Clutch problems - please help!


Local time
8:19 PM
Mar 20, 2008
The fact that I still know so little about motorized bicycling will become very apperant when you read this:

I am trying to thread my chain through so that I can fit the chain. But even with the clutch plate on (and even with the clutch activated I guess...), the engine will only turn an eigth of an inch and stop. It won't turn any more. I know I must be making a newbie mistake. I even reinstalled the clutch plate with the arm on it and put the thing into the activated position like all the faqs and .pdf files tell you to do. But the motor is still locked up. It's a factory test-fired motor with all the tale-tell signs it works correctly.

So what am I doing wrong? What is the trick to getting the clutch to activate so that the chain sprocket on the engine turns freely?

I know I must be making a novice, newbie mistake and I appreciate your help!

Last edited by a moderator:
If I read this correctly, you want to pull in the clutch lever on the handlebars and be able to roll or ride and pedal the bike, like a normal bike.
So, if you grab the clutch arm by hand, and push it inward tward the center of the bike, you still cant roll or disingadge the clutch/sprocket? correct?

Then we can go on from here....
Well, actually, I have a piece missing from the wire that connects to the clutch arm (it's in the mail!). So I haven't been able to use the hand grip yet.

I still should be able to make the clutch rotate freely without the handle thing connected, right?
Bend over and grab the clutch rod and push it in by hand inward tward the center of the bike. When it is pushed inward (it will push very stiff and hard) it will put the clutch in neutral. And then you should be able to spin the small gear. Or be able to push the bike, if the chain was on.___see photo
When I re-read what i wrote, and the way this is written, sounds kind of "kinky" Hehe


  • clutch.jpg
    58.8 KB · Views: 261
Last edited:
My chain snapped yesterday. Luckily,I keep a length of chain and my chain cutter in my tool pouch. So I switched my gas cap so I can flip her upside down and proceeded to work on my bike. I had some difficulty too with threading the chain so I removed the clutch lever housing exposing the sprocket and with channel locks I GENTLY grabbed the chain at the top of the sprocket to the little shaft in the middle and GENTLY turned it in till the chain went around. I would also imagine of you don't want to use channel locks,you can always just remove your spark plug and it should move a bit better.
Well, my small sprocket will not turn. How is that metal dowl and bearing supposed to act? I tried poking on the rod thinking it was supposed to push inwards but it's just THERE. It doesn't move or give. I can push on it and it doesn't do a thing. It's supposed to do SOMETHING, right? The clutch arm is supposed to press that small rod inwards activating (or deactivating) the clutch, right? What if the ball bearing inside the clutch isn't as far down the clutch mechanism as it should be? I am scared to just put my screw driver in there and jam the bearing back down because nothing may be wrong in the first place.

Could the motor have jostled something loose inside that clutch housing during shipping? From the opposite side, with the big/little wheels, it looks perfectly normal. Just that my engine's not turning.
Well, I took out the spark plug and the engine rotates freely - thankfully! Graucho and Large have been a big help to me. I think I learned my first big lesson today with removing that spark plug. You can really tell I'm still green around the gills!

As for the rod in the clutch mechanism, it still won't give. However, just as soon as I get some shut eye, I will wake up and read up on graucho's link and work on it again.
Last edited:

Hi First before trying below try,,,Take the clutch cast cover of then push the clutch arm across to disengage the clutch then just with a screw driver just knock the pressure plate a bit may be the spring is stuck and not pushing the pressure plate out. You see the clutch arm will push the screw bit in the middle of your pressure plate but it's the spring that actually pushes the plate out. Sometimes the plate might not sit exactly in the middle of the fly wheel.
OR what about try this take you pressure plate off and see if the back wheel can now free wheel. May be the adjustment on the clutch isn't correct
I have written this at 100 miles hr hope it sort of makes sense.