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I have recently ordered a new 09 flhr, delivery March 09. Can I order it with synthetic oil or will they just drain it and change it and charge me for it? Seems like a waste of good oil.
If I can’t just order it with synthetic what would be the problem of changing to synthetic on the first oil change? Less waste. Anybody done this?
 

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I changed to 20w50 Amsoil synthetic at 1,600k in motor and primary and stayed with a 80w90 for the tranny.
 

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STAND AND FIGHT!
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...at 1,600k in motor...
GEEZ- that's amazing, I don't even think Greyhound busses have that many miles on 'em.

Location: Kelowna,BC
...uh...nevermind...
 

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COB
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GEEZ- that's amazing, I don't even think Greyhound busses have that many miles on 'em.
:rofl: Nathan you crack me up.

As far as synthetic goes, HD puts Syn3 in their Screaming Eagle bikes in the factory. I think maybe the ol break in bugaboo might be outdated with modern bikes. But I'm old, and change is bad, so I will still go two oil changes before any new fangled shit goes down like synthetic or Slick 50 or any of the stuff you whippersnappers use.
 

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As far as synthetic goes, HD puts Syn3 in their Screaming Eagle bikes in the factory.
Yeah, but Syn3 is a semi-synthetic, not a full syn.

That said, major car manufacturers are using full syn out of the factory.
 

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Shovelhead
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I took my 09 FLHX in for it's 1000 mile check and they asked if I wanted to switch to synthetic. I elected not to at that time. I agree with Dave63. they will over charge you. I am switching to 20w-50 Amzoil this week at 3000.
 

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Ok, here is another slant. My guy tells me the best thing is Syn3 in the crankcase and keep organic in the trannie. Any thoughts?
 

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Ok, here is another slant. My guy tells me the best thing is Syn3 in the crankcase and keep organic in the trannie. Any thoughts?
My thoughts, you can do better than Syn3 for less money.

For the primary, you want to avoid using anything that has friction modifiers in it. You can use 10W-40 to 20W-50, or ATF. All the primary fluid has to do is lubricate the primary chain and draw heat away from the clutch plates. Nothing exotic needed here.

For the transmission, 20W-50 motor oil, or 75W-90 - 75W-140 gear oil. I use synthetic.

For the engine, 20W50 motor oil. Again I use synthetic here. (Mobil1 15W-50 silver cap)
 

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I have a dumb question....
Im pretty new to owning a Harley, I just changed the transmission fluid after 1000 miles on my Nightster following the owners manual. Does that mean I changed the primary too? Are they the same?
 

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Yes, There is only engine oil and tranny oil in a sportster. Big twins have 3 oils to change. I don't believe there is a "primary" per se on a sportster. Someone correct me if I'm wrong.
 

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I have a dumb question....
I'm pretty new to owning a Harley, I just changed the transmission fluid after 1000 miles on my Nightster following the owners manual. Does that mean I changed the primary too? Are they the same?
Sportsters have 2 cavities; engine and tranny oil is the same and primary is separate.
 

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Thanks,
That makes sense I was crawling underneath it and pouring through the owners manual to make sure i didnt miss anything, so actually I did change the primary, and the tranny and engine oil are the same. Cool
 

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75W-90 Eh? Do sportsters tend to run hotter or something? I was really thinking about running synthetic since people say its worth the extra dough to do so. What would be the advantage of running gear oil?
 

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Gear oils and engine oils are classified by 2 different viscosity grading systems. A 75W-90 gear oil is about the same viscosity as a 10W-40 engine oil.

Since the sportster's gear box and the primary share the same oil, the thinking is that an oil formulated for a gear box is preferable to one that is formulated for something else.

The detergents and antiwear systems in engine oils may cope with excessive temperatures better. Engine oils are intended for a shorter service life than gear oils so one point to be aware of is the viscosity modifiers used in multigrade engine oils may not be as shear stable as true gear oil viscosity modifiers, so a bigger viscosity drop in service is possible.

But to answer your question, no, Sportsters do not run hotter. Its just that the primary oil has to serve double duty.... lube the primary chain/cool the clutch and lube the gearbox.
 

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Gear oil differs from motor oil. Most people assume that SAE 90 gear oil is much thicker than SAE 40 or 50 motor oil. However, they are the same viscosity. According to AMSOIL Technical Drivetrain Products Manager Kevin Dinwiddie, the difference is in the additives.
http://www.upmpg.com/drivetrain/gearlube/

This 70W80 GL-4 Gear Oil (SAE 5W30/10W30 engine oil viscosity) is designed for use in manual transmissions and transaxles.
http://www.redlineoil.com/products_gearlubricants.asp?categoryID=7
 

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Wow,
OK, if you had a Sportster-would you run 75-90 gear oil or 20w-50 Synthetic? That also opens up a can o' worms about which BRAND of oil to use. Harley claims they only want you to use "Harley" brand oil, organic or syn cause other oils might "interact negetavily" with Harley oil causing anguish with the bike so on so forth. This is propaganda am I right? If I flush the system and replace it with Brand x (Amsoil, Redline, Mobil 1, etc) and run that brand exclusively, there shouldnt be any problem I wouldnt think
 

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Wow,
OK, if you had a Sportster-would you run 75-90 gear oil or 20w-50 Synthetic?
My opinion is that I would run a gear oil that is safe for wet clutches.

That also opens up a can o' worms about which BRAND of oil to use. Harley claims they only want you to use "Harley" brand oil, organic or syn cause other oils might "interact negetavily" with Harley oil causing anguish with the bike so on so forth. This is propaganda am I right?
Harley doesn't have any refineries... oil companies submit bids for oil formulated to HD's specs, and they go with the lowest bidder. This isn't to say that the oil you buy at the HD shop is bad. But it is my opinion that you can get better oil, often times cheaper than what you would pay at the dealer.


If I flush the system and replace it with Brand x (Amsoil, Redline, Mobil 1, etc) and run that brand exclusively, there shouldnt be any problem I wouldnt think
Yup, just do your research to make sure that the trans/primary oil you are considering is safe for wet clutches.
 

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Thanks for all the great info..I just ordered some Amsoil 20w-50 synthetic for the engine and primary, Technically I should be working right now not researching oil and Harley tips but whatever, no boss around this week
 
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