Author Topic: Life expectancy of stock 5 speed tranny?  (Read 958 times)

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Offline Flhfxd

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Life expectancy of stock 5 speed tranny?
« on: February 08, 2018, 03:35:53 AM »
I heard an old, locally well known bike mechanic say that stock harley Evo 5 speed gearboxes are bullet proof and last forever if NOT ABUSED. So that got me thinking, how long would a trans last if looked after? Any comments appreciated.
"And the road goes on forever...... But I got one more silver dollar.....'

Offline guido4198

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Re: Life expectancy of stock 5 speed tranny?
« Reply #1 on: February 08, 2018, 03:45:18 AM »
The 5 speed Transmission on my 1985 FXR has been going 33 yrs and 285,000 mi. (so far).
In 2006 I replaced bearings and bushings but still running the original gearset.
Don't know if that counts as "bulletproof" or not...just my experience.

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Re: Life expectancy of stock 5 speed tranny?
« Reply #2 on: February 08, 2018, 03:49:40 AM »
285,000 miles is pretty bullet proof!
Mine is an '01 with 110,000 miles, some abuse, many hard downshifts, many hard upshifts, leaks a little at the pulley or shifter, third gear is a little crunchy, but still works very well.
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Offline jeffscycle

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Re: Life expectancy of stock 5 speed tranny?
« Reply #3 on: February 08, 2018, 09:41:50 AM »
   If they don't run out of oil, FOREVER is damn near possible. On early ones the main drive gear was built & welded out of 2 pieces, and sometimes the weld broke, but that even was a none event, as it just stopped turning. The main shafts on early one were prone to get the keyway blown out from cracked clutch hubs, but that's not the tranny's fault.
'01 FXDXT, '99 FXDL/XRD, '76 FLH

Offline FXRTexas

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Re: Life expectancy of stock 5 speed tranny?
« Reply #4 on: February 09, 2018, 03:45:43 PM »
My 93 FXR still has the original tranny in it. 141000 so far and I expect another 141000 out of it. Just add tranny fluid and roll on down the road.
If you are not having fun, you are doing it wrong.

Online Burnout

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Re: Life expectancy of stock 5 speed tranny?
« Reply #5 on: February 09, 2018, 04:24:21 PM »
The drive pulley has not fallen off of it yet?

Someone must have surely changed the pulley or it is a late 93 and got the 94 pulley.
They don't call me Ironhead Rick just because I'm "hard headed"

Offline guido4198

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Re: Life expectancy of stock 5 speed tranny?
« Reply #6 on: February 10, 2018, 03:51:24 AM »
The original H-D Clutch hub is definitely a weak point. I think I'm on my third one. The clutch release finger/throwout bearing/right side pushrod setup is another weak point. I just put #3 in there also, but the transmission in between them is darn good. :up:  :SM:


 

Offline Princess Butt

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Re: Life expectancy of stock 5 speed tranny?
« Reply #7 on: February 10, 2018, 05:27:29 PM »
Iím at 105k on my 1997 Road King, no issues so far. Did the throw out bearing once, otherwise good.

The shifter pawl spring might fail, which usually means opening up the gearbox to replace a $10 spring. Symptoms are the shift lever not returning to the center position. If you shift lever doesnít return to center, disconnect the linkage and confirm itís not sticking linkage.

Gear set will outlast us, unless horribly abused.
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Offline FXRTexas

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Re: Life expectancy of stock 5 speed tranny?
« Reply #8 on: February 10, 2018, 05:41:53 PM »
"The drive pulley has not fallen off of it yet?

Someone must have surely changed the pulley or it is a late 93 and got the 94 pulley."


Nope original drive pulley early 93 model. Drive train all original except belt and tires. Guess I am just lucky.

Herb
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Offline Ironheadmike

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Re: Life expectancy of stock 5 speed tranny?
« Reply #9 on: February 11, 2018, 05:48:43 AM »
I got 285000 miles out of my 92 springer and I wasn't always easy on it .

Offline Beave

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Re: Life expectancy of stock 5 speed tranny?
« Reply #10 on: February 11, 2018, 02:36:29 PM »
I have a 1986 FLST I bought new; stripped the trans pulley at 35k, fixed with lockplate.
Broke the weld in the main drive gear at 50k, fixed with a one pc gear.
Replaced all trans bearings at 250k when the ball thrust bearings made the clutch adjustment vary.
It has 292k now, still works great. 
I also have a 2005 FLHR with 235k.  I stripped the trans shifter lever under warranty. No other service other than 20k oil changes, Still works great.  They are about as bullet proof as you can get on a Harley.  Whenever someone talks on here about replacing their five speed with a six speed I just shake my head.
With speed comes stability.

Offline jm7480

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Re: Life expectancy of stock 5 speed tranny?
« Reply #11 on: February 11, 2018, 06:26:57 PM »
My friends 1993 FLHTP 205000 ,stock transmission on his third top end rebuild. He does not baby the bike but does the required maintenance.

Offline Evo160K

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Re: Life expectancy of stock 5 speed tranny?
« Reply #12 on: February 11, 2018, 07:10:41 PM »
My original 1990 trans went 95,000.  It locked up the morning after 2,000 mile trip.  Don't recall the issue, but the dealer said it had to be replaced.

Offline Flhfxd

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Re: Life expectancy of stock 5 speed tranny?
« Reply #13 on: February 11, 2018, 08:16:21 PM »
My original 1990 trans went 95,000.  It locked up the morning after 2,000 mile trip.  Don't recall the issue, but the dealer said it had to be replaced.
Locked up....Iíd be interested to here more on that.
"And the road goes on forever...... But I got one more silver dollar.....'

Offline Evo160K

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Re: Life expectancy of stock 5 speed tranny?
« Reply #14 on: February 15, 2018, 08:18:16 PM »
My original 1990 trans went 95,000.  It locked up the morning after 2,000 mile trip.  Don't recall the issue, but the dealer said it had to be replaced.
Locked up....I’d be interested to here more on that.


The bike wouldn't move when it was in gear, that's about all I remember

Offline Scott P

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Re: Life expectancy of stock 5 speed tranny?
« Reply #15 on: February 16, 2018, 03:08:06 AM »
Know of many that are well north of 100,000.
Even a 4 spd, if not abused, will give great service for long miles.
Otto Knowbetter sez, "Even a fish wouldn't get caught if he kept his mouth shut"

Offline JW113

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Re: Life expectancy of stock 5 speed tranny?
« Reply #16 on: February 17, 2018, 09:45:29 AM »
My '91 had 180K til I get it to my bro-in-law and has been parked ever since. Far as I can tell, the last thing that will ever wear out on an evo is the transmission.

-JW
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Offline Bruno-Katz Fokkerpilot

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Re: Life expectancy of stock 5 speed tranny?
« Reply #17 on: February 23, 2018, 03:29:34 AM »
And...use Redline shockproof tranny lube and they will last even longer.
Peace...those brief moments in history when everyone stands around reloading....

Offline Snag

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Re: Life expectancy of stock 5 speed tranny?
« Reply #18 on: February 26, 2018, 05:43:36 PM »
My original 1990 trans went 95,000.  It locked up the morning after 2,000 mile trip.  Don't recall the issue, but the dealer said it had to be replaced.
  I had a 4 speed do that ... at 50 MPH . 1st gear fork broke , they don't turn well with 2 gears engaged . Shattered the case , bent both shafts , broke the main drive pair and stretched the chain   .  Now then , my 1990 Ultra just got a complete rebuild at 117,000 because it started whining . Somebody has abused this one pretty bad , one of the end cap bolt holes at the bottom has been TIG welded and helicoiled , the 4th gear pair had something ran through it - probably a shifter return spring - and one other gear had some very minor damage . Replaced the 4th gear pair and every bearing and seal in there . Still got some noise but I think it's the primary chain , replaced the comp sprocket but not the chain . oops .
Snag
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Offline jimbo304

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Re: Life expectancy of stock 5 speed tranny?
« Reply #19 on: March 06, 2018, 02:23:16 PM »
   " And...use Redline shockproof tranny lube and they will last even longer. "

      Well I have a '95 Heritage with 87k on it that I bought new. As a lifelong mechanic, I'm religous about maintenance. Around 80,000 miles I put Red Line Shockproof in the tranny. A few thousand miles later I was riding one day & heard a LOUD whining even thru my earplugs & over the exhaust noise. Rode home & found the noise coming from the trans. Pulled it out & found both countershaft & mainshaft ball bearings rough & noisy. Replaced them & all is ok now. I keep both of them on my bench as a reminder.
      Look, I'm not positive the Red Line caused the bearing failure, but I'm suspicious enough to never use it again. Just sayin' .

Offline Flhfxd

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Re: Life expectancy of stock 5 speed tranny?
« Reply #20 on: March 06, 2018, 06:23:35 PM »
   " And...use Redline shockproof tranny lube and they will last even longer. "

      Well I have a '95 Heritage with 87k on it that I bought new. As a lifelong mechanic, I'm religous about maintenance. Around 80,000 miles I put Red Line Shockproof in the tranny. A few thousand miles later I was riding one day & heard a LOUD whining even thru my earplugs & over the exhaust noise. Rode home & found the noise coming from the trans. Pulled it out & found both countershaft & mainshaft ball bearings rough & noisy. Replaced them & all is ok now. I keep both of them on my bench as a reminder.
      Look, I'm not positive the Red Line caused the bearing failure, but I'm suspicious enough to never use it again. Just sayin' .

very interesting. Another thread on here mentions how goopy this stuff is. And perhaps not quite as invasive and beneficial as other products.
"And the road goes on forever...... But I got one more silver dollar.....'

Online tdrglide

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Re: Life expectancy of stock 5 speed tranny?
« Reply #21 on: March 07, 2018, 01:35:43 PM »
93,750 on my 92 fxr. Someone changed out the pully nut for 94 up long time ago. Thanks whoever you are. Had one come loose on another 92 fxr when was almost new.
If for some reason you have to use some kind of pink trany fluid. .... right now I'm using Honda HP trans oil 80/85w. Shifts better than ever. Cheap too.