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Discussion Starter #1
my shovelhead doesn't seem to want to make any oil pressure. last ride, which was a while ago, the idiot oil light came on and my pressure guage was reading really low if not 0. figured it was an electrical thing as my pressure guage had been on the fritz and i never got around to replacing it (aftermarket pos mounted in the tappet screen cover).

anyway, after sitting for a long while, i've finially got off my ass and started to look into things. without starting the motor, i've turned it over a bunch (with kicker and starter motor, but coil/plugs removed). i get bunches of oil out the breather line which i guess is to be expected since it sat so long. but i'm not getting flow out of the tappet screen plug hole (with the guage removed) or out the return line back to the tank.

i'm affraid that something major happened, such as the oil pump drive shaft has busted off in the cam cone or some shit like that. i'm not quite finished checking all the lines to make sure something like a clog in the feed line. but i thought i'd see if anyone has any suggestions or experiences that might help me here. i'd really like to not have to dig into the motor... again. its getting too nice outside and i just wanna ride.

thanks a million in advance. j
 

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Sounds like you sheared a woodruf key on the return side of the pump. You need to take the pump off and maybe the cam cover to expose the drive gear. If your not getting return back to the oil tank, the engine will fill with oil and wetsump or go out the breather. Start by taking the cover off the pump, take a look at the gears and kick the bike over, you should see the gears turn. You may need to put some pressure on the gears while you kick it (take the plugs out so you can kick it with your arm and hold the gears with your other hand) this is because even if the woodruff key is sheared, it still may turn due to friction. on a big twin pump, there are two sets of gears for a total of 4 gears. The return gears are the widest. this is so the engine will always have the capacity to pump more out than in. so you don't wet-sump. Once you get the oil pump off, make sure you don't push the drive shaft into the camchest too much or you'll lose the drive gear and woodruff in the cam chest. It is possible to replace the woodruff keys on the gears within the pump without taking the cam cover off. You'll need two gaskets, the little snapring, and two woodruff keys for a total of about $5. You need to be carefull that you don't over tourque the bolts holding the pump back on. It's something like 80 inlbs (from memory) which isn't much. In short, one of your woodruff keys has sheared, hopefully inside the pump, If it's your drive side inside the cam cover, they you need to take the cam cover, pushrods etc off to get to the drive gear woodruff and snapring. It's not a big deal to fix but it's still delecate work. One thing, if your oil is really low in the oil tank, then your feed side of the pump is probably OK. If not, it could be any of the 3 woodruff keys or two snaprings. Either way, the fix is basically the same.
 
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