Lost 5th gear - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-11-2012, 05:52 AM Thread Starter
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Lost 5th gear

I noticed my oil looked a little low two days ago. I added less than 1/2 a quart to bring it up to the full line with the bike sitting level. Yesterday on the way to work, I lost 5th gear. Shifting up from 4th or down from 6th had the same affect. 5th gear is the same as neutral. My question is, If I over filled it slightly could that cause the transmission to not go into 5th gear. I have 46,000 miles on my 08 Versys and have used synthetic sport bike 10w40 at every oil change. Last night I changed the oil and filter. We will see if it works any better. If not, I'm upgrading to a Ninja 1000 with hard bags.

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post #2 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-11-2012, 06:48 AM
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Bro what's going on, has it changed?
Sounds like you may get a new bike.

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post #3 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-11-2012, 07:24 AM
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post #4 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-11-2012, 08:13 AM
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Bent shift fork, not caused by oil overfill.
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post #5 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-11-2012, 10:07 AM Thread Starter
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The other gears shift as usual. Sometimes I can get it to go in to 5th if I shift up and down quickly. What does a bent shift fork repair involve?

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post #6 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-12-2012, 12:38 AM
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No 5th gear?

I'm a retired (forceibly,heart attack) ex pro bike mechanic. One of the many selling points of this engine design was that it has a cassette style tranmission. E.A. the entire trans can be pulled out with the engine IN the frame. Pulled mine (09) just before the warranty ran out to remove the nuisance positive neutral finder (3 steel ball bearings) and to inspect. Total hrs ~ 3. You'll likely need 2 gears, 1 shift fork, and maybe a shift drum. Est. $300.00 parts. Could be that a circlip has simply come ajar?
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post #7 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-12-2012, 03:57 AM
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Blame i nsomnia, researched your 5th gear problem. The most likely cause for your sudden and intermittent loss of 5th gear is that the input shift fork rod has broken or come adrift. This rod is held in place by the oil pump chain guide, the fixing bolts may have come loose. If so, maybe fixable by simply removing the clutch cover & clutch assy/oil pump gear and reaffixing. CAUTION !!! if this rod drops into the tranmission gears or backs into the clutch assy if could cause a rear wheel lock-up. Advise you to decist operation and get this ck'd immediately
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post #8 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-12-2012, 07:24 AM
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post #9 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-13-2012, 09:01 AM Thread Starter
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Now my concern is finding a competent motorcycle mechanic in my area. When I had my valves adjusted, the guy was a slob. He left oil on the engine case, fingerprints all over the bike and I was missing 3 screws. They were the largest bike shop in my area. I'll start the hunt at lunch today.

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post #10 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-13-2012, 09:36 AM
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post #11 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-13-2012, 06:12 PM Thread Starter
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Yes, it was Extreme Powersports. There the largest in the area and they know it. Im going to Adams Motorsports tomorrow to look at a Ninja 1000. The price looks good.

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post #12 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-14-2012, 12:48 AM
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What are your plans for the Versys? Red or Black? Are you going to trade or you consider selling as is. My Blue 09 is a keeper and I my need spare parts. Heck I need both upper cowlings & a swingarm now. Looking to marry some parts. Just curious, what shape are your front rotors in at 46K? Mine are on or slightly below the wear limit at 38K
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post #13 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-16-2012, 08:39 PM Thread Starter
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I'm keeping the bike. I found what is hopefully a good bike shop. Depending on what parts are going to cost, I may have them service the clutch and forks while they have it.

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post #14 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-24-2012, 07:08 PM Thread Starter
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Ok, Time for an update. THe shift drum lost one of the ribs that shift it into 5th gear. Could have been a casting defect. Easy fix for this shop. Total repair will be $450.00. Because I was thinking closer to $600.00 I asked him to replace the clutch friction disks as well. That brings the repair up to $600.00. It would be cool if I can get another 40K out of it.

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post #15 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-24-2012, 07:41 PM
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Ok, Time for an update. THe shift drum lost one of the ribs that shift it into 5th gear. Could have been a casting defect. Easy fix for this shop. Total repair will be $450.00. Because I was thinking closer to $600.00 I asked him to replace the clutch friction disks as well. That brings the repair up to $600.00. It would be cool if I can get another 40K out of it.
Sounds like a great fix! I would have been worried about a lockup as posted earlier. That could have been bad.
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post #16 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-24-2012, 08:50 PM
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post #17 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-25-2012, 08:38 AM
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Ok, Time for an update. THe shift drum lost one of the ribs that shift it into 5th gear. Could have been a casting defect. Easy fix for this shop. Total repair will be $450.00. Because I was thinking closer to $600.00 I asked him to replace the clutch friction disks as well. That brings the repair up to $600.00. It would be cool if I can get another 40K out of it.
Good job and thanks for posting! Many of us are reading and learning! Hope you get your extra 40K!





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post #18 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-26-2012, 02:08 PM
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Originally Posted by T Cothron View Post
I'm a retired (forceibly,heart attack) ex pro bike mechanic. One of the many selling points of this engine design was that it has a cassette style tranmission. E.A. the entire trans can be pulled out with the engine IN the frame. Pulled mine (09) just before the warranty ran out to remove the nuisance positive neutral finder (3 steel ball bearings) and to inspect. Total hrs ~ 3. You'll likely need 2 gears, 1 shift fork, and maybe a shift drum. Est. $300.00 parts. Could be that a circlip has simply come ajar?
Tell me more, I could care less about the positive neutral finder and if it shifts smoother, I am going to do the same
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post #19 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-27-2012, 08:52 AM
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Tell me more, I could care less about the positive neutral finder and if it shifts smoother, I am going to do the same
Jim-K. 1st do you have the factory service manual? Although because of the Versys design this is not a long laborious deal, it is pretty deep for a layman. Details of the clutch removal are in chapter 6. Further details of the tranmission removal begin in 9-31. These instructions must be followed to the letter especially in regards to lining up the "oil holes" from removed gears or bushings. The neutral finder operation is explained on page 9-40. It is located under 5th gear on the output shaft, (which is the second gear inboard from the RH side). Takes a little patience joguling this gear with the output shaft held vertical(1st gear removed), but when this gear slides off the shaft there are 3 5/32" (.156) steel balls inside this gear. reassemble without these balls and you have voided the neutral finder.
I originally did this to A: inspect the trans before the warranty expired as I had missed the shift to 6th gear several times and B: I'm a very lightweight rider (137#s) and I routinely start from 2nd gear. Yes, I do feel it shifts better, then again use (I'm now at 38,800) has helped also. This trans design has many involute splines rather than the few square edged ones that were in use in the old days (stronger in my opinion, I believe this trans could handle 3X the power it must deal with) but the design does add friction to shifts until warn in.
I've since made customs rearsets resulting in a similar footpeg position as the 650R and did away with the linkage. Better shifting still. I've found that at least in my example the shift shaft OD is too loose a fit in the support needle bearing on the left side. In time I'm going to weld the OD up and turn it back down for a precision fit.
Anyone willing to bring their ride to North Central TN, I'll perform this mod (neutral finder removal and trans inspection) for $180.00 and necessary parts, if any. I only needed oil and filter, broke no gaskets. Only the clutch cover and shift shaft cover gaskets are disturbed anyway. Takes about 3 to 4 hours with a cool engine if damage is found.
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post #20 of 25 (permalink) Old 07-27-2012, 10:03 AM
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Cool... You mean if damage is "not" found?
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