Friday, October 28, 2011

Virago XV750 for sale.

I bought an early (monoshock!) Virago a couple months ago on a whim. I'm just now realizing that with 2 friends waiting on me to finish their bikes, plus 3 CB750's and 3 Goldwings of my own to attend to, I probably won't get around to it any time soon.

New starter motor.

Sold it 4 hours after listing.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Still no progress - GL1000

So the carburetors are still giving me problems.
After the bike has warmed up the idle will occasionally surge up to 3000 RPMs again and then come back down after a second or two.

I took a video to see if anyone has encountered this before and can help me identify the problem.
Please comment if you have any suggestions.

Note: I did not touch the throttle in this video.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Slide slide slippity-slide

So polishing up the slides that were on the '76 carbs didn't work out so well. I still have surging RPM's off-idle. Frustrated, I said fuck it and scrapped them altogether.

But I do have an ace up my sleeve.
I just pulled these beauties off a (for parts) set of 755A carbs.
See that scallop cut in the bottom of these? Yea that means they're more badass than the flat bottomed girls I yanked out. It also means they'll allow for more airflow, particularly at full throttle.

The best part about these is they're a complete set of matching tops and slides with no damage or scrapes.
They were a bit dirty though.

...and after 5 hours of polishing: (my forearms look like Popeye's)

The needles buffed out nicely.
I really hope these do the trick. I've been on a wild goose chase for about a week now hunting down one problem after another with this bike. This past weekend alone I've had the carbs on and off the bike 5 times.

The bike starts and idles fine, but still seems a bit slow to decrease RPM's.
I'm going to set the timing dynamicallty, then try and sync the carbs as best I can and see if that makes a difference. 
I already swapped the #115 slow air jets for #110's. It was quirky at first but eventually I got the idle adjusted and now it idles strong.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Two steps forward, two steps back.

Perhaps I was a bit optomistic about this past weekend. Things didn't work out quite like I planned.
Instead of going to see Deep River on Saturday and take the Fall Foliage ride to Graves Mountain on Sunday, I spent the entirety of my weekend sorting out carb problems.

 I installed new spark plugs and plug caps,
and put the rest of the bike back together; radiator, fan etc...

Then finished rebuilding the GL1000's carbs (for the first time).


The carbs were mounted on the bike, primed, and ready.
However, when I tried to start the bike I got a quick "put-put-put," like it was going to fire, and then nothing. I tried again, and the bike SPEWED fuel out the right exhaust all over the garage.

Apparently the Clymer's manual was very wrong about the procedure for setting the float height.
The proper way to do it isn't from the gasket surface, or the gasket. Instead, measure the float height from the lip around the edge of the gasket.

So, I removed the carburetors, re-adjusted the floats, remounted them and tried to start the bike.
The correct orientation for setting float height.

Still no luck. So I ran the handy-dandy troubleshooting checklist: Spark, Fuel, Compression.
Well, cylinders 3&4 had no spark. Luckily it turned out to just be a loose wire.

At this point it was late, and I didn't want to piss off the neighbors by starting the bike
So,I decided to call it a night and try my luck in the morning.

I woke up, threw on some pants and, like a kid on christmas, dashed for the garage.
I hit the starter button and after a minute or so of struggling she fired a little bit.

She was having trouble starting and running so I decided to pull the carbs again to double check everything and bench sync them.

Draining float bowls again.

Double checking float heights.

The floats were all set perfectly, all the passages were clear but got blown out with compressed air anyway.
I syncronised them using a guitar string and threw them back on the bike.

Once mounted, I hit the starter button and she fired right up without hesitation!

But then, I gave it just a touch of throttle and the engine RPM's surged to 3000 and stayed there even after I let off the throttle. After a few more attempts and adjustments I couldn't fix the problem.

When I rebuilt the carbs I swapped out the slow air jets for smaller ones to enrich the idle and off-idle mix
so that the bike wouldn't have a flat spot and stumble when moving from a stop.

Hoping that this was part of my problem I decided to swap the jets out, but I thought,
"I'll be damned if I'm taking those carbs off again."

The slow air jets are pretty hard to access with the carbs still on the bike, but I had just the right tool for the job:
This photo was surprisingly hard to take.
Slow air jet removed...
...from here

Unfortunately this didn't fix the problem, so I guess I'm damned.

The only other thing I could think that might have caused the surging RPM's would perhaps be sticking slides. I pulled the carbs again, hopefully for the final time, and polished the carb slides, tops,
and bores with some 0000 Steel wool.

Only the finest for polishing my carbs!

I think this box is older than I am.
Before. Notice the scuffs.
After polishing.
I also polished the inside of the tops.
I reassembled everything Sunday night and hopefully with some luck we'll find out if this fixed it tomorrow!

...and by request I present to you, friggin' spiders:

I think he was sick of the paparazzi and decided to take his meal elsewhere.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Graves Mountain Ride Sunday!

There's a group ride from Manassas Honda to Graves Mountain and back this Sunday.

Hopefully, I can get the Goldwing running in time to make it. There's going to be a sad truck following just in case someone (probably me) brakes down.

From MHKS' website
"Join us this Sunday Oct. 16th. as we ride to Graves Mountain Apple Festival.
Ride departs Manassas Honda Kawasaki Suzuki at 10:30
Riders meeting at 10:00, Approx. 90 minutes to Graves Mountain"
I'll be working tirelessly for the next couple days to prep the bike.

Choke linkages all hooked up.
It looks like they're holding hands, awwwww.

The needles polished up pretty nice.
I may shim them just a tad to enrich the air to fuel mix,
since I'm sticking with stock jets for now.

Last night I made some more progress with the carbs. The bodies, linkaged and manifold are all back together, although not pictured. Now all I have to do is put the little stuff (jets, needles, gaskets, etc..) back in and sync them.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Carburetors EVERYWHERE!

It seems that I've seen a lot of sets of carburetors come and go lately. I think at any given time I have at least a dozen sets lying around.
Off the top of my head I think I've got

  • 3 complete sets of  '75 GL1000 carbs
  • a set of '78 GL1000 carbs
  • and a set of '76 GL1000 carbs plus a box of random parts/bodies.
  • 2 or 3 sets of early CB750 carbs plus a few boxes full of spare parts/bodies
  • a couple sets of later (PD42 A and B) CB750 carbs
  • 2 sets of XS650 carbs
  • a set of Keihin CR29's
  • A set of CB400 carbs
  • oops I forgot one; another set of PD42 B's (Elrich's F2 carbs)
  • I'm sure there's more I just can't remember.

I like to do multiple sets of carbs at once. That way I'm not wasting chemicals when I use my ultrasonic cleaner. I can just reuse the cleaner several times in a row on different sets of carbs. Because of this approach, sometimes the workbench can get a bit cluttered. Here's a little taste of my carburetor chaos.

I was given a couple sets of CB900 C carbs to build a single good set out of. I tore into them and discovered that all one of the sets really needed was new gaskets, an accelerator pump diaphragm, and a float hinge pin.
So now they're sitting off to the side waiting for parts to arrive in the mail.

This box makes it easy to keep everything organized.
In the meantime, I'll be rebuilding a set of '76 GL1000 carbs (Keihin 758 A's) So I can get my Goldwing ready for the Graves Mountain ride next weekend. These suckers are huge, there's a freakin' TON of parts and they are currently occupying my workbench in it's entirety.

Oh... just a couple spare sets laying around.

Yes the Goldwing has only 4 cylinders,
I pulled a couple spare carbs to scavenge for parts.
Like I said, this thing REALLY comes in handy.