Question about 1993 Harley Davidson XLH Sportster 883

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Loose chain just want to tighten the chainits an 85 sportster

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Loosen the axle nut and the lock nuts for the chain adjusters on each side of the swingarm. Turn the adjuster to move the rear wheel to the rear to tighten the chain.

You want to adjust the chain so that you have 1 inch up and down play in the chain. By this I mean 1/2" above center and 1/2" below center of the chain as it sits on the bike, 1" up and down inclusive. Adjustment should be made at the point where the chain is the tightest. Roll the rear wheel while checking the chain tension. Find the tightest point to make your adjustment.

Move both chain adjusters the same amount to keep wheel straight within the swingarm. Once adjusted, roll the wheel a couple of turns and check the adjustment of the chain again. Once finished, tighten adjuster lock nuts and retorque the axle nut to 50 foot pounds of torque.

Good Luck, Steve

Posted on May 09, 2010


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Hi, I tightened my honda cbf 600's chain but i can not loose it again and now it's too tight.

steps to loosen the chain on a CBF600:
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-loosen the rear axe nut approx 1 full turn, this should require a 27mm socket.
-look for adjusting bolts on either side of the swingarm, sticking out from the rear plate. There will be an adjusting nut and lock nut on it.
- Loosen the 10mm locknuts on both sides (bringing it towards the rear of the bike) while holding the head of the 12mm adjusting nut from turning.
- Adjust both of the adjusting nuts outwards to loosen the chain, inwards to tighten the chain. 1/2 turn on the adjusting bolt will change the chain freeplay by about 10mm.
- Hold the 12mm nut, and snug the 10mm nut up to it. This will lock the adjusters in place.
- While holding the bike, press firmly on the back of the rear tire, This will move the rear wheel forward, and taking up any slack that was created by loosening the adjusting nuts.
- (Optional step but suggested) Use the hatch marks on the swingarm, just below the axle, to gauge whether the rear axle is adjusted evenly on both sides. Make any adjustments necessary to align the axle evenly on both sides. This will require moving the adjuster on one side ONLY. Consider your chain tension while doing this step (if necessary) since you can either loosen one side or tighten the other. After making any adjustments, press the wheel forward again and re-check your alignment.
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Have you checked the tension on your primary chain lately. The chain should be adjusted to have 3/4 to 7/8 inch up and down movement when the engine is cold.

Remove the top primary plug and you can reach in with your finger and lift the primary chain up and down. The adjuster is on the bottom of the primary cover. Loosen the nut and using an allen wrench adjust the tension on the chain. Screwing the screw inward tightens the chain, outward loosens it. Do not tighten the chain too tight. As the engine warms up and expands, the chain will become tighter. If you get it too tight, it could cause damage to other components.

If you don't think this is the problem, repost and we'll try something else. If you feel comfortable pulling the primary cover off, you might want to check for a loose engine sprocket nut. I've seen them come loose on many occasions. If you pull the primary, disconnect the battery. You' may need all your fingers in the future. Good Luck

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