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I'm having a real problem shifting my 2005 LT. into 1st. gear. Not always, but sometimes I feel like I need to completely stomp on it to get it to shift into 1st. gear. The bike has less than 20K miles on it. Is this a real common occurence and is anyone else having this problem. Does anyone have any idea as to what my problem might be? Any help would be appreciated. Thanks-
 

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headhanso said:
I'm having a real problem shifting my 2005 LT. into 1st. gear. Not always, but sometimes I feel like I need to completely stomp on it to get it to shift into 1st. gear. The bike has less than 20K miles on it. Is this a real common occurence and is anyone else having this problem. Does anyone have any idea as to what my problem might be? Any help would be appreciated. Thanks-
A quick search would have found you lots of information on this "problem." Long story short, it is a characteristic of a dry clutch design. The proper technique is to hold light pressure on the shift lever (NEVER stomp on a shifter!) and then slowly engage the clutch. The tranny will snick into 1st as slick as a whistle.
 

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I have this issue, but only after I use reverse. It will indicate first, but it is still in neutral. I found if I roll the bike about 6 inches after I take it out of reverse, it will go into first without any problem.

Just another thought.
 

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Remember these gears are in constant mesh so the only way to select one is to move a four tooth dog on the side of the gears. If they are not moving when you hit the shifter no amount of stomping will engage them. Just a little movement and they will slip in like butter.
 

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If you do your shift when you pull in the clutch it will go right in. If you wait a few seconds and everything stops turning, it may or may not be meshed and it may or may not go in. Shift into first as soon as you pull in the clutch and it can't help but go into gear... ;)
 

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On my 06 LT I find that pulling the clutch handle in 2 times (sometimes 3) always allows me to go into 1st without any problem, no noise and no drama. After a few times of doing this it becomes second nature and I don't think about it anymore. I only need to do this when shifting into first.
 

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Voyager said:
A quick search would have found you lots of information on this "problem." Long story short, it is a characteristic of a dry clutch design. The proper technique is to hold light pressure on the shift lever (NEVER stomp on a shifter!) and then slowly engage the clutch. The tranny will snick into 1st as slick as a whistle.
Are you neutral trying to go to first? Do the above or pull the clutch in try it, if it don't go don't stomp on it but let the clutch out half way then pull it in again, try it... or rock the bike forward or back try it. The latter you look like a noob. The others methods are less obvious. :D
 

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Voyager said:
A quick search would have found you lots of information on this "problem." Long story short, it is a characteristic of a dry clutch design. The proper technique is to hold light pressure on the shift lever (NEVER stomp on a shifter!) and then slowly engage the clutch. The tranny will snick into 1st as slick as a whistle.
It works everytime--I had the same problem--use to a wet clutch...but once I learned the proper technique from all these great folks here...well, I never have a problem and my Bike loves to pass any Harley it views!
 

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I have had my 2009 LT for about a week now, just hit 500 miles. Yesterday at a quick light I looked like a real winner trying to get my ride into 1st gear, it would not go. I rocked it a few inches and pulled the clutch lever a few times after I gained my composure and it slipped right in, but I had a line of cars behind me that missed the light, no one said anything but it was embarrasing. I notice it never happens when I downshift as I come to a stop, just from neutral... according to the Advanced Motorcycle riding course I attended a few years ago I am never supposed to be in neutral at a light anyway. I have learned from this thread that this is common and I will not be caught like that again. Still love the ride!
 

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I just realised the reason I don't have trouble with this... I always get into 1st before I come to a stop and stay in first at the light. Never in neutral, ready for a quick escape.
 

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cfell said:
I shift into 1st as soon as I pull the clutch lever.. goes into gear 99 % of the time.

Since the LT doesn't have any "synchros", it's just a "manual" shift.
Synchros wouldn't help with the "first gear" problem anyway. My car and pickup have the same problem and they do have fully sychronized gear boxes. The problem isn't matching rotational speeds, it is that there is no rotation!
 

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I've found the clutch disengages very early when you pull the lever. When going from neutral to first I usually only pull the lever about 1/2 way in and it drops right into 1st. Pulling the lever back to the grip seems to always cause problems going into 1st.
 

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LARK said:
I've found the clutch disengages very early when you pull the lever. When going from neutral to first I usually only pull the lever about 1/2 way in and it drops right into 1st. Pulling the lever back to the grip seems to always cause problems going into 1st.
I can see this helping in a couple of ways. First, you may still be getting a little drag from the clutch and thus simulating to some degree a wet clutch with its viscous drag that keeps things rotating a little bit. Second, by pulling only part way back you may be clicking into gear a little more quckly and catching it while the input shaft is still rotating a little.
 

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jzeiler said:
I just realised the reason I don't have trouble with this... I always get into 1st before I come to a stop and stay in first at the light. Never in neutral, ready for a quick escape.
+1
What is neutral? I stop the engine by putting the kick stand down, in 1st gear.

Oh ya, now I remember neutral is when you have it on the center stand and you want to move the rear tire so you can get to the air valve. :D
 
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