Lets face it: Most of us ride our motorcycles to the point where things wear down, come loose, or, worse, break down. Did you know there is a gauge that measures your final drive belt for stretch? How about checking the rear shift arm that attaches to the transmission shifter shaft? Did you know they could come loose from vibration and wallow out the arm, causing no shift conditions. Did you check to see that the bolts on the front fork are tight? How about the rear swingarm? Wheel bearings, brake pads, rotors, brake fluid level and condition, loose bars, horn, lights (especially brake light), tire pressure, and more. These are just the basics, folks, but sometimes they are often overlooked. There are many safety precautions that need to be checked, rechecked, and triple checked. We thought we would go over some of the basic maintenance items.
Changing the oil is probably one of the most common services done to your motorcycle, so we grabbed one of S&S’s Oil Change Kits and headed to Pops Hot Rod Garage in Oceanside, California, to pour the new lifeblood into a ’12 Harley-Davidson Street Glide. For this oil change we used S&S full synthetic 20w50 oil (# 310-0285) and filter (# 31-4104) Chrome or (# 31-4103) black for ’99–later Harley-Davidson Big Twin models. S&S claims that its Premium Synthetic engine oil reduces engine wear and lowers oil temperatures, providing consistent viscosity, and resisting thermal breakdown and oxidation at elevated temperatures. Available in cases of 12 one-quart bottles and in S&S oil change kits with four quarts of oil and a premium oil filter.