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Old 08-19-2012, 03:31 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Questions on pushrod adjustment

Hey guys, I'm a new new shovel owner just starting to learn the ropes. I have an 82 FXRS and it runs pretty good, but I have notice a pronounced clatter that seemed to be coming from the front rocker cover. After reading lots of posts on PR adjustment, I decided to at least lift the covers and have a look.

My first question is whether you can tell by the pic or movie whether I have solids or hydraulics just looking at the top of them. I know with a bike this old, you never know what's been done.

Second, can you look at the movie and confirm that this much travel in the lifter is not normal. I can't get any of the other ones to move this much. As a matter of fact, I can't even spin the other ones even when they're on the base circle. That's not right, is it? I imagine this one could cause a pretty loud clatter, right?

Thanks for any help you can give me.

Link to movie:
http://s1078.beta.photobucket.com/us...eb130.mp4.html
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Last edited by DWinTX; 08-19-2012 at 06:03 PM. Reason: Fix link
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Old 08-20-2012, 08:59 PM   #2 (permalink)
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To me they look like solids.
When on base circle of cams, both valves closed top dead center of cylinder your adjusting, you should have no side to side or up and down play, but push rod should spin between your fingers.
Adjust to obtain this condition.

move to other cylinder if necessary

my 2
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Old 08-28-2012, 03:25 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Thanks Cad, they were indeed solids. Inserts actually. Got them adjusted. One was way loose and the other three too tight. I think they're cheapos. They clatter like hell. Gonna save up for hydraulics.
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Old 09-01-2012, 08:10 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I would keep the solids.Get used to the clatter and ride.Hydr lifters are ok but a pain to adjust and can bleed down and take time to pump back up
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Old 10-07-2012, 06:41 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I have run both solids and hydraulics. I prefer solids. If you change to hydraulic you will need to change cam also. You may want to just buy a new set of solid lifters and pushrods.Look at Crane, I have the kind that the adjuster is on the lifter. Just my opinion.
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Old 10-07-2012, 08:53 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Nitram_b4 is reading this now saying WTF is this?
Just a suggestion, I would clean the motor off next time before popping the covers off.
Looks like you got sand all over
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Old 10-11-2012, 06:30 PM   #7 (permalink)
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That's not sand. It's just the way the paint has worn over the years and the funky way my cheap camera catches it. I'm a clean freak when it comes to engines. Shoulda seen all the crap I got off this bike after I bought it.
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Old 11-05-2012, 08:00 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I agree with the others. Run the solids. You really can't tell something is made cheap from just looking at a Shovelhead part. There are so many really good vendors out there making great updated parts for the Shovels its hard to chose which ones to buy. I would back the adjustment off pull the lifters out and inspect the lifters rollers. There is were you may find a issue. The rollers do fail,but you can replace just the rollers and needle bearings. Or buy new lifters.Get use to adjusting your push rods and carry with you in your tool pouch the correct tools. You never know when on a road trip and a push rod gets out of adjustment and starts to cause a missfire. You will need to stop and adjust. A shovelhead is a mechanic's bike. Ken
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Old 11-05-2012, 04:12 PM   #9 (permalink)
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The reason I referred to them as "cheapo" is because they are the solid inserts for the hydraulic tappets. What I've read is that the lifter cups on these are taller than the cups on hydraulics and solid lifter/tappet assemblies that were designed to be solid to start with. And that puts the front pushrods at a more extreme angle, which is undesirable. I don't really have any problems with solid lifters in general. I've run them in some of my classic cars.

It's actually been awhile since I posted this and I've been running these for a month or so. Haven't had the cash to replace them. I think the noise I attributed to them is something else. There's a sound more like a knock (deeper) than the "clatter" you usually hear from solids that seems to be coming from the front rocker cover. I might have something worn or loose in there. I'm a decent mechanic, but I don't really know shovels yet. Sooner or later, I'm going to get in there and see what's up. Just haven't had the time yet.
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Old 11-05-2012, 05:40 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I ran a set of Solid conversions for 20 years and just had to replace one roller in that time.Went to a set of real solids and cant tell any differance
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Old 02-07-2013, 11:04 AM   #11 (permalink)
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I'd stay with the solids too, the 'sewing machine' sound is kinda soothing
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