2017 Harley Fat Bob First Ride Video Review

It sure looks the part. Thick black chunks of Dunlop rubber front and back, sharp-looking black machined aluminum slotted disc wheels, drag bars, burly Tommy Gun exhaust and a High Output Twin Cam 103 engine. Yup, the 2017 Harley Fat Bob looks the part. But does its get-up-and-go match its hot rod disposition?

During our tenure with the 2017 Fat Bob the Dyna averaged 39.605 gallons. It tipped our scales laden at 701.5 pounds at a front-biased 325 pound front to 376.5 pound back. First gear tops out at 45 mph at just under 5800 rpm while second taps out a hair below 65 mph. In sixth gear, the motorcycle exerts little stress on the engine as it settles into a loping cadence at a paltry 2370 rpm.

The model we tested was equipped with ABS, a $795 option. Harley’s current anti-lock braking system doesn’t have the same disconcerting pulse at the pedal as it did when Harley first launched its ABS. The dual discs on the front are powerful without being grabby, but overall stopping distance is still pretty long.

While a full review is in the works, check out our 2017 Harley Fat Bob First Ride Review video to find out more in the meantime.

2017 Fat Bob Stats – 39.605 mpg.       Weight – 701.5 lbs. (325 front, 376.5 back)


Vivid Black – $16,049
Color – $16,449
Custom Color – $16,999
ABS Option – $795
Security Option – $395
California Emissions – $200
Freight – $390

Length: 94.5 in.
Seat Height, Laden: 26.1 in.
Seat Height, Unladen: 27.2 in.
Ground Clearance: 4.9 in.
Rake: (steering head) (deg) 29
Trail: 4.9 in.
Wheelbase: 63.8 in.
Tires, Front Specification: 130/90B16 67H
Tires, Rear Specification: 180/70B16 77H
Fuel Capacity: 5 gal.
Oil Capacity (w/filter): 3 qt.
Weight, As Shipped: 673 lb.
Weight, In Running Order: 701.5 lb.

Engine: Air-cooled, High Output Twin Cam 103
Bore: 3.87 in.
Stroke: 4.38 in.
Displacement: 103.1 cu. In.
Compression Ratio: 9.6:1
Fuel System: Electronic Sequential Port Fuel Injection (ESPFI)

Primary Drive: Chain, 34/46 ratio
Gear Ratios (overall): 1st 9.311
Gear Ratios (overall): 2nd 6.454
Gear Ratios (overall): 3rd 4.793
Gear Ratios (overall): 4th 3.882
Gear Ratios (overall): 5th 3.307
Gear Ratios (overall): 6th 2.79

Exhaust: Chrome, “Tommy Gun” 2-1-2 collector exhaust with dual mufflers
Wheels, Front: Gloss Black Cast Aluminum Wheel w/ Laser Etched Graphics
Wheels, Rear: Gloss Black Cast Aluminum Wheel w/ Laser Etched Graphics
Brakes, Caliper: 4-piston fixed front, and 2-piston torque-free floating rear

Engine Torque: 99.5 ft-lb
Engine Torque (rpm): 3,750
Lean Angle, Right (deg.): 30
Lean Angle, Left (deg.): 31

Boost Milwaukee-Eight Performance with New Harley Screamin’ Eagle Stage Kits

Harley Screamin' Eagle Street Cannon Exhaust in black

Harley Screamin’ Eagle Street Cannon Exhaust in black

The potent performance of the new Harley-Davidson Milwaukee-Eight engine is amplified by new Screamin’ Eagle Performance Products available now from Harley-Davidson Genuine Motor Parts & Accessories. Building performance with precision, Screamin’ Eagle for Milwaukee-Eight ramps up horsepower, torque and throttle response without compromising the refined riding experience delivered by the new Big Twin engine in 2017 Harley-Davidson Touring models.

“Harley-Davidson Genuine Motor Parts & Accessories has a key advantage over the aftermarket – unmatched knowledge of the Milwaukee-Eight and the ability to engineer performance upgrades during the development of the engine,” said Scott Habegger Director of Portfolio Management. “Screamin’ Eagle Performance Products are not an after-thought or an add-on for Milwaukee-Eight. These kits were engineered alongside the engine for factory-level quality and fit, which is why only Harley-Davidson dealers can offer 50-state, U.S. EPA compliant Screamin’ Eagle performance parts backed by a factory warranty.”

Screamin’ Eagle Stage I, Stage II and Stage III upgrades for Milwaukee-Eight engines offer escalating performance benefits with components that have been engineered by Harley-Davidson to work together to boost output with no compromise in reliability or rideability.

Screamin’ Eagle Stage I for Milwaukee-Eight = Intake + Exhaust + Tuning Upgrade
Stage I is the foundation for further Milwaukee-Eight performance upgrades. High-performance air cleaners and slip-on mufflers flow more air into and out of the engine and produce a 5 to 10 percent average increase in power that riders can feel throughout the entire RPM range. Ideal for riders that want to enhance the performance, look and sound of their motorcycle, Stage I upgrades can be completed without engine disassembly, and no special tools are required.

Screamin' Eagle Ventilator Air Cleaner for Milwaukee-Eight engine

Screamin’ Eagle Ventilator Air Cleaner for Milwaukee-Eight engines

Screamin’ Eagle Air Cleaners for Milwaukee-Eight
Three Screamin’ Eagle performance air cleaner choices for Milwaukee-Eight include a K&N oiled cotton filter element that is washable and reusable.

• The Screamin’ Eagle High-Flow Air Cleaner (P/N 29400246 Chrome $184.95*, P/N 29400245 Black, $174.95*) filter element hides behind the stock air cleaner cover for a subtle look. The back-plate permits flow around the entire perimeter of the air cleaner and through the ram air opening at the front of the air cleaner cover for maximum airflow.

• The Screamin’ Eagle Ventilator Air Cleaner (P/N 29400298 Gloss Black, P/N 29400299 Chrome; $299.95*) offers a tapered, low-profile design for enhanced rider leg room. The exposed filter element and a cast back plate are designed to provide maximum air flow to the throttle body. A water repellent rain sock (sold separately) protects the oiled cotton filter element during stormy rides

• The Screamin’ Eagle Heavy Breather Performance Air Cleaner (P/N 29400263 Chrome, P/N 29400264 Gloss Black; $399.95*) features a low-profile cast aluminum tube that directs air into the throttle body with minimal turbulence for increased efficiency. A new slanted, compact filter shape allows installation on bikes with fairing lowers. The back-plate has integral breathers and covers the throttle body and electronics for a show-quality presentation. A water-repellent rain sock is included.

Harley Screamin' Eagle Heavy Breather Intake for Milwaukee-Eight engines

Harley Screamin’ Eagle Heavy Breather Intake for Milwaukee-Eight engines

Screamin’ Eagle Street Cannon Performance Slip-on Mufflers (P/N 64900552 Chrome, P/N 64900553 Satin Black; $499.95*) designed specifically for the Milwaukee-Eight engine enhance airflow and power by reducing exhaust gas back-pressure and enhancing the effects of wave and inertia scavenging. These 4.5-inch-diameter mufflers have a unique baffle design to produce a richer, deeper tone at idle, part throttle and when accelerating, yet comply with emissions and sound regulations. The muffler end caps are sold separately so customers can choose the style and color they prefer.

Optimized engine performance with Stage I intake and exhaust system must be accompanied by a new Electronic Control Module (ECM) calibration that tunes the EFI for the new components. The new Screamin’ Eagle Pro Street Tuner (P/N 41000008C, $299.95*) is designed to simplify ECM calibration as performance modifications are made. Unlike many aftermarket tuners, the Screamin’ Eagle Pro Street Tuner re-programs the motorcycle’s operating system; it isn’t a piggyback system that tries to fool the ECM into adding more fuel or changing the ignition timing. The Pro Street Tuner plugs into the bike’s data port, so no splicing or under-seat hardware is required. The Pro Street Tuner can be used to upload the latest Engine Control Module (ECM) calibrations to match a bike’s state-of-tune. Ideal for real-world street performance applications, the Pro Street Tuner provides adjustability to accommodate bike-to-bike variation and for changes to cams, heads, intake and exhaust while maintaining closed-loop fuel control for optimal fuel economy in the part-throttle operating range. All current street-compliant ECM calibrations are included in the software with unlimited access to future calibrations and free software updates downloadable via the user website. The Pro Street Tuner stores up to 15 minutes of run-time data that can be downloaded to a PC and viewed and evaluate the bike’s air/fuel ratio, oxygen sensor readings, engine speed and temperature, RPM and vehicle speed, throttle position, spark advance and much more. Diagnostic Trouble Codes can also be viewed and deleted. Unlike other race tuners or engine controllers, the Screamin’ Eagle Pro Street Tuner is 50-state EPA compliant and does not impact the Harley-Davidson factory warranty coverage.

Harley Screamin' Eagle Pro Street Tuner for Milwaukee-Eight engines

Harley Screamin’ Eagle Pro Street Tuner for Milwaukee-Eight engines

Screamin’ Eagle Stage II for Milwaukee-Eight = Stage I + Performance Camshaft
Take a Screamin’ Eagle Stage I equipped Harley-Davidson Milwaukee-Eight engine to the next level with a Screamin’ Eagle Milwaukee-Eight Stage II Kit. Each kit features a performance camshaft that increases air flow by lifting the cylinder head valves higher and holding them open for a longer period of time than the stock cam, which enables greater intake and exhaust flow. Harley-Davidson Genuine Motor Parts & Accessories offers two Screamin’ Eagle Stage II camshaft choices for the Milwaukee-Eight engine to allow riders to focus performance based on riding style. ECM calibration with Screamin’ Eagle Pro Street Tuner is required for proper installation.

• The Screamin’ Eagle Milwaukee-Eight Stage II – Torque Kit (P/N 92500047, $389.95*) delivers on-demand throttle response from low to mid RPM at cruising speed. Installed in the Milwaukee-Eight, this cam produces more than 100 lb-ft of rear wheel torque from 2,500 to 4,500 RPM in Milwaukee-Eight 107 engines, an ideal power band for passing slow-moving vehicles without a downshift and compensating for the weight of a passenger and luggage. Kit components include a Screamin’ Eagle SE8-447 cam, adjustable pushrods, pushrod covers, O-rings, and a cam cover gasket.

• Riders will get an adrenaline-pumping burst of speed from the Milwaukee-Eight engine by installing the Screamin’ Eagle Milwaukee-Eight Stage II – Power Kit (P/N 92500058, $389.95*). A Screamin’ Eagle power camshaft starts to pile on power at 3000 RPM and produces more than 90 rear wheel horsepower from 4,500 RPM to redline in Milwaukee-Eight 107 engines. This kit is ideal for riders who want to ride the bike aggressively while downshifting to lower gears to keep the engine operating in the higher RPM range. Kit components include a Screamin’ Eagle SE8-462 cam, adjustable pushrods, pushrod covers, O-rings, and a cam cover gasket.

Screamin’ Eagle Stage III for Milwaukee-Eight = Stage I + Big Bore Pistons and Cylinders
It’s a simple recipe for performance: Increase the size of the engine and you increase power output throughout the entire RPM range. Screamin’ Eagle Stage III kits take a Stage I-equipped Milwaukee-Eight 107 to 114 cubic inches, and the Milwaukee-Eight 114 engine to 117 cubic inches. Behind a Stage III Kit, touring riders will feel like they are solo even when loaded up with a passenger and cargo. Both kits feature bolt-on cylinders that can be installed without removing the engine from the motorcycle, reducing the required time and complexity of installation. The Stage III Kits include SE 4.075-inch cylinders, forged 11:1 coated aluminum pistons, high-performance piston rings, an SE8-498 camshaft, SE performance valve springs, SE high performance tappets, multi-layer coated head gaskets, and cylinder base and cam cover gaskets. ECM calibration with Screamin’ Eagle Pro Street Tuner is required for proper installation.

• The Screamin’ Eagle Stage III Kit for Milwaukee-Eight 107 (P/N 92500056, $1,595.95*) increases compression ratio from 10.0:1 to 11:1, boosts mid-range torque up to 24 percent and delivers up to 39 percent more power when compared to the original equipment engine configuration.

• The Screamin’ Eagle Stage III Kit for Milwaukee-Eight 114 (P/N 92500057, $1,595.95*) for CVO Touring models produces 100 to 110 rear-wheel horsepower from 4,750 RPM to redline and more than 100 lb-ft of rear-wheel torque from 2,750 to 5,750 RPM.

These and other Harley-Davidson Genuine Motor Parts & Accessories are available at more than 750 authorized retail locations in the United States and online.

*Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP), excluding taxes and shipping and labor cost for installation. Prices at local dealerships may vary.

AirFX USA Rear Air Suspension System Install (Intro)

AirFX Install on 2002 Electra Glide

Our 2002 Electra Glide is up on a bike jack and stripped down. However, for this install you only have to remove the seat, both rear shocks, both side covers, and the rear wheel and fender, as we’re going to mount the new AirFX air compressor under the battery box after disconnecting the battery.

By Chris Maida

Revamping the rear of a 2002 Electra Glide

In this part of our ongoing series on reworking a 2002 Electra Glide, we’re going to finish the AirFX front and rear air suspension system install we started two issues ago. In that article, we showed you how to bolt on a set of Air Ride cartridges. This time around we’ll be installing the rest of AirFX’s full bike kit, which consists of the rear shocks, air compressor, front and rear valve system, reservoir tank, micro-button package, and whatever lines, harnesses, etc. is needed to make the system complete.

Let’s start with the Magnum long stroke rear shocks (#FXA-2009-B-S/$900). The Magnums use a new shock technology that incorporates a double-sealed, 63mm, extra-large composite piston. This arrangement requires less air pressure and volume to operate, resulting in a consistently soft, smooth ride. The shock body uses an upper spherical bearing and lower stud kit that allow the shock body to pivot in all directions. This minimizes shock side-loading or pivot friction while increasing shock response when cornering. As for rebound, the rider can adjust this setting by adding or removing rebound air via the Schrader valve on each shock.

AirFX USA rear suspension install

After removing the bike’s batter and the bracket from the AirFX compressor, Tom positions the bracket in the center and front of the battery box and marks where he needs to drill four mounting 1/4″ holes.

The system’s compact compressor assembly (#FXA-2001/$160) is equipped with a thermal overload protector that will shut down the unit if it becomes overheated. Once cooled off, the compressor will automatically restart. This protects the compressor and ensures a long component service life. The compressor comes with an Omega-style mounting bracket and pre-installed insulated wiring.

AirFX USA air suspension compressor

The compressor is secured to the battery box using four 1/4″ X 3/4″ buttonhead bolts (not supplied) with a flat washer on top. Just a locknut is used under the compressor bracket.

We also installed AirFX’s Instant Up kit (#FXA-2012-2/$500), which comes with dual reservoirs, a compressor control box, pressure switch, and relay sub-control. The compressor control will automatically turn the compressor on at 170 psi and turn it off at 190 psi, so a supply of pressurized air is always at the ready whenever the ignition circuit is activated. A front control valve pair (#FXA-1015/$195) and rear control valve pair (#FXA-1014/$210) also come with the complete kit, as well as a micro-button package (#FXA-1010-MB/$200) that mounts on the handlebars, so the rider has easy access to the system’s controls.

AirFX USA shock connector to swingarm

Tom secures the bottom of the shock using an AirFX flat washer between the shock and swingarm and an AirFX flat washer and locknut on the outside.

So how does the bike’s owner like his new AirFX system? He loves it! In fact, two other owners who saw his bike had the same AirFX system installed on their new 2016 H-D Touring bikes. The accompanying photos and captions show you what was done to finish this installation.

AirFX USA rear suspension tank assembly secured

The tank assembly is secured to the right muffler support using the stock hardware, blue Loctite, and a 1/2″ socket.




Bullet Customs

Like what you see? The full article with all the steps, tips, tricks, and tools needed is in American Iron Magazine issue # 340! To order a back issue of this or any other issue of American Iron Magazine, visit Greaserag.com.
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AirFX two-button switch

After routing the switch harness up to the handlebars, the AirFX two-button switch is fastened to the stock front master cylinder mount clamp using a T-27 Torx.


2016 Harley XL1200CX Roadster Review

2016 Harley Roadster first ride

Gingerelli took the test bike on his favorite 50-mile loop, an assortment of cambered and off-cambered turns mixed with contorting S’s and sweepers, and it’s roads like that where the Roadster shined.

CX in the city, a roadster for the road  –  by Dain Gingerelli 

According to Harley-Davidson’s promotional literature the new XL1200CX Roadster is aimed dead-square at young riders, often termed Millennials. But tell that to the older guy — think Baby Boomer—who cast an envious eye on the Roadster, with its Velocity Red Sunglo paint shining brilliantly, which I had just fired up in the parking lot. And for the record, I’m of the Baby Boomer generation, too, and I rather enjoy this Sportster.

The older guy said nothing, though. He just stared, transfixed by the bike, soaking up the sum total of its parts and color. A chromed, low-slung handlebar catches the eye first, and behind it sits the familiar 3.3-gallon peanut-style gas tank; folks on Juneau Avenue now deem it a “walnut” tank, although if we’re going to break from tradition, I’m for calling it a “pecan” tank, even if it might send the wrong message as to its exact function and use.

So, there we were, standing in the parking lot with the older guy still wistfully gazing at the bike while I nonchalantly let the Roadster’s rubber-mounted 1200cc engine (Millennials and Baby Boomers alike would never refer to a Sportster engine in terms of cubic inches, although for the record the 1200 qualifies as a 74″) warm up, chugging and singing out the proverbial potato-potato-potato cadence that all Harleys are known for. I especially enjoy the XL1200CX’s exhaust note, a result of the new free-flowing shorty mufflers that create an unmistakable baritone burble, so unlike the wimpy, semi-flatulent sounds that resonate from most stock bikes today.

2016 XL1200CX Review

In his 2016 Roadster review Gingerelli said the suspension’s spring and damping calibration are well-matched to soak up bumps in the road better than any other Sportster.

Satisfied with the engine having oil in all its internal nooks and crannies, I sought first gear — an easy task, as Harley engineers have used every conceivable trick in their toolbox to minimize clutch lever pull effort on Sportsters, so when you snick the five-speed tranny’s shift lever up or down, your foot is rewarded with a positive click — and rode away. As the engine’s rpm rose to a crescendo, the exhaust note only got better, no doubt prompting the older guy’s pulse to quicken even more. I have no idea whether or not that Baby Boomer eventually bought a Roadster on account of that little episode, but The Motor Company is hedging its bets that Millennials will use similar sidewalk experiences to decide that it’s time to step up and make a purchase. The betting, too, is that the deal includes a new Roadster. As one Harley spokesman, Michael Spaeth, who heads the marketing team that put Millennials in the Roadster’s crosshairs, recently stated on a public radio broadcast: “…the new Roadster that we just launched [is] really targeting that kind of urban demographic.”

So, what sets this XL apart from all others in the Sportster stable? Plenty, really, even though the XL1200CX, rated at 549 pounds dry, shares the same basic platform in terms of frame and engine with the other 1200 models. Besides that drooping handlebar, you’ll see that the Roadster rides on all-new, blacked-out cast aluminum wheels wrapped with Dunlop/Harley-Davidson rubber, and this is the only Sportster rolling with an 18″ rear wheel and tire. The front 19″ wheel is supported by a 43mm inverted fork — the only one in the Sportster lineup — that has triple-rate springs calibrated to its Premium cartridge damping system. The rear shocks are based on this year’s new nitrogen gas-charged units for Sportsters, which have threaded collars to precisely adjust spring preload to suit your weight and riding style. Moreover, the fork and shocks offer a claimed 4.5″ and 3.2″ of travel, more than any of the suspenders found on the other Sporties.

The suspension’s spring and damping calibration are well-matched to soak up bumps in the road, too; clearly better than any other Sportster does. The Roadster’s suspenders are less prone to bottom out, too, and the ride transmits less road surface feedback through the custom-formed seat and rubber-wrapped folding footpegs.

Things aren’t quite as pleasant at the handlebar, though. Simply, the handlebar is too wide, measuring about 32″ from end to end, which forces you to assume a riding position that makes you feel as though you’re ready to do a pushup. Here’s my fix: by nature, any Harley’s purpose in life is to be modified, and by that right I’d change the bar to better suit my riding needs. There’s enough room to shorten the bar at both ends without disrupting space for the hand controls, so I’d clip about 1/2″-3/4″ from each end. That would slightly raise the angle of your torso in relation to the steering stem, improving the rider triangle in the process. Doing so would also relieve some pressure from your wrists and hands while pulling them in for a more definitive “feel” of the front end when cornering (think road racer ergonomics).

2016 Harley Roadster engine

The 2016 Harley Roadster features a rubber-mounted, air-cooled, 1200cc Evolution engine. Harley rates the Roadster’s engine torque at nearly 10% higher than the rest of the XL1200 lineup.

A by-product of clipping the handlebar also means a narrower bike, essential for splitting lanes or filtering forward through an urban jungle’s stop-and-go traffic. And from a cosmetic standpoint, shortening the handlebar would reduce its gull-wing effect in relation to the bike’s styling lines.

For the most part, though, there’s not much customization necessary to make the Roadster look cool. The fenders have been bobbed to the extreme, so they’re shorter than those on any other Sportster; the belt guard and muffler heat shields have racer-like slots for a sportier look; the taillights are integrated into the turn signals that are posted onto the bare-bones rear fender struts, and the license plate attaches to Harley’s signature Dark Customs left-side mounting system. Staring back at you is a 4″ electronic analog tachometer with built-in digital read-out speedo and gear indicator. All minimalist features that are popular with urban bikers.

And then there’s the seat. Positioned 30.9″ off the deck, it’s styled in the spirit of all café racers. The seat’s rear hump helps position you in the rider’s triangle, and you’ll notice a grab strap on the rear portion. That’s for a passenger (DOT law requires the strap), making this a two-up motorcycle. The upholstery is designed to mimic body armor that’s so popular among Millennials today, but, more to the point, the seat is so darn comfortable, yet slender enough for using body English when leaning left and right while cornering on your favorite back road.

For the full ride review, custom bike features, tech stories and more,
CLICK HERE American Iron Magazine issue 339

Also available in digital format CLICK HERE American Iron Digital

Screamin’ Eagle High-Flow Air Cleaner for Milwaukee-Eight

Screamin'Eagle High Flow Air Cleaner for Milwaukee Eight

Screamin’Eagle High Flow Air Cleaner for Milwaukee Eight

Feed a Harley-Davidson Milwaukee-Eight engine more air for more power with this new Screamin’ Eagle High-Flow Air Cleaner (P/N 29400246,
$184.95) from Harley-Davidson Genuine Motor Parts & Accessories. Designed to fit behind the original equipment air cleaner cover, this Screamin’ Eagle High-Flow kit features a back plate sized to provide an open-element function that permits airflow around the entire perimeter of the air cleaner and through the ram air opening at the front. The kit fits 2017 Touring and Trike models (except CVO models) and includes the die-cast back plate, a high-flow oiled-cotton filter element, all required gaskets and hardware, and a diamond-cut Screamin’ Eagle medallion. All models require ECM calibration with Screamin’ Eagle Pro Street Tuner (priced separately) for proper installation. This kit is 50-state U.S. EPA compliant.

These and other Harley-Davidson Genuine Motor Parts & Accessories are available at more than 750 authorized retail locations in the United States and online.

*Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP), excluding taxes and shipping. Prices at local dealerships may vary.

About Harley-Davidson Motor Company
Since 1903, Harley-Davidson Motor Company has fulfilled dreams of personal freedom with cruiser, touring and custom motorcycles, riding experiences and events, and a complete line of Harley-Davidson motorcycle parts, accessories, general merchandise, riding gear and apparel. For more information, visit www.h-d.com.

Headwinds LED Bulb Install on Harley Road King (Intro)

Headwinds LED bulb install on 1999 Road King

Here’s our 1999 Road King in the driveway and ready to get a new Headwinds LED headlight. Be sure to put a towel over the front fender to protect it.

By Chris Maida / Photos by Elayne Maida

This simple headlight bulb swap will greatly increase your ability to see the road and any road hazards while riding at night

I love simple upgrades! being able to make a simple parts swap to fix a problem or weak area of performance on a bike is like taking a pill to get rid of a headache. It’s quick, easy, and makes my life more enjoyable. Upgrading from the stock halogen bulb on your Harley to one of Headwinds’ H4 LED headlight bulbs (#8-9030-H4/$99.95) is just that kind of upgrade and definitely worth the cash and time to make it happen. We did this upgrade on a 1999 Road King, and the change was dramatic. This LED setup boasts a low beam that’s much brighter than the stock high beam, with a wider field of light thanks to the LED’s 1,800 lumens compared to the halogen’s 1,100 lumens, yet the LED uses less power than the stock bulb.

Headwinds H4 Lamp install American Iron Magazine

Use a #1 Phillips screwdriver to remove the stock ring’s screws, and then remove the stock ring and set it aside for reinstallation later.

The Headwinds kit includes the LED bulb, driver, fan (keeps the bulb cool and improves performance and longevity), and three-prong connector. Installation is all plug-and-play. No wires to cut or splice. Just plug stuff together, stuff it into the headlight bucket, and hit the road. The accompanying photos and captions lay out the entire process from start to finish. We didn’t have to adjust our headlight after the install, but you should check yours just to be sure. You can see how to do that on the Headwinds web site or in the manual for your bike.

Harley headlamp rubber boot

Now pull the rubber boot from the back of the headlight to uncover the bulb-holding assembly.



Like what you see? The full article with all the steps, tips, tricks, and tools needed is in American Iron Magazine issue # 339! To order a back issue of this or any other issue of American Iron Magazine, visit Greaserag.com.
Follow American Iron Magazine on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram!
To subscribe to the PRINT edition, click here. To receive DIGITAL DELIVERY, click here.
Headwinds foam stick pad for LED driver

Headwinds supplies a foam stick pad to secure the LED driver to the headlight housing. We went with some wire-ties for our installation.


Harley-Davidson Sales, Profits Down in 3Q 2016 Financial Report

Harley-Davidson, Inc. (NYSE:HOG) third quarter 2016 diluted earnings per share decreased 7.2 percent to $0.64 compared to diluted EPS of $0.69 in the same period in 2015. Net income was $114.1 million on consolidated revenue of $1.27 billion compared to net income of $140.3 million on consolidated revenue of $1.32 billion in the third quarter of 2015.

Harley-Davidson worldwide retail motorcycle sales in the third quarter were down 4.5 percent, primarily on weak U.S. industry trends. Harley-Davidson retail motorcycle sales in the U.S. were down 7.1 percent compared to the year-ago quarter, with the overall U.S. industry also down for the same period. Harley-Davidson’s U.S. market share for the quarter was 52.3 percent in the 601cc-plus segment, essentially flat compared to the third quarter in 2015. Harley-Davidson international retail sales increased by 1.0 percent over the prior year quarter.

“We continue to effectively navigate a fiercely competitive environment and an ongoing weak U.S. industry,” said Matt Levatich, president and chief executive officer, Harley-Davidson, Inc. “We are pleased with the positive results and the enthusiasm we’ve seen for our Model Year 2017 motorcycles, featuring the new Milwaukee-Eight engine. We are confident that the entire line-up will drive retail sales growth for the remainder of 2016 and position us well heading into the spring riding season next year.”

The Milwaukee-Eight engine packs innovative technologies that deliver improved horsepower, torque, and comfort and enhanced sound. It was introduced on Touring motorcycles in August as part of the Model Year 2017 product launch. Response to the new model year motorcycles drove increased retail sales in September over prior year.

Through nine months, Harley-Davidson 2016 net income was $645.0 million on consolidated revenue of $4.89 billion compared to nine-month 2015 net income of $710.0 million on consolidated revenue of $4.81 billion. Diluted EPS was $3.55 compared to diluted EPS of $3.41 in the year-ago period. Worldwide retail motorcycle sales were down 1.9 percent compared to the same period in 2015. International retail sales were up 3.3 percent, offset by a decline of 4.7 percent in U.S. retail sales.

Recognizing the continued slower industry growth in the U.S., the company will streamline its operations in the fourth quarter of 2016. It expects to incur expenses of approximately $20 million to $25 million in the fourth quarter, primarily for employee separation and reorganization costs.

“Our value as a company and as a brand is the sum of 113 years of commitment to our riders and the freedom seekers we will inspire to ride in the future,” said Levatich. “We remain intensely focused on growing the sport and delivering strong business results.”


Retail Harley-Davidson Motorcycle Sales

$ in thousands 3rd Quarter Nine Months
2016 2015 Change 2016 2015 Change
Americas Region
   U.S. 45,469 48,918 (7.1)% 135,581 142,196 (4.7)%
   Canada 2,663 2,554 4.3% 8,946 8,414 6.3%
   Latin America 2,605 2,818 (7.6)% 7,064 8,091 (12.7)%
Europe, Middle East, Africa (EMEA) Region 10,224 10,031 1.9% 37,947 35,598 6.6%
Asia Pacific Region 7,994 7,857 1.7% 24,141 23,471 2.9%
Worldwide Total 68,955 72,178 (4.5)% 213,679 217,770 (1.9)%

Retail sales in EMEA were up 1.9 percent in the third quarter and up 6.6 percent for the first nine months due to the popularity of Model Year 2016 cruiser motorcycles and our focus on driving demand through test rides. Asia Pacific retail sales were up 1.7 percent in the quarter and up 2.9 percent for the first nine months compared to 2015 behind strong growth in Australia and Japan.

Motorcycles and Related Products Segment Results

$ in thousands 3rd Quarter Nine Months
2016 2015 Change 2016 2015 Change
Motorcycle Shipments (vehicles) 48,611 53,472 (9.1)% 219,807 218,233 0.7%
   Motorcycles 788,856 812,398 (2.9)% 3,437,066 3,376,356 1.8%
   Parts & Accessories 231,279 252,226 (8.3)% 673,192 692,938 (2.8)%
   General Merchandise 65,289 69,008 (5.4)% 211,664 212,954 (0.6)%
Gross Margin Percent 33.6 34.6 (1.0)pts 36.1 37.9 (1.8)pts
Operating Income 108,929 143,065 (23.9)% 764,135 869,122 (12.1)%
Operating Margin Percent 10.0% 12.5% (2.5)pts 17.6% 20.2% (2.6)pts


Revenue from motorcycles and related products was down compared to the third quarter in 2015, primarily behind decreased motorcycle shipments. Operating margin as a percent of revenue decreased versus the prior year as a result of lower gross margin behind unfavorable manufacturing expense and higher year-over-year SG&A.


Financial Services Segment Results

$ in thousands 3rd Quarter Nine Months
2016 2015 Change 2016 2015 Change
Revenue 183,183 177,109 3.4% 547,505 513,093 6.7%
Operating Income 69,447 72,771 (4.6)% 215,391 219,348 (1.8)%


Operating income from financial services was down 4.6 percent in the third quarter compared to the year ago period.


Harley-Davidson continues to expect to ship 264,000 to 269,000 motorcycles in 2016, which is approximately down 1 percent to up 1 percent from 2015. In the fourth quarter of 2016, the company expects to ship 44,200 to 49,200 motorcycles compared to 48,149 motorcycles shipped in the year-ago period. The company continues to expect full-year 2016 operating margin of approximately 15 to 16 percent for the Motorcycles segment. The company continues to expect 2016 capital expenditures for Harley-Davidson, Inc. of $255 million to $275 million.

Income Tax Rate

For the first nine months, Harley-Davidson’s effective tax rate was 32.9 percent compared to 34.8 percent in 2015. The company continues to expect its full-year 2016 effective tax rate will be approximately 33 percent.

Cash Flow

Cash and marketable securities totaled $795.3 million at the end of the third quarter, compared to $1.42 billion a year ago. During the first nine months of the year, Harley-Davidson generated $927.8 million of cash from operating activities compared to $1.02 billion for the same period in 2015.

Shareholder Returns

In the third quarter, the company paid a cash dividend of $0.35 per share. During the same time period, on a discretionary basis, the company repurchased 2.1 million shares of Harley-Davidson common stock for $104.6 million. Also in the third quarter, there were approximately 179.3 million weighted-average diluted shares outstanding, compared to approximately 204.6 million shares in the year-ago quarter. As of September 25, 2016, a total of 20.9 million shares remained on board-approved share repurchase authorizations.

Company Background

Harley-Davidson, Inc. is the parent company of Harley-Davidson Motor Company and Harley-Davidson Financial Services. Since 1903, Harley-Davidson Motor Company has fulfilled dreams of personal freedom with custom, cruiser and touring motorcycles, riding experiences and events and a complete line of Harley-Davidson motorcycle parts, accessories, general merchandise, riding gear and apparel. Harley-Davidson Financial Services provides wholesale and retail financing, insurance, extended service and other protection plans and credit card programs to Harley-Davidson dealers and riders in the U.S., Canada and other select international markets. For more information, visit Harley-Davidson’s Web site at www.harley-davidson.com.




Harley Continues to Support Breast Cancer Survivors with 2017 Pink Label Collection

Hot Pink Helmet, Fleece and More Added to 2017 Pink Label Collection Line-Up

Harley-Davidson firmly believes that nobody rides alone, on the road or through life. That commitment is behind the Harley-Davidson Pink Label Collection, a program inspired by the struggles and courage of riders and passengers who’ve been impacted by breast cancer.

The 2017 Harley-Davidson Pink Label Collection is a special product offering of 37 items, each featuring hot-pink trim and a special pink ribbon label or logo that represents the purpose behind the purchase of each item. At least three percentof the proceeds from sales of the Harley-Davidson Pink Label Collection is donated to partner organizations offering education and support to breast cancer survivors. Since its launch in 2010, the Harley-Davidson Pink Label program has donated more than $2 million dollars for the program partners. .

“Pink Label gives everyone in the Harley-Davidson community the power to make a real difference,” said Claudia Garber, Harley-Davidson Marketing Manager. “Harley-Davidson has made a year-round commitment through the Pink Label Program and our dealers to both support those impacted by breast cancer, and to inspire others to do the same.”

Harley Women's Pink Label Ultra Light Half-Helmet

Harley Women’s Pink Label Ultra Light Half-Helmet

Harley-Davidson Pink Label Collection program partners offer national reach and a distinct type of care:

• ABCD: After Breast Cancer Diagnosis offers free peer-to-peer mentoring starting with a Helpline staffed by breast cancer survivors and collaborates with the Walter Reed Medical Center and others to train mentors nationwide.

• National Breast Cancer Foundation provides help through early detection, education, and support services and offers the number one breast cancer app in iTunes, “Beyond the Shock.”

• Young Survival Coalition focuses on serving the unique needs of women under the age of 40 who are facing breast cancer.

New Harley-Davidson Pink Label Collection Apparel and Gear

The new Pink Label Stitched Fleece Jacket (P/N 98579-17VW, from $110.00*) offers a contrast in texture with stitched overlay panels of ripstop front and back. The body is cozy black polyester bonded micro-fleece that’s anti-pilling to look great for the long haul. The extended cuffs have thumbholes to help keep hands warm. The hem is adjustable with a bungee-and-toggle located inside two hand warmer pockets. A Pink Label medallion is affixed to the front hem. Offered in XS to 3W plus Petite and Tall sizes.

Straight from the urban jungle, the new Pink Label Leopard Accent Hoodie (P/N 99129-17VW, from $80.00*) features a pink leopard-print lining in the hood. The cotton/ploy blend burnout fleece is washed for a worn appearance, with contrasting raglan sleeves and raw-edge seams. The Pink label logo is placed on the front kangaroo pocket. Printed graphics are embellished with rhinestones. Offered in XS to 3W sizes.

Pink leopard print lines the placket, cuffs and side slits of the new Pink Label Waffle Knit Henley (P/N 99145-17VW, from $65.00*), a soft, comfortable shirt executed in cotton/poly blend fabric. The raglan sleeves, collar and button placket contrast with the body. The Pink Label woven label is on the front left hem. Graphics on the front and back are printed, with rhinestone embellishment on the back. Offered in XS to 3W sizes.

A shell made of fiberglass and Spectra fibers makes the new Women’s Pink Label Ultra-Light Half Helmet (P/N 98326-17VX, $230.00*) very strong and very lightweight – at just 1 pound 12 ounces this is the lightest women’s helmet offered by Harley-Davidson. It features the adjustable Comfort Dial system for perfect comfort every time you put it on. The antimicrobial liner fights odors and is removable and washable to make it easier to keep the helmet fresh, and it has speaker pockets that will fit Harley-Davidson headsets. The stylish, low-profile visor is removable. Offered in 2XS to 2XL sizes.

Visit h-d.com/pinklabel to learn more and shop the full line of options. Pink Label and Harley-Davidson MotorClothes apparel are available at more than 750 authorized retail locations in the United States and online.

*Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP), excluding taxes and shipping. Prices at local dealerships may vary

About Harley-Davidson Motor Company
Harley-Davidson Motor Company produces custom, cruiser and touring motorcycles and offers a complete line of Harley-Davidson motorcycle parts, accessories, riding gear and apparel, and general merchandise. For more information, visit www.h-d.com.

Blinging Out a Fat Boy: H-D 6-Spoke Rear Wheel & Pulley Install (Intro)

Harley 6-spoke wheel rear wheel and pulley install

Here’s Dan from Rob’s Dyno Service installing the new metal valve from the H-D wheel installation kit into the new chrome H-D 6-spoke rear wheel using a ½” deep socket he ground down for this purpose.

By Chris Maida

Part I: Installing a new chrome Harley-Davidson 6-spoke rear wheel and pulley, with a new H-D polished rotor and Shinko 150/80-16” rear tire

Want to add some instant flash to your bike? Bolt on a nice set of custom wheels! When I had my bike shop, back in the day, guys would come in before the new riding season and ask how they could change the look of their bike without going for a complete overhaul. My answer was to change the wheels and paint job. After all, once the front end and engine are chromed or blacked-out, you’re done there. But bolt on a slick set of wheels with matching rotors and pulley, and you’ll totally change the look of the bike. And, though not cheap, you get a lot of bang for your buck!

Mounting a Shinko tire on an H-D 6-spoke rear wheel

After checking the directional arrow and locating the balance dot alongside the valve stem, he installs the new Shinko 150/80-16” tire onto the H-D 6-Spoke wheel.

And that’s exactly what we decided to do to step up the look of a 2006 Fat Boy. Though those iconic solid wheels are a trademark of the Fat Boy, the stock units were dull, pitted, and, in short, needed replacing after many miles of hard service. Since the original Harley-Davidson components had served the owner well, he decided to go back to The Motor Company for its replacements. He selected a set of H-D’s Slotted 6-Spoke wheels that feature a combination of polished and textured chrome finishes on the spokes, rim, and hub. We also got a matching rear pulley and new standard rotors all around. In this article, however, we’ll just be installing the rear wheel setup, and we’ll do the front wheel in a future issue.

This cast aluminum 16″ rear wheel (#43930-08/$559.95) requires, as all Harley P&A wheels do, the purchase of a separate H-D wheel installation kit (#43854-08A/$89.95). These kits are specific to year and model bikes, so be sure to order the correct one for your bike. However, the installation procedure is the same. For our matching cast aluminum textured chrome rear pulley (#40447-01/$399.95), we also got a set of chrome bolts and flat washers (#94773-00A/$29.95). There’s no way we were going to reuse the old, beat-up hardware. When installing this pulley onto the wheel, make sure you properly align its spoke pattern with the wheel’s pattern. Our rear rotor (#41832-05A/$149.95) is a polished version of the stock unit since, like the hardware, the original had seen better days and would ruin the look of our new wheel package. Of course, we went with a set of new chrome rotor hardware (#46647-05/$13.95).

H-D 6-spoke rear wheel install

With the rear wheel in a lift’s wheel chock, he uses a wheel bearing installation too to install a wheel bearing (both the same) from the H-D installation kit into the right (primary) side of the wheel, as indicated by the lines on the wheel hub.

When it came to getting a new set of tires, the bike’s owner decided to go with a pair of Shinko 777 tires, which are available exclusively from the HardDrive catalog. We got a 150/80-16″ (#87-4597/$129.95) for the rear wheel. This tire features a newly redesigned carcass that has a higher load rating thanks to heavier nylon belting. This results in ample load capacity, while also giving more stability and longer tire life. The 777 series is specifically designed for cruiser machines and is available in a multitude of sizes for many V-twin models.

We went to see our old buddies Rob and Dan at Rob’s Dyno Service to do the install. We’ve done many articles with these guys, and they always do the job right, the first time. Check out the photos and captions to see how to do this installation in your own garage. In a future issue, we’ll bolt on the new matching front wheel and new rotor, as well as another new Shinko tire. AIM

H-D wheel bearing and center wheel spacer H-D installation kit

Dan slips the new wheel bearing and the proper center wheel spacer (spacer C #43608-00 for our application), both from the H-D installation kit, onto the shaft of his wheel bearing installation tool.



HARDDRIVE – HDtwin.com

Harley-Davidson – harley-davidson.com

Rob’s Dyno Service – RobsDyno.com  978/895-0441

Like what you see? The full article with all the steps, tips, tricks, and tools needed is in American Iron Magazine issue # 340! To order a back issue of this or any other issue of American Iron Magazine, visit Greaserag.com.
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Harley Reportedly Set to Lay Off 200 Employees in the Fall

Harley-Davidson logo

Reports by The York Daily Record (YRD) and Milwaukee Sentinel Journal state Harley-Davidson is preparing to lay off approximately 200 employees this fall. The cuts come as a Harley adjusts “our production plan to align with 2016 guidance.”

That guidance includes a cut in shipment projections to 264,000 to 269,000 motorcycles announced in Harley’s second quarter financial report of 2016, down from the initial projections of 269,000 to 274,000 released in its first quarter 2016 report. This comes on the heels of lowered shipment totals in 2015 as well which were first projected to be in the 282,000 to 287,000 range before scaling back due in part to aggressive price cuts by competitors and a strong dollar hurting sales internationally. Retail motorcycle sales on the whole were down 1.3% for in 2015 with 264,627 units sold compared to 2014 totals of 267,999 motorcycles.

According to news reports, the layoffs will be divided between its York, Menomonee Falls, and Tomahawk plants. The York Daily Record reports 117 workers will be laid off at the York, Pa. assembly plant that handles production of Harley’s Touring, Trike, Softail and CVO motorcycles, while the Milwaukee Sentinel Journal reports 35 layoffs are slated for Harley’s windshield and plastic-parts plant in Tomahawk, Wis. This leaves 48 cuts to Harley’s engine division at Menomonee Falls, Wis. These numbers may vary as “some of the reductions will come from not filling vacant positions” according to YDR.

While recent sales have been slow, the curve has the potential to swing upward as Harley-Davidson just released new engine platforms, a 107” and 114” version of its new eight valve, single cam Milwaukee-Eight V-Twin. The 107” Milwaukee-Eight will power Harley-Davidson’s Touring motorcycles and trikes while the 114” can be found in its premium CVO models. Harley-Davidson also updated suspension on its tourers, another attractive factor to potential buyers.