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Discussion Starter #1
What's the deal with these bikes? My local Kaw dealer said no problem looking it over and cleaning the carbs....till I told them it was a 1987 Vulcan 750....now... it's a 'Vintage' bike, we don't work on those. A local guy who works metric bikes from his garage.....easy fix, what kind of bike? 87 Vulcan 750.....ummm, I'm really behind, I won't have time to fix it. Another highly recommended mechanic 30 miles away....when can you bring it in and what kind of bike.....750 Vulcan....I could hear the crickets in the background. I'll fix it...but, do you mind leaving it for awhile? Geez!!!!

My main question....how do I tie this bike down. I'm going to use a tilting mower trailer. Do I put it up on the center stand? Kick stand? Tie to the forks? Handle bars? Take the seat off and use the frame? Any suggestions please....
 

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Most dealers around here won't work on or even sell parts for a bike over 10 years old, which now includes mine. I can still get the parts if i tell them it is for a 2006. Same parts.

Most independent shops here will work on anything, and their labor rates are about $30 an hour less than a dealer, but they will tell you up front that because it is an older bike, they may run into unknown problems when they start working on it. if it looks like it might cost more than the bike is worth, they will want payment up front. They've been stung before by doing $2000 worth of work/parts on a $1000 bike, and then have the owner decide they don't want it anymore. That is the main excuse the dealers use.

Fortunately all the parts are still available for an '87, due to a really long production run, and pretty much anything but the engine itself can be worked on by a do it yourselfer. While I'm sure you can find someone to clean your carbs, it will not be cheap. Get a manual, and with help from here, it should be a fairly easy job.

When tying a bike down, it should be on it's wheels with the sidestand up. Tie it from both sides with strong ratcheting tie downs, so it won't budge in either direction. The suspension should be compressed some. You can also wrap something around the front brake lever/handlebar to function as a parking brake.
 

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Yep...what Wmsonta said...front wheel in the corner, its locked in....sidestand....tie it down in front (wheel), then from just behind the tank, pushing down on the sidestand.....should do it unless yer Bo Duke, lol...

...but dont EVER bring yer bike to a dealer....find a small custom shop...they treat ya better because they need the biz, cheaper, and the ones here anyway have worked on bikes forever, so wont bat an eye....some might even nix the newer stuff due to the fancy electrics (many are old timers like me)....but once yer "in" with em, they treat ya good too....Im proof of that with parts Ive gotten at a local shop....hell, Ive even traded venison for bike parts....
 

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I had a local independent shop here tell me flat out he wouldn't work on my carbs unless I took them out... and I hadn't even asked him to. I was just there picking up a couple parts. Because of the PITA these carbs can be... I suspect a lot of shops will make up excuses not to touch them.
 

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Pita removing carbs

I haven't removed mine yet but, doesnt look like it would be too bad removing the carbs. I plan to do just that when it gets colder. Now excuse me while i open a thread on adjusting the damn clutch.
 

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I haven't removed mine yet but, doesnt look like it would be too bad removing the carbs.
Right, its not that bad after you've done it several times. Good luck with the 1st time!
 

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I strapped my vulcan in a moving van once, I will never do again! I had the kick stand down and it ruined the kick stand. Some 'friends' advise on how to tie it in. Had to replace the kickstand it was so bent! When I moved again I rode the bike to the new destination, much better...
 

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I strapped my vulcan in a moving van once, I will never do again! I had the kick stand down and it ruined the kick stand. Some 'friends' advise on how to tie it in. Had to replace the kickstand it was so bent! When I moved again I rode the bike to the new destination, much better...
Always keep the stands up, and the bike on the wheels, with it tied down tight enough to compress the suspension. Your lucky it didn't bend the frame, or break off the welded on bracket that the stand bolts to. I bought a used Suzuki like that once. Had to use the centerstand all the time, because the sidestand bracket had broken right off the frame. I wouldn't recommend trying to put it in the back of a pickup, unless you have a loading ramp you can back up to. I've hauled a lot of dirt bikes in a pickup, but they were small and light. I've seen a lot of Youtube videos of people dropping bikes while trying to either ride them or push them up a steep ramp into a truck bed. I would use a really low trailer.

I have no idea why a professional mechanic would be afraid of removing the carbs. It's not that hard when done right, but it is time consuming. Maybe they are afraid you won't like the labor charge.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Got her back today. Used a low tilt trailer. Two straps in the handlebars and one across the seat at the back. No kickstand, and forks and shocks compressed as best we could. $300 and she runs great. Said there was SO much wrong with the carbs and vacuum hoses, he was surprised it ran at all. I'm happy, now I get to ride again!! Now it just needs to stop raining for awhile. Thanks for all the replies and suggestions.
 

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I had a local independent shop here tell me flat out he wouldn't work on my carbs unless I took them out... and I hadn't even asked him to. I was just there picking up a couple parts. Because of the PITA these carbs can be... I suspect a lot of shops will make up excuses not to touch them.
And if you do that I wouldn't walk them into a local shop that does maybe 2 a year. I'd (and did ) send them to Steve Reed out in WV who is a world renowned and factory trained Kawi carb expert. $100 and all the California gum was cleaned out and they're great for another 10 years.

-Robert
 

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I've heard my less mechanically inclined friends mention that, around here, most independent car shops also don't work on cars over 10 years old. I suspect that the reason is that they're making money on easy jobs (oil changes, maybe a water pump or alternator, valve cover gasket, etc). They're too lazy to deal with the gremlins that you can see in older vehicles (tracking down sensors, soldering bad connectors, etc).

-Robert
 
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