Clutch cable snapped, new one arriving in 2 days, how to grease it down?

No H2O

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After watching this "how-to" video, Marky advises greasing down the clutch cable before installation.

This tells me the clutch cable I ordered yesterday direct from BDM will not come pre-lubed?

Question 1: How to I get the lube onto the cable within the sheath?
Question 2: What is the best lube to get?
 

awg

Well-Known Member
When I did my cable, I just put grease in the ball bearing or ramp as its called. That's it. Just installed the cable as is.
 

woodbutcher

Mr. Old Fart member #145
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the lube helps keep the steel cable from cutting into the outer sheath and causing binding and eventually snapping. makes the clutch lever a little easier to pull, also.
 

No H2O

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the lube helps keep the steel cable from cutting into the outer sheath and causing binding and eventually snapping. makes the clutch lever a little easier to pull, also.
How often do you lube your cables? (Throttle clutch, brake)
I assume the same lube can be used for all three?
 

SKOGDOG

One of the old ones.
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As Mr. Knowles says...Dri-Slide . Available everywhere, esp. eBay. The needle applicator is especially nice. Shake well before using. Clutch and throttle cable use?—yes. I’d stand correction, but think all BDM brakes are hydraulic and don’t have a cable.
 

Sven

Well-Known Member
The meguyveer throttle/clutch cable lube tool in a pinch: Take a plastic sandwich bag, cut the corner off enough to tightly snug it over the outer cable. Take duct, paint tape, what's ever handy, and wrap the cable and bag so you close off the cut, plus, the shallower the funnel point at the outer cable, meaning, you want the oil level more at the hole, not down the outer cable and have a useless puddle below the cable's hole end. Take a paper plate, used coffee cup, used water bottle and place the other cable end over/into the oil receiver mentioned. Push the inner cable into the receiver so the inner cable at the funneled baggie end, can be used as a pump to push the oil down the cable; as you pour so very little to trickle down the cable internally. Hold the cable vertical because the oil is going to drip out of the other end into the receiver. The thinner the oil the less arm pump holding the cable.
 

No H2O

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I hooked everything up but the adjustment process isn't going well.

At 3:50 of Marky's video here:

his clutch pushrod spins freely until there's the slight tension he describes and then he backs out 1/4 turn per the manual.

I loosened my cable at the cable adjustment midpoint all the way before starting.
I took the nut off but my clutch pushrod doesn't spin freely at all. Thinking it was past the point of tension I loosened it and it still wouldn't loosen freely for many turns. Then it did start spinning freely and came out after a turn or two.
So I stuck it back in and it was only a couple turns before it was hard to turn, not enough to be a solid connection.

I noticed in Marky's video he spun that thing many times around before tension was present.

So I tightened it a few more turns just so the rod wouldn't fall out and followed the cable adjustment procedure at the cable midpoint but the lever ended up being too tense to pull in.
So I started to loosen the cable at the midpoint some and the lever then became completely loose up to a point and then too tense to pull further.

What am I doing wrong?
 

woodbutcher

Mr. Old Fart member #145
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pull the rod back out and inspect the tip. it should be completely smooth and conical with no grooves or discoloration. this rod, unfortunately, is only case hardened, so with normal wear and, heaven forbid, over-tightening, it will wear through the case hardening and at that point, it starts wearing quickly. thus the grooves and color change. if this is the case, replace the rod, and check the diaphragm in the throwout bearing. when re-inserting the rod, put a light coat of grease on the rod and the tip. this is just something to check. good luck.
 

No H2O

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pull the rod back out and inspect the tip. it should be completely smooth and conical with no grooves or discoloration. this rod, unfortunately, is only case hardened, so with normal wear and, heaven forbid, over-tightening, it will wear through the case hardening and at that point, it starts wearing quickly. thus the grooves and color change. if this is the case, replace the rod, and check the diaphragm in the throwout bearing. when re-inserting the rod, put a light coat of grease on the rod and the tip. this is just something to check. good luck.
The rod looks fine. It has grease on it.
The rod itself isn't the problem it's the threading of the rod going into the hole that's tight.
 

Sven

Well-Known Member
Say all is lubed and, cough, it assembles only one way: The quick 'ramp it home' check; is having the threads hidden at the center cable adjuster. This shortens the outer cable. Then a grab at the clutch lever to take out any outer cable hanging up, meaning, take out the slack and hold it there. The screw adjuster and nut are loose, the allen is in one hand, the other hand is ever so lightly holding the slack so the allen screw can be turned out (ccw) so as the screw spins free, the lever keeps dropping towards the grip.

Screw the allen clockwise (cw), to take out the free spins, the lever is lightly held, the allen screw stops so as not to raise the lever. Release lever. Turn allen screw out 1/4 turn and tighten lock nut. By first pulling the slack out of the shorter outer cable, this pushed the ramp as flat and as deep into pockets of the balls will travel with the inner cable, meaning, all the way 'home'... lever grab style.

At the center cable adjust, run the outer cable longer so it takes up the slack at the lever. With a finger at the end of the lever, and as lightly as the index can pull, adjust the center a flat or two until there is no to little gap as possible; where the lever meeting the perch= Hair Trigger.
 

No H2O

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Say all is lubed and, cough, it assembles only one way: The quick 'ramp it home' check; is having the threads hidden at the center cable adjuster. This shortens the outer cable. Then a grab at the clutch lever to take out any outer cable hanging up, meaning, take out the slack and hold it there. The screw adjuster and nut are loose, the allen is in one hand, the other hand is ever so lightly holding the slack so the allen screw can be turned out (ccw) so as the screw spins free, the lever keeps dropping towards the grip.

Screw the allen clockwise (cw), to take out the free spins, the lever is lightly held, the allen screw stops so as not to raise the lever. Release lever. Turn allen screw out 1/4 turn and tighten lock nut. By first pulling the slack out of the shorter outer cable, this pushed the ramp as flat and as deep into pockets of the balls will travel with the inner cable, meaning, all the way 'home'... lever grab style.

At the center cable adjust, run the outer cable longer so it takes up the slack at the lever. With a finger at the end of the lever, and as lightly as the index can pull, adjust the center a flat or two until there is no to little gap as possible; where the lever meeting the perch= Hair Trigger.
Let me see if I understand this correctly:

1. Remove the pushrod locknut from the clutch pushrod. Remove the Allen pushrod itself.

2. Fully tighten the center cable adjuster.
- No threads are visible.
- Minimal outer sheath length.
- Maximum slack in the cable.

3. Grab and secure the clutch lever to the hand grip.

4. Start screwing in the Allen pushrod clockwise (cw).

5. As soon as the clutch lever wants to leave the hand grip, stop screwing in the Allen pushrod.

6. Back out a 1/4 turn (ccw).

7. Tighten the pushrod locknut.

8. Loosen the center cable adjuster until the clutch lever is 1/16" from the perch.
- Threads start becoming visible
- Outer sheath length is expanding.
- Less slack in the cable.

9. Tighten the locknut on the center cable adjuster.

10. Slide the boot back over the center cable adjuster.

If this is correct, any recommendations on lube for the threading?
 

Sven

Well-Known Member
1. No. Loosen locknut. Run allen screw out a few turns. Nothing is removed on an adjustment but a derby cover or some dust cover.

2. No. Fully loosen cable adjuster.
- No threads are visible.
- Minimal outer sheath length.
- Maximum slack in the cable.

3. No. Grab clutch lever and follow to the grip as you unscrew the allen screw.

4. Start screwing in the Allen pushrod clockwise ( ccw).

5. Yes. As soon as the clutch lever wants to leave the hand grip, stop screwing in the Allen pushrod screw. Note: The loose inner cable may need the outer cable to grow (show threads) so the lever leaves the grip. Otherwise, you sent the ramp all the way home, you are now bottomed out anyway. To feel you are home, grow the outer cable so the lever begins to leave the grip. Retest both clock positions so you get the feel of what home feels like, Once home, follow #6.

6. Yes, back out a 1/4 turn (ccw).

7. Yes, tighten the pushrod locknut.

8. Correct. Loosen the center cable adjuster until the clutch lever is 1/16" from the perch.
- Threads start becoming visible
- Outer sheath length is expanding.
- Less slack in the cable.

9. Correct. Tighten the locknut on the center cable adjuster.

10. Yes. Slide the boot back over the center cable adjuster.

Yes. Engine oil/ATF/sewing oil. Anything that flows and will not rust. Plastic internal tube around steel cable? No lube needed.
 

woodbutcher

Mr. Old Fart member #145
Staff member
Lifetime Supporting Member
Supporting Member
use maybe some anti-seize or some red waterproof grease, JUST A LITTLE.

this is for the threads of the adjuster only.
 

Sven

Well-Known Member
RESTATE:
When you back the lock nut off the allen screw, turn the allen screw in, the direction of the lever is going to move away from the grip. Restated again, when you screw in the allen, you push the rod which pushes the ramp, which pushes the the cable back, which moves the lever away from the grip.

So when I said to take some slack out of the outer cable, it is so you can feel the lever move from the grip, because there is so much slack anyway, the lever won't move when the screw stops moving, which sent the ramp home. It means, the lever moving away from the grip says you are moving in the clockwise turn that stops and then you turn it 1/4 out and lock it up.
 

TapioK

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Supporting Member
at this point I would forget about the cable and take the actuator apart to see wtf is going on with the threads on rod and/or on ball and ramp set. would the hand lever be like rock solid, that would tell you put it together the “cable arm” in wrong position...
 

No H2O

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Supporting Member
at this point I would forget about the cable and take the actuator apart to see wtf is going on with the threads on rod and/or on ball and ramp set. would the hand lever be like rock solid, that would tell you put it together the “cable arm” in wrong position...
Loosened everything, started re-tightening the allen, lever never wanted to come forward, couldn't tighten the allen any more.
Took everything apart, confirmed the cable was still properly set in the ball.

The threading was killing me, this tool saved that part of the day
hdx-brushes-80-718-111-64_400_compressed.jpg

Cleaned the threading on both the rod and the hole and it started spinning much more freely.
Shoved the rod in the hole and screwed until I felt some tension and observed the lever start to move away from the handgrip.

Did the adjustment at the center of the cable using a penny as shown in Markys video, the clutch lever was tough to pull but manageable. I loosened it at the center of the cable a little more so now I have more than a penny's worth of play from the perch but feels ok, just a little stiff.

A new problem ...

Turn on the ignition, and I'm able to shift through the gears except it won't go into 1st gear >:-(
The neutral light will go off when I depress the clutch pedal but it bounces back to neutral and won't click into 1st gear.

I attempt to start the bike in neutral with the clutch lever pulled towards the handgrip and I get the machinegun-like clicking. Not sure if that's a problem with the gearing or if my battery died from sitting in the cold for the better part of the week sans a tinder.
 

TapioK

Well-Known Member
Supporting Member
well, if you just try to go thru gears bike standing there and engine not running it’s not gonna work. you need to rock the bike back and forth to make the gears move a bit...
don’t remember what year your bike is, but lever tends to be a bit heavy. newer bikes have “easy pull” .. Baker nowadays being what it is (not too much love for Big Dogs) don’t have them, but Andrew Barnes (use google) is in process to get some made....
that starter noise Sounds like empty battery... Don’t fuck the EHC by jumping with car engine running.
 
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