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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
For openers I want to say that I've found that the Indian Thunderstroke clutch and transmission to be really great. Shifting and clutch action are very good. Gone are the days of banging trannys like the old Shovel-heads. Finding neutral from 1st or 2nd gear is effortless. BUT... I have found that in order to get such near-perfect behavior, the clutch cable has to be adjusted to almost no free-play at the lever. Depending on engine/oil temperature, shifting into 1st gear, from neutral, can result in a BANG. Shifting from 1st to 2nd can be almost as dramatic. Hmmmm... can there be a way to improve on the system?

So I bought the "Clutch Shaft Arm" from Barnett. Indian Clutch Shaft Arm

20190616_165046.jpg


Essentially, the Barnett part places the centers of the clutch shaft and the cable end closer together, so each increment of movement at the handlebar-mounted clutch lever moves the lever "arm" at the clutch shaft a bit farther than the OEM part gave. So, with the same "free play" at the clutch lever that you usually have, the Barnett part will disengage the clutch plates so they are farther apart. That increased disengagement reduces drag between the clutch's drive plates and driven plates, therefore giving a more positive disengagement between the engine and the transmission.

Installation is SIMPLE. Screw the cable adjuster (left of the front cylinder) together, remove the M6 screw at the "lever arm" just aft of the tranny and replace the OEM part with the Barnett part. Readjust the cable as it was before. Note: the OEM part is prettier than the Barnett part, what with it's external "edges" nicely rounded. How much that matters to you is your own business.

20190617_190833.jpg

How does it perform? Well, the first time I hit the lever to go into first gear, I wondered if something was wrong. It made NO NOISE. But the dashboard told me that it was in fact in 1st. Upshift into 2nd gear... same lack of noise. Time to ride...

Now with each gear change there was little to no sound emitted. In fact, what little that I do hear seems to be just the noise from the external shifting hardware as it hits the end of it's physical travel. And while I've hardly noticed it before, now there is a definite reduction in "notchiness" felt at the left foot. That's the sensation that's felt as the dogs in the transmission are unlatched and then engaged in the next gear. Basically, it shifts smoother.

Downsides? Clutch lever effort at the handlebar is greater. I'm just average in size, but I've got meat-hook hands that require gloves of XXL to XXXL. So, while I definitely noticed the increased lever effort, it still isn't a big deal. Peewee Herman types may want to stay away none the less.

Granted, I've just ridden my Roadmaster with the Barnett clutch part once so far and first impressions need to be backed up. But right now, I'm considering my $98 well spent.
 

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Something I will keep in mind but have found out if let the Engine warm up a bit in Neutral and then hold the Clutch in for 10 seconds before going into 1st Gear just get a quiet snick instead of a clunk .. Something learned from HD Clunks from Long Ago ..
 

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Visited Gerry's Bakery in Hildesheim, Germany to get this part.
Will get it tomorrow afternoon in his Tranny Shop for 95€.
That is very fast.
 

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I have an install question.... is the shaft indexed in any way so as to align the arm at the correct spot? if not how do you know where to put the arm on the shaft?

Mark
 

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Index it before you remove the stock one.
Not sure how you would do that as the new one is not the same casting as the OEM one so there would be no way to make sure it is in the same position. Anywhere you marked the OEM one wouldn’t necessarily be the same in the new one

Mark
 

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Draw a straight line from the center of the mounting shaft to the center of the socket where the cable mounts. Do the same with the new part. That way the geometry will be the same.
 

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I have has this on my skoot for quite some time and WITH stronger clutch springs, shifting is nice and I gots me a quite manly clutch pull!!

RACNRAY
 

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I find if I just keep that shift arm pivot well lubricated I don't get any of the clunking when I drop it into first. It wants to pivot freely when it moves and being down below the engine it gets dry and stiff rather quickly. I just use a bit of penetrating oil from time to time to keep it pivoting freely. Usually after a wash I will give is a spit of the penetrating oil when I do my routine checks...
 
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I have an install question.... is the shaft indexed in any way so as to align the arm at the correct spot? if not how do you know where to put the arm on the shaft?
Mark
Reinstallation:
1. Remove the screw from the Barnett part and put some Never-seize or grease on it's threads
2. Screw the cable adjuster all the way in
3. Grab the knurled shaft at the clutch cover and turn it as far as it will go in the same direction that the cable will pull it. You're just taking up a little bit of slack in the mechanism, so it won't move much.
4. Liberally grease the end of the cable, including the last 1" of cable
5. Install the cable on the Barnett part
6. While pulling the cable taught, install the part on the clutch shaft
7. Reinstall the screw on the part and snug it with a 5mm hex wrench
8. Wipe away the excess grease with a rag
9. Readjust the cable slack at the cable adjuster.
10. Ride that motorcycle!
 

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Draw a straight line from the center of the mounting shaft to the center of the socket where the cable mounts. Do the same with the new part. That way the geometry will be the same.
but the geometry won't be the same as the holes are in different places... I will see what the manual says..
 

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Reinstallation:
1. Remove the screw from the Barnett part and put some Never-seize or grease on it's threads
2. Screw the cable adjuster all the way in
3. Grab the knurled shaft at the clutch cover and turn it as far as it will go in the same direction that the cable will pull it. You're just taking up a little bit of slack in the mechanism, so it won't move much.
4. Liberally grease the end of the cable, including the last 1" of cable
5. Install the cable on the Barnett part
6. While pulling the cable taught, install the part on the clutch shaft
7. Reinstall the screw on the part and snug it with a 5mm hex wrench
8. Wipe away the excess grease with a rag
9. Readjust the cable slack at the cable adjuster.
10. Ride that motorcycle!
Peeps concerns with indexing and geometry are unfounded and are overthinking things. @theMucker has presented the EXACT manner of installation, I must point out that nmbrs 2 thru 6 are the key to proper installation. Took the words right outa my keyboard!!!

RACNRAY
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
Update...
The Barnett clutch shaft arm has definitely made all shifts on a cold engine quieter. Once warmed to operating temperatures, the improvements are less dramatic. "Clunks" seem to be a bit quieter, but are not reduced to being silent. After the engine is fully warmed up, notchiness is definitely reduced, but not gone.
IMHO the Barnett clutch shaft arm improves transmission gear changes by making them quieter, with less physical effort at the left foot. On a cold engine, the changes are more dramatic than they are after the engine and oil are fully warmed up.
Bottom line; There is a definite improvement in clutch disengagement and, as a result, transmission gear changes. But the improvement may not seem to be worth the cost to some. At almost $100 for the part, the improvement is incremental and may not seem justified to many riders. Personally, I consider the money well worth it, even though the improvement in transmission behavior is not huge. The Thunderstroke transmission is a well designed and reliable mechanism. At this stage, it seems that improvements are worth trying, but "night & day" improvements may not come easy.
 

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I received mine in the mail today and am worried about the placement of the bolt the clamps it to the shaft.. it is made with that bolt to close the the hole where the shaft goes and looks like it will damage its threads as you tighten down. Has anyone noticed this? I think I will call Barnett today and ask them

Mark
 

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I received mine in the mail today and am worried about the placement of the bolt the clamps it to the shaft.. it is made with that bolt to close the the hole where the shaft goes and looks like it will damage its threads as you tighten down. Has anyone noticed this? I think I will call Barnett today and ask them

Mark
I am not sure what the Indian clutch shaft looks like, but many such levers have this design. The splined shaft should have a relieved section to allow the clamp bolt to pass through. Now the bolt acts as an interlock to assure that the lever will not creep off of the shaft, even if it should loosen up.
 
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