How to remove sportster baffles

Written by teresa patterson
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How to remove sportster baffles
Thunder On the Road (motorcycles headlights image by jedphoto from

Harley-Davidson Sportster owners love the compact design of their bike, but many wish it had a big-bike sound. According to certified Harley-Davidson mechanic and Sportster owner Benny Miller, removing the baffles from the exhaust pipes will turn that distinctive Sportster purr into a full-throated roar. It requires only a few steps to remove the baffles using tools that can often be rented at the local auto parts store.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

Things you need

  • Phillips head screwdriver
  • Blind hole puller set
  • Pilot bearing puller attachment
  • Work gloves

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  1. 1

    Secure the pilot bearing attachment loosely to the threaded end of the blind hole puller while keeping the claw end closed. Place the claw end of the pilot bearing attachment inside the exhaust pipe so that the notches on the claw line up with the open louvres on the baffle. Keep the top of the pilot bearing attachment's adjustment rod within reach.

  2. 2

    Turn the rod clockwise to open the claw until two notches on the claw catch in the open louvres of the baffle. Continue to turn the handle of the pilot bearing attachment until it is as tight as possible.

  3. 3

    Use a Phillips head screwdriver to remove the screw on the underside of the exhaust pipe holding the baffle in place.

  4. 4

    Grasp the sliding weight on the rod of the blind hole puller. Slide the weight down the rod until it gently touches the exhaust pipe then slam the weight towards the handle brace at the other end of the rod.

  5. 5

    Repeat Step 4 until the baffle pulls loose from the exhaust pipe. The continuous hammering pressure of the weight will eventually pull even a tightly-fitted baffle free. Using gloves, pull the baffle out of the pipe and discard.

Tips and warnings

  • Removing the baffles can often result in a loss of power and compression. You can regain compression without compromising sound by installing torque cones.
  • Baffles are usually made of hazardous materials and fibres. Avoid touching the baffle with bare skin or breathing any dust or fibres from the baffle.

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