people on the forum with engine knocks or noises in engines, please read

Discussion in 'Touring Models' started by ron1978, Jan 17, 2010.

  1. ron1978

    ron1978 Active Member

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    I was reading a section in my HD owners manual about hydralic lifters.
    As the book reads: The hydralic lifters are self adjusting. they automatically adjust length to compensate for engine expansion and valve mechanism wear. This keeps the valve mechanism free of lash when the engine is running.
    When starting an engine which has been turned off even for a few minutes, the valve mechanism may be slightly noisy until the hydralic units completely refill with oil. If at any time, the valve mechanism becomes abnormally noisy, other than a short period immediately after engine has started, it is an indication that one or more of the hydralic units may not be functioning properly. Always check the oil supply in the oil tank first since normal circulation of oil through the engine is necessary for proper operation of the hydralic units. If there is oil in the tank, the units may not be functioning properly because of dirt in the oil supply passages leading to the lifter units. See a HD dealer for services.

    just thought i'd add it to the mix, it could be what some of the unexplained noises are.
     
  2. Bud White

    Bud White Well-Known Member Retired Moderators

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    lot of times its not the lifters ya have to find out for sure where its coming from .. primary chains will slap coms come loose and knock .. very few times do you hear it the lifters
     
  3. NEWHD74FAN

    NEWHD74FAN Experienced Member Retired Moderators

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    One thing about engine knocks or noises...the HD V-Twin is somewhat a "rowdy" engine to start off with, with many of the mechanical sounds part of it's tradition. But when it comes to using noise as an indicator of problems, you have to kind of take a step back and try to isolate the location and determine if it truly is "abnormal". While mine does not have "lifter" clatter, it does have a slight whine from the primary chain, but no clatter.

    So it really helps if you maintain your ride, run the best lubes that work for you and make sure you do tightening check of all critical fasteners, especially motor mounts and exhaust system (bafffles, if so equipped) just to be sure. Generally if you do your pre-ride inspection and are used to normal noises you are good. If you wait for noise to get irritating, however, you probably have waited too long.
     
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2010
  4. Chopper

    Chopper Senior Member

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    In the days of pans & shovelheads if you wanted to get laughed out of a bike shop, go in and tell them you had a noise coming from your engine. Harley has come a long ways, but their still not singer sewing machines. Best cure is a set of good sounding pipes. When you ride your bike every day you know all the sounds that come out of it, the trick is when a new noise pops up you never heard before, find it and fix it, nobody knows your bike better then you. You'll know when you have a problem. Just ride and enjoy, don't worry it to death, it's under warranty:)
     
  5. B-1B_Guy

    B-1B_Guy Junior Member

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    And a handful of throttle!
     
  6. fin_676

    fin_676 Experienced Member Staff Member Moderator Contributor

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    I had to replace the lifters on my 93 sportster a couple of years ago for a wee while i tried to convince myself the noise was normal but the 94 sportster was much quieter
    a replacement set of lifters wernt too dear and only took a couple of evenings to get them changed

    Brian
     
  7. NEWHD74FAN

    NEWHD74FAN Experienced Member Retired Moderators

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    Bad lifters or the loud clatter from valve train clearances not being taken up by the normal pump-up of the hydralic lifters is pretty distinct. Fin_676 had the advantage of referencing another bike with similar equipment and certainly is a good reference to go by. Good ears and parallel experiences do come together when troubleshooting for "abnormal" noises, but as Chopper said, your experience knowing your bike does way in heavily, but it is easy to get "used" to sounds if very gradual onset occurs...
     
  8. fin_676

    fin_676 Experienced Member Staff Member Moderator Contributor

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    In my case having previous experience of noisy tappets from triumph, motto guzzi and BMW airhead it sounded like noisy tappets to me but having another similar bike confirmed that the noise was not a normal Harley noise and there are a few normal Harley noises I'm now starting to be able to understand what some of those noises are saying

    Brian