• 1. While the brand specific areas are no doubt great areas to find specific information on your sled and model, these areas usually lack information from members who are very knowledgeably about OTHER sleds, setup, etc. Simply because X-Member who rides a Ski-Doo does not go into the Polaris areas that often and vice versa (When was the last time you Polaris riders went into the Yamaha area? Yamaha riders when was the last time you were in the Cat section?)

    2. I know there will be clutch threads in these brand specific areas and that is fine, but by posting your clutching questions or advice in this clutching area you will be sharing with a much larger audience. So while X-Rider might not ride the same sled as Y-Rider, he might still have some info to share that will help riders of all brands with their setup.

    3. This are will eventually contain everything from how to properly break-in a belt, places that sell clutch parts, a tools section, setups, troubleshooting, rebuild info, spring rates, gearing information, etc, etc.



    Thanks to those who contribute and I hope those that know a lot about clutching jump in and get involved. You know who you are!

    You will also see that there have been other stickies in this area for each major brand. Within these stickies you will find links to other threads and areas that we think have some value. There is troubleshooting, setup, and general help threads in each. Remember to browse the other brands for they will contain tips that can be applied to any brand of clutch.

    Below are a couple of links to two great books that are helpful to those who wish to learn more about clutching. I have read one cover to cover several times and have the other on order.

    Olav Aaen's Clutch Tuning Handbook


    Cutler's Clutch Tuning Handbook

    Currently not available, not sure when it will go back into print


    Also if anyone has anything that needs to be added to this please shoot me a PM!

Clutching theory

Norway

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what about gearing and how it affects clutching?
Just Q mattymac. My performance source, with multiple drag- and sno-x wins to his credit, always complain that customers call, ask for a clutch kit and when he ask if anything has been done to the sled they say; no, just geared it down. His reply is always; "no, I dont have a clutch kit for you if you've geared it down".

RS
 

Norway

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Secondary explained, or...?

After I read Aaens book and saw how the secondary work with the helix, I always thought of it as threads on a bolt. The helix angle compared to a fine/coarse thread.

This way I see the balance as the engine trying to "un-screw" the nut from the bolt (opening) while the resistance from the driveshaft/track being the oposite force trying to screw in the bolt into the nut, ie closing the secondary.

does this make any sense?


RS
 

winter brew

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Lower gearing typically DROPS some RPM....and taller gearing GAINS RPM.
When I am gathering info for a clutch setup, gearing is ALWAYS a factor.....what style rider are they, where do they ride, track lengh and more importantly track weight...engine mods etc...
I am a fan of fairly low gearing for the mountains (but not TOO low) because lower gears will put the belt higher in the primary at any given speed. This gives more belt/sheave contact area which makes for less slippage (less heat) and also gets us closer to a 1:1 ratio...which is where a CVT system is most efficient.
There are other with different theories on clutching/gearing but this has always worked well for me.
 

ruffryder

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I am a fan of fairly low gearing for the mountains (but not TOO low) because lower gears will put the belt higher in the primary at any given speed..
Define "too low" please. Is it possible, like are there actual gear combinations out there to get "too low" ? Just curious what some problems could be.

Thanks. I too am a fan of low gearing. I could care less about trail ride speeds..
 

winter brew

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Too low and things become TOO sensitive. Too low and your belt moves up/down the sheaves more with speed changes....more movement up and down the sheaves means more potential for heat so there is a fine balance in there somewhere....2.00-2.35 seems to be where most mountain guys end up depending on track length, power, riding style etc..
 

shortstop20

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I agree with Winter Brew.

Olav Aaen has some good comments about gearing in his book. He says to shoot for a gear ratio that will put your clutches at a 1:1 ratio where you do the most of your riding. Since the clutches are most efficient at this ratio, it only makes sense to use that ratio as much as possible.

I did this on my Pro-X and it worked quite well.
 

mattymac

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I was just amazed that 3 pages of this stuff and gearing was never spoken about.

I like doing the old sharpie trick in the sheaves to make sure im getting full shift (not to high geared) getting full shift and utilizing 100% of the CVT.
 
Aug 30, 2008
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Belt deflection ?

Side Belt Clearence ?

I can always tell when I jump on a sled if the belt deflection is jacked up. Starting in a higher gear ratio induces bog, poor belt life and throttle response.

Great thread keep her going
 

Norway

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Belt deflection is very important. To much or to little, same result. Your "missing out on gears", so to speak.

To much deflection is caused by 3 things: wrong belt (to long/narrow), C-C distance wrong or incorrect setting/shimming of the secondary.
Ti little is the same, except to wide or to short instead of long/narrow.

To much and your belts creeps way up on your primary before being caught by both sheaves. To little and your belt never reaches the top of your secondary clutch.

It all takes away from both starting and full shift ratio.


RS
 
Nov 28, 2007
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Ramble bamble...blah blah blah. SOMEONE JUST GIVE THE PERFECT SETUP FOR ALL CONDITIONS ALREADY!!! Nah just kiddin! AWsome thread. Personally I like a sled that upshifts like a drag racer myself. They just seems snappier and funner to ride. (of course that also describes why I think Cats are so boring to ride) excluding insanely boosted ones. Not sure if they feel so lazy cuz of the motor design or the clutching.
Love the way my Xp holz clutching upshifts. It's a blast when you wheelie up and your track zings up to 60 mph its almost out of control feeling. But that makes my point. Clutching is so much rider preferance and riding style. My setup can be very sensitive to changing snow conditions b/c it is very upshift oriented but I'm Ok with it b/c I understand it and know what to change to make it work better.

I think Winterbrew said it best so far in my opinion. Gearing for the kind of riding you want to do so as to optimize CVT ratio is key.
It is a fine balance between not enough side pressure on the belt (ie. slippage and heat) and to much belt pressure so the primary is fighting to open the secondary while trying to upshift.
All in all I think clutching is one of the funner parts of sledding. It never gets boring trying to perfect the almost unperfectable.
Great thread.
 

LRD

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The most amazing thing I ever learned about clutching happened by accident back in 05. Was wining to a friend about how doggone much harder sidehilling my new 05 summit 550 fan was compared to the old Phazer mtns. He suggested putting in a high rate primary spring (130/280) HUH? So I buy about five springs 100/260, 100/280, 130/280, 130.320, 160/280 etc. The one that worked amazing was the 130/280 and 100/280 for the wifey. Works for sidehilling because when the front end starts washing out downhill, just a little burp of the throttle gets max R's and breaks the track loose and rear of sled washes out and is level with front end again.

BUT the other thing it does is the High Rate (short spring, fat wire) with lower lbs at engagement allows clutch weights to generate more belt squeeze so the sled will literally tractor along through the powder at 5 to 12 mph without breaking the track loose. This is if you set up with lower engagement
RPM.

Fixes that track everybody was complaining about a few years ago.

The 100/280 on the wifes sled is because she doesn't get stuck anymore and I can ride more. It will tractor along at near 15 mph before it tips over and snaps to shift RPM.

Takes a little experimenting to get the right spring that you like but well worth it. Kind of like having two different clutching setups or ratios in one clutch setup, low and high. The 160/280 on my 385 lb 629 fan mod was nuts, burp throttle at 15 mph and skis were two feet in air, where stock style springs couldn't get front off the snow to save your life or jump a log. One of my complaints on that sled (no weight transfer) turns out to be the primary spring not the rear suspension, sure surprised me. Never ran that spring in the powder as I felt it was to aggressive.

I currently use a high rate on my 380 lb 08 mod mtn TNT and friends use it on 800R's, old mod MXZ big bore triple etc., it just flat works!!!! Makes for a fun to ride sled!!!

These high rate style springs are just the opposite of a lot of doo stock springs over the years, the ones that look like you could put them on a front shock in a pinch cause they are so long!!!

Good Luck

PS Going back to our first trips to the Mtns in late 80's with short track Phazers would have been a whole lot more fun with high rate (lower engagement rpm) primary springs instead of the factory higher engagement rpm springs for high altitude. Wouldn't have been trenching near as much. Factory theory was make up for lower HP at engagement with more R's at engagement mine now is do it with lower gears, max track speed in powder isn't much over 50 mph with anything except turbo's anyhow.
 
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Sep 13, 2002
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Another comment on gearing lower. Not only does it put the belt up higher in primary, it also puts you up further along the helix profile, so if it's a progressive cut, your on a different angle now which will have a similar effect as changing helix and very little bit...possibly at a lower angle depending on the helix profile of course. Also on primary clutch your rollers will be further along the ramp face and also at different angle.
Sounds good to me to be as close to 1:1 as possible when in the hill climbing (for me as a mtn rider). I also like the sounds of running lighter pin weight when gearing down, since this would give even better backshifting....I guess one has to balance the cost of these changes to the benefit as changing top gear is relatively cheap, but bottom gear and chain gets spendy. Most guys i talk to get the most performance gain out of a clutch kit, then the gearing is more tuning/tweaking type of stuff at an extra expense....but some of us just can't leave well enough alone. ;)
 
Sep 13, 2002
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Does anyone know at 50 mph on gearing of 21/49 how close am i to 1:1 shift? stock drivers XP 163. What gearing would get me to 1:1 at 50 mph? I don't care about top speed or lack of speed. In theory that should be the most efficient, correct? But now with my stock gearing on 3 back to back hard long pulls in 3 feet of snow, my clutches are just warm and I can hold them as long as I want comfortably (I use them to warm my hands, i'm such a puss). So why should I regear (other than to experiment)? Doesn't sound like I'm slipping belt regardless if I'm not at 1:1....something to discuss. Would 1:1 be better than what I have?
 

Norway

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Does anyone know at 50 mph on gearing of 21/49 how close am i to 1:1 shift? stock drivers XP 163. What gearing would get me to 1:1 at 50 mph? I don't care about top speed or lack of speed. In theory that should be the most efficient, correct? But now with my stock gearing on 3 back to back hard long pulls in 3 feet of snow, my clutches are just warm and I can hold them as long as I want comfortably (I use them to warm my hands, i'm such a puss). So why should I regear (other than to experiment)? Doesn't sound like I'm slipping belt regardless if I'm not at 1:1....something to discuss. Would 1:1 be better than what I have?
1,5 to 1 assuming 8000rpm, 3" pitch and 8 tooth drivers.

RS
 
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