This shows how the variator should work: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2wKEri_SwjQ
It's a variable width pully, much like a snowmobile clutch, controlled by the lever with the notches. When working correctly, it is used to vary (Variator) the ground speed of the tractor in each gear.
F650GS -- sold -- what's next?
“If everything seems under control, you're just not going fast enough.”, Mario Andretti
Indulge. Repent. Repeat.