From left: William A. Davidson, Walter Davidson, Sr.
Lubricants are a huge topic of debate in the V-Twin world, often focused on a simple question, "Is it the best way to follow the dealer and put a motor oil in my engine, transmission, and primary case, when I could get the correct product for each application?
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Most experts and educated enthusiasts will tell you not to use a motor oil in all three compartments. Just because the dealership can manage its inventory more easily with one oil type from the factory doesn't make this one product the best choice for your bike.
Using a higher-quality, fully-synthetic 20W50 motor oil, a proper synthetic gear oil for the transmission, and a specific synthetic primary case gear oil optimized for the clutch and chain makes more sense for most motorcyclists looking to protect their investment and enjoy these bikes to the fullest.
This is the main drive gear inside the five-speed transmission case on a stock Big Twin with about 70, miles. All of the power goes from the engine to the transmission and through to the rear wheel through this gear.
Here you see blue - the sign of high heat - on the gear and wear in the center of the teeth—this bike has been running Syn 3.
Why is it wrong to just use motor oil in the transmission? Simply put, motor oils contain additives specific to keeping contaminants in suspension. The same goes for the primary case. It is safe to say that the problem with a compromise is that can't do any one job really well.
We are very proud of our motor oils, but Red Line's unique product known as "ShockProof" is truly a game-changer in terms of its effectiveness in a V-Twin transmission.
The same product is now packaged as V-Twin Transmission Oil. By the way, it's the same fluid used in the differential of the world's best Top Fuel Dragsters. Acting like liquid grease, this famous pink gear oil contains a suspension of solid microscopic particles as an extreme pressure agent—its unique solid dispersion cushions gear teeth to help prevent tooth wear and allows the use of lower viscosities.
ShockProof gear oils also cling extremely well to metal, surely a big part of its noise dampening ability and wear control. The early stock V-Twin gearboxes are not exactly famous for their smooth shifting or quiet operation! That shifting clunk at the stoplight is gone after using our V-Twin Transmission oil, verified by the massive, unsolicited comments on the Internet's most popular V-Twin sites.
Here is that same Big Twin with 70, miles, a five-speed bike. See how the middle gear has wear down the center from the shifter forks? When the gear wears, it causes premature wear to the shift forks--they're hurting each other.
This is what causes the rough or missed shifts and our V-Twin Trans Oil helps to fight this, big time. However, the oil cannot prevent everything. Lugging your bike, especially a newer model, causes both noise and wear in the transmission.
Given that the inch motor is judged by many to be under-powered when matched to its a relatively-tall 2. You shouldn't have to go 90mph in 6th to avoid lugging, but is sure is fun! Aftermarket gurus point out that this is improved in the latest bikes by Harley-Davidson's move to a inch engine and a more aggressive 2.
In the stock H-D 5-speed transmissions from to , experts report that main drive bearing races have wear issues and were machined with wide clearances that combine with its heavy shifter drum for a clunky shift. Aftermarket transmissions for Evos like Baker, Jim's and others, have run very successfully on our ShockProof fluids.
Many of these companies are customers.
The primary case on most American V-Twins is a separate compartment with an independent oil bath. It houses components like the clutch, primary chain, and starter ring gear. Though you don't see the rotor, it's also in the bath Remember that ShockProof is designed for wet-sump applications only, you don't want to run it through pumps, coolers, or filters.
If you see how it is attracted to your gears, imagine how it could stick to the inside of a small hose that sees little pump pressure.
Hal's have a lot of experience modifying them for drag racing, road racing, and street bikes, too. Owners of V-Rods or the liquid-cooled Buells like the late, great R need to think about using the right motor oil to keep control heat, clutch wear and slippage, and gear wear. Unlike their traditional V-Twin cousins, these engines use one oil bath of 10W40, important to curtail wear on the small end of the rod and wrist pin.
Rob Schopf from Hal's reminds us that they prepped many 5-speeds in Buells and for road racing, spotting accelerated wear on the main drive gear and the 5th gear on the countershaft. Rob says, "If the fluid fixed this on the race bikes, it should keep the street-ridden bikes going for quite some time.
Hal's reminds that the biggest performance gains comes from freeing up drag and resistance will free up power—ShockProof gear oils have the lowest coefficient of friction of anything we blend and more than most on the market.
It's one step of many details to make sure your bike runs at its best.
|Hiflofiltro Harley Davidson Oil Filter||Future Subject Front Fork Info The front forks on most Sportster models consists of two tubes - A slider tube that is mounted in the triple-trees and a lower leg tube into which the slider tube compresses. Because the damper tube is attached to the lower leg, the length of the damper tube determines the amount of 'travel' the slider tube has within the lower leg.|
|Fork (per side)||Sportster 48 special For riders who want to take their bikes farther, a set of saddlebags will help strap down enough luggage to make it worthwhile.|
The latest Sportster examples are much improved in the gearbox department, as they no longer puff oil out the breathers.
They'd better be, as its hard to check the transmission wear in later bikes—the "trap door" which you used for access is no longer around, so you have to split the cases to see inside. Always remember to warm up your bike before draining or changing the gear oil, since that ensures that you get the most complete flush out of the transmission.
MTL features the balanced friction you would need to make a synchronized shift in a car—this lack of slipperiness is a great match to a wet clutch like in a V-Twin. This product's balanced friction and light viscosity provides excellent clutch operation with low drag for reduced power losses—the fluid is a 70W80 GL-4 gear oil, but it features the stable ester base stocks that ensure consistent film strength over a wide range of temperatures.
Simply put: Don't lug your bike if you want to keep the primary chain and clutch in order. In , the inch engines started coming with a spring-loaded, automatic chain tensioner.