Question about 2000 Harley Davidson FLSTC Heritage Softail Classic

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Not getting oil to the lifters on my 1991 evolution engine.I have blown out all the lines and have oil pressure but the top end is still bone dry

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Have you taken the tappet oil screen out and cleaned it? It's the round plug that looks like it takes a large screwdriver to get it out. If so, then your oil pump is not working.

The oil pump has a slider valves in it. It's under the plug towards the outside of the pump. When the engine first starts, the oil pressure is directed to the tappets. Once the oil pressure rises above a certain level, the slider rises and then it allows oil to the bottom end. The tappets get the oil first.

The oil is pumped from the tappets up through the pushrods to the rocker boxes. Now, your rocker boxes are not going to be flooded with oil either. There may be a small puddle of oil somewhere but most of the oil drains back down to the bottom end of the engine where it is scavenged out and sent back to the oil tank.

If you do not have any oil pressure to your tappets, they will rattle like all get out. It'll be obvious. Now, there are three drive keys in the oil pump. One drive key for each set of gears, feed gears and scavenge gears. And, one drive key in the cam chest that drives the entire pump. Remove the oil pressure switch and spark plugs. Spin the engine with the starter. If no oil comes out of the hole where the oil pressure switch is, I'd advise pulling the cam chest cover (nose cone) off. Once you get it off, look at the gear on the end of the oil pump drive shaft. You'll be able to see the end of the keyway in the shaft. Now, notice if the slot for the key in the gear on the end of the shaft is aligned with the slot. If not, the key is sheared. If the key is sheared, you're probably had a tooth break off of the plastic breather gear and it's gotten caught in the scavenge gears and locked the oil pump up. You must remove and clean out the oil pump and replace the sheared key. If the breather gear is broken (or even if it's not) I'd recommend installing the new S&S Reed Valve type breather. It doesn't rotate and works great. Solves the problems in that area.

Good Luck

Posted on Jul 07, 2010


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