Question about kawasaki Ninja 250R Motorcycles

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I was coming off the interstate and it wouldn't down shift, but when it finally did it was fine till i got home.. i started it the next day and warmed it up, but when i put it in 1st gear it jolted and shut off.. it did this about 3 times so i gave up. is this a problem with the clutch or transmission?

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It sounds like a problem with a hydraulic clutch system. Air in the lines would cause the clutch to not fully engage and cause a judder or jolt making it harder to put into and out of gear.Try bleeding the hydraulic clutch system first. If you need to , put new seals in the system . If the clutch plates are stuck together that would also cause the jolting . You may have to take the clutch apart , separate the plates , inspect it , replace the bad parts if any, and coat the plates with oil when you reassemble. Some of the problems may be oil related. Be sure to use an oil with the JASO MA motorcycle certification. 10w-40 for cold climate, 20w-50 for warm climate/touring. Do not use any oil that says Energy Conserving on the label. It will shorten the life of your wet clutch and transmission gears. Synthetic oil will help your bike run cooler and shift easier. A 20w-50 synthetic would definitely help overcome some of the symptoms you describe. Be sure the clutch cable or hydraulic clutch system is working correctly. If it is a cable system make sure the cable is not binding and is fully engaging the clutch.

Posted on Oct 04, 2010

  • akelly740 Oct 05, 2010

    the clutch's cable system works fine, because it is fully engaging. It also won't let me shift up into 2nd from neutral. If it is a matter of checking the plates to see if they are stuck, then is this something I could do on my own or would i have to send it to the shop?

  • David Belcher
    David Belcher Oct 05, 2010

    If you drain the oil into a clean pan it can be reused. A synthetic oil may be a benefit for machine that is a hard shifter (when warm). If you work carefully and do not damage the gasket you can re use it. With the clutch in sight usually you can just unbolt the springs to get access to the plates for inspection. Make a note of the order of the plates when you remove them. If you need to look at an expanded picture of the set up on line parts stores let you look up your own parts. Bikebandit.com or babbittsonline.com will let you see the break down of your clutch. If you want to save money you can easily learn to do it yourself. Have you tried shifting through the gears manually with the engine off. To do this you may have to lift the rear wheel off the ground and rotate the rear tire back and forth to hand shift the transmission. With any luck you are not having an issue with a damaged shift drum or shift forks. Don't forget to inspect the actuator lever on the motor for the clutch, just in case the issue is there.

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