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Discussion Starter #1
While going down a steep hill the gator sounds and runs great with the foot on the gas pedal however as soon as you release and the gator starts to coast down seemingly out of gear there is a loud squealing and burning smell. As soon as you push down the gas again it seems to re-engage in gear and everything goes back to normal...What is this? Sorry for the newbie question... I have fixed a lot on this unit but I haven't messed with the clutch yet... Any help is greatly appreciated.
 

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The clutch should freewheel and thus act like it is in neutral, but the belt shouldn't be smoking or smell like it. It's likely the primary isn't opening up completely or belt spacing is off (not certain if this is possible thought).

If you're uncertain how the cvt works, I suggest you watch a few videos that show how they open and close. This will help your understanding and perhaps help in diagnosing what is wrong.
 

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When the drive or primary clutch gets below a certain RPM it will disengage allowing it to freewheel, by pressing the gas pedal this increases the RPM's allowing it to engage and hold you back sort of like an engine brake, using the brake in combination with the gas should keep it engaged, heard it called the Texas 2 step. As for the noise and smell, that's a tough one, could be the belt spinning faster then the primary is turning but they are usually not that tight.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the responses! I will need to watch some videos on how the clutch works a bit more... I have been texas 2 steppin' it and that works fine but there is definitely something wrong as I shouldn't have to do that. Otherwise I have brought this thing back from dead and it runs great. Last item will be the clutch. Thanks again!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Looks like its a common and non fixable issue... the squeeling at least... not sure about the smell. I see a few discussions about it on another JD forum.

"No, you are not alone. The sound occurs when the Gator starts "free-wheeling": After x # of seconds with your foot off the gas, the engine braking is disabled and you start coasting - that's when you hear the squeal. It is an annoying sound, I agree. Some days like fingernails on the chalkboard. Cannot understand why that "feature" was included. If there was a way to disable it, I would do it in a heartbeat. My property is sloped, so when I don't want to hear the free-wheel squeal, I put in low range and just keep a slight pressure on the gas to force the engine braking."
 

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If you want engine braking you'll either have to do the 2 step or buy a different clutch setup which I'm not sure you can with a gator.
 

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My 825 does the same but no burning smell. Don’t seem to bother anything as far as I know. It feels as if the clutch is disengaged and is rolling free.
 
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