clutch will not engage - Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Forum : Kawasaki VN750 Forums
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-08-2013, 10:30 PM Thread Starter
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clutch will not engage

I have a 1986 Vulcan and the clutch will not engage to shift into the gears. I replaced the cable thinking it was the cable but that did not fix the problem. So I was wondering if there are any adjustments inside the transmission to fix this problem. If so your help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-08-2013, 10:45 PM
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Sp you're saying you can start the bike, it runs fine....but you can not shift out of neutral?

Are you sure it's the clutch? Or is it possible the shifter is not working?

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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-08-2013, 10:54 PM Thread Starter
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Ya you can start it up and runs just can shift out of neutral.
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-08-2013, 10:56 PM Thread Starter
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and the bike will jump if you try to shift the bike out of neutral
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-08-2013, 11:35 PM
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If the clutch cable is adjusted correctly, then it's possible the clutch plates are just stuck. Did you get the bike this way or is something that just happened to a previously working bike?

Have you recently changed the oil?

I'd try letting the bike warm up well and pump the clutch lever a few dozen times while its running...(can you feel the clutch springs pulling back on the lever?)
If you can't break the clutch free you might have to take it apart to see what's happening .....

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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-09-2013, 10:57 AM
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does it stall if you try to put into gear??

Mine has a little drag on the clutch, and will cause a very small lurch forward, with accompaning clunk from the gears. and by very small I mean it dont even try to move the bike.
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-13-2013, 09:42 PM
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Not sure what you are saying. If you cannot shift into gear, it would seem the clutch is not disengaging at least not all the way. If the clutch is not engaging (meaning you could sit there with the bike in gear, clutch out, and it won't move, that is a whole different problem. Have you tried to shift into gear with the engine off by rocking the bike back and forth. You can only shift into first this way on the Vulcan, because of it's very annoying positive neutral finder.

There are 3 possible adjustments on the clutch outside the engine. 2 are in the cable, it can be adjusted at the lever, and also down by the frame, close to where the air filter housing is. The third thing that can be adjusted is the thing the bottom end of the cable attaches to. It is attached to a splined shaft, like the shifter, and you can remove the clamp bolt, then remove the lever/arm, and move it one spline is either direction. It is not supposed to be moved, it has marks that are supposed to line up. But that doesn't mean someone hasn't moved it at some point.

If you cannot get the transmission into gear even with the engine off, then it is likely there is a problem with the shifter mechanism. Also make sure the clutch cable is secured in the bracket on the engine just a few inches forward of where the lower end attaches to the release arm.

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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-11-2019, 02:15 PM
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I have a 1998 Kawasaki Vulcan 1500. The clutch will not engage. It will shift into first but nothing, whether running or not. I took the slave cylinder off and no change, I then took the oil filler cap off and pushed the clutch push rod back and started the bike put it in gear without using clutch, bike lurched forward a very little bit and nothing. Any ideas?
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 07-11-2019, 05:41 PM
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Sounds like maybe the clutch is toast, but not knowing that engine, hard to say for sure.

Does the oil have a strong burned smell? Does your engine have a debris screen for the oil? Any debris in it?

Curious about pushing the clutch rod back by hand. Seems like there should be strong spring tension pushing it back already. Broken clutch basket? Or maybe the clutch pack is so worn, there's no tension from the springs on the basket?

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