Timothy S. Frazier

Liberty, Motorcycles, and Guns

Timothy S. Frazier - Liberty, Motorcycles, and Guns

Triumph Rocket III Popping Out of Gear

This could be serious.

Moonshine (my 2008iTriumph Rocket 3 Classic) is currently in the garage awaiting a trailer ride to Eurosport Cycle. She started popping out of first and second gear under load on my way home from work the other day, which was very disturbing as the first occurance was in the middle of a hard lean into a turn at about 30 MPH.

I adjusted the clutch cable…no effect on the problem.

Google searches on rocket 3 gearbox and shifting issues hasn’t turned up much info on what it takes to fix this issue, but plenty of anecdotal stories from folks about multiple trips to the dealer with no full resolutions.

This isn’t a matter of not getting her into gear in the first place. I made sure that it was firmly into first and second each time and that power was being transmitted to the rear wheel. The thing fell back into neutral even while accelerating with the transmission under load.

Anyone else out there had this experience and gotten it satisfactorily resolved?

Category: Motorcycles
  • avatar

    MATTYHOON says:

    YES THE OL SECOND GEAR SLIP IS A HORRIBLE SHOULDER CRUNCHING NOISE I HAVE JUST EXPIERIENCED TOO AND AM SHITTING MYSELF TO FIND OUT JUST HOW MUCH THE FIX IS GOING TO BE ,cap lock off, it is interesting to hear of you guys getting the same trouble ,i thought until now my rocket was unbreakable but 5 years of hard riding has proved me wrong .,maybe time for an upgrade

    June 7, 2013 at 2:06 AM
  • avatar

    van looy benny says:

    had the seem problem 2 new gears there upgradet ones an the problem is solved for the moment my rocket is supercharged 244hp at the backwheel and 300nm torque its insane to drive but a lot of fun

    January 4, 2013 at 9:10 AM
  • avatar

    Juan Martinez says:

    Well, I did it too! I donned Darth Vader’s mask in lieu of my Shoei. I’m a proud papa of a new Dunlop Direzza 225/50VR16. I opted for the down-size by measuring the Section width & OD of the Metz & Dunlop. The stock sized Dunlop (240/55) was just too fat looking and about an inch taller. Plus, I think the section width being narrower makes it just a fraction easier to pitch into the curves.
    My experiences mirror yours as I first tried it out and I ditto your comments about the newfound grip! Twisting the throttle when taking street corners used to be intimidating, almost always waiting for the Metz to step out and initiate a tank slapper. I’m now making forward motion instead and in some cases leaving a nice black line where I came from all the while ‘leaned over’ :0D.
    The ruts, grooves, and road irregularities do keep you a bit more on your toes but I almost see that as a benefit, keeping awareness up and daydreaming down. I actually like the need for a little more countersteer effort on the bars during directional changes. It keeps the muscles tone and the blood flowing.
    The kind folks over at Eurosport did the deed for me. Kudos to them. The ‘other’ Triumph dealers were much more conveniently located but nixed the notion. It was a journey across numerous townships and a couple counties to get there but it was well worth it!
    Hope you get the tranny issue solved. Mine has not gotten any worse. Then again, it hasn’t gotten any better either…
    Send me an email. I’d like to hook up.
    Juan.

    September 13, 2012 at 2:36 PM
  • avatar

    Bloviating Zeppelin says:

    I wish I could have a Rocket III in order to have this problem in the first place!

    ;^)

    BZ

    August 5, 2012 at 8:18 PM
  • avatar

    Juan Martinez says:

    Hi Tim,
    I’ve browsed your site from time to time admiring your handiwork and writing. I too am an R3C owner for the past 1/2 year and love it! Mine is a 2006 Black and Red unit with a black engine.
    But I have noticed a glitch that is similar to your current dilemma. I have momentary loss of drive (and we are talking a split second here) only when in 2nd gear and under a load such a heavy accelleration or going up steep inclines a la Talamina trail, etc… almost as if a gear has a tooth missing and it skips the adjoining cog’s tooth as they try to mesh. At least that’s the best explaination I can come up with. I too have tried searching for clues online and found none. It is forgotten most of the time until I find a rare moment to ride a bit aggressively, then I’m reminded to start doing some troubleshooting!
    I’ve wanted to make contact with you for a while but keep forgetting to follow through. I’d love to tap into your knowledge of the triple beast.
    I too would like to make a forray into the dark side and wondered if you ever got your tire changer or found a ‘cool’ guy who’d do the tire swap for you?

    July 11, 2012 at 3:45 PM
    • avatar

      Tim Frazier says:

      Thanks for the gracious compliments, Juan.

      I did cross over to the dark side. The “cool guy” was my brother who had access to some industrial strength tire changing equipment and about 3 hours to spare. It was like wrestling a crocodile to get ‘er done but it was soooo worth it. After two days riding I got used to the new feel and I now prefer it greatly to the old Metz.

      Traction is incredible in a straight line, and I haven’t been able to detect any less traction in the curves. I was very hesitant to really lean her over at first after installing the car tire, but nowadays I hit the curves as hard as I ever did and frequently scrape the foot board sacrificial pegs. The girl has not lost her footing…ever.

      As to the mystery gearbox/clutch issue, I haven’t saved up the two grand I’m thinking will be worst case scenario if the fix requires cracking open the case, and Moon Shine is still sitting in the garage awaiting her trip to the shop.

      Here’s a link to the pics and article on the dark side install:

      http://4fraziers.com/wp/2011/09/05/dark-side-motorcycling/

      July 11, 2012 at 4:00 PM
  • avatar

    Greybeard says:

    Here’s hoping enough others are having the problem that a fix is forthcoming.
    There’s nothing worse than being unsure of your safety when riding.
    Good luck Tim.

    July 5, 2012 at 11:22 PM

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