Question about 2003 Honda CB 250 Nighthawk

1 Answer

Difficult down shifting

Is there an adjustment besides clutch play?

Posted by on

  • Rob Selvy
    Rob Selvy May 11, 2010

    The only adjustment on a Honda for adjusting the shifting will not solve your problem. All it does is center the "shift play" to a neutral position when adjusted usually in third gear. If you are having troubles down shifting you want to make certain that you have 1/8 in. of free play at the clutch arm on the case and about 1/4 in. at the lever. Make sure you use a good quality grade of Motorcycle oil for your engine. Automotive oils do not have the same additives to help with shifting and clutch usage. Do you have problems in any specific gear or is it in all ranges?


1 Answer

  • Level 2:

    An expert who has achieved level 2 by getting 100 points


    An expert that gotĀ 5 achievements.


    An expert whose answer gotĀ voted for 20 times.


    An expert who has answered 20 questions.

  • Expert
  • 94 Answers

Hi, There is no other adjustments besides clutch free play, however make sure you use proper oil type in engine/gearbox.

Posted on Dec 02, 2008

Add Your Answer

Uploading: 0%


Complete. Click "Add" to insert your video. Add



Related Questions:

1 Answer

It is difficult to get my bike to go into neutral if I am standing still .. if it is going it will shift into neutral.....

the clutch is dragging then,i bet it also goes into neutral when the engine isnt running easily ? if it has a hydraulic clutch bleed it if its a cable clutch adjust it so there is 2 mm free play at the lever and if its still dragging it coukd either be a grooved clutch basket or warped clutch metal plates.

May 18, 2015 | 1998 Honda VT 1100 C3 Shadow Aero

1 Answer


perhaps you're looking at early signs of clutch wear. DO NOT be driving it util you accomplish an adjustment. Even though you may not realize it, it may be slipping at low gears, only detectable in high gear when it's under it's greatest load. Adjust your cable at either end, you should have about 1/4 inch free play to be sure the clutch is completely out, and it shouldn't creep or be difficult to shift out of neutral. It's an educated "feel" thing, you'll never go wrong spending a couple bucks and buying a service manual which lays it out step by step.

Aug 18, 2014 | Motorcycles

1 Answer

I have a 2006 Honda crf 230f and it's really hard

Difficult shifting is typically resolved by clutch adjustment.

Jul 02, 2013 | Motorcycles

2 Answers

Ok i fixed all the other problems but now the clutch is messing up it shifts gears just fine but when i put into first gear its like im not even holding the clutch in the bike just wants to go even wh

clutch is out of adjustment. When you shifted down did you speed shift down or use the clutch. Maybe then clutch cable broke, or even worse internal clutch damage or bent shifting fork. If you can shift thru all your gears than shifting forks good. Than its a clutch only problem. But still can be internal damage. Good luck

Nov 20, 2012 | 2000 Suzuki TL 1000 R

1 Answer

I have a 2003 Harley Sportster 1200 XL Custom. It sometimes won't shift gears up or down and I have to keep trying until it does. When it doesn't shift, I feel no pressure on the pedal until it finally...

It sounds like you may have two problems. The not shifting problem sounds like the shifter pawl is giving you a problem. The revving but not speeding up is the clutch slipping. You may be able to fix the clutch slippage problem with a simple adjustment of the clutch. The shifter pawl is a bit more difficult. If you need clutch plates in the clutch, you'll need a special tool to disassemble and reassemble the clutch. The shifter pawl is located in the primary right behind the clutch assembly.

Good Luck

Mar 29, 2011 | Harley Davidson XL 1200 C Sportster Custom...

2 Answers

Recently, it has become hard to downshift my 2006 VTX1300R. Also difficult to get into neutral? Adjust clutch cable?

If you are using an automotive oil , it may be causing the issue. You can use any oil that is JASO MA certified motorcycle oil. 10w-40 for cold climate. 20w-50 for warm climate/touring. Car oils use different additives and may cause scoring in certain types of cam bearings. Do not use any oil that says " Energy Conserving " on the label . It will shorten the life of your wet clutch and transmission gears. If you choose Synthetic oils, they will help your bike run cooler and shift easier. At 1300 km you should have no problem switching over to full synthetic motor oil. I drive a 1976 GL1000 Goldwing and have similar shifting problems unless I use a full synthetic motorcycle oil . The problem is most noticeable in hot weather and just after getting off the freeway and onto city streets. Normal clutch problems on a cable clutch would be slippage caused by a binding cable, a worn clutch, or a cable set too tight.

Jan 15, 2011 | 2006 Honda VTX 1300 S

1 Answer

My bike will not shift into 3,4,or 5th. The toe/heal shifter has excess play and nuetral can be difficult to find. Shop tech says there is a broken spring in trans which requires the teardown of the...

Hi and welcome to fixya,

Nice bike. The problem with flappy or loose shifters can be caused by worn out shifter linkages. These are ball joints connected to a rod which enable play forward or backward. You mentioned an excessive play, I suggest you replace these shift linkages, make the necessary adjustments and you'll be surprised how responsive your shifter will be.

I highly suggest you check on this part first before proceeding with transmission problems.

Other related concerns relating to poor shifting:
-Clutch release
-clutch spring adjustment (center of the clutch cage)

I hope this helps

Jan 14, 2011 | 2000 Harley Davidson FLHR-FLHRI Road king

1 Answer

Difficult to select neutral once warmed up,have checked clutch,tickover speed,chain tension,but it still will not go into neutral without stopping engine.

Two things: first, if there's too much free play at the clutch lever, the clutch won't fully disengage and neutral will be hard to get into. Adjust the clutch cable so that there's only about 1/4" of free play at the tip of the clutch lever. Then, when was the last oil change done? If the oil is dirty, or a low quality oil is used in the engine it will have a dramatic effect on how well the transmission shifts. Try changing the oil and be sure to use the type and viscosity called for in the owner's manual.

Nov 28, 2009 | 2004 Suzuki RV 125 VanVan

1 Answer


If it is difficult to get into first gear when stopped then there might be a problem with the clutch. You should have about 10mm of free end play when the clutch lever is out. If it has more than 10mm of free play the clutch is not completely disengauging when you pull in the clutch lever.
If the clutch lever is okay then it is remotely possible that you have bent shift forks. If so, they must be replaced not straightened.

Nov 24, 2009 | 1999 Honda VT 1100 C3 Shadow Aero

1 Answer

Wire clutch adjustment

Pulling the lever releases the clutch. Disengageing it so you don't go. Ok, in order to engage the clutch fully, you release the lever and you must have at leas 1/4 inch free play.
If it is not going in gear easily, you probably have too much free play and you are not fully disengageing.. There is the possibility of an internal adjust ment Try the above and let me know how or if that works. Clutch lever pulled by closing your fist releases the clutch for shifting.

May 28, 2009 | 1996 Moto Guzzi Sport 1100 i

Not finding what you are looking for?
2003 Honda CB 250 Nighthawk Logo

Related Topics:

185 people viewed this question

Ask a Question

Usually answered in minutes!

Top Honda Experts

Arnie Burke
Arnie Burke

Level 3 Expert

4477 Answers


Level 3 Expert

61037 Answers

Gino Cussen
Gino Cussen

Level 2 Expert

216 Answers

Are you a Honda Expert? Answer questions, earn points and help others

Answer questions

Manuals & User Guides