new to HD

Discussion in 'Sportster Models' started by Jax04, Sep 6, 2011.

  1. Jax04

    Jax04 New Member

    I am reading some how to's on Oil change and I am getting mixed signals on what to change on my bike. I have a 04 Sportster 1200c and some say there are three oils to change and some say two. So which is it. I know there is the engine and filter with Mobil Vtwin 20/50 then there is the Primary with Spectro 6 gear, but what is the trans oil and where do you drain and fill it or does the sportster not have the trans oil separate from the engine oil?
  2. glider

    glider Veteran Member

    Engine is one oil and the trans and primary share oil.

    Check the self help forum for many tips on changing oil etc.
  3. dbmg

    dbmg Experienced Member

  4. fin_676

    fin_676 Experienced Member Staff Member Moderator Contributor

    The sportster has 2 places for oil engine oil in the oil tank on the right side and transmission which is a shared oil between the primary and the gearbox my personal preference is to run HD formula+ in the transmission
    it needs to be a specific oil as it has to look after the actions of the gearbox and a wet multi plate clutch
    It would be a good idea to invest in a service manual for your bike it will give you a lot of information suitable for your bike

  5. Breeze3at

    Breeze3at Well-Known Member

    Hi Jax; The HD terminology can be confusing to a new owner. Harley makes 3 different engines.

    Big Twins are Models that start with F (FL/FX) like Dyna's, Softails, etc. Often Big Twins are referred to by the cubic inches of the engine (80,88,96,103, etc.) Big twins have separate engine and transmissions, connected by a sealed primary case, thus the need for 3 different (usually) oils.

    are Models that start with X. Sportsters are usually referred to by 883 or 1200 cubic centimeters of engine. Sportsters have integral cases, meaning the engine and transmission share one common case. Xl's transmissions and primary's are open to each other and share the same oil. Engine has it's own.

    Vrods are models that start with V, and are water cooled. They are fast and that is everything I know about Vrods. No disrespect, I just haven't been exposed to Vrods.

    NEWHD74FAN Experienced Member Retired Moderators

    Changing motor oil and primary/clutch/tranny gear oil is easy. The trick is to use proper draining windage trays (using cut plastic bottle or aluminum foil fabricated ones are cheap and not as messy." The other trick is to not OVERFILL either hole. Use 2.5 quarts of 100% Synthetic motor oil to start (Mobil 1 V-Twin is fine here) and only 1 quart of primary gear oil (Formula + or dino gear lube with no friction modifiers is good here) and you will be fine. Putting too much means motor oil will drip out when hot and parked on a slight incline, and shifting and finding neutral will be harder if too much gear oil goes in. These tid bits are (were) found through trial and error, and you really don't need to go through all that. Having the proper oil filter wrench, and proper fitting hand tools is a BIG plus also. :D
  7. Jax04

    Jax04 New Member

    Thanks everyone for your response. I was thinking there were only two but then when I seen others talking about three I got worried that I may miss something. I will pick up a service manual as soon as I can.