Question about Harley Davidson Harley-Davidson Motorcycle Desktop Telephone

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Low or no fire to points

Late 84 classic had been rebuilt before i bought it. h.e.i. went bad and i reverted to points and condensor. washed the bike and bike ran rough. attributed it to something may have gotten wet. now two days later i am getting barely any spark and even when running there is no noticable change to it when adjusting either points or carb.

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  • Anonymous Nov 01, 2008

    Sort of the same problem however didn't change e.f.i. on 1983 shovel but did change carb with no difference in the way it ran. Advanced and ****** timing with no change in the way the bike ran. Please help

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Did you change the plug wires to solid core wires hei uses a fiber core wire with almost no resistance and points need around 3-5ohms resistance, the coil needs to be for points also this should make it run right

Posted on Jan 01, 2009

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1 Answer

Engine backfires through the carburator, it still runs, but when the throttle is snapped there is a backfire through the carb. timing right? how is it adjusted? The bike is a 1983 "rat"


more likely an intake leak timeing doesnt just go off on its own if you still have points it could be the condensor but id be changing that to electronic ignition anyway a complete ultima ignition system is lees than 2 bills and not real hard to install "good instructions"

Apr 28, 2010 | Harley Davidson Harley-Davidson Motorcycle...

1 Answer

My 2000 fat boy is back firing real bad when you give it the gas, really loud and blue flames. I pulled the plugs and cleaned them and its worse.I also replaced the gas with 91 octane.


check your coil connections it sounds like a coil misfire ignition module or its connector would be my next stop also if your bike still has the cam sensor behind the point cover not sure what year they changed that but if youll pull that cover and its not just an empty hole then your looking at the pickup coil or camsensor call it what you will but its a very likely culprit

Sep 27, 2009 | Harley Davidson Harley-Davidson Motorcycle...

5 Answers

Plugs Fowling 79 shovel


Install a Dyna, or equivalent, electronic ignition.

Jun 07, 2009 | Harley Davidson Harley-Davidson Motorcycle...

1 Answer

My bike was runing good it,s a94 fatboy the other


Sounds like your voltage regulator is bad or come unplugged

May 09, 2009 | Harley Davidson Harley-Davidson Motorcycle...

1 Answer

Decrease hot idle


Your bike is carb or injected? Anyway Hd that are injected start at high RPM and after heating up the idle kicks down. You have a Temp sensor for this, which sounds like it is bad. I can not believe your bike would run at 100 rpm no way. harley runs at 950 to 1050 at an idle. It does not sound like you have a carb so Im not going to go into that fix.

Mar 17, 2009 | Harley Davidson Harley-Davidson Motorcycle...

1 Answer

Wiring harness 1974 sportster???


I am assuming your bike is stock, or close to it. In 1974, all h-d's used a battery coil ignition with wasted spark. Battery positive flows from the ignition switch to the coil, through the coil primary winding to the points, then open or shorted to negative (through the chassis) depending on the points being open or closed. When the engine is turning over, this is what happens: The small cam that operates the points has the points in the closed position, so battery current is flowing through the coil primary, through the closed points to negative. This causes the primary winding inside the coil to set up a magnetic field. When the cam starts to open the points, the current tries to bridge the gap. If we let this happen, the big arc between the point surfaces would burn up in a hurry, and the plugs would not fire for the following reason: The ignition coil is a transformer. It has a primary and secondary winding.The secondary winding has many more turns of wire than the primary. When the secondary winding "cuts" magnetic lines of force a larger voltage is induced in the secondary. In the case on your sporty, we are boosting 12 volts to over 10,000 volts. This depends on 2 things: The number of lines of force and the speed they are cut. So, when the points just start to open, the condenser absorbes the current until the points are open enough to prevent arcing. Then the current flow through the primary winding stops. The magnetic field quickly collapses, cutting through the secondary windings that are connected to the spark plugs. The resulting high voltage (pressure) Jumps the gap on both plugs and lights the fire. One of the cylinders is on the exhaust stroke so that spark is wasted. So: ignition on : 12v at coil positive. With points closed, 0 volts at coil negative. If you read voltage here, the points are dirty or open or the wire from the coil to the points is open. Points open: 12 volts at coil negative. To check for spark, you don't have to crank the engine. Just manually opening the points should fire the plugs. After you get the plugs firing, post again and I will tell you how to razor tune this thing. It should start instantly with a perfect idle. Hope this is clear.

Oct 14, 2008 | Harley Davidson Harley-Davidson Motorcycle...

1 Answer

Electrical Problem


check ignition switch and wirring , may have a short. had similar problem on 84 ultra wirring at switch had shorted out on frame

Oct 09, 2008 | Harley Davidson Harley-Davidson Motorcycle...

1 Answer

1995 fat boy- harley davidson


This is going to be a problem that will need to be tracked down because there are several things that could cause this. It's going to be in the electrical system, and any one or combination of the following can cause this, Faulty switch, especially the ignition switch, bad wiring which could be a bad connection, loose ground, bare wire, or broken wire, These are the two cheapest, but the hardest to find. Now, it can also be a bad or malfunctioning ignition module, coil, voltage regulator, and magneto assembly. You will have to test each of these. I recommend that you start at the spark plug end and work your way back since most of this is in line and work in conjunction with each other. Keep in mind that this being an intermittent problem, it may be extremely hard to find.
I also have a 95 Softail, and recently had a similar intermittent problem, turned out that there was a hairline crack in the regulator, and the problem would only occur if the regulator was warm enough for the crack to open a bit. I also traced the wiring harness, found and replaced several wires that were in bad shape, thinned, stretched, corroded, etc... You will be amazed at how much wear the wiring harness will have on a 13 year old bike.
Don't let this discourage you. In my opinion, the mid to late 90's models are the best HD ever built, and the Evo is by far the best engine. With the newer bike you have to worry about things like, crank and cam sensors, ECM's, fuel injection, and all the other electronic BS. It's to the point that the average rider can't work on his/her own bike, which is getting away from the HD tradition. That's a great bike you have, keep it for a long time. I may buy a newer bike someday, I don't know, but I do know that I will always keep my 95. Good luck with this and be safe.

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Sep 15, 2008 | Harley Davidson Harley-Davidson Motorcycle...

1 Answer

Bike won't start


Start by narrowing it down to fire or fuel problem. Pull a sparkplug, ground it to the head, and crank the engine. If there is no spark, then test the plug wires, coil, then ignition module in order down the line until you find where the power stops. If you have spark, then check the petcock to carb for fuel. If there is no fuel from the petcock, then it will be the petcock filter or the petcock is bad. If you do have fuel to the carb, but no to the cylinders, then the carb may need to be cleaned and/or rebuilt. Try these and let me know.

Aug 19, 2008 | Harley Davidson Harley-Davidson Motorcycle...

2 Answers

I have a 1984 Harley Davidson FXRS. I have a single fire crane hi 4 ignition system. It ran flawlessly for a few years and now the bike missed a few time then quit entirely. Now have no spark and would...


There's no real way to check the coil, it either works or it doesn't. I've found that with my Harley's when I lose spark it's generally a bad wire or loose connection. If the wires/connections are good, then it's either the coil or the ignition module. I'd say with the newer Crane on it, that the problem is going to be with the coil. Check the voltage from the ignition module going into the coil. I'm not exact on the voltage, but as long as you have a good strong current getting to the coil, and low to nothing on the plug wire side, then the coil is bad.

Aug 03, 2008 | Harley Davidson Harley-Davidson Motorcycle...

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