Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Forum : Kawasaki VN750 Forums - View Single Post - Coffee Grinder Clutch Noise
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 01-15-2006, 09:09 PM Thread Starter
Vulcan Verses
Join Date: Jan 2006
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From gYpSy's website: http://ourworld.cs.com/moonmist115/clutch.html

Believe it or not, it's not unusual for clutch slippage noise on the 750 *whenever* the motor oil is cold, or you leave from a standstill with alot (too much) throttle--more noticeable during cold weather months.

It almost sounds like a grunting noise and only last a brief instant. But if you "recently changed your clutch cable", perhaps the cable tension is too tight, not allowing the clutch to release fully. (incomplete clutch engagement). The service manual calls for 2-3mm of clutch freeplay at the hand lever, but I find a more accurate way is to reach down and feel the cable tension right at the throwout lever (down by the oil level sight glass) by tugging up on it. Pull back the rubber boot slightly (so as to not tear it), and there should be just the slightest amount of flex in the cable there without touching the hand lever, enough to pull it like a guitar string. If the cable won't budge or feels tight, then it's not releasing the clutch all the way to properly engage. If it feels very loose then you should tighten it up a bit. Reason for cold clutch slippage on 750's is due to the design of the clutch hub, which doesn't allow thick, cold oil to be flung off the discs completely to avoid slippage. It doesn't do any harm at all to the clutch, but sounds "annoying" to the rider.

Coffee grinder noise/Oil observation According to gYpSy's site, the problem is cold oil in the clutch that has to be squeezed out, which is what causes the noise and grabbiness. She describes a procedure to drill holes in the clutch hub that is supposed to alleviate this.


If you are going to take it apart to drill holes, might as well go ahead and do new clutch plates instead. I would say that if you only have the problem when cold, it's inherent with this model. I choose to live with it for now, as it doesn't really effect the operation after a few miles of riding, and I know how to deal with it. After that my clutch operation is smooth and trouble free. If you continue to have clutch problems after bike is warmed up, then yes, a clutch rebuild is in order. Or if you just want a better clutch. Mine is working OK for me now. She also has added a procedure to fix the shift shaft lost circlip problem from the outside without having to remove the engine. Also read her comments about the stator cover plate mod. Her website is a gold mine of information. If you haven't visited it, it is well worth your time to do so.

Folks, Regarding clutch chatter, Check out the files:
http://autos.groups.yahoo.com/group/VN750/files/ -> Clutch and drivetrain ->vn750 clutch chatter.pdf.

The Bike owner listed in there is Glenn Trippe, and I purchased his bike two years ago, and I still do NOT have clutch chatter and I use the Shell rotella -T non syn, The solution, the kevlar clutch disks that KM , Beavis and others mentioned. It's the clutch plates, not the oil folks. Different oils may mask the problem but the root cause is still there, the stock plates are poor. I talked to Glenn about this problem when I purchased the bike. Here is what he found when he took his clutch apart with his mechanic, and why he replaced it with the kevlar plates: The original disks were scalloped, - uneven wear. and that is what causes the chattering. Also when they tested the original clutch springs they found that they were not in tolerance with the specs. I believe he said that they were not the correct size. The replacement springs with the kevlar clutch kit were to spec and stronger springs. He did that replacement in 1999, the first year he had the bike, and it is now 6 years and 16,000 miles later and there is no chatter. By the way he was using mobile 1 synth in the bike. So the real fix to the problem is to replace the clutch plates. RB

I called my local dealer and complained about the cold clutch syndrome that alot if not most VN750 seem to suffer from. After some pushing and probing the service mgr admitted that Kawasaki did release a service bulletin to address this concern. While they have to remove the clutch pack to do service bulletin modification to the inner clutch hub and since the dealer is a Barnett clutch distributor I asked them to replace the clutch springs with Barnett's Heavy Duty springs and have Kawasaki ok the new springs under warranty. He said that he didn't forsee any problems with that. We'll see. I'll keep you posted.
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