Motorcycle won't go into neutral when engine is running and hot

Discussion in 'OT Driven' started by Cannondale, Aug 24, 2015.

  1. Cannondale

    Cannondale OT Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2007
    Messages:
    87,845
    Likes Received:
    1,920
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    So, I changed my oil a few days ago, and didn't do a long test ride after that, but ran it around the neighborhood and had no issues. Today I go to work, motorcycle is fine when I start out and I don't have any issues, until I park it at my office and try to find neutral. It "clunks" around jumping from first to second gear. Have to work, so I shut it down and go inside. Later, I come back out, put key in, lights on, find neutral instantly. Alright. So I ride home, and I only have a few stops so I don't have much opportunity to go into neutral, but sure enough when I stop to check my mailbox, it won't go again. I turn it off, and it goes into neutral just fine. I start it again and go up my driveway, but when I'm in the garage and it's running, again it won't go into neutral.

    So basically, it will not go into neutral when running, but fine when it's off. It also only seems to be an issue when the engine has reached operating temperature, but when it's cold, it's fine. The bike ran 100% and shifted 100% before the oil change, my guess is bad oil but it's Castrol SG and JASO MA-2 grade motorcycle oil, in the correct 10w40. Did Castrol package oil that wasn't motorcycle clutch rated?
     
  2. Stuntman

    Stuntman New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2015
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    I'm not familiar with those oils (I used 60 wt Valvoline Racing Oil in my last bike), and I don't know what your bike is, but it sure sounds like an oil and/or clutch problem. Is that the same oil you were using before the oil change?
     
  3. Cannondale

    Cannondale OT Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2007
    Messages:
    87,845
    Likes Received:
    1,920
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    This is the second oil change on this bike, the first one was done at the dealer. I know they use oil meeting the same specifications, but I don't know the brand. The bike has just shy of 4k miles on it, and the clutches were working fine prior.
     
  4. Stuntman

    Stuntman New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2015
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    Some people don't believe in coincidence, but I do. I would suggest that you check your clutch release. If it's a cable, it may have started to stretch a bit. It doesn't take much stretch to cause the neutral problem you describe (been there). If it's hydraulic, make sure the master is full and it's properly bled. If the release is okay, find out what oil they put in it the bike at the dealer, and change to that. These are the cheapest and easiest things to try.
     
  5. Cannondale

    Cannondale OT Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2007
    Messages:
    87,845
    Likes Received:
    1,920
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    Turns out, they use the oil I should have put in there (Yamalube 10w40), so I'll go buy some and a new filter tomorrow.
     
  6. Wolf

    Wolf No one plans to take the path that brings you lowe

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2003
    Messages:
    105,198
    Likes Received:
    17
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    What bike?
    How is shifting between gears?
    Does the lever fully disengage the clutch? (When the lever is pulled in and bike in gear, is the bike trying to move forward)?

    If it's an older bike, I'd think the oil change may have dislodged some dirt/sludge which then got redeposited in the tranny.
     
  7. Cannondale

    Cannondale OT Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2007
    Messages:
    87,845
    Likes Received:
    1,920
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    Yamaha 250 cruiser. It's new, this was its second oil change, it's just shy of 4k miles. When it's cold, it shifts fine. I rev-match anyway, so I didn't really notice any difference riding around, only when at a stop and trying to find neutral. I checked the factory service manual, and the clutch lever is adjusted correctly, and it was working without issue before the oil change.

    I bought 3 quarts of Yamaha oil, a new filter and the associated gaskets this morning, so I've got enough oil to do a flush, then a full oil change to get all the Castrol out.
     
  8. Cannondale

    Cannondale OT Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2007
    Messages:
    87,845
    Likes Received:
    1,920
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    Drained the oil, put the Yamaha oil in, rode around my neighborhood a bit. Bike acted fine, found neutral no problem. So, drained that out, changed the filter and put the correct amount of Yamaha oil in so it's all fresh. We'll see how the bike acts tomorrow, but I imagine it will be uneventful at this point.

    Castrol told me I needed a certified mechanic to do a full diagnostic on the bike before they'd continue filing the complaint even. :ugh: They even offered to do an oil sample on their oil, if I got a certified mechanic to check the bike out. Since I already did the oil change before I called them, I thanked the person for their time and that was the end of it.
     
  9. onedownfiveup

    onedownfiveup OT Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2005
    Messages:
    18,277
    Likes Received:
    55
    Location:
    KC
    It wouldn't matter if it's motorcycle oil or not. In theory you should run motorcycle oil however I know tons of people who have only ran automobile oil in their motorcycle without problems.

    I have you checked the shift lever linkage to make sure it's not bent our binding up some where?
     
  10. Cannondale

    Cannondale OT Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2007
    Messages:
    87,845
    Likes Received:
    1,920
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    The only thing that is different between the two is the correct additives to make wet clutches work. Motorcycles with dry clutches, or a separate case for the transmission, don't need engine oil that meets those specifications. I checked the clutch linkage and the adjustment of the arm, and it was within specifications according to the shop manual.




    I did end up riding to work today, and the bike rides great and shifts well. When I got to work, it took the lightest of pressure to get it into neutral while stopped, so it seems that I've solved the problem. :bowdown:
     
  11. Stuntman

    Stuntman New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2015
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    Glad you got it fixed and that it was something simple and cheap.
    I hate wet clutches. I always rode bikes with dry clutches, but they had their own unique problems.
     
  12. Cannondale

    Cannondale OT Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2007
    Messages:
    87,845
    Likes Received:
    1,920
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    Aside from Ducati, do many other manufacturers use dry clutches on bikes?
     
  13. Stuntman

    Stuntman New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2015
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    0
    Harley Davidson. Mine were all dry clutch.

    But I don't know about their new bikes.
     
  14. Snafu

    Snafu more than meets the eye

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2001
    Messages:
    1,417
    Likes Received:
    10
    Location:
    Queens, NY
    Ha, I used that Castrol 10-40 in a suzuki gs500f and had the same problems as you did. Drained it out for Rotella 15-40. No problems since.
     

Share This Page