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'05 Road King Classic
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806 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I've read with great fascination the threads dealing with the cam tensioner issue. I talked to Harris about this a bit and also to my local dealer and here is what I've come up with:

-This is a VERY important item to check but it is NOT on the scheduled list of items to check by the MoCo.

-This is definately a wear item that will cause serious problem(s) in the future though when that future arrives is not well known.

-The dealer suggested to check/replace as stock, if that is what you want, every 15-20k miles for about $550 out the door. Or put in the gear mechanism for $1,500-2,000 out the door and forget about it.

-Yes, the motorcycle is a mechanical beast and anything can go wrong, but why something that gets so much wear and could cause so much trouble and is not documented by the MoCo so the average non-wrench HD owner would know about it is beyond my understanding. I give huge credit to this forum for bringing up such problems for the less mechanically inclined, such as myself, to know about and take action on.

-I asked the wrench at the dealer if he recognized this as a legitimate problem and he said he did. I then asked are there any other undocumented "mechanical time bombs" lurking in my '05 Road King Classic that I should know about? He basically said no, so I'll go with that for now.

-My main point about all of this is that unless I found out about this potential problem on this forum I would have no idea it existed, nor would I have had any reason to check the cam tensioner (Heck, I didn't even know what a cam tensioner was until yesterday!), my dealer wasn't obligated to inform me (even though they know about it (maybe even documented by the MoCo)), but I would have found out about it the hard way somewhere out in the middle of nowhere just past my warranty period because us average Joes don't have access to such information.

-So, are there any other 'undocumented' mechanical time bombs I should be aware of?
Thanks,
Dennis E.
 

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Ironbutt
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deisenbraun said:
Or put in the gear mechanism for $1,500-2,000 out the door and forget about it.
Don't know where you came up with this price but you can switch to gear driven cams for a lot less than this. I recently priced installing an Andrews set-up for my Heritage. It'll cost around $650 for everything - that's parts and labor at my Indy shop.
 

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'05 Road King Classic
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806 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
miles to go said:
Don't know where you came up with this price but you can switch to gear driven cams for a lot less than this. I recently priced installing an Andrews set-up for my Heritage. It'll cost around $650 for everything - that's parts and labor at my Indy shop.
Miles,

That is just the price the HD dealer quoted. I don't mean to suggest that it is a good price or the only price, but what I would have to pay in my area to have the HD dealer do it for me if that is what I wanted. Doing it yourself or having a good, trusted independent would certainly bring the price down I would think.

Dennis E.
 

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DHARMA Initiative
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I love my Evo. :sofa: :xhere:
 

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i understand that HD finally fixed this problem with the 2006 dyna engine that they will be installing in all of the 2007 vtwins.
 

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George C said:
The problem has been adressed since the 2004 model.
The tensioners are a moot point for those with late model bikes..

Uhhhhhh, somebody forgot to tell my '05 bike that those tensioners were fixed in '04 then.

Mechanic said my one tensioner fell apart when he was taking it off, so it couldn't have had too many more miles on it.

darrell
 

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Premium Member
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miles to go said:
Don't know where you came up with this price but you can switch to gear driven cams for a lot less than this. I recently priced installing an Andrews set-up for my Heritage. It'll cost around $650 for everything - that's parts and labor at my Indy shop.

Wow. Where is you Indy shop located? $650 for andrew cams, gears, and
labor.
 

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George C said:
The problem has been adressed since the 2004 model.
The tensioners are a moot point for those with late model bikes..
Who the he11 are you and where do you come up with some of this off the wall crap you puke out here on a daily basis?
Sorry mods, this goerge c always seems like he's trying to stir something up and I just hit the wall with his crap!!
Most of us here are legitimately trying to learn here....
 

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here in ny, approx. $1200 for harley to do geared cams, indy wants 1500 to put in geared cams, with tuning hsr42 and dyno run. So I don't think that price is way out of line with reality, not a fair price, but not out of line.
 

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'05 Road King Classic
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806 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Sorry, I really didn't mean this to turn into a "cam tensioner" thread, though it is still interesting. What I would really like to know is if there are any other serious problems lurking out there, like the cam tensioner issue, of which the average biker owner is unaware?

Thanks,
Dennis E.
 

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somebody on this forum said it best, just go out and ride the damn thing! If you have a warranty ride it like you stole it, if not, well ride it like that anyway, yes I am happy I learned about the tensioners on this forum (thanks all), but its going to be 60 this weekend, and I didn't get the job done yet, and you know I am going ridin' this weekend, if it blows it blows!!!!!
 

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Infidel
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MegaGlide said:
Syphilis is making a comeback.
Yeah, but the MoCo has all the kinks worked out of it so it ain't the problem it used to be. :D
 

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XLIII
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wyodude said:
Yeah, but the MoCo has all the kinks worked out of it so it ain't the problem it used to be. :D
Yeah, well, that's what they say, but a pharmaceutical engineer who knows what he's talking about told me their Pen3 "synthetic" tetracycline is not 100% synthetic.
 

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adlerx said:
Who the he11 are you and where do you come up with some of this off the wall crap you puke out here on a daily basis?
Sorry mods, this goerge c always seems like he's trying to stir something up and I just hit the wall with his crap!!
Most of us here are legitimately trying to learn here....
Nice attack. Very telling.



Others, here is my point:
First, the cam tensioner issue reminds me of Quaker State Oil. A bad batch ruined some engines, and it took 30 years for the public to accept QS again..
The title of the thread was Mechanical Time Bomb. I just wanted to point out that it is not entirely accurate.
Newbies read this, and are led to believe that cam tensioners are going to ruin their motors. Some of you guys believe that, but for the 1/1000 of 1% of the Harley riding public that visits an internet forum, most come to investigate a problem they are having, which makes it look like the whole world is littered with TC engines. The rest of the planet's riders are enjoying their bikes for thousands of trouble free miles because they aren't having any problems at all. This site is a harley magnifying glass, and you have to take that into consideration.

If you guys want to replace your chain drives for gears, that's a nice upgrade, but not something that's life or death. Just check the tensioners during service intervals and the sun will come up tomorrow.
For what it's worth, the tensioner issue is blown way out of proportion. There was a legit problem, and MoCo admits that, but like any major company, they'd rather not spend the money to do what's right, and that's a total recall. After I investigated the problems, and made some various calls, the plastic compound was changed, chain polished, and according to my dealer in 2004 where the new tensioners, while still not perfect, should last upwards of 30K before replacing. It seems most sources agree with this.

So, go ahead and change to gear drives. never a bad idea, just not a life and death thing.
 

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EASY DOES IT
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swodo said:
How was the tensioner problem addressed in the 2004 models?
If it was, can it retrofit?
It was not...just a "new and improved" way to wear 'em out...get the gears and be done with it...otherwise figure on checking/opening the cam chest at ever increasing intervals 'til about 30k, replace them...start the process over again!!!
 

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Ironrdr said:
Uhhhhhh, somebody forgot to tell my '05 bike that those tensioners were fixed in '04 then.

Mechanic said my one tensioner fell apart when he was taking it off, so it couldn't have had too many more miles on it.

darrell

I'm interested if you saw your tensioner with your own eyes?
 
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