Hillbilly Clover and Harley Hinkiness

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Today, I rolled up on this Clover:

Dude was moping along at 33-35 MPH on a road with a 55 MPH speed limit. I followed him – was stuck behind him – for a couple of miles. He made no effort to pull off onto the shoulder or into one of several parking lots he passed. Eventually, heย made a glacial right-hand turn (more like a casual drift) off the main road. He began to ride the brakes about 1/4 mile before the actual turn, then signaled about an eighth of a mile before the turn. As I passed him, I turned to look. It was Willie Nelson Clover!

Harley Update (and question, open season):

So, the latest trouble is the starter spins but won’t turn the engine. Starter and solenoid and breaker are all good. I took the pimary case cover off to view the other side and found a large brass washer at the bottom, just sitting there. I can manually (with my hand) extend the rod actuated by the solenoid that has the smaller gear that’s supposed to engage the larger gear on the clutch basket, to turn the engine. But it’s clearly not doing thatย as it should when the starter solenoid is engaged. I wish I had my camera to take some pics, but that will have to wait until my wife visits me next!

Any ideas?






  1. Comments from Liveleak posting of Harley Article

    A small price to pay to be able to dress like the Village People


    Give this man a +1 for me. Well done sir, well done.

    Ha! good one

    Pablo Picasso
    Harley’s don’t leak oil. They’re just marking their territory…

    I’ve owned two Harleys….bolts strip, handles like crap, leaks oil…all you’re paying for is the sound and name….besides it’s a Sporty…barely a Harley

    Never had a single problem with mine, 6 years old now and ridden most days. For long trips on Australian roads I’d rather be on my Harley than folding myself up on a sports bike. I’ve never understood the rage between bike brands. Pick what you like and enjoy. My main enemy is women in SUV’s

    During the AMF era Harleys were garbage.

    they still kinda are. Everyone who i knw that owns one, is dissapointed.

    real Harleys were made BEFORE 1975 and the AMF days..
    everything after that is shit

    Prior to WWII, Harley-Davidson’s were produced in Japan under license to the company Rikuo (Rikuo Internal Combustion Company) starting in 1929 under the name of Harley-Davidson and using the company’s tooling, and later under the name Rikuo. Production continued until 1958.

    I heard it on LL so it must be true. ๐Ÿ™‚
    Nice bit of info though.

    Easy to verify…https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harley-Davidson

    At least it looks disgusting.

    I feel your pain…I still have a 78 shovel FLH, I dual plugged it, Andrews gears, bored it, and when it ran….my dick was huge. HA HA But I digress, I’ve always owned go fast bikes and they always get you home.
    If I were to ever own a twin again, I think I’d go for a Ducati monster.
    I’m riding a GSXR right now….love it. Thanks for the great post and story.
    As always….dress for the slide, not the ride. Peace and good luck.

    +1 Ducati. Had a 900ss up till ’04 and my ST3 since ’04. Still love this bike!

    if harley made aeroplanes Would you fly one?

    you think they get it flying ? it just rolls over the road haha

    Now that would leave some chem trails!

    The Z900 is a beauty, my mate had a Harley 883 sport and was terrified by the lack of brakes on it.

    I have always liked the look of the Hardley Diditstart. But am a lazy beer drinking Australian and would take too much of my beer drinking time up to be working on it. So just drive my 4×4 with me boat behind and fish.

    The only good thing about Harley’s… they will give your girlfriend an orgasm between certain rpm ranges. Other than that, pieces of shit. My ride is an italian v-twin mistress which is far more fun ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Guzzi’s are cool, but I would rather have my sister in a whore house then my brother on a Honda.

    Cocaine, it’s a hell of a drug.

    We call them Hardly Dangerous

    Rather weak motors tbh …If I wanted that style I would go for a jap or british motorcycle as they have much better build quality and can actually shuftee along at a decent pace

    I wish I was rich, well learned about motorcycles and liked sci-fi novels like you… no seriously, you sound awesome, and your garage is awesome.

    It’s not even a nice looking bike, dump it. The motorcycle world is fucking amazing. There are so many incredible things you can spend your time, effort, and money building that I’m sure would be far more satisfying. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Mechanic’s cliche, “it leaks like a Harley”.
    It’s so poorly designed that even loctite can’t keep them from vibrating apart.
    The only draw to one would be if I was a dame, with that in mind, a Sybian isn’t that expensive.

    Q: What’s the difference between a Harley and a vacuum?
    A: The dirt bag rides on the inside of a vacuum.

    Thank you for this awesome video about a Legendary Bike … -_- , This is why i will stick with Japanese bike, They dont have a soul like many owner of Harley pretend ,but at least they start when you need it,Reminds me my Honda Cb400t 1981 with over 100000 miles on it ,never broke.Changing oil,filter,chain and tires …for me its bulletproof.

    They are called “Scrap metal from Milwaukee” for a reason…never understood that reputation as being ‘cool’ while HD stands for mainly two things – effin’ expensive and poorly built.

    Stick to the jap bike babies, they were made for you.

    Totally agree with you sir.

    :)…Great story! I listened to Harley riders in the 70’s after they went AMF…I chose Honda and while the 750F had it’s buggaboos ( shimming valves as routine maintenance) It was generally a beast…

    Interesting fact; Prior to WWII, Harley-Davidson’s were produced in Japan under license to the company Rikuo (Rikuo Internal Combustion Company) starting in 1929 under the name of Harley-Davidson and using the company’s tooling, and later under the name Rikuo. Production continued until 1958. ( More..

    Spot on with the comments.cannot understand why people lust after one.Still,each to their own,I suppose.Peachy Z,btw.

    Just a VW Beetle on two wheels. Noisey and useless

    What did you expect from a 1940’s design..

    exactly ! most harleys are based on old design but the newer ones tho look really badass. my neigbor has an all mat black harley with porsche parts (stock apparently) I’ve never seen anything like it before! straight out of batman movie

    The motor of Vrod was designed by Porsche …German know what their doing ,Jay Leno said that about the last Ford GT500 ,For the GT500 block, the application begins in Germany, with casting specialist Honsel

    lol SO true mate . I used to be a restorer of old iron , some of the design would make you scream in rage .
    And I could do a whole post on Joe Lucas , Prince of Darkness .

    The only acceptable Harley-Engine is the VRSC, starting in 2003.

    Because ot was designed by Porsche. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Japs didn’t take over. Harley is everywhere now days. Your problem was you bought an AMF skirtster. Never buy a skirty. Harley Davidson forever.

    Honda plaggie trumps harleys every time ๐Ÿ™‚

    We got fucked by @tormunkov….cunt just posted. Not a biker. Cunt.


    Nope, just bike curious.

    A representative example of Harley engineering.

    Thomas McAfee
    I don’t know what you said, but fucky you.

    Honey…..go iron my Harley shirt and I’ll put on my Harley sunglasses and Harley boots on so I can go out on Saturday and look like I’m a biker.

    I own a 79 Lowrider. It’s a bitch, but an average car from then would be, too.

    never liked them,too heavy,not fast,expensive to buy and maintain,terrible to manuever,overall not my idea of fun,never understood why people buy them anyway.It’s kind of tragic that with my old Monster 620cc i was able to trash a harley 1200cc that bike didn’t stand a chance at all.

    The problem with HD bikes in Italy is that they’re too freaking loud in small street neighbourhoods.

    Love that KH ๐Ÿ™‚

    Never forget my mate riding one out of a car park, not noticing the steel bar had been lowered across the entrance. All these year later I can still hear that “Whoof!” noise he made, then the crackle of that triple as it rode off without him…

    Life behind Bars…..wind in my face and salty bugs
    Lets ride!!!!!!

    Jap bike = lawnmower.

    I’d take a cafe racer any day before taking an 80s Harley.

    LOL, you’re the epitome of the bitchy ass’d know it alls today. cracks me the fuck up, how many techs i’ve hired and fired..

    fuck ups with a five gallon bucket of tools, yet they’ve solved every problem know to man.

    Is this an AMF Hog?

    AMF sold Harley in 1981.

    Voted for the effort you putted into that article.

    I’ll get that bike running in 5 minutes
    or less!
    Revoke man card or bring your bike to a mechanic
    you clearly don’t deserve the bike OR the garage

    – You have a big mouth, but you didn’t say anything.

    eh, whatever you say fella, eh

    – You criticized without any explanation, which means nothing, except to show your ignorance and bias.

    Indians are fine motorcycles, and they don’t break.

    yeah, I felt the same taking the transfer case out of my Landcruiser – 10mm clearance isn’t a lot to wrestle a 100kg lump of metal around in.. but it wouldn’t be as valuable if it was easy..

    Check out the funny negative comments from Harley fans who only name call and insult, without any explanation to support themselves. LOL! Total losers!

    Lmao. Dude ur funny

    A fucking AMF Harley.
    No Thank You.

    If you find one of those”die hard harley riders.” Stay away. Stupidity and lack of rational will follow.

    Word of wisdom ๐Ÿ™‚
    At least they change their own oil…

    completely crap bikes …the only thing douchier then a Harley is a Boss Hoss

    Liveleak link

  2. Eric,

    (Just throwing some darts, since I know very little about HD MCs.)

    Are there any fuses involved that are broken?

    How do the gears normally engage, when all is working properly? Is there a wire not connecting properly that should?

    Is there a video online (youtube, etc.) that can help with your situation?

    • Hi Mith,

      This bike has no fuses – just breakers! All electrical stuff checks out. The solenoid (new) activates when the starter button is depressed and it spins the starter. Problem is the starter does not engage (and turn over) the engine. I removed the case cover (primary drive) so as to take a lookee at the guts. I found a large loose brass washer sitting in the gear oil. And I can manually (by hand) pull the pinion with the small gear (this is the one engaged by the solenoid) out (toward me) and get it to mesh with the big gear on the clutch basket – but if I try to do this from the solenoid side (by pushing on the pinion assembly, as the solenoid plunger should do when it is activated by the starter button) it doesn’t seem to extend as it should. I am thinking there is something broken/out of whack with the pinion – and may pull the clutch basket to have a look.

      The loose washer bothers me…

      • It’s difficult to tell by words but it sounds like either the throw or location is off. A brass washer could easily be some sort of shim or spacer, perhaps a blindly inserted one that when a bolt was removed it fell out unseen. When reassembled without it now things are out of place. More thinking along those lines is any bolt holes without bolts? That is a bolt that has vibrated out? Again to the same effect allowing the spacer washer to fall out of position.

      • Brass washer sounds like a part of the starter drive. Sometimes there is one against the gear with another on the other end of the shaft held on by a clip with a spring between the two. It’s either a retainer or as Brent said, a shim or thrust washer between gears. Very unlikely to be an optional part for very long and may be causing a gall situation.


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