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Discussion Starter #41
Here are some pix of the exhaust bracket. I first made a template from a piece of cardboard box; then transferred that to the metal. Then cut the 1/4" x 1-1/4" strap to length and drilled the hole. Then came the torch, hammer and anvil work. Really, a blacksmith's forge would have been just the ticket. Might have to build one of those one day... 20191026_145852.jpg 20191026_180636.jpg 20191026_181947.jpg 20191026_181856.jpg

Pix show the bracket after the 90° bend; then after heat and beat to shape it; and finally installed with a clamp loosely wrapped around it. I started to remove it to correct the angle. But then decided I may bend the header a little bit like I said above. That would put the pipe tight against the bracket there. And if I leave it be, that bracket bending away from the pipe a little bit will prevent the clamp from walking off the end of the bracket. Not that that is a likely scenario...

Now have to decide on painting the bracket with rattle can engine paint - or exhaust paint. One or the other, I guess!
 

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Discussion Starter #43
I see it's been fully 6 months since I've updated this thread. I hate when threads like this go unfinished with no conclusion! As the bike was totaled, I have been doing a lot of other work to it besides upgrading the trans. i'm still not done with the paint job, but I bought a spare front fender which is almost the right color; and a spare pair of bags and lids which are the right color, though the paint isn't in great shape, so I have the bike together enough to ride I took it for a couple of shakedown rides today and sorted out a couple of minor issues.

Issue number one: I had a pretty major oil leak from the dipstick/oil filler spout spacer gasket. Luckily, I was able to get this off without having to remove the pipe and found that I'd put the gasket in upside down. Stupid rookie mistake. Had a spare gasket in stock (though the one I took out probably would have been just fine) and had that back together pretty quick. It took longer for the pipe to cool off enough to work in there than it did to do the job. Subsequent shakedown ride and inspection proved that leak is fixed.

Issue number two: The speedo didn't work at all. I had left the speedo sensor in the stock location, hoping it would read 5th gear and be accurate. False hope. I swapped it to the provided hole in the new trap door, meaning I had to swap the plug and the speedo sensor. Shakedown ride proved the speedo works, but is WAY off. I'm going to have to get a calibration unit for it to fix it.

I am VERY happy to report that this transmission shifts INCREDIBLY SMOOTHLY!!! I'm sure this is owing to the Baker shift drum and Baker shift forks. I have never ridden a Harley with a smoother shifting transmission, new or old. No joke. There's no "clunk" going from neutral to 1st. The 2-3 shift on my 5 speed was always a little more difficult than any of the others. i've had this bike since it had 3,000 miles on it (it now has 117,000) and the 2-3 shift has always been like that. Not anymore. All shifts are absolutely smooth and easy, gets the next gear with a positive "click" but no clunks or other bad noises, and NO SLOP. I won't say I had "concerns," but I was paying close attention to the 5-6 shift, because the 4th shift fork and its shaft required modification. This is detailed earlier in the thread, so I won't repeat it, but I had to machine both the fork and its shaft in order to make the Baker fork work on the Ultima shaft and fit the Ultima gear. Happily, it works just as smoothly as the rest.

6th gear drops the RPM about by about 4-500 at 70 mph. Before you ask how I know I was doing 70 when the speedo doesn't work, I know that 70mph = 3100 rpm on this bike in 5th gear. I, 6th it's now cruising at about 2600. I only rode it a total of maybe 13-15 miles between two shakedown rides, so no highway cruising, though I did get it up to probably 100 at one (brief) point. The trans is smooth at all speeds.

Let's hope this trans is just as durable as the stocker, and doesn't lose any of its good shift quality as the miles pile up. No way for me to know anything about that except to ride it. I will say that I'm using Spectro gear oil as recommended by Baker (I forget what viscosity; I think it's 75/140, but not sure). Ultima makes no specific oil recommendations and I figured this trans is so close a copy of the Baker unit that I ought to follow Baker's advice. So far, if anyone is thinking about whether or not to make this upgrade with the Baker shift parts, I say go for it as long as you have a lathe or a machine shop willing to do such a small job to fit the shaft to the Baker fork. I'm very happy with it so far!
 

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Discussion Starter #44
Oh, and regarding the pipe fit, I ended up heating and bending the pipe a little bit to make it fit properly. This was no big deal at all, and the fit is very good now.
 

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Discussion Starter #45
It's been a long time since I updated this thread. The reason for that is other repairs and upgrades being done before being able to ride. It's now ready to ride and has about 100 miles on it, so I have something to report.

This transmission is WONDERFUL. I'm sure owing to the Baker shift drum and forks, it shifts VERY smoothly. FAR better than the factory 5 speed ever did. I've had this bike since 2002 (it is a 2002) with 3000 miles on it. It now has roughly 117,000 miles. So I have a lot of experience shifting the factory 5 speed. I can't overstate how well this setup shifts!

6th gear: This is just as wonderful! It's not useful below 70 or so mph. 65 is OK as long as it's flat or downhill. At that speed, the engine is running at around 2200 or 2300 rpm in 6th. At 70 it's 2500 or 2600. Above that is where it shines and will be most useful. 80 mph equals 3000 rpm. This is going to be a huge benefit on road trips. High gear in the 5 speed was more like 3300 or 3400 rpm at that speed. Doesn't sound like much, but my gas mileage plummets when the tach is steadily above 3200 rpm. It's like a switch. I can get around 40 mpg if I keep the rpm at or below 3200. Above that and it drops to 30. One time, I ran out of gas on the Northeast Extension at 146 miles after running 85mph for most of those miles. 6th gear should extend my range at fast cruising speeds considerably. For touring with a hot rod motor, the 6 speed is definitely a major improvement!

I gotta jump off the computer so my wife can use it, so that's all for now. I have some more comments, I'll try to get back on later on and leave those.
 

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Discussion Starter #47
OK, here are the rest of my comments on this project:

The instructions that came with this trans leave much to be desired. Compared to S&S product instructions, for example, which are VERY thorough and well written, these suck. Having a factory service manual is a must. It's a must anyway, but especially with something like this which doesn't come with very good instructions. One example of this is the lack of direction regarding the speed sensor. I didn't think of this until just now, but I think product instructions can be downloaded from Baker's website. I bet it would have been helpful to have Baker's installation instructions for the OD6 on hand.

Speed sensor: Initially, I left it in the stock hole. I sorta figured this might not work, but I KNEW the speedo would be off if I put in in the trap door in the spot Ultima provides for it. I figured it MIGHT pick up 5th gear and read the speed accurately since 5th is 1:1 just like the stock one. That did not work, so I switched the plug with the sensor and put the sensor in the trap door. Now my speedo worked, but was WAY off, as expected. I bought a calibration device from 12 O'Clock Labs for $70 and followed their instructions (which are very well written, by the way) and my speedo now reads accurately. Pretty easy fix.

One other thing I am having an issue with: There's a drain plug on the trap door under the clutch cover. I didn't pay it any attention at all when installing the unit. I started paying attention to it when it started leaking while it was on the lift after I'd filled the trans with oil. It was loose. My fault for not looking more thoroughly at the kit before installing it. I snugged it up and it stopped leaking. Well, after 100 or so miles, it's leaking again. I have a little puddle under the bike. So, i'm probably going to have to remove this plug and apply some thread sealant to it. I'm pretty annoyed about this, as it's damned expensive gear oil in there and I don't want to waste it. Not to keep harping on this, but this is another example of the poor instructions. Why is this drain plug here at all anyway? The bike has a drain plug in the oil pan for the trans. Maybe Softails need the trap door drain plug, I don't know. In any case, it would have been nice if it was pointed out and a note about applying thread sealer to it prior to final installation and filling with oil.

That's pretty much it, bitch session over. Overall, I'm extremely happy with this upgrade in spite of my bitching. Thanks to Tall Terry for suggesting upgrading the Ultima 6 speed overdrive trans with Baker shift drum and forks. I never would have tried it without his assurance that it would work. Even with the little bit of machine work I had to do to make the 4th Baker fork fit on the Ultima shaft and gear, it was pretty straightforward, lousy instructions notwithstanding. As I said in my last post, this transmission shifts SO SMOOTHLY I can't believe it. And I LOVE having the 6th gear. Pretty much everywhere I go if I'm riding my myself, I go 70 mph or faster. I live in a rural area and ride rural roads a lot. So I'll use 6th gear a lot. And I anticipate it will save me some gas and therefore extend my range significantly. When I had my 95" motor, I could go damn close to 200 miles on a tank of gas (stock 5 gallon tank). Not with the 107"! I'm hoping to have that range again.
 
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