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  #1  
Old 2 Weeks Ago
blk80bike blk80bike is offline
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Default Correct screw size for 1980 points cover replacement

For some reason I just can't find a clear answer on what size screw replaces the two 3/16"rivets for the timing cover for an 80 sportster.
Clearly various inner covers were used depending on the year prompting answers of 8-32 or 10-24 or 10-32 when researching this. .
Apparently, most the inner covers have smaller holes to accommodate the smaller 8 or 10 size screws when swapping rivets for screws.
Having spent a reasonable amount of time trying to get a straight answer I've learned that size #8 is absolutely to small for the inner cover on a 1980 and although a 10-32 tap is closer in size it doesn't produce deep enough threads to allow the use on a 10-32 screw.
Perhaps because this is the first year that electronic ignition was introduced. I'm not sure how that really effects the cover plate hole size but apparently it does as the parts manual shows the cover as part# 32504-80 which only begins in 1980 on the sportster In fact my parts manual clearly shows that the 1979 model doesn't even have an inner cover and the outer cover simply screwed into threaded holes on the ignition module assembly itself.

Has anyone here personally swapped the rivets for screws on an 80 or 81? Since the next step up is a #12 screw I'm thinking maybe its a 12-24 course or 12-28 for more finer threads. If I jump up to a 1/4-28 that just seems to big of a screw..
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Sorry, I don't have hands-on that model... but...

If, after removing the rivets, you are rotating the outer cover so the rivet holes now line up with the inner cover mounting studs (atop the timing plate), then the screws that held the inner cover in place are the right size (likely to be 8/32" threads) to use screws that go thru the outer cover, thru the inner cover & into the studs.

You may have to buy screws with a different style head that properly fit the outer cover.

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I am thinking that the original rivets were 1/8 in not 3/16. Is it possible that the original rivets have been drilled out and then replaced by larger rivets?
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A 3/16 pilot hole would be appropriate for a number 12 screw and fine threads would be appropriate.
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Thanks for the replys...

The thing is I didn't want to rotate the cover as some do, to allow the outer cover to mount through the same screw holes the inner cover uses to secure it. That decision is just cosmetic because I don't want the AMF #1 emblem on the plate to be mounted sideways. I suppose I could peel it off and re-glue it back on after rotating it 90 degrees... but as these tiny emblems are now going for about $20-25 each, I wouldn't want to ruin it and I already need to buy 2 of them to place back onto the front brakes.

I'm pretty certain that the original rivets are 3/16" unless the factory parts manual is wrong but it specifically shows in the manual that the rivets are 3/16".

I'm pretty sure though at this point the 80' Sportster would require a #12 screw, preferably a fine thread. I had tapped the inner plate to 10-32 without having to drill, hence it being loose. Based on this today I was able to get some 10-24 screws to snug up but I had to wrap some Teflon tape around each screw a few times. I don't think they would go anywhere but I think running a 12-24 or 12-28 would probably better do the trick. I may apply a bit of locktite on them for better resistance to vibration.

The only thing is, if I went to a #12 screw it would also require me to drill the holes bigger on the outer cover as well as the 10-24s were somewhat tight and had to be threaded into the outer cover.

I don't think I'm going to spend to much more time on this but maybe someone else will be looking to do the same and this might help save a bit of frustration.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blk80bike View Post
I'm pretty certain that the original rivets are 3/16" unless the factory parts manual is wrong but it specifically shows in the manual that the rivets are 3/16".
OK, that explains why smaller screws on EVO models.
Fairly sure I used 8-32 button head on mine.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blk80bike View Post

I'm pretty sure though at this point the 80' Sportster would require a #12 screw, preferably a fine thread...

The only thing is, if I went to a #12 screw it would also require me to drill the holes bigger on the outer cover.
Is drilling the outer an issue?
Are the rivet holes in the cover recessed?

If recessed, you might use a size 10 washer under size 12 head.
Looking at McMaster-Carr, a 12-28 button head is 0.413 diameter, but a socket head is only 0.324.
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Looked on my Factory Shop Manual - pop river - 3/16x3/8x38 (2 required.) Simple solution is rotate inner cover (use gasket as template) to drill 4 new holes. The screws are 8-16x3/4 for the standoffs which should work for you #1 cover as well. Remember to drill the horizontal holes smaller so you can drill & tap them for your choice of screws.
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8-32 x 7/16" long screw
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ryder rick View Post
8-32 x 7/16" long screw
With new holes drilled and tapped?
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