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I ran my 88 for 49,000 miles with the org tensioners and at over 50,000 still has the org stator
 

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Bon temps rouler!
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685 Posts
I'm convinced that Harley Davidson Motorcycles will run for as long as you want them too! These motors/motorcycles are so easy to fix, alter, customize, that I believe my bikes will outlast me.

I've owned metrics, yes they would probably run forever but there are not nearly as many options for customization or performance enhancement, and to me they are like sitting on a machine void of personality.

Give me my Harley any day, it shakes, vibrates, backfires, bottoms out at times, and is held together by loctite, but I know that I'm riding a machine with personality and not a sterile copy.
 

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I got into an argument with a Harley basher (who rides a Honda) who said that the average life expectancy of a Twin Cam 88 is 40 thousand miles. I argued, but had nothing to back it up. I've owned three Harley's and never had any engine (or trans) problems, but none of them have gone over 25K before I bought the next.

Assuming regular maintainence, average riding conditions and no engine mods (except the Harley tax), what's your experience/opinion?
I have rode rice before but if ya want the the bike that everyone tries to duplicate, make the sound the same and design
HARLEY IS KING.

I have a 2000 FXST with way over 120,000 KMS - 80,000 miles
Its still got the original drive belt the engine is untouched and thats including the tensioners. All I have ever done is the general maintenance - plugs - air cleaner - and oils its been a breeze!

As far as I see it metrics will never be what a Harley is but I dont judge anyone for riding one ... the most important thing is at least they have their face in the wind but in the same breath dont stick your face in mine and try and tell me they are superior to a HARLEY
 

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glodigger
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442 Posts
Well being one who rides long distants I think the problem of cam tentioners is a big deal. At 27,000 broke down last memoral day in the middle of no where mid west.
A shop [non HD none around for 300 miles and closed on mon] only had gear cam replacement. Now have to reinstall chain cam for warrenty.
I wont trade for the more reliable *** bike but its bull that a new bike has that kind of problem and its not a new but continueing one.

IT IS A BIG DEAL
 

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My personal observations over the past 7 years of harley ownership is that the typical harley rider pushes these bikes too hard. We all know this bike is an air-cooled push rod v-twin that is designed to go the long haul if maintained and ridden within the framework of reliability. Push anything too hard and it will break. I commonly see people who simply can't get to 60 fast enough or refuse to follow anything on the interstate. Again, these bikes aren't built to withstand that kind of abuse. The abuse exposes inherent weaknesses in the design and all designs have inherent weaknesses. Changing the oil at 2500 mile intervals won't prevent the failures and is a complete waste of lubricant considering most of us use fully synthetic products that can easily go 3 to 4 times that mileage number without endangering our bikes. Increased hp and torque only adds to the fragility of engines especially the harley engine. Typically, the folks that do modify their motors, are the most guilty of abusing their bikes. Please make know attempt to deny this. Its ludicrous. I suppose there may be someone out there that is capable of saving all that extra power for just the right moment but 99.9% of you don't fit that profile. I love my road king. In fact, I consider it the best bike I've ever owned. I ride it within its capabilites and maintain is according to the hd manual. Now, if something breaks, I'm going to blame it on all of you for spreading all these bad vibes on internet sites. Now go ride your bike and have fun.
 

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I'm from the old school I use dino oil and thus oil changes are every 2500 miles.
Every bike I've owned has a box stock engine, it has plenty of power.
Because each one has been a daily driver and used in the rough environment of stop and go traffic, fluids are changed more often. While some may consider it a waste, I call it protecting my investment and only form of transportation.
I've owned Harley Davidson Motorcycles since I was 16 years old and I'm 55 now and I've taken care of each and every one of them and they've never been a problem and have required necessary repairs.
 

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My 03 is now at 102,000 miles. Oil changes at 10,000 miles using Amsoil. I did a big bore & change to gear cams at 33k. Didnt need anything but the gear drive. Rest was for me. Original stator is still in it also. Belt changed this winter for own piece of mind. Old one still looked OK. Just a job done much cheaper at home then on the road. I like my TC.
 

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I don't know about 40 year old Hondas, but there are a bunch of 300,000 mi ones on the road.

Not all Honda riders are H-D bashers, H-D makes great bikes.:cheers:
A hd with 300,000 miles is still easier and cheaper to overhaul than a h0nda with 300,000 miles, even when you pay for 2 (for the hd). Most people just throw the honda away.
 

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almost all tc-88 had the cam chain shoes go out at 30k, then a stator at 40 to 50
Really? Then I am 30 to 20 thousand over do. I first looked at the tensioners at 50 kmi, not even half wore. And I run my charging system maxed in the winter.
 

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i have had two modern harley's (my first love was a '73 superglide which doesn't count since it was stolen before it got 15,000 on it). the first was a 2001 std soft tail and i rode it for 40,000 worry free miles. sold it and i hope it is still running all i did was get the 10,000 mile service and change the oil my self at 5,000 miles..
the second is my 2005 electraglide. put it in the shop yesterday for the 90,000 service and they suggested a look at the tensioners. the front was good and the back one was at that point where one says whew just in time. changed over to the hydraulic system and am set for another worry free 90,000 miles. all i have ever done is do the 10,000 mile service and change oil myself at 5,000 miles. like the previous gentleman suggested i do not run rampant but tool on down the road at 70 mph (although some days i kick it up to 78 to 80 just to keep from setting it in). have ridden other bikes over the years and have had victories shown me but a harley to me is just me. like my levi jeans. other wear wrangler and jc penny jeans but only levi jeans fits my butt so it goes with harley's only they fit my butt.
 

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I got bashed for buying a versys kwaka for a work hack by someone who rides a woosey scooter WTF.

Hey all to thier own a ride is a ride, be a boring place if there was only one make and model.
 

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2004 Ultra classic 88 c.i; > 60.000 miles, oil-change every 5.000 miles, nothing broke down, still original belt.
The only parts expected to be replaced the chain-tensioners.
Life expectancy: 120.000 miles before a rebuilt ?
 

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126,000kms (80K Miles) on my 2006 FLHTCUI so far. Cam chain tensioners were worn out of spec around 45K miles, replaced them with the new hydraulic style used in the TC96 motors. Stator failed at the end of last season. Going to replace HD stator/reg with Cycle Electric kit this Winter, as well as replace the original drive belt.

All service done by myself or a expert independant. I don't ride hard throttle-wise, but I do ride in endurance rallies... 18-19 hour riding days, 1000 miles or more per day, etc.
 
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