3 1/2 Friction disc set

Transmission, clutch, chains and belts
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Perry
Posts: 13
Joined: Thu Mar 27, 2008 10:06 pm
Bikes: 1957 FLH Hand Shift
2015 Ultra Low
Location: Northern California

3 1/2 Friction disc set

#1

Post by Perry » Sat Jul 12, 2008 6:32 pm

Bought my first panhead, a 57 FLH. The bike was about 80% complete when the seller injured his back and was unable to finish. It has a little over 900 miles now and I'm becoming more convinced that the clutch isn't disengaging properly. I've never riden a bike like this so I don't know what's normal.

I'm getting better at hitting neutral before coming to a stop but sometimes in traffic I'll end up stopped while still in gear. Then it's near impossible to get it out of gear and I don't want to force it. The bike wants to creep a little and the idle drops off.

The engine and tranny were rebuilt stock. It has a hand shift and rocker clutch pedal. It has 4 double lined friction discs instead of the 3 1/2 set. I was told this should be OK so I went with it.

I installed it with a new hub and studs and the adjustment seemed to go OK.

How important is it to have the 3 1/2 friction disc set? Are some discs thicker than others?

Thanks in advance for any help you might offer.
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Panacea
Posts: 1827
Joined: Fri May 24, 2002 1:00 am
Bikes: 64FL 99FLHR 01FXSTD
Location: Mpls. MN.

#2

Post by Panacea » Sun Jul 13, 2008 3:51 am

Perry, Nice bike! I'm sure you've read thru the manual about how to do the adjustments, even the part about how the actuating lever should just hit the tranny cover with the pedal fully disengaged (heel down). And when the toe pedal is down you should have 1/8" play in the brake rod/actuating lever connection. I still have clutch issues with mine from time to time and somtimes I think she just likes the attention,....Mike

VT

#3

Post by VT » Sun Jul 13, 2008 4:12 am

It has 4 double lined friction discs instead of the 3 1/2 set.
I installed it with a new hub and studs and the adjustment seemed to go OK.
How important is it to have the 3 1/2 friction disc set? Are some discs thicker than others?
You have the '68-up set up, and those double sided friction discs are thicker to make up for the missing half-plate thickness.
The books all describe having the same 31/32 distance between the inner edge of the pressure plate and the outer edge of the releasing disc. Doesn't matter if you're using a later four disc, or an early three discs + 1/2 plate.
When your diagnosing anything thing else, there's no printed material to refer to.
Pull the friction discs and drive plates out and have a look. Having the idling slow down is an indicator something is heating up.
Read the factory '59-69 Pan manual and make sure the drive plate is true and studs are straight, that the plates move freely. Look for scuff marks anywhere.
3 stud hub or 5?
Last edited by VT on Sun Jul 13, 2008 4:33 am, edited 2 times in total.

Perry
Posts: 13
Joined: Thu Mar 27, 2008 10:06 pm
Bikes: 1957 FLH Hand Shift
2015 Ultra Low
Location: Northern California

#4

Post by Perry » Sun Jul 13, 2008 4:29 am

Mike, thanks.

Yea, I went through the exersize a few times using the Panhead Service Manual. I should check it again before spending any more money though.

I was hoping someone could tell me yes or no on that disc set. Are you running the 3 1/2?

- Perry

Panacea
Posts: 1827
Joined: Fri May 24, 2002 1:00 am
Bikes: 64FL 99FLHR 01FXSTD
Location: Mpls. MN.

#5

Post by Panacea » Sun Jul 13, 2008 3:02 pm

Perry, I've got a 4 disk setup with an extra steel . (that's what it came with) it works OK but I've experamented with the set-up and have found a little less stroke on the clutch actuator arm helps eliminate chatter for some reason, instead of 4 1/4" from the ratchet top I'm using about 3 1/2". I know you have a hand shift, and it sounds like you may have gummy disks or worn out hub studs. Has it worked well since you've had it? or is this a new development?

Motorcyclemike
Posts: 222
Joined: Fri Apr 04, 2008 6:25 am
Bikes: Knucklehead and a Triumph
Location: North East Kansas

Just wondering IF ?

#6

Post by Motorcyclemike » Mon Jul 14, 2008 1:56 am


Are you Running a Chain or a Belt in the Primary....if its a Belt then you need the long Clutch hub roller kit....or the Clutch "Tamer"....in fact even if you Run a primary front chain....the "Tamer' will improve the shifting and prevent creep at Stop lights.....by Not letting the clutch Hub roll off and compress the clutch plates when your heel down and In Gear.

MooootorCycleMike

Perry
Posts: 13
Joined: Thu Mar 27, 2008 10:06 pm
Bikes: 1957 FLH Hand Shift
2015 Ultra Low
Location: Northern California

#7

Post by Perry » Mon Jul 14, 2008 3:39 am

So THAT's what the clutch is supposed to feel like.

Apparently I really didn't have a very good understanding of the adjustment procedure, all three adjustments were off. I think I made the pressure plate-to-spring collar adjustment with the clutch disengaged.

I went ahead and pulled the friction discs and steel plates out for inspection. There was a little grease on one steel plate, I probably over-greased the roller bearings(?). There was no oil leaking from the hub nut.

I didn't notice any scuffing but I'm certainly not getting 100% contact.

I should have mentioned I installed a new 3 finger hub when I converted the primary to an 8MM BDL belt drive before I ever ran the bike.

After reassembly and proper adjustment there was a HUGE improvement.

Panacea, VT and Motorcyclemike, thanks a million for your responses. As I rode up to the lake this evening the odometer rolled through 1000 miles which brings me to my next question about coverting to synthetic oil. That's probably a hornet's nest waiting to be stirred up so I'll save it for another posting.

- Perry

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