What’s causing Suzuki V-Strom’s iffy gearchange?

Published: 20 February 2012

Q. I've had a Suzuki DL1000K2 for the last six years, it has only covered some 22,000 miles and has never let me down but it does have a sticky gear change.

Sometimes it snicks up or down sweetly, sometimes it will change with a “clack”, other times more a “clang” than “clack”. I always use the clutch for up and down changes, and clutchless changes make little difference.

However I have noticed that when the engine is cold the gearchanges are as smooth as you like, snicking into the next one just right. I suspect the clutch is dragging a little when fully warmed up.

I have always used good quality semi-synthetic 10/40 oil such as Silkolene or Putoline which I change every year.
Don Wheeler, Brighton

A. It’s possible that there is clutch drag as the engine warms up and the oil thins out, although I don’t think the oil is to blame. A simple check for drag is to see if you can change gear cleanly from first to neutral and up to second when you are at a standstill.

Those lower gearchanges are potentially the most problematic as the jump in gear ratios is the greatest, further up the box they are closer together.

Finally, it could be your gearchange speed, if you allow the revs to drop out of the optimum range for the next ratio there will be some mechanical noise as the gears try to mesh together.

Try snicking them through as quickly as possible without the clutch on upshifts to see if matters improve.

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