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Man I see a ton of questions about cams.What is surprising is that we don't quote specs.(duration,lobe lift.lobe separation,centerlines,ect.) just brand names and part numbers.Remember Andrews.HQ.S+S,Crane.red shift ect. ALL grind good cams what makes a bad cam is a bad choise.All to often we pick a cam to big for the applaction.Or make choise based on a friends experience not looking at the differences between bikes.Something as small as rider weight or 1/2 point in C.R. will affect cam choise.Not mention things like coil bind,retainer to seal clearence,spring pressures,case clearence and more.When compairing cams it is good to get feedback from someone who has used that cam just have all the facts in front of you,make sure you are compairing apples and apples.A good cam grinder will spend the time with you to ask the important questions to best insure you get the right cam.Cam choise can be tricky.Most of us only get one shot to get it right.
Big Al
 

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Nightrider has almost all of the cam specs, they just updatd them recently.

I agree 100% you have to take everything into consideration . I talked with many here as well as the folks at Andrews , and Bob Woods before making my choice.
 

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Incredible
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@gree: Just listening to someone here say 37G 37G 37G over and over is not the reason to select a 37G or a TW5G cam. You have to decide what is best for your application, riding style, and over all expectation. You can only do that based on checking out the cam specs of each cam before making a final decision. That is why I finally went with a Woods cam, I did a lot of research and based on my motor build it was the best for my engine.
 

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Probably has a lot to do with the fact that to a good many who read these forums the specs don't really mean much to them. The bulk of the HD world is based on "recipe" and "cookie cutter" types of builds. That may sound harsh, and there is really nothing wrong with that as long as the "recipe" was good (and the right one for the application to start with) and it's followed exactly. All too often, well meaning but badly mis-informed "experts" try to create their own "recipe" and either get lucky and have moderate success or just "embellish" the truth a bit and before ya know it there is a new "hot setup" that has everyone champing at the bit to try out --- often with less than desirable results. Mix and match may be fine for selecting a wardrobe, it seldom works well for building a really good motor. For those that don't have the time, equipment, and knowledge to do it right --- find someone who does! It's important to know enough so that someone can't blow smoke up yer arse, sticking with reputable builders or vendors with known track records is the best bet for most, myself included. If one is inclined to venture off into the minefield of high performance then they had best start getting educated and plan on having lots of additions to the "not such a good idea" pile just like the rest of the people who have managed to rise above the rest. There are some heavy dues to pay, anyone that doesn't think so is fooling themselves. MY $0.02
 

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Infidel
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@gree:
I think you've hit the nail on the head...most people don't know anything about what a cams specification means and the relationship to the other parts in a build. But, that's the value of a forum like this, the uneducated can benefit from the knowing and hopefully make a better decision come time to build their dream machine.
 

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I too did not know anything about cams. I did hear some worked better then others, but through this forum, learned that it is all about the package. When I was done with my "package", I had a 98 kit with 9.8/1 compression, ported heads, and G-37 cams. My bike puts out 92 hp and 107 fpt. The torque is 100+ from about 2,200 rpm up to 5,000. So, don't just think about cams. Think about the entire project. Cams are important, and so is compression, and so are your heads, and so is your exhaust. Each one by themselves, won't do much at all, but all put in harmony makes a V-Twin purr...


Best of luck,



Stan
 

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Stashu11 said:
...Cams are important, and so is compression, and so are your heads, and so is your exhaust. Each one by themselves, won't do much at all, but all put in harmony makes a V-Twin purr.../
...to which I'd add "meticulous assembly" and "tuning."
 

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Lazy 98
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Wise words...

vtwin_nut said:
Probably has a lot to do with the fact that to a good many who read these forums the specs don't really mean much to them. The bulk of the HD world is based on "recipe" and "cookie cutter" types of builds. That may sound harsh, and there is really nothing wrong with that as long as the "recipe" was good (and the right one for the application to start with) and it's followed exactly. All too often, well meaning but badly mis-informed "experts" try to create their own "recipe" and either get lucky and have moderate success or just "embellish" the truth a bit and before ya know it there is a new "hot setup" that has everyone champing at the bit to try out --- often with less than desirable results. Mix and match may be fine for selecting a wardrobe, it seldom works well for building a really good motor. For those that don't have the time, equipment, and knowledge to do it right --- find someone who does! It's important to know enough so that someone can't blow smoke up yer arse, sticking with reputable builders or vendors with known track records is the best bet for most, myself included. If one is inclined to venture off into the minefield of high performance then they had best start getting educated and plan on having lots of additions to the "not such a good idea" pile just like the rest of the people who have managed to rise above the rest. There are some heavy dues to pay, anyone that doesn't think so is fooling themselves. MY $0.02

This is exactly why I came to the forums. I was once told that you can waste a lot of good money messing with engines if you don't know what you're doing. Then, with a small amount of mechanical ability, I started along the learning curve--like blowing a connecting rod into a pretzel, shattering the bottom of the piston and cylinder, and ruining my crank and bearings, and almost the case, too! Oh yeah, and what's valve train geometry? You mean you can't just slap a huge lumpy cam in there and go?!:huh:

The problem with a lot of parts people is that they just want to sell you parts, and they really don't have any understanding of the relationships that components have with each other under various operating setups. "oh yeah, brah, that gives you more power--oh yeah, and try this, too! It's mean!":nunu:

So now, I listen, learn, and ask people who have bigger "not so good idea piles" than I do. Thanks for keeping me out of trouble with the most expensive toy I've ever had!:beer4u:
 

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Nice to ride again :-)
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vtwin_nut said:
If one is inclined to venture off into the minefield of high performance then they had best start getting educated and plan on having lots of additions to the "not such a good idea" pile just like the rest of the people who have managed to rise above the rest. There are some heavy dues to pay, anyone that doesn't think so is fooling themselves. MY $0.02
@gree:
High performance in any form is costly. I think you make the best point of all. People need to ACCEPT the risk of high performance BEFORE they get into it. They are prone to breaking things and that is a fact. You need to compensate for the extra stress and wear and tear, which increases maintenance and cost. In my opinion a guy who is running a high compression, aggressive cam, and likes to twist the throttle, should be able to turn his own wrench or have plenty of disposable income.

And if you are relying on a forum to help sort your build out then be damn sure you can trust the advice of those who give it. And make damn sure the recipe you are cooking is really what you are hungry for.
 

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sometimes, I have been accused of asking too many questions about a subject. OK w/things like carbs, exhaust etc, but knowledge of cams, ie: overlap, lobe sep. angle, intake closing was a foreign language. Thanks to this forum, I have gotten a lot of feedback to put me in right direction to help me improve my build. If you have good independent shops near you w/a wrench you can trust, consider yourself lucky. I recently had a hd mech. ask me what cam I had in my prior dresser as it ran so strong and he was having problems figuring out a cam so he would have better for low end in his own bike.
 

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i lucked out, i looked at cams, put some 203s in my dyna. if they give low end and mid range on a big bike then it should work real good on a 650 lb. dyna. yep i'm happy.
 

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I have stage 1 and a 203 SE cam...with Cycle Shack Exhaust...very nice!

Perfect for my likes.

2006 FXSTC

Ride Safe!
 

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I am going to have to agree with LAF. If you want high compression and big power from radical cams, then you should have some sort of ability to wrench. It will come apart.

Cams are truly a mistery to most people. I often wonder why people over look items such as changing the compensator sprocket one tooth lower to gain performance? It is a cheap way to gain performance if you don't plan on cruising across the country. I am assuming that they are wanting power when you wack the throttle. Most people give it the gas so they can hear the motor roar. A big cam won't do that for you without much more work. Unless you have time to wait for it to come to life. Just a thought though.
 

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IronButt
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I will make this short and sweet.

I ask plenty of questions about the bike rider weight, region, gas octane, type of riding, and so on

All of this plus what the customer is looking for as a final result, from there you can choose a cam that will offer that to the customer. The cam now chossen will set the tone for compression and the final parts to complete the build.


I always take the time to listen to the customer to see what they want not what I have to sell.
 
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