Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: South Carolina, USA
If the clutch is engaged, lever out, even in neutral a few elements of the transmission will be turning. If things were gunked up quite a bit, that could make a small difference. With the clutch disengaged, lever pulled in, that little bit of drag isn’t there.
Honestly, unless there is a huge gunk buildup from a fair bit of neglect, this alone would never be a problem.
Also, to the OP, does the starter turn the engine over just as easily/quickly in both conditions (clutch in or out)? If so, it’s probably not the starter or it’s connections either.
I’m not able to do any real digging for answers now, but Here are more thoughts.
On this bike, we can start it in any gear so long as the clutch lever is pulled in, right? If my memory is functioning and that is the case, to check the clutch interlock switch, you could just try to start in another gear (if you do this with the clutch lever pulled out, make sure you’re squeezing the brake lever! If things are working right, nothing should happen, but you never know). It’s probably fine, though.
If the engine turns over at the same speed in neutral with the clutch lever out as it does with it pulled in, then maybe there’s a spark issue. I don’t know how the clutch interlock is wired or whether it’s wiring goes anywhere near anything like, say, the kill switch wiring or any other wiring relating to spark. Maybe something is pinched. Or there’s another bad ground connection somewhere.
I’m just thinking out loud while doing other things. Sorry for my fairly useless input. I expect one of the super serious wrenches on here will chime in soon with an “it’s this, easy peasy” and you’ll be all set, lol.
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