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I bought this 2012 unit used failing to read the reviews before purchasing. To date I have installed a new clutch, new cables and I still have trouble shifting. I brought it to the local JD dealer and was told they have to shave millimeters from each of the 6 clutch plates due to "occasional use." It's a brand new clutch! My faith in JD is gone. And to any of you that still defend this brand saying it's the idle adjustment, or it needs a correctly clocked clutch, sorry, but once repaired, this JD is gone! Never again.
 

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Well i know iam a john deere mechanic but i will always be honest as most here know.

While i admit that the 550 does not come without problems the clutch issue is mostly something ive read online and never seen a customer with an actually returning problem.

I guess that people who have the returning problem usually end up here looking for help making this the hub for clutch problems.

I guess you just had bad luck, doesnt make your problem any less worse though
 

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Sadly a lot of Gators have inherent hard to shift issues. Numerous threads on this issue with people reporting they have replaced Clutch’s several times only to have the same problems.

JD Clutch Doc has a proven long term solution for hard to shift into and out gear issues.

It’s easy to understand the OP has a bad taste for JD and the inherent clutch problems that have plagued the brand.

For the life of me I can’t understand why the canned response from JD on the Clutch problems is due to “occasional use” of the Gator by the owners. The clutch should release the belt regardless of periodic use.

Looking back at the posts from the OP it looks like he inquired about Clutch issues a little over a year ago (10-2-2018). At that time he was given contact information for JD Clutch Doc and apparently choose to have a new clutch installed rather than have his old clutch hand tuned by the JD Clutch Doc?

Hindsight is always 20/20 which we all have been there.

Hopefully the dealership can repair the clutch without costing an arm and leg?
 

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I get that, and i think its also a difference in customer preference.

We mainly sell the 855d in israel, which is a reliable diesel and anyone who knows a bit about engines know that diesel is not so revvy and more low power grunt.

They are much better on the clutches than the 550 for instance.
Keep in mind that we only sold the 550, 560, ts, tx and rsx gas in my country so our experience on john deere gators with gasoline engines is limited as we currently only sell the 560 and rsx gas

The u.s. market looks like its mainly the gasoline engines so that could explain why we have a lot less problems with clutches on this side of the world.

Now iam no engineer but maybe lightening the clutch weights would help it to stop grabbing so early because that seems like most of the problem.

I have worked on a 550 before with a different unsolveable issue before where i put the weights in a drill press and just whent to town on them making them about 10% lighter and it really helped in the response.
 
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