Greetings to all on this forum! My first post here, and I'm really hoping someone has encountered the problem I'm having and knows of a fix. I've spent 5 or 6 hours online today looking for an answer. . . with no luck yet including at this forum. I'm going to add as much info as I can to this post, so please bear with me.
I purchased a used 2006 Foreman S TRX500FM6 from a private party back in November, 2008 with about 5700 miles on it. I bought it with no owners or service manual. I brought it home and rode it a little bit until we got snow, and then stored it in the garage for the winter. Only ran it in the snow once in the late spring, and that basically in the driveway and really just to get a feel for it.
Not long after I bought it, I noticed that the machine sometimes had trouble shifting from Reverse to neutral and, although less often, also had trouble shifting from from 1st to neutral. Felt like the lever would bind up and not complete the motion- like it was "sticking" or something. I tried to not bang on the pedal too hard, and just keep "coaxing" it until it would shift- which it always eventually did.
This past weekend, I had a trailer hooked up to this Foreman and was hauling firewood. I've been doing this off and on for the past several weeks without anything unusual happening. Anyway, the tongue of the trailer got hung up on a little hump in the trail, so I put the ATV in reverse to back up a little and get a run at the incline, then shifted to 1st and pulled forward. I didn't get the trailer free, so I repeated this several times. In the course of trying to free the trailer, I noticed the transmission was starting to act up again and was having trouble getting from Reverse to 1st. In 3 or 4 attempts at "rocking" the trailer free, I had the "sticky lever", trouble- shifting problem, and noticed that once or twice the machine actually appeared to skip neutral and went straight from 1st to Reverse. Finally the machine wound up in 1st and would not shift down to neutral or Reverse again.
I shifted up to 2nd to confirm that the transmission was working at all, and it shifted up just fine but still would not shift back down. I then thought maybe I had to go up to 5th to sort of "realign" things, but once in 5th it still would not shift down. I eventually had to just shut the machine off and take stock.
I then towed the Foreman back to my garage to get a better look at things. I tried rocking it back and forth while shifting down, and after 20 minutes of trying did get it to shift from 5th to 4th. I have not been able to get it to shift down any further, though, and I can't turn the engine over since it's not in neutral. The shift lever is still acting like it should- clicks when pressed and returns to center when released. It's not "dangling" or anything like that. I haven't tried shifting up again, since it took so much work to get it down to 4th in the first place.
I also want to mention that while I was poking around the left side of the motor, I discovered a small rubber hose with a brown or black plastic cup hanging down to the bottom plate. I'm not sure what it is, it smells of gas but does not seem to be leaking it. It comes from the bottom of the first part that the fuel line enters after leaving the gas tank- something mounted high and behind the engine. The plastic cap on the end is a little busted up. Can anyone tell me what that hose is and if it's supposed to connect anywhere? I searched for quite a while and didn't find any obvious connection point.
Obviously my first question is, does anyone know anything about this issue? Is there a way that I'm overlooking to get the machine to shift back to neutral? I would like to be able to turn the engine over to see if the linkage is just stuck or something. Is there a way to get the engine started while it's in gear?
My other question is regarding a service manual. I like to work with Haynes manuals, but they don't seem to offer one that covers this model. I've seen links to other manuals here, but am wondering if Haynes has one since I'm used to working with them.
Any help would be greatly appreciated. I can't seem to find anyone who's seen a Foreman do this, and am starting to worry that there's a major problem here. Thanks in advance. . . .