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  #1  
Old 13-08-2011, 11:05 AM
Allen Allen is offline
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Checking the oil level on 2003 1450 softail.

OK i have looked under the search but cant find info so bear with me on this...............( Memory going age i recon )

When i bought the bike some time back the salesman told me how to check the engine oil,,Warm,,Bike "on" side stand, engine let it tick over 10 seconds,Switch off pull dip stick out of oil tank oil should be on the mark..Some people have since told me Bike MUST be upright,Haynes manual (Yea i know they are crappy) said the same bike on side stand..Now i looked at an owners manual for my 2003 softail standard and it states with the bike upright dip the oil level ,,,,,,Whats correct dip oil on side stand or dip oil when bike is upright I am talking engine oil only in the oil tank.
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Old 13-08-2011, 12:03 PM
grbrown grbrown is offline
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Re: Checking the oil level on 2003 1450 softail.

There are more urban legends about this than......

Go by your owners manual!

Frankly I always check my bikes cold on their side stands. I have yet to see the benefit of the warming up routine. The amount of oil likely to magically appear by any other method is not enough to get excited about!
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Old 13-08-2011, 12:19 PM
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Urrell Urrell is offline
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Re: Checking the oil level on 2003 1450 softail.

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I have yet to see the benefit of the warming up routine.
If left standing for any length of time with a less than 100% effective check valve a good proportion of the oil in tank could find it's way into the sump giving a false reading on the stick. If more oil is added to "bring it up to level" when the engine is started and the scavenge pump returns the standing oil to the tank it would be overfilled and will probably blow it all over the place thru the breathers.
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Old 13-08-2011, 12:31 PM
grbrown grbrown is offline
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Thumbs up Re: Checking the oil level on 2003 1450 softail.

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Originally Posted by Urrell View Post
If left standing for any length of time with a less than 100% effective check valve a good proportion of the oil in tank could find it's way into the sump giving a false reading on the stick. If more oil is added to "bring it up to level" when the engine is started and the scavenge pump returns the standing oil to the tank it would be overfilled and will probably blow it all over the place thru the breathers.
That's a good point, but I have never suffered from that problem on any of my bikes. If oil level is below expectations, that warrants further investigation. In any event, if a significant amount of oil has found its way into the crankcase: 1. you will never kick start it; 2. the starter will have problems too!
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Old 13-08-2011, 01:53 PM
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Tony Cross Tony Cross is offline
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Re: Checking the oil level on 2003 1450 softail.

REF upright or sidestand. Normally upright. On very latest bikes there has been a move to measurement on the sidestand which is a safer arrangement. This also applies to some replacement dipsticks eg temp guage models on sportsters. Hence need to read handbook. To be on the safe side run the bike first. Good practice is to check the level after use before putting it away so avoiding any problems.
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Old 13-08-2011, 06:20 PM
88b 88b is offline
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Re: Checking the oil level on 2003 1450 softail.

I think 03 is upright at operating temp, I only fill them to 3/4 on the marks as some Harleys have a nasty habit of pumping oil out of the breathers if filled to the top. If your dipstick has a hinge type thing ( technical term there ) you check it on the side stand.
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Old 14-08-2011, 01:58 AM
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Fast Lane Fast Lane is offline
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Re: Checking the oil level on 2003 1450 softail.

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When i bought the bike some time back the salesman told me how to check the engine oil
Salesmen are not mechanics - they sell things, anything. 2003 - Take it for a ride until it's up to running temperature, pull up somewhere & shut the engine down (not on the sidestand). Pull out the dipstick, wipe it clean and push it back into the oil tank until it bottoms out. Pull it out again and adjust the level until it's up to the low level - you don't need any more in a Softail.
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Last edited by Fast Lane; 14-08-2011 at 02:00 AM.
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Old 14-08-2011, 11:18 AM
Allen Allen is offline
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Re: Checking the oil level on 2003 1450 softail.

Thanks Guys,,I think from now on i will put a reminder note on my garage wall,Check oil warm and bike "upright",Keep oil about half way up dipstick.( Probably explains when i first got the bike,I used to put the bike on side stand top up oil to top of dip stick mark,When i got back after rides i had very small amounts of oil deposits around air filter and on screen)
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