Best Harley Compensator Sprocket – Top Upgrade / Replacement

Harley bikes face a common problem – compensating sprockets. Most of their compensators buffer torque while you try to start the bike. The limitation with the vibrations is they can limit your comfort and riding experience. To ensure your Harley offers the best results, you need to invest in the best Harley compensator. The article seeks to provide more information on Harley compensators to make sure you choose the ideal one. Here you may check the shortlist first.

Best Overall – Twin Power or Evolution Industries

Runner Up – Belt Drives ‎CS-34A or HardDrive 241275

Best Budget – HardDrive 15-091 or HardDrive 15-061

Bestseller No. 1
CICMOD All Primary Drive Twin Cam Locking Tool in Transmissions & Chains for Harley Davidson Electra Glide/Road King/Softail
  • For all Big Twin and XL.
  • Use on all primaries between front primary chain and motor sprocket.
  • Easily inserted into the primary drive system and wedges in place to restrict movement without damaging the sprocket teeth.
  • Function: A must-have primary drive locking tool for most Harley owners. This is a good helper to lock primary drive in place while removing or installing primary drive components.
  • Package include: 1pcs Primary Drive Locking Tool.
Bestseller No. 2
PLSUSJHAO Motorcycle Primary Drive Locking Tools Transmissions & Chains Sprocket Lock Hub Nut For Harley Twin Cam Electra Glide Road King Softail
  • This wedge is used for between front sprocket and primary chain on bottom to torque nut
  • It is a good helper to lock primary drive in place while remove or install primary drive components.
  • It is Easy to inserte into the primary drive system and wedges in place to restrict movement without damaging the sprocket teeth.
  • Fit for most primary drives ( all Big Twin and XL )
  • Package include : 1x Primary Drive Locking Tool
Bestseller No. 4
Belt Drives CS-25A - Compensator Sprocket, 25T
  • Three-piece patented design with no spring
  • Weighs less than the stock sprocket
  • Made in the USA; U.S. Patent #6,234,909B1
Bestseller No. 5
HardDrive 191200 Compensator Eliminator Sprocket - 34T
  • Much quieter than stock diaphragm spring style compensator
  • Available in 32 and 34 tooth sprocket
  • Improves starting and starter life
Bestseller No. 6
HardDrive 191202 Compensator Eliminator Sprocket - 32T
  • Much quieter than stock diaphragm spring style compensator
  • Available in 32 and 34 tooth sprocket
  • Improves starting and starter life
Bestseller No. 7
Bikers Choice Compensating Sprocket and Cover Kit 241274
  • Compensating sprocket and cover kits
  • Kit include sprocket shaft extension, compensator sprocket, sliding cam, cover assembly and nut
  • Kit has 25 tooth sprocket
  • Kit must be spaced by installer.
Bestseller No. 8
Compensator Sprocket Kit 34 Tooth - Harley Twin Cam
  • Premium High Performance Compensator Kit engineered for increased travel.
  • New premium design will support the high torque output associated with high compression & large displacement engines.
  • Features improved oil passages and needle bearing thrust washer. Designed to outperform Original compensators.
Bestseller No. 9
Belt Drives Ltd Compensator Sprocket - 34T CS-34A
  • Three-piece patented design with no spring
  • Weighs less than the stock sprocket
  • Made in the USA; U.S. Patent #6,234,909B1
Bestseller No. 10
HardDrive 191205 Compensator Eliminator Sprocket - 34T
  • Much quieter than stock diaphragm spring style compensator
  • Available in 32 and 34 tooth sprocket
  • Improves starting and starter life

What is a Harley Compensator?

A compensator is a crucial part of your Harley bike. The sole purpose of a compensator is to smooth out vibration or torsional shake yielded by the crankshaft. It makes sure the vibration is not conveyed via a drivetrain for a smoother ride.

Once the compensator is faulty, vibration is released or produced by the crankshaft and ends up unrefined. As a result, vibration may travel via the drivetrain leading to the rider’s discomfort. Moreover, it may cause the component to wear off faster.

Working Science of a Motorcycle Compensator

A motorcycle compensator works when the sprocket dampens the torsional vibration yielded to confirm it never goes through the drivetrain. That’s why Harley bikes are so comfortable. One should remember the compensator’s purpose is to smoothen the rough pulses created by the engine under certain load situations. To make sure the vibration never passes via the drivetrain. 

Once it stores a certain amount of energy, it will discharge that after a power stroke. When the piece is working right, it gets rid of any issue that might come up. It also makes sure the bike always gets to start promptly.

Best Harley Compensator : V-Twin or Twin Cam, M8

Top Brands – Best Aftermarket Compensator for Harley

Twin Power

Being among the famous manufacturers of bike compensators, you can never go wrong with their products. The products offered by the brand offer a cover kit for the piece to make sure the compensator stays in good condition.

Hard Drive

If looking for a compensator sprocket that comes complete, this is the brand to go with. Such compensators come with sturdy construction to boost their durability. Other than adding to its durability, the sturdy construction also boosts the piece’s overall appearance.

Compatibility Issue

Most Harley compensators can go well with most Harley bikes. However, it’s good to check their fit specifications to make sure you buy the right one for your bike design. Remember that if the compensator fails to work well, it may never offer the expected comfort. Other aftermarket compensators can fit well into Harley bikes. All you need is to check well for better results. 

Compensator Replacement Cost – DIY & Professional

Are you thinking of replacing your faulty compensator, but you are unsure of the cost? Well, if planning to get a new one, expect to use about $400. If you have the skills to replace the piece on your own, you can successfully do so at home and save on expert charges.

Professional Replacement

For professional replacement, an average cost of a technician may range between $400 to $500 labor costs alone. Knowing how to replace it on your own is an added advantage since you will only incur the buying charges alone.

Why Should You Think of a Compensator Upgrade?

Let’s check some reasons why any biker would need to upgrade their bike’s compensator.

  • A faulty compensator is unsafe to ride on
  • A worn-out compensator ends up yielding a disturbing sound as you start the bike
  • Damaged compensators usually kick back whenever one tries to start the engine.
  • Faulty compensators lead to excess vibration, which leads to massive wear out of the bike’s vital parts.
  • Another reason why you need an upgrade is the comfort. Everyone wishes to ride comfortably no matter the distance.

Signs of a Bad Harley Compensator – Why Does It Go Bad?

Some of the signs that a compensator is failing include loud clunk when trying to start the bike. Another symptom is once you notice problems when shifting gears. However, the best way to see if the compensator is failing is by opening the primary cover to check. 

Compensators fail when the oil fails to get into the compensator consistently, leading to wear or failure. The piece has scoops that help in conveying the oil into the compensator. Compensators also become faulty once the spring pack gets weak. Two concentric chains glide against the compensator’s hub leading to faults. 

The spring pack lies behind the compensator’s sprocket hub. Once it becomes inefficient, damaged or worn out, Harley’s overall performance drops. It’s advisable to have regular checks on the piece to make sure it stays in good condition.

Lifespan of a Harley Compensator

Harley compensator lifespan depends on the bike’s model and the manufacturing year. On average, your bike’s compensator may last for about 40,000 miles. If you installed a solid compensator on the bike, always perform regular maintenance checks. In that case, the compensator may cover even over 100,000 miles before needing a replacement.

Replacement of a Harley Compensator – Step by Step

  • Get enough space – make sure you choose an area with enough space to accommodate your bike.
  • Allow the engine to cool off – Never try replacing the compensator immediately after turning off the bike’s engine.
  • Detaching the heel shifter – before doing the replacement, disassemble the bike by detaching the heel shifter and the footboard on the left.
  • Draining the oil – You must drain the oil in the primary drive for a better experience.
  • Remove the snap rind found on the clutch hub –This makes it easier to remove the compensator.
  • Detaching the compensator –Unscrew or detach the compensator from the bike as one unit. You can use screws to detach the piece.
  • Replacing the bike compensator-As soon as you detach the faulty unit, it’s now time to install. A new compensator kit will come with all crucial hardware during the installation process.
  • Final touches – after you install the compensator, perform some final tasks like applying red Loctite, installing a new gasket and finally assembling the main housing. 

Best Oil for Harley Compensator

Shell Rotella 15W-40 and the Amsoil 20W-50 are two famous and common oils for Harley compensators. Both oils deliver verified protection as they are excellent all-round lubricants. They fight any mechanical shear and heat to make sure the unit is safe. Both oils can resist viscosity breakdown six times better than most oils. As a rider, your bike will be protected from transition gear and compensator wear.

Concluding Remarks

Why should you keep on riding on a noisy compensator while there are ways to get your bike to start quietly? With the above information regarding the compensators, you can start riding with pride. All you need is to make sure you get the best compensator; install it well, and you are good to go.

Last update on 2022-05-12  / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

About the author

Writer @ Motorcycleall.

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