I "upgraded" my '94 VN750 w/26.5K miles => '06 w/750 miles! - Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Forum : Kawasaki VN750 Forums
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-28-2009, 11:08 PM Thread Starter
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I "upgraded" my '94 VN750 w/26.5K miles => '06 w/750 miles!

About 7 months ago, I got a 1994 VN750 with 23,700+ miles on it for $2,300. It came with a Mustang saddle seat, which I really like and is apparently hard to find now since Mustang doesn't make it any more now that the VN750 has been discontinued.

I had to get the carbs cleaned, put new tires on it and installed a whole bunch of cosmetic and accessory upgrades (MF battery, Stebel horn, Kuryakyn grips with Dual Star heated pads underneath them, a windscreen and luggage rack, etc.) I've put 3,000 miles on it in that time, despite winter layoff periods of not riding.

Earlier this week, more or less on impulse, I jumped at the chance to buy a 2006 VN750 with fewer than 750 miles on it for $3,900. Why? Because I really like the VN750, and had the idea that I could transfer nearly all my accessories to the newer bike (including the saddle), sell the older one for around $2,000 when riding season starts to someone who wants a used bike to learn on, and voila, I have basically as new a bike as imaginable for this make and model.

The guy I bought it from was a long-time motorcyclist with three bikes, having owned two VN750s before (including a '94 he had put over 20,000 miles on before buying this low-mileage '06 as a replacement), but now found himself riding his sportbikes all the time, so was clearing garage space. I have his name and number and all that, and he lives near me, so I have every confidence he wasn't trying to cover anything up.

That said, I'm fairly new to motorcycles (this is my first one) so now I'm worried I may be overlooking something obvious on my end.

The all-stock bike had sat in a garage for the better part of a year with enzyme solution in the tank. He had put a battery tender on the bike as well. After riding it home today I find it won't start. Uh-oh.

My first move will be to replace the battery with a MF one, but wouldn't a 30-minute ride be enough to recharge the battery via the alternator? Should I be worried about the stator?

Also, the fuel gauge is stuck on "E" even though the tank is full. He described this as a stuck float due to storing the bike with a full tank, and that it would probably resolve itself the next time the tank was refilled (after using it up). True, not true or "probably true but watch out for..."?

"Until you have the courage to lose sight of the shore, you will not know the terror of being forever lost at sea." (Despair.com)
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-02-2009, 03:35 PM
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Seems to me that if the tank was full and the float stuck it would be stuck on "F" not "E"... Could the float be saturated...???
When you say won't start, will it turn over with authority and won't start, does it groan and moan, turning over very slow like with a weak battery, was it cold, did you choke it, what does it do, not that I can help but I'm sure some of the good folks on the forum can if they know what is going on...
Maby this will bump it up and a good wrench will get on it...
Have a good one...Old Dog...

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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-02-2009, 04:23 PM
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I think I hate you right now.

Sold 750 (9-09)
Bought '07 900 Classic "LT" (6-09)
Mustand Seat (6-09)
Balanced Carbs (4-09)
Adjusted Mix Screws (4-09)
Drilled Baffles 8 holes (4-09)
R/R Relocated (3-09)
Splines Lubed (3-09)
Metzelers ME880 170/80 in back 100/90 in front (3-09)
Painted flat blak (3-09)
Kuri grips (8-08)
Kuri Longhorn pegs (8-08)
Iridium Plugs (8-08)
Highway bar/ engine guard(FS)
Some saddlebags no idea which ones
Facebook group Vulcan 750 Riders (Invite Only Group)
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-02-2009, 04:36 PM Thread Starter
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Jace, if it makes you feel any better, it's actually an '04 and not an '06. On the other hand it has got 555 miles on it, not 750.

Hmm, the gauge float being stuck seems to have resolved itself. I fired her up for a few minutes just before the big snowstorm hit my part of the country yesterday, and it rose up to the "F". So that's one less problem.

On the other hand, the battery seems pretty weak. I hooked it up to a tender until it turned green, but it was only good for two back-to-back cold starts before running out of enough juice to start the bike, requiring about an hour on the tender before it went green again. This was with the full choke on. It was pretty cold though (just around the freezing point). By "not starting" I mean the lights dim when I press the start button, even if I roll on the throttle with the choke fully open.

I took the battery out and it's already an MF battery; however if it was stock and 5 years old, (did the '04s come from the dealer with MF batteries?), and had run down to completely empty, it could be that it's just time to put in a new one. I'll drop a new AGM "Big Crank" in there, along with some new (Iridium why not) spark plugs, and see if that improves things.

I found that it didn't idle in my driveway so well at 32F either; it kept at just under 1,000 RPM even with the choke fully on, I had to keep twisting the throttle a little to keep it from stalling out. When the weather affords the chance, I'll pour half a can of Seafoam into the gas tank and run the bike for a 60 mile round trip or something to see if that helps.

"Until you have the courage to lose sight of the shore, you will not know the terror of being forever lost at sea." (Despair.com)
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-02-2009, 05:09 PM
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Congratulations on the new purchase.

The fuel gauge sticking in the E position could be caused by a bad connection on the fuel gauge sending unit (that's what I'd call it anyway). There's a little plastic connector on the left side of the bike (as you sit on it) that's right by the fuel tank. If that connector is disconnected, or if there's a bad connection (dirty, corroded, etc) it will show that your tank is empty. I'd take it apart and make sure that the connectors are good and clean, and also make sure that the connectors are securely connected.

On the battery issue. As far as I know, none of the 750's came stock with an AGM battery, so it's more than likely not standard. 30 minutes should be plenty of time to charge a bettery with the charging system, assuming that you weren't idling the whole time. But since it sat for the better part of a year, I wouldn't be surprised if it's the battery that's bad. I'd yank it out and take it down to the local parts house and have them do a load test on it. Some of them will tell you that they can't load test a motorcycle battery, my local Autozone can't/won't do it, I go to O'Reilly. If the battery tests bad, you found your problem, if it's good then you have other issues, maybe r/r or stator. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for you and sending good juju that it's just a bad battery.

Post some pics when you get a chance....cause yanno it doesn't exist without pics.

I smile 'cause I don't know what the h*ll is going on.
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-02-2009, 05:30 PM
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I bought an 03 new, traded it for a new 06, neither of them came with a MF battery...
Have a good one...Old Dog...

Southern Central Tennessee.......
Now on the Dark Side......
Girl's Bike 09 Sporty xl 1200 Custom...33k + & clickin......
Sportster Owner/Rider since age 72...lol... Rider since Simplex...???
09-xl1200 "C" Vivid Black, Cast wheels w/19" Frt., SE-Stage 1+, X14iEDs...
MicroTach +, Higher wider H-bars, GPS Mt., Mustach bar Hwy. pegs...
Viking Shock cutout Saddlebags, Rear Mt. Signal Lt. Kit, Fork Brace...
RoadKing Air Shocks, Mustang Seat, Progressive Fork Springs...
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