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1995 900M
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Have a 1995 Monster 900 and it only has 5 speed when specs say it should have 6. It shifts fine almost all of the time but if I shift too lightly (up or down) when going into 3rd it doesn't catch (spins like neutral). Makes me wonder if its just missing 3rd and going straight to 4th or 2nd as the case may be.

Any thoughts?
Thanks
 

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Record rpm/mph and cross reference against GearingCommander, or just look at the ratio:ratio gap if you are familiar. I don't think you can shift 2 gears at once even if one is totally stripped of teeth, you have to shift a second time to get across it.

Are you counting gears, or gear shifts? Because this mistake has been made before, lol. 6 gears, 5 shifts.
 

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Well, your 3rd gear is not 'missing', if the gear cog was broken or such, the noise would be horrendous.
What it is usually called is 'a false neutral'. A spot between all gears that doesn't quite engage correctly.
but if I shift too lightly (up or down)
1. This is the main culprit on a Ducati, YOU, especially the older ones with lots of miles. Often the fix is quoted as "Shift like you mean it".

2. Some say clutch adjustment not correct and dragging when clutch lever pulled slowing the change and not quite engaging.
solutions offered range from bleeding clutch and checking lever play etc. etc.

3. The selector shaft is bent, or centering spring broken, yes, can happen. In my experience though, you would have false neutrals between all / any gears 1-2, 2-3. etc. etc.

4. If only between one particular set, as you mentioned, I have found it to be 'out of adjustment'. I have looked closely at this years ago and we found the distance between positions on the internal selector drum slightly longer between 2-3 and 3-4. and is the usual spot for 'missed gear changes'. It is not an issue if the fork / spring assembly is correctly adjusted. In the late 90's, we did a lot of warranty fixes for the false neutral problem. In all the ones I did, it was bad adjustment. Mainly though, The salesman at the shop raced a Ducati, hitting a false neutral on the track was dangerous and we spent some time looking into it.

Before tearing into the alt case, just try changing gears with a bit more force, when changing up, hold the pressure with your foot until the clutch is released, don't just stab it. Most times it just needs a different riding style. You won't break anything.

If you decide to go in, here is a diagram of what it all looks like.
Product Line Font Auto part Circuit component



24. is the arm that moves the gears, there are marks to set this to a central position
20. is the spring that keeps it engaged, but allows it to 'ride up' between gears.
33. is the adjuster plate, two bolts, and you can see the holes are slotted to allow adjustment.
If it's out of adjustment, the arm does not fully extend in either direction, giving a false neutral.

here is a picture of the selector drum showing the 'grooves' to move between gears, well some of them.
The selector shaft rides on the 'wider' part on the right, and either, pushes or pulls the pins to rotate the drum.

Automotive lighting Cylinder Font Auto part Engineering


For more insight, just search, "Ducati false neutral" It's quite common.
Hope this helps.
 

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Make sure you don't hold pressure on the gear lever with your foot between gear changes.
Sometimes if the lever doesn't go to its natural position (you didn't fully get your foot off the lever) you can have issues finding the next gear, probably related to what ronski was referring to.
I also find when my oil is due for a change I find false neutrals more often.
 

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Agree, resting your foot on the lever can prevent it returning to center, especially with heavy boots on, but what I was saying was be firm with the foot and 'release' when clutch action done. Yes, definitely don't hold until next change.

hold the pressure with your foot until the clutch is released, don't just stab it.
 

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1995 900M
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7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Well, your 3rd gear is not 'missing', if the gear cog was broken or such, the noise would be horrendous.
What it is usually called is 'a false neutral'. A spot between all gears that doesn't quite engage correctly.

1. This is the main culprit on a Ducati, YOU, especially the older ones with lots of miles. Often the fix is quoted as "Shift like you mean it".

2. Some say clutch adjustment not correct and dragging when clutch lever pulled slowing the change and not quite engaging.
solutions offered range from bleeding clutch and checking lever play etc. etc.

3. The selector shaft is bent, or centering spring broken, yes, can happen. In my experience though, you would have false neutrals between all / any gears 1-2, 2-3. etc. etc.

4. If only between one particular set, as you mentioned, I have found it to be 'out of adjustment'. I have looked closely at this years ago and we found the distance between positions on the internal selector drum slightly longer between 2-3 and 3-4. and is the usual spot for 'missed gear changes'. It is not an issue if the fork / spring assembly is correctly adjusted. In the late 90's, we did a lot of warranty fixes for the false neutral problem. In all the ones I did, it was bad adjustment. Mainly though, The salesman at the shop raced a Ducati, hitting a false neutral on the track was dangerous and we spent some time looking into it.

Before tearing into the alt case, just try changing gears with a bit more force, when changing up, hold the pressure with your foot until the clutch is released, don't just stab it. Most times it just needs a different riding style. You won't break anything.

If you decide to go in, here is a diagram of what it all looks like. View attachment 230177


24. is the arm that moves the gears, there are marks to set this to a central position
20. is the spring that keeps it engaged, but allows it to 'ride up' between gears.
33. is the adjuster plate, two bolts, and you can see the holes are slotted to allow adjustment.
If it's out of adjustment, the arm does not fully extend in either direction, giving a false neutral.

here is a picture of the selector drum showing the 'grooves' to move between gears, well some of them.
The selector shaft rides on the 'wider' part on the right, and either, pushes or pulls the pins to rotate the drum.

View attachment 230178

For more insight, just search, "Ducati false neutral" It's quite common.
Hope this helps.
Thanks so much for the detailed explanation and diagrams. I mostly don't notice as I tend to "shift with intention" but wanted to make sure I don't have a problem brewing.
 
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