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Product Report   

Recloc Auto Clutch

Riding impression of the Recloc Automatic Clutch Assembly

 

 

Hazels Revloc.jpg (74615 bytes)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

   

  

See this guy?  That’s Gary Hazel, World famous four-stroke tuner and owner of Thumper racing in Marshal Texas.

 And the bike he’s sitting on? Just your ordinary lowered, custom suspended, big-bore ( 470 ), KTM.  Gary made this one up special for a client with special needs. It’s suspended just for this particular client, of course, but in addition to that, Gary has lowered both ends slightly to not only lessen the ride height, but that, in turn (s) lowers the center of gravity slightly and makes for a very nimble woods machine.

 This particular bike has another interesting feature that I found the need to experience, and that’s one of those fancy new automatic clutches from Revloc.

   Now, if you’re not familiar with this device, it’s a replacement clutch assembly for your bike, that turns your manual clutch, into an automatic clutch…one that allows you to still retain manual control if ya want, but believe me, you’ll like the automatic part better.

 So naturally, when Gary offered a ride on it I just had to see what it was like. Now of course this was a customer’s bike, and so I only took the liberty of riding for a little while, but here’s what I found…

  It works like this. First of course, you hop on your scoot, then you fiddle with the shift lever to see if it’s in neutral…but ya know what, it doesn’t really matter anyway, so just hit the starter button…no need to worry about that pesky clutch lever either, why? Because in gear, or not, clutch pulled or not, the Revloc equipped bike fires up and sits there at idle.

    Ready to go?  Fine, just select first gear, and give it the gas…off you go, Smooth and controlled. Now I have to admit, and I told Gary this as well, it actually felt a little weird. Why? Because, I normally ride one of Gary’s other creations, a YZ 450, and the clutch is an important part of riding, not because it’s down on power, lord no, but like any normal bike, starting after a stall can be a nightmare, and a stall is all the more likely if you’re not concentrating on the clutch as you come brake-sliding into a hot corner, or find yourself a gear or two too high for any particulat situation.

 So, coming into a corner with the back brake locked and not touching the clutch lever at all feels…well…weird.  The good news is that in a situation like this, all ya gotta do is hit the gas when your ready, and you’re smokin’ outta the corner faster than you ever coulda with a regular clutch! 

 Here’s an example, when I first got on the Thumper Racing, Revloc equipped bike, I tried all the things you may have a question about. Like starts.

  Well, without using the clutch lever at all you just hit the gas. The clutch locks up and without any ( or much ) wheel-spin, you’re accelerating away. I tried it several times, some using the clutch and some in auto mode. I’d have to actually try it in a race to be sure, but it seems like both ways were pretty fast. With the clutch you get lots of noise, and wheel-spin, while in auto mode ( Revloc controlled ) the bike seems to motor away quickly, but without the noise and roost, it just doesn’t feel the same. I’d say fifty / fifty on starts. It could go either way depending on the terrain and your expertise.

 What about wheelies? Again, you could use the clutch if ya wanted, but the bike would do it if ya just hit the gas while in the meat of the powerband, though in slow tight trails, like trying to clear a log with no notice, I had to pull on the bars pretty good to get it up…the front end that is. That one might take a little practice. Here, I’d say that manul use of the clutch is preferred. And I’m talking walkin’ speed low rpm “suddenly there was this log” kinda situation. Using only auto mode ( not using the clutch lever ), you need a little more notice, and a little more rpm to make it the same as a regular clutch.

  Brake slides? Not a problem at all. Hit the brakes like always, and when you’re ready hit the gas. This, I think, is the Revloc’s forte. In fact during the first few minutes of my ride, I cruised down a straight road in about third gear, and suddenly just stabbed the rear brake. It locked up the rear wheel as expected. The engine dropped to idle. No stall.  I quickly hit the gas and pulled a little wheelie and was off down the road. Boom! Here I’d say that the Revloc is the only way to go. !00%. Going fast down twisty trails, I don’t think a regular clutch can beat the Revloc at all.

 

  So after playing around on it for a few minutes, getting the feel of it, we went over to ride a mile or two of the cross country track. Now here’s where it really shined. The Revloc equipped Thumper Racing KTM was an absolute pleasure to ride. It was almost like cheatin’. No chance of a stall, but with all the benefits of  compression braking and powerful torque. Oh yes, I forgot to mention, the Revloc clutch stays locked-up until you drop to idle, so you can still use the compression braking on your big thumper going down a hill or into a corner.

Any weirdness other that what I mentioned? Yeah, just one thing. When the Revloc disengages your clutch for you, and you also think it's time to grab the clutch lever, it feels like you have no lever. Aparently, when it disengages, it's just as if you pulled in the clutch with the lever, so if you do pull in the lever, there's nothing there. At first I thought the clutch master cylinder was going out, but when I mentioned it to Gary, he explained that the Revloc and I both thought it was time to pull in the clutch...and the Revloc got there first.

The cost ...a grand, and your old clutch, according to the Revloc website.

Is it worth it?  They say it lasts twice as long as a regular clutch, 'cause there's less slippage, and that much is evident. But a grand? Well put it this way, if you own a Yamaha 450 like me, and are on the last lap, a hundred yards from the finish, with two of your competitors right behind you, how much is it worth knowing that you can blast that corner as hard and fast as you want with no chance of a stall?

 

 After a quick ride, I let one of the Patman Racing T1 members ride it, and as we switched bikes, a couple of things were clear. One was I didn’t have to worry what gear I left it in, or even that I was holding the clutch while we danced around switching bikes, and two was this, Mike leaned over and said “You were getting’ around pretty fast on that thing”.

 

  Enough said.

 

 

 

For more info on the clutch visit   http://www.revloc.com/default.htm