Question about 2001 Harley Davidson XL Sportster 883

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2001 883 harley sportster bike will start and stay running for 3to5minutes and will just die out bike will not start right after it dies out until it sitts for 5 minutes i put fuel filter and new plugs on it it stayed running a little longer but died out i took 1 of the new plugs out and noticed it was black looking this bike has not been rode for about 2 months and only has 3000 miles on it

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The carburetor is not adjusted correctly for normal operating temperature.

When the plugs are black, it indicates a rich mixture.

Plugs should look like a light brown with a toasty texture to it when the carburetor is adjusted right.

Posted on Aug 05, 2010

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It needs the carb cleaned, the carb is not filling properly and it is starving for fuel and dies until the carb refills

Posted on Aug 05, 2010

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Sounds like a burnt cylinder.

Posted on Aug 05, 2010

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1 Answer

2004 harley sportster 883 fires and dies. security shuts down how do i get it running


Somethings are best taken to the bike shop when it comes to electronics, unless you know the security codes... did you program the ororiginal codes?

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Looking for carburetor drain plug


The stock carb for this bike doesn't have a drain plug, you have to remove the float bowl at the bottom of the carb. You can check the jets with the bowl off. Also check the intake seals where the intake manifold connects to the cylinder heads.

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Bike dies when running. if i jiggle the switch it starts again


Sounds like you need a new switch. The older models, 1996 and earlier, used the mechanical switches. In 1997, I think that's right, Harley went to the electronic switches on the Big Twins. The Sportsters still use a mechanical switch as best as I know.

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2000 XLH sportster bike starts up and idles right but once you put it in gear and try to ride cuts out and dies


Sounds like you're letting it idle too long with the enricher on. The enricher circuit is VERY rich and it will foul your plugs. When you start the bike, run the enricher only long enough to where you can get the bike to stay running with the throttle grip or throttle lock. Turn that enricher off as quickly as possible. Your plugs are probably fouled.

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Aug 28, 2010 | Harley Davidson XL Sportster 883...

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While riding all lights started to flash engine run erratic bike died of death bike will not start


Start with charging and load testing the battery. Then test the stator, to test the stator on the bottom of the right down tube is the plug that goes from the stator to the voltage regulator. With a multi meter, read the voltage from the stator, I forget the exact values but as you rev the motor the voltage should climb if it dosn't your stator is bad. If the stator is good take a reading again with the motor running at the battery cables, again I forget the exact value but you should have a steady reading at the battery, if it isn't and fluctuates it is bad.

May 07, 2009 | 2004 Harley Davidson XL 883C Sportster...

1 Answer

04 883 dies when run awhile. it then dies and won't start till it coold down.when it dies - no lights on instruments, no headlight, no turn signals, it's as if battry is dead


It sounds lie you may have an issue with the stator/charging system, I would reccomend puting a meter on the battery with the bike running and see what you are chargeing, Also see what the meter says when the bike dies. If it loses voltage or just dies. If the meter shows a drop in voltage then I would start with the basics or if neede take it to a local repair shop. Good luck

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