Runs rough cold, random hesitation..choke does not improve (if it aint' broke - dont fix it!)

Discussion in 'Softail Models' started by Cambo, May 10, 2009.

  1. Cambo

    Cambo Member

    Took my bike to the HD dealer for mandatory safety certifcation, bike ran perfectly prior. Dealer performed recalls on main jet and starter cable (without my consent) and replaced the fuel petcock and rear tire. When I picked up the bike $1000 later, I knew 5 minutes down the road that something was wrong, but it corrected itself about 15 - 20 mins after warming up. I have had the bike back to the dealer 3 times to resolve (one time they richened the mixture) and 3 mechanics swear that it is running fine and they cannot reproduce the issue. I am convinced that this shop does not know their own bike and I am going to fix it myself!

    - Adjusted choke tension and it stays in position, but regardless does not improve condition if choke on or off or half

    - Replaced plugs with HD orig., and gapped to spec (made no difference), battery, regulator and wires are only 1 year old

    - Gas is fresh

    I suspect that the dealer may have messed something up in the carb, especailly the combination of replacing the fuel petcock and replacing the main jet. Has anyone had this same problem? The bike runs fine when hot but idle is slightly lower then when I took it into the shop originally. My next step is to pull the carb apart and clean. I wanted to see if anyone has had a similar problem before I proceed?

    NEWHD74FAN Experienced Member Retired Moderators

    Welcome Cambo, sorry for your poor experience with the dealer. You may have to do this portion of the A/F mixture process yourself, as the HD dealer "technically is not permitted to do so..." which is the "unplugged" mixture screw, main jet and #4 washers under the diaphram needle. See Glider's tech tip in the self help tab at the top. Enjoy your visit, plenty of good info here to make your ride run better...:D
  3. fin_676

    fin_676 Experienced Member Staff Member Moderator Contributor

    I would be a wee bit worried about the jet changes
    91 model fitted with a 45 slow and 185 main
    92 model fitted with a 40 slow and 165 main
    the 92 was made a bit on the lean side and if any performance modes were done IE exhaust and air cleaner then jets would have to be larger to cope if the recall was to fit the smaller jets of the later model and any performance modifications have been done to the bike then you could be running very lean
    thats not good so id suggest pulling the carb apart to find out what is in there
    and then move on from that point

  4. TQuentin1

    TQuentin1 Well-Known Member Staff Member Moderator

    Welcome to the Forum. I am sure you will get some great help here.

    I have a '91 Dyna, and working on the carb is a piece of cake. Simple but great carb. See below.

    There is a bunch of great info to help you with your carb issue. Unfortunate that this has all been thrust upon you by the stuff done at the Dealership. Suggest you download that service manual in the link provided to you above, and then see here:

    Fuel and Carb Related Issues - Harley Davidson Community

  5. Cambo

    Cambo Member

    Thanks to all for the warm welcome and resources...much appreciated!

    I am going to flush to carb via drain screw to rid of any (EDIT) that might be stuck in the bowl, take her for a ride and see if anything changes.. if not I will open carb and inspect.

    Stealer did an 081 recall and a 082 recall. Does anyone know the exact parts that are part of the 081 recall? I know a jet was replaced but not sure if slow or main and if they changed a needle. HD part # on the 081 recall kit is 93683 and 082 kit is 95285..anyone know what is in these kits?

    A Friendly Reminder - Harley Davidson Community
    Last edited by a moderator: May 11, 2009
  6. Cambo

    Cambo Member

    To add insult to injury I just removed the bowl, main and slow jets and they are clearly original!!!!... meaning the stealer claimed to have performed the recall and did absolutley nothing. At least one good thing, I found that the larger jet has a bunch of sand like granules in it... bowl and jets are soaking in carb clean, I am going to put it back together in a while and see the result. I really think that somehow the junk in the tank entered the carb when they replaced the fuel petcock. Like I said, if you want it done right, do it yourself!
  7. glider

    glider Veteran Member

    OH NO, the dealers wouldn't do something like that !:rofl

    You got it right, do it yourself if you want it done right.
  8. fin_676

    fin_676 Experienced Member Staff Member Moderator Contributor

    Seems like you've found a probable cause of the rough running
    i hope that all is well once reassembled

  9. Cambo

    Cambo Member

    Well the bike runs run worse now, idle is fine but it was before....I suppose this might be a good thing that I have isolated/narrowed it down to the carb by making things worse. Acceleration is worse, very little top end and a lot more backfiring. I took the carb off again and did the following:

    - took diaphram out and it is in good condition...light test check out ok

    - needle is clean and free of carbon

    - bowl drain screw had some rust on tip of needle - carefully removed with very fine sandpaper

    - took apart float, inlet needle and seat look good

    - sprayed VOES vaccum port with carb cleaner

    - removed jets and cleaned again just to be sure.. all holes on main jet are crystal clear

    - sprayed carb cleaner through enrichener port and cleaned enrichener needle (it swas black with carbon but not enough to stop it)

    - noticed that enrichener cable has slight crack near knob, not preventing tension adjust but I will get new cable anyways

    - there seems to be a lot of black smoke out exhaust during startup/idle with full enrichener...never noticed this before when bike ran well??

    I am not sure where to go from here.. I guess I could test the VOES switch to make sure it is within spec. I was also going to start replacing common parts ie carb to manifold seal, jets and needle. I am baffled at this point since the bike ran perfectly before going into stealer and the only thing they touched on the carb (despite their claim to perform main jet recall) was a new fuel hose/clamp as part of the petcock replacement.
  10. DanFXST

    DanFXST New Member

    Could that be the same fix for my 2005 FXST, I was told to run the choke out alittle or the bike will pop. I just bought it and it has screamin eagle pipes on it and 3400 miles.