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Discussion Starter #1
Long time reader, first time poster. Spent some time and got the '01 RC51 ready for the road - oil & filter change, clean up, lube chain and adjust tire pressure.

Noticed that the clutch lever was making a squeaking sound when pulling it in. Didn't think much of it until I went to ride the bike and found that the bike jumps as soon as I let the clutch lever out just a hair.

Thinking that the two must be related, everything was fine when parking the bike last winter. Checked the hoses and hard lines and didn't find any problems. Reservoir is full.

Close inspection of the clutch master (no dis-assembly) shows what looks to be some corrosion around the exposed area of the piston. Not 100% on this. No leaks anywhere.

Making the assumption that the issue is air/water in the system. Wondering how the air/water made it in and looking for feedback as to whether or not I just bleed the clutch or take it apart to re and re the seals while cleaning everything up. Don't mind doing the work, just wondering what others have run into in the past. Always like to err on the side caution which means taking everything apart.
 

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The RC51 has an abrupt clutch engagement. It's just something to adapt to.
On the SP2s, they added a judder spring and seat along with larger I.D. friction plate to try and make the engagement a bit smoother, but still they hook up pretty quick.
If you clutch fluid is nice and clear and not cloudy, then you should be ok.

Now if you have no lever travel at all, then the cup in the master cylinder may be worn and not maintaining pressure when actuated.
Does your bike tend to creep more while the clutch is disengaged, even more so than usual?

A squeaky clutch lever is usually caused by lack of lubrication of the lever pivot bushing.
Just remove the nut and bolt, then remove the lever and clean the bushing on the lever and pivot bolt.
Then apply some lithium grease and reassemble.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Clutch Master...

Thanks SubSailor - have read a small sample of your other posts and was hoping you would see this. :)

Something is definitely up with the clutch master cylinder, it wasn't doing this when I parked the bike last fall. There is a very small degree of creep. Took a look inside the reservoir and noticed some dark staining/deposit in one area. The fluid isn't clear and should probably be changed anyway.

Going to take the clutch master apart, clean and flush with new DOT4 fluid. Will follow the service manual information regarding lubrication, and will get some new seals if the old ones look compromised at all.
 

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Let me clarify a bit on the "creep" aspect.
I was meaning that if you had your clutch disengaged, and your clutch began dragging more and more while disengaged, that then your cup in the master cylinder may be worn and not maintaining internal pressure.
If so, you could order the cup and seals and rebuild your master cylinder.

I had this happen to my truck brake and clutch system. The pedal would gradually creep downward with the same pressure applied.
Once the parts were replaced, it worked fine.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Just doesn't have much "action" or travel when disengaging the clutch (lever in to the bar). Only at the very end (level at the bar) does the clutch disengage. Makes for a rough start.

Pulled it apart tonight and found a few things. Firstly, some goop in the reservoir and just below the reservoir on the clutch master body (but not inside the piston or piston housing). Secondly, the cup seal on the spring side appears to be worn out and is far too easy to get in and out of the piston housing. The other cup feels like it seals okay.

Pretty sure this explains what I was noticing. As the back seal (lever end) finally passes the reservoir inlet the fluid travels down the line and actuates the piston, disengaging the clutch.

Will replace both cup seals and the seals on the reservoir tomorrow as long as I can get parts. Looking forward to a ride afterwards. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Parts arrived yesterday (piston kit and reservoir o-rings) and took some time to rebuilt last night. Rebuild went smooth, the spring side cup seal was definitely contributing to the problem.

What a pain to bleed - mostly my fault. Picked up a MityVac which should have made the bleed a snap, but didn't have a fitting in the kit that would seal over the clutch slave bleed nipple. I must have cycled 2+ volumes of fluid through the system before dropping the MityVac hand pump and doing it the ol' fashioned way.

Brakes front and rear got flushed as well, hate wasting good DOT4 fluid when there is 1/3rd of a container left. :D

Subsailor: thanks again for posting your thoughts. Appreciate it.
 

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Just curious, was this an actual rebuild "kit" or did you piece it together, and how much and where did you get it from? Or were they all just oem replacement parts.

Maybe this is a dumb question, but you use DOT 4 brake fluid right? there is no difference in fluids in the clutch lines and brake lines?

i only ask because i am getting a little creep with an engaged clutch as well as some slippage at about 7-8K rpms. I figured instead of buying a whole clutch kit i would rebuild the clutch cylinder, flush the lines and change the oil. its an 06 with 16.5K on her.
 

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Just curious, was this an actual rebuild "kit" or did you piece it together, and how much and where did you get it from? Or were they all just oem replacement parts.

Maybe this is a dumb question, but you use DOT 4 brake fluid right? there is no difference in fluids in the clutch lines and brake lines?

i only ask because i am getting a little creep with an engaged clutch as well as some slippage at about 7-8K rpms. I figured instead of buying a whole clutch kit i would rebuild the clutch cylinder, flush the lines and change the oil. its an 06 with 16.5K on her.
The clutch master cylinder replacement parts are in kit form.
Item 3 in the link below. Essentially all the master cylinder internals.
http://www.mrcycles.com/fiche_section_detail.asp?section=156027&category=MOTORCYCLES&make=HONDA&year=2002&fveh=3621
 
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