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I bought an '02 LT last fall. I've never been one to start up my bike and let it idle for a few minutes before riding out. I jump on, start the engine and ride away. Over the winter, I noticed that my bike would have trouble switching into second gear in the mornings...the shift lever was very stiff and difficult to pull upward, but it would switch into neutral with little effort. This was just a morning issue because the bike would easily shift into second for the ride home from work.

I have done some experimenting. First I attempted to prime the clutch before riding out by squeezing and releasing the clutch about 20 times before the initial ride...sometimes it seemed to help, other times it did not. Then I found that if I put the bike on the center stand overnight, there are no problems with shifting into second when I ride out in the morning. What does this indicate? Is this typical? Do I have a problem? Is there something I should check?

I should mention that I always park the bike in first gear when it's on the side stand. The bike is parked in neutral when on the center stand.
 

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Same thing here also. And I am in South Texas where our temps in the winter can get down to a bone shilling 38*sometimes. I park on the center stand in the garage and when I leave, I have to squeeze the clutch four or five times to get it into first. After that, smooth as silk. If I park outside somewhere and I leave it on the side stand, it's in gear and then it's hard to shift into second...the first time. After that, smooth as silk also.
That also happens in the summer where out outside temps at night can sometimes drop into the low 80's.:eek:
 

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cealbrecht said:
I bought an '02 LT last fall. I've never been one to start up my bike and let it idle for a few minutes before riding out. I jump on, start the engine and ride away. Over the winter, I noticed that my bike would have trouble switching into second gear in the mornings...the shift lever was very stiff and difficult to pull upward, but it would switch into neutral with little effort. This was just a morning issue because the bike would easily shift into second for the ride home from work.

I have done some experimenting. First I attempted to prime the clutch before riding out by squeezing and releasing the clutch about 20 times before the initial ride...sometimes it seemed to help, other times it did not. Then I found that if I put the bike on the center stand overnight, there are no problems with shifting into second when I ride out in the morning. What does this indicate? Is this typical? Do I have a problem? Is there something I should check?

I should mention that I always park the bike in first gear when it's on the side stand. The bike is parked in neutral when on the center stand.
Not sure if this is what you are seeing, but when I bought my 01 LT it was very hard shifting, especially into second and especially when it was cold. Things got better as it warmed up. What I found fixed the problem was to disassemble the shift linkage, clean it well with brake cleaner and re-lube all the joints with a silicone based grease. Now she shifts like a charm in any weather.
 

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The cold weather makes the shift mechanism both inside and outside the transmission stiff because petroleum products generally get thick as they get cold. Lube the shift mechanism and put a good synthetic lube in the tranny. That should help.
 

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I used to have trouble with second gear about 1 out of every 40 or 50 times. That was the only gear I ever had trouble with. I broke one of those cheesy balls that the shift linkage is attached to a couple of weeks ago. I took all the linkage off, cleaned it and lubed it and I haven't had trouble with second gear since.
 
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