Magic Elixir For My Harley

by derek on November 14, 2007 · 12 comments

Roughly two weeks ago, I was planning a short little motorcycle ride with a couple of my buddies and realized that my bike wasn’t running quite right.
For those that may not remember, I own a 2002 Harley Davidson Softail and I don’t exactly have the best track record when it comes to working on my motorcycle – or pretty much anything that involves tools.
Basically, the problem that I experienced with my bike was that the engine would sputter and die as soon as I would push in the enrichener. Since my bike does not have EFI (electronic fuel injection) I need to let it warmup properly but I had done that. Something wasn’t right but I wasn’t sure what to do.
I turned to a few online forums for help and also dropped an email to Liz from Rippin Kitten, as I knew she has experience working on her own bike. (Liz – I tried to reply to your email a few times but it bounced back to me.)
The feedback was that the problem sounded like the fuel in the tank may be bad and possibly caused the carb to clog up. The suggestions included trying some Marvel Mystery Oil, installing new spark plugs, testing for a vacuum leak, and an overall tuneup.
Naturally I thought I would start with the easiest remedy, as anything involving the need to install HD parts is bound to be an adventure.
Today I finally had the time to stop off at the auto parts store and pick up a bottle of the Marvel Mystery Oil, as well as a fresh tank of premium fuel before heading back home. Once I was home, I determined the appropriate amount of the Mystery Oil to add to my tank and fired up the bike to head out for a quick ride.
Back home after an extremely windy ride, I pulled into the garage and kept the bike running to see if pushing the enrichener all the way in would still cause the engine to die. Gradually I pushed the enrichener in and then waited to see if it would keep running. A little further and wait some more. With the enrichener all the way in the bike was still running.
Marvel Mystery Oil is a magic elixir!
One tank of premium fuel mixed with the magic elixir and my Harley seems to be running just fine again. I’ll have to give it another test ride to make sure it wasn’t just a fluke but things are looking promising.
In the meantime, I will be searching for some discount Harley parts as I will likely still need to change the spark plugs after running the bike with the enrichener out a little. Not to mention winter is nearly upon us and I still have my wishlist of mods that I have yet to address.
Any mechanics in the area looking for an apprentice? 😉

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{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

Home Recording Studio November 15, 2007 at 8:35 am

Wow, a Harley yet. I am a bit past the biking age but still miss the thrill of biking. No, I am not looking for an apprentice but I am sure that you will find a taker in your neighborhood. All the best.


Dave November 15, 2007 at 11:34 am

Very common issue I think with a carborated fuel system. Learned that one dirt bikes, you’ll find that removing and cleaning out the carbs can make the bike run so much better….so I wouldn’t be surprised if the same thing happened to your Harley. One of these days though you may want to get the carbs cleaned, unless that elixer really did wonders 🙂


Josh Spaulding November 15, 2007 at 2:16 pm

For a second I was wondering when you were going to get into the marketing lesson 🙂 I just noticed the subtitle though. That’s a very unique mixture of topics.
Glad you got your bike running well once again.


derek November 15, 2007 at 2:55 pm

@HRS :: I’m hoping to never be too old for biking as I love to get out and ride. Are you (or were you) a mechanic?
@Dave :: Remove the carb? By myself?! Surely you jest, lol. I would like to be comfortable doing something like that but my fear is tearing into things, not knowing what I am doing and then sitting there with a pile of parts in my garage.
@Josh :: Lol, I do venture off from time to time. 🙂 Thanks for the comment!


Dave November 16, 2007 at 11:58 am

Lol, I meant take it a shop or Harley dealer and have them do it. I would assume it’s a part of a tune up sort of thing.


Liz (rippin-kitten) November 16, 2007 at 1:06 pm

Derek-glad to hear that worked for you! Gotta love the simple solutions!


derek November 20, 2007 at 12:23 am

@Dave :: Lol, I am planning to do that before riding season kicks into gear next spring.
@Liz :: The simple solutions are always nice and after a little riding this weekend it looks like this has helped get me past the problem I was having, at least for the time being. Thanks!


David June 14, 2008 at 12:35 am

Wow… Harley is my dream. Glad you found simple solution, cause in your place I’d change everything from spark plugs to tires 🙂 I just love bikes.
Davids last blog post..Motorcycles News – Yamaha FJR 1300 AS


Xenon Bulbs July 12, 2008 at 10:04 am

My buddy is experiencing the same exact problem and has been looking to get it fixed. This is an awesome and simple solution to a very costly problem. About how much oil do you need to use? Is it worth using the oil opposed getting the parts replaced?


Jack@Motorcycle Paint Schemes February 10, 2009 at 2:53 pm

Glad you got it settled easily. I had a not very similar problem with my Yamaha and had to spend a bomb on overall servicing!


Dan @ Magic Jack January 7, 2011 at 2:43 pm

It’s better than a ducati. Don’t ask me how much I spend servicing mine…


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