View Full Version : Wet vs Dry clutches?

06-24-2005, 07:54 PM
Is there anyway to tell the differance by looking at them? I`ve noticed that some bikes I`ve worked on that had Wet clutch systems, the clutch plates had like lines through the plates/pads, where as my clutches, in my system that has always been dry (well kinda) are smooth cluthes. also, other than posibley slipping, would it ruin the clutches? see whats going on, is I`m going back to having oil in my primary, and wondering whats going to happen to my clutches. I`ve never replaced my clutches since I`ve owned the bike, and when I got it, it had a 1/12 inch primo belt system installed. and believe it or not, The clutches are still in GREAT shape over ten years later, so I dont want to destroy them, but I`m very tight on money, and thinking about trying them with oil in my primary. Thanks in advance for any and all suggestions/warnings. and I do have another question, I`m not going to be cycling this oil. its going to be like other bikes that take seperate oil. But I have no idea how much oil to put in it. see its a 82 fxrs, rubber mount, so it has a shorter primary than most, and obviously it dont have the fill it till it comes out this screw. So I`m trying to geuss how much oil it will take, to reach the chain, and keep it oiled. Thanks. bikerinthenight

06-25-2005, 05:10 AM
Most clutches can be run wet or dry, the wet is just to keep the primary chain oiled. If you run a open belt then you cant use a wet clutch.

I use kevlar clutches only in stock packs, they are about $3 more & work much better, they can be run wet or dry.

Hope this helps :D

06-25-2005, 06:40 AM
Thanks wide. I just did`nt know what to think. I had a couple people tell me that my clutches probley would`nt work (slip) after they get oil on them, now that I`m going to be going to a chain, and a wet primary. my clutches have never seen oil, or atleast not since I`ve owned it. anyway, I`ll see what happens. thanks again wide

06-27-2005, 05:15 AM
eye ball it , you only need oil to cover the lower part of the chain , i would think around 20 oz would do it but best gesed amate will work

06-27-2005, 07:06 PM
Thanks wreckerman, Sounds good to me. bikerinthenight

06-29-2005, 06:28 AM
wet clutches will live longer, but dry clutches will take more abuse.....

the friction material used in a wet clutch is different than a dry clutch. this is exemplified by older pans/shovels experiencing clutch slippage when the chain oiler/scavenger setup is misadjusted.

unless you are running an open belt, most street bikes do well with a wet clutch setup. the oil in the chaincase keeps the unit cooled and it should last you quite a while under normal riding habits...


07-01-2005, 10:13 AM
Well to my amasement, it only took maybe a half a quart before it was up to the baseket. I dont think it is actually touching the chain, but its sure oiling the crap out of it. I think it must be because of the starter ring gear is running so deep in it, and thats whats throwing the oil every where, that and along with the oil just touching the bottom of the baseket is also probley helping it fly around. I know its definantly oiling the chain, because i took it around the block, and then took the primary chain adjuster cover off, and the chain was soaked, and dripping with oil.
anyway, I have`nt rode very far yet, but my clutches have`nt slipped or acted funny yet. if all goes well, I should know whats up by the end of this weekend :D Thanks again guys!!!

07-01-2005, 08:12 PM

The set up you are running is called a wet dry set up. Does not require very much oil at all. Just be sure the oil only touchs the lip of the basket. If oil gets on the plates they will slip.

Sounds like you have it covered.