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Old Goat
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Some owners use a slightly longer filter which holds a small amount more oil. 4 qts. with a new filter.
Im one of them...we all know its 4 quarts...I used 3.9 to make folks feel more comfortable....I been in this rodeo a long time...lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #22 ·
3.9 quarts oil and filter change.
I use the entire 4 qts.
Do you have an owner's manual???
The dipstick is NOT screwed in for oil measurement.
The dipstick sits on top of the threads, with VTX vertical for the measurement.

The oil quantity is the important item, whether the stick is right or wrong.
I follow what's in the owners manual which is basically what it has in the shop manual and what the dipstick indicates is that with three quarts i am right at the high mark. I have never
had an issue with the bike and am hesitant to add another quart but i think i will and maybe check the actual length of the dip stick to see if i got a faulty one. stranger thinks have happened.
 

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So after an oil and filter change with 4 quarts of oil having been put into the engine---
then you straddle the X, hold it vertical and with the stick clean, you drop it in the hole.
You pull it out and examine the stick and if it differs you can file a mark on it.

Some have marked the stick when it is on the kickstand.
A quick and dirty trick that works.

If you had any oil consumption you could have had a problem.
Some twit at the dealership did not put 4 qts oil in my engine when purchased.
I checked the level on the 2nd or 3rd day.
I have done 43 oil-filter changes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #24 ·
So after an oil and filter change with 4 quarts of oil having been put into the engine---
then you straddle the X, hold it vertical and with the stick clean, you drop it in the hole.
You pull it out and examine the stick and if it differs you can file a mark on it.

Some have marked the stick when it is on the kickstand.
A quick and dirty trick that works.

If you had any oil consumption you could have had a problem.
Some twit at the dealership did not put 4 qts oil in my engine when purchased.
I checked the level on the 2nd or 3rd day.
I have done 43 oil-filter changes.
I have thought about doing the file thing both ways but i think i will do it with the bike vertical. Definitely going to put the 4 quarts in just to be safe even though i have never had a problem.
 

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Don't sweat this too much. I have changed hundreds of different VTXs oil over the years. I even had 2 bikes come to me for their 1st oil change and they had 5 qts of oil in the engine. 1 had 6 qts! None of them had oil seeping out the seals or gaskets and once I put the 4 qts in, they ran great just like before.

Oil changes are the most simple of things to do on most any vehicle. Drop out the old, put in new. A little bit over filled is fine, but you should NEVER underfill an engine. That's just bad for the engine, the oil, the temp and the fuel mileage.
 

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Get a friend to straddle the front wheel and help hold the bike upright while draining. Or tie off the handlebars and the back somehow to keep it vertical. You can make a stand easily from 2x4 scraps and a box of long screws, but you will have to buy a lift/ jack to get it in the air. Something you really should consider for the long run.
Or just Trike it!!!! :ROFLMAO:
 

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Here's a screenshot from the shop manual to back up what Hans& Feet already provided. The correct quantity is provided when you:
a. Drain the oil only OR,
b. Drain the oil AND filter OR,
c. Service oil after a complete engine teardown/ disassembly.
Honda provided good tech data for three different scenario's as well as the directions to correctly check oil quantity with the dipstick. I guess if someone chooses to ignore or "reimagine" any of this, it's their bike and their decision. Let us know how it works out.
As for prefilling the oil filter during installation-- You're right. Filters installed vertically are no problem--just fill it up and spin it on. On the X, the filters are installed horizontal and it's intuitive to think that the fresh oil would simply come pouring out while you struggle to spin it on. The practice is sound however and recommended for every engine even if it's just your lawn mower. The technique for horizontal installations is to avoid filling the filter to it's limit. If you've never done this, you'll be surprised how much oil the filter media inside the filter canister will absorb and hold in suspension long enough to spin the filter down to it's seat.
Start by filling a new filter to the top and then watch as the oil level sinks down into the filter. After a minute or two, when you look down the center of the filter, (depending on the filter), there will likely be a little oil visible. If you see oil pooled up at the bottom, hold the filter nearly horizontally and rotate it slowly a few times so the filter media can absorb it and then quickly thread it onto to the engine and down until the oil filter seal seats. Torque as required. No muss no fuss. Oil pressure builds much faster when you fire it up for a leak check and there's reduced risk of internal damage from oil starvation. --My two.

188816
 

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I have an 03 1800s and have owned the bike since 2007 with only 1200 miles on it. When ever I do an oil and filter change I am only able to put in 3 quarts of oil. It's done in the garage so I know the bike is level and the dipstick indicates it's at the proper level. Are the dipsticks for the 1800 and 1300 the same and if not is it possible that the dipstick I have is for the 1300 and not the 1800. I am at 20,000 miles with no issues with the bike just concerned with the oil capacity.

Thank you,
Check the owners manual...
 

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Old Goat
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What I'd like to know here is how Hans&Feet pre-fills and installs a sideways mounted filter......:unsure:
I only prefill mine 1/2....but Han’s is a lot smarter...lol
 
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I only prefill mine 1/2....but Han’s is a lot smarter...lol
I'm just a smidge smarter having read the past half dozen or so comments. Thanks fellas.
 

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I simply use a block of wood (old wheel chock) to place under the kick stand. You can use a 6x6 on the opposite side to make it unlikely to tip over. You are supposed to let the bike idle for 5 minutes (10 minutes if <50 F) and then letting it sit a few minutes before checking and don't goose it while it's idling [2002-2006,Hoda Service Manual VTX1800C/F,pg 3-14]. I found that just cold, the oil level is just below the top of the flat on the dipstick when it is on the upper level mark after running the engine as described above. 2003 VTX1800C, 77,689 miles.
 

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Well have to retract #36. I just checked the oil again today where I got the bike perfectly level by placing two 6x6 timbers under the back of the frame on a level garage floor. When I had the bike "kind of level" the oil was up to the top fill line. When I blocked it there was NO oil on the dip stick. I even just caught the treads to make sure the dip stick wasn't angled. I ended up puting 500ml of oil in, running it for 5 minutes, letting it sit for two minutes then putting another 400 mls in.
 

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It's an inaccurate way to check the oil level, no question. But it's very simple, so simple it's overthought and engineered by various owners over the years and in this thread. Follow these steps and your bike will ALWAYS have the perfect oil amount;

1. Change the oil, dropping the filter and BOTH drain plugs
2. Add new filter and replace drain plugs
3. Pour in 4 quarts of quality oil and start the engine for a minute and shut off allow 5 minutes before checking level



There you go, perfect oil level with 4 qts of oil that the ENGINE requires. However you want to check your level, be it on the sidestand, on a work stand, on a lift or you straddling it, wherever the oil is on the dipstick, that is your FULL mark.
 

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40 posts about engine oil capacity.....😨
Let's take our bike and ride:D
 
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