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post #1 of 38 Old Jan 13th, 2007, 11:25 am Thread Starter
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Press starter, whizzzz, no turneee...

Off to the Bike Show in DC this morning......get on and press the starter...it responds with a healthy, gentle "whizzzzzzzzz" but doesn't catch and turn the motor. Its like nothing I've heard before. Not a flat battery (I know THAT sound), not starter relay (its the new model and it switches off/on with the starter button OK)...I suspect its something in the starter itself where its turning, but not engaging the flywheel (or whatever it engages to start turning the actual motor).

Any ideas? Sprag clutch...but why would it fail with no warning ever before. It has sat unturned for 6 weeks.

Ralph
Located: Auckland, New Zealand...
but I left my biking heart along the Scenic Byways of America.....

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Today of past regrets and future fears." ....Omar Khayyam

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post #2 of 38 Old Jan 13th, 2007, 12:22 pm
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Sprag Clutch

Unfortunately I think you've hit the nail on the head...

Look in the HOW and see what you can find on it...

Maybe PM David Shealey and see what his thoughts are on it...

I understand it's quite a tear down to get to it so you've got some work ahead of you...

Good Luck

John

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post #3 of 38 Old Jan 13th, 2007, 12:53 pm
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Try putting it in reverse and using it. It's a function of the starter motor and may free the sprag clutch. Put some of that engine cleaner, I believe it's called CD-2 in it. You may have to get a push start if using reverse doesn't free it up.



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post #4 of 38 Old Jan 13th, 2007, 12:59 pm Thread Starter
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OK, thanks guys, I tried reverse, no help. CD-2 may be the answer plus a push start on the VERY FLAT Philly streets.

Ralph
Located: Auckland, New Zealand...
but I left my biking heart along the Scenic Byways of America.....

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post #5 of 38 Old Jan 13th, 2007, 1:05 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grifscoots
Try putting it in reverse and using it. It's a function of the starter motor and may free the sprag clutch. Put some of that engine cleaner, I believe it's called CD-2 in it. You may have to get a push start if using reverse doesn't free it up.
Ole Toad won't start in reverse. I use that feature when overnighting in a motel/hotel. Course, next morning, panic sat in when I tried to start ole Toad and nada.
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post #6 of 38 Old Jan 13th, 2007, 1:11 pm
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Starter problem

I had a similar problem with my 1150RT at about 6,000 miles. By putting the bike in gear and rocking a little it would start. It turned out to be a badly cast flywheel.


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post #7 of 38 Old Jan 13th, 2007, 1:25 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dick
Ole Toad won't start in reverse. I use that feature when overnighting in a motel/hotel. Course, next morning, panic sat in when I tried to start ole Toad and nada.
Silly! I was talking about backing her up, switching reverse off and then trying to start it.



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post #8 of 38 Old Jan 13th, 2007, 1:26 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by axamax
I had a similar problem with my 1150RT at about 6,000 miles. By putting the bike in gear and rocking a little it would start. It turned out to be a badly cast flywheel.
I've heard of that one working on the LT, too.



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post #9 of 38 Old Jan 13th, 2007, 4:23 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rmg08057
Off to the Bike Show in DC this morning......get on and press the starter...it responds with a healthy, gentle "whizzzzzzzzz" but doesn't catch and turn the motor. Its like nothing I've heard before. Not a flat battery (I know THAT sound), not starter relay (its the new model and it switches off/on with the starter button OK)...I suspect its something in the starter itself where its turning, but not engaging the flywheel (or whatever it engages to start turning the actual motor).

Any ideas? Sprag clutch...but why would it fail with no warning ever before. It has sat unturned for 6 weeks.
Yep, Sprag clutch.

Hope you can get it running again and put some CD-2 in it in hopes of cleaning the buildup out of it. It will take some time for it to work, so hope you can get it started now, and for the future thousand miles or so.

Try putting it in gear and rocking it back and forth, then try starting it again. Rocking the engine will rock the sprag clutch assembly, and often will free up the sprags enough for them to grab again. If it gets so that even that won't work, you are in for one of the worst jobs possible on the LT. Ask me how I know that!

I don't want to achieve immortality through my work...I want to achieve it through not dying.

David Shealey
Dandridge, TN
EX: '01 Black LT, BAT BYKE (Totaled at 110,000 miles)
IBA SS, BB, BBG, 10/10ths.
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post #10 of 38 Old Jan 13th, 2007, 4:29 pm
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Cd-2

So David,

I'm taking from this that the perodic use of some CD-2 will help to keep the sprag clutch clean and working over the long haul ???

How much, ? How often ? All the time ?

Thanks

John

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post #11 of 38 Old Jan 13th, 2007, 4:31 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grifscoots
Try putting it in reverse and using it. It's a function of the starter motor and may free the sprag clutch. Put some of that engine cleaner, I believe it's called CD-2 in it. You may have to get a push start if using reverse doesn't free it up.
Reverse won't do anything at all, as the only thing that will rotate the sprag cage assembly is to rock the engine over by putting it in gear and rocking the bike back and forth. Only engine rotation will do that. When I had mine start doing it, that would free the sprags enough to get it starting again. Unfortunately, this only worked for a few days, then it would not engage at all. Running the starter only spins the inner race of the sprag clutch, the sprag cage assembly is in the outer race, which is geared to the crankshaft.

Push starting the bike is easy, if you have someone to push it for you. Put it in second gear, have them push it up to a fast walk speed, then let the clutch out and pull it in again as soon as the engine starts.

I don't want to achieve immortality through my work...I want to achieve it through not dying.

David Shealey
Dandridge, TN
EX: '01 Black LT, BAT BYKE (Totaled at 110,000 miles)
IBA SS, BB, BBG, 10/10ths.
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post #12 of 38 Old Jan 13th, 2007, 5:21 pm
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Smile Sprague Change

I just performed this fun job today. It is a big job . When removing my replacement bearing cage out of the parts rapper 10 of the dam bearings with the tiny springs fell out. Spent the better part of a hour reinstalling the microscopic springs and bearings into the cage.
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Pete Murray
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post #13 of 38 Old Jan 13th, 2007, 6:28 pm Thread Starter
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Dang it Peter, I told you to call me whenever you were doing the sprague clutch thingy next time....you should have rung me yesterday!
:-)

Ralph
Located: Auckland, New Zealand...
but I left my biking heart along the Scenic Byways of America.....

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post #14 of 38 Old Jan 13th, 2007, 6:33 pm Thread Starter
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David + Pete

Is it your impression that the CD-2 thing is only temporaryily effective? I read another thread where several people with the same problem who used CD-2 ran the bike for longer periods. If its only deposits and not wear, then why wouldn't a few rapid oil changes + the CD-2 thing clean it all up permanently?

Ralph
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but I left my biking heart along the Scenic Byways of America.....

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post #15 of 38 Old Jan 13th, 2007, 6:59 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rmg08057
David + Pete

Is it your impression that the CD-2 thing is only temporaryily effective? I read another thread where several people with the same problem who used CD-2 ran the bike for longer periods. If its only deposits and not wear, then why wouldn't a few rapid oil changes + the CD-2 thing clean it all up permanently?
CD-2 can be a permanent fix. The problem with the sprag clutch is that it does not take much carbon/varnish buildup to cause the little sprags to stick in the cage. They have to move freely to lock up on the inner race when the starter motor turns it. They then release and allow the outer cage to rotate freely around the inner race when the engine starts and is running faster than the starter is turning the inner race. If the sides of them stick in the cage they are retained in, they will not pivot down freely and lock up as needed.

Running CD-2, which is a stong oil detergent additive, can loosen and flush out the carbon/varnish, freeing the sprags. Once clean, they will continue to operate properly until build-up occurs again.

I would advise running a bottle of CD-2 (or Rislone oil detergent additive) every 4th or 5th change to help keep the sprag assembly free.

I don't want to achieve immortality through my work...I want to achieve it through not dying.

David Shealey
Dandridge, TN
EX: '01 Black LT, BAT BYKE (Totaled at 110,000 miles)
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post #16 of 38 Old Jan 13th, 2007, 7:06 pm
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David,

Would the CD-2 be compatible with synthetic engine oil?

TIA
Ramon
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post #17 of 38 Old Jan 13th, 2007, 7:07 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by murray
I just performed this fun job today. It is a big job . When removing my replacement bearing cage out of the parts rapper 10 of the dam bearings with the tiny springs fell out. Spent the better part of a hour reinstalling the microscopic springs and bearings into the cage.
Glad to see someone else has experienced this thoroughly joyful task besides me!

I think you will now agree with me, that when BMW starts assembly of the LT, they first place the sprag clutch on the assembly line, then assemble the rest of the bike around it.

I don't want to achieve immortality through my work...I want to achieve it through not dying.

David Shealey
Dandridge, TN
EX: '01 Black LT, BAT BYKE (Totaled at 110,000 miles)
IBA SS, BB, BBG, 10/10ths.
No bike now, but maybe in the future.

Last edited by dshealey; Jan 13th, 2007 at 10:02 pm.
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post #18 of 38 Old Jan 13th, 2007, 7:24 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaFlake
David,

Would the CD-2 be compatible with synthetic engine oil?

TIA
Ramon
The bottle does not differentiate, and I checked the website (used to be Alemite, now distrubuted by Turtle Wax) and nothing there either.
http://www.turtlewax.com/main.taf?p=2,2,2,6

I don't see any reason it would not be compatible, since synthetics are still mostly petroleum based, and are compatible with standard dino oils.

It's purpose is to dissolve and disperse buildups, which is the problem with the sprag clutches.

I don't want to achieve immortality through my work...I want to achieve it through not dying.

David Shealey
Dandridge, TN
EX: '01 Black LT, BAT BYKE (Totaled at 110,000 miles)
IBA SS, BB, BBG, 10/10ths.
No bike now, but maybe in the future.
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post #19 of 38 Old Jan 13th, 2007, 8:27 pm
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Thanks, David. I know I'm going to go out and get a bottle of CD-2 as preventative measure.

Ralph, I'm keeping my fingers crossed for you.

-joel
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post #20 of 38 Old Jan 14th, 2007, 6:54 am Thread Starter
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Joel, I need your help to push start the beast on the streets here. Its really flat, and I can't get a paasserby because they all have a hangover after the Eagles game.

Thanks everyone for your help.

Ralph
Located: Auckland, New Zealand...
but I left my biking heart along the Scenic Byways of America.....

"Come fill the cup that clears
Today of past regrets and future fears." ....Omar Khayyam
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post #21 of 38 Old Jan 14th, 2007, 7:58 am
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Ralph,
did you try placing it in 2nd gear and rocking it a little? Than try the starter.

Mike Trevelino
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post #22 of 38 Old Jan 14th, 2007, 8:27 am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rmg08057
Dang it Peter, I told you to call me whenever you were doing the sprague clutch thingy next time....you should have rung me yesterday!
:-)
Sorry Ralph hopefully there will not be a next time. I should have done this last year when I did the rear main seal and clutch. Also drilled the weep hole last year.
The job was not 100 % necessary but this is part of my prep for next years rally riding season.

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post #23 of 38 Old Jan 14th, 2007, 8:40 am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rmg08057
David + Pete

Is it your impression that the CD-2 thing is only temporaryily effective? I read another thread where several people with the same problem who used CD-2 ran the bike for longer periods. If its only deposits and not wear, then why wouldn't a few rapid oil changes + the CD-2 thing clean it all up permanently?
David is as usual 100 % correct. I will add that there almost microscopic springs which allow the sprags to move. These little suckers are strong. I know because I had to refit 10 of the sprag bearings and springs back into the cage.
The CD2 continued to work for me, I found that I had to do the treatment about every oil change over the last 18,000 miles.I would add the cd2 and run it hard for 200 miles and dump the oil.
Look close at the picture you can see the springs in the cage.
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post #24 of 38 Old Jan 14th, 2007, 8:42 am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaFlake
David,

Would the CD-2 be compatible with synthetic engine oil?

TIA
Ramon
I have used it with success.

Pete Murray
IBA # 359 and
2014 RT
1973 R75/5
2002 LT 171 K Gone
2008 FJR 36 K Gone
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post #25 of 38 Old Jan 14th, 2007, 8:45 am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dshealey
Glad to see someone else has experienced this thoroughly joyful task besides me!

I think you will now agree with me, that when BMW starts assembly of the LT, they first place the sprag clutch on the assembly line, then assemble the rest of the bike around it.
There is no doubt, 10-4 over and out !!

Pete Murray
IBA # 359 and
2014 RT
1973 R75/5
2002 LT 171 K Gone
2008 FJR 36 K Gone
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post #26 of 38 Old Jan 14th, 2007, 8:47 am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rmg08057
Joel, I need your help to push start the beast on the streets here. Its really flat, and I can't get a paasserby because they all have a hangover after the Eagles game.

Thanks everyone for your help.
Ralph let me know if I can help.

Pete Murray
IBA # 359 and
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1973 R75/5
2002 LT 171 K Gone
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post #27 of 38 Old Jan 14th, 2007, 9:37 am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by murray
I found that I had to do the treatment about every oil change over the last 18,000 miles.I would add the cd2 and run it hard for 200 miles and dump the oil.
You only keep the CD-2 in for 200 miles? So basically you're doing two oil changes for every oil change interval?

Ralph, you move to sunny Arizona and I'll help you push any time.

Cheers,
-joel
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post #28 of 38 Old Jan 14th, 2007, 10:04 am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kdog
You only keep the CD-2 in for 200 miles? So basically you're doing two oil changes for every oil change interval?

Ralph, you move to sunny Arizona and I'll help you push any time.

Cheers,
-joel
I use the BMW synthetic and change the oil at 6000 mile intervals. Example at 5800 miles I add the CD-2 run the bike hard for 200 miles straight non stop then dump the oil.

Pete Murray
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post #29 of 38 Old Jan 14th, 2007, 11:54 am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by murray
I use the BMW synthetic and change the oil at 6000 mile intervals. Example at 5800 miles I add the CD-2 run the bike hard for 200 miles straight non stop then dump the oil.
I would put it in about every 4th=5th oil change and leave it in until changed again. It does not work all that fast, needs time to loosen/disolve any deposits. If one is worried about the amount, then just use half a bottle, although the LT has almost as much oil in it as a most cars, as much as many.

I don't want to achieve immortality through my work...I want to achieve it through not dying.

David Shealey
Dandridge, TN
EX: '01 Black LT, BAT BYKE (Totaled at 110,000 miles)
IBA SS, BB, BBG, 10/10ths.
No bike now, but maybe in the future.
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post #30 of 38 Old Jan 14th, 2007, 11:56 am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by murray
I use the BMW synthetic and change the oil at 6000 mile intervals. Example at 5800 miles I add the CD-2 run the bike hard for 200 miles straight non stop then dump the oil.
Gotcha. Thanks,
-joel
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post #31 of 38 Old Jan 14th, 2007, 3:37 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by murray
I use the BMW synthetic and change the oil at 6000 mile intervals. Example at 5800 miles I add the CD-2 run the bike hard for 200 miles straight non stop then dump the oil.
If you do it on that schedule you may want to try an old automotive trick for cleaning out the engine. Add some type F auto trans fluid to the oil, run it for a bit then change the oil. The type F has strong detergents that will clean out an engine nicely and won't harm anything.
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post #32 of 38 Old Jan 14th, 2007, 5:39 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Morley
If you do it on that schedule you may want to try an old automotive trick for cleaning out the engine. Add some type F auto trans fluid to the oil, run it for a bit then change the oil. The type F has strong detergents that will clean out an engine nicely and won't harm anything.
Ken thanks for the tip I pray I am done with this one.

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post #33 of 38 Old Jan 14th, 2007, 5:46 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dshealey
I would put it in about every 4th=5th oil change and leave it in until changed again. It does not work all that fast, needs time to loosen/disolve any deposits. If one is worried about the amount, then just use half a bottle, although the LT has almost as much oil in it as a most cars, as much as many.
I have noted relatively stunning results with the technique I used. I agree a longer duration of treatment could be more effective. It must take more time to work on those indirect sites such as that sprague devil !
I must admit the site glass always looks like new after the CD-2 treatment.

Pete Murray
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post #34 of 38 Old Jan 14th, 2007, 6:13 pm
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How cold is it out there in PA? That may affect the sprag clutch if the buildup is marginal.

I started my LT one cold Oregon winter morning and drove less than a mile to a gas station. After filling up, the starter just spun and spun. I push started (wearing full winter gear ), then rode an additional 1,000 miles that day with half a dozen short stops for gas and food. Haven't had a problem since.

Maybe the LT was just glad to be back in sunny SoCal.

But thanks for reminding me that I really need to pick up a couple bottles of CD-2.

Ken
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'09 Magnesium Beige Metallic K13GT, 63K miles
'03 Anthracite Metallic K12LTC, 66K miles
'02 Mauve Metallic K12LTC, 106K miles and sold
BMWLT#143, IBA# 366, MOA# 111996, SCMA# 24032


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Some people see the gas tank as half empty. Some see it as half full. All I care is that I know where the next tankful is coming from...
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post #35 of 38 Old Jan 14th, 2007, 8:54 pm
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Location: Dandridge (Near Knoxville), TN, USA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by murray
-------------------It must take more time to work on those indirect sites such as that sprague devil !-----------------
Just a minor correction, it is spelled sprag, not sprague.

These types of clutches were invented by Formsprag in the WWII timeframe, but several companies make them these days.
http://www.formsprag.com/

Google "sprag clutch", and you will get a lot of information.

I don't want to achieve immortality through my work...I want to achieve it through not dying.

David Shealey
Dandridge, TN
EX: '01 Black LT, BAT BYKE (Totaled at 110,000 miles)
IBA SS, BB, BBG, 10/10ths.
No bike now, but maybe in the future.
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post #36 of 38 Old Jan 15th, 2007, 8:16 am
 
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My 2000 starter sprag clutch used to slip when I approached the end of my 12,000 mile synthetic oil changes around 100,000 miles. I just changed the oil right away when this would happen and would be good for nearly another 12,000 miles, when it would happen again.
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post #37 of 38 Old Jan 15th, 2007, 8:47 am
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Location: Hiawassee, GA, USA
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When my rat bike does this I can free it up by giving the side of the engine a good whack with a hammer. My bike does not have the lower plastic so I can whack it above the right foot peg and that has worked so far. With the lower plastic on you might try whacking it UNDER the right foot peg in the area of the flywheel bell housing.

1999 K1200LT Rat Bike Sold
2000 K1200LT Black Bike SOLD
2003 K1200RS Alpine White and Blue SOLD
2002 R1150GS sold
2008 "smart"
2001 K1200LT current project, AKA M1.2, AKA Horten 229
2002 F650GS It's runnin y'all
2005 K1200S
2012 R1200GS Rally
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post #38 of 38 Old Jan 15th, 2007, 10:01 am
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I first encountered the sprag clutch issue at about 130k miles. I wanted to wait for the next regular clutch replacement so I could fix/replace the sprag clutch at the same time but I wasn't due for a new clutch for another 60k miles! After reading here I tried both the CD-2 and engine flush as a temporary fix. I flushed the engine, dropped the oil, added new synth oil and CD-2 every 6k miles. I still occasionally had the problem butt got up to about 175k without having to tear down the bike. BTW: rocking the bike in 2nd gear is definitely the short term work around.

I discussed this with my dealer and he pointed out that the sprag clutch was high in the engine block and relied on oil splash for lubrication. Properly using engine flush (not revving the engine) would probably have no beneficial effect since the chemicals would never get up to the sprag clutch. We tried going back to dino oil but that didn't help.

My dealer suggested using a very light weight oil and running it for several hundred miles. It just so happened that CCR near Atlanta was the following week and I was planning a BBG3k to get there. We changed the oil to some racing oil he uses (I think it was 10w) and off I went. I didn't have any trouble with the sprag clutch during the ride but once I got there and had Blue Moon Cycles change the oil back to straight synth, the problem repeated about every 20th time I tried to start the bike.

The way I finally got rid of the problem was blowing up my engine when returning from CCR and replacing it with Silver Buffalo's old engine that had only 30k miles on it (thanks Hans!). So far so good!

I now plan to replace the sprag clutch every other regular clutch replacment. Once you're in the bike that deep a couple hundred dollars on preventative maintenance is money well spent. YMMV.

Cheers!

Bob Bacon
El Cerrito, (Northern) CA
'15 GTL-E in White
'09 LT in Blk "Weave II" 120k miles before it was totaled
'00 LTC+ in CR "Weave" 240k miles before it was totaled
MOA IBA HDDC CRS
Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take but by the moments that take our breath away.


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