stuck in gear - VTXOA
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 05-14-2017, 01:39 AM Thread Starter
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stuck in gear

I went to ride today, but as I went to start I couldn't find neutral. Basically, I'm stuck in 2nd gear, maybe 3rd. I have a '02 1800R. It started fine with no odd noises or odd feeling. I was able to slip the clutch and take off from a start, that's why I think it's in 2nd. I don't think I could do that in 3rd. I can shift up and back down to 2nd, but no first or neutral. I've had this bike for about 8 years and have never had any problem shifting before. Any help would be appreciated. I have a trip planned in two weeks.
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 05-14-2017, 01:59 AM
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When is the last time you cleaned and lubed the shifter pivot and linkage?

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There are no stupid questions,
There's just a lot of inquisitive idiots.
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 05-14-2017, 02:02 AM
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The most common problem is the shift linkage. Especially the pivot for the shift lever. Take it apart and clean it, then reassemble with a light coat of grease.. Also check the little ball joints at each end of the linkage rod...
I did mine before I had any shifting problems, and I could really tell a difference...
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 05-14-2017, 05:30 AM
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Mine did same. Removed left side cover plate. Greased all shift points and linkages. My issue was fixed doing that. Helluva scary feeling being stuck in gear. Mine initially got stuck after I had raised shifter up 1 spline as I added floorboards to my C.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 05-14-2017, 07:44 AM
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carefully roll the rubber boots back on the ends of the shifter rods and clean the ball joints with brake cleaner. Repack the ball joints with new grease. Removing the shifter rod makes this easy to do. Remember, one end is a left handed thread.

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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 05-15-2017, 08:40 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks

Thanks! You all gave great advise, as usual. I pulled the cover and cleaned and lubed the shift linkage. Also the shifter pivot point and it is shifting fine now. This a great forum for guys like me who aren't the most knowledgeable wrenchers on motorcycles. Again, thasnks!
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 05-15-2017, 11:13 PM
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I had the same problem being locked out of neutral with my 1800 VTX purchased used last year. The bike only has 5100 miles on it. However, I found that just adjusting the linkage only solved the problem temporarily. I would recommend bleeding your clutch fluid in addition to adjusting and lubricating your linkage. Over time, the clutch fluid, if your bike sits for a while without use like mine did, or you don't change the fluid every year, will break down and sludge is left in the bottom of the reservoir and it gets in the system. It looks light brown, thick and slimy. When you change the fluid, start by soaking up the fluid and sludge in the reservoir. Then clean the bottom out with paper towel and a Q tip. This way, you don't suck more sludge through the system during the bleeding process. I use an OTC Bosch vacuum bleeder with my compressor between 80 lbs and 130 lbs.. Some people use a Mityvac. It's cheaper but the take up reservoir is too small for this job. It gets damaged and will fail if the reservoir gets overfilled and brake fluid gets in the pump mechanism.

As you remove fluid, be sure to add fluid from a freshly opened brake fluid. I use Valvoline DOT 3 &4 brake fluid. Don't empty the reservoir completely on vacuum to prevent air from getting int the line. The compressor assisted vacuum bleeder makes the process really quick and clean. Remember brake fluid is very corrosive. It eats paint for lunch! Cover your bike before staring the job. It's worth it. The most careful person can make a mistake and this is an expensive one.

Since completing the clutch bleeding process after the linkage adjustment, I haven't had the lock out problem since and my shifting is like new.

I hope this writing will help someone who is having a similar problem.
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