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Never was quite satisfied with performance of my '08 in 5th & 6th gears. The bike always emits a pounding feeling in these gears, no matter how fast I go; seems to be OK in the lower gears. Reminds me of a lugging engine. I'm thinking it must be a chassis problem, maybe improper tire balance. :confused: Anyone got an idea? Thanks.

gcrod

2008 Cross Bones with 5100 miles and Rush slip-ons.
 

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Seems odd, the engine is a TC96-B so it should be pretty smoothe. I know on my FXDF I don't shift into 5th until around 50 and don't go into 6th until 65.
 

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A 08 Cross Bones and I get the same feeling. Figured it was just the norm for this bike. Also wandering if you had to do anything to your air cleaner or map your system after changing the exhaust. Mine sounds like a frog farting under water. Cant even hear it running over 30 MPH. Some people I have talked to say I need to remap or add a fuel mgt system - as well as change the Air cleaner. Others (web search) say the 08 will adjust OK by itself. Nothing "additional" really needed other than slipping on the new pipes. What say you?
 

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another note

Just one other note - and I know this is going to sound crazy - but maybe it could be the solo seat / spring configuration that makes it feel rough in 5th and 6th. Iv'e had many bikes in the past with a solo seat & springs set up - and they always seem to feel different at speed than do the ones with solid mount seats. This is my first with a 6th gear tranny. May just be me........but.......maybe not.

The newer Harleys also seem more finicky than my old shovel was - as it deals with changing pipes that is. This is actually my first "brand new" bike.
I didn't have to deal with all this stuff regarding changing pipes before....and now - remapping, air cleaners, etc.etc.etc. Harley is best of course - but it seems alot of what is going on out there is all attached to a dollar sign. Does it really have to have all this "stuff" done to it just to throw on some better sounding pipes? By the time I am done doing what "some" say needs to be done, I will have over a grand sunk into some slip on pipes. What gives dude?
 

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Harley is best of course - but it seems alot of what is going on out there is all attached to a dollar sign. Does it really have to have all this "stuff" done to it just to throw on some better sounding pipes? By the time I am done doing what "some" say needs to be done, I will have over a grand sunk into some slip on pipes. What gives dude?[/QUOTE]

It's the EPA and the emissions restrictions driving the ultra-lean running stock engine and the need for remapping and refitting the bikes with pipes and air cleaners to get them to "run right." :( Harley could make it easier, of course, but there is a profit incentive as well. Close to $1,000 for pipes, air cleaner, and fuel management system is not atypical unfortunately. Too bad you cannot resell the stock stuff back to Harley so the next guy can buy it just to take it off and resell. Perhaps a deposit at the time of sale ...?
 

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The newer Harleys also seem more finicky than my old shovel was - as it deals with changing pipes that is. ?

Any EFI bike is going to be more "finicky" than a carb'd bike due to the increased accuracy of FI maps....unless the carb'd bike is already jetted lean.

You are right, though, if you want to mess with non-factory set-up's you are eventually going to have to invest in some sort of EFI controller, be it a piggy back system of some sort (PowerCommander) or a reprogrammer (SERT). The best I have seen is the VFRID for the VROD. It can run 2 wide band O2 sensors and offers a TON of adjustability mated to a very intuitive readout/display. New world order.

Old Skool "bailing wire and vice-grips" mechanics need to update their skills if they want to work with these bikes.....one reason so many people pay so much $$$ to have the dealer tech's (and they are techs) work on what used to be simple mods.

Just my 2 cents worth, and I've been wrong before.
 

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Sounds to me you know what you are talking about custombikemike. I have checked out some info on the Terminal Velocity unit - as I was told it requires no fidling. However - 475.00 is a bit much. The power commander was also mentioned but is not a put on and forget unit. First I have heard anything about a SERT or the VFRID unit. Guess I will have to do more reading up / study on this. Your so right about old skool. Kind of like the old 69 model cars. Lift the hood and all you saw was an engine, carb - air cleaner and pipes. Now - it takes a trained mech. to change a set of plugs. Problem is - I see not much improvements overall as far as gas savings go between back then and now. But - all the changes were not just about gas savings. It's also got to do with reliability. There is a world of difference in ride, reliability, power, etc. between this new bike and my old shovelhead. Even though I had to do alot of back-yard wrenching on my old bike - it lasted a very long time. Still - I would not trade in my new bike for an old style shovel for a million dollars. I love this dang bike!!!! Guess I can even live with the stupid sounding pipes. Just hope some granny does not pull over in front of me because she can't hear me. My problem is I shift by engine sound - and have no tach. This quiet stuff is driving me insane. Lets see - am I in 3rd, 4th, or 5th.....hmmmmmmm. Guess I can downshift to see.....oops! Wrong decision.
 

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SERT - HD's Screaming Eagle Race Tuner.
 

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SI have checked out some info on the Terminal Velocity unit - as I was told it requires no fidling. However - 475.00 is a bit much. .
I'm afraid you are not going to be happy. About the cheapest you are going to get away with that I personally know work is the Power Commander at about $300. The HD SERT (Screaming Eagle Race Tuner) if you can find one on a dealers shelf is gonna set you back about $500, and the real good units used by guys that drag race and so forth like the Daytona Twin Tec will run you upwards of $900. You will also need to find a competent dyno tech coz you will need at least a couple of runs on the dyno to get into the ballpark. After that you need to read, read, read to learn all you can before you go to fiddling with the knobs. The easier way is just to pay the $250 to have it tuned spot on by the dyno guy.

Look out, EFI is a weird addiction. It's like a stereo with 300 knobs....you can't stop fiddling with them.

RJ Rivero is on here every now and then, he knows the whole thing way better than I do. And there is this other guy who knows even more than RJ. Then there is this other dude........you get the idea.

But let me make one thing absolutely clear- This is not a bit different than hopping up your Suzuki Hayabusa or Ducati or any other modern bike. Most guys can take a stock Harley and ride the piss out of it and never have to spend a dime. The rest of us have to have loud pipes so we can sound like that other bad-ass wannabe down the street and that is where it all starts. :D:D:D:ride

Enjoy!
 

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Ok. Now here is the rub. Sampson says a fuel mgt. system is recommended........but not required. So what the heck does that really mean? Are they just trying to sell pipes? All the other brands I have checked into say to add something (Vance Hines, Cobra, etc.) Do you know anyone that has put on sampson pipes and that did not have to mess with the EFI or air cleaner?
 

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Ok. Now here is the rub. Sampson says a fuel mgt. system is recommended........but not required. So what the heck does that really mean? Are they just trying to sell pipes? All the other brands I have checked into say to add something (Vance Hines, Cobra, etc.) Do you know anyone that has put on sampson pipes and that did not have to mess with the EFI or air cleaner?
Harleys are set to run at an AFR of close to 14.6 parts air to one part fuel. This is on the "lean" side of the curve. A free flowing pipe will tend to cause the bike to lean out further. The free-er flowing (and usually loudest) lean the system out more.

Sampson can sell a pipe that is designed such not to lean the bike out much more, thus no need, but a recommendation for a EFI tuner.

Even on a stock Harley you can usually benefit from a tuner to move the AFR on to the fatter side of the curve. This results in a very noticeable gain in grunt and snappier feeling bike from the "seat of the pants" point. Oddly, this usually doesn't show up on the dyno. Most things I have read say that 13.8 is the optimum AFR.
 

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Generally if your not letting more air in the slip on's will not have that much effect that the factory system can't keep up. I myself found a set of earlier softail pipes, cut the baffles out and made them into slip on's. It's louder but not too loud. Stock air filter and the plugs look great. Seems to only become a problem when you let more air in. This is on a 07 duece.
 

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G Stock air filter and the plugs look great. .
So I used to use the plugs as a diagnostic tool also. But I have been reading in the last few years from guys way smarter than me that with the advent of mapped electronic ignition and especially coupled with EFI that it really isn't a good indicator anymore unless something is grossly wrong.

Dunno how true this is.
:ride
 

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So I used to use the plugs as a diagnostic tool also. But I have been reading in the last few years from guys way smarter than me that with the advent of mapped electronic ignition and especially coupled with EFI that it really isn't a good indicator anymore unless something is grossly wrong.

Dunno how true this is.
:ride
I will agree with you to an extent. A lean plug will show lean and a rich plug will still show rich carb or efi.

I guess I can give some of my qualifications not to brag or prove anything but the new systems have some adjustability built in. Anyway I'm Fleet manager for The University of Tulsa. ASE certified master medium/heavy truck master automotive. Been to GM school and Ford school plus electric vehicle and hybrid classes.

Most efi systems can add or subrtact fuel up to about 20% without setting a code for rich or lean. Imo adding a set of slip on's so far away from the o2 sensors and past the balance tube the pcm/ecm already has the capacity to adjust enough and relearn long term and short term fuel trims. Now I do fully believe that adding a free'er flowing a/c at the same time would lean it out enough to need a tune of some type. I am fairly new to Harley's but not bikes. I understand the lean factory set up and will end up modding the bike some more that will make a tune of some type nessacary after all and since I run a tuner on my 4x4 I know the added benefits tweaking can do to power gains.

Anyway sorry to ramble but with all my research I believe a set of slip on's in most cases does not need a tune. Of course take that for what's it's worth if your melts down. LOL
 

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Well - as it turns out - I have been able to speak a bit to a true blooded old time harley rider that owns and opperates his own service and repair shop. On the subject of pipes, air cleaners, and EFI fuel mgt systems, He tells me the new harleys have a much tighter range of "self" adjustment ability as older systems do. As such, whenever adding aftermarket pipes - an EFI fuel mgt. system is a real must - as well as a improved air cleaner system that will allow more air flow. Screeming Eagle pipes "may" be an exception as they still offer some back pressure - and a simple MAP download will work but still may leave the bike running a tad on the lean side (which translates to increased engine opperating temperatures). More out equels more in - and you cant mess with one without screwing up the other. Harleys are precision machines now days and not like a car with EFI. What will work for a newer model car will not work with a harley. So - for my two cents worth (based on information that I feel VERY sure is accurate) - don't mess with the pipes unless you are ready to mess with the intake and fuel controller on an EFI equiped bike. It only makes sense. 17 grand for a perfect motorcycle (except for the sound of the stock pipes) is just too much money to gamble on by taking unecessary chances on. Punching the baffles and doing nothing to the air or fuel system is asking for trouble my friends. Its going to screw up the engine eventually.
 

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Well - as it turns out - I have been able to speak a bit to a true blooded old time harley rider that owns and opperates his own service and repair shop. On the subject of pipes, air cleaners, and EFI fuel mgt systems, He tells me the new harleys have a much tighter range of "self" adjustment ability as older systems do. As such, whenever adding aftermarket pipes - an EFI fuel mgt. system is a real must - as well as a improved air cleaner system that will allow more air flow. Screeming Eagle pipes "may" be an exception as they still offer some back pressure - and a simple MAP download will work but still may leave the bike running a tad on the lean side (which translates to increased engine opperating temperatures). More out equels more in - and you cant mess with one without screwing up the other. Harleys are precision machines now days and not like a car with EFI. What will work for a newer model car will not work with a harley. So - for my two cents worth (based on information that I feel VERY sure is accurate) - don't mess with the pipes unless you are ready to mess with the intake and fuel controller on an EFI equiped bike. It only makes sense. 17 grand for a perfect motorcycle (except for the sound of the stock pipes) is just too much money to gamble on by taking unecessary chances on. Punching the baffles and doing nothing to the air or fuel system is asking for trouble my friends. Its going to screw up the engine eventually.
Sounds like he knows what he's talking about.
 

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Well then I guess it sucks to be me then because I was reading the bafflectomy posts, or whatever they were called, and was preparing to drill holes in my baffles. My bike is FI and I really don't wanna muck it up.
 

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Well then I guess it sucks to be me then because I was reading the bafflectomy posts, or whatever they were called, and was preparing to drill holes in my baffles. My bike is FI and I really don't wanna muck it up.

07 ultra
On your original issue, Sixth gear is useless around town. Barely decent on the interstate at 65mph. I need 2300RPMs or better in
6th before I'm sure I'm not lugging. 5th gear is just a little better.
not much good at 55 or less.
Only thing I'd really want to do is get a decent AFR and run the engine cooler.
 
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