How does this thing work?

Discussion in 'General Harley Davidson Topic' started by markfsanderson, Mar 15, 2012.

  1. markfsanderson

    markfsanderson Active Member

    At the risk of some good natured ribbing :D, I have a rather simple question to ask:
    How do you shift from first to neutral?

    My 2011 FXDC is new, with less than 200 miles. I have the original lubricants and get the expected clunk upon downshifting which I hope will quiet down when I put some new grease/fluids @ the 1K mark (or earlier maybe?). What I am having trouble with is that it is a very gentle operation to move it to neutral - I will almost always bump it into 2nd. I have no problem going from 2nd to neutral while I'm moving . . . but once I've stopped is another matter. Is this expected behavior for new bike? Will breaking in the bike or better transmission grease/fluid help out?:newsmile105:

    Thanks for your help!


    PS: I wasn't sure that this was a Dyna specific question - so I put it here . . .
  2. HDDon

    HDDon Experienced Member Contributor Retired Moderators


    NEWHD74FAN Experienced Member Retired Moderators

    After you have changed fluids with your "normal" fluids, make sure you do not overfill. Do you use heel and toe shift does take a "deft" touch, but with the bike moving slightly if you are in either 2nd or 1st the shift to neutral is easier with a nudge, but it comes with practice. Of course all the fundamentals must be in order too...pedals high enough to clear obstructions, yet not too high that you have to lift your make sure your controls are fitted and adjusted properly...just for starters.
  4. r_ham

    r_ham Member

    YEP it just takes a gentle lift on the toe shifter. practice practice practice!
    1 person likes this.
  5. markfsanderson

    markfsanderson Active Member

    Just a little bit of foot movement and it just immediately shifts to 2nd from 1st or vice versa if it is completely at a stop. I believe the bike fits me pretty well, I have the stock shifter I believe . . . .

    Thanks - Mark!

    I'm going to give this one a try . . . I don't have any 5th gear noise that I can recall . . . the only noise that I can remember is just the downshift 'clunk' . . .

    Mark - Thanks!
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 16, 2012
  6. dbmg

    dbmg Guest

    Great advice, and I will add that with age it will get better, and changing the fluids at 1000 miles will also help.
  7. FerrousBueller

    FerrousBueller Junior Member

    I've tried almost everything posted here, I still get the "Clunk" you describe when downshifting. I've come to the conclusion it is intentional, to serve as a reminder that you are riding a Harley and not an import.

    I'm trying my third brand of Transmission Fluid, so far I like the Spectrol brand best. Finding neutral now requires a little more "Finesse". It's a little lighter touch, more of a tickle, to go from 1st to Neutral.

    Will you be doing your next service yourself? I've also found after each dealer service it's a little different. I did my own service at 10K including clutch adjustment. Now it's at it's worst. I plan to do another clutch adjustment in the next few days to see if it can be improved on.

    ( Insert Good Natured Ribbing Here )

    1 person likes this.
  8. fin_676

    fin_676 Experienced Member Staff Member Moderator Contributor

    I always change to N from 1st if i am having trouble finding N then i raise the revs to about 1500 to 2000 and usually it will get there but if it does not then raise the revs a wee bit let the clutch out till it just starts to bite then flick the gear leaver and it will change to N
    the only bike that is a wee bit difficult on getting N is the 94 dyna but the techniques i use have worked for me on many different brands of motorcycle over many years

    1 person likes this.
  9. JTs Dad

    JTs Dad Member

    I had the same problem with my bike...But after the dealer changed all the fluids after the 1K, it dropped in nicely...No problems since...I believe you will probably find the same thing, just get past the first break in period and all should be good...
    1 person likes this.
  10. Breeze3at

    Breeze3at Well-Known Member

    Fin's advice in post #9 is very good info. It takes practice, and each bike can be a little different. Start by getting into neutral before the bike comes to a complete stop.
    If you have watched many episodes of American Chopper, Paul Sr. can NOT get a bike into neutral with his foot. He uses his right hand!!
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2012