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Discussion Starter #1
Hello everyone,
I finally took my decision and bought the iron new since all used bikes were too expensive for their age.

Since this is my first bike, i have spent the first 2 days riding around the neighborhood until i get used to it and today i took it for a longer ride to the mountains. I'm strictly following the manuals guidelines for breaking in the bike and i have completed now the first 80km so from now on i can rev a bit higher at 3500rpm

These are my first impressions and i need your feedback especially for the first part with neutral gear:

1) although i was warned by the dealership that the bike will be stiff until it breaks in and that gears will be hard to switch, day after day, i find it impossible to engage the neutral gear. I could say that the first days i could do this with some effort but now it's impossible. I try both with started engine and off. I try to move the bike back and forth but nothing. I ended up always leaving 1st gear in but that makes my life difficult since i cannot do simple necessary tasks which require both hands (ie press the remote button to close the garage door). I have to switch off the bike as soon as i get out and then switch on again. That's my biggest issue for now and the dealer assured me that this will go after some time. Why is it getting worse if this is the case

2) during my ride today, i noticed that sometimes, especially downhill, wheyn i had a lowertl gear in (ie 2nd) when i engage the clutch, the display shows momentarily wrong gear (ie 5th) and of course as soon as i select next gear and release clutch, the correct gear appears. Any explanation on that?

3) the 3rd issue is minor and i think it has to do with the geometry of the bike. I had my mirrors flipped by the dealer. The left mirror is fine but the right is impossible to adjust. A large portion of the area is blocked by the controls and i have to slidely bend down to see

4) and finally, the controls, i know its not me and it's how HD is but why? (rhetorical question). Who could reach the horn of flush buttons in case of emergency? Especially wearing gloves. Ergonomics are so bad and I'm wondering, why HD in so many years of history hasn't improved this?

So, those are my first impressions, both as a new rider (not young though) and as a new sportster owner. Comments welcome and appreciated.
 

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ochog1
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I’ll give this a try:

1. Just keep on trying to place it in neutral. Some trannies take a little longer to break in then others, but it will loosen up over time. Biggest problem I have seen is from people who rode UJM’s and are use to that buttery feel if changing gears. Look at your harley like a manual tractor transmission.

2. This little gear lite is just an idiot lite. Don’t worry to much about it. It works well when your in gear and rolling but sometimes when down shifting it just doesn’t have time to engage.

3 and 4. The mirrors upside down are personal preference, yes they look cool bit IMO are not worth a crap if you want to see what’s behind you. Same for the hand controls. Now that it’s your bike set it up for you not what the dealer set it up for. Take out some wrenches loosen up the switches, and bars, sit on your bike and adjust them to what is comfortable for you.

Good luck.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I’ll give this a try:

1. Just keep on trying to place it in neutral. Some trannies take a little longer to break in then others, but it will loosen up over time. Biggest problem I have seen is from people who rode UJM’s and are use to that buttery feel if changing gears. Look at your harley like a manual tractor transmission.

2. This little gear lite is just an idiot lite. Don’t worry to much about it. It works well when your in gear and rolling but sometimes when down shifting it just doesn’t have time to engage.

3 and 4. The mirrors upside down are personal preference, yes they look cool bit IMO are not worth a crap if you want to see what’s behind you. Same for the hand controls. Now that it’s your bike set it up for you not what the dealer set it up for. Take out some wrenches loosen up the switches, and bars, sit on your bike and adjust them to what is comfortable for you.

Good luck.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
Thanks for replying. Mirror flip was my request but can i loosen and adjust the controls?
 

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V-Twin Junkie
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As someone who spent 30+ years on Japanese bikes, I hear you, but as ochog has said, riding a Sporty is a different experience. Me? I'll never go back. The character, sound, camaraderie and pride of owning even a little Harley are head and shoulders above anything I ever experienced riding sport-bikes (or even the VMax I had) from the land of the rising sun. I love the visceral nature of my Sportster. Nothing else has ever satisfied on so many levels.

Neutral is wonky to find. I find it loads better now after installing and adjusting forward controls.

My gear indicator is dead reliable, so perhaps that bears having the dealer look into it.

I can't imagine using the lame horn on these bikes anyway-and besides, you should be thinking far ahead of the proximity in which a horn would be useful. If you are really close, there the argument for revving and a loud exhaust can be made. The Rineharts on mine are crazy loud.

Cheers on your new bike! Enjoy that little bugger!
 

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My wife rides a 2016 Forty-Eight and one of the first things we did was purchase new mirrors so they were above the handlebars instead of below. It was too hard to see with the stock mirrors. The gear indicator only reads when the clutch is out and the transmission is engaged. My 2016 Ultra Limited works the same way.

What type of climate are you riding in . . . I know my bikes seem to shift a little different when it is cold outside vs. the summer months (I live in Minnesota).
 

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I installed Harley-Davidson's Garage Door Opener kit and LOVE it! I back out of the garage, hit the high beam switch, and the garage door closes. I return home, hit the high beam switch, and the garage opens. It also allows me to keep both hands on the handlebars. (We have all kinds of ways to help you spend your money on your bike!)

 

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Discussion Starter #8
I installed Harley-Davidson's Garage Door Opener kit and LOVE it! I back out of the garage, hit the high beam switch, and the garage door closes. I return home, hit the high beam switch, and the garage opens. It also allows me to keep both hands on the handlebars. (We have all kinds of ways to help you spend your money on your bike!)

Yes I've seen this but you have to consider that for us outside the US, all these are 3x the price you get in the US
 

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I carry ours from the house. We have 2 of them
1 truck
2 Bike.
It sits in my cup holder.
The way it sits in there all I do is touch it and we’re good.
Myself I can’t see spending that much $$ to get in the garage.
Or course that’s my opinion


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Hello everyone,
I finally took my decision and bought the iron new since all used bikes were too expensive for their age.

Since this is my first bike, i have spent the first 2 days riding around the neighborhood until i get used to it and today i took it for a longer ride to the mountains. I'm strictly following the manuals guidelines for breaking in the bike and i have completed now the first 80km so from now on i can rev a bit higher at 3500rpm

These are my first impressions and i need your feedback especially for the first part with neutral gear:

1) although i was warned by the dealership that the bike will be stiff until it breaks in and that gears will be hard to switch, day after day, i find it impossible to engage the neutral gear. I could say that the first days i could do this with some effort but now it's impossible. I try both with started engine and off. I try to move the bike back and forth but nothing. I ended up always leaving 1st gear in but that makes my life difficult since i cannot do simple necessary tasks which require both hands (ie press the remote button to close the garage door). I have to switch off the bike as soon as i get out and then switch on again. That's my biggest issue for now and the dealer assured me that this will go after some time. Why is it getting worse if this is the case

2) during my ride today, i noticed that sometimes, especially downhill, wheyn i had a lowertl gear in (ie 2nd) when i engage the clutch, the display shows momentarily wrong gear (ie 5th) and of course as soon as i select next gear and release clutch, the correct gear appears. Any explanation on that?

3) the 3rd issue is minor and i think it has to do with the geometry of the bike. I had my mirrors flipped by the dealer. The left mirror is fine but the right is impossible to adjust. A large portion of the area is blocked by the controls and i have to slidely bend down to see

4) and finally, the controls, i know its not me and it's how HD is but why? (rhetorical question). Who could reach the horn of flush buttons in case of emergency? Especially wearing gloves. Ergonomics are so bad and I'm wondering, why HD in so many years of history hasn't improved this?

So, those are my first impressions, both as a new rider (not young though) and as a new sportster owner. Comments welcome and appreciated.
1. I would check the fluid level in the primary, it may be a little over serviced, which makes finding neutral a bear. (I hope you got a service manual for it...If not, make it your next purchase!). If the fluid level is to high, just pull enough off the top with a syringe, turkey-baster or a brake vacuum. No need to pull the drain plug. The fluid should just touch the bottom edge of the clutch.

1(a). I know the bike is new but check the shift linkage, one of those shifting arms pinch bolts may be loose.

2. The shift indicator only works when the clutch leaver is released.. Both my Sportster and my Ultra same-same.

3. As stated by others...upside down may look better.... BUT!

4. Hmm, I had the exact opposite problem.. I kept hitting the horn when i was trying to hit the left turn indicator..I installed the extended switch rockers on the turn indicators. That solved the issue on both bikes. With those installed, I just "know" the horn button is just above the left turn switch. I can not understand why H.D. doesn't put these on as a factory standard. IMHO, the factory button is just stupid.

Edit: Garage door opener.. I got a new opener that can be operated via a phone app. my phone mounts on my bars.. easy! (I had to replace my door opener because someone forgot to unplug the old one when repairing a cold solder joint) :p Don't Ask! 🙃.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Anther two questions that recently surfaced :
1) although i used to ride once or twice a day, sometimes, i think on the second ride of the day, the engine is cranking to start and it sounds to be struggling hard. It starts at the end but it sounds to struggle as if the battery is empty. I wait 6-10 seconds after switching to run before i start the engine. The bike is now 1 week old with 120km

2) as of today we are locked down for 20 days. How often and for how long should i start the engine in order to maintain the battery and keep from discharging?
 

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2) as of today we are locked down for 20 days. How often and for how long should i start the engine in order to maintain the battery and keep from discharging?
[/QUOTE]

None.
 

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Use a battery tender. Local dealer says it takes 20 minutes of riding to recharge battery after a start.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Use a battery tender. Local dealer says it takes 20 minutes of riding to recharge battery after a start.
Too late for now. I don't have one but i should buy one for the next lockdown. I assume you can leave your battery connected to this charger for the whole duration of the 20 days without any danger of damage?
 

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Too late for now. I don't have one but i should buy one for the next lockdown. I assume you can leave your battery connected to this charger for the whole duration of the 20 days without any danger of damage?
I keep my bikes on the battery tender(s) AT ALL TIMES that they are in the garage. They are "battery tenders" hence, they are designed to keep the battery charged, without "over-charging".
The two most important "tools" to have with a Harley: 1. Factory Service Manual, 2. A Battery tender.

Starting a Harley in order to maintain the batter is counter-productive! If you start it, RIDE it!

i think on the second ride of the day, the engine is cranking to start and it sounds to be struggling hard.
This indicates that the first ride is close to "not far enough"...As in a short ride to work, ore the store.. Keep it on a battery maintainer or tender, this should make this issue disappear.
 

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There is a factory installed battery tender cable located near the bottom under the left battery cover. I routed it to the top outside of the cover on the Sportster. So I don't have to keep fighting with the cover and wearing out the plastic clips on it.
A battery tender easily connects to this. Even though it looks like the wrong size.. It connects perfectly.
783081
 

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Discussion Starter #17
There is a factory installed battery tender cable located near the bottom under the left battery cover. I routed it to the top outside of the cover on the Sportster. So I don't have to keep fighting with the cover and wearing out the plastic clips on it.
A battery tender easily connects to this. Even though it looks like the wrong size.. It connects perfectly.
View attachment 783081
Yes, i know this but i only have a traditional car battery charger with crocodile clips. From what I've read in the manual, i believe it's not suitable even if i find a connector for the croc clips
 

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1) although i was warned by the dealership that the bike will be stiff until it breaks in and that gears will be hard to switch, day after day, i find it impossible to engage the neutral gear. I could say that the first days i could do this with some effort but now it's impossible. I try both with started engine and off. I try to move the bike back and forth but nothing. I ended up always leaving 1st gear in but that makes my life difficult since i cannot do simple necessary tasks which require both hands (ie press the remote button to close the garage door). I have to switch off the bike as soon as i get out and then switch on again. That's my biggest issue for now and the dealer assured me that this will go after some time. Why is it getting worse if this is the case

Check the trans fluid level, and adjust the clutch cable.
 

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Yes, i know this but i only have a traditional car battery charger with crocodile clips. From what I've read in the manual, i believe it's not suitable even if i find a connector for the croc clips
You are correct! A battery charger is NOT a battery tender...and will not work as such.
The point of my previous is: When you buy a "Battery Tender" it comes with the wire harness (for the bike). You don't need to install the one included with the tender. Because MoCo already put one on the bike. That's all i was saying.
 
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