View Full Version : Low rpm hesitation problem

11-05-2004, 04:40 PM
I've finally decided that this is a problem that's not going to correct itself.

My '04 Wide Glide seems to run pretty poorly at low rpm's. I get a lot of hesitation in all gears at around 2500(?) rpm's. I don't have a tach, but I'm guessing that's about where it is.

I notice it the most in 3rd gear. There's a road near my house that runs right along the beach for about 6-7 miles and the speed limit is 30 mph. I usually do about 35 mph in 3rd gear along this stretch and my bike sputters and hesitates the entire time. I've noticed that it does it in other gears too, but this is when it's most pronounced.

As soon as I roll on the throttle a little it clears right up and runs smoothly. I'm not lugging the engine, it just seems to run like crap in this range.

My bike is fuel injected with a 95" BB Stage II kit ( with Stage I breather kit), SE 203 cams, Power Commander III usb, and V&H Big Radius pipes (did this with SE II slip-ons too).

My A/F ratio is pretty flat right around 13:1 in this range. I just had the bike Dynoed when I got the Power Commander tuned, but it's done this since I got it. This happens no matter whether the bike is cold or thoroughly warmed up.

I've only had the bike for a couple of months (got it new) and I've currently got about 1500 miles on it. It's my first Harley.

Is this a known problem? Any ideas what might be causing it? Any chance this will clear up after I get some more miles on it?

I posted this on another forum too, and I got an answer that makes sense to me, but I thought I'd check here for a second opinion.

Thanks for any help.

11-05-2004, 05:12 PM
Hi Snaps

Being this happens at a steady rpm then clears up on throttle I would suspect a couple things. Before that a look see at the plugs always tells the truth.

Check for a manifold vacuum leak. would be my first thought.

Also you may be getting a bad reading from a sensor.

I am assuming you checked your timing & advance curve status.

May I ask what was the suggestion from the others, it may jar my CRS intpo action


11-05-2004, 05:25 PM
May I ask what was the suggestion from the others, it may jar my CRS intpo action


Thanks Wide. I didn't want to influence any possible answers so I didn't post what was mentioned already. But basically I was told it might be a problem due to the 203 cam. That even though they're mild cams, they still have overlap and don't do well in low rpm area, that they're bucking on me. He called it 'riding the cam'. It was suggested that going to the old final drive ratio of 3.37:1 might help.

11-05-2004, 05:46 PM
Thats cool,

Yes that may be the issue as your aware of the tradeoffs with going to a bigger cam.

I believe wreckerman & speedman are using that cam & would be much better then me at answering this.

My gut feeling is that this cam with injection should be pretty darn smooth at 2500rpm.

Lets see what the dudes with the cams have to say.


11-05-2004, 06:32 PM
I run the 203's with the 95 inch kit and haven't had any problems once the DFO was installed. It does run a little ruffer at idle than stock but at 2500 she pulls hard and smooth. Thats where the 203's are supposed to work. I have 7000 miles on er so maybe your girl is just a little tight yet. Ride safe, Buck.

11-05-2004, 07:51 PM
With the 203 cam, 95", and the ac & exh setup that engine should pull hard at 2500. Sounds like an intake leak. I had that setup but with the stage II burn instead of the PCIII and it ran very strong no complaints.

11-05-2004, 07:54 PM
you might want to revist whatever map you are currently running. sounds like a fuel delivery issue. the 203's are really mild. performance cams with later intake closing and far lobe seperation/overlap will usually run worse at idle, then "kick in" as the rpm increses without having a single "flat spot"...


11-05-2004, 10:55 PM
i have been running the 203 cam on my 2002 rk and ,it pulls fine , i belive you are going to find one of two causes here , 1 gasket at the intake sucking air, or that maybe you need to cut back your fuel just a hair , you can play with the pcIII tuner a little with the 3 buttons and should be able to lean it out a bit keep reading your plugs for best results, also your motor is still a little tight they truely dont get running right tell between 3 and 4 thousan miles

11-05-2004, 11:59 PM
Thanks a lot guys. I appreciate all the input.

The problem only occurs at steady rpm's. If I'm accelerating through that range, it runs great. I only notice it if I'm riding at say a constant 35 mph in 3rd gear or a constant 45 mph in 4th. It's not that the engine's lugging, it just hesitates and sounds like crap. It will pull strong through all the gears and cruise just fine otherwise.

I'm hoping wreckerman nailed the problem and I just need to add a few more miles. I'm not usually that lucky though.

11-08-2004, 02:07 AM
Snaps; thought about yopur problem this weekend out ridin, so ran the bike down low and steady and had no problems. Ran er a lot at 1700 rpm in 3rd and 4th, smooth as silk and no hesitation when rollin on the thottle. Something I couldn't say befor I installed and tuned DFO. Also ran at 2500 rpm agian no problem. 35mph in 3rd on my bike is about 2300, again no problem. Like I said befor maybe your girl is still a bit too tight. Hope that's all it is. Ride safe, Buck.

11-08-2004, 04:15 PM
Thanks, Buck. I appreciate you checking it out.

I'm hoping that's what it is too. I rode about 130 miles yesterday and it seemed like it might be a little better. Could be wishful thinking though. I have a combo speedo/tach gauge on order that was supposed to be part of the original deal on my bike. So when that comes in I need to take it to the dealer anyway, since I already paid to have it installed. I figure if it's still acting this way I'll see what they say about it and go from there.