Complete clutch adjustment by the book, with scanned manual page. Below the notes, I have inserted the scanned image of the Suzuki Service Manual. Enjoy!
Yes, I've read many of the relatively recent threads on clutches, but it is seldom noted that minor adjustments just affect one of the three areas of the clutch system. There is a huge difference between a complete clutch adjustment and anything less. Most of the very helpful people like MistressK are trying to give you a bite-size quick solution, presuming that the rest of the system is within tolerances and that you know how to tell when they aren't. That's very helpful and great in certain situations, but the more of these bikes I ride, the more need I see for a real and complete adjustment.
Between a year of battling Cancer and being so busy working since then, for a long while I had relied on the clutch adjustment done by the dealer when I had my last tires installed. To quote the mechanic: "I adjusted your clutch, no charge. It sucked long, hard and deep!" I had begun to rationalize that maybe I ride too hard...It does have high mileage, [sound familiar?] I didn't like the clutch so much, but it was the ride up to the HUB in May that convinced me not to bother getting used to what they thought was a clutch adjustment.
After reading through the clutch posts of the last year or so, I see what the problem often is...partial adjustments and not using blue loc-tite OR depending on dealership mechanics who regularly look for that "short-cut".
Since I finally had the time tonight and my pain levels were lower, I did a complete adjustment exactly as specified in the Suzuki Service Manual and I now have what feels like a new clutch that's broken in again. Prior to the last year and 1/2, I had been doing it every 6 months or so, since I ride every day that it isn't pouring down rain. Letting the dealership mechanic adjust it just didn't work out, cause he didn't do the whole process.
not enough. cable housing end,
not enough. Since there are 3 sections to this system, they all need to be adjusted to make sure you get that new clutch feel and real grab.
It only takes about 15 minutes and will make a world of difference in almost every case where a complete adjustment has been more than 5,000 miles past.
I'll spell it out here, since sometimes the Rusks site isn't working and besides, why not have the whole thing right here within the thread?
Here it is:
By the book, the slack at the lever should be 10-15mm
, which is 0.4"- 0.6", or up to approx. 9/16" if you prefer to think of it that way. The cable end should be screwed in toward the lever as far as it will go up against the locking wheel and still let the locking wheel have enough threads to lock. This will give you enough room to make a fine-tuning for your particular feel.
At the far end of the cable wire itself; [under the center of the 3 left side covers] is where the most important adjustment is made.
After loosening the outer locking nut, you use a narrow blade screwdriver & turn that screw counter-clockwise 3 turns or so. Then turn it inward slowly till you feel resistance become tangible. Back it off 1/4 turn and note that position so you can make sure it stays there. Then tighten up the locking nut again, without overtightening it.
At the bottom end of the cable shielding, where it goes into the case cover: The double nuts there are another key component. The top one locks the cable slack at the bottom end and really benefits from some blue loc-tite. That keeps it from vibrating loose and losing the adjustment.
In my case, the cable wire was also dry and I used a little white lithium grease. You can't use WD-40 or other penetrating oils, since they uh, penetrate and break down the metal as well as the shielding liner. Also lube the bottom end of the cable wire and the moving parts of the area behind what's labeled at parts "3 & 4".
I can't believe I ever stopped doing this myself. The dealership never did a complete adjustment and I know that because the results from simply doing it by the book are conclusively obvious and a huge improvement!