Are you a Harley-Davidson biker having doubts about the derby cover and what to know what it is? If so, then you are definitely in the right place at the right time.
A derby cover is essentially a metal plate made using sheet steel, and it is used for covering the clutch of Harley-Davidson motorcycles. The origin of the early derby covers is difficult to research. The term “derby cover” is not actually listed in the Oxford English dictionary. The component might have been named after the derby hat, which is an ornament of the expression.
This correlation is very likely, as the first Harley-Davidson bikes were manufactured around the same time that derby hats were in fashion in the United States. Generally, derby covers come in three-hole or five-hole models, depending upon the specifications of the motorcycle it is being connected to.
In this article, you will get to know all about derby covers, what is a derby cover, different designs and models of derby covers, and more. Continue reading to get all the answers that you are looking for.
What is a derby cover
A derby cover on a Harley-Davidson bike is a metal plate, which is usually made using sheet steel. A derby cover is used for covering the clutch of your Harley-Davidson motorcycle. The main utility of a derby cover is to protect the workings of the clutch from possibly harmful dust, dirt, and other possible contaminants.
The origin of the derby cover can be quite difficult to identify. The term “derby cover” isn’t even listed in the Oxford English Dictionary. It might have been named after the derby hat, which is also an ornament of expression. The conjecture is very likely to be a possibility, since the first Harley-Davidson models were manufactured around the same time that derby hats were in fashion in the United States. These hats were used by eccentrically lavish individuals who used to attend the Kentucky Derby horse race during that time.
Since derby covers come in many different and unique designs, it can be quite difficult to choose the one that is perfect for you. If you are not particularly intrigued by the idea of following the pack, a good idea would be to design your own derby cover and get it custom engraved. There are many derby cover engravers on the Internet who have extensive experience when it comes to dealing with a Harley-Davidson derby cover.
Derby cover designs and models
Typically, derby covers come offered in three-hole or five-hole models, which will depend on the specifications of the motorcycle that it is connected to. This five-hole cover will offer more durability and protection. Since there is a wide assortment of derby covers that you can choose from, there will also be a wide range of prices. The lower-end derby covers are available for around $7 whereas the higher-end derby covers can go as high as $400, especially if they’re gold-plated. Derby covers serve a number of functions, such as holding license plates.
Custom-designed derby plates are pretty common on Harley-Davidson bikes, as they promote the individuality and free spirit associated with these bikes. The design engraved on the plate will be typically selected by the motorcycle’s owner with a special symbolic expression in mind. For example, if the Harley-Davidson rider is a die-hard Harley-Davidson aficionado, there’s a wide selection of chrome derby plates that comes engraved with assorted Harley-Davidson insignias. The classic derby cover is made up of simple smooth finished chrome and is free of any engravings.
How to change the Harley-Davidson derby cover
Since derby covers come situated in an easily accessible part of the motorcycle, they are rather simple to change. Motorcycle mechanics should always remove the derby cover when they are checking the internal mechanics of the transmission. For example, if you want to check if the throw-out bearings have to be changed, it’ll be important to remove the derby cover of your bike first. If, accidentally, your motorcycle’s derby cover is damaged or not reinstalled, the workings of the transmission can be seriously compromised.
One common mistake that most Harley-Davidson bikers make is that they replace the O-ring under the warped derby cover without changing the cover. Usually, a warped cover can be almost as bad as a damaged one, or in some cases, not having a cover at all.
Things to consider before changing the derby cover –
- If you’re looking to change the derby cover of your Harley-Davidson bike, ensure that you allow your bike to cool down properly
- Gather the necessary tools and remember to pick out the perfect derby cover replacement for your bike
- Have a decent-quality torque wrench with you
- Keep your Harley-Davidson bike vertical, preferably on a raised platform, so that you can avoid any oil spillage
Instructions to change the derby cover of your Harley-Davidson bike –
- Position your motorcycle properly in a vertical position
- First, you will need to remove the bolts present on the cover and remove the lid
- Check the condition of the gasket and O-ring by lightly pressing them with your finger
- Clean the gasket with a towel to ensure that there is no dirt or grime sticking around
- Get a new derby cover and place it in position
- Loosely place the screws on the derby cover
- Slowly tighten up the screws on the derby cover in a star pattern
- Take the torque wrench, tighten it, and then tighten the screws even more
- Congrats, you have successfully changed the derby cover of your Harley-Davidson bike.
Get the right perfect cover for your Harley-Davidson bike
A derby cover will protect the clutch while also adding extra style elements to your motorcycle. There are lots of high-quality derby cover parts that you can choose for your Harley-Davidson bike. There are also custom motorcycle derby covers that come in a wide variety of styles, including flames, skulls, US military, American flags, and more. There are tons of amazing brands where you can shop for derby covers. Moreover, you can also sync up your style elements with more Harley-Davidson motorcycle cover parts that include motorcycle primary covers and motorcycle inspection covers.
Some of the points that you need to keep in mind when buying a Harley-Davidson derby cover include –
- Go for a precision-machined high-quality covers that fit the same as the factory’s original
- There are bolt patterns available for all Harley-Davidson models such as 5-hole Twin Cam, 3-hole Big Twin, 4 and 6-hole Sportster
- A decent cover can be installed within 5 minutes or less if you’re using the factory bolts
- A decent derby cover will come with a one-year warranty
- There are hundreds of exciting designs that you can choose from, or you can request a custom design that has your favorite picture, logo, image, and more
- There are also options for the finish type as you can select from Glossy, Denim, Matte, or more
- There are derby covers that are made-made to order by finish type and bolt pattern
- When you’re looking for a derby cover, you’ll get the bolt pattern choice such as the 3, 4, 5, or 6-hole
Thank you for reading. Hopefully, now you know a lot more about derby covers, what is a derby cover, different designs and models of derby covers, and more. A derby cover is essentially a metal plate made using sheet steel, and it is used for covering the clutch of Harley-Davidson motorcycles.
The origin of the early derby covers is difficult to research. The term “derby cover” isn’t actually listed in the Oxford English dictionary. The component might have been named after the derby hat, which is an ornament of expression. This correlation is very likely, as the first Harley-Davidson bikes were manufactured around the same time that derby hats were in fashion in the United States. Generally, derby covers come in three-hole or five-hole models, depending upon the specifications of the motorcycle it is being connected to.