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New Clutch Test - All Revved Up

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We Test a Dalton Clutch Kit on the Polaris RZR 570
Written By: 
Wayne Davis

2013.polaris.rzr570.blue.front.riding.over-rocks.JPGWith all the high horsepower machines in the garage, you would think our diminutive Polaris RZR 570 would be feeling a little ignored and lonely, hardly ever getting out to the trail. Almost the complete opposite is true. On nearly every ride and adventure, regardless of how long or short the trip, the RZR 570 is at the top of our list and we sometimes force ourselves to leave it in the garage and take another machine instead. The RZR 570 is that much fun.

RZR 570 BASE

We like pretty much everything about the Polaris RZR 570. It looks great, it’s extremely nimble, and it’s an absolute blast to drive. There are always improvements that can be made though, and since the RZR 570 is a no-frills machine from the factory, it’s the perfect base for a project. On most build projects, we’ll go for suspension work first, but we were anxious to give a new DALTON CLUTCH kit for the 570 a try.

Most Side x Sides come with CVT style transmissions. Both the factories and riders love them for their simplicity--slide the gear selector into forward or reverse, point it where you want to go and hit the throttle. While that can be an advantage in many situations, one drawback is that you get what the factory determines are the optimum transmission preset engagement points. However, depending on the design, there are several ways to improve that. Changing the clutch weights, rollers, or the helix can alter how a clutch performs, but the easiest and most cost-effective way is to change the springs.vendor.2013.dalton.polaris-rzr570.clutch-kit.instructions.JPG

DALTON DESIGN

DALTON has been building high quality CVT clutch components for many years. They’re known for building reliable products that work, and they won’t sell a kit just to make the sale. In fact, we’ve asked for clutch kits in the past for some very popular models, but Dale Toole (the main man at Dalton) wouldn’t sell us one. Dale says he won’t develop a clutch kit unless he can definitely make an improvement over the factory system, and we really appreciate his integrity.

Like all OEM’s, Polaris sometimes switches things up with different parts between model years, and even though most RZR 570’s appear identical, there are several clutch configurations you might find. The standard 2013 570 is different from the 2012 model and comes with what Polaris refers to as a BOSS (Built On Secondary Shaft) secondary clutch. The 570 EPS LE version comes with a different secondary clutch and a different primary as well for EBS (engine braking) function. It’s important to know your exact model number to order the correct clutch kit.


The DALTON clutch kit for our RZR 570 consists of longer springs, different flyweights and weight inserts, and even a tool to help install it. Thankfully, it also has a GREAT set of detailed instructions making the job super easy. If you can change a filter, you can change this clutch. Here is our step by step process to new found power.vendor.2013.dalton.polaris-rzr570.clutch-kit.close-up.cvt-cover.JPG

1. We always start with a clean machine. It’s so much easier working without dirt falling into everything. After you’ve given your machine a good bath, remove the CVT cover on the left side of the engine.

2: Blow out the dust from both the cover and the CVT with an air hose. A clean clutch works much better.

3: Remove the 6 bolts holding on the primary shaft cover and the center bolt holding the clutch to the shaft.

4: Pull out the stock flyweights and spring.

5: Insert the Dalton spring and flyweights and flyweight inserts.

6: Reinstall the belt in the same direction it came off.

7: Reinstall the shaft cover and 6 bolts.

8: Reinstall CVT cover.

The total time for us to make the switch was about a half hour, and about the only way for Dalton to make it any easier would be to stop by your garage and do it for you.

TO THE TRAILS

Dalton was going to have a hard time improving on the RZR 570 clutch. Depending on the terrain, the stock clutch is quite good already, but that changes in a hurry with bigger tires or loose, sandy trails. With the Dalton kit installed and the standard flyweights put in, the Dalton clutch reacted a little more aggressively on hard surface trails, but when we got into loose sand, it began to shine. What would normally cause our little 570 engine to shudder at trying to drag our happy but not necessarily Olympic class carcasses around was no longer a problem -thanks to the Dalton kit. Through both wet and dry sand, the RZR now pulled with much more top end authority, which is exactly what it was intended to do. Larger tires present a similar heavier load and more drag and the kit brings back the loss from installing larger tires. With only a 570cc engine behind you though, don’t go too crazy with tire size or nothing short of second cylinder will help.

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The DALTON clutch kit helps the motor stay firmly in the powerband and gets the power to the ground, which is exactly what we wanted. It retains all the great traits it had before, but now it’s a more inspiring ride. Changing the clutch springs and flyweights is a simple modification that can make just about any CVT-equipped machine even better. If you change tire size or terrain again, the "Quick Adjust" flyweights can be changed easily without having to remove the clutch. The Dalton clutch has taken our overachieving Polaris RZR 570 and made it even more fun. Great job Dalton!

CLUTCH PERFORMANCE TIPS

There are a few tips and tricks that can help you get maximum performance from your machine’s clutch. The most important is to always keep it clean and dry, but here are a couple others as well.

1: Typically when a clutch is taken out or changes are made, the bushings, belt and clutch halves can be a little grabby when reinstalled, and for the first couple of rides, you can expect them to react a little abruptly as they settle in. To get maximum power, the belt should ride all the way up to the top of the sheave for full shift out. A quick way to check if your machine is shifting all the way out only requires a Sharpie marker. Draw a few lines on the primary clutch surface extending out from the center shaft all the way to the edge of the sheave. When the belt rides up on the clutch, it will wear the marker off, and after a few top end runs, take the cover back off and see how far up the sheave your belt has been riding. It’s a quick and easy way to tell if your clutch has been shifting all the way out. If the belt is not riding all the way up the sheave at maximum RPM, chances are you need a new belt.vendor.2013.dalton.polaris-rzr570.clutch-kit.close-up.fly-weights.JPG

2: For years, snowmobile riders have been de-glazing the clutch halves with a scouring pad or very fine sanding pad. Basically, you want to remove built-up rubber or grime and give the belt a fresh surface to work against. VERY LIGHTLY and evenly scour the aluminum. Whatever you do, don’t take a disc sander and leave a quarter inch groove in the clutch face.

3. When removing the clutch halves, an impact wrench will spin the nuts off the primary and secondary clutch, but it’s not necessarily a great idea to simply spin them off NASCAR-style. The clutch springs will likely still have pressure and could come off with enough force to give you a moment you won’t soon forget (and the scar to remember it). Back the bolts off about halfway, and then remove slowly.

4. When installing the belt, pay attention to directional arrows on new belts, and reinstall used belts in the same direction they came off.


Dalton Industries Limited

355 Vimy Road,

Truro, Nova Scotia

B2N 4K2 Canada

Phone: (902)-897-3333

www.daltonindustries.com