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hennessyktm 03-15-2013 10:32 PM

Its official...I'm frustrated
Yes, another guy having a hell of a time with the clutch on his 950 ADV...I am about to light this beautiful bike on fire.

If you read all this, thanks in advnace.

Background: 04 950 ADV with 26K on it. Clutch developed a very slight drag at the tail end of the last oil change (Castrol 4T Syn 10w50). I didnít like the oil too much (notchy shifts after I put it in), wanted to fix the drag.

Changed oil with Lucas Full Syn 10w50. Because of the drag and research on clutch drag all over this forum, decided to pull the clutch plates, inner hub/booster and inspect.

Plates looked fine, no warping, discoloration, or burnt/glaze on any paltes. Booster looked a bit worn but not nearly as bad as some within this site...looked okay.

Inner hub and basket had tell tale signs of clutch plates notching/digging into the drive side of each.

SO...I saturated the plates in new oil, filed down the notches (basket and iner hub, drive side only) just enough to make it feel smoother/not as nothcy with a super fine file, cleaned the old grease/rust off the booster, put a small dab of Lucas Red Tacky #2 grease on the ramps/dogs of the booster.

Applied Permatex equivalent of Loctite 243 (I think it was 21200 or something) to the 32mm nut and re-torqued to spec.

Swapped the inner steel with an outer steel because the inner had a slight groove. Installed plates with all sharp edges in the same direction.

Placed all Fibers in the same meshing except for the last which I placed one meshing further. Buttoned up the clutch.

Inspected Push rod, looks fine (its a steel one piece), no corrosion.

Inspected the slave, no weeping, o-rings look good. Cleaned it up a bit and put it back on the bike.

Now the fun part...checked the clutch was damn near black. So, replaced it with rip-off motorex fluid 75 (no 2.5wt fork oil locally in any shops, didn't want to use baby oil, ATF, etc). Bled it about nine-thousand times. Bled from the slave up to the master with a syringe (with hose clamps, no air) for about an hour. Wife removing excess from master as I fed it mineral oil from the slave. Bled until no bubbles appearing, then bled for another 5-10 minutes. Started bike, bike stalls when I put it in gear.

Went and bought a hand vacuum bleeder (MityMax) and tried reverse bleeding, sucking fluid from the master via the slave. Wife added mineral oil as needed, not letting it get low, as I pumped via the slave until no bubbles and then some. Started bike, bike stalls when I put it in gear.

Ditched the syringe and MityMax, tried it the old fashion way; attached tube/container full of mineral oil to bleeder nipple, cracked nipple, wife pulled clutch lever and held it to the bar, I closed the nipple, she added mineral oil to the master as needed, never let it get low. Repeated this for about an hour. Started bike, put it in gear, bike stalls.

Oh, gave the lever max play prior to bleeding, then removed all play when I tested it. Also pulled the clutch cover off to inspect movement. Looks like its getting 2-3mm of movement or so. Removed the pressure plate and checked the push rod. Push rod is sticking out and I can feel the hydraulic pressure on it when I push it into the slave from the clutch side.

I am stumped. I thought it was air in the line but I have bled it over and over using various methods until I got no bubbles to no avail.

What do you guys think?

pdxmotorhead 03-15-2013 11:20 PM

Didn't see it so gotta ask,, did you change/clean the clutch oil jet?

Not that it would matter that quick after starting..

If you put it in 5th gear, will it move without turning the motor when you pull the clutch lever in?

I tried a full synthetic in my old DR30 years ago,, it did the opposite, I had to drop to a blend to make the clutch not slip... Took a while for it to recover..


TrentW 03-16-2013 12:25 AM

Can you describe "bike stalls" in more detail?

When you click it into gear, does the bike lurch forward (ie the clutch is dragging) or does the engine just quit - If it's the later, it sounds more like a sidestand switch cut out problem than a clutch problem.

gefr 03-16-2013 12:34 AM

I think you focused too much on bleeding the hydraulic clutch
I had huge clutch dragging problems when my bike was new. It was a Adv Dec 2003. My mechanic replaced the pushrod and installed the oil reduction jet. Nothing improved the situation. Finally the KTM moma stepped in after a complaint I did to them and they replaced the whole clutch assembly. I argued the oil reduction jet was installed after my clutch plates have been damaged. I never had the motor die though.
If you are sure you haven't misplaced the inner clutch disc with the larger inside diameter, where the belevil ring resides, I believe replacing your clutch assy would be the only option. However I cannot understand why you have so much drag to the extent your motor dies. That means you have no disengagement whatsoever. One surplus clutch disc maybe? 10 fibre and 11 steel IIRC.
How is the clutch feeling? Is it OK?
The pushropd pin is not binding the pushrod operation somehow?

DeepInIt 03-16-2013 05:31 AM

Yes, you are spending too much time on the bleeding. It is not that hard and if it feels okay at the handle, your done.

If you do any adventuring at all, you should be carrying a sidestand bypass. Use this to eliminate that as a cause.

Clean oil jet. If this gets clogged, it is amazing how much this can affect clutch performance.

After that, if it is still "catching", you need to go back through your rebuild to though it sounded very thorough. 26K would be early for replacement parts but ...

rossguzzi 03-16-2013 05:38 AM

I was going to say check the pin.
Kind of glad Im not the only one having drag problems.
I roughed up the steel plates with wet and dry which improves things quite a bit for a while. ie. no drag but dam hard to get N at stop.

hennessyktm 03-16-2013 08:11 AM

First, thanks for all the repliesÖI love this site.

Pdxmotorhead: I did not clean the oil jet during this last bout of maintenance, but just cleaned it about 800 miles ago. Not sure if thatís it, but Iíll hit it up today.

TrentW: Over the various bleeding bouts, the bike would stall both ways; either lurch forward, stall out right as I put it in gear, and one time it had incredibly strong drag that I could only stop with the front brake. Bike has a side stand bypass put on by PO.

gefr: thatís sweet KTM replaced your entire clutch. After all this, last night I pulled the clutch cover to re-inspect the paltes, etc. I removed all plates and the belville washer and made sure I didnít slip up and put something in the wrong order. All was well/installed properly and put in according to the manual.

The clutch feels ok. What do you mean ďI believe replacing your clutch disengagement whatsoever?Ē

I also pulled the slave off and re-checked the pushrod pin was seated properly in the slave itselfÖit was.

DeepInIt: The sidestand is bypassed. Iíll re-hit the oil jet.

rossguzzi: checked the pin, all is well.

I read of some guys removing the slave itself and bleeding it when removed from the bike thus getting out trapped air. I am going to try that. Also tracking not to pump/touch the lever with the stock slave off the bike. I know Iíve bled this bike to death, but I donít know what else to do.

Boatman 03-16-2013 09:11 AM

Do you still have the old style clutch pushrod???

Masa 03-16-2013 10:11 AM


Originally Posted by hennessyktm (Post 20959064)
... Also pulled the clutch cover off to inspect movement. Looks like its getting 2-3mm of movement or so. ...

That should be plenty to disengage. I think you should be able to rotate the clutch by hand when cover is off and lever puller in, or at least with gear on and rotating the back wheel.

Katoom72 03-16-2013 10:16 AM


Originally Posted by Masa (Post 20961333)
That should be plenty to disengage. I think you should be able to rotate the clutch by hand when cover is off and lever puller in, or at least with gear on and rotating the back wheel.

Try that

hennessyktm 03-16-2013 05:54 PM

Yes, it has the "new," one piece push rod.

With bike off, I tried putting it in gear, pulling the clutch in, and turning the back wheel. I can get it to turn, but it is hard as hell.

Katoom72 03-16-2013 06:06 PM

You sure the clutch bucket ain't jamming somehere?

Night Falcon 03-16-2013 06:23 PM

Sounds like you've bled it to death so don't think thats your problem, this can only mean its a mechanical problem in the clutch (plates or springs are out of spec?) or your oil is contaminated? How are your cables looking?

Chuckracer 03-16-2013 06:41 PM

I got a dollar that says the oil jet has unscrewed itself from it's perch.

keener 03-16-2013 09:08 PM

I say stop bleeding the poor thing, save your sanity and look elsewhere. Have you checked the clutch oil jet?

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