You can change the lever to a longer throw type (Honda has the longest), but then the pull is harder....so you install WR250 springs to comensate.....
ARC makes optional perch/lever combos with different lever ratios.....I run the Honda leverage ratio with (3) WR250 springs, and no washers.
A Li Ion battery will turn it faster, allowing it to start in gear.....but you should be warned...if the clutch drags, and you start it in gear a lot, you will put a lot of load on the starter clutch, and wear it out prematurely.
What happens if you take almost all the slack out of the cable, at the perch.....does it still drag badly when hot?
THAT is EXACTLY what I have been looking for! Thanks for the link Kah Ran Nee! I am thinking this might be the ONLY way to cure it but sure did not want to build a new one ( I could do it!) but THAT would probably take me at least a month! I have actually been trying to figure out a way to off set the lever further out on the bar some so I could get more pull/length of travel in the lever just to see if that actually would help.
When I first got this bike (probably in '04) it made this gawd awful grinding sound and would actually stall the motor when starting it sometimes. One time on a BIG long clearing ride (we cleared about a five mile section of woods that had not been cleared in 4-5 years so LOTS of downed trees and re-starts all day long) it drained the battery down to where it was a kick start only. Turned out it had eaten the starter clutch and that was the grinding noise. I took the starter clutch all apart and there is a spring inside it much like the one you see inside an oil seal, but a lot longer. That was stretched, had been pinched, and squashed in areas and the weird shaped sort of three sided rollers that make the starter clutch function in one direction only had about half of them all chipped, broken, and some were ground up pretty well. Luckily all the bigger "chunks" were trapped inside the starter clutch due to its design.
I had to replace the starter clutch and then modified the starter gear and case to a 2004 model year to prevent this happening again. Was a pricey upgrade but worth it if it would cure the problems.
I never did ride the 450 all that much though due to this ongoing starting issue from the dragging clutch and would usually leave it in the garage and take my 400 although by the end of the day I was beat from all the kick starting, even though the 400 is a one kick start most times. Well, till near the end of the day when I was most beat! This explains the real low mileage on the 450 as well. It only had 300 miles on it when I picked it up from PO.
Just last Fall I finally retired the 400 to DS rides ONLY (or occasionally running around town as they are both street legal) and the 450 has been outfitted with a chainsaw rack and pressed intro FULL TIME dirt service. (We have so many trees coming down due to all the past forest fires you do not go anywhere without at least one rider carrying a saw!) So this Spring is when I really started to attack this issue and try to get to the bottom of the hard starting due to the drag. I think a lot of these other people who complain about hard starting issues are also brought on by the clutch drag but quite a few of them are looking in other areas for a fix....like carb/jetting, or hot start issues, when in fact they are brought on by a little clutch drag slowing the motor turn over speed down just a little to far for a quick start.
I have the cable adjusted to where there is almost no play right now and have even tightened it up past that point trying it out and the drag is STILL/ALWAYS there.
I am going to take out all the parts in the whole push rod assembly and measure/compare them to the ones that came with the other clutch parts that came with the clutch I picked up off ebay and see if there might be some wear or difference that could account for the problem, but at this point sort of doubt I will find the solution there.
I may drill even MORE holes in one of those clutch bosses as this did make a huge improvement in being able to find neutral as well as cut the starting drag down noticeably, but not enough to where it will start easily while in gear, so maybe that is the route to take?
At any rate this adjustable perch is exactly what I think this scooter needs to make it (and me!) much happier so THANKS again!
I will update as to what I find.........