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Clutch and Transmission Replacement Project


Cycledude

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I have sent the last 12 months wondering what to do with my machine. I fear at 90K miles the one of the bearings on the input shaft went kaput. With recently buying a house, my 04 R1150RT can not be replaced at this time. So I need to fix it, as I have going bonkers with out a motorcycle. Soon I plan to be replacing the transmission on my beloved RT myself. I have a new to me used transmission from eBay. I am now wondering about what else I should have for this project.

 

Im wondering about clutches now. . I have heard of this mythical modified clutch disc. I've seen Beemer boneyard sells both Siebenrock Basic and Oil Proof clutch discs. Wonderlich peddles a Composite, Basic and Oil-resistant. My local BMW dealer has a BMW clutch disc they would like to sell me too. With all those options, I am a little confused. To my knowledge the clutch I have was original. If a stock clutch can go 90K, when why reinvent the wheel? This modified disc, could one buy this online, or do I need to all Canada for it? I have also heard it is at risk to supply challenges. On the subject of clutch discs, what does the community like?

 

One other question I have is do I need a clutch alignment tool? Do I need to buy a tool, or are there other tools that I may already have that can do the job?

 

With this overhaul I also plan to replace the brake and clutch lines with Spiegler lines. Is the screw in funnel from Beemer Boneyard so totally awesome that you can not live with out it? $35 bones seems a little tall. I'm all for having the right tools. I may also replace the slave cylinder, I've read rebuilding it is more bothers some than worthwhile.

 

Anything else I will need for tools, or should be aware of?

 

As to not hijack firekit's thread I started this one.

 

Thank you,

 

Snowy.

 

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Afternoon Snowy

 

You need to get the bike apart then measure up the clutch parts & see exactly what you need.

 

Personally I haven't ridden a BMW boxer bike yet that I have been happy with the launch characteristics of those Oil Proof clutch disks but I must admit I haven't ridden them all. If your engine isn't leaking oil, or it is & you repair it, then the stock clutch disk works very well.

 

Personally at 90k I would definitely replace the slave cylinder as yours is probably on borrowed time & a leak in the slave can kill a new clutch disk.

 

You don't REALLY need a clutch alignment tool but they do make transmission reinstallation easier. You can eyeball the disk line-up or even wrap the clutch push rod with tape & make a clutch alignment tool.

 

As for the brake bleed funnel?-- just make your own, works just as good or even better than the ones you buy. _see picture

 

106105-01.jpg

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I have the rubber plug to make that funnel, in fact I have a bag of them. If you want one PM me your address and I will send you one.

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Clutch condition at 90k certainly depends on how its been ridden. My current clutch has 130k on it, so given that fact, yours "could" have a couple of years left, but seeing is believing.

Youll need 4 long bolts w/heads cut off and slotted (8mm x 1.25 (I think) to use as trans install alignment.

There are some nice write-ups for this job, somewhere.

Helped a friend of mine install a clutch, no alignment tool, and his splines stripped after 2k.

 

So,,, do any of the components self-center?

 

Im replacing this winter as well.

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.....Helped a friend of mine install a clutch, no alignment tool, and his splines stripped after 2k.

 

WOW! Is it possible the alignment pins were left out or otherwise somehow not effective? There is no self centering like cars, which have a clutch pilot bearing in the center of the flywheel.

 

I have advocated that it is important to have a good alignment too, but even more important to tighten the engine to the transmission (the last couple of turns) with the clutch rod installed & the clutch handle pulled in so that the clutch disk is free to translate with respect to the engine.

 

I'm suspicious that the oilhead alignment pin system is are not very robust and is easily deformed as it tries to drag the clutch disk across the flywheel face.

 

Maybe one of the pins wasn't even engaged?

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Clutch condition at 90k certainly depends on how its been ridden. My current clutch has 130k on it, so given that fact, yours "could" have a couple of years left, but seeing is believing.

Youll need 4 long bolts w/heads cut off and slotted (8mm x 1.25 (I think) to use as trans install alignment.

There are some nice write-ups for this job, somewhere.

Helped a friend of mine install a clutch, no alignment tool, and his splines stripped after 2k.

 

So,,, do any of the components self-center?

 

 

Afternoon Twinsig

 

Anything in the clutch that free floats (like clutch disk) will self center (as best it can) after the first disengagement/engagement. Anything pinned with alignment pins will center on whatever the pin layout is.

 

I'm not sure what went wrong with that 2K clutch but unless it was FORCED together & something got bent during assembly then that short life had nothing to do with not using a disk alignment tool.

 

Think about it-- EVERY TIME you disengage the clutch the disk floats free on the input shaft, when it is re-engaged on a running engine with a little clutch slippage during engagement it pretty well has to center up (or at least center up as close as the input shaft C/L to crankshaft C/L will allow. No matter how you originally reassemble it nothing will change that natural centering (Unless You Bend Something In Assembly)

 

 

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Stan Walker

I'm not sure what went wrong with that 2K clutch

 

Are we all assuming that it went back together with good input shaft splines and a new clutch?

 

Is it possible that it went back together with marginal parts? Perhaps in a effort to fix the bike just good enough to sell? Or maybe just being cheap?

 

Stan

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Stan Walker

important to tighten the engine to the transmission (the last couple of turns) with the clutch rod installed & the clutch handle pulled in so that the clutch disk is free to translate with respect to the engine.

 

I've done this both times I installed a transmission. I've never used a clutch alignment tool, never saw the need as it is easy to visually align it close enough to put it together loosely. Then pull in the clutch before tightening the transmission mounting bolts. Never had a problem afterwards.

 

Stan

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he said the diaphragm plate was off center upon disassembly. Splines stripped but were fine at install, Clutch was "half" worn and was all 3 matched components from same used assembly.

weird, and puzzling as well. I mean CRAP! 2000 miles, something was amiss.

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(Unless You Bend Something In Assembly)
That's what I am trying to minimize with keeping the clutch disengaged when the engine-transmission bolts are pulled up.
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he said the diaphragm plate was off center upon disassembly. Splines stripped but were fine at install, Clutch was "half" worn and was all 3 matched components from same used assembly.

weird, and puzzling as well. I mean CRAP! 2000 miles, something was amiss.

Hmmmmm! Do we have another source of spline failures? Suppose all torque is transmitted thru only a small arc portion of the clutch disk due to the misaligned clutch diaphragm plate. But I don't see why that would shell out the spline in 2000 miles.

 

Might one of the two alignment pins be missing or not inserted into the mating hole?

 

DR - Your thoughts?

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each component of the clutch assembly is marked at the factory with paint indicating the heaviest side. if you reinstall all the parts (plates, spring, flywheel) willy nilly, then yeah, I can see the clutch coming apart after 2k miles -- basically vibrating itself to failure.

 

I checked all the moving parts in the clutch assembly and it appears that you need to reinstall them with the heaviest sides opposite each other (three sides per Clymers) at 120 degrees to balance the whole unit.

 

 

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he said the diaphragm plate was off center upon disassembly. Splines stripped but were fine at install, Clutch was "half" worn and was all 3 matched components from same used assembly.

weird, and puzzling as well. I mean CRAP! 2000 miles, something was amiss.

Hmmmmm! Do we have another source of spline failures? Suppose all torque is transmitted thru only a small arc portion of the clutch disk due to the misaligned clutch diaphragm plate. But I don't see why that would shell out the spline in 2000 miles.

 

Might one of the two alignment pins be missing or not inserted into the mating hole?

 

DR - Your thoughts?

 

Morning nrp

 

Used assembly might explain a lot-- was the trans removed correctly or was it horsed out with something bent in the process. Sometimes taking things apart for disposal doesn't happen with due care & caution.

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[quote=dirtrider

Used assembly might explain a lot-- was the trans removed correctly or was it horsed out with something bent in the process. Sometimes taking things apart for disposal doesn't happen with due care & caution.

 

interesting! not trying to take over the thread here just gathering helpful info as well.

I have a used assy w/29k & planning on using that with my 6 spd rebuilt trans, I would rather NOT wipe-out a nice input shaft.

 

Ill call the guy and and get more info..

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02 R1150RT here were splines shredded at 32000 th last year. Had mech.install new seals and input shaft. I then install spacer between hub and my origonal disc. The hub I got from a guy who had replaced his clutch and within a few thou.the slave gave out and ruined everything. I did all the work myself except rebuilding trans. Around 3 thou on clutch now, so far so good. Shame on BMW for creating this type of scenario to happen.

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each component of the clutch assembly is marked at the factory with paint indicating the heaviest side. if you reinstall all the parts (plates, spring, flywheel) willy nilly, then yeah, I can see the clutch coming apart after 2k miles -- basically vibrating itself to failure.

 

I checked all the moving parts in the clutch assembly and it appears that you need to reinstall them with the heaviest sides opposite each other (three sides per Clymers) at 120 degrees to balance the whole unit.

 

 

Morning all.

 

Firstly, I must completely disagree with the statement regarding clutch "balancing" during install.

But, lets analyze it from the standpoint of production and original assembly.

 

Each heavy component is balanced separately during production. You can see this by the drill marks on the parts. Clutch plate is not balanced. The argument is that this balancing is only "close enough" and there is a heavy side.

Sachs then assembles the complete assembly and spins it (both pressure plates, flywheel,spring diaphragm and clutch plate, maybe even push rod). But wait, there are many positions of the clutch plate in respect to other components, what do we do here? Lets disregard that part.

They do this three times at 120 degree spacing to each other, to fine the "best" balance. They mark them. Or maybe then balance the other part with the "known" heavy side to skip this step.

They pack all of the components together and deliver them to BMW assembly line.

 

How come spare parts don't have any markings? What do you do then?

Shouldn't they sell them as a set only?

Any marks on the parts are more than likely assembly verification marks done on the line to signify "I put it together and torqued the bolts".

 

DR, I respect your opinion as I am sure others do. If there is something you want to add it would be greatly appreciated.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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A deep 1/4" socket (can't remember what size) slid over the clutch slave push rod makes a perfect (and free) alignment tool! The important thing is to get the housing tightened down with things aligned close enough so when mounting the tranny the input shaft can find the hole in the clutch disk. Not too tricky.

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on my clutch, I found little marks on the flywheel, pressure plates, but not the clutch plate itself. taking these to a race shop, we found that the relative "heaviest" side corresponded to the markings.

 

I suppose that if all the heaviest sides of each part ended up on the same side of the clutch, wouldn't that introduce some imbalance as the clutch engages and disengages, transferring the now wobbling clutch assembly partially onto the spline. . and it's this engagement that's causing wear?

 

I mean its a possibility?

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Quantum physics says that anything Is possible

 

ha. . quantum physics also says none of this is real, and we're living in a hologram.. but that's a different topic. :)

 

why do race and track shops balance their clutch along with other components of the v drive train? why wouldn't we have a similar need?

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Our speeds (rpms) and rotating masses are not that great such that balance isn't hyper-critical. It is a manufacturing cost thing in a market that is by definition (H-D?) a vibration and noise making machine.

 

Rotating stuff can always be balanced, but only sometimes is it necessary or even noticeable.

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With little discussion of which disc is better, I'm planning on getting another basic. So now I'm looking at the parts fiche and I am confused. My Clymer's manual says there is difference between the hydro and cable clutches. So much so that there are two diagrams. However when I look at the fiche at MaxBMW I only see one. And the one that is shown looks like the cable clutch... If I wanted to have the pressure plates on hand as well, which ones do I need the 04 RT?

 

19807078314_b75a6b844a_c.jpg

 

Thanks,

 

Snowy.

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szurszewski

Clymer shows options for several model years - if you are looking at a parts fiche with a search specific to your model year, it would make sense that you only see one (which is to say, your model year bike was either hydraulic or direct cable - mine is cable, but pretty sure 1150 is hydraulic).

 

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Your clutch is hydraulic. You might want to see if you can turn down your pressure plates at a machine shop if there's not too much heat damage, new ones at Max Bmw are about $350 for both plates.

 

 

 

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  • 3 weeks later...

OK, I'm stuck...

 

I am in the process of removing the old gear box. The transmission is loose and on the guide pins. However I am stuck on how the gear indicator wires are back feed out. It does not seem there is enough room the the connector to clear the battery tray/servo mount and the engine case. This is a 2004 RT. I am following Chris Harris's video, but that was on a 1100. So what else has to move?

 

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Thank you,

 

Snowy.

 

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BackInTheSaddle

Just replaced the clutch housing on my '04 r1150rt. you have a better setup than I. I could have used a second pair of hands every once in a while. All in all though, the group here helped me out when I got stuck. Great group!

 

Good luck with this!

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I got it... More force was needed. More photos later.

 

Snowy.

 

Ah, indeed. A little BFFI as Dad used to teach. :grin:

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Ok, here is how far I got yesterday.

 

I was able to remove the original transmission. It move with no problem. Most difficult thing so far has been the gear indicator plug.

]20965722806_bb191c088e_c.jpg

 

I also opened up the clutch pack. Does this look to be the original disc? I purchased the bike with 35,000 Miles, it now has 90,000. I measured this disc to be 5.5mm. The new disc is 6.8mm. What about the steel plates? The camera picked up much more colors of browns than what I see with just my eyes. Should one not reuse these steels? Or would I be ok?

20982146942_f8e75d738c_c.jpg

 

20991992495_b7a21697e4_c.jpg

 

20803903520_6b84cae000_c.jpg

 

This transmission is making some horrible noises. From one of Chris Harris videos, I'm thinking it is one or both of the transmission input bearings. When I pulled off the slave cylinder it was very wet with brake fluid. Did this brake fluid trash the rear bearing on the input shaft? I was wondering why there is a gasket for the slave cylinder...

 

20370899093_f56f5bc744_c.jpg

 

20803878520_9b343337fd_c.jpg[/url]

 

Here are the splines from the 90,000 transmission. I'm very happy to see this. Does someone know how to read the markings on the transmission case?

20805195809_10994b4ae0_c.jpg

 

20815482610_0af8013fbc_c.jpg

 

The new used transmission is from the 2003 RT with around 29,000 miles. So I am hopeful for many more miles!

21003539245_4237803e36_c.jpg

 

20815475660_7a36c4d440_c.jpg

 

Snowy.

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Have no idea on how to read the codes but that is as good of splines you could hope for on a used transmission. Your old ones look great too.

 

As for the rest of the clutch pack there is no doubt they all need to be replaced(what you call the metals.

Age and contamination plus they will be dished...put a good straight edge across the face of them and you will note they are no longer flat.

Also get the proper lube and use it in all the places the manual calls for. I used the Guard Dog product from Beemer Boneyard and can recommend it.

 

Personally I would also do the spacer mod on the clutch hub. Time and money.... this job takes both.

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Oh yes. Slave cylinder is being replaced with new. I ordered new steel/pressure plates yesterday. I should have them Friday. I will continue the rebuild over the weekend.

 

Snowy.

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So clutch parts are here weekend rebuild is a go!

 

While i'm doing all this...

 

What is the best way to clean off the varnishing in the throttle bodies? Is there any thing I need to watch out for with the throttle bodies? Any key things NOT to do?

20937700089_c4741b4143_c.jpg

 

This I think is extreme build up. The transmission failure happened on the way home from South Dakota July 2014. Since then the bike has not gotten up to temperature. It has been started only a few times to move storage locations and onto a trailer for a move. I don't think I was able to get any heat in the motor. So it ran very rich, thus this much varnishing.

 

Snowy

 

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I prefer Seafoam in spray can for any fuel system components. And an Old tooth brush and rag for the TBs maybe an old sock, worn out briefs, cotton of course.

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K&N Air Filter?

 

That much build up has happened over a long time. You don't want to squirt a can of cleaner in there as it will run into the cylinders and more nasty things may happen.Removal is best and then using a good spray cleaner for air intakes spray away.

 

IF you must clean them mounted on the engine then get an old bathroom facecloth, not paper towel, or a microfiber cloth and put a portion of the cloth under the throttle butterfly. Carefully soak the cloth and let it sit all nice and wet for a period of time. Remove cloth, fold it to a clean part and repeat as necessary both above and below the butterfly. Please note this is not even 3rd or 4th best compared to removal and cleaning.

 

Good time to refresh the fuel injector O rings.

 

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If you do any work on those throttle bodies DO NOT TAMPER WITH THE THROTTLE STOP SCREW.

 

Also, with that much build up, I suggest you take out the Big Brass Screws. (make sure you do not mix them up, and also before you tamper with them make a note of how many turns out from fully inserted they are). Give the BBS's a good clean and also the connecting galleries in the TB's.

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Morning Essnowyt

 

You have that bike so far apart now that the BEST way to clean the varnish from those throttle bodies is to remove them & clean them out with a GOOD gum/varnish cleaning carburetor spray. Carb spray is about the only thing that will work in a reasonable time.

 

If you do remove them also remove the BBS screws so you can clean in the BBS by-pass ports & clean the BBS screws themselves.

 

Also keep the L/H throttle body turned so the TPS (sensor on the side) is ALWAYS at the top (or mark it for same clocking reinstallation then remove it)--You never want to get any carb or other cleaner in the TPS sensor.

 

If you decide to clean the TB's while still on the bike then use an o2 safe & catalytic converter safe carburetor cleaner. Then (again) remove the BBS screws, watch the TPS sensor & remove the vacuum plugs (or hoses) on the TB bottom nipples to allow the gunk to run out. (adding drain hoses to the TB bottom nipples allows most of the drain-off gunk to flow out away from the bike's frame & engine)

 

Just be very careful as most things strong enough to remove that varnish will also attack the bike's painted or plastic surfaces.

 

 

 

 

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Removal is best and then using a good spray cleaner for air intakes spray away.

You "could" use choke and carb cleaner and if you need a new CAT afterward i'll sell you one.

 

Optional reading in your spare time.

 

http://seafoamsales.com/sea-foam-spray/how-to-use-sea-foam-spray/

 

I didnt explain the actual technique i use, which is to apply a minimal amount to the affected area and clean with the TBs removed. But I would not use the stuff like it was coming from a fire hydrant. (unless the engine was running and i was injecting it into the TB vac ports) which i do a couple of times a year.

Not sure if this has any long-term effects though, I'm at 212k on a factory engine, who knows, this thing could pop any day, or could go another 100?

 

PS: essnowyt, i suggest starting (search & read first) another thread with a new question/issue.

Good luck w/trans build, plenty of knowledge at BMWST!

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While on my lunch break, now, I re-read my previous message which "sounded" a bit harsh. I mean no harm and apologize if my responses seem combative. Much like the Patrick Jane character from the Mentalist who simply says whatever is on his mind, meaning no harm, but still pisses people off. I'm really nice person, and you could ask my friends if i had any.

Again, my apologies.

 

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Twinsig no apologies necessary for me .... I have been told I have an attitude more than once myself... and I read nothing into your post but good information.

 

I am known as Mr. Chemical by a good friend but I have been trying out some non petro chemical cleaners and just cleaned a set of CB350 carbs that had been sitting since 1983 using a product called Oil Lift. I was amazed at how it dissolved the fuel varnish and carb bodies without removing the patina. Quick rinse in hot water and it was the quickest and easiest carb cleaning I've done in a long time.

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The project is complete.

 

A little Mad Max style... I Rolled the naked RT to the gas station for some fresh fuel.

Phase one is done!

New/used transmission installed.

New clutch pack.

New stainless steel clutch line and slave cylinder.

New fluid in final drive and transmission

New engine oil and filter.

New air filter.

New fuel filter.

New spark plugs.

 

Phase two will start soon. That will be installing new stainless steel brake lines.

 

21204974056_c88c8e22a9_c.jpg

 

Snowy.

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