Itís been quite a few years since Iíve been in the forum, ever since a pickup truck took out my 86í about 6 years ago. But I know this to be a veritable gold mine of knowledge and information and so I turn humbly to your wisdom for help. Please forgive the following novel, but itís as concise as I could tell it. For the last two seasons Iíve been riding a like-new 94í Vulcan 500 which was perfect in every way, and I just sold it to buy another 750 (1989) with some nice change left over. It was almost three hours away from me, and after conversing with the owner over the phone, I learned it ran great and he commuted on it an hour to work often and it just had a few cosmetic items to clean up. Turns out his definition of ďgreatĒ is far from mine. I did buy it though and rode it back the three hours home. It actually rode fine on the highway, but I knew it needed carb cleaning because the tank was rusty inside and it idled high and needed a lot of throttle to take off without bogging out.
Once home I pulled off the gas tank and got all the rust out I could. The screens on the petcock were fine, so I didnít think much rust would have gotten in the carbs, so I just dumped a half can of seafoam in the gas to try and clean them out. Problem was, after that, it took half the host of heaven to get it to start, and then even after warming up for 20 minutes I could never make it half way around the block without it dying and having to walk it back home (wouldnít restart). Plugs were always wet when I pulled them out. So I pulled the carbs and found one pilot jet partially clogged and the other totally clogged. I cleaned them out with a stick pin (tiny tiny hole in there), and cleaned everything else on the carbs with the exception of taking them apart and looking in the float chamber (I know, I know). But I reasoned that the floats didnít sound stuck, and when I used a clear hose to check the fuel levels on the bike, it looked to be within range, so I filled them with pure Seafoam and let them soak 24 hours before reassembling the whole thing. Afterwards it started easier than before (easier being a relative term) and definitely ran better once started, but no matter how long I warmed it up, it still stalls halfway around the block, leaving me walking home.
So I went out and in great pain parted with a hundred dollars for a Deka AGM maintenance free battery and NGK Iridium plugs. I also ran the meter over my R/R and Stator and both seemed to test fine. I installed the battery and plugs and then also decided to do the adjustment procedure noted many times in the forum on my air fuel screws. After removing the plugs and turning them in then backing them out 2.5 turns, I tried to start. Cranks much faster, but no start. After cleaning the carbs and before I replaced the battery and plugs and set the A/F screw to 2.5 out, it would start right up and run with a shot of starter fluid, but now a shot will start it and run for about 4 seconds and then die again (I hate using that stuff, but I also hate running my starter for an hourÖ 6 in one hand half a dozen in the other). I figured maybe 2.5 turns is not right for me, so I checked the manual and it says 1 5/8 turns, so I did thatÖ no change.
So to recapÖ
1. When I picked it up, it ran crappy but I did manage to ride it 120 miles, shutting it off and restarting three times along the way. Once home I could get it to start only after an hour of cranking but couldnít get farther than half a block.
2. After cleaning the carbs and reinstalling, it ran better but still couldnít break the half block barrier without dying no matter how much warm up.
3. After new AGM battery and iridium plugs and fiddling with the Air Fuel screw, still not starting and even after starter fluid wonít idle.
I wish I had got a good count on the A/F screws when I turned them in, but theyíre not easy to reach on the bike, and I kept dropping the screw driver and losing count, so I just stopped trying and focused on the 2.5 out. From this mess can anyone see any obvious things that I can turn to next? Iím feeling very defeated by this
. Thanks in advance for any help.