Need some assistance - 2003 Sportster

Discussion in 'Sportster Models' started by NJsportster, Jan 3, 2011.

  1. NJsportster

    NJsportster New Member

    Hey everyone i just was checking for some info on a XLH Sportster 2003 anniversary model that i have and came across this forum.

    the bike has been sitting in a garage since it was bought, it's never even been used my father was the owner and has been sick on and off since the purchase and never got a chance to use it so it literally has the miles from when it was bought. i know nothing about bikes except it probably needs a battery and from what i read all the fluids need to be changed and possibly some other cleaning up to get it going.

    i'm looking to just sell it instead of having to tow it around to a shop get it up and running and i'd like to sell it but i really can't figure out what its worth. any help on pricing or interest in buying would be greatly appreciated.


  2. NJsportster

    NJsportster New Member

    hey, thanks for the reply but i did check that and i know the price range it's in.

    I'm looking to see if anyone in here has either sold or bought a bike that has been sitting so long and doesn't run...i'm trying to get an idea of what the costs involved are to get it running and how that affects the price range.
  3. NJsportster

    NJsportster New Member

    thank you

    NEWHD74FAN Experienced Member Retired Moderators

    Welcome NJSportster to the HDTalking forum. The condition of the bike...running or non-running directly affects the value of the bike. Add to this, how it was stored...temp controlled garage, winterized (fluids changed prior to not riding for long term storage), bike connected to a "Battery Tender" (type that shuts off when charged, and monitors output voltage)...etc.

    If none of this was done, you should bring it up slowly...pull plugs, spray the cylinders with WD-40, change the old gas in the tank, open the float bowl plug, does anything come out (if nothing could be fuel dried up or worse turned to varnish) if it smells like old varnish, you will need to flush the fueling system, after you get the battery situation sorted out.

    While doing the fueling system service, do charge the battery on a stand alone charger (if it was allowed to fully discharge it may not recover even if it reads 12.6VDC the reserve power likely is lost under heavy starting load to < 9VDC which is not enough to keep the electronic ignition to fire, so the bare minimum is a new H-D battery.

    Now see starter is able to turn the engine over with the plugs out, but with the shell grounded to the bike should spin freely (leave the plugs out so the spark can be seen and less likely to damage ignition coil). Good news is if spark is good, fluids are changed and bike spins up (with no compression) you should be able to put the plugs back in and fire the baby up.

    It may run a little ragged because the old fuel that "was" in there could have left sticky varnish deposits, so you may have to get spray GUM OUT to spray down the throat of the carb to clean things and spray some in the fuel bowl vent as well with the air cleaner off and the engine running, be careful and wear safety glasses, working the throttle to keep engine from dying. Apart from complete take down and through cleaning with a service manual and such this is about as far as you can go if you are new to do it yourself service. Take a look in the Self Help tab to access section for specific information you want to tackle, use the Search tab and type in key words of interest to find threads to help find topics of interest. Good luck and keep us posted on how things go.
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2011
  5. fin_676

    fin_676 Experienced Member Staff Member Moderator Contributor

    When i bought my softail custom it was a non runner and had not been used for 7 years as such i paid about £2000 less than a running bike with current mot and road tax Brought it home on a trailer on the Monday evening after work
    I drained and removed the petrol tank removed the carb stripped and cleaned carb set the float height and re fitted
    i removed a ll electrical connectors and cleaned them using a spray switch cleaner and all fuses (a fair bit of green gunge in places)
    connected battery stolen from my sportster i now had power and was able to turn engine over drained and replaced all fluids
    Filled float bowl with petrol and tried to start woohoo started refitted tank and filled with new petrol (i had removed and cleaned tank strainer when tank was off)
    properly started bike and checked the operation of all electrics i think i had to change 1 bulb
    front brake no fluid but was a new aftermarket calliper filled with fluid and eventually got it bled
    went round the rest of the bike checking the fasteners found that the seat was not secure some fancy fitting had been used to hold the seat down and was missing part of it i couldn't get a good enough grip to get it undone so had to remove the rear fender and put the fitting in the bench vice and turned the rear fender off it
    re fit rear fender all now good i thought
    Saturday 0900 depart for booked mot inspection 30 miles away got about 15 miles and heard a lot of racket from rear left (belt guard loose) removed belt guard and stuffed it down the front of my jacket
    got to mot inspection but failed because the numberplate was wrong mechanic did a quick phone call and nipped out 5 mins later back with correct pattern numberplate passed mot woohoo
    rode home post had delivered insurance documents got to post office with insurance and mot and got my tax disc just at closing time for the post office

  6. NJsportster

    NJsportster New Member

    thanks for all the advice i'll hopefully have it running tomorrow
  7. Painter61

    Painter61 Member

    Your on the right track change the fluids oils gas put battery on trickle charge try to drain tank run some kind of cleaner through it I use on my bike a product called sea foam you can puty the whole bottle in the tank nad take a look at your plugs also