83 flht loud ticking/ knock coming from the primary

Discussion in 'Classic Models' started by gigantor985, Apr 18, 2009.

  1. gigantor985

    gigantor985 Member

    I have an 83 flht that seems to have developed a loud tick or a knock in the primary drive after I rode it about 50 miles on the freeway. I checked the pushrod adjustment which everything checked out good. I figured that I would start there since shovelheads are known for valvetrain noise. I also checked the primary chain and it's not sloppy the engine seems to be running good. This is my first Harley and I'm kinda stumped by this one if anyone could point me in the right direction to troubleshoot this I would appreciate the advice. Thanks
  2. Caper

    Caper Active Member

    Just a guess..did you try re-torquing the compensator nut.
  3. Bud White

    Bud White Well-Known Member Retired Moderators


    I second that
  4. gigantor985

    gigantor985 Member

    I checked the compensator nut it was tight, so today I pulled the heads to do some more investigating after listening to the engine again using a stethoscope and narrowing down the location of the knock to the front clyinder. After pulling the heads and jugs I found a chewed up piston in the front cylinder. Tomorrow I will check out the rest of the motor and start ordering parts.

    I finally got into the rest of the engine and did a thorough investigation of all of the internal parts. All of the bearings and bushings checked out good, I found that the end gap for the top piston rings was never set which is supposed to be done on "KB silvolite" pistons or the rings bind when they get hot . I also found the lifter and tappet assembly for the front exhaust valve was installed backwards causing it to starve for oil at higher rpms which caused it to collapse, sieze and knock like crazy.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 5, 2009