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  • 1 Post By Eucl1d
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October 28th, 2017, 11:51 AM   #1
Joined: Mar 2017
From: Vancouver, BC

Posts: 60
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I Ride: 2008 FE 550
Question 2008 FE 550 Sprague clutch

Hi folks,

Read a bit in older threads, but neither wanting to necropost or clutter the other clutch basket thread, here's the issue.

Like a few of yours, my bike has the starter spine/whine issue. Roughly half the times I hit the estart. I could live with it, but now that I'm elbows deep in the case as part of my dowel hunting expedition, I'm thinking this is as good a chance as any to sort this.

Trouble is, both the sprague clutch and the gear piece look fine. No cupping or flattening on the inside surface, and the outer looks good too - assuming the rounded triangular profiles of the individual nipples is correct.

So is this simply a Taffy spring kit fix? Or are either the gear or the clutch actually pooched?

Attached Thumbnails
2008 FE 550 Sprague clutch-img_6249.jpg   2008 FE 550 Sprague clutch-img_6250.jpg   2008 FE 550 Sprague clutch-img_6251.jpg  
canadius is offline  
October 28th, 2017, 12:00 PM   #2
ede's Avatar
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From: Germany

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I Ride: Husaberg FE 501 2002
I didn't have this issue yet - first guess - you found the reason for the "spin/whine"...
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October 28th, 2017, 01:13 PM   #3
Joined: Mar 2017
From: Vancouver, BC

Posts: 60
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I Ride: 2008 FE 550

I know I've found the general issue. The question was about what to replace.
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October 28th, 2017, 01:27 PM   #4
Joined: Dec 2013
From: nottinghamshire england

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I Ride: 2002 fs 650e and 2004 fe 450 enduro
Iv just installed a fresh garter spring that taff supplies, but his previous one did snap, iv come to realise that the berg electric starters are a warm option only, if your constantly stop starting and using it to start a cold engine then it will only last a matter of time, this is my opinion, iv battled with my starter for the last 2 years
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October 28th, 2017, 01:51 PM   #5
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Joined: Mar 2017
From: New Zealand

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I Ride: 2007 FS550E Supermotard
I've stopped bothering with the electric starter. Bike starts pretty easy on the boot (or trainer) once you learn the technique. And it seems to start even easier now since fitting the Kibblewhite dual valve springs, which I assume is attributable to the lower seated pressure?

In other words, just use the kicker!
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October 28th, 2017, 11:25 PM   #6
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Joined: Nov 2001
From: Ely, England

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these bikes start on the button lads! you just have to get to the bottom of why yours aren't?

if you can't get yours starting on the button then say so and keep searching, asking questions, testing. I have put all the answers out there, for instance: DON'T use fully synthetic if you want electric start! that's the first one!

these things are always 'work in progress' because of the seasonal changes, valve clearances and fuel deterioration issues. there is no constant in our world.

just recently, we had a bike we'd done everything too (2002 FS650e) except the beefy starter. stuck that on and it started straight away!

then the next week we did another 2002 FS650e and despite charging the customers 'brand new' (sic) CTZ7S battery it still wouldn't start so I stuck a new one on fully charged and off we went with that one too!

every single bike has something wrong with it and I have to identify it. I had a 450 about 3 weeks ago, two changes of pilot jet and now it runs sweetly but it took a 48PJ to do it and the valve clearances despite them being checked twice. they were wrong. remember the 2 metre rule is the answer!

generally with the 650s 2001-2003, the carbs are the worst, the ignition timing is always wrong. fit the 08 cam, re-jet it and watch the valve clearances.

the 08 cam makes them easier to start but they need re-jetting.

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October 29th, 2017, 09:53 AM   #7
Joined: Mar 2017
From: Vancouver, BC

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I Ride: 2008 FE 550
Thanks. I guess. Lol.

I maybe wasn't clear. EVERY time the sprague clutch DOES work fine, the bike roars to life.

So as per the thread title, my issue is not about whether or not my valves are adjusted, or what my oil is, or whether the pace of tectonic plate shift is affecting the migratory mating patterns of sub Saharan polar bears.

The bike starts absolutely perfectly when the sprague is doing its job. But roughly half the time, the sprague will spin without engaging the motor. So something is amiss with the sprague. So it's a simple question, from the photos, which appear to show all components not worn, where which do folks suggest are the likely culprits? The inner clutch ring, the outer gear ring, or just the spring?


Last edited by canadius; October 29th, 2017 at 09:58 AM. Reason: Typo
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October 29th, 2017, 01:59 PM   #8
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From: athens greece

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I Ride: Husa FS650e 08 & Kawa Z1000 04 Supercharged
When i press the starter button,i have already pressed the decompression lever over the clutch lever.
After the first revolution of the engine without load i let the decompression lever,the engine builds compression and starts fine everytime.
So,i give to the electric starter a first breathe before it "hits" on the wall of the engine compression.

Last edited by dynagrego; October 29th, 2017 at 02:11 PM.
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2008, 550, clutch, sprague

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