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I have owned 2 sportsters in the past...both evolution engines a 1996 Hugger and a 1999..I guess you figured it out that I am a liitle vertically challenged.....I've owned Japanese cruisers as well as Japanese Sportbikes ( read very fast )a Bmw and a Ducati monster.....the bikes I loved the most were the Sporster...the Ducati 750 Monster and my current bike a Bmw r850r roadster...I loved them because they were'nt perfect but they had character...unlike many of the near perfect Japanese bikes....the Monster idled roughly and was tempermental...the Bmw was definately quirky looking and the Sporster was an authentic Harley not a clone but it vibtated too much....which finally brings me to my question...The vibration levels in both of my Sportsters were very high ...the 98 was worse than the 96....I wnat to get anothern Sporty but i am still worried about the vibration levels...is there anything that can be done or is Harley-Davisdson finally going to change the engine and re-do the bike for 2004....I have heard it's long overdue and all the other harley models (although I like the sportster the most ) have newer more modern engines...should I wait or take a chance and buy now...sorry for the long trant but thanks for your responses in advance....look forward to being on board as I am a new member. p.s. ..i never had a problem worrying about what some ignorant misinformed individuals thought about my sporsters...they are what they are ..not fast.. not able touring bikes ...just pure fundemental , practical motorcycles...i like to thing of them as real bikes.
 

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Panzerboy,

First off, welcome to the forum. You will find a lot of good information here.

Now to your question. I think it's the nature of the beast for a Harley to vibrate. I think any 45 degree vtwin will have some vibration. One of the reasons that a Sportster has as much vibration as it does is because the engine is rigid mounted in the frame. I don't know of any plans that Harley has in mind for changes to the Sportsters as of yet. I personally like the vibration but others don't.

Ride safe
 

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There are a few things that can be done to quill some of the vibbes. Beside the type of seat, bars and pegs used one can look at the engine. A DFI dampener, a re balanced crank and ported heads with the right exhaust all can make a Sporty as smooth as Dyans up to 60 MPH or about 3500 rpms. Its alot of work, the easyest way is to find a smoother running bike to start with. Not all Harley's created equal. Some are smother than others (in the same line up) just the mass production thing.


As far as the new Sporster, everyone knows it will happen, but when is the question. No need for 2003 as the 100th year thing will help sales, but you may be right for 2004. Harley wont say alot because it would hurt Sporty sales this year.
 

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Welcome Panzerboy,
There are quite a few products available to reduce Sportster vibrations. Do a web search and check ads in the Harley mags. I found a company called Fisher that makes a damper that is installed in the engine. There is also a company called Balance Masters. And another called Hayden. Here are the website addresses:
www.balancemasters.com
www.fisherconcepts.com
www.haydensm6.com

Let me know what you find and decide to go with.

later,
KrustyTC
 

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I dont know what type of ignition system (dual fire ??) your sporty's use. But with mine (a '73 w/points & condensor), I changed it to a electronic single fire system. If I had to guess I lost 40% of vibration at highway speeds. Maybe the points were just junk, I dont know. Somebody else might have a similar experience with a newer bike that can post their thought on this.

Buzz
 
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