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Author Topic: How to Kick-Start a Royal Enfield  (Read 2940 times)

Kevin Mahoney

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How to Kick-Start a Royal Enfield
« on: November 01, 2007, 11:43:21 pm »
Starting the Royal Enfield Motorcycle

1.Make certain that the "kill" switch is in the "on" or "run" position. This switch is located by the throttle, on the right side of the bike.
2.Turn the fuel tap to the "on position". Make sure that there is plenty of fuel in the tank. When the arm of the fuel tap is pointing toward the ground it is on. When it is horizontal it is in the "off" position. When the arm points upward it is in the "reserve" position.
3. If the engine is cold, push down on the gold colored choke lever. It is located on the right side of the bike about where your knee is.
4. Engage the compression release. This is the lever on the underside of the left hand handlebar switches. It is engaged by pushing it forward.
5. With the compression release engaged, kick the bike through 3 times. This "primes" the engine.
6. Turn the ignition switch on by turning the key to the right.
7. With the switch turned on, choke on, the throttle closed, and the compression release engaged, gently move the kick start lever and note the movement of the ammeter gauge. It will deflect to the left and then come back to the center. As you slowly turn the engine over, watch for the ammeter to deflect to the left. Now move it a little more until it just comes back to the middle. This middle position means that the piston is poised exactly where it should be for starting.
8. Now the moment of truth. Release the compression release lever and kick the bike through. When kicking, strength is not the key. A small woman can start the bike with the correct technique. The key is a long kick with good follow through. Kick it until the top of your shoe hits the foot peg. 9 times out of 10,the bike will start in the last 3" of movement.
9. If the engine is hot from being very recently run, you can omit steps 3, 4, and,5 .
10. If the bike doesn't start, repeat steps 7 and 8. (If bike is "hot" do not use the choke, if it is just "warm " you may need it) You MUST position the piston properly through the use of the ammeter. A natural inclination (especially if people are watching you) is to start kicking blindly without using steps 7 and 8. This is a route to total frustration and a complete loss of your manhood.( or womanhood ).

If the bike doesn't start after 3-4 kicks
I use a rule of 4, that is, if it doesn't start after four kicks, (adhering tightly to the steps above) then do something different. If it doesn't start in four kicks, then put the choke in the "off" or up position and try another 4 kicks. If that doesn't work, open the throttle all the way, choke on, and try it. Then if it still doesn't start, try throttle full open, choke off. This usually does it.
Best Regards,
Kevin Mahoney
Classic Motorworks


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  • Mike and Stumpy
Re: How to Kick-Start a Royal Enfield
« Reply #1 on: November 02, 2007, 07:57:18 am »
With Stumpy, my '07 Classic, I found it best to ease the piston past TDC with the switch off.  It helps preserve the "prime" I think.  Just have to listen for the hiss of air from the exhaust port/decomp.  Also found if I use any throttle with the initial starting stroke, it usually won't fire.  During the summer months, I never use the enrichment lever - just won't go.   Now that its getting cold, about half-way on the lever is working fine...

Only time I had a bit of panic is when after several tries with steps 5-9 with no fire, I went back to step 1...

Mike and Stumpy in Michigan
'07 Classic - Stumpy
'10 C5 Military - Sherman


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Re: How to Kick-Start a Royal Enfield
« Reply #2 on: January 23, 2008, 04:42:46 pm »
great thread!

I'm lucky I was raised with kickers-  cause the fun times I have watching my friends try to start my SR... priceless! lol

This will definitely help me with my upcoming project.