S&S 509 Vs. 510 Cam For Motorcycle

Have you ever wondered about the difference between the S&S 509 and 510 cam for motorcycles? Well, you’re in the right place! Today, we’re going to dive into the details and compare these two popular camshaft options. Whether you’re a seasoned rider or just getting into motorcycles, understanding the difference between these camshafts can make a big impact on your bike’s performance. So, let’s get started and find out which cam is the right fit for you!

Now, let’s talk about the S&S 509 cam. This camshaft is known for its smooth power delivery and excellent torque. It’s a great choice for riders who enjoy cruising around town or exploring scenic routes. With the 509 cam, you can expect a reliable and predictable performance that allows you to comfortably handle various riding conditions. However, if you’re looking for a more aggressive and high-performance cam, you may want to consider the S&S 510.

The S&S 510 cam is designed for riders who crave power and speed. It offers a more aggressive profile, resulting in increased horsepower and torque. This camshaft is perfect for those who want to push their motorcycle to the limit and experience thrilling acceleration. However, keep in mind that the 510 cam may sacrifice some low-end power for the sake of top-end performance. So, if you’re someone who loves racing or enjoys a fast ride on open roads, the S&S 510 cam might be the right choice for you.

In our upcoming article, we’ll provide a more comprehensive comparison between the S&S 509 and 510 cams. We’ll explore the technical specifications, performance characteristics, and real-world applications of these camshafts. So, stay tuned to learn more and make an informed decision about which cam is best suited for your motorcycle. Whether you go with the smooth and reliable 509 or the powerful and aggressive 510, both options are sure to enhance your riding experience.

SS 509 Vs. 510 Cam For Motorcycle

Overview of S&S 509 vs. 510 Cam

When it comes to enhancing the performance of your motorcycle, one of the upgrades you might consider is replacing the stock camshaft with an aftermarket one. S&S Cycle, a renowned manufacturer of high-performance motorcycle parts, offers two popular camshaft options: the S&S 509 and the S&S 510. These cams have gained popularity among motorcycle enthusiasts for their ability to improve power output, torque characteristics, and overall performance. In this article, we will compare the S&S 509 and 510 cams, highlighting their key differences, performance capabilities, applications, installation processes, durability, maintenance requirements, user reviews, cost, aftermarket support, and expert recommendations. By the end, you will have a comprehensive understanding of both cams and be able to make an informed decision when choosing between the S&S 509 and 510 for your motorcycle.

What are S&S 509 and 510 cams?

The S&S 509 and 510 cams are high-performance camshaft options designed for Harley-Davidson motorcycles. These cams are engineered to provide increased power and torque, resulting in improved acceleration, top speed, and overall riding experience. Made from high-quality materials and utilizing advanced manufacturing techniques, the S&S 509 and 510 cams are precision-engineered to deliver exceptional performance gains.

Key differences between S&S 509 and 510 cams

While the S&S 509 and 510 cams share similarities in terms of their design and performance capabilities, there are key differences that set them apart. The primary difference lies in their lift and duration specifications. The S&S 509 cam has a lift of 0.509 inches and duration of 244 degrees, while the S&S 510 cam offers a lift of 0.510 inches and duration of 248 degrees. These differences may seem minor, but they can have a significant impact on the overall performance characteristics of the motorcycle, including power output, torque delivery, and throttle response.

Performance Comparison

Power output of S&S 509 cam

When it comes to power output, the S&S 509 cam delivers impressive results. With its high lift and duration specifications, this camshaft is designed to maximize power throughout the RPM range. Riders can expect a noticeable increase in horsepower and torque, translating to a more exciting ride and improved overall performance.

Power output of S&S 510 cam

The S&S 510 cam takes it a step further by offering slightly higher lift and duration specifications compared to the 509 cam. As a result, riders can experience even more significant gains in power output. The increased lift allows for improved valve opening, allowing more air and fuel into the combustion chamber, resulting in enhanced combustion efficiency and increased power.

Torque characteristics of S&S 509 cam

In terms of torque characteristics, the S&S 509 cam ensures a broad and usable torque curve. This means that riders can enjoy ample torque throughout the RPM range, resulting in smooth acceleration and excellent low-end grunt. Whether you’re cruising on the highway or navigating twisty roads, the S&S 509 cam provides the torque needed to tackle any riding situation with ease.

Torque characteristics of S&S 510 cam

The S&S 510 cam offers similar torque characteristics to the 509 cam but with slightly more emphasis on mid-range and high-end torque. This means that riders can expect improved acceleration and passing power at higher RPMs. The 510 cam provides a thrilling burst of torque, ideal for riders who enjoy high-performance riding or require extra power for overtaking on the open road.

Acceleration and top speed comparison

Both the S&S 509 and 510 cams excel in improving acceleration and top speed. With their increased power output and torque characteristics, riders can expect quicker acceleration, allowing them to reach higher speeds more rapidly. The enhanced top speed capabilities of these cams ensure that you can achieve and maintain higher speeds effortlessly, making long rides or track days even more exhilarating.

Applications and Suitability

Motorcycle models compatible with S&S 509 cam

The S&S 509 cam is compatible with a wide range of Harley-Davidson models, including the Twin Cam 88, Twin Cam 96, Twin Cam 103, and Evolution engines. Whether you own a Softail, Dyna, or Touring model, the S&S 509 cam can be a suitable upgrade to enhance your bike’s performance.

Motorcycle models compatible with S&S 510 cam

Similar to the S&S 509 cam, the S&S 510 cam is compatible with various Harley-Davidson models, including the Twin Cam 88, Twin Cam 96, Twin Cam 103, and Evolution engines. These cams are often favored by riders with a passion for high-performance riding and a desire for maximum power. If you own a Harley-Davidson with one of these engine options, the S&S 510 cam could be an appealing option.

Situations when S&S 509 cam is preferred

The S&S 509 cam is an excellent choice for riders seeking a balance between power, torque, and overall rideability. It is suitable for those who want to enhance the performance of their motorcycle without compromising the bike’s low-end torque and drivability. Additionally, if you frequently ride in urban areas or encounter traffic, the S&S 509 cam can provide the low-end grunt necessary for responsive starts and maneuvering through congested roads.

Situations when S&S 510 cam is preferred

The S&S 510 cam is ideal for riders who prioritize high-end power and exhilarating performance. If you regularly engage in spirited riding, track days, or long-distance highway cruising, the S&S 510 cam can provide the extra power needed for aggressive acceleration and passing maneuvers. Additionally, if you’ve already made other performance upgrades to your motorcycle, such as exhaust and intake modifications, the S&S 510 cam can complement those enhancements and maximize their potential.

Installation and Tuning

Installation process for S&S 509 cam

Installing an S&S 509 cam requires some mechanical knowledge and experience. It is recommended to consult the installation instructions provided by S&S Cycle, as they provide detailed steps and guidelines for a successful installation. Basic mechanical tools are required, and it is advisable to seek professional assistance if you are not familiar with camshaft installation procedures.

Installation process for S&S 510 cam

Installing an S&S 510 cam follows a similar process to the S&S 509 cam. However, due to the slightly higher lift and duration specifications of the 510 cam, additional adjustments and modifications may be necessary. It is crucial to carefully follow the installation instructions provided by S&S Cycle to ensure proper fitment and to avoid any potential issues during installation.

Necessary adjustments and modifications

When installing either the S&S 509 or 510 cam, it is essential to consider other components that may need adjustment or modification. This can include valve springs, pushrods, lifters, and cam plates. S&S Cycle provides guidance on the necessary adjustments and modifications specific to each camshaft, ensuring optimal performance and preventing any potential issues down the line.

Tuning tips for optimal performance

After installing the S&S 509 or 510 cam, tuning your motorcycle’s fuel injection or carburetor system is crucial to optimize performance. It is recommended to consult with a professional tuner who has experience working with aftermarket camshafts. They can fine-tune the fuel and ignition maps to ensure the best possible power delivery and overall performance.

SS 509 Vs. 510 Cam For Motorcycle

Durability and Maintenance

Longevity of S&S 509 cam

S&S Cycle is well-known for producing durable and reliable motorcycle parts, and the S&S 509 cam is no exception. When properly installed and maintained, the 509 cam can provide years of trouble-free operation. Routine maintenance, such as regular oil changes and valve adjustments, is crucial to ensure the longevity of the camshaft.

Longevity of S&S 510 cam

Like the S&S 509 cam, the S&S 510 cam is designed to withstand the demands of high-performance riding. With proper maintenance and regular check-ups, the 510 cam can offer long-lasting performance and reliability. It is important to follow S&S Cycle’s maintenance recommendations and periodically inspect the camshaft for any signs of wear or damage.

Maintenance requirements for S&S 509 cam

To keep your S&S 509 cam in optimal condition, regular oil changes are essential. It is recommended to use high-quality motorcycle oil and follow the manufacturer’s guidelines regarding oil change intervals. Additionally, regular valve adjustments should be performed to ensure proper valve clearance, which can help prevent premature wear on the camshaft and other engine components.

Maintenance requirements for S&S 510 cam

Similar to the S&S 509 cam, the S&S 510 cam requires routine maintenance to ensure longevity. Following the manufacturer’s recommended oil change intervals and using high-quality motorcycle oil is crucial. Regular valve adjustments are also necessary to maintain proper valve clearance and prevent any potential issues related to camshaft wear.

User Reviews and Feedback

Positive feedback for S&S 509 cam

Users who have installed the S&S 509 cam have praised its performance improvements, noting increased power and torque across the RPM range. Many riders have reported improved acceleration and responsiveness, making their motorcycles more enjoyable to ride. The ease of installation and overall value for money have also garnered positive feedback.

Positive feedback for S&S 510 cam

Enthusiasts who have opted for the S&S 510 cam have similarly reported positive results. They have witnessed a significant increase in power and torque, particularly in the mid-range and high-end RPMs. Riders enjoy the exhilarating acceleration and top speed capabilities afforded by the 510 cam, making it a popular choice among performance-oriented motorcycle owners.

Negative feedback for S&S 509 cam

While the S&S 509 cam has received mostly positive feedback, some users have experienced issues related to valve train noise. These issues can often be attributed to improper installation or the need for additional adjustments. However, it is important to note that these instances are relatively rare, and when installed and tuned correctly, the 509 cam provides outstanding performance.

Negative feedback for S&S 510 cam

Negative feedback for the S&S 510 cam is scarce, but some users have reported issues with power delivery and fuel efficiency. It is crucial to consider the other modifications made to the motorcycle and ensure that the entire setup is properly tuned for optimal performance. The expertise of a professional tuner can help address any potential issues and fine-tune the motorcycle to deliver the desired results.

Cost Comparison

Price of S&S 509 cam

The price of the S&S 509 cam varies depending on the retailer and any additional components that may be included in the purchase. On average, you can expect to spend around $300 to $500 for an S&S 509 cam. It is important to factor in any installation or tuning costs when budgeting for this upgrade.

Price of S&S 510 cam

Similarly, the price of the S&S 510 cam can vary, typically ranging from $350 to $600. The price may fluctuate depending on the specific model and any additional components that are included with the camshaft. It is advisable to check with retailers or authorized S&S Cycle dealers for the most up-to-date pricing information.

Value for money comparison

Both the S&S 509 and 510 cams offer excellent value for the performance gains they provide. Considering the improvements in power, torque, acceleration, and overall riding experience, these cams are an investment that can significantly enhance your motorcycle’s performance and enjoyment. When weighing the cost against the potential benefits, many riders find that the increased performance and satisfaction justify the expense.

Aftermarket Support

Availability of performance upgrades for S&S 509 cam

S&S Cycle offers a wide range of performance upgrades and accessories specifically designed to complement the S&S 509 cam. This includes air cleaner assemblies, exhaust systems, and tuning components that can further optimize the performance gains provided by the 509 cam. The availability of these upgrades ensures that riders can fully maximize the potential and enjoy a complete performance package.

Availability of performance upgrades for S&S 510 cam

Similar to the S&S 509 cam, S&S Cycle provides an extensive selection of performance upgrades for the S&S 510 cam. From exhaust systems to air cleaners and tuning components, riders have the opportunity to customize their motorcycle’s performance and tailor it to their specific preferences. The availability of these upgrades allows for further fine-tuning and optimization of the 510 cam’s performance capabilities.

Support and resources from S&S Cycle

S&S Cycle is renowned for its exceptional customer support and commitment to providing resources for their products. Their website offers comprehensive installation instructions and technical documents specific to each camshaft, ensuring that customers have access to the information they need for a successful installation. Additionally, S&S Cycle’s customer service team is readily available to answer any questions or address any concerns that may arise during the installation or operation of the S&S 509 or 510 cam.

Expert Recommendations

Professional opinions on S&S 509 cam

Experts in the motorcycle industry widely regard the S&S 509 cam as an excellent choice for riders seeking a boost in performance without compromising daily drivability. Its balanced power output and broad torque curve make it suitable for various riding applications, from commuting to spirited weekend rides. Professional opinions often emphasize the importance of proper installation and tuning to realize the full potential of the 509 cam.

Professional opinions on S&S 510 cam

Experts often recommend the S&S 510 cam for riders seeking maximum power and performance gains. Its emphasis on mid-range and high-end torque make it particularly enticing for those who enjoy spirited riding or touring at higher speeds. However, professional opinions also emphasize the need for proper tuning and considerations for other modifications to ensure optimal results.

Factors to consider when choosing between the two

When choosing between the S&S 509 and 510 cams, several factors should be taken into consideration. It is essential to evaluate your riding style, the type of motorcycle you own, and your performance goals. If responsive low-end torque and everyday practicality are important, the S&S 509 cam may be the more suitable option. On the other hand, if you crave thrilling acceleration and high-end power, the S&S 510 cam could be the better choice. Additionally, considering your overall budget, installation, and maintenance requirements can also play a role in your decision-making process.


In conclusion, the S&S 509 and 510 cams offer motorcycle enthusiasts the opportunity to enhance their motorcycle’s performance and overall riding experience. Both cams deliver impressive power gains, improved torque characteristics, and exhilarating acceleration. The S&S 509 cam strikes a balance between power and drivability, making it suitable for a wide range of riding scenarios. On the other hand, the S&S 510 cam prioritizes high-end power and performance, catering to those seeking an extra edge in their motorcycle’s capabilities. Whichever camshaft you choose, it is important to ensure proper installation, tuning, and maintenance to realize the full potential of these upgrades. Consult with professionals, utilize available resources, and consider expert recommendations when making your decision. With either the S&S 509 or 510 cam, you can enjoy an enhanced riding experience and take your motorcycle to the next level.

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