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Old 03-27-2015, 07:20 AM   #1
motobene OP
Motoing for 44 years
 
Joined: Mar 2013
Location: Wichita Mountains SW Oklahoma
Oddometer: 1,689
2 Stroke HRC Montesa 315R Clutch Mod

I had a student yesterday at the ranch for an all-day course. The first part of the course is bike setup and tweaks because often students come in with baggage from the dust-and-mayhem fast-bike world, or other bike setup issues.

The bike, a 2000 HRC Montesa 315R, was in pretty good shape for ~14 years old. It was obviously owned by a trials rider previously because the setup was pretty good. No bars-back, levers-down type silliness.

This was my first direct experience with a 2-stroke 315R. I've heard them in videos sounding quite smooth. Definitely true!

The biggest flaw that impeded a pleasurable experience was hyper-clutch. Lots of lever travel then BOOM! The clutch would hit way too fast. The lever was adjusted all the way out. I fixed that error, but still the engagement was way fast. It dawned on me this was an HRC clutch, and it felt very similar to a 2005 4RT clutch. The 2-springs mod thus came to mind as a major fix, as not 2 weeks before I had listened to a voice mail from a rider in Houston with a 4RT. I told him in January at an event about the 2-springs mod when I was checking a section he came through and I saw him struggling to control the clutch in a tight spot. He got around to the mod and it worked magically, so he called me to thank me.

The 315R owner had the parts manual, so we looked up the clutch and sure enough... six springs! So out came 2 of the 6 springs and the clutch went from hyper to quite good. No more fast, lurching engagement and, we confirmed, no issues with slip.

The mod on the 2-stroke models is easier than on the 4 stroke 4RT. The slave cylinder is not on the cover and the springs can be removed individually from the outside. The only thing that stood in the way was the brake lever and its one screw. Ours was dry and very stuck, but after PB Blaster and impacts we got it out, leaving the four cover screws. Had the lever been maintained and not assembled dry it would have been a true 5-mimute mod, just lay the bike over on the side.

Here is the bike, cover removed, and two springs on opposite sides taken out:



The other flaw, almost not no front brake, was fixed by tossing some awful, cheap black pads for a with a fresh set of Galfer red pads and then 4X water quench seasoning. I could then stop the bike, doing front wheelies with about 30% more lever force than with modern brakes. The clutch became easy, after the mod, to accurately control. The bike was then quite fun to ride, and I started to appreciate the heavy-flywheel, really-smooth 2-stroke HRC engine.

The bikes heavy weight exacerbated by too-slow suspension were still there, but I came away with the opinion that with some suspension mods, I'd really enjoy riding this bike.

motobene screwed with this post 03-27-2015 at 07:39 AM
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Old 03-27-2015, 07:31 AM   #2
Brewtus
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Very nice.

I've been a fan of these for years.
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Old 03-27-2015, 07:41 AM   #3
motobene OP
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Great bike. I just edited the OP better. This would be a great bike in the slick stuff. Lots of rear wheel weighting before body input.
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Old 03-27-2015, 08:47 AM   #4
Gordy
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Chris,

I had one of those and the clutch was miserable even to someone who didn't know the difference at the time.

I bought a Jitsie clutch pack and it really made a huge difference.
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Old 03-27-2015, 11:22 AM   #5
Brewtus
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Chris,

I had one of those and the clutch was miserable even to someone who didn't know the difference at the time.

I bought a Jitsie clutch pack and it really made a huge difference.
I wanted one of those for Miss Bitter's 315R last year, only to find that Jitsie had stopped making them. I installed a Sureflex clutch that I got from Dennis at Overland, and it's been a happy clutching experience ever since!
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Old 03-27-2015, 11:42 AM   #6
laser17
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The Jitsie clutch plates are made by Surflex, but they no longer carry them for Montesa'. Must not have been a big seller if Surflex still makes them? They still sell them for lots of other older bikes. Kinda weird given they work well.

Most of the Jitsie/Surflex plates tend to yield a soft/progressive engagement (Used in the Beta SS for instance) except the RACE style- that are closer to OEM performance if not a tad quicker(experts only IMO).
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Old 03-28-2015, 08:00 AM   #7
motobene OP
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Originally Posted by laser17 View Post
The Jitsie clutch plates are made by Surflex, but they no longer carry them for Montesa'. Must not have been a big seller if Surflex still makes them? They still sell them for lots of other older bikes. Kinda weird given they work well.

Most of the Jitsie/Surflex plates tend to yield a soft/progressive engagement (Used in the Beta SS for instance) except the RACE style- that are closer to OEM performance if not a tad quicker(experts only IMO).
What plates are available is relevant, and a person can seek them out to pay money. But tossing two springs will give excellent results. Who knows? Possibly better. Sure makes the pull easier too.

It dawned on me yesterday our new Beta 80 has the same type of clutch problem, and the parts list shows it has 6 springs!!

motobene screwed with this post 03-30-2015 at 06:13 AM
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Old 03-28-2015, 08:35 PM   #8
laser17
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I pulled 2 springs from my 2002 280 GG edition and it worked well. Never a problem with slip or plate warp.

Certainly a good mod to try on a 6 spring bike.
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Old 03-30-2015, 06:13 AM   #9
motobene OP
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Yesterday a rider came through my section on a shiny new 4RT. It was pretty warm day, so oils were running on the thin side. As he pulled up to get his card punched by me, he let his clutch out. The bike lurched forward then there were two added finger pulses and two smaller lurches as his brain's control system tried to keep up with hyper-clutch.

I mentioned as I punched his card about the clutch being fast, and he started into "I did this and that"... and I offered he could fix it simply by removing two of the 6 springs. The helmeted head swiveled so the eyes could look into mine for that classic look (with the scoopydoo consternation noise). I said, "Trust me, just do it. It works."

The probability of him doing it is about 1 in 6, but I do have fun suggesting the mod and getting the look
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Old 03-30-2015, 10:52 AM   #10
jonnyc21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by motobene View Post
...

The probability of him doing it is about 1 in 6, but I do have fun suggesting the mod and getting the look


I haven't had the chance to get "that look" but it sounds entertaining.
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Old 03-30-2015, 02:18 PM   #11
Brewtus
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Originally Posted by motobene View Post
....but I do have fun suggesting the mod and getting the look

Yeah, I get "that look" when I suggest mods also. Usually for different reasons though.....
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Old 03-31-2015, 11:44 PM   #12
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This is great info for whenever I manage to get time to finish my 315R restoration, currently hanging in the rafters of my shed.
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Old 04-01-2015, 08:16 AM   #13
motobene OP
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You all know me well enough by now that you know I've gotten 'that look' a number of times in my life.

I lack social propriety in solutions sometime, having a philosophy of stark pragmatism with zero regard for ego, mine or theirs. This is also known as 'bumbling nerd engineer syndrome.'
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Old 05-16-2015, 06:31 AM   #14
sisuman
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Thanks for this tip. I did the two spring mod to my 2002 315R. The brake lever wasn't stuck, so it only took a few minutes to complete. The clutch action is much more progressive with reduced effort.

John
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Old 05-18-2015, 07:28 AM   #15
motobene OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sisuman View Post
Thanks for this tip. I did the two spring mod to my 2002 315R. The brake lever wasn't stuck, so it only took a few minutes to complete. The clutch action is much more progressive with reduced effort.

John
Courage to do it rewarded. Awesome!
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