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Strange situation

 
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Old 05-28-2019, 04:47 PM
old cat
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Default Strange situation

I have a 2014 Sportster Low rider 883. It has the 3 gallon gas tank so I have to fuel up about every 125 miles or so. Recently on a short ride the low fuel light came on very briefly. So I headed for a nearby gas station and the engine ran out of fuel as I was coasting up to the pumps. After fueling up with 91 octane non ethanol gas I note it only took about 1 gallon to completely fill it up. Something is amiss but not sure what. It should not have run out of fuel. Does something need to be reset? It scares me now to go anywhere out of town. Anywhere else than close to town in these parts will get you walking for a very long ways. I know how to access the trouble codes but I don't see anything regarding the fuel system. Any thoughts?
 
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Old 05-28-2019, 05:00 PM
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I doubt it actually ran out of gas, more likely lost electrical contact somewhere, I would start with electrical connections, positive and negative at the battery plus ground lug on top of the transmission, also check the fuse box for possible corrosion on fuses or relays.
Have you done anything lately like key relocate, tank lift, changed handle bars or grips or anything else involving the electrical system?
 
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Old 05-28-2019, 05:13 PM
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Originally Posted by HOTLAP View Post
I doubt it actually ran out of gas, more likely lost electrical contact somewhere, I would start with electrical connections, positive and negative at the battery plus ground lug on top of the transmission, also check the fuse box for possible corrosion on fuses or relays.
Have you done anything lately like key relocate, tank lift, changed handle bars or grips or anything else involving the electrical system?

I'm quite sure it ran out of fuel. Missed a few beats, then firing only on one cylinder a couple times and then dead. However , I will check the items you mention. It might be noteworthy to mention that although this bike is a 2014, it has never seen rain, always garaged and just turned 2000 miles since new. In fact, you can't tell the bike from new in appearance. I have not done any work recently on anything because it hasn't needed it.
 
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Old 05-28-2019, 05:34 PM
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I didn't mean it didn't run out of fuel rather it stopped getting fuel to the cylinder in the proper quantity and at the right time, the low fuel light flashing momentarily then possible lack of fuel pressure to the injectors indicate more of an electrical issue than actual fuel starvation to me. I would also have a close look at the electrical connection at the bottom of the tank where the fuel pump is located, any bad connection there could trigger the low fuel light and possibly shut down the fuel pump.
Unfortunately sometimes with intermittent things you have to keep using it till it does it again, can you remember if you heard the fuel pump running when it quit? if the pump was running continuously I would say maybe a blockage in the fuel pump or filter screen, if it wasn't running I would suspect an electrical issue.
If your 14 is the same as my 07 there are two black relays in the fuse box, they are exactly the same and one controls the fuel pump and one is a system relay, they are cheap and if I were you I would buy an extra and if and when this happens again I would try the spare in each hole and see if that helps, those relays have been known to quit working or work intermittently.
 

Last edited by HOTLAP; 05-28-2019 at 05:35 PM.
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Old 05-29-2019, 11:49 AM
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3 gallons minus 1 gallon= 2 gallons remaining in tank.But,you're quite sure you ran out of gas???
 
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Old 05-29-2019, 01:24 PM
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There's a difference between running out of fuel, and starving for fuel. If you put 1 gallon in a 3 gallon tank, you didn't run "out of fuel."

Listen to what Hotlap is saying and perform due diligence in chasing down the electrical issue.


P.S. This is another reason I love gravity and a carb.
 

Last edited by TStephen; 05-29-2019 at 01:25 PM.
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Old 05-29-2019, 01:51 PM
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It simply had all the appearance of running out of gas but obviously it wasn't out of gas. I think these newer bikes have way more electronics on them than they really need I wish I could turn the clock back to 1964 when I traveled all over the US on my XLCH Sportster,. Never a problem , not even a dead battery would stop it because it used a magneto for ignition. I am going carefully over all the suggestions given so far. So far ...nothing.
 
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Old 05-29-2019, 02:25 PM
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Well, I may be able to claim success finally. A few weeks ago I remember installing a new battery. That's the only thing this bike ever needed. It turns out that the battery post bolts that came with the new battery were too long and bottomed out in the connector before the negative post was ever tight . The post was loose as a goose. I had to retrieve the original battery post bolts which are about 2 mm shorter. It's plenty tight now. Hopefully this was the problem. Next ride and I'll find out. Many thanks to HOTLAP and his analogy I think was spot on. When you reach 85 I think the brain goes haywire to some degree :-) Been riding these critters since 1947...hard to give up old habits you see.
 
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Old 05-29-2019, 04:03 PM
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Damn you got me by 10 years. You go dude.
 
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Old 05-29-2019, 07:13 PM
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Originally Posted by apache snow View Post
Damn you got me by 10 years. You go dude.
Nothing to be ashamed of. You got a long way to go yet. I've had a long career of racing. First in the 50's it was flat track with the KR750, Later on Triumph. Then motocross and cross country desert racing with Greeves first and then Husqvarna. In between times on the road it was continuous travel on a Goldwing, later on the Goldwing Motor Trike. My wife passed 5 years ago so I didn't feel like travelling alone. Then went to a couple other bikes and finally this Sportster .
 

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