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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I found this on the vulcanbagger.com site:

Transmission Repair - 2nd Gear Problem. - Vulcan Bagger Forums

it details the options for repairing the transmission issues known for the VN1600.

I will find out this winter how bad the damage is inside the tranny on my 03 VN1600 Classic. I'll likely apply the changes listed in the attached post on vulcanbagger. Also, a friend of mine has built drag bikes using stock transmissions, so I'll work with him to see if any upgrades (like under-cutting the dogs on the gears) can be applied.

What is clear to me, is that there are design issues with the transmissions on the VN1500 and VN1600. I have read about many Vulcans with 2nd and 3rd issues. Before I bought the VN1600, I found a VN1500 cheap, but no 1st gear. Certainly, the Vulcan V-twins are not performance bikes, they're big cruisers meant to be ridden casually. They are not drag bikes built to take sloppy shifting and hammered actions. Perhaps riders that mod their Vulcans with intake and exhaust mods, Power Commanders, then feel they need to prove the Vulcan power over the more expensive Harleys, and do the damage.
 
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