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Buying a HF Roadglide


drodg

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I have a friend who is tempting me to buy a new Roadglide. He is a HD dealer of course. I have ridden a couple of them and like them except for the buffeting of the stock and the short windscreen. My question does the 3+ taller screen or a Cee Bailey screen cure it? I am so used to the adjustable screen on my RT I am spoiled. Thanks

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As a rider of a Road King Classic, I have experienced the buffeting you describe. I have also been confounded by the fogging of my windscreen because of the cavitation that occurs on cool mornings when I am still warming up the engine at slower speeds.

 

Actually, I went to a short screen so I could see over the fogging and stuff. Of course, the buffeting increased but I found it to be a minor annoyance. You will be able to add a taller screen to accommodate the buffeting you find to be negative, but I doubt that you are going to be able to avoid the fogging that becomes dangerous at low speeds in town. It is just a fact of life that I believe is a direct result of the way that the engine breaths. The engine heat simply rises into the air pocket created behind the windscreen. Aside from a shorter windscreen, stopping or going faster is the only thing that I have found to avoid the problem.

 

I don't think that I have been much help.

 

Also, I would be careful to do your research regarding the the newer models that have been recalibrated to achieve leaner emissions standards. I have read that they run hotter and that extra temperature might exacerbate the problem.

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HD is a having a big announcement next week about its upcoming product line - you might want to wait for that. HD retailers inventories are a little high at the moment.

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I have a 2001 FLHTCI. I immediately put the extra high windshield on it and have loved it for the six years and 38,000 miles I've put on it. I am 5'11" and have a standard height seat. I get total protection and can ride without sunglasses if I choose. thumbsup.gif

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I did not buy a Road Glide for the exact same reason you described..I could not stand the buffeting to my head looking over the screen and was not willing to put a screen on that required me to look through it..I think the problem is aggravated due to the relatively long distance between the scteen and the rider..Quite a bit further forward than on the Electra Glide..

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Interesting on the inventories. I think that might be the issue here. I wonder if the hot engine problem on 2007 is not scaring some people away until they get it resolved.

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Interesting on the inventories. I think that might be the issue here. I wonder if the hot engine problem on 2007 is not scaring some people away until they get it resolved.

 

I wouldn't buy another HD newer than 05 for that reason. I have heard from many friends that have bought the new stuff and they are not happy; heat, noise, misc problems.

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baggerchris

I own a Softail now, and have ridden HD for over 30 years. That being said, be aware that on the big baggers, the swing arm is connected to the Tranny, which is connected to the Engine and the Engine is RUBBERmounted to the frame. There have been many reports of high speed wobbleing especially into fast sweepers due to this method of swing arm attachment. There seems to be no answer as to why some of them wobble and some do not. There are several $400 and up fixes, but you MAY not experience anything like the cornering and high speed manuevering you have come to expect. Also, at least up until now, HD will NOT put an oil cooler on the bikes from the factory, and this makes the cooling issue worse.(you have to have one mounted at your own expense)

I love the new Street Glides and want one, but will wait until later as I know HD usually has issues with new bikes, and generally takes at least two years to fix things up.

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Lawman,

I was convinced I needed a Road Glide until I rode one. My impression was the same as yours - too much distance between the rider and the windscreen causes the excessive buffeting.

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I have a 07 RoadGlide and the windshield was the second thing I changed (The first was to remove the heel shifter) The stock screen was so distorted it was dangerous.

 

Although I have purchased screens from Cee Bailey's before, Clearview out of Colorado seems to make a better replacement for the RG. I ordered one shorter than stock which I can see over just fine but that allows some helmet buffeting. Solved That with a Laminar Lip that can be popped on or off as needed.

 

A second source of buffeting is from the air flow off the bottom of the fairing that hits your body and is directed up into the helmet. You can eleminate most of that by holding your legs against the tank of if you live in a cooler climate, adding the accessory lower fairings ($$$)

 

Short answer is that you will not achieve the smooth flow that you are accustomed to on the beemer, but it is manageable and I feel is a more than fair trade off for the extra comfort of the RG.

 

The heat issue just hasn't bothered me, even in Florida unless I am in stop and go traffic. The motor is hot, but there are thigh shields available that deflect the heat so that I am not aware of it as long as the bike is moving .

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Solved That with a Laminar Lip that can be popped on or off as needed.

 

What is this "laminar lip"? I can't find it on the Clearview site.

 

Edit: I see it is not a Clearview product. Will research via Google.

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chrisolson

On my wife's fat boy, the buffeting was solved by adding fork mounted lowers / wind deflectors ... good up to about 80 then some buffeting starts to creep back ... the screen itself is not tall, even she (at 5') can see over it.

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I ride an '06 Road Glide and '06 12RT. I've noticed that the Harley is ridden much less since the BMW arrived. For me they are two different experiences. The Harley will put a smile on your face, every time, travelling at moderate speeds through the country side. Everything else I take the BMW, it is a great bike. My main concern with the HD (it's my third one) is the brakes, I can change the airflow. Does anybody know of really good aftermarket brakes for HD? Or is it allowed to ask another question on an airflow thread?

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Does anybody know of really good aftermarket brakes for HD? Or is it allowed to ask another question on an airflow thread?

 

confused.gifconfused.gifconfused.gif "H. D." and "good brakes" just does not compute... confused.gifconfused.gif

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Lawman,

I was convinced I needed a Road Glide until I rode one. My impression was the same as yours - too much distance between the rider and the windscreen causes the excessive buffeting.

 

Same here. I went from the HD dealer to the BMW dealer for test rides. Not even close. I went for the RT.

 

AS far as the Harley Factor, around here the Road Glide is a redheaded stepchild. The Harley guys turn up there noses and everyone else will say something like, "That's a funny looking Harley".

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Interesting on the inventories. I think that might be the issue here. I wonder if the hot engine problem on 2007 is not scaring some people away until they get it resolved.
The engine heat on a stock '07 TwinCam is significant. In fact, damn hot. But, the bigger problem with the '07s is the uncertainty around the 5th gear "clatter" that is plaguing a large number of '07s. I just moved off an '07 RG and back to the BMW family - in large part due to the heat, transmission clatter and the wind buffeting.

 

I still very much like Harleys but don't foresee ever going back to a touring model.

 

By the way, check out this link for a list of the '08 Twin Cam models - including a new softail chopper - the FXCW. (And remember you heard it here first.) wink.gif

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ShovelStrokeEd

For the marginally less fat of wallet, Performance Machine offers all the brake your HD can stand. Problem is, sticky rubber to take advantage of all that good braking is not available. Not sure I would like to lock the front on a dresser and try to recover. The rear should be less of a problem but, until you have rubber that grips the road much better than the tires fitted to most HD's better brakes may well be a two edged sword.

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I have my reservations about the Roadglide. I love my R12Rt and I just think that besides service convenience the HD doesn't have alot going for it. I guess I look around at all the HD riders and wonder what I am missing. They do look cool though.

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baggerchris

If you want the best after market brakes for a HD, google Brembo Harley Brakes. J&P have them also.

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I have a friend who is tempting me to buy a new Roadglide. He is a HD dealer of course. I have ridden a couple of them and like them except for the buffeting of the stock and the short windscreen. My question does the 3+ taller screen or a Cee Bailey screen cure it? I am so used to the adjustable screen on my RT I am spoiled. Thanks

 

Buffeting: quit wearing a helmet and the problem largely disappears. ooo.gif I just took delivery on my new RG. The windshield is 3" over stock, and I don't notice a problem. In fact, I'll probably cut a 1/2" off it so that I can see over it a little better when upright. Now, I have to sit at "attention" to do so.

 

Gear noise. Fer cryin' out loud, it's an effing machine! HD used straight-cut gears in first and fifth, primarily for efficiency, I'm led to believe. Straight-cut gears are noisier than helical; I just regard it as the sound of efficiency.

 

Heat - haven't got enough miles to notice, yet, but it was 104 here yesterday when I did the first 20 miles after I unloaded it after hauling it back from Seattle. (I didn't want to get caught in S&G traffic or ride it up the pass while breaking it in, so I took the easy way out.) I could feel some heat, but it wasn't bad.

 

However, there is a great set of articles at nightrider.com on dealing with the problem. They've discovered that the closed-loop FI has a narrow-band O2 sensor that is set to a 14.7 A/F ratio unless things start to overheat - then, if you're idling, it drops the idle from 1050 to 950 and enrichens to 12/1 until RPM passes 1250 again. At that point, it's back to 14.7/1 no matter what.

 

That little unannounced quirk has apparently caused some cylinder scoring in the 110" engine, and perhaps in the two smaller ones as well. Slow riders (cops and Shriners) see the RPM drop and think it's going to stall, so they blip the throttle. The mixture leans out again at the RPM bump and the engine stays hot, cooking the oil with predictable results.

 

I've also heard that they have a flash for the chip (you have to ask about it) that cuts out one cylinder then the other alternately at idle to cool things down. Supposedly, though, it degrades normal running in some fashion I haven't heard about.

 

So, to make a long story short, nightrider has developed a wide-band sensor that allows richer mixtures, down to 10/1, although that's not within the functioning range, apparently. Go here to read about it: http://www.nightrider.com/biketech/

 

Pilgrim

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Paul Mihalka
For the marginally less fat of wallet, Performance Machine offers all the brake your HD can stand. Problem is, sticky rubber to take advantage of all that good braking is not available. Not sure I would like to lock the front on a dresser and try to recover. The rear should be less of a problem but, until you have rubber that grips the road much better than the tires fitted to most HD's better brakes may well be a two edged sword.
I think Metzeler makes the ME880 in all the current Harley tire sizes. Must be a world of difference compared to the stone age Dunlops they come with from the factory.
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Thanks for the update. I have heard that the later bikes are cooler with rich bump up at idle. (2007's)
Actually, it's just a firmware update that was incorporated beginning with 11/06 production bikes and made available (at no cost) to all other '07s. It did help with the surging problem I was having on my '07 FXDL but I couldn't honestly tell a difference with regards to the heat. (Of course in stop and go traffic in 90 degree weather, there's no way you're going to significantly reduce radiant engine heat by simply richening up the mixture.)
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Gear noise. Fer cryin' out loud, it's an effing machine! HD used straight-cut gears in first and fifth, primarily for efficiency, I'm led to believe. Straight-cut gears are noisier than helical; I just regard it as the sound of efficiency.

Just to clarify... HD went with straight cut 1st and 5th gears because those are the two gears that take the most torque punishment (engaging from a standing stop, and rolling on to pass after downshifting from 6th). However, the straight cut design is not related to the infamous "rocks in a can" noise that is plaguing so many of the '07 models. I've seen several different theories - ranging from the design of the compensator to problems with the primary drive. What I have not seen is HD stepping up and offering either a clear explanation or a willingness to fix the problem (other than suggesting to use heavier gear oil). I hate to sound like broken record, but my '07 Dyna's tranny was quiet as a mouse in any gear - but my '07 Road Glide had a terrible clatter in 5th. There is definitely a problem and if count yourself blessed if your '07 has the quiet tranny. wink.gif
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I ride a Road Glide. I love it. I look over the windshield. In-fact that is the recommended height.

 

Some buffeting but not as much as on my R1100R.

 

IMO all the technical discussion/facts/opinions previously mentions are probably correct, but fact remains. If you like the H-D the details dont really matter.

 

the Glide is a very comfortable long distance riding platform. If you have a passenger he/she will be very comfortable. And, it is not just for long trips. Mine handles very well around town and provides an enjoyable experience every time.

 

I do not know about national levels of H-D inventory. I can tell you that our local dealer is sold out of Glides and just about everything else, and wishes he had more. Resale on your H-D is far greater percentage wise than any other brand, including BMW.

 

We have a private, invitation only viewing of the '08s set for next Tuesday. I expect many will be sold that evening.

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I ride a Road Glide. I love it. I look over the windshield. In-fact that is the recommended height.

 

Some buffeting but not as much as on my R1100R.

 

IMO all the technical discussion/facts/opinions previously mentions are probably correct, but fact remains. If you like the H-D the details dont really matter.

 

the Glide is a very comfortable long distance riding platform. If you have a passenger he/she will be very comfortable. And, it is not just for long trips. Mine handles very well around town and provides an enjoyable experience every time.

 

I do not know about national levels of H-D inventory. I can tell you that our local dealer is sold out of Glides and just about everything else, and wishes he had more. Resale on your H-D is far greater percentage wise than any other brand, including BMW.

 

We have a private, invitation only viewing of the '08s set for next Tuesday. I expect many will be sold that evening.

 

I went in today and rode the 07 RG. It was in the 80's this morning so the heat issue from the engine seemed to not be a big deal for me. I have to say that I really enjoyed it except for the windscreen causing quite a bit of buffeting on my full face helmet. I actually liked the bike better than I thought I would. The performance is much better than the previous RG's I've ridden. I came back to the dealer and they put on the 3" higher screen. The buffeting and noise was pretty good but the optical clarity is pretty lousy. I think clearview seems to be a good alternative. I think 2" is better for me but HD doesn't make it. Overall esp when you consider resale it's quite a bit of bike for the money.

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I came back to the dealer and they put on the 3" higher screen. The buffeting and noise was pretty good but the optical clarity is pretty lousy. I think clearview seems to be a good alternative. I think 2" is better for me but HD doesn't make it. Overall esp when you consider resale it's quite a bit of bike for the money.

 

Optical distortion is a nuisance, the one factor I will say I honestly don't like on mine. And I don't understand why it need be there; the windshield on my 23-year old FXRT is completely neutral.

 

Screen height: buy the 3" screen and cut it to the height you want. Mask it carefully and you can do it. Or a lot of glass shops can.

 

As to the comments on brakes that come up so often about Harleys. Riders of Japanese and Euro-cycles often make the mistake of ignoring the rear brake. On a Harley, due to sheer tonnage and wheelbase, that is a major source of braking performance, so they are giving up quite a bit of stop by keeping their right foot inactive. Certainly, they'll never be up to BMW level, but then, BMW is not up to Ducati level, either. And so on.

 

Pilgrim

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The optical distortion on mine was so bad, I ordered a replacement from Clearview the same week. The Clearview lives up to it's name--no distortions.

 

A note to anyone thinking of ordering a Clearview. They seem to slant back more than the stock shields so if you order a replacement the same measurement as the stock, you get a lower shield. I ordered a size which was the same center line measurement as my stock (16 i/2") but when I mounted it the sight line dropped about 2". Probably should have paid more attention to what they were telling me when ordering. The low shield is great for general riding but buffets over 60. Eventually may order a taller size but for now the laminar lip solves the problem.

 

I have seen posts that claim the Clearview has a top re curve (like the Cee Bailly BMW shields) but mine does not and I can't find anything on the Clearview website to support that claim. After close examination, I believe there is a very slight backward curvature near the base of the windshield which accounts for lowering of the sight line. In theory, this should also bring the edge of the windshield back closer to the rider's helmet and reduce buffeting. In my case, it didn't work as I wound up with a shorter shield.

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The optical distortion on mine was so bad, I ordered a replacement from Clearview the same week. The Clearview lives up to it's name--no distortions.

 

A note to anyone thinking of ordering a Clearview. They seem to slant back more than the stock shields so if you order a replacement the same measurement as the stock, you get a lower shield. I ordered a size which was the same center line measurement as my stock (16 i/2") but when I mounted it the sight line dropped about 2". Probably should have paid more attention to what they were telling me when ordering. The low shield is great for general riding but buffets over 60. Eventually may order a taller size but for now the laminar lip solves the problem.

 

I have seen posts that claim the Clearview has a top re curve (like the Cee Bailly BMW shields) but mine does not and I can't find anything on the Clearview website to support that claim. After close examination, I believe there is a very slight backward curvature near the base of the windshield which accounts for lowering of the sight line. In theory, this should also bring the edge of the windshield back closer to the rider's helmet and reduce buffeting. In my case, it didn't work as I wound up with a shorter shield.

When I rode the bike yesterday with the 3" higher shield it seemed about right but the optical issues. Is your shield 2" wider than the stock shield? I would think that would help with the wind issues.

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Just a side note... The '08 baggers will have Brembo ABS available as an option. I found a cached '08 ad here.

 

Is this for real?

If so I'd be interested in reading more!

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Just a side note... The '08 baggers will have Brembo ABS available as an option. I found a cached '08 ad here.

 

Is this for real?

If so I'd be interested in reading more!

yes - for real. The HD dealer show is being held as we speak in Nashville. The HD website should go live with the '08 info anytime now - although I've heard it could be as late as Tuesday morning.

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With Regard to the issue/talk about optical...

 

What optical problem are we having? I have been on H-D since 1989 models and have never noticed. But I must also say that I have never had a H-D with a windshield I was supposed to look through.

 

The idea is that you look over the shield not through it.

 

As for cutting a shield... I have done this many times to achieve the proper height. PM me and I will tall you how to do this, and trust me... it can be done so that no one can tell it was a DIY job. It is easy.

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With Regard to the issue/talk about optical...

 

What optical problem are we having? I have been on H-D since 1989 models and have never noticed. But I must also say that I have never had a H-D with a windshield I was supposed to look through.

 

The idea is that you look over the shield not through it.

 

As for cutting a shield... I have done this many times to achieve the proper height. PM me and I will tall you how to do this, and trust me... it can be done so that no one can tell it was a DIY job. It is easy.

 

HD Shield on the Roadglide is not just optically distorted on the top. The sides are optically distorted when you look through them. If you take the standard shield that does not have distortion it's not a problem. The problem is that anything above 60 causes terrible buffeting when I have my full face Arai helmet on. So the only answer (from HD) seems to be their 3+ taller shield.

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