I thought it was about time I fitted new cables to the fronr brake and clutch on my 650SS,as they've both been on the bike for years, so I ordered one of each from Venhill Engineering. They arrived this morning. However, they don't fit. The purpose of the new clutch cable, apart from the current one being old, was to try to lighten the clutch action. I know that the 650SS has a reputation for a heavy clutch, but I could do with the forearms and hands of Popeye to make it comfortable.
Firstly, the fact that neither cable fits: both outers are too long (or the inners are too short) is obviously a concern. The levers on my bike are both 1 and 1/8" pivot length, and both have cable adjusters on them (albeit the clutch one has been 'modified' slightly). I had already been mulling over whether I should purchase new levers with a reduced pivot distance in order to ease the effort required at the lever - I was planning on 7/8", but that was based on thinking the current levers were only 1" pivot.
Secondly, offering up the cables roughly would suggest that they would fit if the levers were the type without adjusters.
So my query is, does anyone know what type of levers were fitted as original equipment? And does anyone have experience of using the reduced pivot levers?
I had an orriginal pair of levers on my 1960 dommy. which should be the same leverage as yours I think. The clutch is 7/8" centers (no adjuster) and the front brake is 1" centers (no adjuster) , I think the SS got the ball ends. I always assumed my levers had the same centers ,I was wrong!. I have changed the brake lever to 7/8" in order to get a bit more leverage ,but the reduced travel ( and a longer drum lever) has meant very regular close adjustment needed. I have come accross SS/Atlas pattern clutch springs that look ok but are far too hard . The only way I could ID the problem was with a Micrometer as the wire used is slightly greater than the correct items. The 99 clutch is now perfect but the Atlas is too heavy still for wimpy son with tennis elbow. Wondering about a Kegler modification.
Robert is correct about the correct lever 7/8 pivot, both of my bikes 650SS & Atlas have after market levers with adjusters-
For cables as the adjuster was already on the handlebar I went to Commando type featherlite [no adjuster at gearbox end] but from memory you need a longer [ maybe 60"] cable, the nylon lined featherlite are a lot more user friendly.
The levers on my bike (99) are both 7/8" pivot centres and what a difference it makes to the 1 1/8" ones. Neither lever has an adjuster. My clutch and front brake (tls) are both two finger jobs which makes riding around town or urban areas a pleasure. And off the peg cables have fitted straight on.
Both levers available from Feked.
When I researched this for my 1964 650ss I came to the conclusion that the std fit was:
- Clutch, ball end 7/8 pivot point, no adjuster. The correct lever makes a significant improvement to the clutch pull
- Brake, ball end 1 1/16 pivot, no adjuster and integral choke lever. I think someone told me they fitted 1 1/16 pivot points as they thought the brake might be too sharp - as if !!!!! Whether this was an urban myth or not I don't know but fitting a 7/8 pivot should improve the brake and is what I plan to fit when I get round to it.
All of these lever combinations are available from AMC Spares who provide an excellent service
The above information seems to stack with all the period photos I came across ……….. but may be wrong.
The Feked lists are mostly for 1" bars, a bit confusing. The AMC classic lists look easier to follow.