Not Cranking - Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Forum : Kawasaki VN750 Forums
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-21-2019, 09:09 AM Thread Starter
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Not Cranking

Mine sits on a battery tender - light is green (battery charged) - petcock on - choke on - and tried reserve - looked in tank, can see gas - moto in neutral, kickstand up, kill switch off - everything suggests the moto should crank - it does not - sputters the 1st attempt. what am i missing -

Last edited by xirnibor; 05-21-2019 at 09:13 AM.
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-21-2019, 11:36 AM
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Sounds like all of the safety lockouts are OK, or the starter wouldn't turn at all.
Just to clarify, the starter is turning the crankshaft even after the first sputter, but the engine never fully starts?
Has it been sitting for a long time, or is this a recent development?
How old is the battery? An old battery can measure "fully charged" but lack the cranking amps to do it's job properly. Try jumper cables to a car battery just to see if some extra juice solves the problem. The battery can also be tested at the local parts store.

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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-21-2019, 11:41 AM Thread Starter
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i cant tinker with it again until around 6pm - i usually ride it on sunny days to work - it sits on the weekend, so i went from riding it last friday to trying to crank it yesterday - didnt get any time with it - tried again this morning, sputters - i will try the jump from car later - not sure about it turning the crankshaft -

i will also check the fuses on the left side under (fairing?/pastic cover) when i can tonight -

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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-21-2019, 05:11 PM
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Do you have an AGM battery?

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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-22-2019, 08:51 AM Thread Starter
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I can't explain it. Went home, tried cranking it - cranked up - didn't do anything different than in the morning time - these motos make no sense to me -it is the 1st I've owned that is carb versus FI - personally, I just don't get the gremlins. I enjoy riding it, otherwise I'd sell it.

Thank You for the replies- until next time! (prob 2 days from now)
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-22-2019, 09:05 AM
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Might have just been flooded. *shrug*

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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-22-2019, 02:38 PM
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For the record, "cranking" means that pressing the starter causes normal starting noises. The engine is rotating, but its not firing or running.

Not cranking is what happens when the battery is dead. No sounds or just a clicking noise.

It's a pet peeve of mine when people confuse those terms. I'm not mad at you, but the dozens of people that came before you. Like when people want to show me their new "screensaver", and are talking about thier new wallpaper. How is that new picture supposed to save your screen? Sorry.....triggered.

So it sounds like your engine is cranking just fine, but it's failing to start or run. Are you applying any throttle to start? Mine always needs a touch to fire up. More than 1/4 and mine won't start.


'89 Vulcan 750 Bought 4/12/18 @ 17805.9 miles $800
Purchased stock. Wrecked once
22490.0+ miles

Completed modifications:
Removed mufflers, straight pipes out of GB
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Pick-up coil re-gapped to .020"
Compufire 55402 r/r series regulator
USB Outlet + Voltmeter
Repainted Metallic Blue w/ new tank bages
Ear Shave (wo/ coasters) 40/140 NO shims 45MPG
MCCT conversion

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(Possible) ignition advance
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-22-2019, 04:02 PM
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Clearly sounds like a gremlin-bell malfunction, or perhaps lack of a gremlin-bell. Easy fix.

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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-23-2019, 05:48 PM
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Yes, cranking means that the starter is turning the engine over. That's all that it means. You don't need gas or even spark plugs to crank the engine. That term came from the days of the Model T, when the engine was literally started with a hand "crank" If the engine is turning over (crankshaft rotating and pistons going up and down) then your problem has nothing to do with cranking. Failure to start can be caused by a lot of different things. An engine requires 3 things to be able to start and run. A proper air/fuel mixture, a spark at the right time, and compression. An engine can still start and run if any or all of these things are not perfect, it just won't do it very well. That's where the fun starts. You have to check these things and make sure they are spot on if it is going to start and run like it is supposed to.

The reason I like carburetors and even points and condenser ignition is that they can still function if they are not perfect. They can be worked on beside the road. When EFI and CDI fail, they fail completely, there is no way to rig them

I am a motorcyclist, NOT a biker.


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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-23-2019, 08:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VN750Rider/Jerry View Post
The reason I like carburetors and even points and condenser ignition is that they can still function if they are not perfect. They can be worked on beside the road. When EFI and CDI fail, they fail completely, there is no way to rig them
In 34 years of driving, I've never had an EFI or CDI fail. I took a car to 230,000 miles and my current car just hit 182,000. Both started perfectly in all weather. Only EFI issue I've ever had is the occasional 02 sensor (which still runs with a massive hit to mpg), a bad ignition coil (not unique to EFI) and a bad throttle position sensor (still ran, but had erratic idle). All but the 02 sensor could be a roadside repair.

Sure, they may fail completely, but they are the last thing to fail. So it's more of IF they fail. 230,000 miles of flawless operation means I don't ever need to rig them.

Meanwhile, carb vehicles are fussy when they sit for awhile. Change an intake or an exhaust and you retune. Go up a mountain and you retune. Never mind the mechanical wear on points and distributors. Auto chokes fail. High idles get stuck.

Doing the ear shave on my bike cost me about 6-8 hours of pulling and rejetting the carbs to tune it in, vs grabbing a programmer and updating the fuel map in 20 minutes.

I've learned a lot about carbs, owning this bike. But if my budget allowed, I would never drive another carbureted vehicle in my life again.


'89 Vulcan 750 Bought 4/12/18 @ 17805.9 miles $800
Purchased stock. Wrecked once
22490.0+ miles

Completed modifications:
Removed mufflers, straight pipes out of GB
110/90 Front Tire
Pick-up coil re-gapped to .020"
Compufire 55402 r/r series regulator
USB Outlet + Voltmeter
Repainted Metallic Blue w/ new tank bages
Ear Shave (wo/ coasters) 40/140 NO shims 45MPG
MCCT conversion

Planned modifications:
Custom LED turn signals
Windshield
Highway Pegs
(Possible) ignition advance
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