Getting low gear


Information and questions on GL1800 Goldwings (2001-2017)
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Luvenet47
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Getting low gear

Post by Luvenet47 »



I've had my '07 GL1800 for 3 years and put on over 10,000 miles. Getting first gear has always been a problem. The throw is only about an inch or less. I can downshift through the gears with a little throttle in between and everything is smooth and fine until I get to first. The dang thing just doesn't want to get first. This is gets dangerous when I'm at an intersection and think I have it until I try to take off and discover the damn thing is in second - especially on an upgrade. Please don't tell me how to shift. That's not the problem. Between driving farm tractor since I was 8 and logging more than 1.75 million miles in 18 wheelers I have the shifting down.
This thing just won't go into low gear! Is this a serious tranny problem? Is it common? The clutch is fine. So you 1800 mechanics, what's up with my GL?
:roll:
Donnie


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Re: Getting low gear

Post by WingAdmin »

A lot of the time this is caused by the clutch not declutching enough. It's fine for shifting from gear to gear where the speed differential between the engine and the transmission is small, but when the output portion of the transmission is stopped and the input is turning at engine speed, it can have difficulties.

There can be a few causes for this:

- worn pivot bushing in the clutch lever, so the clutch master cylinder piston rod isn't being pushed in far enough. Eventually this can wear through far enough that it can punch a hole right in the lever. This is by far the most common cause.

- Air in the clutch line

- Clutch worn enough that there are pieces in between the friction discs, partially engaging the clutch when you have pulled the lever in.

It can also be caused by a worn shift fork, if the clutch checks out.
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Re: Getting low gear

Post by MikeB »

It can also be caused by an oversize hand grip like a Kuryakyn. It will prevent the clutch lever from pulling all the way through its full travel.

Anther possibility is having an after-market clutch lever.

Maybe try setting the adjustment on the clutch lever to 1 instead of a higher number to give it more travel from clutch engaged to clutch released.
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Re: Getting low gear

Post by Red Ron »

I am going to tell what I do that helps. I am NOT telling you to do this because you asked us not to tell you how to shift. I simply blip the throttle and raise the RPM's a little and it drops into 1st a lot easier. Also if I am on flat ground I have no problem, and had just soon take off in 2nd as 1st. Also how many total miles are on the bike? You say that you have only put 10,000 miles on it in 3 years so you are not wearing out the tranny but how many total miles are on the bike. Also (and I really hate to open a can of worms :o ) but which oil are you using?
Luvenet47
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Re: Getting low gear

Post by Luvenet47 »

I do rev the engine between gears when downshifting to match the engine rps with the axel rpms. The adjustable shift lever is set at 1 for maximum throw. Because it had 34k on it when I bought it I can't be sure the original owner knew how to shift gently.
I removed the heal/toe shifter and put a light dab of silicone grease on the shift rod rubber and on the fork and it helped a lot with shifting. I'm suprised how much difference that little bit of lube made in overall shifting.
I'm going to change my oil again and use 10w-30 synthetic this time. Might help the clutches slide more smoothly. Last oil vhange I used 10-40 on an old timers advice but it might be a little too thick. (seniority doesn't always guarantee wisdom) But I am not above suggestion. I'm leaning a little toward an internal problem.
Thanks for all the good feedback!
🤛
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Re: Getting low gear

Post by topgun »

Gently and goldwing shifts are an oxymoron
Also don't shift 2 to first after you've come to a stop if that's the case
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Re: Getting low gear

Post by Luvenet47 »

So slam-dunk is the norm, eh? ;)
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Re: Getting low gear

Post by topgun »

Just saying that a wimpy, little baby, shift will not be a good one; results in ghost shift or false neutral.
any number of posts about preload the lever, firm, decisive, shift works best
and it still won't CLUNK as bad as a yami or harley in any direction

and revving the engine only helps smooth clutch engagement after the downshift as there isn't really any neutral to
double clutch thru and match speeds as a OTR driver would be good at
Luvenet47
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Re: Getting low gear

Post by Luvenet47 »

Good advice. When I drove18 I only used the clutch to start and stop. All the gears in between were done without using the clutch so shifting gently was not only a skill but a must, anything less could drop the tranny. But back to the original problem, no matter how I shift, sometimes even punching it,1st is a pisser. My Sportster never shifted like that.
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Re: Getting low gear

Post by detdrbuzzard »

is the clutch fluid getting old or low
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Luvenet47
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Re: Getting low gear

Post by Luvenet47 »

No. Flushed and bled the clutch. I'm pretty sure it's something internal. It's done that since I bought it 3 yrs. ago. Works but sometimes annoying. Lubing the external rubber bushing and fork on the heel/toe shifter made quite a difference.
BY THE WAY YA'LL: if you already haven't picked up on it, I'm still figuring out how to use this site. So if anyone posts something and I don't respond it's probably because I screwed up trying to. :D
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Re: Getting low gear

Post by Viking »

Luvenet47 wrote: Wed Sep 06, 2017 6:46 am No. Flushed and bled the clutch. I'm pretty sure it's something internal. It's done that since I bought it 3 yrs. ago. Works but sometimes annoying. Lubing the external rubber bushing and fork on the heel/toe shifter made quite a difference.
BY THE WAY YA'LL: if you already haven't picked up on it, I'm still figuring out how to use this site. So if anyone posts something and I don't respond it's probably because I screwed up trying to. :D
One thing I might do - if'n it was me - would be to get rid of that heel/toe shifter. It was a fine shift system for my old shovelhead Harley, but it does not really work as well in shifting a Goldwing. Now if you have floorboards, you may be stuck with it, but I would think that part of your problem just might be that heel/toe shifter. I did try floorboards and that heel/toe, but did not keep them for more than about three days. My system was Kuryakyn and it cost a bundle, about a third of which I lost when reselling the kit. I admit, I did not get rid of it because of the shifter, but because my legs did not like having to get around the floorboards, which sit a lot further back than they do on Harleys. With a trike tho, you would not have that problem.
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Luvenet47
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Re: Getting low gear

Post by Luvenet47 »

Appreciate the feedback. Will check out cost and what all is involved to change it over.
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Re: Getting low gear

Post by topgun »

Visit your local dealers and talk to one of the techs
They might have some take offs they'd be glad to pass on.
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Re: Getting low gear

Post by MikeB »

Hopefully damage to the shift fork has not already been done.
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Luvenet47
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Re: Getting low gear

Post by Luvenet47 »

Its not real bad so I'm not expecting any serious damage. It's more annoying at this point than anything else. Gonna go with it for now. I don't think it'll leave me sitting anywhere.
Donnie (the professor) 😏
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Re: Getting low gear

Post by Luvenet47 »

Good idea. I'll check with the guy who did the (Roadsmith) conversion. He's a pretty good guy HOWEVER, there's a lot of backlash in the diff. but he says it's within specks. Don't have any way to confirm that. The Roadsmith paperwork said they have a million mile warrenty on the deiveline...would be nice if it's true.


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