Author Topic: Four Speed Clutch  (Read 932 times)

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Offline rkrcpa

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Four Speed Clutch
« on: March 14, 2019, 02:29:12 PM »
I'm finally getting the Shovel back on the road after a long sleep...(apparently everyone who said I wouldn't ride the Shovel after I bought a Twin Cam was correct) I need to replace the clutch. The clutch has given me 40,000 miles so I guess it's about time. My question is, the plates have worn grooves in the pins on the hub and I think the liner is probably shot as well.

What is the current best thinking on these clutches? Should I stick with the 3 stud or get a 5 stud? Does Brand matter? Is there even more than one manufacturer?

Offline david lee

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Re: Four Speed Clutch
« Reply #1 on: March 14, 2019, 02:35:53 PM »
my hd  mech changed mine to 5 stud on his recomendation

Offline dusty1

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Re: Four Speed Clutch
« Reply #2 on: March 14, 2019, 06:16:23 PM »
 :up:

Offline carioux2008

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Re: Four Speed Clutch
« Reply #3 on: March 15, 2019, 12:59:15 PM »
I've got a Drag Specialties 5 finger hub in mine. Works great. I don't think there's any real advantage in going 3 vs 5 fingers. They both adjust pretty easily, I can adjust mine in about 5 minutes and be meticulous about it. The service manual states you can file the grooves smooth, but for 100 bones you can just get a new one and have no worries. 3 finger or 5 finger will work just fine on a relatively stock bike as long as it's adjusted properly. 1-1/32 inch from the pressure plate to the machined area on top of the springs. Even all around. Good luck with it.

Offline JW113

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Re: Four Speed Clutch
« Reply #4 on: March 15, 2019, 01:16:08 PM »
Agree with carioux, 3 or 5 will work just fine. Although I don't really see what the 5 finger brings to the table, unless you are using springs with so much pressure that they would bend the stock sheet metal pressure plate. I'm using a 3 finger hub with one of those aluminum pressure plates, along with a Ramm Jet clutch retainer. Clutch action is perfect, no creep at lights and no problem finding neutral. For especially stock use, I think the 3 finger is great if you use these other parts.

-JW
2004 FLHRS   1977 FLH Shovelhead  1992 FLSTC
1945 Indian Chief   1978 XL Bobber

Offline guppymech

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Re: Four Speed Clutch
« Reply #5 on: March 15, 2019, 03:28:57 PM »
I betcha that on the 5 studs at least one nut is always loose.  3 stud is like a 3 legged stool, always planted.  Use whatever you like.
'84 FXE, '02 883R

Offline JW113

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Re: Four Speed Clutch
« Reply #6 on: March 15, 2019, 04:50:10 PM »
Heh, heh, I started to mention that but deleted. Didn't want to hear otherwise from the guys that actually have 5 finger hubs. But from a purely mechanical point of view, that would be the case if the adjusting nuts only allow 1/2 turn between lock dents. If you had a pressure plate that didn't have the detents, and use those "aero" type lock nut with the plastic friction lock, I suppose you could dial all 5 in to be pretty even. But I'm still thinking that if you use a very stiff (i.e. aluminum) pressure plate, what does the 5 finger hub bring to the party? 3 & 5 hubs both have 10 fingers taking the engine torque.

Just asking!

-JW
2004 FLHRS   1977 FLH Shovelhead  1992 FLSTC
1945 Indian Chief   1978 XL Bobber

Online crock

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Re: Four Speed Clutch
« Reply #7 on: March 16, 2019, 05:56:49 AM »
Heh, heh, I started to mention that but deleted. Didn't want to hear otherwise from the guys that actually have 5 finger hubs. But from a purely mechanical point of view, that would be the case if the adjusting nuts only allow 1/2 turn between lock dents. If you had a pressure plate that didn't have the detents, and use those "aero" type lock nut with the plastic friction lock, I suppose you could dial all 5 in to be pretty even. But I'm still thinking that if you use a very stiff (i.e. aluminum) pressure plate, what does the 5 finger hub bring to the party? 3 & 5 hubs both have 10 fingers taking the engine torque.

Just asking!

-JW

The only benefit I could ever see on a 5 nut hub is you now have 5 studs secured on the outer end of the hub that might maybe possibly help keep it from twisting maybe. But if your at that point with your power level it's time for an upgrade to a Rivera pro or some other aftermarket clutch.  Just my 2 cents
« Last Edit: March 16, 2019, 02:58:08 PM by FSG »
Crock

Offline david lee

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Re: Four Speed Clutch
« Reply #8 on: March 16, 2019, 02:47:25 PM »
next time im at the mech im going to ask him,the reason i replaced the hud is that someone had cross threaded the studs

Offline carioux2008

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Re: Four Speed Clutch
« Reply #9 on: March 18, 2019, 09:46:05 AM »
I betcha that on the 5 studs at least one nut is always loose.  3 stud is like a 3 legged stool, always planted.  Use whatever you like.

I've got a 5-finger hub, and ill admit one of the nuts is partially loose, but still retained by the raised portion on the plate. I've heard of some guys cutting another groove in the nut to get it tighter, though I don't see the real purpose. The only improvement I can see that the 5-finger hub provides is limiting the amount of flex the plate can have, which I would imagine is amplified when using heavy duty springs.

Offline Mule

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Re: Four Speed Clutch
« Reply #10 on: March 18, 2019, 11:44:53 AM »
 Used be called Talon , The best upgrade you can get for an old shovel clutch without breaking the bank   https://www.jpcycles.com/product/630-407/sifton-diaphragm-clutch-conversion-kit

Offline remington007

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Re: Four Speed Clutch
« Reply #11 on: March 18, 2019, 12:56:12 PM »
I went with the York Clutch that Lowbrow Customs sells, best thing i ever did to my Shovel. Yes i know its a import copy of a Pro Clutch. (They were perpetually back ordered at the time i needed a new clutch). It comes with a very stiff spring, i substituted a pre 1998 EVO stock spring to lighten the pull.

Offline Julio

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Re: Four Speed Clutch
« Reply #12 on: March 18, 2019, 04:19:34 PM »
Used be called Talon , The best upgrade you can get for an old shovel clutch without breaking the bank   https://www.jpcycles.com/product/630-407/sifton-diaphragm-clutch-conversion-kit

 :agree:

Online 76shuvlinoff

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Re: Four Speed Clutch
« Reply #13 on: March 18, 2019, 06:05:39 PM »
I put a Rivera Pro behind a 93" mill, do they even make those clutches anymore? Anyhow, I haven't touched it in over 30K miles.
Being defenseless does not make you more safe.

Offline Hillside Motorcycle

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Re: Four Speed Clutch
« Reply #14 on: March 19, 2019, 02:56:39 AM »
Those Rivera Pro Clutch units makes folks wonder why they waited so long to install one.
Otto Knowbetter sez, "Even a fish wouldn't get caught if he kept his mouth shut"

Offline billbuilds

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Re: Four Speed Clutch
« Reply #15 on: March 19, 2019, 04:54:28 AM »
Those Rivera Pro Clutch units makes folks wonder why they waited so long to install one.

    :agree:

     Looks like the Pro Clutch is alive under a new name. Parts too. https://americanprimemfginc.com/product/comp-master-clutch-kit/

Offline JW113

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Re: Four Speed Clutch
« Reply #16 on: March 19, 2019, 08:19:13 AM »
"Gone are the days of clutch slippage, creeping and hard to get into neutral frustration! "


I guess I must be the luckiest guy on the planet. My shovel clutch doesn't have any of that. I sure hate to throw money at fixing something that isn't broken, so will stay with the stock clutch for now.

-JW
2004 FLHRS   1977 FLH Shovelhead  1992 FLSTC
1945 Indian Chief   1978 XL Bobber

Offline rkrcpa

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Re: Four Speed Clutch
« Reply #17 on: March 19, 2019, 08:55:18 AM »
"Gone are the days of clutch slippage, creeping and hard to get into neutral frustration! "


I guess I must be the luckiest guy on the planet. My shovel clutch doesn't have any of that. I sure hate to throw money at fixing something that isn't broken, so will stay with the stock clutch for now.

-JW

This is why I asked my original question. After all these years I've never had an issue with the stock clutch, just wondering if the grass is greener.

Offline JW113

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Re: Four Speed Clutch
« Reply #18 on: March 19, 2019, 12:23:28 PM »
Pure speculation on my part here, so forgive the non-authoritative response. I think for bone stock or slightly warmed over applications (Stage 1?), the stock clutch does OK. Especially if you do the simple mods like Ramjet retainer and aluminum pressure plate. If you go down the path of increasing the power of the motor, the stock clutch probably starts becoming marginal at best. To hold the increased torque, you need heavier clutch springs or crank down on the stock ones. And that brings with it distortion to the sheet metal pressure plate, making it harder to release without dragging. Hence, harder to find neutral and creeps at a stop with clutch pulled. Don't get me wrong, I think those diaphragm type clutches are great. I just can't find any urgent reason to get one with my stock 74" motor.

-JW
2004 FLHRS   1977 FLH Shovelhead  1992 FLSTC
1945 Indian Chief   1978 XL Bobber

Online 76shuvlinoff

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Re: Four Speed Clutch
« Reply #19 on: March 19, 2019, 02:12:11 PM »
When my mill was 74 inches I could put up with the factory clutch. It had slight issues I couldn't seem to conquer and there's no argument,  maybe I just didn't "get it".   When I went to a 93 inch mill I still had those issues, creep, banging into 1st, neutral was not bad if you toed it in while coming to a stop... but then it slipped too. I added heavy springs. Neutral was a bitch unless you killed the motor, clutch pull got tough, still slipped like hell. Along the way I did ram jet retainers, 5 stud hub, 52 bearing kit blah blah.

With mounting frustration I bought the Rivera, back then I think I spent $380ish for it. At first it was grabby, boy was I pissed. By the time I hit 300 miles it was a thing of beauty.  I then kicked myself in the ass for a long time for not going there first. Don't get me wrong, the bike still has her quirks, but I'll never go back to the stock clutch behind the current motor.

  YMMV.
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Offline cbumdumb

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Re: Four Speed Clutch
« Reply #20 on: March 19, 2019, 02:38:40 PM »
The bike I got running for client the clutch basket and hub were badly grooved and had mis matched parts old club bike so kind explained many of the issues neutral was fun to find unless rolling and creep through stop rampant.

I put a primo in it and my life and customer became a joy , easier clutch pull neutral any time any where no slip or creep.

Online Hossamania

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Re: Four Speed Clutch
« Reply #21 on: March 19, 2019, 02:57:57 PM »
When my mill was 74 inches I could put up with the factory clutch. It had slight issues I couldn't seem to conquer and there's no argument,  maybe I just didn't "get it".   When I went to a 93 inch mill I still had those issues, creep, banging into 1st, neutral was not bad if you toed it in while coming to a stop... but then it slipped too. I added heavy springs. Neutral was a bitch unless you killed the motor, clutch pull got tough, still slipped like hell. Along the way I did ram jet retainers, 5 stud hub, 52 bearing kit blah blah.

With mounting frustration I bought the Rivera, back then I think I spent $380ish for it. At first it was grabby, boy was I pissed. By the time I hit 300 miles it was a thing of beauty.  I then kicked myself in the ass for a long time for not going there first. Don't get me wrong, the bike still has her quirks, but I'll never go back to the stock clutch behind the current motor.

  YMMV.

Shuv, your observation about the grabbiness reminded me of a friend's dad who put a clutch in an old 60's Ford, then promptly drove it to a tree, put the front bumper against it, and slipped the clutch a couple times to bed it in. I thought he was nuts at the time, but he had it right. Helps with that early on grab.
I ended up using that trick over the years when replacing clutches.
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Online 76shuvlinoff

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Re: Four Speed Clutch
« Reply #22 on: March 19, 2019, 03:21:37 PM »
When my mill was 74 inches I could put up with the factory clutch. It had slight issues I couldn't seem to conquer and there's no argument,  maybe I just didn't "get it".   When I went to a 93 inch mill I still had those issues, creep, banging into 1st, neutral was not bad if you toed it in while coming to a stop... but then it slipped too. I added heavy springs. Neutral was a bitch unless you killed the motor, clutch pull got tough, still slipped like hell. Along the way I did ram jet retainers, 5 stud hub, 52 bearing kit blah blah.

With mounting frustration I bought the Rivera, back then I think I spent $380ish for it. At first it was grabby, boy was I pissed. By the time I hit 300 miles it was a thing of beauty.  I then kicked myself in the ass for a long time for not going there first. Don't get me wrong, the bike still has her quirks, but I'll never go back to the stock clutch behind the current motor.

  YMMV.

Shuv, your observation about the grabbiness reminded me of a friend's dad who put a clutch in an old 60's Ford, then promptly drove it to a tree, put the front bumper against it, and slipped the clutch a couple times to bed it in. I thought he was nuts at the time, but he had it right. Helps with that early on grab.
I ended up using that trick over the years when replacing clutches.

I remember my older brother's 65 Mustang. The clutch started to slip so he took it to the local mechanic. The old boy said it was just glazed so he put it up against a tree just like you described and promptly burned the clutch the rest of the way out.....  so my brother paid him to put a new one in.  :teeth:   
Being defenseless does not make you more safe.

Offline friday

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Re: Four Speed Clutch
« Reply #23 on: March 22, 2019, 11:12:30 PM »
you can buy replacement studs so it can be 3 or 5 stud and replace the friction disc too.
the holes in the plates can be drilled to a larger size and deburred to slide good on the studs.


Offline 72fl

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Re: Four Speed Clutch
« Reply #24 on: March 23, 2019, 04:33:22 AM »
When my mill was 74 inches I could put up with the factory clutch. It had slight issues I couldn't seem to conquer and there's no argument,  maybe I just didn't "get it".   When I went to a 93 inch mill I still had those issues, creep, banging into 1st, neutral was not bad if you toed it in while coming to a stop... but then it slipped too. I added heavy springs. Neutral was a bitch unless you killed the motor, clutch pull got tough, still slipped like hell. Along the way I did ram jet retainers, 5 stud hub, 52 bearing kit blah blah.

With mounting frustration I bought the Rivera, back then I think I spent $380ish for it. At first it was grabby, boy was I pissed. By the time I hit 300 miles it was a thing of beauty.  I then kicked myself in the ass for a long time for not going there first. Don't get me wrong, the bike still has her quirks, but I'll never go back to the stock clutch behind the current motor.

  YMMV.

I did all the things Mark did, and I took his advice and installed a Rivera Pro in my 72. I had fought and fought and tried all the aftermarket fixes, but every season 2-4 times I would have to take clutch apart clean it and deglaze the plates, I even tried new plates but same old crap. The Rivera after installing it was getting into neutral at any time was like butter(smooth) The first ride with it, it was so smooth that I thought it was slipping, so I grabbed and handful of throttle and dumped the clutch and it wasn't slipping we left a nice black mark on the garage floor. As far as getting one now, there is a long time employee that started his own business, his name is Ben Kudon, he worked at Rivera for over 40 years and his company is American Prime Manufacturing : https://americanprimemfginc.com/