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Aging & Worn
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4,516 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
A few things I've learned, over the last 1100 miles I've put on the Fat Boy:

a. Out of the bikes I've owned (3), it's the most well-balanced bike I've
EVER had!
B. She hasn't burned a DROP of oil!
C. She has a tight Clutch (I wonder if I can soften her up?) that wears my
hand down on long stop-n-go rides.
D. The EFI system really SHINES on these colder mornings!! (45 - 50 degrees)
E. The solid center wheels (of course there are cooling holes) CAN get "pushed"
in windy situations or drafting behind a truck or large vehicle.


-Soupy
 

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The 43rd Poser
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440 Posts
They sell a kit, don't remember what they call it, but it has an easy pull clutch spring... your dealer will have a part number.

The solid wheels, due to aerodynamics, aren't what you're feeling.

Placebo effect.

There are those that will argue with me, but in my 31 years of riding, I've put a few thousand on a 2004 FatBoy... same color as yours, in fact... And I put 30,000 on a Heritage, which is the same bike, exact chassis, different accoutrements, including spoke wheels. The handling between the two is the same, yes, wind will move you a bit, especially in the draft of a truck... but it ain't the wheels.
 

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Gone.
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17,857 Posts
I'd try adjusting your clutch and clutch cable first. You might also need to get used to it and wake up a few of those forearm muscles if they've been snoozing for awhile. (My wife rides a Softail and I know she can feel it in long stop and go traffic, but it's never been anything that really bothers her.) Kick it in neutral while you stand and stretch, if you need to.

And as mentioned, there is a ramp-and-ball kit that you can have installed. I've installed a few of them on bikes ridden by girls. :)

Safety Man is right: There is no difference in what you feel in the wind with your semi-solid wheels to what you'd feel with spoked wheels. That's an old wive's tale.

I'm glad you're enjoying your new scoot!
 

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Swamp Rat Rider
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1,903 Posts
Main thing is Keep Enjoying Soup .. I agree with Eye on work those wrist and forearm muscles unless absolutely have to go to the EZ Clutch Route .. After putting a SE Racing Clutch Spring on my Ultra as part of the Cams Upgrade on my Ultra, was a Bear to Shift for a bit but Got 'er Done ..
 

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Aging & Worn
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4,516 Posts
Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
I like the mods done to SafetyMan's bike......the windshield, the passenger seat and backrest. Maybe some day.

I have pretty strong arms and wrists. Just noticed it takes a bit more constant memory to hold the clutch in for longer sustain in stopped situations. I considered going to Neutral and letting it go, but that goes against my training to stay constantly ready in first gear.

I'll accept that the "push" I can sometimes get, when behind a truck on the highway is typical (I can feel it in my cage as well). Just figured the more solid wheels might be CONTRIBUTING to the feel, is all. Not a complaint really, because I can handle it. Just an observation.

One other observation if I may (which should have been included in my OP........I note that, just like on other bikes, in spite of the idiot light that helps of course, I STILL haven't mastered the move from 1st to "N" or from 2nd, to "N." It takes a few tries. Since this is true on all the bikes I've owned, I don't consider it a flaw of HD. I would love some suggestions as to how (after all these years of riding, I can STILL learn something new), to get to "N" without passing it. There MUST be some sort of TRICK?!

-Soupy
 

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Premium Member
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8,911 Posts
Scratch it.

Some shifters like on the old Yamaha GP bikes, needed a gentle scratch with your big tow nail to find neutral.
Some require a stomp with your heel to shift.
Both are a bit of an exaggeration.

From second down to first, moving your foot back will shorten the leverage. From first up to neutral a slight twist of the foot might do it. This is for a sensitive gear box. Some are tough if they require a lot of pressure, then suddenly move and you go too far.

As Eye said, maybe clutch adjustment, and practice. Your boots may also be limiting your feel.

At the track I often switched from left hand shifters to right hand. I switched my last Yamaha to a right hand shift.

Yesterday I rode my XS11 with a half helmet on. Does not muffle the sounds like a full face. The gear box sounds like a Mack truck when shifting up in the lower gears.

Unkle Crusty*
 

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Shaper Of All Things Metal
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2,799 Posts
I have pretty strong arms and wrists. Just noticed it takes a bit more constant memory to hold the clutch in for longer sustain in stopped situations.
Almost everyone thinks they are stronger than they are. If there was a way to accurately measure this against some kind of bench mark, most folks would find they fall shorter in actuality than in their minds.

If you are struggling to hold your clutch in, your grip is weak. Not sure what you mean by needing 'constant memory' to hold it in but sounds like you have to strain. It shouldn't even be something you're aware of. Try getting one of those hand squeeze exercisers and use it whenever you're sitting around reading, watching TV or on the computer. It'll help your grip.

As far as finding neutral, as 'Eye' said, if you're having trouble, you haven't got the 'feel' yet. Try just sitting on your bike in your driveway and practice. It's a matter of training the muscle memory in your foot (and toe).
 

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American Legion Rider
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23,543 Posts
Almost everyone thinks they are stronger than they are. If there was a way to accurately measure this against some kind of bench mark, most folks would find they fall shorter in actuality than in their minds.

If you are struggling to hold your clutch in, your grip is weak. Not sure what you mean by needing 'constant memory' to hold it in but sounds like you have to strain. It shouldn't even be something you're aware of. Try getting one of those hand squeeze exercisers and use it whenever you're sitting around reading, watching TV or on the computer. It'll help your grip.

As far as finding neutral, as 'Eye' said, if you're having trouble, you haven't got the 'feel' yet. Try just sitting on your bike in your driveway and practice. It's a matter of training the muscle memory in your foot (and toe).
Unless you are dealing with an after market clutch. But I agree with you that a you should be able to deal with any standard clutch.

Having said that, I do think Honda clutches are easier than a Harley. But is it so hard to believe some people are not and never will be satisfied with a Harley. No matter how much they think they are the Harley kind?

What the heck is wrong with being a Honda person.? When the ride and feel is to your liking, maybe that's the kind of rider you are.

You will never change a Harley to be like a Honda. Just maybe a person has to face reality. I'll go back to sleep now.:D
 
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