All of the automotive starter manufacturers for the last decade have changed the way they produce field housings. The old style copper fields wound around a steel pole shoe  are a thing of the past. They have been replaced by made made permanent magnets. But, there are a number of advantages to this major structural change.


OLDER COPPER FIELDS : Copper is considered to be an expensive raw material and also a precious metal with volatile day to day prices. This makes stocking and delivering huge orders for large scale production on a specific budget an absolute nightmare. Lag time and downtime in an automated production plant is simply unacceptable. Availability and fast delivery time are everything for any and all automotive production plant suppliers.

However, this change to man made magnets has brought to light a number of beneficial performance factors to the user as well. Copper, when exposed to heat loses a percentage of conductivity. The hotter it gets, the weaker it gets, particularly with age from time of manufacture. When it is exposed to extreme heat, it can even become annealed which further damages insulation and conductivity / heat data. This is the reason why your old Chevy truck with the big block engine doesn’t start right, when it’s hot in the middle of summer.

Sometimes you’d just have to wait an hour, to let it cool down, then it would start right up.


MAN MADE MAGNETS : You won’t have that problem with man made permanent magnet starters. As a matter of fact, it seems the hotter they get (in an automotive or motorcycle atmosphere) the more efficient they become. This is a win/win for your old Chevy and for the Harley Davidson reverse motor on the Tri Glide. Particularly when powered by an AGM type battery where optimum torque is needed for conversion to power.


Another major advantage of man made permanent magnet field housings is they weigh in so much lighter. And, not only is the field housing only a fraction of the weight of the old style copper metal pole shoe type starter, but the new design allows an armature that is way lighter and smaller than it’s predecessor. Permanent magnet starters must be accompanied by a planetary gear reduction, but even still : The overall weight of the unit itself is probably only ¼ total weight of the older models.


IN CONCLUSION : it’s obvious that anytime a major manufacturer can latch onto a design that eases manufacturing costs, uses less natural resources, weighs less, is physically smaller, performs way better statistically, and is impervious to harsh environments, they latch onto it.

And this is what Harley Davidson did with the 83388-09 electric reverse motor for Tri Glide.      



The gear housing for the Harley trike is where the speed for the motor is converted into power to move the bike with weight on it. It consists of 2 independent stationary planetary gear tracks that mate up with 7 other gears when fully assembled and working. Basically, what it does, is slow down the final output, so at the gear so that the bike backs up with a slow yet powerful drive.

What we do : We completely disassemble the entire gear drive housing. We do not approve of the oil base grease Harley uses. We noticed a huge increase in performance by switching over to a silicone based white lithium grease. First we completely wash down all the gears in our tumblers and high pressure water wash machines.Then each individual part is routinely inspected for bushing tolerance wear and tear. Also each gear must be closely inspected for any wear or defects.

Also the shaft that the bendix comes out on has to be completely dis assembled, checked and polished on our lathes. All pivot points in the gear housing and all areas that the shaft may travel are lubed with synthetic 5w 30 oil. The gear itself is a travel wear point and must be lubed where it slides in and out on the output bearing.