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Old 10-23-2006, 04:41 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Exclamation How long will this engine last?

I've got a 2002 Injected Fatty with 8000 miles on it. If a bike is not red-lined or rode into the dirt and is maintained on a routine basis, then how many miles should I expect to get out of this engine before a rebuild is needed? In your experience, what will be the first major problems to expect (tranny, lifters, starter?)
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Old 10-23-2006, 05:17 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kingdog
I've got a 2002 Injected Fatty with 8000 miles on it. If a bike is not red-lined or rode into the dirt and is maintained on a routine basis, then how many miles should I expect to get out of this engine before a rebuild is needed? In your experience, what will be the first major problems to expect (tranny, lifters, starter?)

wow, your question is really not an easy one to answer. Its probably best to get the manual and read it. Then you will understand how this engine really works. Simply stated, if you take proper care and do all of the maintenance you should get great life out of this engine. If you ride it strictly on the highway you will get many more miles out of it then if you ride it in city traffic. Reason being, is out on the highway you will only run your engine approximately 1 min per every mile you travel. In the city you might have to run the engine 15 minutes for every mile. Simple case in point here is that a better way to figure out how long your engine will last is better stated in how many hours will it run for.

If taken care of and not beaten into the ground and speed shifted, there is really no reason that you cannot get in excess of 100,000 miles out of it if you ride it (combined city and highway). On another note, if you let it sit around and only ride it occasionally and don't store it properly for the winter months then you will most likely not get very good engine life. Engine life is also determined by how many heat cycles it sees. So when your going for a ride, start it up and let it warm up before you ride it. Give the engine and oil a chance to thermally stabilize. you see, its really up to you and how you treat this engine that will determine how long it lasts.

Regarding a rebuild. From what we rider's know about the twin cam engine is simply this. The first thing that will most likely go is the cam chain tensioner shoes. And sure, if you're gonna shift it hard and ride it rough, there will be a better chance that the drive line will fail. So make it a point to warm it up properly, and ride it smooth. Smooth riding makes for better riding habbits any way.

Last edited by Roadie; 10-23-2006 at 05:21 PM.
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Old 10-23-2006, 05:30 PM   #3 (permalink)
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03 fatboy and going strong with 43k miles. I see 100k as easy with good care and maintenance. I am sure there are a lot more out there with a lot more miles on it then mine too who will testify.
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Old 10-23-2006, 06:25 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kingdog
I've got a 2002 Injected Fatty with 8000 miles on it. If a bike is not red-lined or rode into the dirt and is maintained on a routine basis, then how many miles should I expect to get out of this engine before a rebuild is needed? In your experience, what will be the first major problems to expect (tranny, lifters, starter?)
If you keep the bike (drive train) stock and perform the proscribed maintenance, using the factory recommended lubricants and parts, I think you can go well over 100,000 miles without a major problem.

I put over 100,000 miles on my 1984 FXRP with NO major problems - my '05 FXDI is a much better engine (IMHO) and so I expect it will perform at least as well. The cam chain tension pads are a wear item but that issue is well known and not a surprise problem.

Browse the Forum - many of the "problems" are self-inflicted. Things get less reliable the more folks "improve" on what the factory did.

That said, the latest closed loop FI bikes may be problematic - one reason I like my '05 open loop fuel injection - starts easy and runs great.
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Old 10-23-2006, 10:46 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kingdog
I've got a 2002 Injected Fatty with 8000 miles on it. If a bike is not red-lined or rode into the dirt and is maintained on a routine basis, then how many miles should I expect to get out of this engine before a rebuild is needed? In your experience, what will be the first major problems to expect (tranny, lifters, starter?)
~200,000 miles, so long at you check/replace your cam chain tensioners and primariy chain tensioner regularly. Plastic parts! Switch to gear drive and you only have to worry about the primary chain tensioner. Oh, and don't get the new auto adjust primary chain tensioner.
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Old 10-24-2006, 05:31 AM   #6 (permalink)
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how many miles a year do you ride. alot of average Joe's only put a few thouhsand miles a year on their scoots. If you only ride a few a year mathmatically it'll last a while. I know smart arse reply. I'm just in a cold day can't ride mood, sorry.

good luck and ride safe.
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Old 10-24-2006, 01:58 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by brownjams
I know smart arse reply. I'm just in a cold day can't ride mood, sorry.

good luck and ride safe.
I have been thinking about driving over to Breeces and sulking at the counter. They have a really nice SE Springer to stare at.
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Old 10-26-2006, 12:13 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I got 180,000 out of my EVO before a cracked engine case made a rebuild necessary. When I took it apart I was very happy with what I saw. The motor would have probably gone another 50,000 miles without a major problem. I rebuilt it with Delkron cases and it now has 107,000 miles on it and I will probably do the top end this year but only because I just finished building a really trick set of heads for it.

The twin Cam is a very sound design for the most part and should easily get 150,000 to 200,000 miles with PROPER MAINTENANCE.
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Old 10-26-2006, 10:27 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by godzilla22
I got 180,000 out of my EVO before a cracked engine case made a rebuild necessary. When I took it apart I was very happy with what I saw. The motor would have probably gone another 50,000 miles without a major problem. I rebuilt it with Delkron cases and it now has 107,000 miles on it and I will probably do the top end this year but only because I just finished building a really trick set of heads for it.

The twin Cam is a very sound design for the most part and should easily get 150,000 to 200,000 miles with PROPER MAINTENANCE.

So you are saying all he has to do is change the fluids and his motor will last ~200,000 miles?????? We are talking about 45 degree air cooled V-Twin motor right?

No doubt these motors are built pretty well but to expect ~200,000 miles is asking a little much don't you think?
There are many examples of motors that have a signifigant amount of miles on them and an equal number that have shitthebed with <20,000 miles. The one thing I can tell you is your motor will fall somewhere in the middle of those numbers. Exactly where is anyone's guess.

Truth is ....it is basicaly a crapshoot. You will be rewarded by your maintenance efforts and it is reasonable to expect at least 5-7 years of service out of the motor before it needs to be refreshed.
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Old 10-27-2006, 12:15 AM   #10 (permalink)
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I believe godzilla22 said "PROPER MAINTENANCE", not "just change the fluids". I know I didn't.
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Old 10-27-2006, 02:26 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Proper maintenance is the key and it involves a LOT more than changing fluids. Look through some of my posts and you'll begin to see what I mean. Motorcycle maintenance is a constant process not merely an oil and filter change now and again.
One thing that I have not previously touched on is the importance of running your engine in the correct operating range which varies depending on how the thing is set up. You need to listen to your motor and know how to hear what it's telling you. I can't even begin to tell you how many time I've heard someone going by on a bike literally lugging the sh_t out of their engine and not even having a clue that they're doing anything wrong. That alone over time will significantly reduce the longevity of your engine.
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Old 10-27-2006, 02:16 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Always Listen to your motor. You know your bikes signature sound.. and they are all different. Your motor/tranny talks to ya. As *soon* as it starts to tell you something's not right, check it out.
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Old 10-27-2006, 02:24 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Leave it stock or close to it and your motor will last about 10x as long as my TC.
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Old 10-27-2006, 03:04 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Looks like you been riding about two thousand miles a year, at that rate, if you maintain it properly, it will last you at least 50 years! Is that long enough?
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