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Sportster Motorcycle Motor - Top End Discuss Sportster Motorcycle Top End issues. Rockerboxes, Valves, Cylinders, Pistons, Rings, Lift Rods, etc...

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  #11  
Old 1 Week Ago
Jonzilla Jonzilla is offline
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https://youtu.be/EkHFVVh1Gxo

Alright, here is a short video of cold start up yesterday. I let the engine die but you can at least hear the tone of this ugly noise. It totally goes away after 10 minutes or so.
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  #12  
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I didn't hear any issue until the idle fell below normal

Is this your first Sportster? They are noisy compared to many other bikes.
Do you have friends with older Sportsters to compare or get a local opinion?

Just for a clearer picture - Is the 1200 upgrade using stock 1200 heads with flat-top pistons? Or are you using 883 dished pistons with the stock 883 heads?

Did you retard the ignition timing after the conversion? At a minimum, that is really necessary.

HammerPerf.com says: "Bottom line, if you have an 86-03, and you're just doing a basic conversion, and you're real tight on funds, you can get away with just retarding your timing per the instructions, although it's certainly not optimal."

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jonzilla View Post
Compression test just done at full temp:
Front cylinder 165psi
Rear cylinder 162psi
While those numbers are good, does this mean you did the compression test AFTER THE NOISE WENT AWAY?

If so, you might want to do another comp test when the engine is cold - just to see if there is some variation between cylinders when the noise you hear is actually happening (lifter not pumping up, etc.)...

For normal reference purposes, you DO want to take the reading when the engine is fully warmed up - but for diagnostic purposes, you want to take the reading when the issue is present...


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Last edited by IXL2Relax; 1 Week Ago at 14:01..
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  #13  
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Jonzilla Jonzilla is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IXL2Relax View Post
I didn't hear any issue until the idle fell below normal

Is this your first Sportster? They are noisy compared to many other bikes.
Do you have friends with older Sportsters to compare or get a local opinion?



Does this mean you did the compression test AFTER THE NOISE WENT AWAY?
If so, you might want to do another comp test when the engine is cold - just to see if there is some variation between cylinders when the noise you hear is actually happening...


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Yes the compression test was after the noise was gone . Will check again this evening. This is my first Sportster. All the other guys I know have newer sportsters and they do not sound like mine.

I did retard the timing like Hammer recommends. About .090" CC I believe is what they say.

Since I don't have have a tach so I'm not sure what idle rpm I typically run. Would you say the beginning of that video normal idle speed? That was with the choke pulled out. Thanks.
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  #14  
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When I cold start my '94 with the 'choke' pulled out, it idles a little faster than that - but not much...

As is often said on this forum, the Sportster is not like a BT that can have a lumpy idle - when warm, it needs to idle near 1000 RPMs to be smooth and responsive... Before fully warm, you want a bit higher idle, maybe 1200-1300 RPMs... But don't just let it sit & idle when using the enrichener - ride off within 1-minute to warm the engine while riding...

Let's see what others think of the video sound... Maybe they can hear some issue that I didn't...

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  #15  
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Collapsed lifter(s) on front side.....?
The tapping noise is double time with RPM.
Around 0:18, the tapping skips a beat before the engine dies.
Did you soak the lifters before installing them?
Using old or new ones?
Old heads or new heads (translate to old valves or new valves)?
Since the noise is there at exhaust flange, it could be a sticky valve.
Any oil residue in the head if you were to pull the pipes and shine a light in there?
This still could be a non oiling issue. Need to check oil pressure when hot.
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  #16  
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These are 883 heads with Wiseco .020 over reverse dome pistons. I lapped the old valves and cleaned them up while they were off. No witness marks or anything bent that I could see. I didn't touch the lifters. They are probably original. I don't know the total mileage on this bike since it had now speedo when I bought it so I assume it is around 1 million lol.

The heads were pretty dirty since the bike was running very rich when I bought it. No goopy oil residue though, just black sooty carbon residue. I rebuilt the carb early on and took care of that.

I ordered a pair of OEM lifters yesterday just to try on the front. I will soak them before install.
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  #17  
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What gaskets did you use? Did you check your squish? I had a bike in the past that was knocking piston to the head when cold but was quiet when hot.
Turned out that the squish was too tight, around .025".
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  #18  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Randy_rots View Post
What gaskets did you use? Did you check your squish? I had a bike in the past that was knocking piston to the head when cold but was quiet when hot.
Turned out that the squish was too tight, around .025".
Cometic MLS gasket set. .030 head gasket. I admit I did not check the squish. I did check that the piston didn't raise up beyond the head gasket surface of the cylinder so I doubt that the piston is contacting the head. But I could be wrong. I have a feeling this thing is coming back apart
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  #19  
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I had an issue with my last build wear it would tick until it got hot. Turned out to be because bronze valve guides were used and were cut shorter than normal. The rockers with the way they go up and down and the end is like your finger tip so as it pushes on the valve it also puts a sideways force on it as well and it caused the valve guides to wear out inside like an hour glass shape which let the valves move side to side and I also had heavy duty springs which used wider spring retainers than the bee-hive springs which most likely added to the sideways force put on the valves when the retainer hit the rocker box which was clearanced. So the valve spring retainers would hit the rocker box top until it got warm. I don't know why it would usually go away when it warmed up. I changed back to the stock style valve guides and bought roller rockers and never had the issue again. The roller rockers also seemed to help quiet down the little bit of noise I had from the top end as well.
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No shame in pulling it apart again.
Several of us have pulled a new build apart multiple times to settle noises or questions.

I keep going back to the video and I believe I'd go in and do some exploratory surgery if it were mine.
Check for witness marks on the pistons and valves.
You can get an inspection camera from Harbor Freight to send down the spark plug holes and look around.
I've seen pics of an air cleaner screw that got loose and sucked in onto a piston.
(beating between the piston and head, no valve or compression problems)
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