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Discussion Starter #1
The Zen Mistress got a little anxious, and I decided to put the exhaust on tonight, and start up Orleans. Pulled the battery off of my running bike, and used that - 'cause when I read the instructions on the new MF Die-Hard, they said I'd have to wait at least an hour....

Wouldn't have mattered. I got lights, I got "zee-ow zee-ow zee-ow" when I hit the starter button, but the engine wouldn't turn over. Almost did once, but then I could smell that I'd flooded the carbs and so decided to quit for the evening.

I checked that all the wires that I could see - which, given that Orleans is pretty naked at the moment means I checked all my wires; plugs appear tight and the wires good; all air hoses nicely clamped and where they were supposed to be; known good battery (took it off Orleans and put it back on the '92, which cranked right up)... what else do I need to check? If I'm getting fuel flow, then I've got a vacuum, right?

"Oooooommmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm?" said the Zen Mistress.
 

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and the Adventure Cycle
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Hmm, do you know you're getting spark at the plugs?
 

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Cindy -

Check coil leads, not plug wires out of them, check your pickup coil connection, then check for spark at the plugs.

Wasn't this the bike with the carb problem around the starter plungers?

Sure its flooding and not having another problem to do with the starter plungers?
You said it didn't even turn over yet somehow may have flodded it? Doesn't make sense.

Let us know.

Jon
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Cindy -

Check coil leads, not plug wires out of them, check your pickup coil connection, then check for spark at the plugs.

Wasn't this the bike with the carb problem around the starter plungers?

Sure its flooding and not having another problem to do with the starter plungers?
You said it didn't even turn over yet somehow may have flodded it? Doesn't make sense.

Let us know.

Jon
I'll go back and check all of the above - but by "check," you mean visual inspection, right? Nothing I can do with my multimeter to check?

This bike had the ACCT problem when I bought it; and an oil leak around the head gasket on the front cyl. The issue with the starter plungers was in my re-assembly and trying to get the rod back on. I triple-checked that the rod was moving the starter plungers okay before I put the carbs back on'; and when I closed the choke tonight, the plungers moved smoothly .

I guess the sound it was making was when an engine's trying to start, but you don't get the "kick" - "zee-ow zee-ow zee-ow", ya know? Keeps trying, and you realize you're wearing down your battery and not getting anywhere. And I'm ascertaining flooding by the fact that after several attempts, I smelled gasoline.

Hyper, remind me how to check for spark at the plugs? I had a broken lawnmower over the summer and my neighbor kept "trying to check for spark at the plug," but we never got anything so I wasn't sure he was doing it right. And now I've forgotten entirely what he was doing.
 

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and the Adventure Cycle
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Well, there are a couple of ways to check for spark.
One is to remove one plug at a time, connect it to the plug wire, let it ground against the engine (might need to hold it in place with a piece of tape) and hit the start button. You should see spark at the electrode. Put that plug back in the try another, until you've done them all.
(don't hold onto the plug wire with your hand while doing this)

There are also in line spark indicators which you attach between the plug & plug wire and they have a light which indicates spark. (like a circuit tester light). Not sure if they'd work with the deeper plug wells we have though.
 

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HAWK
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Did it sound like the motor was spinning fast and didn't want to catch. If so that is a sign of being out of time. Hope that is not the case.
If the motor was not turning over you can't have vacume and you might have a bad petcock valve.
Hope this helps.
 

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and the Adventure Cycle
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Sounds to me like it was turning over, just not firing.
My guess is it's not getting spark for some reason.
 

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Just pull the plug wire and insert a #2 phillips(in wire), hold the metal part(screwdriver) close to ground (any metal on the engine) and crank, Blue or white spark equals good spark , yellow or no spark is a problem and requires further trouble shooting. ? If blue or white and at least 1/4" long means either fouled plugs or possible timeing problem.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks, Guys. I'll do a visual check on the pickup coils this a.m, and then check the plugs. (I think I'll use the tape idea, however - ya know, me, electricity.... not a good combo).

The engine wasn't turning over fast - it was as if I were on my regular, running bike, but the engine just wouldn't catch. So I guess the timing isn't the issue. Say again, though, I can't have vacuum if...? (I can work out some of the possibilities - if I have no fuel in the float bowls, no vacuum; if I have no fuel in the lines, really no vacuum; and if I have no vacuum, then the culprit lies anywhere between the air filter boxes and the vacuum hookups to the carbs...are the odds higher in any particular region?).

Thanks!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Getting there!!

Alright -the first culprit appears to have been a spark plug that wasn't screwed in tightly enough. I fixed that one and then checked the others, just to be sure. Turned the key, and it did turn over for a moment :beerchug: - "sputt, sputt, sputt"...."pshew." Did that twice, and then wouldn't catch. Drained the float bowls - both of 'em had fuel in 'em, so there is gasoline going to the carbs (at least when using the choke). All the linkages from the pickup coils look good.

Sooooooo, it did turn over but couldn't hold on. Possible vacuum problem sustaining fuel to the carbs? Anybody? :confused:
 

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Alright -the first culprit appears to have been a spark plug that wasn't screwed in tightly enough. I fixed that one and then checked the others, just to be sure. Turned the key, and it did turn over for a moment :beerchug: - "sputt, sputt, sputt"...."pshew." Did that twice, and then wouldn't catch. Drained the float bowls - both of 'em had fuel in 'em, so there is gasoline going to the carbs (at least when using the choke). All the linkages from the pickup coils look good.

Sooooooo, it did turn over but couldn't hold on. Possible vacuum problem sustaining fuel to the carbs? Anybody? :confused:
Cindy -

Did you verify that the plugs are firing?
Absolute first step. No fire, no start.

Use Hyper's method since you are a little electric shy.

Jon
 

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and the Adventure Cycle
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It wouldn't hurt to add that ya want to make sure the threaded part of the plug is what's contacting the motor. And, ya want to make sure it isn't a painted part you're grounding against.

If ya smelled gas when ya first tried (as in a flooded condition), I'd say it certainly seems like you've got vacuum and fuel getting to the carbs. :smiley_th
Are you sure there's plenty of air getting to the carbs? Are the filters clean? (and not too much oil on them):smiley_th

If so, then it's gotta be spark related (Just a hypothesis, not to be quoted ! ;) I'll deny it all !)

If ya feel ambitious (or would it be daring?) enough, ya could try swapping known good electrical parts back & forth.
I'd try to save that for last if nothing else reveals itself first.

One last thought, are ya sure the carb boots (all 4) are in good condition?

Here's to hoping for an easy fix :pepper:


EDIT: Just to be sure we're all on the same page, the bike was running when you got it, right?
 

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Discussion Starter #13
OOps, no, I didn't...I just figured that the one had been loose. BAck to step one - but the new MF battery is charging at present, so I'll have to wait just a little while. But I've plenty of electrical tape, so I'm ready to look for sparks!
 

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Registered
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Just be carefull when you are testing for spark if you flooded the engine it could ignite and cause a fire.Check the timing the engine should have fired right up.Also if it is flooding the floats should be looked at.Check it over carefully.Remember ZEN...............
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Zen wins!

Carl Manning Jr. emailed me and said "check the sync on the carbs." What the--? It won't run - how do I sync it? He said to turn the sync screw out around 2 1/2 to 3 turns, and go from there. So, I bottomed out the screw, and then backed it out 2 1/2 turns. THen I checked, and I did indeed have spark at all four plugs. So, I tried firing her up again. ALmost caught. Turned the sync screw out to 2 3/4 - caught, ran, stopped. Kept going until - vroom! - she started!! And kept running!! Until I realized I was spewing water out of a radiator hose (fortunately JUST water, 'cause I was still testing connections), so I turned it off.

But, to quote Jon (93VN750), "It's alive!!" :beerchug: :D :pepper:
 

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Great work Cindy, that zen patience is paying off! :smiley_th
 

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Discussion Starter #18
"There is no "i" in team!" This Forum is fabulous - I'd never have even thought about tinkering without the support of everyone. And I have to say - given that my day job is mostly research and reports that no one ever reads - it is soooo cool to do something that has a tangible result!

Thanks, Everyone! Once I've got the engine smoothed out, I'll get to find out how well the transmission really works. :D
 

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and the Adventure Cycle
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Way to go Cindy !!!


Crobins365 said:
Until I realized I was spewing water....
If that happened, ya may be getting a little too excited about it !! LOL

Glad to hear ya got things going ! :beerchug:
Happy dance time !!
 
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