Harley Evolution Softail Oil Tank Removal

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  • Knowledge when you need it

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In this video we take a look at Harley Evolution Softail oil tank removal. There are a number of reasons why you may need to remove your oil tank. You may want to have your tank painted or powder coated. You may have a damaged tank that needs to be replaced. You may need better access to your starter motor. If you have had catastrophic engine failure, you will need to remove and flush your oil tank. If you have a Twin Cam model versus an Evolution model, make sure to watch our Twin Cam Harley oil tank removal video.

The Evolution Engine’s Oil Tank Has Four Oil Lines

These four lines are the feed line, return line, vent & drain. It is of upmost importance that these lines are reinstalled correctly. If necessary, take a photo, draw a diagram, or label the oil lines. Failure to reinstall these lines correctly can lead to engine failure. Before you start your Softail oil tank removal process, take a minute to tape off any areas that may rub, or make contact. Taking an extra couple of minutes doing this can help to avoid damage from a slip, or mishap; possibly saving you some unnecessary aggravation.

Work Clean and Safe

Start the Softail oil tank removal process by draining your oil tank. Draining the motorcycle one day before the job is ideal. Remove your battery and battery pad. Cut the factory squeeze clamps from the feed, return, and vent lines at the tank. Then, carefully pull the oil lines off of the oil tank. It is ideal to have rubber plugs ready in anticipation for residual oil. At this point, you can also reinstall the oil drain line plug.

Remove Hardware

Remove two nylock nuts from the lower front mounting points. There is one on the left and one on the right. They are both attached to rubber mounts. The right side rubber mount is also attached to a small bracket. This bracket should also be loosened or removed at this time. Next, use a 1/2″ wrench or socket to loosen and remove two bolts from the inside, rear of the battery compartment. Now, use a short 7/16″ wrench to remove the last two nylock nuts. These nylocks are threaded onto two more rubber mounts which are screwed into the rear oil tank bracket. This bracket can, now, also be removed.

Four Hands Are Better Than Two

The oil tank is now completely loose. Begin to slide the tank away from the motorcycle. You will need to snake the oil drain line out with the oil tank. As you do so, you will also need to route the positive battery cable out through the bottom of the oil tank. Grab a buddy to help you work it out of the frame.

Clean As You Go

Now is a good time to clean and inspect the areas of your motorcycle that you typically can not reach or view when the tank is installed. It is also a great time to practice reinstalling the oil tank. Especially if it is going out for paint or powder coating. Remember to purchase new squeeze style oil line clamps, and four new rubber mounts, in preparation for reinstallation after the Softail oil tank removal process is complete. If your oil lines need to be replaced, they should be replaced with HD, OEM, prebent lines.

Removing the Evolution Softail oil tank is not a deeply involved job. However, it does require focus, patience, and planning. Watch Bob and Mark remove the oil tank in this video. When you see how it’s done, you will be ready to take on this job yourself.

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