new build clutch & starting issues

christopholese

New Member
Jul 27, 2014
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oklahoma
so, I just built a new bike, got everything installed, take it for a test drive and the drive chain sticks or starts to slip off of the clutch sprocket and locks the back wheel until I backup a couple of feet and it slides back into place. It also makes a grinding noise when I am moving...

I have yet to actually get the motor to fully kick in (and yes I know that a new motor is often difficult to start until fuel/oil is well into the system). Starter fluid fired it up, but it immediately died again...
 

2door

Moderator
Staff member
Sep 15, 2008
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Littleton, Colorado
Sprocket/chain alignment and chain tension are critical. Take a close look at your sprockets to see that they are aligned with each other. If you're using the kit supplied chain tensioner it too must be aligned with the chain path. That usually requires the tensioner bracket be bent/twisted a little to get the wheel to line up with the chain.
Here is a diagram that might help explain 'alignment issues'.
Note the recommended 1/2" to 3/4" chain slack (tension).

Tom
 

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christopholese

New Member
Jul 27, 2014
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oklahoma
Thank you, everything is lined up correctly, but the chain keeps binding up/slipping off INSIDE the clutch housing causing the entire assembly to lock up. I have tried tightening the chain with both the tensioner and by pulling the tire farther back. Still does the same thing. It seems to be doing this in the same place in the chain every time...am thinking maybe the chain has a bad link? possibly bent or something? Will try another chain and see if that fixes the problem:-||
 

2door

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Staff member
Sep 15, 2008
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Littleton, Colorado
The kit chains are not the best quality. I have seen them with twists, kinks and binding rollers/side plates. A good alternative is industrial #41 chain.

There is also the possibility that the drive sprocket teeth have sharp edges that are catching on the chain. Many builders will suggest that the sprocket teeth be filed/ground/sanded smooth at their outside edges. Of course I'm sure you know the chain needs lubrication. A dry chain will bind.

One test you can do with your current chain is to drag it across your finger, end to end, and watch how it bends over the curve. You might be able to detect a mal-formed or poorly assembled link. (you'll get a dirty finger doing this) :)

Good luck and let us know what you find or if you need more suggestions.

Tom
 

christopholese

New Member
Jul 27, 2014
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oklahoma
Was running with the factory chain
am going to try an aftr market chain tonight

.can u suggest a cheap but effective grease? Was told that vasaline would wprk well
 

2door

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Staff member
Sep 15, 2008
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Littleton, Colorado
Grease? For the chain? You'll get lots of opinions about the best chain lube but most will agree that you'll want a more fluid type lubrication as opposed to grease. This is because the lubrication needs to penetrate into the rollers and pins. Grease might work on the outside surfaces but there should be something to lube those other critical parts.

Personally I use chain saw bar & chain lube. It lubricates but is thick enough that it doesn't get thrown off as much as a thinner lubricant will.
As I said, you'll get a lot of suggestions based on the success others have had with whatever they use to lube their chains.

Tom