clutch slave c-clip - BMW Luxury Touring Community
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 4 Old Nov 12th, 2011, 12:24 am Thread Starter
BobbyLT's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Easton, PA, USA
Posts: 34
clutch slave c-clip

I had a clutch failure on my '03 LT with just shy of 150K miles. Tonight I pulled the slave and found the c-clip that holds the plunger/bearing/spring assembly inside the slave had blown out and was laying in the access, resting on the clutch push-rod where the slave seats. As I pulled the slave off and the last screw was removed, it shot off like a rocket from the spring not being held in by the c-clip, releasing additional dot4 fluid. Having not been inside the bike here before, is the c-clip failure what caused the dot4 fluid to be introduced to the seal? Had that clip not come out, would the dot4 have remained behind the plunger assembly? Or, does the leaking o-ring allow the dot4 fluid to break down the metal material of the c-clip and it just eventually pops?

The night it failed, I was about 200 miles from home so I kept chugging since it was all interstate. I noticed a nasty smell of fluid burning (couldn't tell if it was trans or dot4) each time I was traveling up-hill, but the smell subsided considerably when I was on level ground or moving downhill. I plan to replace the entire clutch, clutch slave and trans seals but was looking for some validation on the smell. At this point, I'm unsure if it was dot4 or gear lube that screwed the clutch.

BobbyLT is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 4 Old Nov 12th, 2011, 6:09 am
Senior Member
K100Dennis's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Railton, Tasmania, Australia
Posts: 876
Re: clutch slave c-clip

Bob, I think from what others have told me, is that the displaced C clip will have been as a result of the slave piston rotating in the bore of the cylinder whilst in contact with the clip. When the slave fails it is actually the little thrust bearing which siezes, then the rotational forces are transferred from the clutch push rod into the slave piston, causing it to rotate and it eventually tears up the slave bore, which wrecks the seal and allows the fluid out. You possibly smelt fluid which was getting cooked as the piston spun/stopped/spun etc. When you purchase the new slave unit, take some time to carefully examine the thrust bearing. See if it's able to be re-lubed it is quite small and it eventually fails as it rotates at engine speed continuously. Hope this helps, Dennis.

1987 Yamaha TY250R
1991 Aprilia Climber 280
1988 K100RT (the pack horse)
2005 K1200LTE Light yellow metallic
K100Dennis is offline  
post #3 of 4 Old Nov 12th, 2011, 8:58 am
Senior Member
Mugszy's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Ridgetown, ON, CDA
Posts: 510
Re: clutch slave c-clip

Hi Bob,

I would agree with Dennis and do not see any way that the dot4 would have caused the metal to breakdown.

If you are in the market for a complete clutch assembly, I have one that I purchased as a spare. It came from an 07 that was retired after a deer hit.


"If at first you don't succeed... well, so much for skydiving."

BMWMOA - #45711

2006 K1200LT - Blue Baby
2003 R1150GS - Yellowbird
1981 R100CS - Sadly gone
1991 K1100RS - Sold and burned
1986 K100RS - In the past
Mugszy is offline  
post #4 of 4 Old Nov 12th, 2011, 5:33 pm
Wrencher Extraordinaire
jzeiler's Avatar
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Hazel Green, AL, USA
Posts: 13,372
Re: clutch slave c-clip

The c-clip loose is a new one but the release rod would have held the piston back far enough that no fluid would normally leak. The clip's only purpose is to hold the slave piston in until you install it. Fluid did not cause it to pop off.

Hard to say what went first as tranny seals don't like dot 4 and slave seals don't like gear lube. Either one will take out the other. Just best to replace both.

2009 K1300GT Red Rocket
2009 R1200GS (Gone)
2005 K1200LT Ocean Blue Blue Wizard 110 K and counting...
2006 Bushtec Turbo+2 Spell
2004 330 Ci Convertable

Have ridden a Motorcycle in all 48
But lack DE, MA, RI and CT with the 2005 LT

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
jzeiler is offline  

Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the BMW Luxury Touring Community forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Does tranny fluid take out Clutch Slave? mkiesel K1200LT 7 Mar 2nd, 2011 9:37 pm
Back on an LT after 3 years - clutch slave cyl question Bueller K1200LT 5 May 24th, 2009 8:58 pm
Slipping Clutch - Clutch Slave Cylinder lhendrick K1200LT 24 Mar 29th, 2009 8:02 pm
Unreliable clutch advice please cyclecamper K1200LT 11 Dec 1st, 2008 11:23 pm
latest clutch analysis cyclecamper K1200LT 17 Feb 27th, 2007 10:00 pm

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome