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Location: Brooklyn, NY
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For those who haven't read my other thread, I purchased a 2006 R6 last Saturday. The bike is scratch free and only has 6,000 miles on it. The previous owner said he changed the oil every 1000 miles.
When I start from first gear I usually release the clutch to the friction zone and then apply enough throttle to take off smoothly (Usually around 1,500-2,500 RPM). As I almost get out of the friction zone, I feel the clutch plate slip as I fully disengage the clutch. It feels like the plates are skipping off each other. This happens when I keep the throttle and clutch slightly outside the friction zone (on the way to disengaging the clutch).
My question: Is this the "slipper clutch" doing its job so I have nothing to worry about? I've never rode a bike with a slipper clutch before. Should I just practice a more smooth take off or does my clutch need adjustment?
Also, in most gears, the shifting doesn't feel very smooth. It could the fact that I haven't familiarized myself with the bike completely but it could also be old oil and/or an abused tranny/clutch. I doubt a Ninja 250 had smoother shifting than an R6...
Owner said the bike was never stunted on. He works on cars/bikes. A nice guy so I believe what he said.
So, does the bike need an oil change?
New clutch? Do I need to learn to ride smoother?
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The slipper part of the clutch only comes into play on deceleration, not when taking off. You might just need to get used to the bike.
Yeah, slipper clutches don't feel any different when taking off.
Just for future reference.... you know when you let off the throttle and you get a lot of engine braking? That's the back wheel driving the engine.
On a slipper clutch, it only lets you transmit power one way. So the engine delivers power to the wheels, but when the wheels try to slow down the engine, it's like you are holding the clutch in and power doesn't get transmitted through.
Now, it's not like it completely disengages... it lets SOME power through. Like you're slipping the clutch. Hence the name.
Mechanically, there are several ways to accomplish this. I'm not going to get into that unless you're actually curious.
But basically, a slipper clutch is designed to make part-throttle situations smoother while you are in corner entry, and to help make downshifts smoother. And it does both really beautifully. I was pretty surprised at how much easier it was to be smooth the first time I rode a bike with one. And the aftermarket ones work even better than the OEM-style ones.
In short- change the oil, adjust the clutch cable, and have someone with a little more experience ride the bike around the parking lot and see if they notice anything. Could be that you're just not used to the new bike.
My bmw uses a dry, single plate clutch like on a car. Instead of a wet, multi plate clutch like a motorcycle. And it's hydraulic instead of cable operation. Talk about getting used to a new feeling.... geeze....
But man- it's smooth.
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