February 2011 17
I have a 1982 Kawasaki KZ440 and I tore the whole stock wiring harness off of it and everything is wired up except the coil. I just can’t get it right for some reason. Any idea how it can be done?
I’m a little confused as to your problem. Are you missing wires? Do you not know how to connect the coil? Is the bike connected properly but not running? With such limited information I can only recommend you take a close look at the wiring diagram for your bike. Here it is:
sorry about the vagueness i’m wiring it from scratch with as little wire as possible, i chopped the bike up into a little bobber and i just dont really know how to wire it up i guess all the wires are good and it had great spark before i took the wiring harness off. i’ve looked at your simple wiring diagrams and got everything else to work but the coil i just need to know what wire goes where.
This diagram should solve your issue. The one I posted above was for an older KZ440 with a points ignition, but the 1982 has an electronic ignition.
Just connect the coil to the power source and the IC Ignitor as shown in this diagram and you’ll be all set.
alright man thanks for the help i’ll give it a shot. sounds pretty simple
Where can I buy the “safety decal” for the headlight stay of the Yamaha BW 200 and BW 350? I call it the “safety decal” but this business card size metallic decal tells the tire pressure/oil to use etc. I saw these decals on a website several weeks ago; but did not record the phone number.
I’m not entirely sure what the proper word is for those either. I would call them a VIN plate or VIN plaque.
I’m also not sure why you would want to replace one, as you’d have to print or engrave the VIN number onto it manually. I think you’ll have a hell of a hard time finding one specific to the Yamaha Big Wheels. Probably best just finding someone selling a used frame on ebay and asking them to break it off for you.
David Silver’s Spares comes to mind as a place that might carry VIN tag reproductions, but I doubt they have anything specific to the BW200 or BW350.
You don’t need one.
Hey Evan, thanks for all the great tips. I’m cleaning out the carbs on a 1974 Honda CB350F. I boiled the carb body, jets, and all the other metal components. Im trying to blow through the slow jets but cannot. Ive tried to push through a tiny metal wire, also cannot. Is this the way its supposed to be, or am I doing something incorrectly? Thanks
Pilot jets are ALWAYS the hardest things to clean out. They’re also the jets most likely to get clogged.
On a bike like the CB350F the pilot jets are tiny, making it even harder. Sometimes it just takes a lot of time and effort to get them clean. Let them soak long and hard in carb cleaner. Boil them repeatedly. Keep trying to push wires through them. Blow through them with air. Hold them over a lighter and try to burn it out. Use a combination of everything, it’s a giant PITA sometimes.
If you decide you want to give up just take those jets down to your local dealer, and if they’re any good, they’ll have some replacements in stock. Though they’ll charge you HUGE for them. They can be ordered online for about $3 a pop. A dealer will charge 5x that sometimes.
Best of luck! Don’t give up!
Awesome website, I really enjoy reading it!
I’m a new rider, and I’m looking to purchase my first bike. I’ve been looking at a Honda CX500, but I was wondering if you could recommend some other beginner models. I’m looking for a standard style bike, under $1,000. I’m 5’7″ tall, 160 lbs. I’m not totally new to motorcycles, but i’ve never personally owned a bike.
I’m looking for a model that is:
1) Reliable/ easy to maintain for a new wrencher
2) Be good at city riding, but occasional open highway rides as well
3) Good power, speed and handling
If you could recommend a few models, I’d appreciate it!
Thanks very much!
Wow – this sure is a can of worms!!
I have very strong opinions on what makes a good beginner bike. I suppose in a world full of sport bikes and big egos the CX500 would make a reasonable choice, but I’d encourage you to look at something smaller.
The best platform for learning proficient motorcycle handling skills is an off road bike. Training on an offroad bike in offroad conditions will give you a great understanding of the physics of motorcycling and how the bike will react to different surfaces and under different conditions. It will also allow you to learn how to react in a safe environment where you can practice, fall, and won’t put yourself in danger. Because of this I recommend an enduro style bike like a Yamaha XT225, XT350, or Suzuki DR350.
However, I also recognize that no everyone wants an enduro (why I have no idea ) but in lieu of those bikes I would push you towards a street going twin cylinder bike of 400cc or less. The Yamaha XS400 is a favorite of mine, the Kawasaki KZ400, Honda CB350 and CL350. Those are all excellent starter bikes that are reasonably light weight, have lower seat heights for improved control, and have plenty of power to get you into trouble, but are mellow and fun to ride. Any of those models can be found in good running shape for $1000 or less, but they will require tinkering as they are all older models. (Tinkering is the best part!).
I have a 1985 Virago XV700 with the Hitachi Carbs. Will the boiling in lemon juice thing effect the rubber bushings for the butterfly? Or do I need to remove it first? I cant seem to get all the passage ways open. But cant afford to send it off and have it done.
No you’ll be fine. 212 degrees isn’t enough to damage those rubbers. Just make sure to give the carbs a good thorough rinse as soon as you pull them out of the stew!
As I mentioned the XR isn’t so healthy. Aside from it’s bent axle, oil lines, and the dozen other worn out and broken parts, the motor is also toast. There’s no compression, so I got to tearing it down in a makeshift outdoor garage.
I just inherited a 1982 Seca 550. This is my first bike, ive never ridden nor worked on motorcycles before. I was told all it needed was a fuel petcock and it would run. I got a rebuild kit and cleaned it up, now it doesn’t leak and seems to work just fine. However, I still can’t get the thing started.
As far as I know I’m doing it right, Run switch on, Clutch in, kickstand up, choke on, petcock to prime, fuel in the line, hit start, chuga chuga chuga nothing.
I pulled the air filter out and sprayed some carb cleaner into the intake, it will sort of putter and and run for abuot 2 seconds then die. Only seems to work when I spray the carb cleaner in. I figured then it must be Carbs. Pulled them off the bike.
Opened up the carbs, insides look very clean, no varnish really at all, very minimal in the float bowls and it wiped out right away. I pulled some of the jets and looked through them, don’t seem to be clogged. The float cylinders, not sure what they are called, but they are gold in color and have the needles on them, slide up and down ok, they feel ever so slightly sticky, I pilled off the tops and the rubber gaskets up top look good, pulled out the springs and those gold cylinders and looked inside. no gummy stuff or varnish, does look like there are some wear marks. Put everything back together.
I should note that I checked to see if the carbs were getting fuel by opening up the little drain plugs and plenty of fuel came spilling out.
Um, so I guess the question is, what is the basic check list of things to look at first? Not sure where to start, thought it was the carbs and it would be an easy thing to clean up, but they look good to my amateur eyes. Bike sat for 6 months under a tree. Tank was drained and plugged. Was supposedly running just fine before that aside from the petcock.
I’m waiting on the clymers in the mail, but still tinkering with the bike every day.
Apologies for the long winded explanation but I’m trying to cram in as many details as possible. Any help/advice would be much appreciated!
Hi Will – welcome!
I would bet you still have a carb issue. If you sprayed cleaner into the intakes and the bike sputtered then it follows that the bike is not getting fuel. I believe the Yamaha XJ550 has the same carbs as the XJ750 (please correct me if the pic doesn’t match up to your carbs, it’s from the XJ750 carbs). A very common clogging point in these carbs is actually in the bowl. The choke jet is a long needle like tube that goes down into the bowl. It goes into the hole in the bottom left of this picture (not the bolt hole of course, the one next to it). The bottom of this passageway clogs extremely easy and can be quite a PITA to clean. Pull off a couple of your bowls, drip some fluid down into the hole and see if it comes out at the bottom. I bet it doesn’t.
This is becoming quite the learning experience. So i squirted some carb cleaner in those little holes on the float bowls, and it did drip down and out through the other little holes. For some reason, and I’m regretting it now because it’s 12:30am and my carbs are in pieces, i decided to go ahead and boil the carbs in lemon juice just to clean em up. I figure might as well since i tore them off the bike. That went pretty well, but left a residue of gunk on the insides. I was working on cleaning the extra gunk out with shop towels but had particular trouble getting around those little brass flappers that are held in by two screws. I took one off to see if I could get things a bit cleaner, but I still couldn’t get it as clean as I’d like to. I’m trying now to put the dang thing back, but one screw is being very stubborn. It looks as though the threads have been mangled, though I don’t know how because all I did was take it out. That, plus the odd angle that the screw threads in at, has made this a very frustrating process. I’ve spent a good ten minutes trying to get that thing in without cross-threading it. I’m starting to think I may have to go to the hardware store to find a replacement machine screw, I really really don’t want to cross-thread anything on this.
OK. This is one of those learn the hard way situations. Those screws are peened over and not meant to come out. Makes sense, wouldn’t want one of those screws jiggling loose and flying through the intake. wish I’d known! solution in the works…
After boiling the carbs they need to be rinsed very thoroughly in a bucket of water (or sprayed with a hose) then doused with carb cleaner or wd-40 to displace the water. That will prevent them from being sticky from dried juice residue.
So you’ve confirmed the choke flutes aren’t clogged, you’ve held all 4 pilot jets up to the light and seen through the, and you’ve done the same with the 4 main jets correct? If those 3 passages are clean the bike should start and run. Other passages can certainly effect the running, bit those are the most important.
How old are your spark plugs and what do they look like?
Have you closely inspected your coils and plug caps/wires visually for cracks or crazing?
Ten of my college friends were in town for the week. It was a great time, as it always is. Typical vacation resort type place.
We explored a bit and checked out some cenotes (underwater caves), did some cliff jumping, and toured some of the Mayan ruins.
Re: Carb boiling. Bike’s not been running for along time and the Keihins for a V-4 have heavy deposits. My questions: First, do I need to remove all rubber and plastic pieces off the carb, because that would require separating the four of them? Next, do I maintain the water boiling for the duration? Last, is 20 minutes the recommended boiling time? BTW, I would have posted to the forum but was unable to register. Thanks for your help!
Notes from Reader:
Yes. Pretty much the answer to all your questions. I just got done cleaning out 4 Keihins myself. Although the best thing to do is remove all non metal before boiling, I have gotten away with putting the rubber clad parts into a mesh bowl. Keeps them in the water without allowing them to stick to the hot bottom of the pot. Boil for longer if it doesnt work the first time. And do take them all apart but boil individually. Be methodical and organized. Hope this helps
Well, I would say that breaking apart the rack of carbs isn’t completely necessary. It does always make them a little easier to work on, bit I rarely disassemble the racks unless it’s absolutely needed. You can dunk the whole carbs rubbers and all, though I typically remove the rubber diagrams and slide so the lemon juice can easily flow in and out of the carb bodies.
Just keep your pot simmering and swish around the carbs as best you can. It’s best to do it outdoors on something like a bbq grill because the smell in the house is foul!
I have an old 1976 ironhead Harley Sportster which hasnt been started in 20 years. So I figure I dont have to worry about mixing types or brands of oil. Would you recommend Pennzoil 10w40 for a Harley as well? I would guess you are not a fan but it also appears you have overall motorcycle knowledge in general.
An ironhead will run long and happy with 20w-50 oil. Some people in hotter climates (ie the south) will run a straight 50w or 60w oil to keep it a little thicker because the motors tend to run slightly hot. If I was you I would just grab the nearest 20w-50 and go for a ride!
Hey. Bike me!
I have owned nearly every make and model of vintage Japanese motorcycle as well Europeans and more modern bikes. I do everything from simple fixes to full restorations. I also travel by motorcycle and race off-road. This is a blog about my bikes.
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