Harley-Davidson Fxdi35 Dyna Super GlideAlso found in the August '06 issue was the new 35th anniversary FXDI Dyna, which got its start from Willie G. Davidson, the grandson of William A. Davidson, one of the company's founders. Now the senior vice president and chief styling officer, Willie continued to push the styling envelope as he designed and built what is known as the first factory custom, the FX 1200 Super Glide. Realizing how significant that first Super Glide was to the Motor Company, Harley decided that in 2006 it would pay homage to the original motorcycle by producing a limited-edition (3,500 bikes) 35th Anniversary model. The bike is outfitted with all of the latest technology Harley has to offer but has styling cues that hark back to the model produced in 1971.
All the Dyna frames have been completely redesigned to provide a significantly stiffer platform on which to build a motorcycle. The bike's tubular frame and rectangular backbone combine to give the FXDI35 a neck rake set to 29 degrees. In a departure from previous models, the fork tubes have been upped in size and now boast a diameter of 49mm.
This increase in size is designed to give the rider an uncompromising, stout feel with improved handling, as well as a very beefy look. Last year's narrow-glide trees have been replaced by a set of mid-glide trees that allow room for the front 19x2.5-inch laced wheel, 300mm (11.8-inch) floating rotor (front only), and four-piston caliper. Also designed with additional stiffness in mind are new 1-inch axles both front and rear. The swingarm has been reengineered for better control as it accepts a wider, 160/70B17 rear tire that replaces last year's 150/80B16 tire.
The engine and transmission have been redesigned for 2006. The new transmission is a first for Harley, a six-speed straight from the factory that has been dubbed the "six-speed Cruise Drive transmission" and is standard issue on all Dyna models. The new gearbox includes helical gears for quieter operation and easier and smoother shifting due to newly designed dog rings. The primary drive ratio (raised to 1.353:1) takes advantage of the new transmission, and new inner and outer housings were designed to accommodate the internal components, including a new automatic primary chain tensioner. The newly designed clutch ball-and-ramp assembly resulted in a 35-percent reduction at the clutch lever, we're told.
For the engine, Harley stuck with its rugged vibration-isolated, Twin-Cam 88 engine to power the Dyna line. The company did, however, make some major improvements designed to give customers better reliability while requiring less maintenance, as its engineers hurdled a few EPA and CARB roadblocks (future standards) along the way. Without a doubt the most significant technological advancement to the fuel-injected engine (carburetion is no longer available on any of the Dynas) is the addition of real-time feedback, allowing the engine's fuel map to be altered on the fly. This is accomplished with the addition of oxygen sensors threaded into the exhaust pipes close to the heads. By sensing the concentration of oxygen in the exhaust gasses, the system is able to make adjustments to the bike's fuel map, ensuring the motor is operating at its optimum capabilities. A new cam plate has found its way into the cam chest. Improvements in the cam chest include a new roller chain, new bearings, and an automatic hydraulic chain tensioner designed to require far less maintenance than previous incarnations.
Over the years Harley has strived to improve the oiling systems of its engines, and this year is no exception. An upgraded oil pump has yielded 10-percent more flow and a 23-percent increase in scavenging capabilities of the pump. Other oiling-system improvements include an integral oil filter and oil-cooler adapters.
Sitting in the saddle, you can appreciate how ergonomically well laid-out this bike is. As you transition from the straight and narrow to conditions requiring you to throw the bike from side to side, this bike is rock-solid. Toss it into a curve, and it stays right where you put it. The meaty 160/17-inch rear tire does a great job of gripping the asphalt.
The bike is well-balanced and easy to lean to both the right and left sides. According to the factory, you won't touch down 'til the bike is angled 32 degrees to the right or 34 degrees to the left. The Dyna has plenty of ground clearance before you start making sparks. Riding hard is what this bike is all about. From its improved rubber-mounted driveline to all of its chassis improvements and new six-speed transmission, we had a hard time finding anything that we didn't like about the bike-except for the fact that we had to give it back once we were done testing it.
Covington Cycle City
4600 Blue Mound Rd.
3700 West Juneau Ave.
Big Dog Motorcycles