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Cam or Big Bore kit

  • Upgrade Cam

    Votes: 15 68.2%
  • Upgrade to 120" Big Bore

    Votes: 7 31.8%

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Discussion Starter #1
Talking with my better half, I've been given the green light to do some work over the winter while the bike sits. I've been pouring over all the numbers and data and posts that I can find and I am just lost in all the numbers at this point. Here is where I am at:

1. Upgrade cam to Woods 222 or 777 cam with lifters & pushrods ($650 + labor) *estimated 115HP and 115 tq*

2. Upgrade engine to 120" motor with cam, clutch, springs, lifters, pushrods, injectors etc. ($2600 + labor) *estimated 125hp and 130 tq*

What I am looking for is a boost.... not some radical, need a seat belt to hold on boost, but a "put a big smile on my face" boost. I do a little 2-up riding and I'd like to still have plenty of ump when my better half wants to go out with me as well. My overall goal is to have a fun bike with some extra giddy up, while still being as reliable as can be. At the end of the day, there is about a $2k difference between the cam or big bore kit and that's a decent chunk of change for an extra 10-15 hp and tq numbers.... so for those of you that have been down this road, do you have any advice? I feel like there's a lot more to the "story" than what the numbers tell, but I haven't ridden a 120" M8 to know just what the difference might be.

Thanks in advance and I look forward to this conversation!!!
 

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What I am looking for is a boost.... not some radical, need a seat belt to hold on boost, but a "put a big smile on my face" boost. I do a little 2-up riding and I'd like to still have plenty of ump when my better half wants to go out with me as well. My overall goal is to have a fun bike with some extra giddy up, while still being as reliable as can be. At the end of the day, there is about a $2k difference between the cam or big bore kit and that's a decent chunk of change for an extra 10-15 hp and tq numbers.... so for those of you that have been down this road, do you have any advice? I feel like there's a lot more to the "story" than what the numbers tell, but I haven't ridden a 120" M8 to know just what the difference might be.

Thanks in advance and I look forward to this conversation!!!
i was in that spot about 15 years ago. spent all the money on upgrades: AC, pipes, cam, etc. and it "wasn't enough."
— but the engine ran really well and would start at the first push of a button.

upgraded to an S&S 113 and loved it. was hotter, wouldn't start as well, didn't like to be chugging along, wanted to rip and run.
the power is addicting. and expensive on tires and tickets lol

you didn't mention who was doing the work. is warranty a concern?
 

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I did a Stage 4 kit on my 2011 RGU. Did cam on my 2015. The headaches by all the work weren't worth it to me. But the power of that Stage 4 kit was addictive. Just not worth it. The 15 with the 555 Woods cam, Arlen Ness Inverted air cleaner, Jackpot exhaust, and tuner was a real nice bump over stock. Reliability still in check.
 
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Discussion Starter #4
Fuel Moto would be building the 120" for me if I go that route- warranty is not a concern either.... I will be canceling my existing Harley ESP with tire/rim coverage and purchasing an ESP with tire/rim through Jim at Board Tracker IF I decide to go that route- from my conversations with Jim, they are building an ESP so that guys who do builds can still be covered, even if the MotorCo doesn't honor their end due to engine work.

I haven't quite decided who would do the cam as I have a few possibilities on that front that are more than capable.

i was in that spot about 15 years ago. spent all the money on upgrades: AC, pipes, cam, etc. and it "wasn't enough."
— but the engine ran really well and would start at the first push of a button.

upgraded to an S&S 113 and loved it. was hotter, wouldn't start as well, didn't like to be chugging along, wanted to rip and run.
the power is addicting. and expensive on tires and tickets lol

you didn't mention who was doing the work. is warranty a concern?
 

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Fuel Moto would be building the 120" for me if I go that route- warranty is not a concern either.... I will be canceling my existing Harley ESP with tire/rim coverage and purchasing an ESP with tire/rim through Jim at Board Tracker IF I decide to go that route- from my conversations with Jim, they are building an ESP so that guys who do builds can still be covered, even if the MotorCo doesn't honor their end due to engine work.
sounds like you're gonna have some fun :smile:

i would trust fuel moto, but it's not my bike.
jamie seems very knowledgeable. don't know but from what i've seen on the forums they know what they're doing.
S&S e-z start cams would prolly help. hopefully they're in the build.

best advice i can give you is to read up on the performance issues until you're ready to pull the plug.
at least you'll know what they're talking about when they rattle off a bunch of engineering terms.
make sure you can run on 93 octane pump gas!!!

and, for heaven's sake, ask all the questions BEFORE you do the build!!!
 

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One of the indies in this area is doing S&S 485 with A/C, 2-1 pipe and tune getting 115/115 regularly. Very reliable, starts, no leaks. That’s my winter project. My previous ride, ‘13 RK had Andrews57h, A/Call me, Pro-Pipe, tune ran 98/106 out of a TC.
 
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When you say 120" are you talking about the mocos 120" or an s&s? A buddy did the stage IV tire shredder kit and still breaks it loose in 3rd gear. Hes a big boy too for it to get up and move like it does.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
The MotorCo Stage IV is a bump from 107CI to 114CI with head work.... there is no 120" kit from the MotorCo.

https://www.harley-davidson.com/store/milwaukee-eight-engine-stave-iv-kit-pa-18-92500062--1

I would be referencing the 120" big bore kit from Fuel Moto:

https://www.fuelmotousa.com/i-23897173-fuel-moto-m8-120-big-bore-kit.html#!year=2018||make=HARLEY-DAVIDSON||model=TOURING ROAD GLIDE SPECIAL FLTRXS



When you say 120" are you talking about the mocos 120" or an s&s? A buddy did the stage IV tire shredder kit and still breaks it loose in 3rd gear. Hes a big boy too for it to get up and move like it does.
 

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Not worried about losing the warranty. No brainer, go 120
CCP under 200. Professionally tuned, not a FP3. Work done at a top notch shop. You shouldn't have any problems at all
 
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Have you already upgraded the suspension on the bike? If not, I would do that first and you will be amazed at how much faster you can ride the bike. It may not give you bragging rights at the local Hooters, but will when you keep up with the sport bikes in the curves.
 

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If you ride a lot, and I mean A LOT I would look at reliability. The cam upgrade will give you that reliability as well as the torque you are looking for. PLUS it will give you the money left to spend on the suspension so you can smoke the sport bikes in the twisties. JM2CW.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Suspension will be addressed as well- I just didn't want to muddy the waters and add that in since it's a topic that's hotly debated all by itself.

I also don't ride 15k miles a year..... if things are going well, I usually get in around 3k - 5k depending on if I can get away for a trip or not. The rest of my riding is usually just long weekend rides on backroads in the area.
 
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Have done many cam and big bore upgrades . to me dependability & performance are key . All components must be added in to your initial outlay of $ . cam [m8] , pipe/s , tuner , & tune/dyno , hi-flo air , push rods , gaskets etc and labor costs . That said using stock heads & valve springs the 117 seems a solid choice ; 120's hp & 130's torque using stock components & all said only a couple hundred more $'s while the bike is apart . If you do cam & the other supporting components & are not satisfied that few hundred will turn into a couple grand period . Ball park on cam pipes tuner etc etc is 1800+ you doing the work or 2500 117 kit tuner pipe etc you doing the work , the 20+ extra hp/torque for 5-600$ is best price point to dependability I can see & s and s & revolution offer some great kits as well besides what you see on FM's site . Hope it helped & good luck with build-planning ! as a side note i've been waiting to see the #'s from Andrews 462 cam for the 107 other than from the andrews page
 

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Have done many cam and big bore upgrades . to me dependability & performance are key . All components must be added in to your initial outlay of $ . cam [m8] , pipe/s , tuner , & tune/dyno , hi-flo air , push rods , gaskets etc and labor costs . That said using stock heads & valve springs the 117 seems a solid choice ; 120's hp & 130's torque using stock components & all said only a couple hundred more $'s while the bike is apart . If you do cam & the other supporting components & are not satisfied that few hundred will turn into a couple grand period . Ball park on cam pipes tuner etc etc is 1800+ you doing the work or 2500 117 kit tuner pipe etc you doing the work , the 20+ extra hp/torque for 5-600$ is best price point to dependability I can see & s and s & revolution offer some great kits as well besides what you see on FM's site . Hope it helped & good luck with build-planning ! as a side note i've been waiting to see the #'s from Andrews 462 cam for the 107 other than from the andrews page
Dyno section on the tech forum has a lot of sheets for the M8s with cam change
 

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Discussion Starter #16
My original build was using a Fuel Moto 117" kit just for the reasons you stated..... BUT, Fuel Moto is no longer offering that kit. Customers have not been swapping out their cores as they are suppose to and Fuel Moto didn't have enough to continue selling the 117" kit, so they stopped. Their 120" kit comes with new heads, so swapping out the cores wasn't an issue.

I already have a heavy breather and a V&H Pro Pipe, so I'm well on my way.... just looking to see what others have done and what experience they have gleaned from this adventure. I want to do it once and just enjoy the ride. My Dad had a first year EVO softail and once he started doing work, I can't remember a time that the thing wasn't in the indie shop for something or we weren't chasing some oil leak somewhere. I also used to work for a local dealer and the big boss at that time put the mack daddy 110" kit in his Ultra and I don't think it EVER ran right after that..... having been there and witnessed these things, I don't want to be 5 years into this thing and see the same issues.

Have done many cam and big bore upgrades . to me dependability & performance are key . All components must be added in to your initial outlay of $ . cam [m8] , pipe/s , tuner , & tune/dyno , hi-flo air , push rods , gaskets etc and labor costs . That said using stock heads & valve springs the 117 seems a solid choice ; 120's hp & 130's torque using stock components & all said only a couple hundred more $'s while the bike is apart . If you do cam & the other supporting components & are not satisfied that few hundred will turn into a couple grand period . Ball park on cam pipes tuner etc etc is 1800+ you doing the work or 2500 117 kit tuner pipe etc you doing the work , the 20+ extra hp/torque for 5-600$ is best price point to dependability I can see & s and s & revolution offer some great kits as well besides what you see on FM's site . Hope it helped & good luck with build-planning ! as a side note i've been waiting to see the #'s from Andrews 462 cam for the 107 other than from the andrews page
 
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Lost any respect I had for them the second the same sap rap came outa their salesman's mouth a couple weeks ago & it cost them my business .[we cant do a 1200$ kit anymore but we got a 1700$ kit] theres millions of reputable shops that can bore & fit rings/pistons . The 120 kit has heads recommended but not a part of the kit [and they want another 1300 for them] putting ya before the extra's[clutch work injectors throttle body etc] in the 3000$+ zone before labor & those 3" [117-120] are costing folks 500$ more for 6 more hp than the 117 and about the same in torque value . Heard screaming eagle barrels mentioned too in the conversation , that took all their labor time out of their equation , can't blame them saving/making more $ but @ the customer's expense , doesn't sit well . to many folks depend on gospel according to [shop] . Do research , find all that works together to get exactly what your looking for in building , then get the best prices from all over & make it happen . Unless of course your idle rich or lazy or both , then bow to their mantra & god bless that silver spoon
, I never could & have been doing builds since the early '70's because I couldn't afford shop rates/kits etc . nor do i prey on the community when selling my builds/bikes . Seriously think out what they told you , you & I both know [i hope] they just disrespected your intelligence as they did mine and I'd be retarded to give them any consideration after that ,because 5 years from now & it grenades they'll be more honest/forthright right ,,,,,,,,,,,,,
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I get what you're saying and no, I don't feel as though they are disrespecting my intelligence. No different than the MotorCo not offering a fix for the radios, yet they come up with a brand new 2019 motorcycle you can buy instead and fix all the glare/slow response issues. At the end of the day, it's business and if they aren't making money, they are losing it.

I asked if they would just bore out my existing heads and the answer once again was that they are only doing the 120" kits now.... At the end of the day, 117" or 120", my question still remains- Would be be wiser to just upgrade my cam and leave a good thing alone or shake it up and go for the big bore kit? So far, the masses seem to believe a cam swap would be in my best interest.....

Lets keep the discussion going!!!

Lost any respect I had for them the second the same sap rap came outa their salesman's mouth a couple weeks ago & it cost them my business .[we cant do a 1200$ kit anymore but we got a 1700$ kit] theres millions of reputable shops that can bore & fit rings/pistons . The 120 kit has heads recommended but not a part of the kit [and they want another 1300 for them] putting ya before the extra's[clutch work injectors throttle body etc] in the 3000$+ zone before labor & those 3" [117-120] are costing folks 500$ more for 6 more hp than the 117 and about the same in torque value . Heard screaming eagle barrels mentioned too in the conversation , that took all their labor time out of their equation , can't blame them saving/making more $ but @ the customer's expense , doesn't sit well . to many folks depend on gospel according to [shop] . Do research , find all that works together to get exactly what your looking for in building , then get the best prices from all over & make it happen . Unless of course your idle rich or lazy or both , then bow to their mantra & god bless that silver spoon
, I never could & have been doing builds since the early '70's because I couldn't afford shop rates/kits etc . nor do i prey on the community when selling my builds/bikes . Seriously think out what they told you , you & I both know [i hope] they just disrespected your intelligence as they did mine and I'd be retarded to give them any consideration after that ,because 5 years from now & it grenades they'll be more honest/forthright right ,,,,,,,,,,,,,
 

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Go as big as you can afford the first time and be done. Big motors can be every bit as reliable as smaller ones. It all depends on matching components that work well together and a good quality tune. I've done stage 1's, mild builds with cams and head work, big bore high compression 117 build in a twin cam, and my last one was a 124 crate motor from Frank at Drago's. I had the most fun with the bigger motors and both of them I rode everywhere. The 124 was trouble free for 14,000 miles with lots of hot rodding and cutting up as well as round trips from east Texas to Daytona and back and Missouri as well. Not only that but believe it or not I normally always got better mileage than my friends with their stage 1 bikes unless I was really getting on the gas a lot.
 

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it all depends what you are doing with your bike-if mostly around town go crazy have fun.i changed cams in 110-works for my needs-several 1200 to 4000 miles trips each year-2 up loaded heavy or solo never lacking.that being said it's fun to pull into an event with a nasty sounding ride-my next project is native bagger front end
 
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