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WrightCo

Starter clutch removal?

11 posts in this topic

Greetings everyone.

I began my starter upgrade on my '03 WR450 last night and discovered that my starter clutch (behind the rotor) has partially failed. It will engage part of the time, which explains why my starter sounded like a blender at the end of last season. I need to remove the "rotor" (looks like a flywheel to me) to replace the drive gear. The manual says I need a "special Yamaha tool" to do that. Has anyone removed the rotor without the "special tool"? Please advise asap. My first ride of the season is this Saturday.

Thanks,

Wrightco

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Greetings everyone.

I began my starter upgrade on my '03 WR450 last night and discovered that my starter clutch (behind the rotor) has partially failed. It will engage part of the time, which explains why my starter sounded like a blender at the end of last season. I need to remove the "rotor" (looks like a flywheel to me) to replace the drive gear. The manual says I need a "special Yamaha tool" to do that. Has anyone removed the rotor without the "special tool"? Please advise asap. My first ride of the season is this Saturday.

Thanks,

Wrightco

The "Special Tool" they're talking about is a simple flywheel puller designed for the WR. I picked mine up at the local bike shop for $15.

We had to replace the starter clutch on my bro-in-law's 03 too and when we took it out it fell apart! Nice thing for you though is that it's easy to replace. :naughty: If your bike has had the Yamaha TSB performed on it (rotor lapped and loctited) then you may want to use some heat on the rotor and keep the nut on the crank to keep the flywheel puller from mushrooming the end of the crank.

FAILED Starter Clutch

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Hello WrightCo,

Any luck removing the rotor/flywheel? I have an '03 WR450 and I believe my starter clutch has failed. I'm in the process of trying to remove the rotor without much luck. The first time I tried, I pulled the flywheel tool right off the threads of the crank. Luckily, somehow I didn't ruin the threads of the crank. I'm now making a second attempt at removing the flywheel without much luck. Tonight, I'm going to apply some heat and see if that works. I also like the idea of leaving the nut on the crank to prevent mushrooming the end. Hopefully, that hasn't happened yet, because I've managed to put a fair amount of torque on it already.

If you or anyone else can offer any tips to make the removal of the rotor easier, please post them.

P.S. Another question I have is whether the '04 upgrade is worth the money or should I just deal with replacing the starter clutch every year or so?

Thanks,

Joe

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Hey guys,

While your in there replace the starter stop on the case. Mine failed cause its a poorly designed piece of crap!!! Found someone to weld up the mount on the case and pull the broken bolt. This is not something you want to deal with so spend a few bucks and replace it.

Dave

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I just replaced my starter clutch last week. I used a regular 3 claw puller such as this one ProductDetail.aspx?categorycode=3497&mfrcode=APO&mfrpartnumber=T74193 which can be found at your local auto parts store. Once the flywheel is removed the job is very simple. Remove the 6 hex bolts from the inside of the flyywheel and detach the starter clutch holding plate. Next, remove the one way clutch and then re-assamble in the opposite order. Be sure to de-grease all the parts which will require loctite , particularly the crank and flywheel mating surfaces. I used red loctite to re-assamble mine so that there would be less chance of the flywheel letting loose on the crank in the event the bike back fires. Let the loctite dry for 24 hours before filling bike back up with oil and starting.

JD

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If you don't use heat to break the loctite bond I don't think it will come off. I had to heat mine up several times before it gave way. Keep the nut on the shaft just in case, I even used a washer to cover the end of the crank. The loctite Yamaha used is a permenant mount compound. Some shops used lighter duty removable types when they did the mod,which makes some flywheels easier to get off. When I fixed this on my bike I thought kick starts never cost me money, but thats as far as it went.

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Well, bad news from my end. Today I went to NAPA and bought a gear puller rated at 5 tons (overkill I know, but I wanted to get the rotor removed today) and it was all they had. So, I came back and me and my friend applied lots of heat to the shaft and then proceeded to attempt removing the rotor first with an air tool and then by hand. Unfortunately, the rotor actually began to bend like taking a donut and folding it in half. Of course we stopped long before that happened, but you can tell by the naked eye that the rotor is out of round.

Needless to say, I have no idea what could be keeping me from removing the rotor. The directions are easy enough, Remove nut, Remove rotor. I'm at a loss.

Could it be that the woodruff key could be bent but not sheared off causing the rotor to bind? I don't have any idea what else could be going wrong. As much as I hate to do it, I think I have to take my bike to the local shop and see if they can remove the rotor.

Any thoughts/suggestions?

Thanks,

Joe :D

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I used a 3 position gear puller when I removed my rotor. The rotor did bend slightly before it "pop" off of the shaft.

My suggestions: 1) Remove the woodruff key before you start. 2) Heat the rotor up and let it cool down. Do this a couple of times. The expanding and contracting of the metal will help to loosen up the loctite. 3) Install the gear puller and put just enough pressure on it so that you know it will "pop" off once the loctite breaks loose. It's a tapered shaft, so once the loctite lets go, the rotor almost falls off. 4) With the gear puller installed, heat the rotor up and cooler down some more.

Be patient. It will come off eventually. Also, if you do upgrade to the 04 parts, then you don't need to loctite the rotor on as permantly. You could use a weaker loctite.

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Good suggestions. My friend and I were trying to remove the rotor while it was still hot, so maybe that was our problem.

Just for clarification, unless I'm reading the manual wrong, I thought you couldn't get to the woodruff key until you removed the rotor. Also you say to heat the rotor, do you mean use direct heat on the rotor? We were heating the shaft and not the rotor itself. Of course the heat transferred to the rotor, but still we did not directly put a flame on the rotor. We just used a propane torch, also. I assume that is what you used.

Thanks for responding. My friend and I are perplexed at this point.

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I was going by memory on the woodruff key. Do as the manual states.

I heated the hub of the rotor when I removed mine.

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I heated the rotor and let it cool 3 times before the loctite bond broke with the puller in place. As I have said before this loctite they have used is very strong and is not meant to come off easy. I used a breaker bar as the air wrench was too hard on the crankshaft. I also used the Yamaha puller tool.

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