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Thread: O-Ring Chain for 1964 FLH

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Posts
    154

    Default O-Ring Chain for 1964 FLH

    This has probably bin covered here before but my search didn't come up with any hits.

    I'd like to upgrade to an O-Ring rear chain. The limited experience I have with these is that the one I tried to use on a 57 FLH long ago was too wide with the side plate rivets contacting parts of the bike (I don't remember which parts).

    I know the O-Ring chains are wider than non O -Ring ones but it seems the widths vary from manufacturer to manufacturer and also on varying chain models from the same manufacturer. In addition it seems the widths are not reported in the specification that I see.

    So - can anyone recommend an O-Ring chain that has run without contacting parts for a 1964 FLH?

    Thanks!

    Steve Slaminko

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    81

    Default

    Steve, I had some work done on my '64 fl last year. New chain, sprockets and trans work. The chain used was not an O ring and was supposed to be a good replacement for the original, diamond maybe. The shop that did the work told me that the master link was put to the inside of the chain due to clearance issues with the primary. I rode it for about 300 miles and one day I hit a bump and heard a loud bang. The chain had caught the fender and damaged it. Unfortunately the damaged section had to be cut from the original fender as it was too damaged to repair. This bike is a rider so I was not real upset as it is hard to see.
    This past winter I needed to do brakes front and rear. I had not loosened the large retaining nut for the stub axle housing on the rear. After re-assembly I checked wheel alignment and found it to be slightly off, enough to have caused the problem with the fender. I had no 8 foot fluorescent tubes so I used string lines to put it back in alignment. Now everything is fine but I would not recommend an o ring chain due to the issues I had with a "good replacement" chain. I am sure o ring chains are even wider.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Northern Colorado
    Posts
    837

    Default

    I think you'll have clearance problems with anything other a plain Diamond chain.
    VPH-D

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Posts
    144

    Default

    It occurs to me that if some enterprising person were to make sprockets a bit thinner, we could use 520 instead of 530 chain and clearance problems would be solved.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Princeville, IL
    Posts
    95

    Default

    I run an O ring chain on a 1965 FL and a 1975 FXE, I run the master link toward the wheel to avoid the pins contacting with the inner primary (which is a bit different from your 64) I have not had any problems over the last 30 years doing this other than it is a more difficult to break the master link if you want the chain off.
    John Underwood
    AMCA#14400
    Central Illinois

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Northern Colorado
    Posts
    837

    Default

    I forgot about the backwards master link, that trick has worked for me in the past.
    VPH-D

  7. #7

    Default

    My thinking about O-ring chains is the weight of them. That's a lot of iron to get moving and the stress on the main shaft/main drive gear has to be significantly increased over good old Diamond 530. Also who rides regularly on dirt roads these days?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Posts
    154

    Default

    Thanks for all the replies. I plan on staying with a conventional chain but I forwarded your comments and comments from the Panhead Facebook group to a friend who plans on running an O-Ring on his Pan. I'll update this thread once I hear how his experiment goes.

    Steve Slaminko

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