Since the first wheels were invented we men and women were obsessed with speed…
Speed signifies power, speed signifies domination
And speed signifies fucking clutch and engine sex in a highly complicated greasy dark bedroom called GEARBOX, where actual high quality lubrication is used to ensure proper to and fro movement…if u know what I mean 😉
Long gone are the days where the speed of motorcycles were limited to 30-40 mph (roughly 48-64 kph)
Nowadays even some battery-powered toy cars can go that fast
Anyways…since we are talking about engine sex…oh sorry…motorcycles…a thing called SLIPPER CLUTCH comes into play
What slipper clutch is and why do I care to explain it to you all good mannered grammar Nazi audience is because it’s a very significant mechanism developed to ensure high-speed gear shifting and imitate engine braking at speeds your HERO HONDA SPLENDOR can only dream of 😉
Slipper clutches have been used in most high displacement four-stroke racing motorcycles since the early 1980s. Slipper clutches were introduced in the 1970s by John Gregory and TC Christenson on “Hogslayer” the most successful drag racing motorcycle of the 1970s. Made of bronze sintered plates from an earthmover and a Rambler 2 speed transmission, the drive-train let TC reach 180 mph in the quarter-mile.
Slipper clutches are currently used on many high performance sport bikes
Although it was present in Kawasaki Ninja when it was launched in India, people started talking about it when it was introduced in the Almighty KTM Duke 390 in 2015 and the following models.
The reason everyone is talking about it now and not then has to do something with the popularity and price of the KTMs OR maybe because it comes in ORANGE We will never know.
HOW IT WORKS?
Well for starters…
They are designed to partially disengage or “slip” when the rear wheel tries to drive the engine faster than it would run under its own power.
Imagine this- You are on your Bajaj pulsar 180 on a highway in 5th gear already past your maximum rev range and your engine is begging you to slow down, there comes an unexpected turn…aaannd you down-shift on a non abs bike, on an Indian road. After this you can only pray to god that you don’t wake up on a hospital bed next morning.
In normal clutches the engine braking forces will normally be transmitted back through the drive chain causing the rear wheel to hop, chatter and/or lose traction…and that is BAD really really bad if you live in India.
What Slipper clutches do is eliminate this extra loading on the rear suspension giving riders a more predictable ride and minimize the risk of over-revving the engine during down-shifts. Slipper clutches can also prevent a catastrophic rear wheel lockup in case of engine seizure.
Well that’s a good thing isn’t it, so why doesn’t every motorcycle manufacturer includes it in their motorcycles?
BECAUSE IT’S FUCKING EXPENSIVE…as simple as that!
Slipper clutches are hard to manufacture, install and maintain….they require shit loads of complicated parts which are not manufactured in India and they are hard to repair if damaged…and believe me they get damaged quite fast because the people who will buy such kind of motorcycles will not use them to go to the market and buy groceries.
They will RACE them…that’s the thing about a motorcycle…being a rider myself, I know the feeling of swinging your leg over an internal combustion engine fitted in between two wheels that goes at speeds that can kill you. But you can’t resist twisting that throttle because there is no other feeling like that.
Have a look at this video which describes KTM Duke 390 with slipper clutch.
Being said that…slipper clutches should be made available at least as an option for more than 200 cc motorcycles in India.
This article is written by Himanshu Bhavsar. Comment down below what you guys feel about it.