Question about 2006 Harley Davidson FXDBI Street Bob

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Knocking on right side of engine in 1stthru 3rd gear at higher rpm's and dies after long rides

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A knocking on the right side of the engine is usually caused by a bad tappet roller bearing. In the Evo engines, they seemed to go bad at about 25 to 30 thousand miles. I have seen them go bad in as little as 13K miles. Then, I've seen them running fine in an engine with 75K miles on it.

Now, tappet roller bearing noise is usually there throughout the entire RPM range and is not affected by the gear. The only way I know of checking it do exploratory surgery, take the cam cover off and pull the tappet blocks out to inspect the tappets. If you allow this to continue and it is a bad roller, it will ruin the camshaft lobe that it's riding on. I've seen them no do any damage to the cam if caught early.

Good Luck

Posted on May 30, 2010

Testimonial: "Thanks that was a pretty detaialed diagnoses. After further investagation it actually sounds more like a ticking sound "

  • wd4ity
    wd4ity Jun 07, 2010

    Well, a ticking sound to one person is a knock to another person. I used to tell people that I couldn't fix a bike over the phone and look what I'm doing now. Funny, huh? (BG)

    Your bike has an engine that is of an old design. I say this because compared to the Japanese bikes, it is an old design because of the pushrod type valve train. This is probably what you're hearing, the slight ticking of rocker arms and stuff.

    So, what I'm going to say is that as long as the engine is making that "bubbidy, bubbidy, bubbidy" noise and not scaring the farm animals when you're riding down the road, just keep on riding it and enjoying the ride. It'll let you know without a doubt when something is wrong. So many riders today worry about every little noise their bikes make that they aren't riding the bike, they've turned their ride into an ongoing troubleshooting experience. If you ever get the chance to ride an old Panhead, do it. Those things make one noise for five miles then that one quits and another starts. When you get back on your new bike, it'll sound like a Cadillac on the inside. Ride safe.

    Good Luck




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