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Clutch Spring Quandary for my 1951 ES2

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Clutch Spring Quandary for my 1951 ES2

Posted by grant_macneill at June 27. 2017

Early in my rebuild I ordered new clutch springs from RGM or Andover,  thinking that since new springs are cheap, why not replace them.

I noticed today that the new ones are much lighter gauge than the “originals”

I can compress them by hand where the old ones are much stiffer.

When driving the bike the past two years, I did not detect that the clutch was stiff. My only issue was drag and difficulty getting into first.

Is there an advantage to re-using the old stronger springs ?

Should I stay with the old ones or swap to the new ones? The old ones look fine and are all equal length.

It occurred to me that the stronger springs might be a little harder to balance which may have contributed to the clutch drag I experienced ( but perhaps I’ve got this totally wrong)

Are the old ones “original” standard gauge and the new ones “wrong” ?

Possibly these heavy springs were meant for a competition clutch??

Any comments of advice would be gratefully received

Grant MacNeill

Toronto

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Re: Clutch Spring Quandary for my 1951 ES2

Posted by robert_tuck at June 27. 2017

Your clutch springs are unlikely to be the problem with gear selection unless they are not lifting evenly. You want the lightest springs that will still be strong enough to not slip.  The length and strength of springs will vary with the different  clutches that were fitted over the years. Check plain plates for flatness, check that the back of the clutch does not press against the sleeve gear , check the bearing for play, too much will allow plates to rub inside the drum and on the center where they should not.look for marking. I have fitted oversize rollers to restrict play to about 2 thou. Primary chain needs slack at the tightest point.

Re: Clutch Spring Quandary for my 1951 ES2

Posted by George Phillips at June 27. 2017
"It occurred to me that the stronger springs might be a little harder to balance". I think you'll find Grant that the spring retaining bolts should be fully tightened so balancing should not come into it. If the lighter springs don't slip then why not use them? It'll make the clutch easier to operate.

Re: Clutch Spring Quandary for my 1951 ES2

Posted by robert_tuck at June 27. 2017

After many years of suffering an indiferent gearchange  and swapping parts I have now got it sorted . With machines as old as this anything is possible with wrong parts or just poorly made parts  in the mix.

Re: Clutch Spring Quandary for my 1951 ES2

Posted by George Phillips at June 27. 2017
How was it sorted, Robert? Were clutch springs involved?

Re: Clutch Spring Quandary for my 1951 ES2

Posted by robert_tuck at June 28. 2017

Hi George,  If you read my post/thread   "loose clutch bearing 60 99"  you may find that short thick Atlas springs are stronger than thin long 99 ones and that spiders and bearings can be a source of problems hard to pinpoint.

Re: Clutch Spring Quandary for my 1951 ES2

Posted by robert_tuck at June 28. 2017

Buoyed up by my success with the 99 clutch I'm moving on to the Atlas ,be prepared for more exciting revelations!!.But that will have to wait, As I'm sruggling to convince the VW Golf that my kind of "fuzzy logic" is better than its.

Re: Clutch Spring Quandary for my 1951 ES2

Posted by grant_macneill at June 29. 2017

Previously George Phillips wrote:

"It occurred to me that the stronger springs might be a little harder to balance". I think you'll find Grant that the spring retaining bolts should be fully tightened so balancing should not come into it. If the lighter springs don't slip then why not use them? It'll make the clutch easier to operate.


Thanks George,

about a dozen friends took my ES2 for a spin and everybody thought the clutch was nice and light; changed gears beautifully too and the only grief was a little drag when sitting at a light

(it was the clunk in the very worn rear sprocket that got their attention)

What I hoped to learn was which springs are "correct" as they are a very different gauge of spring. Perhaps the old ones are the correct ones and current suppliers can't get a spring of that length in the correct gauge ??? I guess I'll try the new ones since everything else is either new or carefully restored. Just tighten down all the way as instructed and see how she works. but wish I knew which ones were correct.

if anybody out there can identify the heavier springs I would be grateful indeed.

Grant

Re: Clutch Spring Quandary for my 1951 ES2

Posted by George Phillips at June 29. 2017
I don't know if it helps but the springs in my '55 ES2 cannot be compressed by hand and certainly look more like the lower ones in your first pic. George
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