Sunday, October 03, 2010

Tossing In The Towel

(UPDATE: After watching Willy and Dave's video I was inspired to go out at night and yank my bad starter off the bike. Damn you two.)

I was going on a nice long ride yesterday. Did some things around the house and replaced my sons heater hoses on his car. I should say; my wife and I replaced the heater hoses on our sons car. Yes, she likes getting dirty and working on our vehicles and she's pretty good at it to. Over the years she has watched; learned and jumped in to help - and she always asks questions though sometimes to many. I have to take one task at a time and while doing so she will be finding other non-related to the task at hand items to be looked at. This is when I say "Let's get this done before going to something else on the car that needs attention please."
But she is a great help and when I'm at wits end she pulls me back before I loose my temper.
So after WE were done with the car I was free to go for a ride. Go grab my jacket, put on my boots, grab my goggles and helmet, then out to the bike. I wheel her out and start her up. Settles to a nice idle - a little rich but she's cold still - as I walk around checking things over and wiping her down here and there. Put on my gear, clunk into first and take her around the block a few times. All seems well as I head out for the back country. Pulling great and running strong. I begin to settle myself just right in the seat, look at the speedometer and notice it's not working. Oh well, screw it I'm riding. Head on down the road enjoying the weather and light traffic then...and happens. Rat bastard starts to stumble some, then starts to bucking like shes running out of gas. But I know she's almost full because I put in two gallons in the three gallon tank. I know she is running to rich as I try to adjust the carb while cruising.
I see a church ahead so I pull in the empty lot, make a u-turn and head back towards the house. Rat B is surging and jumping pretty bad now. Almost home making the turn a block away and she quit's. Kaput.

I fiddle with the low speed needle and she won't fire. I keep trying to start her but she ain't havin none of it. I smell gas and sitting on the curb I see drip, drip from the aircleaner. I tried to crank so much I flooded her out. Damn. I push her home and the last leg is an up hill incline. As I reach my driveway, huffing and puffing my wife comes out of the house at a fast pace. I think she was worried I was hurt. So seeing I'm not she asks "Why are you pushing the bike?" in a sweet concerned tone. I give her a look from under the helmet while trying to catch my breath and it's a good thing to because my answer probably would not have been a good one at that moment. I'm glad I was out of breath because I got to keep my teeth. She has Scotch/Irish in the blood need I say more.

I take off my jacket and sling it over the seat, take off the helmet and drop it on the ground then explain between breathing that is returning to normal. She calms me down and says to go inside and get a drink. I do then come back out. Now my neighbor comes over with his smart assed comments as I head to the shop to get some tools. As I walk away I flip him the one finger salute. Returning, he's making remarks again between pulls on his beer as I pull the plugs. My wife is talking to him now and I try to ignore him and wishing he would go back across the street. I don't need any smart ass comments at the moment. Offers of help perhaps if ya know what the hell your talking about,even a little. He keeps blathering on so I finally stand up, point to the bike and say "Here then, you fix it.!" as I hold out the wrench to him. He stands back with a look and says he don't no shit about working on a Harley.

After a few more minutes his wife comes over and hands him the leash with their pitbull on the other end. The dog is a sweet heart and is loving all over me as I pat her on the back. The neighbor goes to his yard to let the dog do her business and his wife takes his beer. She and my wife are talking and then another neighbor drives by slow saying it will never run. I don't even look around and he drives off.

Long story short, I adjust and readjust on the carb beginning at the beginning each time. She won't fire for nothing and the battery runs down. Finally disgusted I shove Rat Bastard in the garage, hook up the battery charger, gather the rest of my pride and head inside. So today I go out and all I get is a stinking click, click, click from the starter. Check the battery with my ohm meter and she has a full charge. I take a rubber hammer and smack the starter housing a few times and she tries to crank over but then nothing but click, click, click again.

I'm tired and throw in the towel. I ain't messing with her anymore. So next week I'll borrow a trailer and take her to the Indie and let him figure it out. I admit defeat. It's alright, it's only money.


Big Daddy said...

drop the bowl and check the float needle and seat....chances are you just shook some debris loose.....clean it out..add a inline filter and you should be good to go..

Willy D said...

Yep, what Big D said. But you should also check the thermostatic diode in the flux capacitor in-line drive motor. Hey, it could be stuck.

As for the starter, well, short of me coming out there and taking a crowbar to it, which ain’t in the cards right now, I’ll give you the best advise I can:

You’re more than capable of doing anything to your bike. Get the factory manual; it’s got everything you need. Ask ‘lots’ of questions. Be patience; don’t try to rush a repair. You overlook things. Hell, I overlooked a bolt on Dave’s primary. Should’ve taken a crowbar to it.

BTW – You’ve got a great wife there.

FLHX_Dave said...

Yeah...what BigD said...yeah.

Dude! I was holding back the tears as I read along. You have a good wife man! You neighbors though...tell'em I said they could kiss your ass.

So...are you blaming this on Willy
D and I?!? lol...carbs...been years since I have had to even look at one. Starter? I thought it was common for Hogs to be equipped with sub-standard cranking power.'s only money.

WooleyBugger said...

Big D,
I went out to do your suggestion then decided to try adjusting the low speed needle again, ya know, for shits and giggles. I figured one more shot as it as the carb is new & getting plenty of fuel and I had flooded it Saturday. The inline filter though is something I need to get as you suggested. I took the information from one book and information from the papers that came with carb and set it in the middle. Gapped and installed yet another set of new plugs. No choke, gas off, key on, rocker on, two squirts, hit start button and vvvrrrroooommmm. She fired right off and idled a smidge high but Ilet her warm a little then set idle. Cut gas on and waited for warm up. rear pipe warm, front pipe cold.
I think the front wire may not be seated good in coil as I might have pulled it partly out when changing the plugs. Will check that tomorrow.

Willy, I took a crowbar to the thermostatic diode in the flux capacitor in-line drive motor. Guess what. It needed more banana peel so I smoked one to be sure it was still good before re-installation of a $200 new one. It cranks with plenty of power, guess that old original one with the worn teeth was pulling small amperage.
I don't know why this motorcycle gives me such fits. I've torn several apart and put them back together and hell, back then I didn't know what the hell I was doing but I had a brother to get me over the rough spots. I took an engine course for gods sake and have rebuilt car engines no problemo. I must be getting oldtimers decease or sumthin.
Thanks for the pep.
As for the wife, yeppers she's a good one, Hasn't given up on me yet. It's a full time job.

Dave, Holding back tears of laughter I bet. I have a good wife for sure and she has my back. She's a fiery one she is and I always feel sorry for others on the receiving end. She don't take no chit and she's a little thing.
She and her friend were laughing about we husband type folks. She said they know it's not funny to either of us when the bikes are down but still, the visions is to them.
I'll tell my neighbor your coming to take his beer away. It's ok as I'll have the last laugh when I'm riding away while he watches in envy from his porch.

Yep. I'm blaming this on you both because after watching your video I just had to go out and give it another shot hoping to find a naked wench on my bike.
Yep Harleys come standard with substandard cranking power. Even my old kick only had substandard starting power.

But really thanks a bunch you three...stooges. Ya fired me up to go to it again. All I have to do is track down why the front cylinder is not firing but I suspect the plug wire at the coil.

WooleyBugger said...
This comment has been removed by the author.