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Author Topic: False Neutrals  (Read 1773 times)

VT Rocker

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False Neutrals
« on: August 25, 2011, 03:38:04 PM »
I am having a fair amount of difficulty with false neutrals in my 2009 G-5 Deluxe, both going up the gears and down.  Occasionally I would find these on my old British bikes (Nortons, BSAs, Triumphs) but nowhere near as often.  I fear downshifting going into turns with power because sometimes I release the clutch to find I'm in another neutral.

Is this behavior typical of these bikes or do you folks think I have an especially sloppy transmission.

Are there any alterations, techniques others have found to reduce the occurance?

Thanks

rbelyk

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #1 on: August 25, 2011, 03:58:11 PM »
I was getting that as well when I first got my bike in June, especially going into 4th
after reading the forums it sounded like a normal thing that would get better as the bike got broken in, it did seem to clear up after the first service or I just got used to it, but now its back with a vengance, today it was every gear and it popped out of a couple
I am taking it in to the dealer to have them look at it. if it makes it there  ???
its also developed a ticking sound like tappets in an old car, similar to Wills problem.
 :o
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r80rt

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #2 on: August 25, 2011, 04:01:51 PM »
It will be a different bike when you have somewhere around 2000 miles on the clock.
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VT Rocker

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #3 on: August 25, 2011, 04:22:11 PM »
Would be nice if it gradually subsided.  I have 1700 miles on it.

I love the bike otherwise and have been smiling all the way to work and back for the first time in years.

WillW

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #4 on: August 25, 2011, 04:43:34 PM »
Some folk notice a change for the better when they change to fully synth.
I have become aware of the extent to which even subtle changes in mood and attitude affect my riding. You'd never notice it in a car, but on a bike it's uncanny. I have rides sometimes when my shifting is all over the place, missed gears, loud clunking shifts, etc. Next time, smooth as butter, faultless gear shifting.
It's nothing to do with the bike, and all to do with me being a bit out of the zone without even knowing it. Just little shifts in mood & attitude which just don't matter in a car are greatly magnified on two wheels.
Worth noticing.....
« Last Edit: August 25, 2011, 05:10:56 PM by WillW »
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barenekd

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #5 on: August 25, 2011, 08:40:18 PM »
There is a weird shifting arm called a striker that pushes or pulls on some pins that rotate the shifting fork cam. This little item has a hairpin return spring that keeps the striker in contact with the pins. It appears that  it may take awhile to loosen up so it keeps in contact with the pins properly.If that spring is broken it will cause all kinds of shifting problems.
It looks like it may possibly be accessed where the shifting mechanism enters the gearbox under the right engine case.
Have the dealer check it out.
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aikischmid

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #6 on: August 27, 2011, 01:31:54 AM »
Nice to read this thread. My new 2011 G5 has just 150 miles on it - I've only had it just a couple weeks now. I love it so much, and feel much more comfortable and confident riding it since I just passed my 3-day motorcycle safety course and have a real bona-fide motorcycle endorsement now. I've been following the break-in procedure, just riding around town, varying speeds frequently and have not yet taken her over 50 mph. But I've definitely noticed that I get lots of false neutrals. At first I thought it was because I was not shifting properly, but I know that's not the case now - I'm riding it perfectly competently. But like everytime I take her out, I always get at least one false neutral, usually more.
So from this thread I gather just stay the course and it should resolve as the bike gets broken in. If not, of course, thank God for the warranty and I can take it to the dealer for a look over.
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Arizoni

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #7 on: August 27, 2011, 01:49:49 AM »
IMO, most of the false neutrals folks have are caused by not using a firm positive motion of the foot all of the way to the place where the shift lever stops while shifting.

Yes, the shifting gets better as the parts wear in but until they do make a mental note to always move the lever all of the way to the stop.
I know sometimes I forget to do this and sometimes I will end up with a false neutral. :-[
Jim
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Desi Bike

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #8 on: August 27, 2011, 01:56:49 AM »
From what I gather on the threads and personal experience, the break in proceedure not only seats the metal bits on the bike, but serves as an introductory period for the rider and bike. 'hello bike... Can I shift like this?..   No, you cant.. Hmm ok then, how about this... No...  Ok... Show me how you like  it...'    Its a compromise situation.  Just like a real flesh and blood woman, one must work on the relationship. My 'woman', Miss Bling, and I have a working relationship with regards to shifting. She sometimes doesnt like it when I drop too many gears coming to a slow down or almost stop without letting her clutch out first to grab a gear. once you get to know the woman... You can make her purrr...  Lol... 
میں نہیں چاہتا کہ ایک اچار
میں صرف اپنی موٹر سائیکل پر سوار کرنا چاہتے ہیں

Ducati Scotty

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #9 on: August 27, 2011, 09:46:14 PM »
Desi, never were truer words for bikes and women spoken ;D

bman734

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #10 on: August 28, 2011, 01:39:08 PM »
Try pressing harder when shifting up or down. I had a few problems with false neutrals too until I realized that it was a rider related issue causing this. Since changing my habits to pressing a little harder while shifting I have not had another problem since.
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VT Rocker

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #11 on: August 28, 2011, 02:58:27 PM »
I'm not convinced that the answer is in using more force.  In fact, since I began this thread, I've been experimenting a bit, and find that a softer foot appears to enhance by ability to hit the next gear while down-shifting.  On the other hand, a more determined lift from 2nd to 3rd seems to avoid a false neutral going up. 

So far, the three best pieces of advice appear to be:  1) move to synthetic oil (not done yet but will try) 2) wait a bit longer to see if the break-in helps reduce the numer of false neutrals  3) be a more sensitive guy and learn how to please my ride. ( The latter has been on my list for a longer time than my ownership of my Royal Enfield!)

VT Rocker

Raj V

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #12 on: August 28, 2011, 05:26:26 PM »
I was convinced of a false neutral in my B5. It has miraculously and completely disappeared after the first oil change and as I got to know the bike better. Changing gear is now as easy as it can be.

prof_stack

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #13 on: August 29, 2011, 02:05:48 AM »
Today on my 153 mile ride there were NO false neutrals or gears popping into neutral.  I usually shift firmly BUT I figured out what might be reason today.

I just moved the pegs so they are in the 12 o'clock position.  That, coupled with my boots being steel-toed, upshifts were always done at the steel part of the boot.  In other words, almost by definition the shifts were firm since the metal toes make a firm contact with the shift lever. 

That's way different than wearing soft shoes (which I think is dumb when riding...) and having the shoe compress more when you shift.
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Lwt Big Cheese

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #14 on: September 02, 2011, 02:09:46 PM »
I found fewer false neutrals once I adjusted the clutch and replaced the primary chain.

Most mess ups are when "racing" someone rather than chilling in the wind.
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WillW

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #15 on: September 02, 2011, 02:37:58 PM »
It's mainly the mind getting in the way of things....
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Raj V

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #16 on: September 02, 2011, 03:38:01 PM »
Quote
It's mainly the mind getting in the way of things....

There is much about these bike that are completely mystical. No one can be sure what causes some of the things happening or if those things are happening at all. This can be frustrating, charming and mysterious but never ordinary.

ROVERMAN

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #17 on: September 02, 2011, 04:01:09 PM »
I have been reading the UCE threads a lot since i am considering a new B5. Is it just me or am i seeing an increase in complaints with these bikes? False neutrals,rattling motors etc. My Iron Barrel has the LH shift, Dr Seuss linkage, etc. I have never (2,800 mi) needed to adjust the clutch and only occasionally hit a false neutral. I would think that considering the really vast difference in the Unit construction design that this really shouldn't be an issue at this stage. So i am wondering, is quality slipping? Or is it that there are just more out there? Hence,more complaints.
Speaking of the B5, my local (25 mi away) dealer is no longer carrying Enfields. There are only two others in Michigan, both some distance away, and neither have a B5. I would really like to try before i buy, what's a Bulleteer to do? :( :( :(
Robert & REnfield in MI.
PS. If i get a B5 i would reluctantly be willing to sell REnfield. :o :(.

barenekd

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #18 on: September 02, 2011, 05:07:22 PM »
There could be more "complaints" as there are more bikes being sold. However it's the guys who aren't complaining that you are missing out on the forum. The people who own the bikes and are quite happy with them. And a lot of the "complaints" are guys who haven't figured out how to work their RE yet. I'm not sure that the posts are complaints, as much as just wanting reassurance that their bikes are OK.
I did have a couple of issues with mine when it was new. The headlight was extremely dim. I got a 7" light and it was still unsatisfactory. I started checking the lighting wiring and found the dimmer switch was improperly assembled. I reassembled it and the lights are great now. I had an issue with the side stand switch and the bike was occasionally cutting out. My mechanic at the shop found it and fixed in within a half hour. Any other problems  I've had with mine were self induced, and promptly fixed.
The bike is running great and I'm still loving it. I don't anticipate any more problems with it, and any minor niggles should be easy enough to fix. I have 3200 miles on mine and the only adjustment I've made on mine is the chain.
I really haven't had any more problems with it than some of the Oriental machines I have owned.
Bare
« Last Edit: September 02, 2011, 05:14:52 PM by barenekd »
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Ducati Scotty

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #19 on: September 02, 2011, 05:13:16 PM »
Exactly!  Most of what you see is problems seeking solutions.  There are only a few threads on cool things that require no repair ;)  I think the tone of some threads is colored by the fact that the UCE is supposed to be so much more maintenace free than the older bikes.  It is, but it's not totally maintenance free.  You still need to tighten some bolts occasionally and even the new bikes have their quirks when compared to modern Japanese machinery. 

Most of these things sort themselves out over time but if you don't ever want to turn a wrench maybe an RE isn't for you. If, like me, you need a connection to your machine and enjoy some usual maintenance and an occasional repair, boy have we got a bike for you!

Scott

ROVERMAN

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #20 on: September 02, 2011, 08:08:31 PM »
Don't get me wrong boys, i have an Iron Barrel, so i do turn a wrench. My concern is that some of the basic stuff is slipping through the cracks. If i bought a used UCE without a warranty,no problem, i have tools and CMW, but if i buy new and have issues it is a pain to go miles and miles to your nearest dealer. I have seen a lot of newbies voicing the same concern here of late. I really want a B5 but doubt is creeping in. :-\

Desi Bike

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #21 on: September 02, 2011, 08:39:48 PM »
Roverman, if you want to look at my C5, we are only about 30 miles apart, sorry its not a B5 though.
میں نہیں چاہتا کہ ایک اچار
میں صرف اپنی موٹر سائیکل پر سوار کرنا چاہتے ہیں

Ducati Scotty

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #22 on: September 02, 2011, 10:40:44 PM »
Don't get me wrong boys, i have an Iron Barrel, so i do turn a wrench. My concern is that some of the basic stuff is slipping through the cracks. If i bought a used UCE without a warranty,no problem, i have tools and CMW, but if i buy new and have issues it is a pain to go miles and miles to your nearest dealer. I have seen a lot of newbies voicing the same concern here of late. I really want a B5 but doubt is creeping in. :-\

If your nearest dealer is a bit far just see if you can make an agreement.  If something goes funny under warranty, have him send you the parts so you can fix it yourself.  I'm sure if you want a con rod he'll want you to bring it by.  If it's something small I'm sure you can discuss on the phone and wait at the mailbox.

Having wrenched on an iron barrel I don't think there's much you couldn't fix on a UCE.  Also, if you know your way around a wrench many things newbies ask about won't even trouble you.  You should already be familiar with tightening nuts and bolts and the usual things a British single needs.

Scott
« Last Edit: September 02, 2011, 10:42:57 PM by Ducati Scotty »

olhogrider

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #23 on: September 05, 2011, 04:41:00 PM »
Back on topic. I was having false neutrals with increasing frequency. I know that correlation is not causation so I don't know if it is that the ambient temperatures have dropped lately, or the change of oil type and brand or just more miles are finally helping. Last ride there was only one false neutral. Haven't had a chance to get back to the dealer.Maybe I won't have to.

Kevin Mahoney

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #24 on: September 06, 2011, 05:14:59 AM »
I have read every warranty claim ever put in on a Royal Enfield in the US since the mid 1990's. One thing I can say with unwavering certainty is that warranty claims have plummeted with the advent of the UCE bikes. To be sure things can and do go wrong but the percentage of bikes with warranty claims attached to them (for any reason) is down to the point that I no longer need the number of tech people that we once did. Most of our tech calls relate to Iron Barrels.

A couple of other things I can say is that the bikes get better and quieter as they get miles on them, especially up to about 1,500 miles. They also shift better.

This part I hate to even bring up because no one wants to hear it but.......most shifting problems revolve around foot wear (boots are great only if you can actually feel what you are doing) and foot position. We have taken bike that customers and dealers have sworn would not shift correctly and put one of our demo riders on them. They have usually shifted perfectly. We then put the customer/dealer on a known to be flawless demo bike and find that they miss shifts.

There are exceptions to the rule and no one wants to think that their technique is perfect but....

ES-335

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #25 on: September 06, 2011, 07:09:14 AM »
I took sometimes the advantage of my sophisticated foot art with false neutrals when riding downhill  a road  ;D But what was rather unpleasant was that a couple of lower gears popped off after crossroads especially when escaping a timber truck. That happened every now and then even if I paid attention to shifting gears. After 12 000 kms.

ROVERMAN

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #26 on: September 06, 2011, 12:31:44 PM »
Sorry, off topic again. Desi Bike,thanks for the offer,i might take you up on it.
Scotty, i totally agree with your comments. But like i said it's a shame that there isn't more dealer coverage in my area just in case of a Will type disaster. Just to reiterate, i love my Iron Barrel warts and all.
Kevin, thanks for your input, i totally agree with your footware comments.
Robert & REnfield in MI.

Ducati Scotty

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #27 on: September 06, 2011, 01:21:25 PM »
There are exceptions to the rule and no one wants to think that their technique is perfect but....

Flawed as the bike may be, iron barrel or UCE, I know I am moreso.  I tell everyone I work with, "If I've been messing with it and it doesn't work now it's probably something I did.  Suspect me first."  ;)

Scott

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #28 on: September 06, 2011, 02:28:42 PM »
With now 14' kms on the clock in 14 month, sometimes there are days when shifting just dosen't work. In this case one out of ten shifts dosen't hit. I mostly have the same boots and use only Motul 15W50.
I'm used to alter clutch play a little, but I think this has more a psychological effect.
I'm convinced, a gear box failure would show different signs. Maybe it's about temperature, but even more it's the level of focussing, methinks.
2010 G5
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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #29 on: September 06, 2011, 04:49:44 PM »
Funny that temperature gets mentioned, i had a couple of buggered up shifts the other day in the cool morning. Then again, it may be just have been my technique at the time. I am at odds to figure out what cool ambient temps would have to do with it, other that outer, air cooled portions get cooled more than the inner, oil heated bits and tolerances change?  Don't think it would be that..
میں نہیں چاہتا کہ ایک اچار
میں صرف اپنی موٹر سائیکل پر سوار کرنا چاہتے ہیں

olhogrider

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #30 on: September 06, 2011, 06:00:54 PM »
I was thinking viscosity of the oil as the cooler air would result in thicker oil. Today is a bit warmer. Got to go ride and check it out.

As for footwear, it hasn't changed. My shifting technique hasn't changed in 40 years of riding. That is, except for those automatic scooters I have owned. They never missed a shift. ;D

Could have been the switch from Repsol to Castrol. We'll see.

prof_stack

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #31 on: September 06, 2011, 06:10:22 PM »
Only when my C5 is hot does shifting become less precise, and that is usually when I forget to downshift to neutral before coming to a stop.

I keep looking for that magical neutral finder, but it disappeared!   ;D
A Royal Enfield owner's cup is always half full.

barenekd

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #32 on: September 06, 2011, 08:33:57 PM »
Mine works very well, thank you. I miss a shift occasionally because my foot doesn't come up far enough, but then so would any other bike I've ridden. When I first got it I missed a lot of 3rd to 4th shifts, but either my technique has improved or the gearbox broke in. I suspect it was just my learning what the bike expected.
Bare
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I refuse to tiptoe through life only to arrive safely at death
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olhogrider

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #33 on: September 06, 2011, 09:35:01 PM »
I suspect its British heritage was repulsed by the Spanish oil. Just did 50 miles of twisty 2-lane. Only two missed shifts. That is acceptable and a huge improvement. Probably something in that Castrol that it likes. Whether it is the clutch or gears, I don't know, but it is much happier now.

BrashRooster

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #34 on: September 09, 2011, 04:38:32 AM »
I have a B5 and on my post titled been along time I didn't complain on "false nuturals" not because I don't get them I do but I know that they have been my fault. My 250 rebel I traded in with 20,000 miles (purchased new in 2006) had a tendacy for the rider to miss gears when shifting and my 1982 yamaha xj650 maxim and my 1974 honda cb550. I know it is me not the bikes but I actualy think the B5 is more forgiving. My xj650 would pop into nutural if I pulled to hard in first because I had a bad habit of getting on it and not shifting soon enough. I do have lots of experience at replacing a clutch. The little rebel was on its third one in the 20,000 miles I rode it. So far 1500 miles on my new B5 in less then a month since I owned it I honostly can't complain about the motor or clutch. Now I would recomend the B5 despite my uh issues I had. I can not make a connection between my starter and my exhaust pipe breaking. I have to believe it was coincedence or karma. Yes I was pretty upset but it would not be fair of me to say the B5 was troubled. I think my dealer was very good to me and has done a wonderful job helping me. I think if you got a B5 you would probably be like me and wonder why theu didn't make the uce engine a little sooner. 
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barenekd

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #35 on: September 09, 2011, 09:58:26 PM »
Quote
Only when my C5 is hot does shifting become less precise, and that is usually when I forget to downshift to neutral before coming to a stop.

Is it hard to find neutral when you're  stopped? If it is, your clutch is probably dragging a bit. Check your cable play.
Bare
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Desi Bike

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #36 on: September 09, 2011, 10:59:57 PM »
If i dont get it to noootral before coming to a stop, my trick is to drag the clutch just barely to preload the transmission. I'm able then to clunk it around to newt-ral with ease. Elsewhere on the threads somewhere on the internets I read that holding the clutch in is bad news for the clutch, so I am always dropping my bike into new-trawl at any stop longer than a few seconds, and it gives me so time to stretch and gaze around at the surroundings, surf the web, make meaningless replys such as this on the forum while at a red light....  :p
میں نہیں چاہتا کہ ایک اچار
میں صرف اپنی موٹر سائیکل پر سوار کرنا چاہتے ہیں

aikischmid

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #37 on: September 10, 2011, 05:09:56 PM »
I was pretty concerned about all the false neutrals I was getting the first couple weeks I had my G5. But someone said it just takes some time getting used to, building a relationship and learning about the bike - weird mystic mojo type stuff that I of course thought was nonsense. But guess what? I haven't had a single false neutral at all in the past couple weeks (I've only had the bike like a month), and I attribute that to just riding it, and learning it, and building a relationship with it. So weird I know, but it's the way it's been for me!
2011 Royal Enfield G5 Classic, British Racing Green

barenekd

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #38 on: September 10, 2011, 05:56:57 PM »
I think that's the way it works for about all the Bullet owners. Once you get it figured out, then it's yours and you're stuck with it.  :-*

Quote
Elsewhere on the threads somewhere on the internets I read that holding the clutch in is bad news for the clutch, so I am always dropping my bike into new-trawl at any stop longer than a few seconds,

The bad news for the clutch when you stopped and not in neiut-ral is that the  pushrod from the actuator is dragging and doesn't have a throwout bearing to ride on, so the end is wearing down. And your clutch bearing is spinning and will wear out sooner. If it's in gear and rolling or in nootral and stopped the bearing isn't being used. On the same thing though, if you are having trouble finding newtral when you are stopped the clutch probably isn't releasing completely. Usually proper adjustment will fix that, but it could be a warped disk or uneven springs, or even a dragging clutch bearing.
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bman734

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Re: False Neutrals
« Reply #39 on: September 11, 2011, 11:58:40 AM »
I've never had a bike that didn't have some play when trying to find neutral. My C5 at first confused me because I'd have to play around a bit to find neutral coming to a stop until I remembered that fact about my other rides. Now it doesn't bother me at all.
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