How to Remove a Twin Cam Harley Oil Tank

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In this video we take a look at removing the Harley oil tank from the Twin Cam Softail. 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 to access your starter motor or if you have had catastrophic engine failure, you will need to remove and flush your oil tank.

Start by planning a way to lay out and label the hardware you will be removing. In the event that the Harley oil tank is out of the motorcycle for a long period of time; you will need to have a way to remember the hardware locations and the assembly sequence. Of course, we always suggest to refer to your service manual. One simple method we also suggest is to use a flat section of cardboard. You can push the hardware onto the cardboard in groups and make notes on the cardboard.

  • Remove your battery and drain the oil tank.
  • Remove the two small fasteners that retain the ECM mounting bracket and lay this bracket to the side.
  • Remove the hardware that secures your splash guard and set the guard aside.
  • Loosen, but do not remove the three bolts that retain the the front, top, oil tank bracket.
  • Next, remove the two small bolts on the rear oil tank bracket and, loosen, but do not remove, the two larger bolts.
  • Cut the drain line and feed line clamps.
  • These clamps should be replaced later with that same factory or factory style clamps. Save the cut clamps for later reference.
  • When you remove the rubber sections of oil line, prepare for residual oil.
  • Note: Bob takes the time to school us on the typical Softail oil lines.
    The lowest line is the feed line. The highest line is always the vent line. The line that falls between is the oil return line. This is also typical of the Evolution oil tank.

    Now you can remove the return and vent lines from the Harley oil tank. Pull away the round, chrome cover. This exposes a plastic fitting that you will need to squeeze and pull outward to release the line(s) from the oil tank. These fittings and corresponding o rings should be replaced every time they are removed. They are relatively cheap.

    When the lines are pulled away from the tank, it is important to seal, or plug the ends to eliminate the chance of outside contamination entering your motor.

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