Lifter going bad or worse? - Road Glide Forums
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 10-21-2014, 08:57 PM Thread Starter
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Lifter going bad or worse?

I've searched all over the web and haven't found anything exactly like I'm experiencing so here goes...

I have a 2010 RGC with 36,800 on it. I had to have the engine rebuilt last winter at 32,700 miles, so I have a little over 4k on the rebuild. I went with a new S&S 3-piece crank, S&S 106 kit, Andrews 54h cams, feuling HP+ lifters, stock heads, and a baisley oil pressure spring.

In the last 2000 miles or so, I have had a lifter bleed down after the bike sat overnight. When I start it up, the oil pressure light stays on while the lifter rattles before it finally pumps up, usually about 3-5 seconds. It has been consistent like that, always pumping up and getting quiet.

Yesterday, I started the bike up and I got the rattle as usual and after getting ready, I rode away. After about 3 minutes of 20mph roads, I got a terrible, loud rattle/knocking/hammering noise that was there no matter the rpm. It was really freaking loud and I got off the gas and slowed down so I could pull over at the next street. Before I could get there, the noise faded out and the bike was nice and quiet again. The noise lasted maybe 30 seconds, and I figure the lifter bled down while riding, but is that even possible?

I continued on and rode to work, no issues. I was only at work about 3 hours before I left for home. I started up and headed out, and about 10 minutes into the ride, I got the noise again as I was merging onto the interstate. I took it easy again and stayed in the right lane, I was going to pull off at the next place and take a video of what was going on, but the noise quit after about 30 seconds. Then it was nice and quiet the rest of the way home.

Is it possible for a lifter to bleed down and the pump back up while riding? Could the noise have been a stuck valve or something? The knocking was way louder than the rattle I get on startup in the mornings. I am going to start the bike up tomorrow with video running to see if I can catch the noise again and post it on youtube. The bike seemed to run ok during all this, maybe some resistance to acceleration... I just hope I don't have another destroyed engine so soon. I run redline oils, it was changed 1800 miles ago. Are feuling HP+ lifters known to fail?

Anyways, is there anything I should look for that may not be lifters? I'll try to get a video up tomorrow if I can get the noise again. If I don't get the noise again, is it ok to go ahead and ride it? Thanks in advance for any insight to the problem!
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 10-22-2014, 07:10 AM
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Sounds like a lifter has failed. IF you bought the fueling lifters not too long ago I would call Luke and talk with him. Or time to install a new set.


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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 10-22-2014, 07:15 AM
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Or just order a set of S&S premium lifters and see if that takes care of the issue.

Owns " One of those big wheel baggers" you can't ride
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 10-22-2014, 02:13 PM
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Is the oil pressure fluctuating when it's making the noise?

Who built the motor? If it wasn't you, get the Builder to listen to it.

Above all, get rid of the Feuling and get S&S Premium Lifters!

"I've read dozens of books about heros and crooks, and learned much from both of their styles"

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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 10-22-2014, 02:37 PM
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My question is why did the motor have to be rebuilt at 36,800 miles? What happened?

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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 10-22-2014, 02:49 PM Thread Starter
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The motor had to be rebuilt at 32,800 because my crank scissored, the rod bearing cage came apart and threw metal through the engine.... I was out of warranty and h-d said too bad, so I upgraded. The engine was built by H&D Cycles in Lillian, AL. I'm in the military and have since been stationed in Jacksonville, Fl from Pensacola so I can't take it to him. I'll probably give him a call and see what I can do, I've only had the bike back since the beginning of the year.

I haven't noticed any oil pressure changes at all, just business as usual there. Are the Feuling lifters no good? I figured they would be an upgrade from the stock Harley ones. If like to not spend too much money if I can, it's been a money pit the past year for me!

Oh, how easy would it be to swap out lifters? Do I have to pull the cam chest and all that or can they be done easier?
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 10-22-2014, 03:56 PM
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No. The cam chest doesn't need to be touched. It should be pretty easy if you have adjustable pushrods which you should have. Slide push rod tubes up, loosen up push rods & pull out. Un bolt the lifter blocks and swap out lifters. Your builder should do this or you can yourself.

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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 10-22-2014, 04:18 PM
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Changing the lifters is a easy DIY.
1st of all a HD service manual would be helpful so I would suggest getting one.
With any luck the builder used adjustable push rods which would make it easier yet, if they did not put in adjustable push rods I would recommend that you get some.
Pop off the air cleaner this is just for better access to the pushrods and lifter blocks.
Pop off the top of the pushrod tubes by using a regular screw driver in the loops in the pushrod tube, they just pry off. This will allow the pushrod tubes to collapse so you can service the pushrod and lifters, you can hold the push rod tube up with a paperclip and a rubber band.
Rotate the engine so the pushrods are at the base circle or bottomed out so there is not any pressure on the rockers/valves. You should do 1 cylinder at a time because the front and back lifters will not hit the base circle at the same time
You will need to remove the pushrods if you don't have adjustable pushrods you can cut the pushrods with a bolt cutter or take the rocker box covers and rockers off to remove the pushrods if you are reusing the non adjustble pushrods, adjustable pushrod can be removed without removing the rocker box covers/rockers and you don't need to cut the adjustable pushrods either.
After the pushrods are removed you just need to remove the 4 allen bolts on the lifter blocks and pull them off, then remove the anti- rotation pin which just lifts out and then you can pull the lifters out.
Put the new lifters in and install the anti-rotation pin, then put the lifter blocks back on (if your gaskets are good you can reuse them), put the pushrods in and adjust then install the pushrod tubes.
There is nothing to it just make sure to do 1 cylinder at a time because you only need to rotate the engine to the base circle 1 time for each cylinder and the adjustable pushrods should be on the base circle when adjusted.
Soak the new lifters in oil for 24 hours is recommended, the lifters may need to pump up when the engine is started so there may be some noise and it doesn't hurt to check the pushrod adjustment after a few hundred miles of riding.


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Last edited by ironmark; 10-22-2014 at 04:22 PM.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 10-25-2014, 03:05 PM Thread Starter
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Wow thanks for the writeup on replacing the lifters. I do have stock pushrods so I'll have to pull the rocker covers and all that. I've got a service manual too. I called Feuling and was told I can send them in to get looked at and replaced if necessary. I just don't want to be down from riding for that long...

I have ridden the bike some more since I first posted, about 100 miles total... Everything is working as it should again, almost no rattle on cold startup too for what that's worth. I feel like im riding a timebomb though. I'm not sure what I'll do at this point, I've seen on other sites people running comp cams 850 lifters with really good results, I may try that money is pretty tight for bike stuff right now, I think my wife is tired of it!
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 10-25-2014, 05:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by milesdt85 View Post
Wow thanks for the writeup on replacing the lifters. I do have stock pushrods so I'll have to pull the rocker covers and all that. I've got a service manual too. I called Feuling and was told I can send them in to get looked at and replaced if necessary. I just don't want to be down from riding for that long...

I have ridden the bike some more since I first posted, about 100 miles total... Everything is working as it should again, almost no rattle on cold startup too for what that's worth. I feel like im riding a timebomb though. I'm not sure what I'll do at this point, I've seen on other sites people running comp cams 850 lifters with really good results, I may try that money is pretty tight for bike stuff right now, I think my wife is tired of it!
The lifters will still go bad even if they sound better right now. Ride the bike until it is too cold out and then do the R&R.

Taking the pushrods out from the top is no big deal either.
First you will need to take the fuel tank off so you can access the rocker covers, you only need to remove the 4 tank bolts and unplug the fuel pump wires.
Take rocker covers off there is 6 bolts to a rocker cover the gaskets should be re-usable.
Untighten the rocker bolts all the way by turning each bolt a little at a time but leave the bolts in the rockers. With the rocker still in the rocker box you lift the rocker up and rotate the left and right rocker arms 1/4 of a turn then the pushrods will pull right out from the top.
After you replace the lifters drop the pushrods back in and rotate the rocker arms back to the operating position and tighten the rocker bolts by tightening each bolt a little at a time.
I keep track of the pushrods by putting each pushrod and pushrod tube in a 1 gallon zip loc bag which is marked intake or exhaust, I find this to be a easy way to keep the pushrods clean too
Pulling the pushrods from the top you don't need to find the cam base circle because when you tighten the rocker assembly the pushrods will collapse the lifters and open the valve if needed. Just make sure to tighten each of the rocker bolts a little at a time.
It is hard to get a torque wrench in to torque the rocker bolts so just tighten them up good but remember the bolts are steel and the heads are aluminum so do not over tighten you could stip a hole. Same holds true on the rocker cover bolts.


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