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post #1 of 30 (permalink) Old 04-18-2017, 03:25 AM Thread Starter
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Gear selection problem

I did a 370 kilometre ride today and on the way back the gears started playing up. I first noticed it on rapid deceleration where I went down the gears and it wouldn't shift lower than 3rd,it was just stuck. No problem going back up the box. Then I went to do a turn across a two lane Highway and it was stuck in 4th,not good. On the next junction I shifted down to 2nd but couldn't get 1st. The problem then restricted itself to not finding 1st. Stopped for an hour, dropped my daughter off, started again, all was well. Then I had a mountain pass to climb up, at the very last hairpin at the top, stuck in 3rd again, tight hairpin steep climb, not happy, clutch work got me through that. Then ok again. 20 kilometres later, shifts were ok, then a rolling junction where I turned, shifting 6th to 5th ok, then stuck, went through at walking pace, up down up down, it freed itself, down down down. Suddenly Error 523 appeared as the engine light came on. Then I dropped down another mountain pass hitting 6 hairpins faster than usual as I no longer trusted the gearbox. Refuelled at the bottom, no further shift problems on the rest of the journey, about 10 kilometres. So, it's 6.30pm,I will ring the dealer in the morning.... Anyone else have this problem? My only other observation is that the selector seemed to be too high or too low for the gear I was in. I will admit to changing the bushes on the gear lever, could it be an adjustment issue? But if it was, why the Error 523? 2017 XCT.

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post #2 of 30 (permalink) Old 04-18-2017, 04:43 AM
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Are you hearing any noise from the tranny area? Specifically, a pinging or ringing type noise at idle or if you rev the bike in neutral?

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post #3 of 30 (permalink) Old 04-18-2017, 04:44 AM Thread Starter
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I cannot recall any noises, apart from the usual. I will check that out in the morning. What would such a noise indicate?

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post #4 of 30 (permalink) Old 04-18-2017, 07:38 AM
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Is it possible that the new bushings cause the shift lever to be tight on its pivot such that sometimes it does not spring fully back to its proper untouched location between shifts? This would have the same symptoms as pressing the shift lever but not letting your foot come up or down far enough thus keeping the lever from returning up or down far enough to be ready for the next shift. A tight or sticky bushing would also explain the intermittent nature of your problem. Sometimes the bushing would be grabbing the lever shaft and sometimes it would not.

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post #5 of 30 (permalink) Old 04-18-2017, 07:41 AM Thread Starter
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Vinish, I like your thinking, I will go back to the original bushes before contacting the dealer. Be good to know what error code 523 is though.

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post #6 of 30 (permalink) Old 04-18-2017, 08:08 AM
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Up-Tick Distance?

1) I'll second what @Vinish is saying.

I replaced -- once, so far -- the bushings on '12 XCT. I used the factory nylon(?) bushings for my replacement, because I'd read too much about the tight tolerances of the metal ones, where many people using those replacements had to use sandpaper and suchlike to make them fit correctly. I'm not saying that that's a lot of work -- the sanding -- but I just didn't want to deal with it.

And the degree of side-to-side slop isn't particularly bothersome to me, but I could see, after a few years, that it was getting worse. I would generally check this side-to-side slop whenever I was at a Vic dealer. All the brand new floor models seem to exhibit this.

Which brings me to one question for you: what prompted you to change the bushings, in the first place, on what I gather is a fairly new bike? Not trying to be a smart-ass here, just trying to gather information.

2) Back in 2012, I had trouble downshifting my brand new XCT for a few weeks. I thought something was wrong, but eventually figured out that I was not letting my foot rise HIGH ENOUGH between shifts.

That is, the distance required for the lever to move GOING UP, to complete the shift, was much longer/higher than on any other bike that I was used to. (And I've ridden a fair number of bikes, as a result of my being an old geezer, riding demos at Americade by me, and also a former MSF instructor, with maybe 20 bikes to warm up before each class.)

Let's say, coming to a red light, I might bang down through three or four gears, all the while holding the clutch in and not letting out, to get to first. I would get locked into, say, second gear a lot. The solution for me was to just make sure I was raising my foot higher than I was doing, in between stomps. This worked fine for me, and I no longer had the problem. (Yes, there are linkage adjustments and that sort of thing you can make too, but just raising my foot a little higher, to let the shifter complete its "throw" on the up-tick, did the trick for me, and became a simple habit change.)

3) You might want to make sure the clutch freeplay is set to the proper specs. There's something in the shop manual on this, and I also recall it's covered in at least one of WitchDoctor's videos.

4) I have no idea why you're getting an error code. Haven't heard of that before, with respect to shifting. Maybe you wound up lugging the engine too much, and the computer eventually complained. You shifting at high enough RPMs (which is less than sport bikes, certainly, but higher than your typical H-D)?

5) Once you do get this resolved, the neutral finder on these bikes is a really nice feature. That's the one where you're stopped, and you can just flick up, and you're in neutral, instead of worrying about going into second. I think Kawasaki popularized this with a bunch of models over the years, but the Vics do it well, too. Just keep in mind that when taking off, you want to going at least 10 or 15 MPH before shifting to second; if you try to shift at, say, 5 MPH, the neutral finder would still be doing its thing.
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post #7 of 30 (permalink) Old 04-18-2017, 08:51 AM
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I'll let you try all the obvious first, ...go back to the last thing you changed or played with.
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post #8 of 30 (permalink) Old 04-18-2017, 09:02 AM
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Originally Posted by mark.price.9026 View Post
I did a 370 kilometre ride today and on the way back the gears started playing up. I first noticed it on rapid deceleration where I went down the gears and it wouldn't shift lower than 3rd,it was just stuck. No problem going back up the box. Then I went to do a turn across a two lane Highway and it was stuck in 4th,not good. On the next junction I shifted down to 2nd but couldn't get 1st. The problem then restricted itself to not finding 1st. Stopped for an hour, dropped my daughter off, started again, all was well. Then I had a mountain pass to climb up, at the very last hairpin at the top, stuck in 3rd again, tight hairpin steep climb, not happy, clutch work got me through that. Then ok again. 20 kilometres later, shifts were ok, then a rolling junction where I turned, shifting 6th to 5th ok, then stuck, went through at walking pace, up down up down, it freed itself, down down down. Suddenly Error 523 appeared as the engine light came on. Then I dropped down another mountain pass hitting 6 hairpins faster than usual as I no longer trusted the gearbox. Refuelled at the bottom, no further shift problems on the rest of the journey, about 10 kilometres. So, it's 6.30pm,I will ring the dealer in the morning.... Anyone else have this problem? My only other observation is that the selector seemed to be too high or too low for the gear I was in. I will admit to changing the bushes on the gear lever, could it be an adjustment issue? But if it was, why the Error 523? 2017 XCT.

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The metals ones are garbage. Like Bill Said, the tolerances are too tight. I took mine off and put the plastic ones back in and no problems.

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post #9 of 30 (permalink) Old 04-18-2017, 10:08 AM
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You don't have to switch back to the old bushings to test if they are causing the problem. The next time this problem arises, merely use your toe or heel to assure the shift lever has returned all the way to its proper location before trying another shift.

G'day,

Vinish

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post #10 of 30 (permalink) Old 04-18-2017, 10:52 AM
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I installed WD's bushings on other's Cross bikes and had little or no binding problem. I lubed all the moving surfaces well, and adjusted the shift lever height so low that when the foot is slipped under it, most of the slack is taken up. Then I instruct my "customer" to preload the shifter - that is, lightly pressure it so that when the clutch is pulled in, it will easily slip into the next gear, and quietly too. They are amazed at the difference.
I don't know if that helps this situation, but this is what comes to my mind for now.

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