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Old 06-21-2002, 06:01 AM
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5th Gear Blues

5th Gear Blues
by Courtney Hook

Dick Sommer writes:
I got my Clymer Book this afternoon and the illustration was great. Adjusted clutch at the handle and eliminated the creep. HOWEVER---because I then had the confidence to take it down the road---I found that it would not shift into 5th gear! Tried repeatedly with no luck. Do you have any idea what would cause this? Does it mean that gear is shot or is there another possibility?

This happened to me in the middle of nowhere. If it is the same problem I had, then you can easily fix it. You have to remove the shifter and then open the case on that side where the shifter shaft is coming out of. Underneath that you will find shifter drum that has a metal plate that looks just like a set of fingers. Each finger holds one of the shifter dowels in the drum. I am willing to bet that the 5th gear dowel fell out because the finger managed to bend out of the way. I found my dowel sitting in the bottom of the side cover area. I put it back in it's hole and after straightening the metal plate, bolted it back over the dowels. Then I replaced everything and refilled it with oil. No more problems. Hope that's all it is!

Dick Sommer
You were right about the dowel. Unfortunately the metal plate that holds it in was more than bent out of shape. The finger that holds that particular dowel in was broken off at the tip (just a little bit) so it wouldn't cover the dowel. $10.00 for a new dowel and metal thingy. The problem is it won't be in till the end of next week. So the bike sits in this fantastic weather we are having. Guess I'll have to drink a few beers in the shade.

Thanks much for your tip. It seems you were right on, now hopefully when I put it all together it will work. This is really pushing the limits of my mechanical ability.

Thanks again Courtney!

Courtney Hook
Richard, don't sweat not having 5th gear to drive the bike. I returned home with no 5th gear on the freeway! The difference of revs in the two gears (4th and 5th) is only a 1000 rpm or so. Your bike will still do 70 mph on the freeway in 4th gear and still be well below the redline. Put it back together and have a 4 speed until the parts come in! Then take it back apart and fix it. AND BY THE WAY - FIND that dowel. If it's lying around in the pan
somewhere you don't want it loose in there to get caught up in the tranny and wreck it!!!

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