Compensaver and 2014 Comp

2014 comp

2009 through mid 2013 efforts to determine if the MoCo was developing a solution failed to produce any evidence that anything was being done. So in 2009 we set out to fix the Harley compensator failure issue. In February 2013 we introduced our product, the CompenSaver, at the V-twin Expo in Cincinnati. It was well received and our conservative booth received a staggering amount of interest and activity. There were a number of Harley representatives present and they frequented our booth throughout the event.

Production was underway and we released the CompenSaver for sale mid June of 2013.  Then in late August of 2013 the MoCo released their fix to the comp failures. Within a few days of that release, all and we mean everyone of the remaining prior style comps were removed from the shelves making them immediately unavailable. In the changes made by the MoCo to the 2014 comp all dimensions were altered making fitment of the CompenSaver impossible in its current design.

The CompenSaver for the pre 2014 version works in the following way;

  1. We developed an oil collection tray to redirect oil in to our centrifugal pump and also into the spokes and cam area.
  2. We use centrifugal force to clean the oil and force it into the sprocket bore and thrust areas that had been starved for lubrication and  were rapidly degrading from excessive friction and heat
  3. Oil is flooded into the sprocket spokes and cam contact surfaces along with the splines of the cam stopping the excessive wear.
  4. We placed a powerful magnet in the oil collection tray to also assist in cleaning the oil.
  5. 10’s of thousands of miles later in testing we had proven the failures were fixed once and for all.

Giving the MoCo the benefit of the doubt that they actually fixed the failure issue, we purchased several of the new units and set to installing and testing to see for ourselves.

A number of things soon became evident:

  1. Oil was now getting to the sprocket bore and that degrading of surfaces seems to be corrected.
  2. Metal debris is collecting at the center of the roller thrust bearing and in the oil passages.
  3. Inadequate supply of oil is making it to the spoke and cam contact surfaces along with the cam splines.

We are finding the wear between the spokes and cam is continuing at an accelerated rate. It is receiving some oil though it is very small and that appears to be slowing the degrading of the contact surfaces from the past versions. However we feel the wear is far to much to allow for the comp to survive for the life of the bike. It is one of those things that accelerates as it wears so it may start slower now than before but as the wear progresses and the grooving deepens it compounds the wear. This wear relieves the spring pressure allowing the sprocket and cam to bottom much easier. This also can allow for the thrust to have slack allowing the rollers to be, if you will, hammered.

Also of concern is the use of the axial roller bearing for the thrust surfaces. Roller bearings are meant to roll primarily in one direction. In this application it is a high speed rocking back and forth which the bearing was never designed to endure. Perhaps the boys at the MoCo know something we don’t?  The fiber thrust washers were failing, as best we could determine, due to running dry of lubrication creating excessive over heating of the material and actually melting it away. We felt the original decision by the MoCo to use the fiber thrust washer was a wise one. It absorbs some of the shock and imperfections in the design and made for a good insulator of noises. With the spokes and cam being an “As Cast” surface the two parts do not move keeping the sprocket in perfect alignment. There is an ever-so-slight wobble to the sprocket as it rotates and moves up and down the cam ramps. The fiber thrust can absorb most of this without damage. One of our concerns come from this wobble and its effect on the rollers receiving a varied pressure pattern. Time will tell.

In the development of the CompenSaver we went to great lengths to work out cleaning the oil as best we could. We experienced debris of all sorts, especially metal, collecting in the components and passages.  Once the debris collected in sufficient mass it began slowing and even stopping the flow of oil. Once we cleared that hurdle as best we could we stopped having clogging issues. The 2014 model has NO provision for debris. We have found metal and material in the passages and collecting in the radial roller bearing(as shown above). Should there be a complete stoppage of oil flow failure will soon follow.  We have no way of determining just how much of this debris the roller bearing can actually digest and not fail.

As GMR is installing more and more of these new comps one of the pressing issue is still the spokes and cam contact surfaces wearing and how to address that. We redesigned and have fully tested our oil collection and delivery tray to direct a generous flow of oil to the spokes and cam and cam splines. This supports what the MoCo has accomplished by stopping the spoke and cam wear of the contact surfaces. This wear reduction also translates into less debris in the primary which helps everything. Also the powerful magnet in the tray will aid in decreasing the volume of debris that is ingested by the comp and other components. With the addition of our Oil Tray a generous flow of oil is introduced into the spokes and underlying components and that dramatically increases the splash of the oil to the front of the comp assembly and into the MoCo’s oil scoop design. This added splash volume makes for a substantial increase of oil flow available for the SE comp’s centrifugal intake giving it every opportunity to operate at maximum effectiveness.

With almost a year of experience with the #42200064A the main source of complaints being voiced and published is the added noise of this assembly. The axial roller thrust bearing creates a metal on metal action which is greatly adding to the sound resonance of the assembly. Replacing it with a specifically designed composite thrust washer for this application relieves much of this noise. It also eliminates the growing concerns of the axial rollers and related parts.