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OK I have a hard time starting my 600 . She has a kacr instead of a compression release lever. She is very hard to start you have to find Tdc and kick her from there. I can kick her all day long and if you don't follow a certain procedure she wont start. The kacr makes it feel like your kicking a marshmello very easy. I just can't fire her up. I just bought her and she runs . drove it and so on when I bought it 2 months ago. But now no matter how I kick her nothing. Spark IS there getting gas has great compression and everything seems and looks fine. She is only a kick start . I wish she had that magic button (starter). Any ideas and input would be greatly appreciated. From my research that I have done I found out that these bikes are hard to start in the cold weather. But I have heat in my shop and still nothing. HELP PLEASE !!!!!
 

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Check the valve lash.

On the KLR650, tight valves make it hard to start. Should be the same rule of thumb on the 600.

If you find they are tight, set them to the loose side.

Check and record the clearances for each valve. Subtract that clearance from the desired clearance (.008" on the intake, .010" on the exhaust (those are 650 specs and I assume the 600 is the same)) and write that down. Divide those answers by .002. For example, if you check an exhaust and measure the gap at .004" and you want .010", the difference is .006". Divide .006" by .002 gets you 3. You need to go down three shim sizes to get the valve in spec. If that valve had a 270 shim, you need to install a 255.

The shim size should be marked on the back side of the shim. A 270 is 2.7mm thick. Each shim size changes .002" from the next, so a 265, at 2.65mm, is .002" thinner and will give you .002" more lash.

You can move shims around in the head, reusing them, and only order what you need. In the example above, if you find that you have a 255 at another valve, re-use it on the exhaust.

If you plan on keeping the bike, it's cheap enough to order the next set of shims you're going to need (10,000 miles or more from now ;^)) and keep them in your spares bin until you need them. Less down time next go-round.

The easiest place to get the shims is from the BMW motorcycle dealer, as they often have them in stock and they were used on the old K100 bikes. Cheaper than the Kawasaki dealer. The SHO Taurus used them, too, so the Ford dealer might have them. They were used on some Yamahas, too.

BMW of Detroit is over Sterling Heights way.

Tom
 

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Thanks Tom. I'll drop it off this Saturday at your house lolololololol . OK great that is some good info. Probably tear into her tonight. !I'll let you know how it goes. So that would make it a bear to start. I don't even get a putter from her. She has 6500 miles on her but I know that doesn't mean anything.! Becomes very frustrating when you can't ride and you want too
 

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OK I have a hard time starting my 600 . The kacr makes it feel like your kicking a marshmello very easy.---- But now no matter how I kick her nothing.
Spark IS there getting gas has great compression--------
She is only a kick start . I wish she had that magic button (starter).
Any ideas and input would be greatly appreciated.
Tv6312,
Exactly how much compression did you measure?
The OEM 600 service manual has an error in it. They measured it with a Dis-Engaged KACR.
So from KLR650 experience, I'll suggest "great compression" with an active KACR would be 115-125 PSI. Warm weather Startable compression with an active KACR, minimum is probably 75-80 PSI.

The 1984 KLR600 had a 'finicky' ignition module. Would spark at kicking speed with-out spark plug installed. But might NOT spark at kicking speed with spark plug Installed.
Part # might be molded into plastic case.
Original #21119-1106 SS to 21119-1252. Both are NLA from Kawa.
 

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Good info from Paul above. I wonder if it could be retrofitted with a Gen 1 set-up of that module is bad.

Can you give us more information? Did it suddenly become harder to start or did it happen over time?

Had you not started it in a long time before your recent efforts?

What I gave you was along the lines of "When you hear hoofbeats, think 'horses' not 'zebras'" (and I admit I don't always do that very well). Tight valves are a common cause of hard starting, but it usually happens sort of gradually.

Bad gas, a pooched petcock, drastically different weather, varnish in the carb from sitting a long time, varnish in the carb from having sat a long time and then being run until and some crap busts loose in the carb, etc, are all other potential causes.

6500 miles on a 30 year old bike means it has sat around a LOT, and 6500 miles might not be enough to have the valves need adjusting.

The more info, the better.

I hope it was sitting in some guy's garage, on blocks and under a cover and you paid $100 for it, 'cuz that would be a cool barn find! Love to see pictures of it.

Tom
 

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Man, that looks nice!

I think a good place to start is with the valves, as it's just a 20 minute job to check them.

Pull the tank, remove the valve cover, pull the two plastic plugs out of the left side case and roll it over to top dead center (650s have a "T" mark visible in the small plug hole; 600 should have something similar). You can see the 650's rotor markings here.

The cam lobes should be pointing away from one another. If they are not, roll it through another revolution until they are pointing away from one another. That is, the exhaust lobes will point forward and the intake lobes will point aft.

Grab your feeler gauges and check the clearances and we'll go from there.

I think, if the valves are OK, that you'd be looking at testing the petcock for flow, throwing away whatever gas is in the tank and replacing with known good fuel, replacing the fuel line, pulling the spark plug and testing for spark at the plug, and giving the carb a good cleaning. Not all at once, but pretty much in that order.

No fear on the carb; there is a set of videos that can walk you through it.

Logic is this: You looked at it, started it, rode it, and bought it. Who knows how long it sat. Restarting an old, laid up bike can jar stuff loose such that it gives problems after a short ride. If the valves are tight it won't start easily no how. If they are good but the petcock is pooched it won't start with no gas. You may not know the vintage of the gas or what may be in the bottom of the tank; drain it, add a pint of good fuel, swish it around real good, drain it, and stick a gallon of good fuel in there. The fuel line may be 30 years old and degraded, delivering gunk to the carb. If there's no spark at the plug (per Paul's comments) ya gotta get that fixed. If all that passes or gets fixed, the carb may be gunked up. You may have to do only some of these things to get it running, or you may have to do all of them. Just know that it's a simple machine and not a lot can go horribly wrong and nothing is going to cost you a lot of money.

By the way, does it have fresh oil and filter in it?

Tom
 

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Just bought it a couple months ago. Road it to test II and I bought her. Brought her home now I can't start her.
Tv6312,
Wow, cosmetically she is almost a 'cherry'.
I still wish to know how much engine compression that you measured!
And I'll ask that you take a "Before valve adjustment" compression reading, followed by an "after valve adjustment" reading, if it even needs adjustment.

But let us all three back-up a second. K.I.S.S.
Did you inspect to confirm that the foam air filter is intact, cleaned and properly oiled 2 months ago?
Did you drain the 2 Month OLD gas from the carb yesterday, Before you tried to start it?
Did you put fresh gas into the fuel tank 2 months ago? If so did you put stabilizer into that fresh gas? If no stabilizer was put in, then that gas should be run only in your lawn mower or disposed of!
Two month old fuel Can Wet Foul a slightly carboned spark plug.
And two month old fuel can plug a pilot jet. Both or Either issues can prevent starting.

I do hope that this posting is read before the bike is dis-assembled.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
The guy I bought it from rode it quite abit from just me talking to him he had a newer one and just wanted to let this go. I also got a service manual with her she is in great shape. I will be doing all of this coming up this weekend . Thank you to all and I'll reread all the post and answer what I can answer thanks guys ..totally appreciate everything. Just want to ride her lol
 

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I would send her into a shop but I have 7 kids and can't really afford to do that right now loll plus after 48 years of riding I ll get this beast running right
 

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OK I have a hard time starting my 600 . She has a kacr instead of a compression release lever. She is very hard to start you have to find Tdc and kick her from there. I can kick her all day long and if you don't follow a certain procedure she wont start. The kacr makes it feel like your kicking a marshmello very easy. I just can't fire her up. I just bought her and she runs . drove it and so on when I bought it 2 months ago. But now no matter how I kick her nothing. Spark IS there getting gas has great compression and everything seems and looks fine. She is only a kick start . I wish she had that magic button (starter). Any ideas and input would be greatly appreciated. From my research that I have done I found out that these bikes are hard to start in the cold weather. But I have heat in my shop and still nothing. HELP PLEASE !!!!!
I'm not clear on the starting problem as you describe it. Are you saying it never starts or that it starts only if you do everything "just right"?

If it starts but only if you do everything right, it sounds like a typical kick starter, large displacement single. They all have a "kick starting routine" that must be followed.

If it never starts, the trouble shooting routines previously posted apply.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
OK I messed around with the klr for a while . drained the gas ,put fresh in. new gas filter ,new plug . kicked her over. Then I remembered that I need to find Tdc so once I found Tdc I kicked her about 8 times and she puffed . flooded her out lol. After I cleared out the gas she fired right up after a few kicks . I do believe she needs the timing done and valves adjusted. So I am reading up on that . but sure was nice to take her for a spin. Does not like the cold weather at all. Thanks for all the advice and I'll be asking for more . Tim
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Only starts if you do everything right i couldnt get that part. But like i said. I believe she needs some work done to her. Valve adjustment and timing
 
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