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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Anybody have any opinions on 3" open primaries? I'm looking at either the BDL Top Fuel or the Primo Brute IV. They are both 3", and they actually look a lot alike.

The thing is, I can get the BDL for around $500-600 cheaper than the Primo. Is there that big of a difference in quality?

Is the Primo worth that much more?

Thanks for any help....
 

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B.
I'm running a BDL with the oil filter mounted between the pulleys.
Its an easy install and pretty much bulletproof.
The Primo has a diaphragm clutch, as opposed to springs, gives a different feel.
Spend that extra $$ on the tranny.
G.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Well, I already bought a really nice Baker 5 spd. :)

So the clutch type is the main difference? How does your clutch feel...Is it fairly easy to pull?

Thanks G!
 

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Primo.

Buy the BDL, and you'll find out where you saved the $500.

Better still, try and get BDL's tech support guys on the phone before you order. If you just happen to get lucky, they'll proceed to tell you if it isn't an install on an OEM Harley, you're pretty much on your own, because it's not thier product that's goofy, it's your installation of it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the input, Rich.

So you're saying that the BDL is not as easy to install? Or that the quality is nowhere near that of the Primo?

I get the tech support thing...but I'm one of those guys that never uses tech support unless I've tried everything else I can think of first (i.e....I'm hard-headed). But it would be nice to have some back-up if I need it.

By the way, this is attaching to a 96" S&S and Baker 5spd (softail) in a rigid frame with 1" transmission offset.
 

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I run the Primo 3 inch with the diaphram clutch. I freakin' love it! Its set up with a 4 speed kicker and a 102 C.I evo motor (yes I said Evo!) in a rigid frame
 

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Why are you running a three incher? Is it a super big inch motor or a drag bike? You'll save dough if you just run a skinny belt instead of the 3 incher.

For what its worth, I have a BDL 1 1/2" drive and I haven't had a single problem. When I build my shovelhead though, I'm going to use a primo setup, since people I respect keep saying that BDL's are shit compared to the primo in terms of quality, tech support, etc.
 

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ordered a BDL for a friend a while back, he ran it for less than a year and the front pulley's splines just vaporized

did manage to get them on the phone

they basically said TS and that when they were busy selling the kit...... I didn't actually inform them I needed all the bits to actually install it on an operating motorcycle and therefore did not get some shim washer which meant the pulley had been run loose the whole time

I have my doubts but I didn't install it

I suppose when it was ordered, they assumed I was going to frame it since I didn't see any indications or hear anything else was required with the kit

yeah..... told the the year of the bike and stuff

seems the front pulley on this one had it's splines machined into the aluminum..... instead of a steel insert which some belts seem to have cast in place

wasn't impressed

1 1/2 wide belt
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I'm running a 3" belt because this bike would look funny with a skinnier belt...trust me on that one. Personally I prefer the skinny belt on most bikes...just not on this particular one.

The Primo is sounding better and better...
 

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i did a bdl 3" kit a few months ago. i;ve got a few hundred miles on it and it seems fine. i can tell you the installation instructions are approximately a before and after shot! but they did give handy advice on how to attach those weird looking moon disc wanna-be's onto the pulleys. i didn't feel like digging them out of the trash to do that step. whatever you choose - loctite (RED) the 1/4" bolts from the front pulley to the insert for the crank splines. they tend to shake loose pretty quickly.

i'm no mechanic but i play one on tv...
Brandon
 

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PRIMO!
PRIMO!
PRIMO!
in this case you really do get what you pay for; especially if you are running a foot clutch. on the belt size, if you are running a big motor run the 3" & maybe with a motor plate, other wise 2 should be fine.
 

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I've run a Primo with a Rivera Pro Clutch and BDLs. They always work great, I love 'em both. I like the look of a BDL better though, it's got more of a blower drive look. I don't have any experience with the electric start versions of either one though...
 

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I guess I don't know what the fuck I'm talking about!
I will say this...I was going for a skinny Primo set-up and got talked in to the BDL, and saved a few bucks.
I'm running an internal clutch and the "pull" (actually, "twist") is almost too easy.
I do like the looks better, and have had no problems at about 1500 miles so far.
But, I'm not brand-loyal.
My current build has a drivetrain consisting of a 80" shovel mated to an Exile motor plate/ Primo narrow belt /Baker 6 speed.
G.
 

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i am currently running a BDL 3" on my current ride. it works, a few slight problems with it (clutch adjuster rod broke) but otherwise reliable.

on my current build, im going to go with a primo 1 1/2 i think. i dont need the extra inch and half.
 

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HackAsaw said:
ordered a BDL for a friend a while back, he ran it for less than a year and the front pulley's splines just vaporized
We've had that happen on at least 2 of our customers. In my opinion I would spend the extra $$$ and get the Primo, haven't had a problem yet except for the ring gear screws backing out and fuckin up the whole mess(use Red on them).
-Jesse
 

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gettingreasy said:
We've had that happen on at least 2 of our customers. In my opinion I would spend the extra $$$ and get the Primo, haven't had a problem yet except for the ring gear screws backing out and fuckin up the whole mess(use Red on them).
-Jesse
I'm just making my own for the next build........ done it before and it ain't nothing but a thing

got a primo running open on my funky Ironhead

it's digging the new cush drive rear wheel for sure

those belts sure to add some harshness to the driveline

I was just amazed when they explained to me how it was my fault for not ordering some 32 dollar shim I'll assume were not mentioned in the instructions either...... and it's not like I don't have a well equipped machine shop had something additional been required...... and again.... I kinda have my doubts but that and a quarter won't get you a shoeshine
 

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I've been running a skinny belt Primo with pro clutch. Works great. I have a one of them shims Primo sells. I made a template from the shim, can probably post it. I actually made one out of sheet metal because the one they sell is about .25, I need about .125.
 
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