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I've got a YZF 600 and am suffering from a sore hand after long rides as the clutch is fairly stiff. Now the question, is HOW stiff should it be. In comparison to my front brake lever, its very different.

Any comparisons to give me an idea if this is normal or not??
:lurking
 
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there are a lot of reasons for a heavy clutch pull.

the most obvious is lack of lubrication in the cable. have you lubed it lately?

if it is tensioned too tight, it will cause a very heavy pull as well.
 

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As I recall the YZF had a nice light clutch pull for a 600. It's likely that your cable needs to be cleaned and lubed to restore the snappiness to it. If it feels less than snappy this is likely your trouble. It's also possible that your cable is frayed and one of the strands of the cable is broken and thus causing the need for the extra effort.

How to clean and lube your cable-

First off go and buy a can of WD40 and a spray can of cable lube and one of the clamp on gizmos for sealing off the end so you can squirt the fluids down the cable.

Now line up the slots in the adjuster barrel and lock ring with the slot in the clutch lever perch. Pull the lever and when you release it pull on the cable jacket to draw the jacket out of the barrel and slide the cable out of the slot. Work the cable end out of the lever. With the free play you should be able to work the cable end out of the lever down on the other end by the clutch activator lever.

Now you can check on how gooey the cable is and look for any frayed strands. If any at all are frayed then it's new cable time.

Assuming the cable is OK but it feels stiff then it's time to lube. Clamp the gizmo on the lever end of the cable and hook up the WD40 can. Blast some down the cable until it pours out the other end. A paper towel down there is a good idea. With some WD in the cable and coming out the other end I'll bet it's pretty black. Undo the gizmo from the cable and work the cable back and forth. Hook up the gizmo and spray down some more WD. Work it again. Repeat all this until the WD comes out only slightly grey or clean.

NOW it's time to use the cable lube. This lube is a light oil only. Using the gizmo spray some of that down there until it blows the WD out the other end. Let the excess drain out onto another paper towel.

When it's not running out any more check the cable operation. I'll bet it's delightfully easy to push and pull the cable now.

Hook up the bottom end of the cable. For the top end put the cable end into the lever and then get some slack by using some pliers or some other trick to operate the clutch lever down on the clutch bell so you get your slack in the cable. Work the cable through the lever slot and put the end of the jacket back in the barrel adjuster and let go down below.

Another trick is a small shot of chain lube on both the cable ends. That'll ensure that the ends can rotate decently in the clutch lever and down on the activator arm without putting a lot of bending stress on the cable.

While you're at it put a small shot of the chain lube onto the clutch lever pivot bolt. Or better yet while the cable is out pull off the lever, clean the bearing and bolt and lightly grease the bearing in the lever and the bolt and re-assemble.

With all this done the clutch is going to be as good as it gets. If it's still too much for you then it's time to start exercising with one of the spring gizmos to work on your grip strength. But I'm willing to bet that it's the cable and lever that's gooped up.
 

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doug said:
...if it is tensioned too tight, it will cause a very heavy pull as well.
You got me on this one Doug. What do you mean by that?
 

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What I want to know is how many words per minute can you type Bruce?

Zed hooligan ride sometime soon with Mr. Murphy may be in order too!
 

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flowrider said:
What I want to know is how many words per minute can you type Bruce?

Zed hooligan ride sometime soon with Mr. Murphy may be in order too!
About 50 or so when I'm cookin'. But there's errors that make me have to go back.

Who would have thought that the typing class I took in High School so I could meet girls would have turned out to be one of the more useful electives I ever took.... :D

I typed all that more or less for practice. When I saw what I'd done I thought " This belongs in the Simple Service Procedures FAQ" and so I went to put it there and found a previous version of the same topic by ME! But it had a few different tricks like the pliers on the lever bit so I added it to my original post.
 
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TeeTee said:
You got me on this one Doug. What do you mean by that?
i dunno bruce, maybe it's just something i've experienced on my bikes. i found that adjusting to minimize the free play you are supposed to have feels like the pull gets harder.
 

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doug said:
i dunno bruce, maybe it's just something i've experienced on my bikes. i found that adjusting to minimize the free play you are supposed to have feels like the pull gets harder.
Can't honestly say that I've ever felt anything like that after adjusting the free play. It may be that our fingers are differnet enough in length that this is the difference. Adjusting them has put the lever out of the "power range" of the hand?

cyclestarter, don't assume that this is all you need to do. If your bike is a couple of years old then your first priority is cleaning the cable and only THEN should you play with the amount of free play to adjust the lever so you can put the critical portion of the movement within your "power grip" range.
 
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