Question about 2003 Harley Davidson FLSTFI Fat Boy

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Harley Question? Is it true that Harley's are so hard to maintain becuase they vibrate so much when you ride them that a lot of nuts and bolts come loose? I am thinking of buying a Bike and I Love, Love, Love the Harley's but unfortunatly I don't have enough time to maintain a High Maintanience bike (I'm already restoring my Truck)

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  • ecurb1111 Mar 01, 2009

    what parts do i need to change my 1984 flt with frame mounted fairng to the single headlight with polished tin covers ..is it as simple as turninf the triple trees around or do i need a new front end ???

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How do i start my fat 2008 fat boy without a key i do have the code but i do not know how enter it in the bike so i can start it

Posted on Feb 16, 2009

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The newer Harleys are not as critical on maintenance as the older ones.But any motorcycle you get needs attention and if you cant do most yourself it gets very costly.Part of the mystic of owning a Harley is understanding and taking care of it.
BTW I ride one of those AMF Harleys and wouldnt trade it for 3 new ones.

Posted on Jan 03, 2009

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I have good news for you!!! You are thinking about the Harleys of old. I own a 2001 FXDL Lowrider which I now have put 24,000 miles on and have not turned a screw on it yet! Also there is not a drop of oil on my garage floor. It has never left me on the side of the road and never failed to crank except for one time when I let the battery run down and that was my fault for leaving the ignition in the accessory position all night. This is pretty much the same story I hear from all Harley riders on late model bikes. When AMF owned Harley, quality was the pitts! They were the worst thing on two wheels and AMF didn't really care. They were just about to let the bike name go the way of the Indian and other bikes of yesteryear. When the employees of HD were allowed to buy out the company in the very early eighties, that all changed. These people had a sense of pride in a product that they manufactured at a company that they owned. Year after year the bike line improved and now, over 25 years later, they have a product that is as good as any on the market. Mine has the 88 cubic inch twin cam engine which is rubber mounted and the vibration is not bad at all. A friend of mine just purchased a 2007 Night Train last week and brought it from Slidell, La. in the back of his pickup. I went over with another friend to help him offload it at his home. He tossed me the keys and said "crank her up." I was shocked.....absolutely NO vibration! Harley has added counter balance shafts to their new 96 cubic inch power plant. As a die hard Harley fan, I don't know if I like it that way. As a practical minded gear head, you gotta love it. It was smooth as glass and with the new 6 speed tranny, he was told to expect 56 miles from a 3 dollar gallon of gas. That sure beats my 48 with my 5 speed! To make a long story short, get the Harley. If that is what your heart desires, you will not be satisfied with anything else. All the breakdowns and bad quality problems are nothing but distant memories from over 25 years ago. A bad reputation is a hard thing to overcome,but Harley Davidson Motorcycles couldn't have done a better job in turning a fine name around and creating a product anyone would be proud to own. I know I have been extremely pleased with mine and when the day comes in the distant future when it is time to put the old Beast out to pasture, the new Beast is gonna have Harley Davidson stamped on the side of it!!

Posted on Nov 20, 2008

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Need torque spec for front axle nut and pinch bolt on 2003 FXDL Harley


Hi, Chip front axle nut 50-55 ft lbs pinch bolt 25-30 ft lbs for this scenario you will need your service/owners manual if you can not find the first and best tool you ever bought for your Harley, despair not, for a mere $8 you can download another one. For more information about your issue and valuable "FREE" downloads that you will need please click on the links below and for more specific information or questions at no charge please feel free to contact me at xlch@mail.com. Good luck and have a wonderful day.
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Harley Davidson DYNA Models Workshop Service Repair Manual 2003
http://partsfinder.onlinemicrofiche.com/ronnies/showmodel.asp?make=hdmc
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check your motor mount bolts. my top motor mount bolts had loosened and caused a lot of vibration until re torqued.

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If You Have Been Dumping The Clutch And Alot Of Hot Rodding Like Most Harley Riders Do . Absolute Power Corrupts. You May Have The Fly Wheels Out Of True. Resulting In Out Of Balance Condition. Will Be Very Expensive. Broken Crank Pin Expensive. Better Check It Soon .

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Hi James, and the usual suspects are:
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The bolts that hold the voltage regulator have vibrated out. what size are they?


On the older bikes, they were 1/4" X 20 X 1". The holes were clear drilled and they had nuts on the backside. I always put nylon lock nuts on the backside so they wouldn't vibrate off.

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My car is a Honda civic 1997 model,i had my upper engine support replaced and the timing belt but after installing it, i can hear a vibration sound everytime i accelerate the gas whiule in trhe neutrral...


I am afraid not. The water from the radiator never goes into the engine. Radiator is just there to keep the engine temperature Normal. That is to say that it keeps in cool because engines get very hot while driving the car. If you take out the water, it would overhead quickly and would eventually halt the engine. As for the vibration from engine, it because the supports of the engine aren't bolted together snuggly. So when you accelerate, the engine vibrates hard and then also shake up the supports and cause noise.

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1 Answer

What does the 16,000 mile checkup consist of?


i my advice to you is that everytime before you ride a bike you perform a service check..there have been many times that i have had seat bols vibrate loose the brake handle nut was hanging on by a thread when i checked before one ride and the rear caliper bolts vibrated loose once and the chain backup up locking nuts vibrated off. believe me it will never ever happen to me again because i spent two days at my work going out to the parking lot and little by little took axle pinch bolts main rear axle nuts adjustment nuts seat bolt nut oil drain nut oil filled dip stick radiator cap, and lockwired all the hose clamps ( because i race and this is a requirement) but im glad they made me do it...because now by just a glance you look and see wire and that means theyre tight no question about it. you dont have to hope they're tight. after sixteen (k) miles, change the plugs and air filter, and oil and filter and check wheel bearings for any play and check for proper tire wear and inflation. Might want to spray some throttle body on the carbs also.

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Hard to diagnose, but if you have a bad engine vibration, you will be able to diagnose that when stopped and just revving up the engine. Moving balance problem can be easily out of true wheel and or needs balanced. (You can make your own balancer/ wheel true guage our of a couple of 8X8 posts with axle size hole drilled in each one) If you clonked a curb or pot hole at speed this can easily happen. Hope this helps you with your scoot, Rick

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