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I wasn't even aware of hydraulic clutches until a friend of mine got a Vrod. Thought it was a cool concept but thought they were for cruisers and such. Then he got a Rc51 and it had a hydraulic clutch on it, he let me take it down the road a bit. I didn't like the feel of it compared to a cable but that's just me, there wasn't a feel to me. Can't speak to the conversion but I prefer a cable to hydraulic, but if you're in stop and go traffic all the time you might want it.
 

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I like the hydraulic clutch in my car, except for the fact that the master cylinder is leaking. Guess what I get to change on my day off.

The clutch effort on every bike I've ever ridden is light enough that I don't see the need for a hydraulic one.
 

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The Indifference Engine
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My KTM has a hydraulic... of course I have no idea how much more or less effort it would take to do the same amount of work with a cable clutch. But it is a pretty light actuation, and I'm amazed at how many plates are in it haha.

They are a damn bugger to bleed sometimes though and you have to worry about leaking seals that you may not notice leaking until it's too late.
 

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I've put about four hours into attempts to bleed the clutch on my Benz over the course of two days. I'm not feeling really enthusiastic about hydraulic clutches at the moment.
 

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The Indifference Engine
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My KTM uses mineral oil for the clutch and what I noticed was that it doesn't allow bubbles to move very quickly no matter what you do. I went through three bottles and various methods: traditional bleed, back bleed with syringe (had to ask for one at a drugstore... man that gets you funny looks), ziptie lever and wait, tap slave, shove piston into slave, punch slave, shake slave, hold slave above the master, hold slave sideways, cross my fingers, hold my tongue right, wish, yell, scream, punch and kick... nothing worked.

Then I thought about it logically... and did this.

Fill my bleed hose completely with hydraulic oil and hold it vertically while attacked to bleed nipple. It's important to have the hose full of oil with ZERO bubbles.

I then pulled the clutch lever to the bar, and cracked the bleed nipple.

After cracking the nipple release the lever and PULL it back into place (out). This forces the master to pull oil out of the reservoir and moves a LOT of oil down the clutch line.

Pump the lever in this fashion a couple of times while CAREFULLY watching the oil level in the reservoir. Making sure to force the lever back into place after every pump and maintain the oil level.

You'll note that at no point did I close the bleed nipple. Pumping the lever back and forth pulls a little oil out of your bleed line (remember you had it prefilled with ZERO bubbles in it), but most of it from the cylinder.

This rapidly moves the oil from the master to the slave/bleed nipple without giving the air bubbles time to creep back up between opening and closing, and without introducing more air into the system.


It took me about 6 pumps or 1/8 of a new bottle of oil to finally get the air bubbles out of my line.

Hope this helps.
 

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Try a Stahlbus bleeder valve next time. Like magic. :)


Sent from my Motorcycle iPhone app
 

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The Indifference Engine
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Try a Stahlbus bleeder valve next time. Like magic. :)


Sent from my Motorcycle iPhone app
If you want to send me one I'll test it for you. But I don't need to spend $170 for 4 when I'd only use one. And only need it if I were to replace my slave cylinder again. Or my master failed.
 

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I'm not a fan of hydro clutches on motorbikes. Added complexity and cost with reduced feedback and feel. In fact a lot of people still race the 05-06 GSXR1000 instead of the newer model because it has a cable clutch instead of a hydraulic clutch.


Sent from Motorcycle.com Free App
 
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