2020 Harley-Davidson Lineup! - Page 2 - VTXOA
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post #11 of 103 (permalink) Old 08-25-2019, 01:04 PM
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Harley's never impressed me, my son rides a Heritage Softail. Besides the cost to buy and the cost to maintain, there is the reliability Also a Softail requires the oil tank and filter change plus a purging process requiring removing lines and cranking the engine. Then there is the transmission. Just my observation.

Neither Softails, Dynas, Touring or Sportsters require a purging procedure. As per the service manual, warm it up, drain it, change the filter, plug it, fill it, ride it. Many Softail owners choose to purge the system, but it is totally unnecessary, and not indicated. Those that do it will argue the point, and if it helps you sleep nights.... but most Softail owners don't do it, dealers and service shops don't do it, Harley does not indicate it. Constant removal of the hard lines will eventually create leaks that will necessitate their own repair. Not worth the trouble IMO.



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Spike you might be right on Honda not helping trip breakdowns. When leaving the motel in the morning, three times in the last 6 long trips, a Harley rider was being left behind while he was waiting for someone to pick up his bike. I felt bad for him as his party pulled away.

Last year when I was filling up a HD rider pulled in filled up and asked me to give him a push when he was going to pull out. His clutch cable failed and it was hard to take off shifting into first. I understood his problem and helped him.

Clearly you are not convinced re: Harley reliability. It's okay, many don't get it, few that don't have ever owned one. I've had mine 2012 RGU since 2014. It has never seen the shop since I've bought it. I've never had any issues requiring repair, beyond normal service. My Honda, OTOH, needed a few parts replaced along with the regular maintenance. Leaky radiator, coolant hoses, fuel pressure regulator, clutch due to weak springs. I will add in one valve adjustment which the Harley does not require. Yes I did all of the work on my own, and enjoyed it, but beyond adding new things to the Harley and regular lubrication and hydraulics flushing, it's all about the ride.


Remember that for many years, Harley sold more bikes in the US than all other bike manufacturers put together. Ergo, odds are that if a bike breaks down, it is, by the laws of probability, more likely to be a Harley than any other single brand. That, and, have you ever noticed how many old Harleys are being ridden? Shovels, Evos and carbed TCs are still common. As these bikes age they are, like any mechanical system, more likely to fail. And, it has been a personal observance that many Harley owners do not know how to prepare for a long trip. That and they fail to see the small "quirks" that creep in as potential system failure points. Like, "It always starts if I choke it, let it crank 3 times and let it sit for 10 seconds, open the throttle and crank it. Never fails." Yeah, never fails until it does. Might be far better to make it so that it starts reliably without a non-standard ritual. And, sometimes things (sensors) just fail. It happens. Harley is rated among the 5 top bike manufacturers for reliability. As I recall, Yamaha is the best. BMW, Triumph, CanAm OTOH are rated among the worst!


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post #12 of 103 (permalink) Old 08-25-2019, 01:27 PM
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What you don't know, and must consider, is this. A LOT of HD owners break open their engine case to upgrade pistons, cams, gears, etc.... Thus making the once reliable engine, not so reliable because it was never meant to run with the parts they just spent to put in it. I remember a lot of my friends when we had sprortbikes and amped up our engines we had a lot of breakdowns with those. Leave the internal engine parts alone and the engine will be fine for thousands of miles if taken care of properly. Break open that case, of any make, and you're asking for trouble
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post #13 of 103 (permalink) Old 08-25-2019, 02:05 PM
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HD =
Half the bike
Double the price
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post #14 of 103 (permalink) Old 08-25-2019, 02:21 PM
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^^^^^^^^^^^^^^


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post #15 of 103 (permalink) Old 08-25-2019, 02:45 PM
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Harkon, I may be wrong about this, watch this to the end. If you don't purge 1/3 of the oil is in there from the last change. My son wasn't that mechanical, so he just paid the price for the oil change.
https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q...1B5E&FORM=VIRE


Spike, I do agree with you on that.

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post #16 of 103 (permalink) Old 08-25-2019, 04:13 PM
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Harkon, I may be wrong about this, watch this to the end. If you don't purge 1/3 of the oil is in there from the last change. My son wasn't that mechanical, so he just paid the price for the oil change.
https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q...1B5E&FORM=VIRE

Spike, I do agree with you on that.
Yup, the discussion is an old one on the Harley boards. There are purge systems available for the touring bikes and dynas as well. If you understand how a dry sump engine works you will understand that there is no way a full liter (quart) is left behind. Not only are you purging, but also flushing to a large degree. I don't know of anyone doing that with their VTX. Do you think it's necessary? No manual I am aware of, states any concern for any residual oil in the system on an oil change. Did you know that in used oil analysis, most engine oil still has substantial life when it's changed? I would not argue the process if one got a new to them bike where the oil was disgustingly dark, but there are bikes where the process is either impossible or difficult. There is rarely, if ever, any concern for those bikes and the "dirt" that is left behind.



Oil threads are full of misinformation and opinion. Synthetic oil is not necessary (and I fully admit to using it myself), engine flushes are not necessary with regular oil/filter changes, any modern oil far exceeds the requirements of the engines specified oil change interval.


The purge process is an extra step, that beyond risking creating another leak really doesn't harm anything. It's benefits are arguable either way. The official service manual makes no mention if it so following that, in my mind, makes it unnecessary. No harm in doing it, no harm in not doing it. The point is do it if you with. There's much made of these things, but seriously, when did you last hear about engine failure due to oil, when the service schedule was adhered to? The answer ... never!


I'll add as well, that the touring bikes / Dynas and the Softail's lubrication systems are very much the same, aside from the location of the oil bag "reservoir". No lubrication issues with the rubber mounted bikes. So why is it a big concern only for Softails?


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post #17 of 103 (permalink) Old 08-25-2019, 04:48 PM
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No purge is needed, you don't get all the oil out of any engine.
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post #18 of 103 (permalink) Old 08-25-2019, 05:08 PM
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No purge is needed, you don't get all the oil out of any engine.
Its not needed nor is flushing good for engine or transmission. Best thing for your engine is timely changes if you have to flush its probably too late. hahahha see what I did there
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post #19 of 103 (permalink) Old 08-25-2019, 05:13 PM
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I happened to be at old fort harley yesterday, just passing time on a rainy saturday. No bikes on the floor when I got there. I found out they were bringing out the new models so I waited a few minutes to see them. From what I saw they have some new colors and some new features such as tpms,a hold,, keeps it from rolling when taking off on an incline, a form of traction control. No I wasn't paying close attention, I was in pain and heavily medicated, that's another post. I like the new colors and I can see the electronic upgrades will appeal to some . The subscription service for the mobile app for security and tpms and gps locater might be a good thing.
post #20 of 103 (permalink) Old 08-25-2019, 06:12 PM
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I happened to be at old fort harley yesterday, just passing time on a rainy saturday. No bikes on the floor when I got there. I found out they were bringing out the new models so I waited a few minutes to see them. From what I saw they have some new colors and some new features such as tpms,a hold,, keeps it from rolling when taking off on an incline, a form of traction control. No I wasn't paying close attention, I was in pain and heavily medicated, that's another post. I like the new colors and I can see the electronic upgrades will appeal to some . The subscription service for the mobile app for security and tpms and gps locater might be a good thing.
I think to some degree all of the new electronics and fluff is to the detriment of marketing. All of this wizz-bang high tech costs money. These bikes already cost enough. I wonder if they offered a stripped down basic model, at a proportionate price, if they might realize that most people don't want to pay extra for a lot of this tech. Unfortunately they make basic models less appealing by making the price dis-proportionate to features. They, of course, want to sell the loaded models.


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