It was only a matter of time... - Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Forum : Kawasaki VN750 Forums
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-16-2008, 09:17 PM Thread Starter
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Angry It was only a matter of time...

Not too long ago, I was working on my baby and in the process of wrenching, I nearly wrenched her right off the side stand. Fortunately, I saw it moving and was able to yank her back into place. I stress the fortunately part because my son was near the left front and I was sitting on the ground next to the left side cover. Would have been painful to say the least.

Anyway, I've finally got her back toether after the recent work and decided I'd fill her up tonight so I could go for an actual ride tomorrow, rather than a test ride to make sure she's running. All the way back from the station, I'm smelling raw gas. Then she starts missing on the left cylinder. I baby her into the driveway and get her turned around so I could back into the garage and turn her off.

As I'm pulling off my helmet, I can really smell gas, not just an after effect of filling up. So I fire it up and look at the carbs. Looking from the left, I can see fuel running down pretty good from the right side. So I kill the engine and gran a flashlight and my stool and get in position on the right side of the bike. I fire it up and it looks like gas is coming off of the choke plunger valve where it attaches to the carb. I try giving some choke and she dies. I fire it back up and while looking at the carbs give her some good rolls on the throttle.

With no warning, I feel the bike start walking away, and all I can do is watch. A little forward and then down she goes, onto her left side. Now hse's laying there, not running, with brand new fuel just pouring out of the gas cap. Some of you are probably aware of what a B it is to pick up this bike alone. I learned that today.

Let me share my level of stupidity so noone feels sorry for me, since I should have known better. My driveway slopes down pretty good, not a steep hill or anything, but enough that nothing on wheels has a problem getting rolling. I know this, just like I know how east this bike is to roll off the side stand. So suffice to say that I should have taken the time to park it at a 90 degree angle to the slope.

The damage: Left blinker toast, clutch lever toast, left mirror sheared the bolt off in the socket - toast, grip is toast, left rear blinker is toast, headlight bucket is a little rashed, speedo bucket is shredded all on the left side, probably toast. I haven't even checked to see if the forks got tweaked, but I rode it into the back yard and it seemed to run fine. Of course the clutch lever was nowhere near where it was supposed to be. More like 45 degrees off of level. There's also still the fuel leak at the carbs to be addressed....

So now I'm at a cross roads. I spent a ridiculous amount of money to get this bike (that I paid less than $1k for) up to par for touring with the wife. And now I'm looking at another nice chunk of change to get her back to where she was about 1 hour ago. I'm really a lot more pissed at myself than the bike. Damn!

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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-16-2008, 09:35 PM
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I am sorry to hear that. But it was not as bad as I thought. I thought that you were going to tell us that it had caught on fire and burned. Best of luck on your decision.

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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-16-2008, 09:47 PM
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I know exactly how you feel. I went and paid 2k for mine and thought it ran pretty well til today. Not too much wrong with the engine but I found the fuses blow too easily and need to clean the carbs and fix the wiring and do the Gambo trick and many others BUT once I get it all fixed up it will be well worth it I'll tell you.

I have to replace the brake lever and turn signals on right side cause the preveious owner dropped it but I think after all this you will be very happy with it.

Next time just remeber to lean it better so it won't fall. I've dropped a few myself due to stupidity but hey we are human right? LOL

Stay safe and hope you get it together soon for a long deserved ride.

James
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-16-2008, 10:48 PM
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For some of the parts, eBay may be your best bet, or Ron Ayers:
23005-1058 bucket assy.---$53.73
14025-1745 speedo cover-- 22.03
46092-1124 clutch lever---- 4.08
13091-1185 lever perch ---- 21.98 (if you don't want to drill and ez-out the mirror stud)

Scrounging salvage yards may net you something cheaper.

The foam-n-chrome grips are cheap enuff at 15 bucks a pair at Cycle Gear; they're all over California, so should be one not too far from you. They've got a wide selection of aftermarket turn signals, too, and some sport bike replacements. VN800/VN1500 mirrors are cheap on eBay a lot of the time, and fit fine; much better than the stock lollipops, altho I don't recall what mirrors you have.

The choke leaking problem may just be the cap on the plunger needing tightened, or the cap (two-piece) bad; don't recall an o-ring on the plunger itself but i may be wrong. All my carbs and parts are out in the shed, and it's rainin' like a cow peein' on a flat rock out there right now.

Jim

J.D.
Kerrville, TX
'95 Vulcan 750 "Therapy II",
aka "Raggedy Ann"
'95 VN750 project
'03 VN800B "The Little Black"
'04 VN800E Drifter project
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-16-2008, 11:24 PM
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My vn took the same trip as yours but mine just suffered a cracked side cover. I parked the bike in my garage, but the front wheel was just on the down side of the driveway and that's all it took to bring it down. The lucky part was I had a deck block as a stool that the bike fell on saving everything else. Had the bike rolled a bit more, the gas tank would have landed on the block.

FYI, now's a good time to upgrade to wide levers for comfort.

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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-17-2008, 12:10 AM Thread Starter
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rainin' like a cow peein' on a flat rock out there right now.....

I needed that laugh!

The saddest part is that the lever was one of a brand spankin new set of wides I bought to replace the stockers. Fo the time being I just rolled the bike to the back yard instead of hte gaage cause of the fuel. he wife said fix her up cause she refuses t oride on my sport bikes so I guess I'm gonna fix her. Maybe nowz the time to change the bars too. I gotta go over everything to make sure there is nothing else damaged. I was too pissed to look really closeearlier.

Thanks for the tip on the plunger - I'll definitely be taking the carbs off adnI'll check that out. I know that when the fuel started leaking nad I activated the choke, the engine died so it must not have been getting fuel from the choke. On the plus side, at leastI I found the leak beore it fell....

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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-17-2008, 03:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AJCruzin View Post
rainin' like a cow peein' on a flat rock out there right now.....

I needed that laugh!

The saddest part is that the lever was one of a brand spankin new set of wides I bought to replace the stockers. Fo the time being I just rolled the bike to the back yard instead of hte gaage cause of the fuel. he wife said fix her up cause she refuses t oride on my sport bikes so I guess I'm gonna fix her. Maybe nowz the time to change the bars too. I gotta go over everything to make sure there is nothing else damaged. I was too pissed to look really closeearlier.

Thanks for the tip on the plunger - I'll definitely be taking the carbs off adnI'll check that out. I know that when the fuel started leaking nad I activated the choke, the engine died so it must not have been getting fuel from the choke. On the plus side, at leastI I found the leak beore it fell....
<G> Glad to give ya a grin; believe me, I do feel yer pain. BTDT...too many times.

Jim

J.D.
Kerrville, TX
'95 Vulcan 750 "Therapy II",
aka "Raggedy Ann"
'95 VN750 project
'03 VN800B "The Little Black"
'04 VN800E Drifter project
'93 VN1500A custom project
VROC #16185
GCVROC #33

Photo album: http://www.flickr.com/photos/leekayd/sets
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-17-2008, 05:36 AM
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AJ, I need to go on a search (my garage is a disaster at the moment - too many disassembled things out there), but I may have a bunch of the parts you need. They aren't necessarily pretty (although I do have a wide grip clutch lever - new), but it'll be a whole lot cheaper (and easier on your marriage ) than going through Ayers. I know I don't have a speedo cover, but I may have the other parts. I'll pm ya when I've taken inventory.

C
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-17-2008, 01:01 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Cindy! I'll be going out to look at her later this morning to do a less emotional inventory.

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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-17-2008, 10:40 PM
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sorry to hear that you dropped your baby. I can say that i've seen mine go down more than my share of times. and they arent easy to stand back up alone. hope you can get her patched back up without issue.

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