The Sportster and Buell Motorcycle Forum - The XLFORUM®
 

Go Back   The Sportster and Buell Motorcycle Forum - The XLFORUM® > SPORTSTER MOTORCYCLE ZONE > Sportster Motorcycle Era Specific and Model Specific > Ironhead Sportster Motorcycle Talk (1957-1985)
XLF Blogs XLF Arcade XLF Disclaimer/Privacy Statement/Terms Of Use

Ironhead Sportster Motorcycle Talk (1957-1985) For all those that wanna talk about Ironhead Sportster Motorcycles

Active Threads
5 1200 or 883
Last Post: blindfredy
Posted On: 2 Minutes Ago
Replies: 977
Views: 285,154
0 HAMMER PERFORMANCE Tech Tip Videos
Last Post: Hippysmack
Posted On: 15 Minutes Ago
Replies: 10
Views: 145
0 Start / run button and switch question
Last Post: IXL2Relax
Posted On: 15 Minutes Ago
Replies: 10
Views: 106
0 DK's Definitive Ride Report - Some of the Best Scenic Roads Out West - Tons of Photo'
Last Post: spoon
Posted On: 24 Minutes Ago
Replies: 3
Views: 88
0 first harley- help!!
Last Post: rokytnji
Posted On: 27 Minutes Ago
Replies: 32
Views: 418
0 First year evo 1986 ignition module
Last Post: IXL2Relax
Posted On: 32 Minutes Ago
Replies: 8
Views: 304
0 Show your bike next to an abandoned building
Last Post: Hellbent_4
Posted On: 46 Minutes Ago
Replies: 34
Views: 8,194
5 Cannot seem to find crankcase drain plug torque specs...
Last Post: Hippysmack
Posted On: 1 Hour Ago
Replies: 2
Views: 90
0 Leaking oil around oil tank and can't figure out why
Last Post: cantolina
Posted On: 1 Hour Ago
Replies: 11
Views: 310
0 HAMMERPerf 90" In the Works
Last Post: mac93
Posted On: 1 Hour Ago
Replies: 1,445
Views: 146,289
0 oil cooler or not?
Last Post: cantolina
Posted On: 1 Hour Ago
Replies: 127
Views: 20,052
5 Another "new guy" rumor or fact question....
Last Post: barefoot
Posted On: 1 Hour Ago
Replies: 21
Views: 1,134
0 Umbrella valve locations in 1989 XLH rocker cover spacers?
Last Post: Jason's Sporty
Posted On: 1 Hour Ago
Replies: 6
Views: 2,019
0 Engine dies when choke off
Last Post: shovithead
Posted On: 2 Hours Ago
Replies: 19
Views: 609
0 90 in. Build
Last Post: mac93
Posted On: 2 Hours Ago
Replies: 97
Views: 14,292
0 newby from Australia
Last Post: GeoK
Posted On: 2 Hours Ago
Replies: 13
Views: 193
0 Intro from New England
Last Post: GeoK
Posted On: 2 Hours Ago
Replies: 5
Views: 101
0 Airtech Streamlining is a Rip-Off Compamy
Last Post: dragstews
Posted On: 2 Hours Ago
Replies: 18
Views: 3,367
0 Head gaskets.
Last Post: doodah man
Posted On: 2 Hours Ago
Replies: 27
Views: 924
5 Is anyone with an early sportster running a 38 mm Mikuni?
Last Post: sevenyears of famine
Posted On: 2 Hours Ago
Replies: 28
Views: 1,230
0 Future of the sporty?
Last Post: friday
Posted On: 3 Hours Ago
Replies: 49
Views: 2,353
0 Fork oil capacity for 2008 XL1200R
Last Post: guitarfish
Posted On: 3 Hours Ago
Replies: 0
Views: 35
0 Pictures of Sportster Scene 1960s
Last Post: Ferrous Head
Posted On: 4 Hours Ago
Replies: 1,812
Views: 762,432
0 oil pouring out on right side
Last Post: John Harper
Posted On: 4 Hours Ago
Replies: 12
Views: 3,303
0 What Sort Of Sporty Have You Got?
Last Post: blindfredy
Posted On: 4 Hours Ago
Replies: 1,025
Views: 260,011
0 PLEASE READ THIS Before You Post In 'The BUY - SELL - TRADE Zone'!
Last Post: Folkie
Posted On: 5 Hours Ago
Replies: 1
Views: 2,535
0 Images From Postimage.org Are Gone
Last Post: Folkie
Posted On: 5 Hours Ago
Replies: 8
Views: 400
0 Hottie of the day, no nudity.
Last Post: Stairman
Posted On: 5 Hours Ago
Replies: 6,081
Views: 411,672
0 Sunday 20th May 2018: Hope Cove
Last Post: Folkie
Posted On: 5 Hours Ago
Replies: 6
Views: 406
0 new oil lines
Last Post: 69sscamaro
Posted On: 5 Hours Ago
Replies: 8
Views: 3,740
More...
Members Birthdays
rider1951 (67), harveyb (66), 883RRR (64), schnucki (59), sportxl (52), gvd883r (48), ambulldogg (40), Teejay, silversporty86 (32)
Sponsored Links
Reply
 
Share Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 13th June 2012
TheHighLife TheHighLife is offline
Biker
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 30
Sportster/Buell Model: XL
Sportster/Buell Year: 84
Reputation: 10
TheHighLife is an unknown quantity at this point
Default Common ironhead problems

I'm still pretty new to these engines. I always hear that ironheads are great engines but you should prepared to be wrenching on them as often or more than you're riding them. So, I'm curious what are the common ironhead problems? What should I look out for? Are there any preventative measures, besides the obvious, that are unique to these engines?
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 13th June 2012
ezmerf's Avatar
ezmerf ezmerf is offline
Senior Master Custom Bike Builder
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Booneville,Ms.
Posts: 4,198
Sportster/Buell Model: XLCH
Sportster/Buell Year: 1974
Sportster/Buell Model #2: XLS
Sportster/Buell Year #2: 1980
Blog Entries: 1
Reputation: 53828
ezmerf is a splendid one to beholdezmerf is a splendid one to beholdezmerf is a splendid one to beholdezmerf is a splendid one to beholdezmerf is a splendid one to beholdezmerf is a splendid one to beholdezmerf is a splendid one to beholdezmerf is a splendid one to beholdezmerf is a splendid one to beholdezmerf is a splendid one to beholdezmerf is a splendid one to behold
Default

Mainly just keep a check every so often to make sure everything is tight esp if you have elec start.
__________________
Murphy's Law :vvet:
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 13th June 2012
FearlessFrisbee's Avatar
FearlessFrisbee FearlessFrisbee is offline
Flat Track Champion
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Eagan MN
Posts: 681
Sportster/Buell Model: XL
Sportster/Buell Year: 1957
Sportster/Buell Model #2: XLS
Sportster/Buell Year #2: 1979
Other Motorcycle Model: Indian Scout 741
Other Motorcycle Year: 1941
Reputation: 6403
FearlessFrisbee is just really niceFearlessFrisbee is just really niceFearlessFrisbee is just really niceFearlessFrisbee is just really niceFearlessFrisbee is just really niceFearlessFrisbee is just really niceFearlessFrisbee is just really niceFearlessFrisbee is just really niceFearlessFrisbee is just really niceFearlessFrisbee is just really niceFearlessFrisbee is just really nice
Default

check out the stickies in the red. The Technical sticky has some great info on specific procedures on some of the things you may be asking about.

http://xlforum.net/forums/s...d.php?t=465866

Also use the search feature for the forum for things you have in mind.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 13th June 2012
GaryanOdinson's Avatar
GaryanOdinson GaryanOdinson is offline
Chief Know It All
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: southern Greens..Ma. Vt. border
Posts: 407
Sportster/Buell Model: 1984 xlch
Sportster/Buell Year: 1984
Reputation: 4520
GaryanOdinson is just really niceGaryanOdinson is just really niceGaryanOdinson is just really niceGaryanOdinson is just really niceGaryanOdinson is just really niceGaryanOdinson is just really niceGaryanOdinson is just really niceGaryanOdinson is just really niceGaryanOdinson is just really niceGaryanOdinson is just really niceGaryanOdinson is just really nice
Default

common problems, worn or wearing parts,getting out of performance range.. lack of maintanice.. fresh oil,filter keeps wear low on those parts..if your starting with a bike thats worn .its going to act like that..poor performance...trobles..good fuel..90% or better octane..these stock engines..are excellent avarge 55 hores.. they don't like long sastained hi speed runs.. they were not designed that way..but we push them and we pay.
these are not long hall speedsters.. good balanced tires true rims..cut excessive vibes.. look at it this way..if you have operating guide lines and you follow them you'll
be ok..but who the hell does that on a sporster.. fasteners use blue locktight..i swaped out stock fastners for stainless steel and fiber locks..have a long tear intimite realtion ship..with every part of your scoot
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 13th June 2012
trappnman's Avatar
trappnman trappnman is offline
Senior Custom Bike Builder
 
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 2,972
Sportster/Buell Model: XLCH- old school chop
Sportster/Buell Year: 1973
Sportster/Buell Model #2: 1981 XL
Other Motorcycle Model: Norton HighRider
Other Motorcycle Year: 1971
Reputation: 190881
trappnman has a brilliant futuretrappnman has a brilliant futuretrappnman has a brilliant futuretrappnman has a brilliant futuretrappnman has a brilliant futuretrappnman has a brilliant futuretrappnman has a brilliant futuretrappnman has a brilliant futuretrappnman has a brilliant futuretrappnman has a brilliant futuretrappnman has a brilliant future
Default

#1 advice:

Be anal about your chain adjustments. Your primary chain > tranny > drive chain is your weakest link, and am micky mouse system to my mind.

You have the primary pulling the mainshaft in 1 direction, and the drive chain pulling it in the other- putting constant pressure on bushings, roller bearings, etc.

If you have either chain too tight, you provide increased tension on the system, and will have tranny problems sooner rather than later.

if in doubt, too loose far better than too tight.

#2- learn how to trouble shoot your charging system. Test components before they go, so you know what a working component should test at. Plenty of tips on this in the stickys. Charging sytem weak link #2

mechanically, they run forever if taken care of.

I strongly recommend any IH owner change sprocket ratio on drive train- I went up un the front, and run 65 at about 3500 on the tack.

Balance Masters on both flywheel and clutch hub, are like having your engine balanced. Day and night difference and I run them in both sportys. Takes away the vibration like it was a rubber mount, and at 65 my mirror is as clear as if sitting still, and thats on a rigid.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 13th June 2012
FJ1100 FJ1100 is offline
Biker
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 10
Sportster/Buell Model: XLCH
Sportster/Buell Year: 1969
Other Motorcycle Model: Yamaha FJ1100
Other Motorcycle Year: 1985
Reputation: 10
FJ1100 is an unknown quantity at this point
Default Balance Masterz

What is Balance Masters?
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 13th June 2012
billeuze's Avatar
billeuze billeuze is offline
XL FORUM TEAM MEMBER
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Coastal BC
Posts: 1,202
Sportster/Buell Model: shovester project
Sportster/Buell Year: 80s
Other Motorcycle Model: Kawasaki kz440
Other Motorcycle Year: 1983
Reputation: 22896
billeuze is a name known to allbilleuze is a name known to allbilleuze is a name known to allbilleuze is a name known to allbilleuze is a name known to allbilleuze is a name known to allbilleuze is a name known to allbilleuze is a name known to allbilleuze is a name known to allbilleuze is a name known to allbilleuze is a name known to all
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by FJ1100 View Post
What is Balance Masters?
http://www.balancemasters.com/motorcycles/index.html
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 13th June 2012
11steve1's Avatar
11steve1 11steve1 is offline
Biker
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 43
Sportster/Buell Model: 1000cc Ironhead
Sportster/Buell Year: 1981
Reputation: 10
11steve1 is an unknown quantity at this point
Default

A lot of people like to put the ironheads (or any other model Harley) down saying that they are unreliable. NOT TRUE ! I put mine together last summer and have fallen so in love with it that I just sold my 06 softtail. While the ironheads are a little more maintnance than a new model, the only major issue I have encountered is vibration.( since reading this I think I'm going to try out the balance masters mentioned above) But I ride HARD and 1000+ miles per week on it. Keep the oil changed and every so often just check for things coming loose and you'll soon be in love.
Just look at it as a high maintnace bitch. Ya want a fat girl tha doesn't complain, or some eye candy that you have to spoil a little ? LOL I get my picture taken or video recorded EVERY time I take the IH on the highway...........Never happened on the '06 and it was chromed to the max and Jockey shift as is the Ironhead. I have a love hate relationship with this web site here (as I'm not computer savy)........ESPECIALLY now that I can't post pics anymore. But this was my first build and honestly found every bit of info needed when I would get stumped on this site. So thanks a million guys ! I hope you enjoy yours as much as I do mine. And honestly I get more compliments on the way the IH SOUNDS than any other harley I have owned. I previously looked at sportys as a girls bike ha ha and still do but not the ironheads
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 13th June 2012
11steve1's Avatar
11steve1 11steve1 is offline
Biker
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 43
Sportster/Buell Model: 1000cc Ironhead
Sportster/Buell Year: 1981
Reputation: 10
11steve1 is an unknown quantity at this point
Default

Oh and the BEST advice is the first thing you should buy for it is a repair manual. Good advice above about the generator also.
LOTS of locktite, lockwashers, and locknuts, on EVERYTHING
Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
  #10  
Old 13th June 2012
IronMick's Avatar
IronMick IronMick is offline
Rider Of The Iron Steed
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: London, ON Canada
Posts: 31,219
Sportster/Buell Model: XLH
Sportster/Buell Year: 1978
Reputation: 700532
IronMick has a reputation beyond reputeIronMick has a reputation beyond reputeIronMick has a reputation beyond reputeIronMick has a reputation beyond reputeIronMick has a reputation beyond reputeIronMick has a reputation beyond reputeIronMick has a reputation beyond reputeIronMick has a reputation beyond reputeIronMick has a reputation beyond reputeIronMick has a reputation beyond reputeIronMick has a reputation beyond repute
Default

Winter project, do this stuff every year ...

https://skydrive.live.com/redir?resi...MAHi-O00sWopD8

Regular maintenance, check this list occasionally during the riding season ...

https://skydrive.live.com/redir?resi...PaqPetoRVZLRbg

Tech data, keep track of this ...

https://skydrive.live.com/redir?resi...Af8i7eNgS6gJ5w
__________________
Mick
IronHead Forever!

Visit Mick's WebSite
[And Check Out My Autobiog]
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump



Sponsored Links
All times are GMT +1. The time now is 03:05.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions Inc.
XL Forum® - Linson Media LLC