Primary oil leak behind starter?

Discussion in 'Touring Models' started by sddurbin, May 28, 2010.

  1. sddurbin

    sddurbin Member

    53
    16
    0
    Had my '08 FLHT serviced for my 20,000 mile checkup, and noticed that I've got a small pool of oil on top of my primary cover, just below and behind my starter unit. I can't figure out where it's coming from, and will start by pulling the starter to see if there's a seal or something that may be leaking. Any thoughts and suggestions would be appreciated!

    Also noticed my shifter linkage (ball and socket) is getting loose from wear. Should I get a HD linkage arm, or does someone make a better unit that will last longer than this one? Thanks again, and thanks to all of our veterans for serving our country!

    Scott in IL-'08 FLHT-The Mistress
     
  2. Hoople

    Hoople Account Removed

    7,198
    0
    34
    Can't imagine yours is too different from my 2009, but on the nose of my starter there is an "o" ring that seals the starter to the inner primary cover.

    As for the linkage arm, HD makes an array of beefy links that have stronger joints. ($75 to ~$110) and they are real nice. All the guys I know using them, like them. Looks Stronger than what comes on the bike.
     
  3. HDDon

    HDDon Experienced Member Contributor Retired Moderators

    5,456
    133
    196
    You will have to take off the outer primary cover to remove the jack shaft on the starter to remove the starter. Before you do this run your hand behind the inner primary where the mainshaft exits the transmission and passes thru the drive pulley. If you feel fluid there the transmission seal is leaking. There is also a vent hole at the top of the primary housing and if the primary is overfull you can get fluid out here. as for the linkage Harley makes several styles that have a much better life than the OEM.
     
  4. Hoople

    Hoople Account Removed

    7,198
    0
    34
    Wow, is the FL that much different than a FX. I don't have to loosen or remove a jack shaft to drop my starter. My starter falls out with 2 external allen cap bolts. Also, do I have a primary vent also? I did not ever see anything like that on my 2009 FXDL.
     
  5. sddurbin

    sddurbin Member

    53
    16
    0
    HDDon: According to my service manual, it appears that the starter can be removed externally without removing the outer primary cover and jackshaft.
     
  6. NEWHD74FAN

    NEWHD74FAN Experienced Member Retired Moderators

    8,176
    98
    16
    Yep, you touring guys are lucky, on my Sporty I have to remove a lot of stuff including the primary cover to get at the starter bolts from inside, as well as stuff in the way of the starter "just dropping " out the side...:(
     
  7. HDDon

    HDDon Experienced Member Contributor Retired Moderators

    5,456
    133
    196
    Your right, I haven't taken the starter off my FLTRI. I had to remove the starter from my 94 FLSTC and on it you start on the inside of the primary. I jumped to the conclusion that it was the same for the later touring models. I have chastized myself severly and am currently writing I Will Look In The Manual Before I Post A Response, 1000 times in my head. :small3d007::small3d007:

    I just came back from the shop where I reread "Removing The Starter". Has the model changed from 94 & 05? Both service manuals start with remove the seat and the neg battery cable. The next step is to remove the primary cover so that you can bend the tab on the lockplate away from the head of the jackshaft bolt. Remove the jackshaft bolt and lockplate and thrust washer. All this from the primary side. You then move to the right side to remove the starter. How do the new models hold the pinion gear in place? On my bike the pinion will not pass thru the bearing.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 30, 2010
  8. sddurbin

    sddurbin Member

    53
    16
    0
    Thanks for all the posts and suggestions to my mystery leak. It looks like it may be coming from my Vehicle Speed Sensor (VSS). It located on top of the trans. housing, and could leak oil into pools where I noticed the problem. I'm hoping that it's just a worn o-ring, but will have to pull the starter to get to the sensor cover.
     
  9. larryjmiller

    larryjmiller Junior Member

    448
    26
    0
    STEVE 07
    What's the Fastenal part number?

    I want to make my own unique shifter linkage with some 316 SS polished ot copper tubing slid over the stock rod but I need the heim joints too.
     
  10. hoggy25

    hoggy25 Active Member

    127
    26
    0
    Have you checked to see if there's anyway that the oil might be coming from the transmission vent hose? Just a thought. If the tranny is over filled oil can come out the vent hose. Normally I think the trans vent hose is pointing in the opposite direction but it's worth a check before pulling starter etc.