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Old 03-08-2014, 05:24 PM   #1
trc.rhubarb OP
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Replacing compensator on 2010 Harley Touring

In case anyone is interested...

So my bike wont start without drawing the attention of everyone within miles. It also sounds rattly when riding, especially around town.
I determined it was the compensator and no point putting stock back since 2011-> get the SE one.
This year a new new one was released, because the old one kept failing too.

New one is a beast! Especially compared to the old stock one.


old one


So it required that I replace the rotor too, which sounds easy, was easy but required partial removal of the inner primary to do so. yay!

Here we are just getting started


Outer off and looking at the guts


Had to glue this piece of plastic thing to the inner that catches oil and drips onto the compensator... lame fix


Gluing required the $55 glue (yes, I bought it... *shame*) and a $50 adapter kit to fit the glue into your caulking gun.
I didn't buy that, I made it out of 3 sockets and some electrical tape. Worked perfectly - it's in the top of the picture below



So old compensator came out no problem, as did the clutch but I didn't buy the locking tool. I used a powerful impact gun and the 2 bolts came right off.
Locking tool is a $40 steel bar that wedges the sprockets.



The rotor... damn, forgot it's magnets! That was a bit difficult to get out. They sell a $50 puller. I used 2 channel locks and that worked great. Only issue? The primary has a thick piece blocking its removal.
Loosened all the bolts and it came right out.

Clutch & primary chain


Old Rotor.


My stator looks good! Always nice to see that it's in good shape.



Everything back in. - oh and they changed from a regular bolt to a T-70 Torx. Go ahead and find a T-70 not on the internet... I dare you
180 ft/lbs is a lot. It actually spun the rear wheel with the front locked. Used ratchet strap on the brake pedal and that was that.
Still need to put the tensioner in. That was a bear until a opened the service manual and it said to zip tie it flat. Ok, wow, that was easy


Then just button the outer back up, adjust the clutch and oh, don't forget to tighten the outer before BEFORE filling with fluid.

Put the floorboards and shifter back on and it was time to test.
Bike starts nicely now. No more chatter on acceleration and no more pulsing at lower RPMs.

Was damn expensive though but worth it to be able to start again without grinding, crunching, banging, etc...
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Old 03-08-2014, 05:31 PM   #2
Benesesso
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Um, what does it compensate for?
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Old 03-08-2014, 06:21 PM   #3
trc.rhubarb OP
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Well sir, that's the question of the month but when it doesn't compensate appropriately, I want to hit it with a brick!

Not sure why direct drive isn't good enough for HD but im no mechanical engineer either.
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Old 03-09-2014, 06:16 AM   #4
ragtoplvr
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That big twin has some impressive torque pulses, that would require larger stronger heavier gears and case in the transmission if not spread out over a longer time. Also when shifting and clutching those impacts can feed the other way. This sort of thing is very common. I am interested n how the old compensator failed, did the belleville springs in the cover break or what.

Rod
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Old 03-09-2014, 08:14 AM   #5
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What does it compensate for?

Aside from containing the drive sprocket for the primary chain, the compensator is designed to absorb and reduce the shock of the firing pulses, much like the harmonic balancer does on a car engine. It is a necessary component of the H-D powertrain design.

How much did the kit cost?
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Old 03-09-2014, 10:55 AM   #6
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The old one wasn't visibly broken, just no longer working. I'll take a closer look at it today to see if I can find excessive wear. The springs in the original are very small compared to the new one but unlike many I've seen online, there wasn't a tremendous amount of wear on the parts. There was a lot of debris on my magnetic drain plug though and the fluid had just 3k miles on it since the last change.

All in, the kit was about $500 for the compensator $299, Rotor $120, Glue $55, Synth oil $15, CA Tax $1B oh and the $9 t70 bit that I searched high and low for. If you improvise a bit, you can get away without any of the 'required' special tools which can be quite expensive. Primary chain locking bar, Rotor puller, Glue adapter, chain locker (stepped). I didn't replace the inner primary or outer gaskets, I was careful with removal and they seem well made. no leaks so far.

I would have bought online from Chicago HD because they do 20% discount most of the time but I had a gift card for $200 that was only good locally. Plus I like my local dealer and he's been struggling.

I've heard that the 103" motor is too hard on the stock compensator that was designed for 88" motors but my bike has about 45k miles on it now. It's been an issue for about 5k miles. I changed out cams about 25k miles ago and that may have accelerated wear. I also replaced the clutch spring for a heavy duty about 3k miles ago... could have been the clutch slipping before masked it.

I can say that it feels like a new bike again. Runs smoother, which I didn't expect and starting is no longer a frustrating and embarrassing issue.

Oh and I have quite a bit of the epoxy left which I don't think will last too long. if someone is doing this and wants the glue, i'd be happy to send it over to them.
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Old 03-09-2014, 12:31 PM   #7
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How many miles on the bike? What kind of usage?
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Old 03-09-2014, 04:49 PM   #8
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about 45k miles, always run Synthetic oil
Not abused often but rarely ridden gently.

It had the transmission input shaft bearing go out at about 24k miles. This was common with 2009/10 bikes.
Also lost the stator about that time but I think it was related to the work the guy did under warranty.

Has aftermarket ECU, Headers, Wideband O2, Cams, roller lifters, no cat, intake, etc...
I'm sure I deserved it :)
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Old 03-09-2014, 04:58 PM   #9
Wasser
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Nice job on the in floor lift!

What kind of lift and, story on the cutting of the floor for the lift?
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Old 03-09-2014, 06:43 PM   #10
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Excellent thread. I'm ashamed that all I can do is change oil and adjust a chain. Love to see the inside of these engines.

Kevin

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Old 03-09-2014, 07:40 PM   #11
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Sooooo... Why did this get moved to RW?
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Old 03-09-2014, 08:39 PM   #12
MrEndo
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Plastic handle of a screwdriver jammed in the primary chain always used to work for me tightening the compensator. And a strong impact wrench was always able to pull it. I'm not familiar with the latest compensator but my 2014 is in the shop right now. The service writer eluded to the compensator maybe contributing to my reported rough idle. Was that one of your symptoms?
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Old 03-10-2014, 06:04 AM   #13
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Man,

I hate that I keep seeing compensator threads all over the internet.

Anyone else have theirs shit the bed?
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Old 03-10-2014, 08:07 AM   #14
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I am suffering from a severe case of bike lift envy. That setup is sweet.
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Old 03-10-2014, 07:29 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bloodweiser View Post
Man,

I hate that I keep seeing compensator threads all over the internet.

Anyone else have theirs shit the bed?
One of my riding buddies had his do the same thing. No internal parts wrecking but noticeably dorked up. He paid to have it fixed. Almost a grand for parts + labor.

About 30k miles of hard mountain riding, lots of gear shifting, lugging, etc.

Works fine now.
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