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  #1  
Old 8th May 2013
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Default Question for those that use atf in primary

I know asking lubrication questions can be food for a huge debate so I just want to know from the members here that use atf what do you use brand wise and if anyone has used royal purple max atf ?

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  #2  
Old 8th May 2013
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'77 Ironhead....Last year I switched to DEXRON III (only because I had a couple quarts in the garage that I wasn't going to use). Didn't notice any significant changes but chose ATF because of a recommendation from and old Ironhead guy. He prefers Type F.

DEXRON is ok, but... it has friction modifiers and is made more for smoother shifting (in car trans.). Type F is basically dyed mineral oil and shifts harder in car trans.

My era of Ironhead (mid-late '70s) has a terrible clutch design and does have a tendencay to slip @ high rpms. The earlier IH clutches had more surface area to their plates. In the '70s, the plates were smaller (narrower on the face...NOT the width) and have less suface area. I believe this is why they slip.

Anyway, this year I opted for B & M Trick Shift...this is a Type F fluid. I chose this because it is marketed to have harder (firmer) shifts and gets better "lock-up" in car transmissions. I don't have enough miles yet this year to give final results ....but the clutch has NOT slipped yet. So far I am pleased.

I was told that B & M was called "Blue Death" back in the day because it would kill transmissions. I am ignoring that warning for now and trying it anyway.

My recommendations would be Type F or a similar fluid that does not have friction modifiers and is made for firmer shifting.

I have seen HD's Formula + and have no opinion either way. If you don't want to try ATF, then I would suggest Formula +.

My reasons (for ATF) are... HD shops are few and far between.. If you are on a road trip and need fluid in an emergency (or just to top off), how close to an HD shop will you be? ATF is more readily available and can be found at auto parts stores and Walmarts, etc.
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  #3  
Old 8th May 2013
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I use atf in my manual and auto transmissions and I always have a case on hand and I have a minor clutch slippage with the sportster and my atf of choice is royal purple max atf .


The proof is in trying it I guess it could always be changed to something else later .

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Old 9th May 2013
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Well it slipped for the first time with B & M Trick Shift. I am not surprised, no fluid out there would correct this condition. It was just a poor clutch design.

I still recommend ATF over motor oil in the primary. Stick to conventional, no synthetics and no additives.

ATF because is was meant to be run on wet clutches. Motor oil is for lubrication and cooling only. ATF has detergents and anti-foaming agents. Oil does not.

I frown on synthetics because they have additives that promote slippage (friction modifiers/"smoother shifitng types" . You DON'T want ANY slippage on your motorcycle clutch.

Why RP Max ATF ? Not knocking you or it, just curious.

Hope others pipe in on this. I would like to hear more comments/opinions.
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Old 9th May 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KickerD View Post
Well it slipped for the first time with B & M Trick Shift. I am not surprised, no fluid out there would correct this condition. It was just a poor clutch design.

I still recommend ATF over motor oil in the primary. Stick to conventional, no synthetics and no additives.

ATF because is was meant to be run on wet clutches. Motor oil is for lubrication and cooling only. ATF has detergents and anti-foaming agents. Oil does not.

I frown on synthetics because they have additives that promote slippage (friction modifiers/"smoother shifitng types" . You DON'T want ANY slippage on your motorcycle clutch.

Why RP Max ATF ? Not knocking you or it, just curious.

Hope others pipe in on this. I would like to hear more comments/opinions.
Really just becsuse I already have it on hand but I may just use some standard atf .doing the fuid change on Saturday so we will see how it works then

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Old 9th May 2013
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I've been running bm trick shift for a couple years. Only clutch problems I've had were from the factory spring plate and then just recently from installing the stack improperly when I switched to an aftermarket clutch.
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When I replaced my clutch with Energy One, they recommended Type F ATF. I pressed a bit and this is what I was told: They prefer B&M Trick Shift as their ATF of choice. Although any good quality, brand name Type F is good. They also recommended not to use HD SynIII in the primary as it is pretty slick and they had experienced issues with clutch slippage. Nothing bad to say about the SynIII but the potential was there.
I have used the B&M for 2-3 years and have not had any issues. That said, I believe the Formula + is good too!! Just make sure you use a good oil!!!
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Old 12th May 2013
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Trick shift is one of the more popular ATf's used in this application. The old ford spec Type F is also highly regarded and is reputed to be less apt to slip than the more common formulation.
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Old 12th May 2013
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I've used nothing but HD's Formula +. Never had any problems.

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Old 12th May 2013
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I've got a couple thousand miles on my last change, I went with Amsoil Super Shift and have been happy with it. Clutch feels good, shifting is smoother than it has ever been and just based on the feel of my calf against the derby cover, temps are a little lower. Granted, all three of those statements are hard to back up or quantify. I ran stock fluid until I burned out the clutch, then switched to ATF type F for a few thousand miles before going with Super Shift.

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