WARNING to DCT riders: DO NOT ride if you have sticky left switchgear - Honda CRF1000L Africa Twin Forum
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post #1 of 202 (permalink) Old 03-11-2016, 05:19 AM Thread Starter
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WARNING to DCT riders: DO NOT ride if you have sticky left switchgear

Hi All. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news but I need to share my DCT experience of yesterday after my 600 mile service with you

In short, if you ride DCT and have the sticky left switchgear syndrome please TAKE CARE

Bike had its first service today (579 miles). I drew the dealer's attention to the sticking button on the left switchgear (the SET button that is used to control displayed fuel consumption / trip meters / ambient temp blah blah blah). Whilst outside showing them the problem, the DOWN select button packed up. I tell them I am not happy and fear the problem may spread to the paddle gear shift buttons (for non DCT riders the gear shifters are part of the same switch set)

Dealer services bike. Just an oil dump, oil filter and another filter for the DCT. Dealer tells me that the left hand switchgear is full of water. I ride in any weather, and on Wednesday that meant through foot deep floods. This IS an Africa Twin - that shouldn't have happened. Dealer logs a case with Honda, new left switchgear on it's way from Brussels to be fitted on Monday under warranty. Cool. I'll live without worrying about fuel consumption for a few days

Dealer test rides it after servicing it, I pay, gives me keys. Get out on the A420 for the 15 mile ride home - bike seems fine, although a bit more vibey than before, plus they gave me back the ludicrous amount of throttle free play. I ride it in a spirited fashion using a combination of it's full auto mode (DRIVE) and SPORTS 3, manually intervening to drop cogs using the paddle shifter upon corner entry. Bwaaarp Bwaaaarp Bwaaaaarp loving it

Ride into the town I live. It's busy. It's school kick out time and the roads have parked cars everywhere, people everywhere. Old boy coming towards me in a big Merc so I stop and wave him through. At this point I have the bike in Drive mode - it forces first gear on me when stopped, I have the option to select neutral but don't. In this situation the DCT acts like a twist and go effectively

Old boy passes me, I apply a light and constant throttle position - we pull away. (normally in this mode the bike short shifts up the box at about 1800rpm - it's ridiculously mild and at 35mph is usually already up into 5th). So we pull away as usual, and at about 5-10mph the revs suddenly go wild - HIGH - right up near the redline (but not banging off the limiter) - as if it found a false neutral and then of it's own accord dumps the clutch! Not it's usual beautifully smooth clutch work, it DUMPED the clutch. I was totally out of control, up on the back wheel in the middle of town, just missed a parked car - not knowing that the **** was going on. Manage to get it under control and didn't run anybody over. **** me right up. Badly

Once I'd calmed down and turned the bike off, I nursed it to a safer place and tried to replicate the issue. I felt bad. I thought it was my error. I can confirm that the same thing occurred a second time, only this time I was ready for it. It finds 'false' neutrals and is highly dangerous because I have no actual control of the clutch like on a manual bike!

If I had a pillion on the back we would have looped the thing in the middle of town - without question. Oh how I wish I had had my GoPro on

Don't want it anymore, don't want to ride it. Utterly dangerous. I have spoken to Honda UK - WHO WILL GET BACK TO ME IN THREE WORKING DAYS - despite the fact that this is currently Europe's best selling bike and almost 50% of buyers are opting for the the very clever, very unpredictable got a mind of it's ******* own dual clutch transmission

Don't know what else to say apart from please please please take care on your DCTs, especially if you have sticking left switchgear. This morning I am furious, pissed off, angry but have collated my thoughts. It seems that the left switchgear is sending confusing signals to the gearbox - which in turn is giving random neutrals and applying totally random unexpected clutch behaviour

Gutted

Honda UK don't seem to want to take me seriously, so until they do I'll carry on being interviewed by MCN and will spread my experience far and wide


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post #2 of 202 (permalink) Old 03-11-2016, 05:27 AM
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OK so this might be a problem, BUT other than for the OP I don't think the rest of us should be panicking. I very much doubt if this is a widespread problem as there are now a fair number of DCT bikes out there and I have not heard of this before.
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post #3 of 202 (permalink) Old 03-11-2016, 05:31 AM Thread Starter
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Well it would be remiss of me to have experienced this and not shared with others

Trust me, this thing went wrong. Very wrong. I can't confirm that what I experienced was as a direct result of the sticking left switchgear due to water ingress, but there are certainly a number of reports of the switchgear issue

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post #4 of 202 (permalink) Old 03-11-2016, 05:32 AM
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Keep us posted.

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post #5 of 202 (permalink) Old 03-11-2016, 05:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by S4MST3R View Post
Well it would be remiss of me to have experienced this and not shared with others

Trust me, this thing went wrong. Very wrong. I can't confirm that what I experienced was as a direct result of the sticking left switchgear due to water ingress, but there a a number of reports of the switchgear issue
Absolutely, and I know it looks as though the switch is at fault however I think we need to see the root cause, it could for example be due to an issue with the service procedure or incorrect reassembly etc etc.

Hopefully Honda will be looking at this with some urgency. Please keep us informed.
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post #6 of 202 (permalink) Old 03-11-2016, 05:44 AM
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Glad you're OK, this problem sounds very dangerous indeed. If they do have any more similar issues there will very likely be a recall.
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post #7 of 202 (permalink) Old 03-11-2016, 05:51 AM
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Imagine the bike going "wild" when you are filtering or on a rainy day
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post #8 of 202 (permalink) Old 03-11-2016, 06:08 AM
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I REALLY want this Africa Twin to be the reliable around-the-world bike Honda is marketing it as. But if there ends up being a fair amount of reports like this and the 2017 model doesn't receive fixes, I'll end up getting an XR650L.

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post #9 of 202 (permalink) Old 03-11-2016, 06:18 AM Thread Starter
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Something else that tells me this is related to the left switchgear - HSTC. You can't wheelie the bike with traction control on - it's impossible. As soon as the front goes light it's like you hit an invisible rev limiter................ yesterday I had traction enabled, so why / how did it let me go skywards?
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post #10 of 202 (permalink) Old 03-11-2016, 07:46 AM
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Found this on the net:

Posted 08 May 2013 - 07:42 AM

This morning my NC700X DCT wouldn't stand still at the traffic lights on my usual commute run, and the switch to put it in neutral didn't work. The Drive/Sport/Neutral selector wasn't responsive, and I also think that the MT/AT button selected Sport mode. Turning the ignition off and on again didn't rectify the problem, but just as I was getting off the bike to push it, I could select neutral, then gear, and the problem resolved itself.

I'll see if it happens again then call Honda. I suspect an electrical problem. It was wet this morning after a dry spell, although I'm clutching at straws here a bit. Luckily I'm only a year in to the 2yr warranty.

Some details:

Bike was July 2012 delivery, has done 2,500 miles, 67mpg average commuting west London to central London. It's had the chain recall, first service at 900 miles. Is ridden slowly and rarely goes above 70mph. I'll check the oil level when I get back to the bike.


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