Last Road King w/o electronics

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OneHandDuo
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Last Road King w/o electronics

#1

Post by OneHandDuo »

Hi all,
I usually ride a DuoGlide, but for a futur project, the following question came up:
Which year is the last Road King without any electronics? Electric starter is a must, but I do not want to have the all or nothing of some electronic component dying in the road and then nothing goes anymore.
As long as it is electric, I can (sort of) understand it, and maybe fix it. If an electronic circuit says no, thats it. End of story.

I could maybe live with an electronic ignition, but beyond that, it really gives me the heebeejeeebies.
Thank you.
RooDog
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Re: Last Road King w/o electronics

#2

Post by RooDog »

Do you have a car or truck? Do they still have points & condenser ignitions?
This is the 21st century. Electronic ignitions are safe and proven.
I would sweat the electric starter causing a problem long before an ignition issue were to present itself.
Just my 2d.....
....RooDog....
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Re: Last Road King w/o electronics

#3

Post by droptopford »

Yeah, there's no way really to answer your question. Electrics vs Electronics? I don't know the exact date of change for all the little things. I think the speedometers went from mechanical to electric in '95 or so. Is that too much electronic for you? Electric turn signals have been around longer than I have. Even though they work fine, I still use hand signals out of habit.

My '98 Road King (my latest model bike is eligible for antique plates here in Ohio!) has electric fuel injection... no carb. I think '98 was the first year for that but... carbureted models were still an option. No problems with that system yet except for Crank Position Sensor going out. And yeah, when that little unit craps out, you're done for the day.

On one hand, that was an electronic failure and that sucks. On the other hand, if you push the right buttons for in the specified order in the specified amount of time, a code shows up on the speedometer telling you exactly what broke. Easy fix. You take the bad with the good I guess.
OneHandDuo
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Re: Last Road King w/o electronics

#4

Post by OneHandDuo »

RooDog wrote: Sat Aug 06, 2022 3:45 pm Do you have a car or truck? Do they still have points & condenser ignitions?
This is the 21st century. Electronic ignitions are safe and proven.
I would sweat the electric starter causing a problem long before an ignition issue were to present itself.
Just my 2d.....
....RooDog....
Yes, RooDog, I have a modern car and an old one. As said, an electric ignition is ok, but when it comes to CPUs and all kind of electronic little helpers, things get complicated. With electronics, there is no roadside fix, only a flatbed. And to be honest, thay scares me. I had much less problems with older bikes and cars than with modrrn ones. Ah, don t worry, I ll find that elusive model that I consider "pre-electronic"....
Mongrel505558
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Re: Last Road King w/o electronics

#5

Post by Mongrel505558 »

If you don't mind some planning and some work, any bike can be made "non-electronic" to the extent you're willing to go. The Kiehin CV carb is a common replacement for fuel injection. The turn signal module can be replaced with a flasher unit since in the end bulbs are bulbs. A self-contained good electronic ignition and a carb should allow you to ditch the ECM. You will probably need to basically completely re-wire the bike, but with much simpler wiring. No VOES, TSM, ECM, etc. Replace the vacuum petcock with a Pingel replacement made just for that purpose. Get an Evo, because the Twinkies have crank-triggered ignition.
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Re: Last Road King w/o electronics

#6

Post by RooDog »

And, an Evo can easily be upgrade to however many non-electronic cubic inches you desire.
But again: The electric start system can be the sore point that could leave you in a humming situation, which I well know from experience....
....RooDog....
Last edited by RooDog on Mon Aug 08, 2022 12:49 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Last Road King w/o electronics

#7

Post by 59Panman »

:mrgreen: Are you worried about an EMP?
OneHandDuo
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Re: Last Road King w/o electronics

#8

Post by OneHandDuo »

With electronics, there is no roadside fix, only a flatbed. And to be honest, thay scares me. I had much less problems with older bikes and cars than with modrrn ones.
Thanks for all your ideas and advice...


Hahaaa, guys, you will not believe it. Just after writing the above, I broke down in Northern Italy with my car, a full non-electronic old offroad car ( ok, it has a radio, but thats it), with my wife and my three kids and a ton of luggage.
Full program: phoning around for hours in a language I dont really speak, night falling, car on a flatbed, change of hotels, probably change of holiday plan.
Everybody (including the wife) having fun, we are handlinb it as an adventure on the roadside.
My hope is still that only the clutch activator cable from the cluth pedal to the hydraulic whatever just slipped through, and it is nothing worse than that. We will know this morning. But I have an jnterest to get a rental car today if ours is not fixed, because tomorrow it should be Venice on the program, and the girls will never forgive me if that does not work out.

In the light of all that, a 2022 RoadKing with an "all bells and whistles" roadside support contract seems like a real option.
Then again, knowing myself, as soon as the family and me are rolling again, I ll swear the "old iron, bare necessities" approach again....

To be continued...
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Re: Last Road King w/o electronics

#9

Post by Andygears »

The electronics you need are: a cell phone, a credit card, and a AAA membership, at least in the USA. Italy? I dunno.

Andygears
RooDog
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Re: Last Road King w/o electronics

#10

Post by RooDog »

All machinery is breakable. It is unavoidable. All you can do is the best you can, and be prepared mentally for that eventuality.....
I don't sweat it, I've always made it home, somehow, otherwise I wouldn't be here, now, typing this BS....
....RooDog....
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Re: Last Road King w/o electronics

#11

Post by droptopford »

RooDog wrote: Tue Aug 09, 2022 1:27 pm ...I've always made it home, somehow, otherwise I wouldn't be here...
....RooDog....
My a-hole Goldwing riding younger brother is fond of repeating this little quote:
"Half of all Harleys are still on the road today. The other half made it home."
Yeah, he's an a-hole but I still love him.
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Re: Last Road King w/o electronics

#12

Post by Mongrel505558 »

droptopford wrote: Tue Aug 09, 2022 2:32 pm
RooDog wrote: Tue Aug 09, 2022 1:27 pm ...I've always made it home, somehow, otherwise I wouldn't be here...
....RooDog....
My a-hole Goldwing riding younger brother is fond of repeating this little quote:
"Half of all Harleys are still on the road today. The other half made it home."
Yeah, he's an a-hole but I still love him.
That's actually pretty funny.
neilw
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Re: Last Road King w/o electronics

#13

Post by neilw »

My 1995 RK has electronic speedo, and Keihn carb. Don't know more than that cause I never started it ,ever. It's still in my living room since new.
My 1991 Springer has the manual speedo but voes, and computer . I have another coil to go with my points and condensor in case I get stranded .As for the electric start ,the best I could do was drill out the selenoid cover and put a plunger in it to manualy activate the electric start.. you can do that ( sorta ) by running a live wire to the green one coming from the selenoid.
RooDog
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Re: Last Road King w/o electronics

#14

Post by RooDog »

A Harley, or any other 'cickle, for that matter, can be stranded for many reasons other than an ignition failure. Are you prepped & ready for them all?
Flat tire? Busted rear belt, now that one you ain't gonna fix by the side of the road, or chain, comes to mind. And yous guys that pull a trailer, how about road draft from a big rig jack knifing you, or maybe just getting run over by some cager texting. In reality electronics are at the bottom of my list of things to be ware of....
And pintos & condenser, really? This is the 21st century, what do you run in your trucks and cars?
BTW: I have a 1911 Colt, made in 1918, and it works just fine, so I'm not against old stuff....
....RooDog....
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Re: Last Road King w/o electronics

#15

Post by panhead_kicker »

neilw wrote: Sat Oct 15, 2022 9:21 pm My 1995 RK has electronic speedo, and Keihn carb. Don't know more than that cause I never started it ,ever. It's still in my living room since new.
...
It'll have its 30th birthday pretty soon.
Wish I could have found a brand new 55 FL back in 85 :D
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