Getting stuck in 5th gear


Information and questions on GL1500 Goldwings (1988-2000)
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aj1500
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96 Aspy 1500 W Lehmann trike

Getting stuck in 5th gear

Post by aj1500 »



I have a strange situation with my wife's trike. the bike is a 96 1500 with only 50K miles. it sat for a long time before I bought it and brought it back to life.
it just started doing this and has now done it 3 times in the last 2 times it was ridden. she can be riding along and when she goes to slow down and downshift it won't, the shift lever is sort of jammed for lack of a better way to describe it. the first time we were coming back from a ride and she stopped in 5th I went to the bike and it wouldn't shift. I shut it off rocked it a little and it shifted fine
then it did it again yesterday 2 times within minutes of each other but then didn't do it again the rest of the ride . both times she was able to get it going without having to come to a stop first. I have read of issues over the years, mostly about loosing 4th gear but I don't recall ever reading about them getting stuck in fifth. the trike does have heel-toe shifter and I have inspected all the linkage and everything is in good condition and not sloppy at all. it shifts smooth and is not clunky, it has only been maybe 1K miles since it's last oil change but I'm thinking seafoam then another change. Any ideas would be welcome.


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AZgl1800
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Re: Getting stuck in 5th gear

Post by AZgl1800 »

I agree,
4 oz SeaFoam in the crankcase and ride it 100+ miles and do an oil/filter change again.

Rotella T6 5w40 would be a good choice, price is right at $22/gal and it made a lot of difference in shifting on my bike, and a lot of others who agree with me.

Once you start using that oil, it won't sludge up ever again.
~John

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aj1500
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Re: Getting stuck in 5th gear

Post by aj1500 »

I do use Rotella and have for years. I did check the oil in her bike and air in tires before we rode. the oil still looked new but I can't help thinking that maybe there is some hidden sludge in there from it sitting for years before I got it
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MikeB
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Re: Getting stuck in 5th gear

Post by MikeB »

It is a Trike correct? Does it have a Heel - Toe shifter? You may just need to clean and lubricate the Heel - Toe shifter linkages.
MikeB
1998 - GL1500 w/184,500 miles ~ 2017 - GL1800 w/13000 miles
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Rambozo
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Re: Getting stuck in 5th gear

Post by Rambozo »

If possible you might want to add the shifter brace.
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blupupher
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Re: Getting stuck in 5th gear

Post by blupupher »

MikeB wrote: Thu May 06, 2021 11:17 am It is a Trike correct? Does it have a Heel - Toe shifter? You may just need to clean and lubricate the Heel - Toe shifter linkages.
Rambozo wrote: Thu May 06, 2021 11:54 am If possible you might want to add the shifter brace.
I am leaning toward this as well, not the oil.
It sounds more like something to do with the linkage binding, and if you have a heel toe without a shifter brace, even more so.
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aj1500
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Re: Getting stuck in 5th gear

Post by aj1500 »

I will say I have a 97 with a sidecar on it with the same heel toe shifter set up without the shifter brace, has been on it since 05 and the only issue I have is the bushings are getting worn. I'm not ruling out the shifter set up by any means, I will be looking it over carefully this weekend. I just find it odd that it just started doing it and not every time your in fifth gear.
Thanks for the suggestions so far. I'll post back once I get it figured out
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Re: Getting stuck in 5th gear

Post by aj1500 »

well I'm 99% sure I got it fixed. we haven't driven it yet to verify but I'm sure I got it. turns out it was the shifter, the front knuckle was binding badly when downshifting. I had installed the set up right after I bought the trike, I figured because it had just been removed from a 1500 it was set up right, and in all fairness it has been working great until now. but I guess it takes a little longer stroke to get it out of fifth gear so it was just shy of shifting before the rod and knuckle jammed together, I moved it 3 splines and now it clicks very smooth both directions
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Re: Getting stuck in 5th gear

Post by MikeB »

That's great. Thanks for coming back and letting us know what the fix was. That is how we all learn.
MikeB
1998 - GL1500 w/184,500 miles ~ 2017 - GL1800 w/13000 miles
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aj1500
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Re: Getting stuck in 5th gear

Post by aj1500 »

well it looks like I was wrong, it is still getting stuck in 5th gear sometimes. it's weird it only does it sometimes
there is no telling when it might do it, sometimes she can get it to downshift after working it a little and other times we have to stop. I'm not sure what to think at this point. the bike only has 50K on it. it sat for a long time and when it was ridden it was only a few miles at a time so I find it hard to imagine it's transmission failure
I guess I'll keep investigating the linkage. the other odd thing is it only does it in fifth gear. she can keep it in forth on lower speed roads and it doesn't do it.
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Re: Getting stuck in 5th gear

Post by Rambozo »

How about putting the stock shifter back on to see if that eliminates the problem.
Do you have a shifter brace? The 1500 is not a great setup even when stock because the shaft moves in an arc instead of rotating like most bikes. So any additional parts need to be able to work with that.
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blupupher
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Re: Getting stuck in 5th gear

Post by blupupher »

Rambozo wrote: Sun May 16, 2021 6:36 am How about putting the stock shifter back on to see if that eliminates the problem.
Do you have a shifter brace? The 1500 is not a great setup even when stock because the shaft moves in an arc instead of rotating like most bikes. So any additional parts need to be able to work with that.
I agree with this. Go back to stock, get a shifter brace and see what it does.

I have never heard of any issues with this transmission getting stuck in 5th.

How old is the heel toe shifter? They can wear out over time.

Another thing is how is your wife shifting?
You said she came to a stop and was in 5th gear? Does she do this often? That could be the issue right there, maybe 5th gear needs some internal inertia to shift, and being at a stop does not allow it?
Also, is she riding with her foot on the shifter while just cruising around? She needs to only have her foot on the shifter when shifting. The heel toe should not be used as a foot rest.
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aj1500
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Re: Getting stuck in 5th gear

Post by aj1500 »

the bike came with boards and a heel toe shifter but it was the biggest piece of crap I have ever seen in my life so I replaced them with a nice set of Markland boards that are in very good condition. as to her stopping in 5th that was because it wouldn't down shift and I told her to bring it to a stop behind me so I could take a look at it. when I walked to it it was like it was jammed from going forward, you could shift it towards 5th and it would get full travel but it would move trying to downshift. I shut it off and rocked the bike a little and it shifted right out smooth as ever. we rode again today, the second time she went to downshift it did it again, I told her accel a little and try it again and that worked, then it never did it again the rest of the day. now I'm wondering if she isn't getting it fully locked into fifth gear sometimes and it just sort of locked on the edge of the cog. I'm going to ride it some and see if it happens to me then decide what direction to go
non of this is making any sense
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Re: Getting stuck in 5th gear

Post by terryt »

If you have a standard gear shift. take the toe and heel off and try it with the standard setup
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Re: Getting stuck in 5th gear

Post by MikeB »

Heel-toe shifters are not easy to set up so that they do not jam. It takes time and more patience than I have ever had. If you like the idea of the heel-toe shifter, you will get it accomplished. It will just take you some experimentation.
MikeB
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aj1500
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Re: Getting stuck in 5th gear

Post by aj1500 »

so I drove the trike for 2 days and have a couple things I found. 1 it will almost never get stuck in 5th as long as you don't let it slow down more than 40 mph before shifting into 4th
second if it does get stuck you can nail the throttle for just a second and then it will down shift like normal. I added some seafoam and ran it just over 100 miles, I will change the oil this coming weekend and then try it again, but I think there is an issue with fifth gear, maybe the shift fork is ever so slightly bent or the gear is worn and it is kind of floating out some, that could explain the acceleration pulling it back in place to allow it to shift when I binds up. I am going to put a clean rag under the drain and see if I find any particles in the oil


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