Clutch Kits (Installation and info) - Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Forum : Kawasaki VN750 Forums
 
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post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old 01-15-2006, 08:21 PM Thread Starter
Vulcan Verses
 
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Clutch Kits (Installation and info)

I strongly reccomend the EBC Kevlar clutch KIT: http://tinyurl.com/e3x6h

DK seemed to have the best price on this, but you can get the item # info from the link and try elsewhere. You will also need a new clutch cover gasket..available at your dealer for about $8.00.

The job itself is in my opinion easy as cake. Some bikes may require the exhaust to be dropped down some to get to the bottom bolt on the cover..you shouldn't need to remove the pipes, just shove it down some. The stock pipes on my bike only required the use of a universal joint on my socket. I strongly suggest you use a 6 point socket (I think the size is 8mm) The 7 bolts are coated with red loctite and may take a little effort to break them loose...so no sence in compounding your problem by rounding off the heads.

Leave the bike on the sidestand and in neutral..you should not have a problem with oil dripping out. Photos here of what you will see: http://tinyurl.com/8d3rt Remove the 5 bolts in the hub, along with the springs. The clutch basket has an inner hub that is toothed. the plates are toothed to fit around this. Remove the plates..the friction plates and the "plain" ones. The last few may be hard to get to, I used a long pair of hemostats to yank them out, a hooked length of wire can be used also to coax them up front.

The Kit only contains the friction plates..these have what looks like tiny brake pads around their circumfrence. The plain plates you removed are used again..these normaly do not wear much..so there is no reason to replace them. To install the new plates, simply reverse the order as it were, substituting the new ones for the old. If you are worried about messing up the order, just remember that you start with a new plate and end with one.
Before installing any of the plates, coat them with engine oil. I just used a plastic oil drain pan to hold them and drizzled oil on them, smearing it around each plate just before installing. Put the hub back on and install the new springs instead of the old ones..a light coat of oil on them is fine. There likely is a torque spec for the bolts, but I just used my "feeling" on them. Do remember that they are small bolts going into cast metal, so do not "grunt" them in.

Before installing the cover, make sure all remains of the old gasket are gone, both on the cover and the engine case. Carefull work with a razor blade will get most of it off if some are stuck, clean the surfaces with brake cleaner and install the new gasket. The gasket has a tiny triangular arrow on it that points up.. Re-install the cover bolts and you are done.

I reccomend adjusting the free play at the clutch lever for MORE play. Later after a couple hundred miles you can re-adjust it if you see fit..but the new plates will "grab" much sooner and need that extra play. Do not be surprised if you kill the bike on your first attempt to ride ..your brain still has the old friction point learned and it will take a little concentration to learn the new one.

Quote:
Other notes... The red loctite they used will flake off some and fall into the hub area some..I used a tiny nozzle on a vacuum to suck them out..and used a wire brush from a 22 rifle cleaning kit to clean out the threads. I did not use any loctite on reassembly..but guess you can if you want to...you likely will never have to open the cover agian...as the clutch should be good for a few hundred thousand miles. Knifemaker
If you ordered the Kevlar "kit" it comes with springs: http://tinyurl.com/e3x6h but if just ordered clutch plates...you need to order the springs seperately. Of course you also need the clutch cover gasket, and if you think we will need to take off or move your exhaust you might want to bring the neccessary gaskets. The stock pipes only require removing the right heat shield..no gaskets needed there.... KM Photos of the work at: http://tinyurl.com/8d3rt

Taking the plates off can be tricky as they are hard to get a hold of. I used a small pair of hemostats..but a more useful tool can be made by using two thin strips of metal with a slight shallow hook or bend at the end. ( cut a few 1/2" strips with some heavy shears off an aluminum can and form a 1/8" bend at the end) use these on either side of a plate to pull it out. Some exhausts it seem may be more in the way than mine. At the Gathering when we did Jims bike, we had to unbolt his right head pipe and take out the rear exhaust bolt. You want a good grip on that lower cover bolt so you do not strip it...so loosen or remove what you have to. The new gasket has an arrow on it that should point up..make sure it is positioned right before installing the cover back on. You should loosen the adjustment of the cable when your done so you have about 1/8 of an inch gap between the lever and its mount.Turn the handlebars from lock to lock to make sure it does not decrease this. Try and take it easy the first 50 miles so the new plates can "set" some. You do not need to drain the oil to do this job if you have the bike on the sidestand. KM


Beavis had mentioned that his EBC clutch had a small tag that read " Do not use synthetic oils with these plates"..I contacted EBC Tech+Racing and here is their reply:


Quote:
Eric,

Our label on our EBC Clutch Kit's say "Do NOT use Synthetic Oil" !

I will tell you go ahead and use a major named motorcycle synthetic oil ( like Mobile 1, Castrol, Silkolene Pro 4, Maxima, etc ) and you will be OK..

If not, I will personally send you a new EBC Kevlar Clutch, but I have been telling our US EBC Kevlar Clutch customer's this for over 4 years now, and have yet to replace a clutch because "it stopped working when I changed to synthetic oil" !


The reason for the label on our EBC Clutch Kit Packaging is we do not test with all the synthetic oil's out on the market, so we are trying to "cover out butt's" incase a customer uses an "off brand" of lower quality automotive synthetic oil like Torque-O, Red Line, etc. !

I have had a few customer's, mostly drag racer's, try to cheat me out of a free clutch because they fried it racing and then tried to use the " I just changed to synthetic oil and my clutch burnt up" excuse, but I am a trusting guy, and most Vulcan rider's do not race there bike's anyway !!

Ride SAFE !!

Garry Gallagher
EBC Brakes US Tech & Racing
Phone (425) 485-7610
Fax (425) 486-3001
EBC Web Site - www.ebcbrakes.com
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post #2 of 2 (permalink) Old 01-15-2006, 08:21 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
This is my contribution to our group.

My brother and I own a automotive transmission shop in Newberg, Oregon. One of my venders can get after market clutch parts. I can buy these parts @ cost and in turn sell them cheaper to you.

These frictions are not Kevlar they are Alto Red racing frictions. I don't recommend Kevlar, Kevlar is a very harsh material and it will not slip even when you want it to and it will distroy your steel plates, you want a friction that has greater holding power but will allow minor slippage when you want it. The Red frictions disapate heat alot better then Kevlar as well. You know the walrus noise that alot of people have taking off first thing when the engine is cold? well thats because the friction plates are not slipping and allowing a smooth engagement. There are many people who complain of a no slipping engagement after installing Kevlar lined frictions. These frictions will me and exceed all your needs. PERIOD!!

Alto Red frictions they are classed as high performance, but they work great under regular use.

The frictions come in two different thickness they are listed below, you'll need to measure your old ones to find out which ones you'll need.

1986 - 2003
Alto Red Racing Frictions
.098 thick/per friction @ 8 frictions per kit
$54.48 kit

1986 - 2003
Alto Red Racing Frictions
.118 thick/per friction @ 8 frictions per kit
$55.76 kit

My vender is finding out whether 2004-2005 are the same size.

Thanks guys,
Ronny Van Zant
Sure Shift Technologies
Newberg, Oregon
RE: the above and clutch disks: Alto Red Racing frictions are the top choice in car transmissions for racing. But the use of hardend steel plates is also reccomended. The "disadvantages" of Kevlar that he mentions are the exact reasons I like it. Slippage is important when you are trying to launch a 3 thousand pound machine down a dragstrip, but in everyday use on a 65 horsepower 500 lb bike it may not be. From my standpoint, a clutch that resists slipping and tends to grab hard is preferable. I can shift from 3rd to 4th in 0.12 seconds, and expect at 0.13 seconds the power to be delivered to the wheel without any "slipping"...and not incounter any quirks while I pour on the gas. Wet clutches use engine oil to lubricate , which has diffrent lubrication propertied than transmission oil. I am not saying the Alto clutches would not work in our bikes..but the demands on the clutch are not as intense as they are in a racing car. Kevlar may cause more wear on the steel plates, but given the lifespan of them and the amount of stress they have to endure in a 65 horsepower machine, I doubt that is much of an issue , unless you are significantly mean to your clutch. I do not sell either clutch material and would like to hear more about the actual constuction of the Alto plates, but so far...I have been extremely pleased with the Kevlar units I installed. KM

The Barnett spring kit number for the VN750 is MT-55-5 Hope that helps.
After pressing the service "mangler" at my local stealership to call Kawasaki for authorization to repair my clutch, they told him to do what he said what Kawasaki wouldn't authorize him to do. Kawasaki told him to drill holes in the bottom of the splines of the clutch inner hub, per the info that I printed from the "FILES" of this forum. While they had the clutch apart, I furnished for them to install, Barnett clutch springs($13.00) and Alto Red Line frictions($60.00 with shipping) that I got from one of our own member, Ronny Van Zant. The new clutch is much smoother, engages sooner than the stock clutch and is quieter than a church mouse. The $73.00 that I spent is worth it to me not hear/feel that grabbing walrus. Warranty labor to Kawasaki $131.10. Thanks to all who provided info to help me correct this concern.
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