oil leaks at shifter - Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Forum : Kawasaki VN750 Forums
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 12-17-2011, 12:54 AM Thread Starter
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oil leaks at shifter

Just traded an 83 Honda Shadow for a 85 VN750, but haven't fired it up yet. It leaks oil where the rod that the shifter lever is bolted to exits the engine. Is this a quick fix or does it require dismantling the engine? Also, when I work the shift lever with my foot, it only goes into two positions, lifting it up lets the bike roll (I assume neutral) but no matter how many times I rock the bike back and forth it only clicks down one time. I don't know where to start ... is this a transmission problem? Any suggestions what I should do?
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 12-17-2011, 02:13 AM
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Sounds like the trans and auto-neutral finder are working. pushing down engages first gear but without the engine running it will only go to neutral when lifted. As for the seal, not having done it myself, I don't think it's too big of a job. I'm sure someone who has been there will correct me but it could be as simple as taking off the shifter arm and pulling/replacing the seal. at most you would have to pull the case side which calls for engine removal or at least tilting in the frame, niether of which is too terribly difficult.
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 12-17-2011, 11:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dragon159 View Post
As for the seal, not having done it myself, I don't think it's too big of a job. I'm sure someone who has been there will correct me but it could be as simple as taking off the shifter arm and pulling/replacing the seal.
Yep. Punch a couple holes opposite each other with an awl, a couple sheetmetal screws, and pry it out. Use a washer under a deep socket big enuff to fit over the shift shaft, and tap the new seal in with a few medium taps of a hammer.

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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 12-18-2011, 12:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gth759k View Post
Just traded an 83 Honda Shadow for a 85 VN750, but haven't fired it up yet. It leaks oil where the rod that the shifter lever is bolted to exits the engine. Is this a quick fix or does it require dismantling the engine? Also, when I work the shift lever with my foot, it only goes into two positions, lifting it up lets the bike roll (I assume neutral) but no matter how many times I rock the bike back and forth it only clicks down one time. I don't know where to start ... is this a transmission problem? Any suggestions what I should do?
Welcome. Are you in the U.S.? If so, the '85 is a 700, not a 750. The '85 is easy to spot, it is the only year where the engine was painted black in the U.S. I believe the shifter seal is the same though. Only a few top end parts and an internal shift rod are different.

I see you have already run into Kawasaki's "positive neutral finder" Annoying little devil isn't it? And it serves absolutely no purpose for a rider with enough skill to ride on the street. They still make the blasted things.

While you are checking the shifter, check the shaft end play. Due to a poor design, many bikes that fell over onto the shifter broke something inside the engine, and caused the shaft to have a LOT of end play, meaning you can push it in and pull it out quite a bit. Hopefully you do not have this problem, but if you do, the standard fix has been to remove the shifter, and put a spacer or stack of washers between the shifter and the case to hold the shaft all the way out, which is it's correct position. It seems to work ok that way.

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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 12-18-2011, 02:04 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks you guys. This is only my second bike, so i still have lots to learn. I found out my bike is indeed a VN700 and once I got it on the road, the positive neutral finder was obviously nothing wrong with the bike, just the design. Thanks again.
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