Some accessories that claim to be improvements over factory parts are little more than “farkles” that make your motorcycle look good but offer limited results. That’s not the case with the Magura Hymec hydraulic clutch replacement kit I installed on my 2014 Triumph Tiger 800 XCx.
As it turns out, I used a Magura product on my very first motorcycle in 1975, installing one of its plastic clutch levers after repeatedly breaking the metal ones on my Yamaha CT175. The Magura lever lasted for many years even back then. Magura is a German company that’s been around since 1893, manufacturing a variety of handlebars and clutch and brake components for motorcycles and bicycles.
The factory clutch on the Tiger 800 XCx is cable actuated and provides adequate feedback and control, but it has a very narrow friction zone that makes taking off from traffic lights and tight off-road situations more challenging than they should be. The Tiger is very nicely sorted in terms of engine performance, suspension, brakes and electronics. Adding a hydraulic clutch kit would hopefully add a bit more finesse to the overall package.
The Hymec kit is preassembled, filled, bled and ready to go. The package includes the lever, switch, perch, master cylinder, hose, slave cylinder and slave cylinder perch, as well as additional mineral oil (which is used instead of the brake fluid that’s used in many other hydraulic clutches). Once unpacked, the system seemed a bit lighter than the OEM cable clutch and components. Installation took about 45 minutes including wiring up the new switch. According to Magura, it’s critically important to have 4-6mm of free play at the slave cylinder for proper clutch disengagement and engagement. To measure free play, hook up the slave cylinder to the clutch actuator arm, pull the slave cylinder as far away from the mount as possible by hand and measure the gap between the slave and mount. If you need less free play, tighten the bolt on the threaded end that seats against the cable engine mount until you reach 4-6mm.
Once the kit was installed, clutch operation immediately felt much smoother and lighter, with a wider friction zone that makes departures from a stop much easier. This makes the bike more enjoyable to ride and provides additional confidence in tight off-road situations. Also, customer support from Magura was spot-on, with immediate responsiveness when I had a problem with the clutch switch. A new one was in my mailbox within three days.
Overall, I highly recommend Magura’s Hymec hydraulic clutch kit for the Triumph Tiger 800 XCx, which retails for $299. See the website for the full application range, which includes models from BMW, Harley-Davidson, Honda, Kawasaki, Suzuki, Triumph and Yamaha.
For more information, see your dealer or visit magura.com.