OPEN not engaged

Post by WingAdmin »

Ouch. Yeah, RTV is nasty like that. When I replaced the cam plugs on my wife's PC800, you had to RTV the valve covers back on, and you better believe I spent a lot of time making sure there was JUST enough RTV in there to seal, and nothing more. All it takes is one bit of RTV clogging an oil passage to scrap an engine.
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tcepilot
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Motorcycle: 1978 Gl1000

Re: Clutch stuck OPEN not engaged

Post by tcepilot »

I just posted about this issue. I solved mine by properly adjusting the arm and cable. Previous owner or someone didn’t have the cable adjusted right, especially at the arm. All good now


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