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How much free play on primary chain - 2001 Buell X1 lightning

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1/2 inch

Posted on Oct 01, 2009


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Install of new primary and shoe 95 Sportster. Old one had a couple mm play each way, I presume for adjustment when cover on involves shoe being slightly LOOSE?

Hi,Thomas the shoe should fit tight on the mounting plate and if you primary chain adjusting threaded stud/bolt is all the way down and your new shoe does not allow any chain free play then you have the wrong shoe 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 $5 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 Good luck and have a nice day.
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Free play distance for the primary chain on a 98 Roadking

Hi, Kevin 3/4" cold 1/2" hot and I am sorry you can't find the first and best tool you ever bought for your Harley Davidson but despair not for a mere $10 you can download another one. For more information about your issue, please visit the websites below, and for specific information or questions, please feel free to contact me at Good luck and have a nice day. How To Adjust The Primary Chain On Harley Davidson Evolution Big Twin...
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I have whining noise in front part of primary on my 1996flstc Harley Davidson

by primary i guess thats primary drive chain you need to check the wear guids and the play in the chain

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How to adjust primary on 2005 low rider

Hi Bert, on the upper strand and lifting it up only free play should be 5/8-7/8 inch cold and 3/8-5/8 inch hot. Should be checked every 5,000 miles or if you hear a ratteling or clunking noise in the primary

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How do I tighten a primary on a 1991 Harley Davidson Fatboy?

You take the oval inspection cover off of the outer primary cover. Inside you will see a nut. Loosen the nut and you can raise the primary chain adjuster to tighten the chain or lower it to loosen it. Use your finger to gauge the tension of the upper run of the chain. Set the up and down play of the chain to 3/4" to 7/8" with the engine cold.

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1 Answer

Very load chain sounds coming from left side of engine, could hear this when new, brought back to dealer several times they said it was normal since then i have 25,000 miles on it and the noise is much...

Now, I'll address the primary chain but the warranty is between you and your dealer. From my experiences with the dealers, don't get your hopes up though. Now, find the drain plug on the bottom side of the primary back near the derby cover. Drain the primary. If you have to take the shifter and the floorboard off to get the primary cover off, do so. Then take the bolts out of the primary and take the cover off. You'll have to take the bolts out of the oval inspection cover to get the primary off. Remove the bottom bolt and the rear bolt of the inspection cover. Once you get the cover off, look for anything obviously wrong in there. If the primary has a conventional chain tensioner, check the up and down movement in the top run of the chain. It should have 3/4 to 7/8 inch up and down play with the engine cold. If the chain has an automatic adjuster in it, the chain will be tight. Look to see if you see anything that the chain might be rubbing. Look at the underside of the inner primary at the top just above the engine sprocket for signs of rubbing. See if the chain is running in the middle of the tension shoe at the bottom of the primary.

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1 Answer

Primary chain hitting case on clutch housing, cable nearly fully adjusted clutch slips if adjust any more. bad grinding noise from chain hitting case can i adjust clutch any more in housing?

The primary chain adjustment has nothing to do with the clutch. Take the small upper inspection cover off the primary cover and use your finger to check the primary chain tension. It should have 3/8 to 1/2 inch up and down movement in the top run of the chain when the engine is cold. To adjust, loosen the lock nut on the primary chain adjuster on the bottom of the primary case. Turn the screw upward to tighten the chain, downward to loosen. Once set, tighten the locknut.

To adjust the clutch, loosen the clutch cable adjuster as much as you can. Remove the derby cover from the primary cover. Remove the spring and the locknut. Turn the adjuster screw counterclockwise as far as it will go. Turn it back in 1/4 turn and replace the lock nut and the spring. Replace derby cover. Adjust the clutch cable so that you have about a 1/8 inch play at the hand lever.

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1 Answer

There is a whining noise from the primary side of engine by the generator is there a bearing on the out side near the cover?

No, the whining noise come from the primary chain as it spinning over the clutch and the sprocket motor.Perhaps the adjustment is too tight,this will cause the noise.Do you check the chain tight through the inspection cover on the primary .You need a 1/2 to 5/8 in free play.

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How do you adjust the primary chain 2004 buell blast?

There is a large nut on a bolt under the left side of the motor under the shifter loosen the nut and tighten the bolt in. It requires you open the primary chain access door behind the left foor peg to do so. There should be 1/4-1/2" of play on the chain. This is a GREAT time to change the primary oil too. Make sure you use NEW Harley Primary oil too. It is a specific fluid for the primary.

Mar 23, 2011 | Buell Blast Motorcycles

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Adjust primary chain on a harley davidson motorcycle

after safely supporting rear wheel off ground, remove small inspection cover from primary cover. rotate rear wheel until primary chain is at tightest point. cold engine- chain free play should be 5/8" - 7/8", hot engine should be 3/8" - 5/8". to adjust, loosen primary chain adjuster shoe nut (bolt head is similar to a carriage bolt-square head), sometimes you will need to tap bolt end to free up adjuster, as it sits in grooces to hold at desired level. adjust to desired tension and tighten bolt to 22-29 ft/lbs. then recheck chain freeplay after rotating rear wheel at least one full revolution. If OK, reinstall cover.

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