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Classic, Vintage & Veteran For Coventry and Meriden Models. Anything pre-Hinckley goes.

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Old 11-20-2012, 06:44 PM   #1 (permalink)
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'79 T140E 1st gear Grinding, Clanging, banging

OK, Three days ago I traded for a 1979 T140E, Runs great looks awesome, but clutch sticking horribly. Tried all the stuff from the Forum but the only thing that worked was, forcing it into 1st and riding it for about five minutes and pulling the clutch handle often, eventually the clutch would release. Now today I jumped on tried to free the clutch to no avail then forced it into first and BAM! Cling, Clang, thwock, buucka, buucka, BAM!
Now when idleing in neutral it makes pings and clangs 10-15 times a minute. But in 1st and only in first,it makes the most horrible noises like someone beating on the primary with a hammer, 40 - 70 times a minute. I assume there is a broken gear or spindle. I can turn a wrench and have rebuilt a couple of VW beetles, but I have never worked on a Brit bike. Is rebuilding the tranny something I can do and what parts am I definatley going to need such as gaskets and seals etc. Or should I trust it to someone with more experience?
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Old 11-20-2012, 07:22 PM   #2 (permalink)
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You will need to open up the primary chaincase that houses the clutch components first to see what went wrong.

There are special tools involved to dig further into it.

Best bet would be to bring it to someone you trust, but also to look over his shoulder (if possible)to learn what it's all about.

The first special tool might be a Posidriv screwdriver to get the cover off!
The screw heads look like regular phillips but aren't.
Then again, your bike may have had these changed out.

Do as much research on Triumph clutch as possible.

Take some pic's and lets see what you have?

If your serious , get a factory repair manual.

Good luck!
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Old 11-20-2012, 10:02 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by gunternomad View Post
OK, Three days ago I traded for a 1979 T140E, Runs great looks awesome, but clutch sticking horribly. Tried all the stuff from the Forum but the only thing that worked was, forcing it into 1st and riding it for about five minutes and pulling the clutch handle often, eventually the clutch would release. Now today I jumped on tried to free the clutch to no avail then forced it into first and BAM! Cling, Clang, thwock, buucka, buucka, BAM!
Now when idleing in neutral it makes pings and clangs 10-15 times a minute. But in 1st and only in first,it makes the most horrible noises like someone beating on the primary with a hammer, 40 - 70 times a minute. I assume there is a broken gear or spindle. I can turn a wrench and have rebuilt a couple of VW beetles, but I have never worked on a Brit bike. Is rebuilding the tranny something I can do and what parts am I definatley going to need such as gaskets and seals etc. Or should I trust it to someone with more experience?
When you start your bike from cold, don't force it into first gear. Start it in neutral and then pull the clutch lever still in neutral and rev the engine two or three times or more; then engage it in first gear. Usually this would free the clutch if it is not too contaminated. If this does'nt work, like it has been said, you will have to inspect the clutch. Even if you don't do it yourself, a workshop manual for your model is essential.
Good luck and let us know how it goes!
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Old 11-21-2012, 02:36 PM   #4 (permalink)
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There will be broken gears in the gearbox.
Most likely the output sleeve gear or the layshaft gear that engages it.
If you're lucky it will be mainshaft or layshaft 1st gear;easier to get to.

If the bike was moving at even 4 mph,you could safely engage 1st gear with the engine idling even if the clutch wouldn't disengage.You can't do it when the bike is stopped,without risking damage.
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Old 11-21-2012, 02:49 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Mr.Pete View Post
There will be broken gears in the gearbox.
Most likely the output sleeve gear or the layshaft gear that engages it.
If you're lucky it will be mainshaft or layshaft 1st gear;easier to get to.

If the bike was moving at even 4 mph,you could safely engage 1st gear with the engine idling even if the clutch wouldn't disengage.You can't do it when the bike is stopped,without risking damage.
That should put a smile on the owners face Pete !
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Old 11-21-2012, 06:01 PM   #6 (permalink)
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OK, I pulled the clutch and found nothing but sticky clutch plates, nothing broken, but I could not remove the clutch shock absorber cover due to stuck screws and couldn't remove the clutch flywheel thing, due to not having any type of puller. I will soak the clutch plates overnight in the only solvent I have (Gasoline).

here is the special tool I made for this job
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'79 T140E 1st gear Grinding, Clanging, banging-8206281051_0b253574ed_m.jpg  
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Old 11-21-2012, 06:07 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Removing the Pressure plate screws and springs.


Pressure plate removed.


Nasty, sticky, clutch plates.

This is as far as I can go due to these little silver screws that hold the Clutch shock absorber plate being stuck and not having a puller.
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Old 11-21-2012, 06:29 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Don't know if its just me but none of those photos show up - just a "This photo is currently unavailable" message.

Not sure what the screws are - sounds like they're the screws that hold the cover plate over the shock absorber rubbers? If so, you don't need to touch these. What you do need is the correct puller to pull the whole clutch off the shaft. These are about £7 in UK so should be maybe $10 or $12 in USA, and I guess any decent British bike spares shop should have one. Other than that, you might need a puller to remove the crankshaft sprocket, if its tight (they sometimes pull off by hand, others need a puller).

If you need to dismantle the gearbox, that's easy once the clutch is off - no more special tools needed. Most difficult bit is getting a spanner onto the right-hand footrest nut - don't unscrew the bolt from the nut completely, just enough to enable you to swing the footrest downwards out of the way. If you detach the nut it is a pig to hold in place while you get the bolt thread started in it again. Another tip - don't take the kickstart off its shaft - it is much easier to leave it on - you need to move the shaft backwards a tad to remove and replace the cover (very difficult without the lever attached), plus it gives a good handle to pull the cover off with, combined with the pointed part of the outer cover at the front. Hope this helps. Let us know how you get on...
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Old 11-21-2012, 07:02 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Do these pics work?
Attached Thumbnails
'79 T140E 1st gear Grinding, Clanging, banging-pressure-plate-screws.jpg   '79 T140E 1st gear Grinding, Clanging, banging-no-pressure-plate.jpg   '79 T140E 1st gear Grinding, Clanging, banging-nasty-clutch-plates.jpg   '79 T140E 1st gear Grinding, Clanging, banging-far-as-we-can-go.jpg  
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Old 11-21-2012, 07:26 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Like John says,you can leave those countersunk screws alone.
Undo the mainshaft nut.
Fit the pushrod back,fit the pressure plate with 1/2" washers under the nuts instead of springs,and pull the clutch lever.

After the cush-drive comes off (in one piece),you need a clutch hub puller.You will need to screw it into the hub,tighten the bolt reasonably firmly,then hit the bolt with a hammer.
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