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Discussion Starter #1
I just bought a 79 sportster for a first bike and I was wondering if these bikes are really as big of a pain as people say and are parts easy to come by
 

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Most all parts are available still. Can't help but ask, why such an old bike as a first bike? Hope you're able to do repairs and maintenance yourself. Enjoy!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
The price was right and I looked at others I can't afford an extremely new bike and my father in law owned it most of its life so it has been well maintained
 

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Looks pretty nice. Assuming it's been taken care of and if you have a decent carb and ignition system on it, it shouldn't be much more trouble than an Evo. You'll have to adjust and oil the rear chain, and the valves will need adjustment from time to time, but that's easy. Parts availability shouldn't be a problem, but there isn't as much aftermarket/custom stuff available for them any more. I've been riding an '83 Ironhead for 23 years now, and it's no big deal - I trust it enough to ride it anywhere.
 

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Looks like a cream-puff in the photo's . If the mechanicals are in as good of shape as the outside of the bike , I'd say you did good . Just install a maintenance free O-RING chain & a late model ignition ( also maintenance free ) with a sealed battery and enjoy . To me the old shovelhead engines look better than even the EVO's .

Ride Safe & Ride Righteous !
 

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That's a sharp ride you've got there Mv7fd. Pretty much a classic if you ask me.

Like BobF, 83XLX, and others say, most parts are still available. They can be expensive if new, but they're out there.

I'll also strongly suggest that you take The Road's sound advice on the late model electronic ignition upgrade.

This and modern lube oils will do much to improve the reliability over what it was back in the day (proper maintenance intervals are, of course, a must)

Btw, a factory service manual is highly recommended.
 

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Hey Mv7fd, do you have a picture of the other side of the bike?
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I'm 6 foot it's a tad small but it'll work for a first bike. I'll get a bigger bike one day
 

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Looks like a nice, unmolested bike. Do you have the front fender for it? I notice it has the '82-'84 style oil filter added on the front motor mount, and the instruments and controls look newer, too. Resist the urge to "customize" it - keep it fairly stock and it will be worth a lot more if/when you decide to sell it.

BTW, you can switch sides with the speedo and tach and the cable won't have to cross the headlight.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Yes I have the front fender and oil tank cover they need some touch up and I have the original gauges everything that was changed on the bike was done a heck of a long time ago lol
 

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Nice Nice Nice!!!!
I love it. The XL series from the 70's are so classic.

Hey XLX... Is that oil cooler stock?
Anyone know?
 

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Don't really want to rain on your parade but my old 76 ironhead chopper was a money pit. I ended up rebuilding just about everything and I sold it before I had to rebuild the things I didn't rebuild the first time. Sportys tend to be riden hard and I guess I got mine after it was. The good thing about them is if they are done right they run great and are one of the best looking engines. They do require a watchful eye as to maintenance. For some reason I really miss that bike. Hope you have better luck with yours.
 

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Don't really want to rain on your parade but my old 76 ironhead chopper was a money pit. I ended up rebuilding just about everything and I sold it before I had to rebuild the things I didn't rebuild the first time. Sportys tend to be riden hard and I guess I got mine after it was. The good thing about them is if they are done right they run great and are one of the best looking engines. They do require a watchful eye as to maintenance. For some reason I really miss that bike. Hope you have better luck with yours.
You're right, a lot of old Ironheads have been neglected and abused over the years. If this one has been taken care of and not abused, it shouldn't be a money pit. I've been riding my '83 for 23 years with minimal drama (bought it used in 1990). I've had to put a new clutch in it and had to replace a cracked piston (my fault for running too much advance), and that's about it other than general maintenance items. I maintain it and don't "ride it like I stole it", though...:rollin

 

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You're right, a lot of old Ironheads have been neglected and abused over the years. If this one has been taken care of and not abused, it shouldn't be a money pit. I've been riding my '83 for 23 years with minimal drama (bought it used in 1990). I've had to put a new clutch in it and had to replace a cracked piston (my fault for running too much advance), and that's about it other than general maintenance items. I maintain it and don't "ride it like I stole it", though...:rollin

That is actually quite impressive for a 30 yr old bike.
 
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