Clutch System

The clutch system on the early GS is a weak point for at least some owners. The clutch can be prone to slippage.

The later GS/M dual spark machines and the G650 have a revised clutch plate system.

The difference between the models is in the number of clutch plates. All other parts are common between the F models. The part numbers for the G series are different so whether there are further changes in the clutch is unknown. More information on the G Series would be interesting to see if there are other changes.

The GS/M has a lower number of thicker clutch plates and increased tension. Details are below:

F650GS 00-03 - Inner Plates 8 x 1.50 mm and Friction Plates 8 x 3.50 mm - Total height 40.00 mm
F650GS 04-05 - Inner Plates 7 x 2.13 mm and Friction Plates 7 x 3.50 mm - Total height 39.38 mm

The wear limit for the early GS is 1mm reduction in total plate height (39 mm) so tolerances are tight.

It is thought the later model clutch plates could be used in the 00-03 GS but it is untested.

The differences in the clutch would explain the difference in engine oil recommendations for the two models. The early GS is semi synthetic oil only where the GS/M is for semi synthetic or synthetic oil.

A pdf comparing the part numbers for the three models is opposite.
The G650 part numbers are different and the 7th steel plate has been replaced with a "Judder spring/support disk" It is not known if there are any other changes at the moment.

Sticky Clutch or Neutral Selection

A combination of poor tolerances can result in poor clutch disengagement

The symptoms are:

The bike creeps when first gear is engaged with the clutch lever pulled in

Neutral is hard to find when the motorcycle is stationary.

The G Series has an updated clutch release head and washer set to overcome the problem and the later F650GS models produced were fitted with the updated mechanism. It was also retrofitted if F650GS owners complained under warranty. It is not known if the parts fit the single spark model. A pdf with the details       Sticky Clutch Fix

G650X and G650GS Clutch Cover

There are at least some G650GS which dont have a steel bushing in the clutch cover which causes problems in clutch release and first gear selection. 2007-08 G650X are also affected. See the pdf for details. The links page has a link to the original G650X write up on the problem.       G650GS Clutch Release

Gearbox Clutch Arm Seal

The seal on the lever can leak - The seal dimensions are 12x18x4.5 mm

The correct procedure is to remove the clutch cover and push the seal out from the inside. Some owners have had success in removing the lever and the seal without cover removal.

Clutch Arm Position

When the clutch actuator arm is not positioned correctly the clutch cannot be adjusted. On the left is a 2012 model with the arm one notch too far anti clockwise. On the right the arm is correctly positioned.

Clutch Cable Replacement

The clutch cable is different on 2010+ models. Early Part No is 32737661757, 2010+ Part No is 32737728597

A pdf of what is known about the cable differences including the G650X and Husky Terra       Download pdf

Clutch Plate Replacement

Clutch plate replacement is relatively straight forward but complicated by the combined clutch/water pump cover which requires draining the coolant as well as the engine oil. The rigid oil line is another complication.

Refer to the manuals for details on plate replacement. One day when time permits I will add a pdf here.

See the water pump repair page for information on flexible oil line options.

EBC Clutch Plates

EBC supply clutch plate sets for the 650GS

The EBC final plate does not fit offset as per the BMW final plate. has some discussion on the subject.

The last EBC disk can be fitted without using the offset tab.

Or the tab on the last EBC plate can be ground to 13mm to fit the offset.

Rekluse Clutch

An alternative to the standard clutch is the Rekluse

The drawback is lack of engine braking. has some discussion on the subject.

Information is in the pdf here      Download pdf