This is my experience with some issues with the latest Victory motorcycles and possible bad software downloads to the ECU computer.A couple of weeks ago, I test rode the dealers KP demo bike with Stage I slip-ons and it ran flawlessly. I then traded my '04 TC for a just delivered, out of the crate, Indy Red KP Deluxe. I had the Victory Performance Drag Pipes installed also (mine had the crossover passage between them, it's right above the test bung for the O2). The bike seemed to run fine for about the first 10 miles, and then I noticed it backfiring loudly intermittently when closing the throttle decelerating in the same gear. When you up shifted gears, it would make a single misfire pop sound when letting off the throttle between gears.
My mileage was in the 33-35 mpg range and I had black soot all over the rear fender. The bike felt & sounded extremely lean, especially in a 30mph float. It didn't have anywhere near the power of the demo bike I rode.I took it back to the dealer after about 80 miles on it and they checked for leaking exhaust gaskets at the head and rechecked the calibration number and TPS. There were no exhaust leaks and everything was set correctly, so they richened it up 4 clicks.
I did have a little more power, but nothing else changed including the backfiring and popping. I put another 160 miles on the bike and the more I rode it, the worse it was sounding. In addition, there is an intermittent galling sound coming from the left side of the motor (and it's not the infamous primary gear noise) . At low speeds, there is an occasional loud clunk in the left side of the motor in addition to the normal tranny clunk when lightly rolling on & off the throttle.Also in addition, it started developing a slight misfire pop at idle and it doesn't matter if it's been idling for 3 seconds or 3 minutes.
After researching here and on a couple of other forums, I was beginning to think there was a problem with the drag pipes and the software download. I've got a great dealer (Victory of Terre Haute) who extremely understands and wants to make the bike right. I asked if we could put back on the original head pipes with the stage I slip-ons like the demo bike. He was more than willing to work with me and they loaded the correct software download, set the calibration, and adjusted the TPS. I picked the bike up tonight and the dealer said that the backfire was gone, but it's still got an occasional misfire at idle.The dealer also said they just discovered 3 other bikes today they just took out of the crates earier in the week that all have the same symptoms of backfiring/idle pops like mine.
One Vegas was straight out of the box with nothing done to it, a Hammer had drag pipes installed and the 8-Ball had the Stage I slip-ons. They called the factory and they are suspecting that there might be something wrong with the software download (like the '05 clutch engagement glitch they had).Riding the bike home, the backfire was gone, but it still has the intermittent pop (actually, more of a popping burp now that it has mufflers) between gear changes. The misfire pop at idle is still there and the intermittent loud clunk/galling noise is still present. I also discovered it makes a really strange squeal coming out of the torque compensator area when you downshift and initially let out on the clutch.I believe the problems are interrelated or if there are two separate issues here.
I don't know if the misfire/pop has something to do with a crank position pickup sensor or the driven gears it picks up on or if it's the software. I've also discovered on one of the other forums that they are having some bearing failures behind the torque compensator split gear assembly in the 100 inch motors. One of the posters there has had his replaced twice and several others are reporting problems also.I haven't had a chance to get back with my dealer yet, but I plan on getting the bike back to him ASAP and see what's going on with it..
Contributin author to Cycle Solutions and Kingpin Cruisers.
By: Jim Noss