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Sportster Motorcycle - Bottom End Cams, Cases, Gears, Flywheel, Piston Conecting Rods, Oil Pump, etc...

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  #1  
Old 26th April 2019
timmyh timmyh is offline
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Sportster/Buell Model: 1200 custom
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Unhappy Cracked housing

Last fall I picked up an '03 Sportster 1200 Anniv Edition from a private seller. Checked it over and did not see any signs of leaks. He seemed like a good guy... Only got to ride a couple of times before the snow flew. Then I noticed a couple of small oil drips on the garage under the oil filter after warming it up, but no noticeable loss of oil and the leak always seemed to stop after cool-down. Thought I'd address it this spring before I started riding and tried tightening the oil pressure switch, which is where it was dripping from. This made the leak worse. So I took the switch out, and since it was working fine I applied some teflon tape to the threads and put it back in thinking it would stop the leak. Again, it made it worse. I figured I needed to change the oil and filter anyway, so replaced both including a new K&N filter and picked up a new switch from a dealer. Buttoned it all back up and fired it up. Still leaking. Now the leak seemed to be coming out from around the filter gasket at the very bottom. I removed the filter and fiddled with the gasket to make sure it was seated correctly and lubed - that's when I noticed a hairline crack running from the milled surface of the housing back to the pressure switch outlet. Full thickness. I'm guessing there was a small crack and torquing the switch to take it out and put it back in a couple of times may have widened it. It still only leaks under pressure while the engine is running, but significantly more now - a steady drip. I have to do something about it (I probably could have left it alone and just cleaned up the couple of drops on the floor every now and then). After checking out a couple of youtube videos extolling the virtues of jb weld it seemed like that might work, but there really is no way to cover the inside or along the milled surface or outlet threads. So I was thinking maybe rub some high temperature silicone gasket seal into the crack across all surfaces. It would take the heat and remain flexible. Might not stop the leak altogether, but at least slow it enough to live with. Any recommendations???
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Old 26th April 2019
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That's going to be a difficult repair because everytime you install the pressure switch you will force the crack open again. Silicone is mostly for low pressure applications. I don't think it will work when it's under pressure. Your best bet would be to use some spray cleaner to get as much oil out of the crack as possible and use some kind of epoxy. Next would be to weld. Good luck.
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  #3  
Old 26th April 2019
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Bruce is a wise man and gives you some options. Please keep in mind the casting has some porosity and for any repair to be effective thoroughly cleaning the are is paramount. The tiny openings will try to hold oil residue. Good luck with this and please keep us posted, thanks.
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Old 26th April 2019
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I would get it welded if it were mine.
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Old 27th April 2019
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Perfect candidate for that 2000 brazing rod. Clean, braze then file flats.
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