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Bike not staring and shifting gears

Discussion in 'XJ Technical Chat' started by Magu, Sep 29, 2015.

  1. Magu

    Magu New Member

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    Hi there,

    I am new to this XJBikes community but saw that I could get some good info so I thought I should sign up. So let me get to the point..

    I recently bought an XJ650 and this week I have changed the handlebars to clubman/Ace ones. I am not that practical but always wanted to try to amend and fix things myself. As far as dismantling and installing the new handlebar everything seemed to work quite smoothly. The problem I am now facing is starting the bike and shifting gears. Sometimes the gears are all shifting correctly and sometimes they don't - feels like they only go up to second or third gear only.

    I researched a bit and found that it could be the clutch safety switch. Today I adjusted the clutch cable but still didn't get all the gears shifting correctly and still didn't start - tried both in neutral and in gear pulling the clutch. Can somebody help me out here?

    Thanks,
    Mike
     
  2. MN-Maxims

    MN-Maxims St. Paul Minnesota

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    Did everything work right before you switched the handle bars? If so could you have re routed the clutch cable somehow to make it bind up. Also did you lube the clutch cable?
     
  3. Magu

    Magu New Member

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    Thanks for the reply.

    Yes everything was working fine before I changed them. I didn't lube the clutch cable but I did adjust it and it feels like it is working ok on both ends. Could this prevent the bike starting?
     
  4. Stumplifter

    Stumplifter Well-Known Member

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    It wasn't just the clutch cable that transitioned to the new handle bars. . . .

    Did you set the clutch lever free play to the manual specs?
     
  5. Rooster53

    Rooster53 Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    The early 650's the starter button switch gets ground from the handlebars instead of a separate ground wire as was done on the later models. If the starter is not engaging, then make sure the bars you installed are providing the necessary ground for the starter button switch.
     
  6. rocs82650

    rocs82650 Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    +1 what he ^ said.

    Gary H.
     
  7. Magu

    Magu New Member

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    Hey guys thanks for your interest!

    To start off with it's a 1981 XJ650 ( one in my photo). I did not set the clutch lever free play to manual specs but adjusted it again today and the bike actually started. I left it running a bit then I tried to put it into first gear and the engine kind of slowed down until it stopped. I tried to start it again on neutral and again didn't start. How can I find out if the starter button is getting enough ground from the handlebars? If this is the case that it is not getting enough ground, what do I do next?

    Thanks a lot!
     
  8. chacal

    chacal Moderator Moderator Supporting Vendor Premium Member

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    Get a long enough piece of jumper wire and attach one end to the neg battery terminal and the other end to the control switch (under one of the control switch housing screws would be ideal) and see if it changes anything.

    The shorter handlebars will probably require you to use shorter cables (clutch, choke, maybe throttle, too). The motion of the lever might be/is being translated into "cable movement/wiggle" rather than into "pulling on the clutch arm and releasing the clutch discs".
     
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  9. jayrodoh

    jayrodoh YimYam Premium Member

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    Are the new bars painted or chromed? If painted, you need to make sure there is clean contact under the caps on the top triple clamp. Try chacals wire test to confirm if you have a ground issue. If that works, then you need to sort out the ground issue. If not, then you have another issue within the starting safety circuit (relay, switches, wires, etc.). The FSM has a troubleshooting procedure.
     
  10. Magu

    Magu New Member

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    The handlebars are painted black in fact. I will definitely check out this ground issue and see where I can proceed from there. Regarding the clutch, is seeing the clutch arm (on the outside - not the hand lever end, the bottom end) pulling up enough to confirm it's working fine or would I have to check it out from inside? Also, could it be that the gears aren't shifting correctly because the bike is not running? I'll get back to you guys with updates in case.

    Thanks again for all the advice!
    Mike
     
  11. quebecois59

    quebecois59 Well-Known Member

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    I seem to remember there is a punch mark on the clutch arm pivot down there, it is important to put it in the right place. I should have a picture of that, wait a minute...

    clutch lever.jpg

    This one was on my Maxim-X, I don't know if yours is the same. I also ermember that it took a good amount of brute force to bring the lever up at to catch the end of the cable.
     
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2015
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  12. quebecois59

    quebecois59 Well-Known Member

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    P3080054.JPG

    That one is on the Seca900, punch mark on the pivot is harder to see.
     
  13. rocs82650

    rocs82650 Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    Use a zip tie to hold the clutch handle in then see if the marks align. If they don't there is a technique to do so. It will give the clutch shaft complete throw out. Let us know.

    Gary H.
     
  14. jayrodoh

    jayrodoh YimYam Premium Member

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    It is hard if not impossible to shift a bike properly that is not running or moving in some way.

    I would say that is your issue then. You need to remove the paint at the control and the triple clamp, OR run a ground wire.
     
  15. rocs82650

    rocs82650 Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    If all is good put bike in neutral on center stand while rocking the rear wheel should shift through gears easily.

    Gary H.
     
  16. Magu

    Magu New Member

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    Hey Guys,

    Happy to say the bike is running fine now. The issue with starting the bike was in fact the ground issue you mentioned. Thanks a lot for the heads up! I ran a ground wire instead scratching the paint under triple camp. Bike was then starting normally. As for the clutch and gears issue it was just the fact that the bike was not moving..

    Thanks again for your very useful help everyone!!

    Mike
     
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  17. cruiserlover

    cruiserlover Active Member Premium Member

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    I WILL keep on messing with this.Thanks everyone.The kid I bought it from put it on the centerstand,started the bike,demonstrated it through all the gears.Its just me.I took his drag bars off because there was no way to get the mastercylinder for the brakes level with the configuration of the handlebars plus they were too low for me.I had to slip off all the controls and levers to mount the ugly buckhorns.At least the MC is useable and fillable.Back to the clutch- i never should have loosened anything, it was shifting fine till I started loosening things.The buckhorns are so much taller and wider I had to do a lot of manipulating to get the controls to slide over them.Once on they were fine. The throttle cable problem was simple.I just hooked it up once i realized where it connected.This clutch cable has too many places to turn and adjust. It will seem simple once I get it right.
     

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