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I have a 08 Custom w/ <2k miles (700 of those are mine in the past month. previous owner just garaged it). I've noticed an odd, intermittent problem. Sometimes while down shifting nothing happens. The clutch is disengaged, and the bike doesn't stall or roll, but stomping on the shifter does nothing. I have to release the clutch just until the friction zone begins and then it will shift. Sometimes I have to repeat the double clutching for every downshift at that stop. Sometimes it works fine after the initial sticking.

It doesn't happen every (or even most) times, but it is a bit troubling. I haven't been able to notice a pattern, other than it's when I try to downshift from 4-5 to 1 at a stop light. Upshifting works fine.

I haven't changed the fluid in the clutch cylinder, and there were no maintenance records to indicate it's ever been changed. Could that be the cause of the issue, or should I look elsewhere?
 

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could be the clutch is not set up right and the cable just needs to be re adjusted ,you
don't really need a clutch to up shift, the drop in rpm's allows the gear to "snick" in much like an non synchronized transmission.
 

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I have a 08 Custom w/ <2k miles (700 of those are mine in the past month. previous owner just garaged it). I've noticed an odd, intermittent problem. Sometimes while down shifting nothing happens. The clutch is disengaged, and the bike doesn't stall or roll, but stomping on the shifter does nothing. I have to release the clutch just until the friction zone begins and then it will shift. Sometimes I have to repeat the double clutching for every downshift at that stop. Sometimes it works fine after the initial sticking.

It doesn't happen every (or even most) times, but it is a bit troubling. I haven't been able to notice a pattern, other than it's when I try to downshift from 4-5 to 1 at a stop light. Upshifting works fine.

I haven't changed the fluid in the clutch cylinder, and there were no maintenance records to indicate it's ever been changed. Could that be the cause of the issue, or should I look elsewhere?
I have the same issue. I have narrowed it down to down shifting at high speeds. I don't catch gear 1, but go to nut.

I'll have my clutch cable checked

Thanks!
 

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I have a 08 Custom w/ <2k miles (700 of those are mine in the past month. previous owner just garaged it). I've noticed an odd, intermittent problem. Sometimes while down shifting nothing happens. The clutch is disengaged, and the bike doesn't stall or roll, but stomping on the shifter does nothing. I have to release the clutch just until the friction zone begins and then it will shift. Sometimes I have to repeat the double clutching for every downshift at that stop. Sometimes it works fine after the initial sticking.

It doesn't happen every (or even most) times, but it is a bit troubling. I haven't been able to notice a pattern, other than it's when I try to downshift from 4-5 to 1 at a stop light. Upshifting works fine.

I haven't changed the fluid in the clutch cylinder, and there were no maintenance records to indicate it's ever been changed. Could that be the cause of the issue, or should I look elsewhere?
There's no clutch cylinder on a Custom so you don't have to look there. Most motorcycles do not downshift well when standing still. Generally the downshifting is done while rolling to a stop, 5-4-3-2-1 then while stopped, up to neutral. There is always the need to keep the shift lever lubricated and the two heim joints. Marine grease for the shift lever and oil from a spray can for the heim joints. Don't use WD40 for a lubricant but you can use it to get rid of any grunge and water then lube with oil.
 

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I agree. You must do your downshifting before the cycle stops. The tranny needs a little motion to work. Also make sure you are making a complete stroke on each shift. (letting off the shifter so it can grab the next gear). It's easy to hold the shifter half way and not letting it return all the way......that will cause the missed gear problem.
 

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I admit that if you stop completely and then try to downshift it is much harder and you have to work the clutch lever to do it. But I have the same problem sometimes even while rolling to a stop. Just letting out on the clutch some usually does the trick. I figure it is just a bug in the way these little transmissions work. It isn't like a car where you are physically moving the gear to a different position. With the bikes, there is this little fork & sprocket thingy that works its way around in a sequence as you work the peg. It can only work in sequence like the column shifters on old cars. If it gets slightly out of place it won't go either way and I think it needs he clutch to move things around so it can get back in sequence. I guess it is just part of the fun of riding motorcycles.
 

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The slightest resistance in the shift linkage or a misplaced boot toe touching the shift lever will keep the linkage from going back to center and allowing the next shift, either up or down. Since we tend to be lazy with our feet during downshifting, resting the boot on the lever is quite common. At the same time, and I can't emphasize it more, greasing the shift lever and oiling the heim joints is an absolute must at least twice during a riding season. Nuff said LOL
 

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I think it has to do with the neutral finder. It has a centifugal component so it only works at a stop (or very low speed). I'm not sure just how it works, so I can't explain why, but I've heard that is what causes this phenomenon. I've just gotten used to shifting all the way down to 1 while still rolling. If something changes (e.g. the light turns green while I'm still going 15 mph), I can always upshift before I let the clutch out.
 

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I've just gotten used to shifting all the way down to 1 while still rolling. If something changes (e.g. the light turns green while I'm still going 15 mph), I can always upshift before I let the clutch out.
Same here. While rolling, pull in the clutch, stomp the toe until I'm in first.

If you do stop in a higher gear, you may need to rock the bike a little to get the gears to mesh properly for downshift.
 

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At the same time, and I can't emphasize it more, greasing the shift lever and oiling the heim joints is an absolute must at least twice during a riding season. Nuff said LOL
Okay, you got me, where am I supposed to grease the shift lever and what is a heim joint? I have been doing my best to make sure my maintenance is all up to snuff. But this is a new one on me. Pictures may be helpful.
 
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