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Have a 2011 Fltrx, been having a lot of top end noises. 29000 miles. Went for a ride to Illinois a few weeks back and the noise got real loud. Made it back home no problem, got the bike into the shop and they said it sounds like a bad lifter. I have a 204 SE cam in the bike, they said with cams, lifter only last about 25000 miles and it’s regular maintenance to replace them. Went and picked the bike up this morning and it like a new bike. Never heard of this before, but something to keep in mind for the future.
 

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A lot has been written about the HD lifter failure.
At 9000 miles I installed a 106 kit. I went with the S&S standard lifters and a CR 575. No top end noise at all
 
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The lifters on my 2016 had to be replaced at 20,000 miles. I’ve heard grumblings of them needing to be replaced every 20,000, or treated like a maintenance items. In nearly 40 years of riding, and owning numerous bikes of different brands, including several Harleys, I personally find the notion of replacing lifters every 20,000 miles to be obsurd, considering I ride 15,000 plus miles some years.
 

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I just replaced mine on my 16 at 19k. It's because the stock ones are junk. Once you upgrade you're good to go. Stock have a coating on the roller. It's not a hardened steel roller. But a coated one. That coating comes off. There's your wear. For me the chips of coating tore up my oil pump and caused a lifter to collapse. I replaced everything in the cam chest short of the cams. And new adjustable push rods. No harley parts. Feuling, Zippers and S&S.
 
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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
All good to know guys. Thanks for the heads up on the junk HD lifters. I also think it’s bullshit for all the money we drop on these bikes that this should be a mantiance item in the first place. Don’t get me wrong, I love the bike. But come on. Next time I won’t be HD parts going back in. RFG7680 I had seen your post recently that you had problems with your scoot and you were little ways from home. Glad you were able to get it fixed and back home. Ride safe all.
 

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I ran crane small block Chevy lifters in my glide for 20 k miles. Andrews 48h cams. Never a problem. If I ever need lifters again I will do the same. At about $13 each.
 

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I had the same issue on my 2011 FLTRX, at 10k my lifter took a shit, so I did cams , adjustable pushrods and S&S premium lifters, seems to be a common occurrence, poorly made HD lifters, shame.
 

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I too almost went with the crane lifters, because of the price. Lot of of guys run them no problem at all. Ive heard pros and cons both ways. The one thing that stuck with me is that a small block and our engines have different oil needs on the top end. So the oil hole in the lifters are 2 different sizes. I don't know if this makes any difference or not. I didn't want any issues so I went with what is recommended by 99% of the builders. Every single time I try and save money on something like this it always comes back and bites me in the ass and I end up getting what I should have got in the first place. Might just be bad luck but I wasn't chancing it. Just me
 

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I run Comp Cams 850 lifters. Made in the USA. I have had no issues whatsoever from them and if you buy them in buy using partnumber 850-16 you have enough to do 4 bikes. Which, for me, makes sense to have around. I actually have S&S Premiums in one of my bikes and I get more noise out of them than my bikes with Comp Lifters.
 

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When I installed my Andrews 57H Cam in my 2012 Custom I replaced my stock lifters with the Comp Cams V-Thunder Lifters and Martin Brothers Adjustable Pushrods and couldn’t be happier.
Mike U.


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I too almost went with the crane lifters, because of the price. Lot of of guys run them no problem at all. Ive heard pros and cons both ways. The one thing that stuck with me is that a small block and our engines have different oil needs on the top end. So the oil hole in the lifters are 2 different sizes. I don't know if this makes any difference or not. I didn't want any issues so I went with what is recommended by 99% of the builders. Every single time I try and save money on something like this it always comes back and bites me in the ass and I end up getting what I should have got in the first place. Might just be bad luck but I wasn't chancing it. Just me
I think the small oil hole actually creates more pressure for the top end. Jmo
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I didn’t ask what lifter they replaced my junk ones with at the dealer I use, I just assumed they use HD parts. I was just amazed at how quiet it was on the way home. Went for a ride with the wife on Sunday and even she said wow this thing has never been this quiet, we could hear each other. Well I happened to look at the part number on the work order and to my surprise they used S&S lifters. I’m not really a motor guy but I know the bike runs great now.
 

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I think the small oil hole actually creates more pressure for the top end. Jmo
Except the fact that you are running a thicker viscosity in an HD and HD's aren't about oil pressure, they're about oil flow. That's why a lot of newby's get all freaked out when they get their first Harley and see how low the oil pressure is at idle. The pressure behind the hole would be higher but passed the lifters and into the pushrods getting up to the rockers would be lower. They may work and I have never run them but if they don't work you wouldn't see signs of it right away. I'll just stick with what is made for the bike even if it cost more. There are better places to save money than vital engine components. JMO
 

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Except the fact that you are running a thicker viscosity in an HD and HD's aren't about oil pressure, they're about oil flow. That's why a lot of newby's get all freaked out when they get their first Harley and see how low the oil pressure is at idle. The pressure behind the hole would be higher but passed the lifters and into the pushrods getting up to the rockers would be lower. They may work and I have never run them but if they don't work you wouldn't see signs of it right away. I'll just stick with what is made for the bike even if it cost more. There are better places to save money than vital engine components. JMO
Well said
 

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Except the fact that you are running a thicker viscosity in an HD and HD's aren't about oil pressure, they're about oil flow. That's why a lot of newby's get all freaked out when they get their first Harley and see how low the oil pressure is at idle. The pressure behind the hole would be higher but passed the lifters and into the pushrods getting up to the rockers would be lower. They may work and I have never run them but if they don't work you wouldn't see signs of it right away. I'll just stick with what is made for the bike even if it cost more. There are better places to save money than vital engine components. JMO
I know a guy who has an electra glide with over 60k on sbc lifters. And I know several other people using them. This is why I decided to use them. I do not doubt what you are saying. It makes sense. I don't think one can go wrong either way though. JMO
 
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