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aaarrg bummer, what is wrong with my bike??

Discussion in 'Technical and Troubleshooting Torque' started by blue_muppet, Oct 6, 2005.

  1. Gyday all,
    I’m hoping someone can help me with this because pushing your bike up a hill in full leathers during peak hour really really sucks and I don’t want to do it again tomorrow!!

    I washed my bike this afternoon and I remember that last time I washed my baby, it idled pretty rough for a little while afterwards. The revs seemed to dip up and down and the bike made a funny ticking sound.

    Anyway, with that in mind, I tried to be pretty careful when I was washing her this afternoon. I decided that since I still had some spare time up my sleeve I’d take her for ride up Mt Coother. All was well until I had just started to get into the twisties. The bike lost pretty much all its power and even when I held it flat in 1st, it just seemed to splutter and the exhaust note sounded really hollow. I pulled over, and let her rest for a while. Got back on and it seemed fine, yet 200m down the road it started with the same problem. I stopped for longer this time but it was same story another km down the road.

    This is pretty much how it went until I got home. What the hell is going on? Is there water in the electrical system or is it something more serious? I think it all seems a little coincidental that I have problems with my bike every time I wash it.

    Any help on this matter would be greatly appreciated.

  2. Some ideas:

    Try riding without the petrol cap. A blocked vent can cause those symptoms

    Check the airbox for water

    Check for water under the rubber caps at the HT lead terminals, coil end

    Spray the hell out of anything remotely electrical with WD40 (good to do before washing as well)
  3. I had this with my bike...I had water in the petrol tank all I did was let the bike idle for a while until I had gotten rid of it...I think a capfull of metho in the tank works a treat too
  4. I'd try the above if you can get the key in the petrol cap and the ignition at the same time.

    But a ticking could possibly be worn leads/plug and the spark is jumping, or could be valves (less likely).

    Funny it happens at intervals, does sound like a fuel supply problem.

    Good Luck,
  5. The same thing is happening with my little shitbox Charade for
    the past few months now. It intermittently cuts out every 20km's or so..
    and I can't fault it when it's stationary. it's slowly getting worse. it's
    starting to show me up at the lights now.

    What I've done for tomorrow is "Jury-rigged" a timing
    scrobe up to one of my spark plug cables. When it starts
    playing up tomorrow, I'll be able to determine if it's an
    electrical problem, or a fuel problem.

  6. Your Charade prob sounds like a dodgy distributor cap.
    As for the bike Icitatus said lots of wd40 all over the electicals, he is correct.

    As for the bike like
  7. yep, WD-40 can't hurt anything, and it's the cheapest and quickest fix if water is the problem; used to work a treat in the old Minis with the distributer right in front of the engine!
  8. I used to have a Mini and a Moke. Same problem with both everytime it rained, they konked. WD-40 used to ride on the Dash at all times and worked a treat. :D
  9. Hi Smee,

    I checked the distributor system according to my hayes manual.
    ... although, admittely, to be certain in cases like these, one has
    to interchange.

    Also, if it was electrical, it would be key-banging-- There's no
    all mighty backfire that you would expect from 3 seconds of nulll
    spark at 4grand.

    ..but tomorrows test will set the record straight.

    It's raining here in adelaide tomorrow.. otherwise i'd be taking
    the gick-sir.

  10. Go with the WD 40 on the elecs, sounds very moisture oriented.

    As for the Mini/mokes, you blokes had never heard of rubber gloves?
    Cut the tips from the fingers and slip over the dizzy. Plug leads thru the fingers, fixed in place with a rubber band.
    Worked on my Cooper S for years :D :D
  11. Entirely off-topic, but French motorcycle manufacturer (yes, they do have ONE) Voxan have a new bike due to go into production called ... the Charade!

    It looks ok but I ask you, Charade? Bloody French.
  12. Other forms of rubber did much the same job :wink:
  13. I used to own a 91 GSF250 and had similar problems. After scratching my head for ages, I reluctantly took it to a mechanics. The bike had been sitting out in the weather over winter, and the resultant rain and condensation had pooled in the air box (10 cm deep pool!). It ran really badly when load was placed on the engine, but was only just noticeable in 1st gear.

    Take a peek inside the airbox and take alook at the filter (could be wet through), you may be suprised at what you see. If mine was able to fill up just sitting around, I reckon there's a fair chance yours could while washing it!
  14. The ticking does sound like leads earthing out. Water will exagerate this.

    Run the engine in the dark and use a spray bottle of water to trouble shoot. Pay paticular attention to areas where the leads are close to the chasis or motor.

    Alternatively you could have water in the plug recesses. I can imagine they are prety deep on your bike.

    I can't see how the airbox would cause this problem, but give it a go.
  15. My guess is water in the fuel. this normally accumulates at the fuel filter.

    Drain the fuel filter and a splash of Methylated Spirits in the tank will help dissolve an residual water in the tank.

    Check the seal on the filler cap. If its faulty, you could be introducing water every time you wash or it rains?
  16. Thanks for all the replys people!

    I rode my bike to uni this morning and it seemed like it was back to normal. I'll take it for anouther ride up the mountain this afternoon to see how it handels under load.

    When you mean spraying it with WD-40, do you mean just spray the outside of the electrical cables ect or do I have to take them apart and spray the internals?

    I'll also have a look at the airbox as well. One thing though, I know that on most bikes you can lift the tank up to get underneith but for the life of me, I can't figure out how to do it on the bandit. It seems that there are a lot of hoses and wires that prevent it from being lifted all the way up. This would make it pretty hard to get at the airbox.

    Any tips Cammo? Is their any other problems or little things I should know about with the 91 GSF250?

    Thanks in advance.

  17. By electrical we mean leads etc.
    You don't necessarily have to take them apart but after a wash maybe remove a spark lead and see if water has gotten in anywhere then just use that fine spray nozzle that comes with wd40.

    Looks like all the water has dried off and your bike is running fine.
    Does it do the same when riding in the rain?
  18. The reason I suspect the dizzy is becaus on my VL (I know totally different cars) after it warmed up it would just stop similarlry to how you describe It was a faulty crank angle sensor which is attached to the dizzy.
    Not all electrical problems do key banging but they are 99% of the cause of all intermittent problems.
  19. Easiest way to check for water in the airbox would be to open the drain valve, basically a length of rubber hose coming out of the underside of the airbox with a cap over the end of it (located near the rear shock).

    The procedure for getting into the airbox is in the owners manual, but assuming you don't have one the procedure is fairly simple: Firstly remove the seat and you should see two bolts securing the rear of the fuel tank. Remove these and you should be able to slide the back of the tank back and upwards enough to get at the top of the air filter box (to remove the tank you need to disconnect the fuel lines but it should be possible to lift the tank enough to get at the air filter with them in place). There should be a hinged cover over the top of the filter box held down by a couple of screws, underneath this is the air filter.
  20. Sorry, can't remember too well how to get at the airbox. If you haven't already, take the seat off, unbolt the tank at the rear(?), and I think that you can then swing it around. Rest it on something if you don't like the idea of unplugging all the lines. It is easier to do this with another person helping. From memory, the airbox lid is just screwed on (I think!).