There are a number of possibilities, but most involve something awry within
the clutch itself. Since the solution for any of those is the same (a clutch
job) here are a couple of less aggravating possibilities to check out.
The first is the gearbox lubrication. The smart way to approach that is to
get the gearbox drained and refilled with genuine Honda manual transmission
fluid. It is an inexpensive job or an easy DIY and can make a significant
difference, especially if the level is low now. If the problem is worse when
the engine is cold, this is my top suspect. In any event, it won't hurt and
will likely help. It is also an important routine maintenance item.
The clutch cylinders may be failing. Most often this is heralded by a drop
in the hydraulic clutch reservoir level, so if the fluid level is still at
the full mark you probably don't want to go down that medium-priced path
Within the clutch, the disc could be hanging up instead of floating freely
on the splines, and occasionally other things go wrong. As I say, that still
requires a clutch job... nobody in their right mind pulls a tranny and then
leaves old parts in there. But the important indication is whether the
clutch is actually disengaging completely. When he tries to shift into gear
with the engine running it may be balky. However, once in gear he should be
able to shift freely into neutral and back into gear as much as he wants
without it resisting as long as he holds the clutch down. If that is true,
the clutch is not dragging and the problem is in the gearbox - with the
lubrication being a major part of that. If the problem is synchro wear in
the gearbox (from jamming the tranny into gear) few people feel the cost of
repair is worth it.
One more thing, unrelated but so important it must be asked - was there a
receipt or other record to show the timing belt was changed when due, or at
least isn't overdue? If not, the belt must be changed ASAP to avoid the
heartbreak of a broken timing belt. (I assume the GSR is still a timing belt
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