Hard Starting in First Gear

Discussion in 'Transmission' started by bfmitch, May 20, 2009.

  1. bfmitch

    bfmitch Active Member

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    My son has an '08 Dyna Super Glide with about 12K miles on it. He bought it from a dealer with about 10K miles on it.

    We all know that it's best to put it in neutral and then pull in the clutch when starting the motor. However, there are times (like stalling when starting up at a traffic light) when it's great to just pull in the clutch and hit the starter button.

    He can't do that with his. It acts almost like it is in gear. After a lot of bucking, snorting and backfiring it'll start back up.

    We checked his clutch adjustment but that didn't help. We changed out his primary lube (I think he had too much lube in it) but that didn't help. Took it to the dealer since it is under warranty (and he bought an extended warranty when he got the bike). They adjusted the clutch again and told him that some Harleys are just like that.

    The clutch is working just fine. It shifts just fine. When he starts it with the tranny in neutral everything is fine.

    Any ideas? Is the dealer right and some bikes are just like that?
     
  2. Bud White

    Bud White Well-Known Member Retired Moderators

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    mine has done this a few times .. what mods if any
     
  3. glider

    glider Veteran Member

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    It's more like some dealers are like that. Properly adjusted it should start about the same in neutral or gear with the clutch pulled in.
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2009
  4. bfmitch

    bfmitch Active Member

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    The previous owner removed (or drilled out) the baffles in the stock pipes so he's running leaner than he should. I'm working on him to get a TFI on the bike now to richen it up just a bit. However, I don't think that should be the cause of this problem. Do you?

    Glider,
    That's what I was thinking. The service department at this dealer has been pretty fair so far with regular maintenance on my Sportster and my Road King. But this is the first time with an unusual problem.

    Any ideas what might cause something like this?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 20, 2009
  5. Dan89FLSTC

    Dan89FLSTC Banned

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    Sounds like the clutch is dragging, if you are sure the clutch is adjusted properly, you might try automatic transmission fluid in the primary,it will allow the plates to disengage more completely.
     
  6. glider

    glider Veteran Member

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    It's usually clutch adjustment, cable stretch or a problem in the primary like too much oil, warped clutch plates, hows the primary chain adjuster and the adjustment?
     
  7. Bud White

    Bud White Well-Known Member Retired Moderators

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    i would look into the clutch adjustment .. gutting the baffles shouldnt matter just make it run bad
     
  8. wildspirit97

    wildspirit97 Senior Member

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    The only 2 things I can think of if the clutch is properly adjusted is modified or bent clutch lever (or non stock grips that are too fat) not allowing the clutch to be fully disengaged, or a bad clutch. (week springs,warped plates) If it's really that bad and not just a tiny lurch I would try and have the clutch hub replace under warranty. When mine is cold it will lurch a little if I start it in gear, but I don't have any problems when it's warmed up.
     
  9. bfmitch

    bfmitch Active Member

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    Thanks all! I'm glad you all agree with me that the drilled out baffles shouldn't have anything to do with it. He's looking for a set of Rush slip-ons for his bike, but he stretched himself pretty thin to buy this bike in the first place. He's adding stuff as he has the money for it.

    Glider:
    We will take a look at the primary chain and adjusters. He did have too much oil but we fixed that when we adjusted his clutch the first time, before taking it to the dealer. The bike had Formula+ in the primary. We drained it and replaced it with RedLine Primary and Chaincase oil.

    Wild:
    That lurch you describe is exactly what my RK does. My Sportster did it too. He does have accessory Harley grips that are thicker. When we redo the clutch adjustment we'll try to take into account for the extra thickness of the grips. Clutch hub? Could you maybe 'splain to me just how that would cause the problem? I'm not picturing it.
     
  10. wildspirit97

    wildspirit97 Senior Member

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    I had broken tooth on the starter ring on mine, and Harley replaced the whole clutch assembly because it comes as a whole unit. I don't figure they would fix the clutch, I'm just guessing here, but if they do warranty it, they would just replace the whole clutch assembly.