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Neutral to first


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My 1200RT usually goes easily from neutral to first but every once in a while, I can press on the shift lever a bunch of times and nothing happens. I try to squeeze the clutch, roll back and forth etc and eventually it drops in. Anybody else have this happen? How do you handle it?



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I've got the same problem particularly when cold.......Hard to get from N to 1st......Let clutch out and sometimes lunge a little bit as it finally goes in....But, this trans is so much better than the 1150's with that big leap to 6th....This is smooth (not quite Japanese like, but close) and I think the ratios are spot on..........



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Usually happens to me in the mornings after I back it out of the garage. I just let the clutch all the way out and then pull it back in. Nearly always kicks into 1st after that.

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Do a quick grab/release of the clutch a couple of times and you'll be good to go - no need to even move the bike. (I've had this issue with every bike I've owned - it's not specific to dry clutch systems.)

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Mine did exactly the same thing. What Lawman said is the absolute fix. Hold the shifter down and just let the clutch out until the clunk. After a few times you won't even think about it. By the way, after 2500 miles it almost never does that anymore. thumbsup.gif

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Understanding the mechanics of the transmission helps here.


- When stopped, the Tx driven gears are also stopped

- When the clutch is disengaged, the drive gears coast to a stop quickly

- The gear engagement dogs must align to complete a shift

- If the engagement dogs are not lined up correctly, the Tx will not complete the shift until you do something


- The choices are;

1) Roll the bike back slightly to move the driven gears

2) Let the clutch out slightly to move the drive gears

3) Time the clutch pull and lever stab to engage the gear dogs before the drive gears coast to a stop.


I use method #1. It puts the least strain on the components. Be easy on the shift lever and it works every time. There are, of course, instances when you don't have the time to or convenience of rolling the bike. Use method #2 or #3. Easy.


Paul in CA

'05 R1200RT

'98 XR400R

Other vintage

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Thank to all. Just wanted to make sure there was nothing wrong with the bike or my technique. I can live with this issue but it makes quick get aways a little difficult.


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This has been a characteristic of all three BMW's I have owned - a '92 R100RT, a '98 R1100RT, and now with my '05 R1200RT. With all of them releasing the clutch a little allowed first gear to be selected.

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