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Section 5 - Clutching - Items Affecting Clutching

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OVERVIEW of Items affecting CLUTCHING

The primary intent of this segment is to attempt to point of some of the factors that will and do affect HOW you SETUP or CHANGE your clutching.

RIDING Preferences or Styles
The BIGGEST determination is RIDING Preference. I’ve said it in Past Postings, BUT
really feel that it’s WORTH emphasizing again.


2)IF you have a Stock Machine Setup, DO NOT Re-Clutching, you will not gain a thing.
The Stock Clutching setup provided by the Polaris Engineers, DOES AN EXCELLENT
JOB, for about all types of riding.

3)Just because your Next Door Neighbor did it, DOES NOT MEAN it’s going to work for you. ABOVE all, DO NOT Re-Clutching because someone advertises or says that you GAIN XXX Horespower or that your machine will run faster. Simply NOT TRUE.

4)IF you’ve INCREASED your HP, Then you’ve changed the Clutching as it was originally setup AND If you expect to see any gains, RE-CLUTCH

5)If you changed your Original Tire setup, Rims, Tire Width, Tire Height, Tread Design,
Then you’ve changed the Clutching as it was originally setup AND…..MAYBE,
Re-Clutching , could help you regain SOMETHING that you’ve lost in your rim/tire selection. BUT TALLER, HEAVIER TIRES and/or RIMS could mean that some form of RE-GEARING is necessary. Bad News BEARS, it is my understanding at the present, they are NO Re-gearing options afforded to Polaris RZR’s. So either Be HAPPY with what you have OR GO BACK TO SOMETHING that is more in reason, for the purpose or intent that the UTV was Designed for.

YOU WILL NOT BE A HAPPY CAMPER. Case in point, YOU want to be the FASTIEST kid on the Block, OK, either Experiment or Tell your Selected Vendor What you want and YOU WILL GET IT. Get into the MUD Pits, get Dirty, Experiment or Tell your Selected Vendor What you want and YOU WILL GET IT.
BUT DON’T expect a setup that works WELL in a Single Environment to work WELL in another. You’ve got to compromise , Low End Torque(pulling power), Power Slides with no loose of RPM’s, ALL out TOP END. Now you can have a little of ALL or both,
BUT, YOU CAN’T HAVE IT ALL or BOTH WAYS. This has been my impression thru a number of different setups/clutching kits.

I’ll try to break out some of the major points that could affect your decision on where you need to Re-Clutch.

Overall WEIGHT
Now for some of us, THIS means we need to go on a Diet.:)). However, if you have purchased EVERY accessory that was offered and your Friend whips your A.. all the time racing, Then Check out some of the Weights Below, when you determine your setup. These weights were measured using BATHROOM scales (not the Most accurate),
But STILL EYE Opening.

Item Weighted………………Pounds
Typical 2” Ball & Receiver 7.4
Polaris Lock n Ride Accesssory Rack 20
Stock RZR seat 16.4
Grab(OH S…) bar 2.0
Polaris Deluxe Front Bumper 16.8
Polaris Deluxe Rear Bumper 11.16
Polaris Lock n Ride Cargo Box 14.6
PIAA Driving Lights 1.5
Polaris FULL Lock n Ride Windshield 8.4 -REALLY BAD NEWs Due to Wind
Polaris Plastic Sports Top 10.4
Aluminum Stick Stoppers (4) 10.2
1 ½” Aluminum Wheel Spacers (each) 2.5
Polaris Stock Steel Rim/Tire 8x12x25 (front) 28.4
Polaris Stock Steel Rim/Tire 10x12x25 (rear) 34.0
Polaris 8-Spoke Aluminum Crushers Rim/Tire 9x14x26 (front) 30.0
Polaris 8-Spoke Aluminum Crushers Rim/Tire 11x14x26 (rear) 38.0
Polaris Rock Sliders (2) 29.0
Warn Winch 29.0
Rear View Mirrow 1.0

And the list goes ON & ON, consider these:

Changes from STOCK
Factory Air/Box Intake
Skid Plate
Beadlock Rims
Heaviest/Tallest Tires Available

OK NOW add it UP, You STILL wondering why YOU get WHIPPED so often, go Figure.

Guys this is a REAL Sensitive Issue with some, so I going to reference a post by Cajun, in the You can view the subject below:
Oversized Tires

I was further informed by Matt @ that every 1 (ONE) lb of rotating mass equals approximately 25 lbs. of Stationery Weight (may not be an accurate quote, but close).

For some, the topic of tire & wheel size is somewhat confusing, so I’m going to do reference 2 websites, that I feel will clarify these two topics.

Wheel size and Offset

Tire Size

Now some common sense. If you do run Taller tires, THEN when you first startup, YOU
ARE ALREADY in a HIGHER Gear, so to speak. So you would need reduce your upshift by potentially a HIGHER rated Secondary Spring and perhaps a Higher Engagement Primary Spring to attempt to HOLD you down in Gearing until you got that
SUCKER rollin. The same basic changes would also be necessary for HEAVY rims as well as tires.

This topic is totally open for discussion, so I’m going to take the easy way out, NEXT.
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As most already know, Clutch kits typically come in 2 packages (0-3000’ Elevation, Above 3000’ Elevation). The reason for this is that your motor will make less power in higher elevations due to the air being less dense. In order for an engine to run properly, you gotta have O2 (air), so the kits have various Flyweight & Spring Combinations to insure that the motor will run in the correct RPM range for these higher elevations.
In the Starting Clutch Overview, Cajun(forum moderator for atvquadsquad) posted:

QUOTE (The general rule of thumb for power losses at altitude are 3% for every thousand feet above sea level. There’s a bit more to it than that, but the rule gives a general idea of power loss. So, if I were to take my quad to 10,000ft., I can expect about an approximate 30% horsepower and torque loss. Because I’m clutched for sea level, my flylweights will be too heavy and I’ll never reach peak rpm. Polaris has some general recommendations for weights at altitudes for quads. I would be surprised if they don’t have similar recommendations for RZRs and Rangers. If I were to take my quad to Colorado, I would probably reduce my flyweights in anticipation of altitude. If you intend to clutch for your highest altitude, you will be bouncing off the rev limiter at lower altitudes. A compromise would be in order.)

I feel his statement pretty much SAYS IT ALL in regards to altitude, so I’ll say,

"THANK YOU", Cajun.

Most of the Newer GPS units provide or indicate what elevation you are at, But if you don’t have a GPS or your unit does not provide that info, you can go to:
EarthTools - Find places, latitude/longitude, sunrise/sunset, elevation, local time and time zones
to find your elevation as well as other useful bits of info, like sunrise/sunset times, local time & time zone, location of places, etc.

Has anyone every noticed that on some particular days, the machine seems to be performing better than others. YES, well this is also attributable to the outside temperature and humidity. As some may already know and for others, you have a Sensor
called the TBAP (short for temperature, barometric air pressure) that is located NORMALLY in the rubber boot between the air box and the throttle body. This little guys samples the air flowing into the engine and sends signals to the ECU (computer brain) on the unit. The ECU has been programmed with various fuel & timing adjustments (maps) where the Polaris Engineers strive to get the maximum performance out of a particular engine. For the most part, we have no or little control of these many,many map combinations, however I felt that small FACTOID would provide a little bit more information explaining good or lackluster performance.

Engine Mods/Turbos/Superchargers

Since the Polaris Engineers developed/tested their clutch setups for a particular HP as well as RPM range, if you do anything to alter or change your peak RPM, you will need to change your Clutching setup. The very basic reasoning is that you have increased torque,HP, RPM’s and these Faster Goodies are NOT available due to a power loss UNLESS you change your Clutching to recapture those loses. This particular loss is very closely kin to the same situation that you faced by going to larger/more aggressive tires.

We discussed earlier the term Backshifting, but I feel this is such an important topic, that a quick refresher course would be appropriate. The term Backshift refers to the Clutching systems ability to KEEP the engine in its peak powerband, despite the type of riding that you are doing. When you are ON/OFF the throttle, so to speak, you want a STRONG Backshift which give you a quick,crisp throttle response. Excellent example, would be if you are racing and go through a curve, you want your motor to jump right back to that peak RPM level (sweet spot) in the powerband, so you are Pulling hard just as soon as you hit the throttle. Poor Backshifting is typically seen if you have a sluggish or lag in the throttle.

There is a pretty deceit write up discussing, what you should consider when changing your clutch setup. The article was written by Randy Nouis in SnowTech Magazine and redone in, you can view it below:
Inside Clutch Tuning: Tune the Primary or the Secondary?
Although some of the subject matter has already been covered, it’s really a good refresher course in clutching basics.

I always attempt to provide or give credit to articles,writeup,pictures, etc., however the flowchart below was in my notes and since I suffer from CRS, couldn’t recall where it came from. However, I felt that it was a GOOD overall pictorial view of what CLUTCHING IS and WHAT IT’S ALL ABOUT.


Well, I guess that this pretty much WRAPS it ALL up, and ALL I want to say is:






Honestly, I’d like to thank EVERYONE that has encouraged and supported the writing of these segments. As I’ve said in the past, I’ve acted solely as a Conductor attempting to keep this CLUTCHING train on the tracks, much like a Director in a movie AND ALL YOU GUYS ARE THE ACTORS. Many contributing thoughts, ideas, concepts as well as a number of published articles and writeups. THANK YOU One and All. I have gotten much more educated than I was before, due to attempting to organize topics in a fashion that I sincerely HOPE each and everyone was able to glean some new or useful information.

Thanks Again BUDDIES.

Your Backyard Clutch Tester
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