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Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Chandler, Arizona
It sounds like 2 different problems. It is not that uncommon for the shifter shaft to slide in and out quite a bit, especially if the bike has been dropped on the shifter. Something breaks inside the engine that allows the shaft to move in and out like that. Out is the proper position for it, and many people just install a spacer between the shifter and the case to hold it in that position. Pull the shifter all the way out, and see if it still has several inches of play in it. If so, you likely have a far more serious problem. There is a linkage rod inside the case that could have broken or come loose. Fixing it requires a complete engine teardown and splitting the cases. I hope that isn't it.
Your bike may have been the victim of a first time rider, or a bike abuser. Some riders will just stomp on the shifter, and that will usually cause serious internal damage. The shifting mechanism is a pretty delicate thing on most bikes.
I am a motorcyclist, NOT a biker.
1997 Vulcan 750, purchased about a week ago
2006 Sportster 1200 Low
2013 Royal Enfield Bullet 500, converted to carb
2001 Yamaha XT225, heavily modified
2004 Honda Rebel 250
1979 Vespa P200E
2002 Vulcan 750 parts bike
1994 Yamaha XT225 parts bike