Author Topic: Kickstarting advice  (Read 12891 times)

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Kiwichick

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on: November 03, 2007, 08:02:11 pm
My earlierst introduction to REs: when I was a Triumph owner, I remember seeing a cartoon on my parts-guy's workshop wall.

It showed a group of guys, on chairs in a row  in a Doctor's waiting room.  Each of them had their right leg pointing off in some odd direction from the knee down.

Each was wearing a "Royal Enflield Owners Club" teeshirt.


Maybe it is a classic old joke.  Anyway, this cartoon may have subconciously scarred me against kickstarting!

I'd like to know your thoughts on kickstart technique, and in particular, what causes the leaver to kick back (and potentially break your leg, according to the cartoon!) - ie what do I avoid?

Even though I have an Electra (I mentioned in another post, I'm a newbie - I brought her home yesterday!) I'd like to mostly kickstart her.  After all, that looks damned fine!


Thanks
Biddy


RagMan

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Reply #1 on: November 03, 2007, 09:07:08 pm
Don't do anything I did.. I broke my ankle and foot kickstating the Enfield, about 9 weeks ago - I am nearly better, but not yet.
aka Indiana Bulleteer.
''99 Classic Bullet. '05 Ural Tourist sidecar rig, converted to 2wd. '05 Harley Davidson Sportster.
Jefferson County, WA


Tiny Tim

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Reply #2 on: November 03, 2007, 10:05:09 pm
Generally speaking, there are three reasons that an Enfield will kick back at you:

1. you didn't get it past the compression stroke
2. You kicked it with the throttle open
3. The timing is out

If you're sure that the timing's OK, the following method works so well for me, I assure you that I can start mine by hand when she is up in the air in the workshop.

1. with the ignition off, and the petrol on, operate the decompressor and kick over three times
2. Release the decompressor and kick gently until the compression stroke is felt
3. Use the decompressor to enable you to lift the piston just over top dead centre
4. Apply choke if you feel it's necessary
5. switch on
6. one good kick with no throttle, but be ready to catch the engine with the throttle when she fires

WARNING:
the above method is guaranteed not to work if you've just stalled the bike at traffic lights

D'oh!

REgards

TT
REgards

Tiny Tim

"Whilst it isn't possible to polish a turd, you can always roll it in glitter"

2005 Electra AVL


Kiwichick

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Reply #3 on: November 03, 2007, 11:57:48 pm
Thanks - that sounds great.  But just before I start, is there a way you can find the words to describe "until the decompression stroke is felt" and "lifting the piston just over top dead centre"? 

I think that's what I'm doing (without trying to actually start it yet!) but getting a sense of what that FEELS like - maybe just experience - but an experience I'd rather have without broken ankle! 

Thanks
Biddy


RagMan

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Reply #4 on: November 04, 2007, 12:20:41 am
The compression stroke is the part of the cycle that tries to stop you from rolling on further - the kick start will feel very tough to move. At that time, you are just before Top dead center. Using the decompresser and just barely rolling past that point, puts you past TDC, a prime place to start.

Make sure the fuel is on, the run / kill switch is run, throttle off, choke on, if needed, turn key, and.....
Kick briskly, as far as you can - get the lever all the way down, and if your timing is good, the bike will start.

Murphy suggests otherwise, and if he is right, do it all again.

Make sure the timing is good. My ankle still hurts.
aka Indiana Bulleteer.
''99 Classic Bullet. '05 Ural Tourist sidecar rig, converted to 2wd. '05 Harley Davidson Sportster.
Jefferson County, WA


indian48

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Reply #5 on: November 04, 2007, 12:34:56 am
As a new and first time rider, I am struggling to manage the kick start as well! It works fine when the bike is warmed up, its the starting from cold that I need the battery for - unfortunately that is when the recommendation is to use the kick start, in the interest of battery life - as recommended to me at the shop. I am guessing that kicking it to life gets easier as the engine gets broken in.
To the advice posted, I would add that once you get past TDC, you want to let the kick start lever go and let it come back on its own to the top, so when you do kick it down, you get the benefit of the entire length of the stroke. As I said, this works fine for me when the bike is warm,,,,,,,,,
Good luck - and I endorse the comment about things not working too well at traffic lights!
If anything is worth doing, it is worth doing well


Foggy_Auggie

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Reply #6 on: November 04, 2007, 01:22:26 am
WARNING:
the above method is guaranteed not to work if you've just stalled the bike at traffic lights

D'oh!

REgards

TT


And the Enfield doesn't give any advance warning - such as stuttering - when you run out of gas... The engine just quits smartly.
Mine quit at a very busy intersection while waiting for the light.  The time it took for me to reach down and move the tank valve to reserve, the car horns started honking and traffic started going around me on both sides.  Thank heaven for the electric starter - even though it took some cranking while the carb float bowl refilled.

I now fill up every 150 miles regardless.  Keeping  track of the mileage on a note pad.

Regards, Foggy
Diagonally parked in a parallel universe.

Fortiter Et Fideliter


indian48

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Reply #7 on: November 04, 2007, 02:41:36 am
To the last post, that is a big concern and the one thing that RE is still not doing is installing a fuel level gauge. The engine cutting out when you go to reserve could be fatal if it happened at a critical moment,,,does it really cut out without a warning stutter? I know my old Jawa stuttered and I had just enough time to move the cock to reserve.
If anything is worth doing, it is worth doing well


RagMan

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Reply #8 on: November 04, 2007, 11:08:32 am
Mine has run out once - it did not stutter, but it did surge slightly - I have felt that surge on other occasions, and switched then successfully.
aka Indiana Bulleteer.
''99 Classic Bullet. '05 Ural Tourist sidecar rig, converted to 2wd. '05 Harley Davidson Sportster.
Jefferson County, WA


indian48

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Reply #9 on: November 04, 2007, 11:39:57 am
Finally managed to kick start the bike when cold - not quite the way I want to finally, but with the bike on the center stand. I followed the steps laid out here, and was rewarded on the second attempt. My problem also is that being a left handed person, my left leg is stronger than the right one as well, and keeping the bike on the center stand allowed me to use the stronger limb! Either leg, I think that the center stand allows for a better range of motion that is part of the trick I suspect.
If anything is worth doing, it is worth doing well


dewjantim

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Reply #10 on: November 04, 2007, 05:23:55 pm
I'm with you, I hate to kickstart my bike on the sidestand, it wobbles around to much....Dew.
If it hurts, you're not dead yet!!!!!


Foggy_Auggie

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Reply #11 on: November 04, 2007, 07:06:54 pm
To the last post, that is a big concern and the one thing that RE is still not doing is installing a fuel level gauge. The engine cutting out when you go to reserve could be fatal if it happened at a critical moment,,,does it really cut out without a warning stutter? I know my old Jawa stuttered and I had just enough time to move the cock to reserve.

Mine just quits suddenly.  One time while riding, as in my post, and each time I store it for winter.

After putting Sta-Bil in a full gas tank - I run the bike at idle and then shut off the fuel petcock.  I hold the throttle just off of idle.  In about 1-1/2 minutes it just stops like the ignition is cut off.

No fuel gauge is needed, but a resetting trip odometer would really be great.  On my other bikes (without fuel gauges) I just reset the trip odometer to "000" everytime I fill up the gas tank.  I go 150 to 175 miles and then pull into a gas station - a regular routine I've done all my life.

Regards, Foggy
Diagonally parked in a parallel universe.

Fortiter Et Fideliter


indian48

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Reply #12 on: November 04, 2007, 08:12:40 pm
I would not ever want to ks it on the sidestand, but it would be nice to be able to do so from cold, sitting on it with the left leg planted on the left of the bike! For now though, the center stand it is, from the right side, but using my stronger left leg. Leave the ES for just the traffic situations.
If anything is worth doing, it is worth doing well


Kiwichick

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Reply #13 on: November 04, 2007, 11:07:32 pm
Excuse my ignorance, but can you tell me, when I gently kick it over two or three times prior to starting (with decomp lever pulled) does this put fuel into the carb fuel bowl as well as distribute oil?


Thanks
Biddy


indian48

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Reply #14 on: November 04, 2007, 11:50:00 pm
I believe that the fuel to carb bowl is gravity fed, but what the priming strokes may do is to pull some fuel air mix into the cylinder.
If anything is worth doing, it is worth doing well