I have a 1999 Suzuki SV650S with 15k miles on the clock. Sometimes the gear/shift pedal is really stiff to down or upshift. About 70% of the time it shifts nice and smooth. I haven't been able to identify any pattern to this.

I had a go at adjusting the cable at both ends but this made no difference. Oil was changed about a year ago, fully synthetic. I bought the bike couple of years ago and don't remember having such an issue when I bought it, but remember hoping the oil change would help the gear change issue so probably had the problem for around 15 months. Sometimes the stiffness doesn't come for a week or so, sometimes on / off several times a day. I use my bike most days.

  • Do you mean the clutch lever or the gear lever
    – Mauro
    Jul 7, 2016 at 7:47
  • Gear lever I assume... One that moves with your foot. Jul 8, 2016 at 13:06
  • TBH i have a 99 sv650s and it happens to me a lot when I ride slow while the bike is hot (like, in city). When the gear lever (selector ?) feels bloked, I quickly half release the clutch and squeeze it back, and it releases the selector. Everything is allright on the bike so I guess it's simple gearbox wear
    – TNCreator
    Sep 27, 2016 at 9:41

1 Answer 1


The clutch cable needs lubrication from time to time

Inside your clutch cable lubricants can become gummed up as well can run out of the cable over time depending on the type of lubrication you are using within the cable. If the cable has not been lubricated for 15,000 miles chances are that the lubrication has lost much of it's friction reduction properties.

I suggest you remove the cable completely and get some proper lubricant to push into the cable housing. I prefer non-petroleum lubricants that are frequently called 'dry lubricants'.

A dry lubricant uses graphite with a very 'thin' petroleum carrier that will evaporate only leaving behind the graphite. The benefits of dry lubricants are:

  • Less waste

  • Less petroleum (because organisms hate the petroleum)

  • Less greasy

  • Less leaking all over everything (less messy)

  • More better

Graphite is an excellent petroleum based (greasy and terrible) grease replacement for lubrication duty in cable housings. My very subjective favorite dry lubricant for cables is this.

There are a plethora of others as provided my initial link.


Cables require lubrication and maintenance whether it's a Jeep Cherokee or an SV650S.

Dry lubricants are inexpensive and easy to use.

Dry lubricants provide an excellent low friction solution for cables with housings.

Lubricate that cable and extend it's life by reducing the friction that you complain of when using the clutch.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .