Motobecane variateur problem

Clayton Violand /

When the variatuer system on my 1978 50v mobylette fully rises, or "opens up" (the belt is pushed all the way up), one of the ball bearings between the main clutch piece and the movable pulley cheek (the part that moves horizontally) gets stuck in place. This prevents the movable pulley cheeck from sliding back, thus keeping the variateur in a fully open position even at low speeds or at idling. The only way to remedy this is to repeatedly shake the clutch and hit the moped on the ground until it shakes loose out of its wedged position.

Could this wedging of the ball bearing between the two clutch pieces be a result of a warn out bearing (or bearing housing)? Or perhaps something isn't ajusted correctly? Maybe the movable part of the clutch is opening up too much allowing the ball to wedge itself?

Here is a chart and diagram labeling all of the parts of the variateur for reference.


Re: Motobecane variateur problem

I had this problem when I first started on mopeds. I used to carry a screwdriver with me and stab the stuck bearing to pop it free.

You need to grease the bearings and the area the run around in inside the variator. The best way to do this is to remove the belt and push the sliding variator cheek inwards toward the engine. Put some grease and the end of a screwdriver and spread it onto the flat area by the bearings. Repeat until the whole area is greased up. That should solve all your problems.


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