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It is always a matter of preference. Harley, Indian, or Metric; Big Twin or Sportster; Knuckle, Pan, Shovel, Evo, TC, or M8; stock, custom, chopper, hot rod, etc. Then people will argue for hours why their choice is the right one.
 

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I let my shovel go (1978 Lowrider) in 1985 to get on an Evo (1985 FXRS...that I'm still riding btw). At that time...in the club I rode with my bike was treated with some disdain by the other guys. ("see no EVO..." and all that). I took it all in stride, being the FNG anyhow. Eventually though...The Word came down to all chapters..."Get your azz on an EVO". Too many issues with those Pans and Shovels guys were riding. Too many problems on long runs keeping the MC off the road so the Boss told everybody to get an EVO and that was that. Now EVO's are becoming "old school", even classics. I've lived through the whole evolution ( see what I did there..??) on the same bike.
Fascinating.
 

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At that time...in the club I rode with my bike was treated with some disdain by the other guys.
Back in the late 80's when I was riding my shovel (74"), the majority of my riding buddies had Evos. I always got to where we were going. Just not as fast as them.

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Only had a pan for a minute, the few days it took to flip it. As for Shovels, can't say as I really miss them. The motors weren't so bad, but the rest of the scooter was lacking. The single stud exhaust flanges were a PITA and expensive to fix. Heli-arc welders were few and far between back then.
 

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83 FXR......93 FLHTP
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Just curious. I have an Evo. Wondering about various opinions.

Greg
I’ve got an 83 shovel FXR and a 93 EVO FLHTP and I definitely wish the motors were switched. Not sure of the value side of it and I love both motors and I’m sure it’s my ignorance but I tend to think you can get more performance/reliability out of an EVO
 

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1947 FL 1972 XLCH 1989 FLST
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The single stud exhaust flanges were a PITA and expensive to fix.
Years ago Arlen Ness had a tip about the exhaust stud that used a bolt w/nut or set screw which was run into the hole then run a nut down the exposed stud to the flange, it occurs to me the problem I had with the existing stud was with trying to get the exhaust system over the fixed stud. Do not forget your anti-seize.
 

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Years ago Arlen Ness had a tip about the exhaust stud that used a bolt w/nut or set screw which was run into the hole then run a nut down the exposed stud to the flange, it occurs to me the problem I had with the existing stud was with trying to get the exhaust system over the fixed stud. Do not forget your anti-seize.
The fix was to weld three bolt flanges to the heads and pipes. IIRC, the came from a place out in Cali. Flow Heads, or something like that. Then if you had some money to burn, have the chamber welded up and run flat tops. Poor boys like me had to make due with dual plugging the heads
 

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1947 FL 1972 XLCH 1989 FLST
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The fix was to weld three bolt flanges to the heads and pipes. IIRC, the came from a place out in Cali. Flow Heads, or something like that. Then if you had some money to burn, have the chamber welded up and run flat tops. Poor boys like me had to make due with dual plugging the heads
YIKES..that is a lot of weld, also need some long reach plugs haha. I have read that the dual-plugging is the way to go with the Hemi heads due to the shrouded single plug, maybe someone can do this to a Knuckle.
I remember seeing that fix in a Hot Bike rag decades ago, seems the cure was fuglier than the problem!
 

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I let my shovel go (1978 Lowrider) in 1985 to get on an Evo (1985 FXRS...that I'm still riding btw). At that time...in the club I rode with my bike was treated with some disdain by the other guys. ("see no EVO..." and all that). I took it all in stride, being the FNG anyhow. Eventually though...The Word came down to all chapters..."Get your azz on an EVO". Too many issues with those Pans and Shovels guys were riding. Too many problems on long runs keeping the MC off the road so the Boss told everybody to get an EVO and that was that. Now EVO's are becoming "old school", even classics. I've lived through the whole evolution ( see what I did there..??) on the same bike.
Fascinating.
Wait. What "club" with chapters was this? Clearly not a 1%er because as far as actual membership, not hanger-on, it's either prospect or patch w/o any need to abbreviate fucking new guy because **** what anyone thinks and 1 second after accepting that patch teeth hit the floor before disrespect as if patched for years.

Anyways, that part isn't as important as NO serious club would have THAT many bikes breaking down. For HA it doesn't matter what any model of Harley is known for because it's written into their charter that NO member rides a stock Harley. ****, even during the AMF years you'd have to put forth some effort into purposely not caring for your bike to have enough of them break down that club events are impacted. It would almost certainly be written into your own charter to NOT maintain your bikes for that to happen. C'mon now.
 

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Wait. What "club" with chapters was this? Clearly not a 1%er because as far as actual membership, not hanger-on, it's either prospect or patch w/o any need to abbreviate fucking new guy because **** what anyone thinks and 1 second after accepting that patch teeth hit the floor before disrespect as if patched for years.

Anyways, that part isn't as important as NO serious club would have THAT many bikes breaking down. For HA it doesn't matter what any model of Harley is known for because it's written into their charter that NO member rides a stock Harley. ****, even during the AMF years you'd have to put forth some effort into purposely not caring for your bike to have enough of them break down that club events are impacted. It would almost certainly be written into your own charter to NOT maintain your bikes for that to happen. C'mon now.
I didn't realize this site censored speech.
 

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YIKES..that is a lot of weld, also need some long reach plugs haha. I have read that the dual-plugging is the way to go with the Hemi heads due to the shrouded single plug, maybe someone can do this to a Knuckle.
I remember seeing that fix in a Hot Bike rag decades ago, seems the cure was fuglier than the problem!
Well it addressed the flame propagation issue, and it gave you a second plug to foul out. So you got to stop on the side of the road and clean plugs a little less often.
 

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There's no mechanical reason to desire a functionally inferior top end with shorter overhaul intervals coupled with the utter garbage early starter and not very good early transmission. Much love for my traditional Shovels but they're two-wheeled art objects while FXRs (like all rubbermounts) must sacrifice classical styling for improved function (vibration sux) and rigidity With an ugly frame (before they were a fetish FXRs were called Ugly Glides, good for me when I bought mine new) there's no reason to run an art object engine. Stock Evos are much more reliable than stock Shovels which is why I bought my FXR new (the Air Force frowned on not showing up for work). I don't care about the next owner or their wallet or the future so should anything but an immaculate Shovel FXR wander my way the Shovel will go into a proper classic Harley frame, the gearbox etc will go to Ebay and it will get a later engine either aftermarket or built Twinkie or perhaps an M8 for giggles. If I cared about the resale difference I'd have failed at not being poor, but one could set the stock drivetrain in a corner and upgrade without cutting anything (and late bagger donors are plentiful). The same approach is now standard in the car hobby because restomods are more fun to drive, and unlike old HDs which are fundamentally identified by the engine (Knuck, Pan, Shovel) Evo and up are identified by model because the chassis is the major defining characteristic of the bike.

I’ve got an 83 shovel FXR and a 93 EVO FLHTP and I definitely wish the motors were switched.
It would make for a best-of-breed Shovel bagger but I'd get another late Evo gearbox and primary for the FXR too as they're much better parts. They're toys, not sacred shrines to some other guy's dead youth and dreams. Build what make YOU smile. I'd have the Evo in whatever I rode most while a Shovel in the later bagger would be an interesting curiosity.
 
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