rekluse auto clutch in XR650R


22 replies to this topic
  • airheadpilot

Posted April 05, 2006 - 08:33 AM

#1

I'm considering buying a BRP that has been modified to have a Rekluse auto clutch. The clutch lever has been completely bypassed and the rear brake is routed to the left handlebar lever. I've never ridden a bike that doesn't have a clutch lever - what are people's thoughts on this setup?

Thanks,

Andrew

  • qadsan

Posted April 05, 2006 - 10:16 AM

#2

If you're good at clutchless shifting (particularly downshifts) and you don't plan to do a lot of shifting at high engine RPM, then it may be a great setup for you.

If you want the clutch lever back, you've got a couple choices. You can buy the rekluse clutch perch option and this will allow you to use the clutch lever at lower engine RPM or you can simply remove the rekluse product and go back to the stock clutch setup. The rekluse product is pretty much a pressure plate assembly and a thrust bearing that uses the stock clutch basket and stock clutch disks. To put it back to stock, I believe you'd need to buy the stock pressure plate, stock springs and the lifter assembly, unless the bikes comes with those stock parts.

When I buy a used bike, I'm always concerend about how the bike has been shifted because I see poor shifting practices all too often. Pay special attention to any shifting issues (popping out of gear, etc) with that bike just to be on the safe side.

We run a rekluse on some of our bikes and it's a neat product.

  • snaggleXR650

Posted April 05, 2006 - 01:58 PM

#3

I read somewhere that some bikes trannys didn't like the autoclutches very well. I thought the 650R was one of them. I guess I'm old school, I just don't see the benefit of an autoclutch. I like to have total control of shifting and slipping/not slipping the clutch. Maybe I would change my mind if I rode a bike with one though... Good luck.

  • Old_Man_Time

Posted April 05, 2006 - 05:51 PM

#4

I read somewhere that some bikes trannys didn't like the autoclutches very well. I thought the 650R was one of them. I guess I'm old school, I just don't see the benefit of an autoclutch. I like to have total control of shifting and slipping/not slipping the clutch. Maybe I would change my mind if I rode a bike with one though... Good luck.


I run a Rekluse on my XR650R. It is great in the really technical stuff. Stopping and starting on steep hills is also a plus. I retained the clutch lever on my bike to help with the shifting. I am beginning to believe that the Rekluse auto-clutch shortens the life of the clutch on the powerful XR650R. It is a cool product and very worth while if you love to do slow tight technical stuff. Not much benifit if the vast majority of your riding is wide open throttle.

  • BWB63

Posted April 05, 2006 - 07:23 PM

#5

Mine just blew apart. It lasted one year. I have talked to Al Youngworth several times and he has promised me a new and improved version but, it hasn't happened. I have to take mine apart to find out what gave up to make it quit.
I am about to give up on the Rekluse. I will call and give him another try.

  • Old_Man_Time

Posted April 06, 2006 - 04:22 AM

#6

Mine just blew apart. It lasted one year. I have talked to Al Youngworth several times and he has promised me a new and improved version but, it hasn't happened. I have to take mine apart to find out what gave up to make it quit.
I am about to give up on the Rekluse. I will call and give him another try.


What do you mean by "blew apart"? What happened?

For the last year I have been doing a lot of high speed desert riding and have had to adjust the Rekluse clutch plate gap twice which is something I never had to do when I rode it in the tighter slow stuff all the time. Last week it went so far out of adjustment I didn't think I would make it back to the truck. It was slipping that bad. I have it back into specs now and believe I will get another 6 months of trouble free riding if I continue to ride higher speed desert stuff.

I love the benifits it adds to the bike but don't like going through clutches every 1500 miles.

My buddy has one on his XR650R and hasn't had any trouble. He generally rides slower tight stuff and even in the desert he likes to smell the roses.

I would not shy away from a bike that had a Rekluse in it. In fact it would be a plus. I would want the stock clutch parts so I could take the bike back to stock if I wanted. It's pretty easy to put one in and take one out. It requires no special tools. Takes about 1 hour to 1 1/2 hours to put in or change out.

By the way that left hand operated rear break was expensive to convert. Someone laid down some cash on this bike. You could sell the auto-clutch with the hand break conversion for four hundred dollars on E-Bay if you decide you don't like it.

  • qadsan

Posted April 06, 2006 - 10:17 AM

#7

OMT, make sure your engine speed is high enough when riding at higher speeds. This is critical for the long life of the clutch plates. You don't need to keep your engine buzzing at the rev limiter by anymeans, but riding in 5th at a couple thousand RPM up a slight grade may wear the clutch plates quicker than normal with the Reklsue setup. If you're riding at higher speeds and your engine RPM isn't high enough, then you may not have enough clamping pressure on the clutch plates, which in turn will slip and wear out much quicker as opposed to having a higher clamping pressure that comes from having a higher engine RPM.

Cruising at higher speeds at lower engine RPM is not much of an issue for the stock clutch, but it can be a problem for the Rekluse setup unless the engine RPM is such that enough clamping pressure is used. The higher the engine RPM, the higher the clamping pressure up to a point. The lighter the weight of the balls, the longer you'll delay higher clamping pressures in relation to engine RPM. I don't know if you're using Tungten Carbide balls in your Rekluse or just the steel balls, but the tungsten carbide balls have a much greater mass and so they centrifuge outwards quicker to provide more clamping pressure at lower engine RPM.

One of the guys I met never had issued with his Rekluse / clutch and he used his bike for trail riding, playing, etc. Then he dual sported his bike and started using it on the freeway and started having problems with his clutch disks wearing out. I installed the heavier carbide balls in his Rekluse and he kept his engine RPM up a bit more and that solved the problem for him or at least he said so, but I never heard back from him since then.

I'm not saying this is definitely your issue, but it's something to think about.

  • Old_Man_Time

Posted April 06, 2006 - 11:51 PM

#8

OMT, make sure your engine speed is high enough when riding at higher speeds. This is critical for the long life of the clutch plates. You don't need to keep your engine buzzing at the rev limiter by anymeans, but riding in 5th at a couple thousand RPM up a slight grade may wear the clutch plates quicker than normal with the Reklsue setup. If you're riding at higher speeds and your engine RPM isn't high enough, then you may not have enough clamping pressure on the clutch plates, which in turn will slip and wear out much quicker as opposed to having a higher clamping pressure that comes from having a higher engine RPM.

Cruising at higher speeds at lower engine RPM is not much of an issue for the stock clutch, but it can be a problem for the Rekluse setup unless the engine RPM is such that enough clamping pressure is used. The higher the engine RPM, the higher the clamping pressure up to a point. The lighter the weight of the balls, the longer you'll delay higher clamping pressures in relation to engine RPM. I don't know if you're using Tungten Carbide balls in your Rekluse or just the steel balls, but the tungsten carbide balls have a much greater mass and so they centrifuge outwards quicker to provide more clamping pressure at lower engine RPM.

One of the guys I met never had issued with his Rekluse / clutch and he used his bike for trail riding, playing, etc. Then he dual sported his bike and started using it on the freeway and started having problems with his clutch disks wearing out. I installed the heavier carbide balls in his Rekluse and he kept his engine RPM up a bit more and that solved the problem for him or at least he said so, but I never heard back from him since then.

I'm not saying this is definitely your issue, but it's something to think about.


Thanks, I have been wondering about the carbide balls. I don't ride in too tall of a gear at the lower speed but at high speed in the desert I like to go for better fuel economy so I do not ride it at high rpm. I hope thats not why cause the bike gets terrible fuel mileage if I am running higher rpm. I can see your point and maybe that is the cause. I would have to try the carbide balls and see if I can still strive for better fuel mileage.

  • adam574

Posted April 07, 2006 - 01:40 AM

#9

i think one of the red flags that i see here is that this bike has a handbrake. if he was a enduro or mx rider he wouldn't have moved the rear brake to the handlebar he would have just went with no lever. i would be willing to bet a good wager that this bike has been "stunted" which isnt' a bike i would touch those guys over rev the motor all the time and i am not sure on the oil pickup but most engines are designed to pickup oil when the motor is at such a drastic angle. with the motor tilted back so much it could be likely that it wasn't picking up as much as as it should have been all the time. i understand everyone like to wheelie and stuff like that but i am ssaying imagine you go out twice a week for two hours doing slow wheelies for five minutes at a time. that could do some serious damage to a motor. just thought that might be something else to think about.

  • Old_Man_Time

Posted April 07, 2006 - 07:00 AM

#10

i think one of the red flags that i see here is that this bike has a handbrake. if he was a enduro or mx rider he wouldn't have moved the rear brake to the handlebar he would have just went with no lever. i would be willing to bet a good wager that this bike has been "stunted" which isnt' a bike i would touch those guys over rev the motor all the time and i am not sure on the oil pickup but most engines are designed to pickup oil when the motor is at such a drastic angle. with the motor tilted back so much it could be likely that it wasn't picking up as much as as it should have been all the time. i understand everyone like to wheelie and stuff like that but i am ssaying imagine you go out twice a week for two hours doing slow wheelies for five minutes at a time. that could do some serious damage to a motor. just thought that might be something else to think about.


The hand lever rear brake is very popular with trail riders. It gives a rider more brake control when standing or sitting than the foot operated rear brake could ever provide. But it does take time to get used to it. I have ridden bikes that have them and my mind kept saying clutch handle even though I was told it was a brake. In time I could have become a convert. :thumbsup:

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  • PowerCell

Posted April 07, 2006 - 07:31 AM

#11

Mine just blew apart. It lasted one year. I have talked to Al Youngworth several times and he has promised me a new and improved version but, it hasn't happened. I have to take mine apart to find out what gave up to make it quit.
I am about to give up on the Rekluse. I will call and give him another try.



I've suffered the same fate when using the Reklus... leaving me stranded twice. I've since tossed the Rekluse in the trash and went back to the Revloc. It always works perfect and never needs adjustment. Definately worth the extra $$$ in MNSHO... :thumbsup:

  • qadsan

Posted April 07, 2006 - 07:38 AM

#12

PowerCell, what parts busted on the Rekluse?

  • PowerCell

Posted April 07, 2006 - 08:22 AM

#13

I've never had any parts break. But the clutch pressure is non-linear on the Rekluse - the big bikes will smoke the clutch pack in no time. It's this way by design. That's why Al uses the outer diaphragm to retain the carbon/tungsten balls. He's trying to reduce clutch pack pressure at higher revs to help save the tranny, but on the bigger bikes it allows the pack to slip. I think he should offer the diaphragm in varying relief pressures...

Additionally, the motion of engagement is very short on the Rekluse when compared to the Revloc. This is one reason why when properly adjusted, the Rekluse will still drag a little at idle, while the Revloc will completely disengage - making neutral must easier to select.

All of this comes from more than a year of experimenting trying to get the Rekluse to hold up. I've worked closely with Shawn at Rekluse, trying every possible option. In the end, Rekluse admitted that the clutch just can't handle the torque of the big bikes.

I've had a Revloc in my 2003 525MX/c since new. Many trips down south. Many H/H's. Countless hours of abuse. One complete engine rebuild. One top end job. Yet the Revloc has never been apart and still works like new to this day.

I've been running one in my 2004 FE650e for a year now and it's been nothing short of flawless. Now I'm setting one up for the 750 and I have all the faith in the world it will be fine - even when confronted with 78 rwhp and 51 ft lbs. They're that good...


Nuff said... :thumbsup:

  • qadsan

Posted April 07, 2006 - 11:38 AM

#14

Thanks for the info.

78 rwhp and 51 ft lbs...WOW! That should be fun :thumbsup:

  • woodsryder

Posted April 13, 2006 - 07:36 PM

#15

I've used a Revloc in my CRF450 for years and even though I had some poor quality control issues, its definitely bulletproof when its right. In tight singletrack its a real benefit when you doing on-off bursts between turns all day. Our Michigan singletrack is like that. I rarely have to shift, just explode out of a turn rev it out 50 yards or less and pitch it into the next turn. Lotsa fun and no clutch arm pump or stalling in turns... just use throttle control.

I put a Rekluse in my BRP and it had the same benefits in the singletrack, but I mostly dual sported it instead and found I didn't like it any more. Any time you have to run through the gears, the clutch lever can't really over ride the clutch when the revs are high. Its too much like shifting without the clutch, real crunchy! At least for dual sport, I prefer a manual clutch. But for tight Michigan singletrack an auto clutch is pure magic.

I also feel the two clutches had different personalities. The revloc engaged in a shorter period of time then had way more clamping pressure than stock. I do believe clutch life was greater because it spends most of its time locked up tight. The Rekluse is super tunable but still seemed to engage over a wider rpm range, and didn't clamp as hard. He uses that as a sales point, but I think the 650 maybe needs more clamping pressure. As previously mentioned riding around in higher gears at lower revs means it slips a little every time you roll the throttle from off to on. I noticed this when riding all day with a new rider and my clutch plates turned blue. The Revloc doesn't do that

  • qadsan

Posted April 13, 2006 - 08:51 PM

#16

Great post woodsryder!

I also ended up pulling the rekluse from my d/s 650r, but I still have it and like it for the most part in my other 650r setup for off road use and it's held up very well for me. On the 650R that I use for off-roading, it seems I'm either running WOT or have the throttle closed and the brakes on hard while getting ready for the next turn. If I am cruising or riding trails, then I keep the engine RPM up high enough to minimize the chance of slip and I think that's been my saving grace, but I really like the way it works for the most part. In my d/s bike, I was doing a lot of start / stop stuff in the city and cruised more often at lower engine RPM (too much slip when doing this). I really liked the way the auto clutch worked for on road fun, but the clutch plates were definitely beginning to wear much quicker, so I pulled the rekluse when I seen the writing on the wall.

Shifting definitely gets crunchy for me too with the rekluse when trying to shift at higher engine RPM and the clutch function just doesn't do enough to properly disengage things if the shift is dependant on the clutch. The only way I've been able to downshift smoothly from higher RPM with the rekluse is to either wait for the engine speed to drop and then blip the throttle while shifting or momentarily lock the rear brake to reduce the rear wheel speed and follow up with a quick blip / downshift and that seems to work more often than not, when I do it correctly.

The Revloc definitely looks like a stout product and your comment about "riding around in higher gears at lower revs means it slips a little every time you roll the throttle from off to on" is right on the money with the experiences I've had and seen. Your comment about the Revloc not causing the plates to turn blue when riding all day with a new rider has my attention and I may give the Revloc another look later on this year.

Have you had any issues when shifting up or down at higher engine RPM's?

Have you done much d/s riding with the Revloc? Is shifting smooth, notchy, harsh, etc, on the street througout the RPM range?

  • Chas_M

Posted April 13, 2006 - 09:54 PM

#17

Shifting has never been an issue on either of my two RevLoc equipped big bore KTM's, even though I replaced the manual clutches with LHRB setups. I just make sure to back off the throttle a tad when shifting. Auto clutch operation has remained consistent and smooth for over 13,000 miles.....including dual sport type riding. The fellow to whom I sold my '02 520 EXC has to date also experienced two more years of excellent service and performance from the RevLoc clutch, and he rides even more aggressively than I do. When I sold the bike to him, my main 'words of wisdom' were to refrain from speedshifting.

  • woodsryder

Posted April 14, 2006 - 07:07 AM

#18

Gadsan,.. The Revloc has the same reluctance to disengagement at high RPM's. Once those balls swing out, you aren't going to push them back in with the clutch lever. I never even noticed this on the CRF because of the riding I did that needed only an occasional shift. Also the lighter flywheel let the revs drop instantly when you shut off between shifts so the clutch disengaged easier with the lever. I think a Revloc on the 650 will have the same harsh shifting isues on the street?

I really felt like I was abusing the trans riding the 650 on the street. Especially the shift into second,.. the clutch lever would not work at all at high revs, and the big load on the gear dogs wouldn't let it shift without interupting power in some way first.

The high gear low RPM slippage thing doesn't seem to exist with the Revloc. When you roll on under those conditions it pretty much grabs right away and stays locked up where the Rekluse slips just a bit on every roll on. I also suspect the strong power pulses of the 650 cause the Rekluse to slip on each stroke when lugging it in high gear? The difference is in how soon and how hard the two clutches lock up.

I got an early Revloc for my CRF and had numerous warranty issues. They took care of it but it took 6 months and they charged me $25.00 shipping everytime it went back. They wouldn't waive the shipping even though it was warranty and I waited half a year so I'll never buy from them again even though I love the product. The Rekluse is 1/3rd the price but has flawless support so its the better choice for most people. The 650's big low RPM torque might be too much for it though??

What we need is a lower priced Revloc with a cast or forged basket intead of the pricey billet one. They both advertise that they're perfect for all types of riding but I totally disagree. People either love them or hate them based on their specific riding styles and conditions.

If the manual override really worked like a normal clutch then there would no reason not to have one for everything. If that problem can be solved I suspect we will see them OEM from Honda or KTM??

  • Old_Man_Time

Posted April 14, 2006 - 08:23 AM

#19

This is some good information guys. I knew it wasn't my imagination that the Rekluse was wearing my XR650R clutches out sooner. The last time it wore a brand new clutch stack out in 5 months and now I know its because at high speed desert riding when I am trying to conserve on fuel be riding in 5th gear with lower rpm that it is indeed slipping. My steel plates had gone past blue to black which I assume is a burned on coat of oil.

I called RevLoc and they said if I order their product for two of my bikes they will give me a $75.00 beak on each clutch. Still pricey but sounding better all the time if I get a product that can handle my riding style. With the Revloc you have to be totally committed always using an auto-clutch cause there is no going back to stock. They want your stock parts or you end up paying an extra $300.00.

We are looking at $850.00 per clutch if I order two of their clutches or $925.00 if I order one.

I am considering putting an auto-clutch in either my KX500 or my KDX220. Rekluse does not make one for the 220 or I would go that route since I doubt the 220 has the torque to eat clutches. But EFM does make one for the 220 and it is only $500.00. Has anyone heard anything good or bad about EFM auto-clutches?

Ive pretty much settled on a Revloc for the 650. I can't get my 650 dual sported so that is not an issue. Mostly desert and some tight technical trails from time to time. I would have a problem selling my Rekluse to anyone other than a trail rider. My conscience would not allow it. So I may have to trash can it if it will not fit any other bike.

  • woodsryder

Posted April 14, 2006 - 09:21 AM

#20

I can't find any good feedback on the EMF clutches. I thought I heard that they are like a Revloc in concept but don't use the expensive billet basket. They may weld up the stock basket fingers and tap the ends to attach the pressure plate. Way back when I called, they wanted me to send in the 650 clutch like it was going to be the first prototype and I didn't feel like being an unpaid test rider.

I would also like to find out more about the EFM?? What we need is a good Revloc clone at a realistic price. I had hoped that Revloc would get their volume up and the price would come down with high volume manufacturing, but I think they may be greedy? They claim to hold patents on everything but autoclutches have been around forever.





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