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Put music to our troubles
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Discussion Starter #1
After a number of rainy weeks in Pennsylvania I finally got the first opportunity to get a nice hour and a half ride in on the Vulcan yesterday.
On Saturday I put in some wrench time and replaced the sparkpugs with NGK Iridium plugs and replaced both turn signal housings. (The person I bought the bike from had the turn signals held together with tinfoil and electrical tape.)

On Sunday I filled the tank with nice fresh mid grade gas, dumped in some seafoam and took off for an hour and a half. I forgot how nice the Nockamixon area of Pennsylvania is and how much better these trips are on a motorcycle. I think the best part is taking in all of the smells (the lake water smell, the forest smells, grilled hamburgers, fresh grass clippings) - you just don't get that same experience in a car.

The ride was great (I could actually notice a difference from the short trips with the old plugs and stale gas). The only thing I noticed was that at the end of the trip (about 50 miles in) I was stalling at the stop signs / traffic lights. The tach was reading about 500 rpms at idle, but at the start of the trip it was around 1500rpms at idle. No backfires of pops, just really low idle. Maybe this isn't the right forum section, but any thoughts of what to look into first? I'm not sure if this is engine, electrical, or maybe carbs. The old plugs I pulled out where really black and still a little wet from the short ride the day before if that helps.
 

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Old Truck Junkie
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4,133 Posts
Pour in some sea foam and adjust idle with idle adj. knob on left side under fuel tank. Ride hard for some miles and see if it helps.
 

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Put music to our troubles
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15 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Pour in some sea foam and adjust idle with idle adj. knob on left side under fuel tank. Ride hard for some miles and see if it helps.
Any excuse to ride is good to me. I just thought it was odd that the cycle runs better when "cold" at 60°F than after an hour of warm up time. Oh, and the choke is completely off the whole time.
 

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^ Alright, I'll bite: how the hell did I just post nothing? I didn't think that was possible.

Anyway, to reiterate: Glad you got out brother. If you're looking for a riding buddy, hit me up ([email protected]). Nockamixon is about a half hour from me and you're right, it's some damn good riding...
 

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Member? ... check.
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515 Posts
The ride was great (I could actually notice a difference from the short trips with the old plugs and stale gas). The only thing I noticed was that at the end of the trip (about 50 miles in) I was stalling at the stop signs / traffic lights. The tach was reading about 500 rpms at idle, but at the start of the trip it was around 1500rpms at idle. No backfires of pops, just really low idle. Maybe this isn't the right forum section, but any thoughts of what to look into first? I'm not sure if this is engine, electrical, or maybe carbs. The old plugs I pulled out where really black and still a little wet from the short ride the day before if that helps.
I would check those iridiums after your ride again, see if they still show wet. Might be that you are running rich.

Have the fuel mixture plugs been removed from the carbs? Could be that they have been played with. Most folks think that 2~2.5 turns out on the mixture screws are good for a stock aspirated and jetted set of carbs.

Check mixture first, then bring that idle up when warmed up if you find you have been rich.

Nice to get in the wind, isn't it. :smiley_th
 

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The tach was reading about 500 rpms at idle, but at the start of the trip it was around 1500rpms at idle.
Happens to me too. I usually chalk it up to a bad batch of gas. Seafoam might be at work too. Next tank of gas should tell the whole story.
 

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Put music to our troubles
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15 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
I would check those iridiums after your ride again, see if they still show wet. Might be that you are running rich.

Have the fuel mixture plugs been removed from the carbs? Could be that they have been played with. Most folks think that 2~2.5 turns out on the mixture screws are good for a stock aspirated and jetted set of carbs.

Check mixture first, then bring that idle up when warmed up if you find you have been rich.

Nice to get in the wind, isn't it. :smiley_th
I guess I need to face that fact that I need to get my hands dirty and take apart those carbs and give them a nice cleaning. It will give me a chance to see if the jets are still in good shape. The woman (yes, I did buy a girls bike) I bought it from had it sit for most of the season, so I'm sure its all gummed up.

Anyway, to reiterate: Glad you got out brother. If you're looking for a riding buddy, hit me up ([email protected]). Nockamixon is about a half hour from me and you're right, it's some damn good riding...
My last riding buddy moved to DC (also a Vulcan owner), so I would enjoy the company. My wife used to come on the trips, but now that we have the kids she stays home with them.
 
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