Does It Ever Get Any Easier?

Discussion in 'General Harley Davidson Topic' started by Dr. Dolittle, Sep 6, 2008.

  1. Dr. Dolittle

    Dr. Dolittle Experienced Member Staff Member Moderator Contributor

    I'm really trying to educate myself more about my bike and do as much maintenance and mods myself as possible. I've never been very mechanical and I knew the learning curve would probably be steep but sometimes I feel like I'm nowhere near the top! Did you folks that are real good at wrenching start out feeling like this?

    I managed to do these with good outcomes:
    1)Oil/tranny oil change
    2)Passenger floorboards
    3)Sundowner seat

    However, when I put my new Clearview windshield on I managed to put a small crack in it when the center screw wasn't lined up perfectly. Hasn't gotten any bigger so I'll live with it for now.

    Today, I spent 3 hours putting on my adjustable backrest and HD midframe air deflectors. Overall it went OK but there was one screw (upper one on the left deflector/backrest adjustment handle) that there was just NO WAY I was going to get in. I tried every tool and every angle I could think of and it just wasn't happening. Having Fred Flintstone hands doesn't help. Anyway, I made sure the lower one was good and tight and I'll live with it the way it is.

    Thanks - I guess I just needed to vent a little. Just so frustrating when a seemingly straightforward project takes all day and then still isn't done 100% according to the instructions.
  2. fishhead

    fishhead Member

    Instructions are open to interpretation. If the task you attempted functions properly only you and your screwdriver know what you did and how you got there.
  3. Davidw2415

    Davidw2415 Senior Member

    I'd like to suggest that you get a smell drill bit and drill a hole at the end of the crack. It might might not sound like something you would want to do and it might not look good, but it will keep the crack from getting longer. Just my 2 cents worth.
  4. Dr. Dolittle

    Dr. Dolittle Experienced Member Staff Member Moderator Contributor

    If you meant a "smelly" drill bit, I've got plenty of those! :D

    I've been watching it real close and it hasn't grown at all. I'll keep your tip in mind though.
  5. Butch

    Butch Active Member

    First, well ok, maybe the second frosty day that hits the wind'er, it will.
  6. Bud White

    Bud White Well-Known Member Retired Moderators

    I cant say if it gets any easier or not .. usually ya have it or ya dont ... not trying to be mean but i have seen guys come to work for us that you just never could bring them up to speed working on stuff.. but book stuff or something non hands on they were excellent

    But if your willing to try your a head above some people who are scared to look at it.. the common stuff like oil change etc should be easier time after time

    My best tips for you is get good tools from the start not the cheap junk .. Proper and Good Quality tools make the job much easier and think though what you want to do before you start if you read the instructions do so a few times till you can visualize it in your mine in a 3d working pic..

    The more forthought you put into it the easier it usually goes.. Also read a book or too on how it works and is put together ..

    Im a repair tech by trade and use pretty much these steps .. If you can understand how it works and parts mate before you start you are way ahead of the game i cant say that enough .. thats how you can tell a good tech where i work .. not how does it come apart anyone can take stuff about but its the guys who ask how does it work what is it doing at this time ..

    Kind of hard to explaine
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2008
  7. Bluesugar

    Bluesugar Member

    good points.....
  8. toad451

    toad451 Member

    I feel your pain Doc. My wife wanted to go for a ride last Saturday and said, "Let's go get the rest of the parts for the sissy bar." So off we went to pick up the parts, I only had the backrest. When we got home and took everything out of the packages, my wife looked at the instructions and said, "You need to take this back and have them put it on. You won't be able to do this." In some cases she is right, I'm not the best at putting things together. I do want to learn how to take care of my bike and do a lot of the maintenance myself though, so I perused the instructions and then went to work with the installation. 3 hours and a trip to Sears for a tool, a borrowed tool from the neighbor and I was finally done. I actually put it on correctly, at least I think so(the wife didn't fall off on the test ride). I have a couple of other things I want to try and do myself as well. We will see how those turn out.
  9. Davidw2415

    Davidw2415 Senior Member

    If your wife didn't fall off you must have got the bolts to tight. Just kidding!
    Spending thre hours to do it youself is better than spending a Hundred bucks to have it done.
  10. gs34

    gs34 Junior Member

    I gotta say, since you aren't trying to do this stuff for a living, you will learn what is within your capabilities and what is not.
    "Does it ever get any easier?" Well, if you have the ability it does, but after 30 some years of doing it every day, it also reaches the point where you don't want to do it anynore!
    When I retired, I vowed I would never pick up another wrench. I lied! :17: