Don't Neglect Clutch Maintenance on your Vehicle

Published in the July 2018 Issue July 2018 Feature Jerry Mathews - Starting Line Products

Regular maintenance is needed on centrifugal clutches, but often neglected. The No. 1 thing you can do to extend the service life of your clutches is keep them clean.

During wet weather months, it is not so bad, but in the hot, dry summer when the dust gets deep, I highly suggest periodically removing the clutch cover and blowing the clutches out with compressed air. You may need to blow them out after each ride if the dust is bad enough.

When dust and dirt gets sucked into your clutch intake, it circulates in the clutch area, penetrating the bushings, bearings and sliding surfaces and causing them to stick and bind, which results in excessive heat, premature clutch wear and eventual clutch component and/or belt failure. There are kits on the market to filter the clutch intake air and keep more of the dirt out. SLP offers several but each chassis/engine is a bit different. However, they essentially are performing similar tasks—keeping the clutches clean.

Periodically inspect the condition of your weight bushings and rollers. If running hard in dirty or hot conditions with a heavy load (for example sand or mud), this inspection should be done at least every 500 miles. The weight bushings are replaceable on some models (most aftermarket weights have replaceable bushings as do some OEM weights).

When they get too much play in them, the tips of the weights will move over on the roller and this side-loading of the roller will cause the roller bushing to fail prematurely. If the roller bushings are worn, the entire roller and pin that it rides on must be replaced. If one roller/pin assembly is worn and needs replacing, we recommend replacing all three as the other two will most likely fail soon. These bushings are meant to be run dry, so never apply lubricant to them. If you let the bushings go too long, they can wear to the point that the weight as well as the spider assembly becomes damaged, requiring full clutch replacement.



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