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1984 KLR600 A1, 1977 Yamaha TT500 Street licensed, 1988 BMW K75S,
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Discussion Starter · #21 ·
Pdwestman, thank you for the great info.
After a bit of testing I think my kacr is working as intended, and I am back to looking into the carburetor as the cause for the nearly impossible to start issue. I forgot to mention earlier that another sign that it has always been a PITA to start is that the tab on the frame that the stand is on has been welded either partially or completely back on, and not at the correct angle.
I am thinking of buying a 650 carb and rejetting it for the 600. People just want too much money for an actual 600 carb.
I am hoping that a different carb will make a difference.
I am wondering if anyone has any experience with the chinese CVK knock offs? I am not going to consider getting one but at $180 it does make me wonder how well they work.
While testing the kacr I found that the engine has far more compression than my TT500 which always starts on the 2nd kick. I think eliminating the kacr altogether is not an option.
While I had the kacr locked I found it made no difference in the likelihood that it would start, it was just more fussy to crank it around. I suppose it is possible that the kacr is not timed correctly but it seems about right. I also found that it seems to have great spark even when the battery is run down a bit.
I still can’t get over how perfectly it runs when it can be started. If I hadn’t had that experience I might have decided to cut my losses. But instead I am going to continue for a while longer.
 

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2013 KLR 650/692, 2017 HD Electraglide Ultra
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Have you tried starting fluid spray yet?
 

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Many of the 1984 KLR600 CDI units didn't spark well at too low of cranking speeds. And it takes a certain technique to find the 'sweet-spot' of engine cycle to get enough momentum to spin-it thru.
Tom Schmitz, aka Souperdoo learned the technique. Maybe he can coach you?
I also found that it seems to have great spark even when the battery is run down a bit.
I still can’t get over how perfectly it runs when it can be started.
The KLR600 & Gen 1 KLR650's have Magneto Powered CDI ignition systems. You could throw the batteries AWAY and the engines would still run.

Take note of the BOLDED line. Your comment about runs great, once started, seems to substantiate that. As does the worn out kick pedal, footrest & side stand with only 7000+ miles.
I replaced one CDI on a customers bike, back in 1984.

I'm also hoping that Tom Schmitz might chime in on this matter. He installed a complete KLR600 ignition system, flywheel & kickstarter onto his Gen 2 bike to show it could be done. Initial flywheel & piston position matters greatly with only a turn & a half to two rotations of the crankshaft with a kickstarter. As does a properly clean & jetted carb.
 

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The '84 is both cool and a royal pain in the ass. It had a unique CDI and rotor, so it's questionable if a later CDI could work. Theoretically, you can make anything work but the rotor has an interrupted reluctor, so who knows? The thing also has a short crank, so you can not (< that's an edit) retro e-start, and a single-phase alternator. They should have just called it a Suzuki and blamed it all on them and let them futz with the 600. It's not like KHI and Suzuki haven't shared bikes. It could have been a precursor to the DRZ/KLX400.

What I'm saying is that there's not much you can do to fix the basic system. Starting it is a matter of well-functioning gear and proper timing. Trying to start the damn thing with a FUBAR lever is all but impossible. Yer gonna hurt yerself. Go to e-bay and get a KZ900/1000 lever. They are usually cheap and in good shape (who kicks a KZ?) and they fit well. That will solve one issue.

As to timing, you need to be able to picture what's going on in your head so you understand why jumping the frick up and down on the thing won't start it.

As @pdwestman says, a mighty kick is only going to turn the engine over on revolution. Here's the safest way I can think of to start the damn thing. Turn the key off and kick it through. What that will do is pull some fuel and air into the cylinder walls and on the piston. At least there will be some combustible residue in the cylinder if you flub up on the next part. think of it as a priming. Now bring it up around again until you feel the exhaust valves close and the intake valves open, which is putting it into the intake/compression cycles. This valve action will feel sort of like a bloop-bloop. You don't want to take it much further because you want your kick to have time to create some piston velocity. Turn the key on and kick it like a boss. What should happen is that the piston should move from approaching BDC on the intake stroke and get accelerated around and through TDC on the compression stroke. That's about as much range as you can power as you can provide with the kick lever and you want to get the crankshaft and rotor moving to provide some inertia to help push through the ignition point at 10*BTDC.

I say safest because you don't want the thing to kick back on you. That can hurt. Been there, done that, got the t-shirt. With the ignition off that can't happen. Once you get the feel of proper placement (bloop-bloop) you'll be able to do all of this with the key on, you won't need to do the priming thing, and it will be as difficult as it is in the video that I'm sure you've seen of me kicking my Frankenbike. That Gen 2 has a Gen 1 ignition and charging system. It starts really easily.

Just jumping up and down on it pretty much guarantees that you are sending it through the wrong part of the four-stroke cycle 99.99999% of the time, due to its propensity to stop at exactly the wrong spot all the time.

Of course, you need to make sure that your valves are set to the maximum clearance and that your CCC is good. The fact that it runs really well is a fairly good indicator that it has decent compression. And don't even think about taking the KACR off. That would be Not Smart™, an activity in which I am well-versed.
 

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And don't even think about taking the KACR off. That would be Not Smart™, an activity in which I am well-versed.
Maybe that ought to be a ts?

Thanks for the input TS. ;)

I know you type faster than I.
 

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1984 KLR600 A1, 1977 Yamaha TT500 Street licensed, 1988 BMW K75S,
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Discussion Starter · #26 ·
I really appreciate the help.
Is the KZ lever longer? Or what makes it better? I was able to buy a NOS lever but I am not apposed to putting on a KZ lever. I might also get another CDI box, anyone have a known good spare? It definitely seems that might be the issue.
I will also go through the valves again. They are in the middle of the range but I will set them closer to the maximum. I already have a carburetor on its way.
I have many years experience starting my TT 500 and even though it feels very similar I probably have to learn a different technique, the TT has really spoiled me.
And to the bloop-bloop part of the technique are you saying to just go past the second bloop? I’ve been going to the spot between the bloops?

As to the question about starting fluid. I have tried it and doesn’t work either. That might be another indication that the CDI box is weak.
I often get what seems like a lean burp out of the carburetor, even with the ether.
 

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Is the KZ lever longer? Or what makes it better?
Primarily the swivel & retainer clip is stronger & more durable on the KZ lever, so the pedal shank doesn't set at an angle, allowing your foot to slip off.
 

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The KZ lever is also more plentiful and cheaper and often in like-new condition (who kicks a KZ?). It is just about the same length. However, if you have a 600 lever, by all means use it. You should put the KZ washer on it, though.

Dont tell me that you're doing all this shit without having read about Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About A KLR Kickstarter But Were Afraid (or too smart) To Ask. Sheesh, here I go to all the trouble to write shit up and nobody reads it... I am depressed.

I go past the second bloop.
 

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I read it out of pity for someone that would write all those exquisite directions that almost no one will use. 😆
 

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Discussion Starter · #30 ·
Just today I did follow the link that pdwestman included and read the entire article.
I also watched the vids on rebuilding the CVK.
At this point I am thinking I am either dealing with the CDI or carburetor issue as the leading cause for my grief. But maybe I should say I am hoping it’s one of those two things, because if I address those things plus readjust the valves and still can’t start it in 2-4 kicks then I’ll just have a boat anchor on new tires, and a brand new kick lever that’s of no use.
 

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I don’t remember—does your KLR 600 have an electric start, or kick only? If so, can you start it that way reliably? How about roll starting it? As I understand it, the CDI is one of those things that either work or don’t work at all. Did you mess with the cams, and if yes, are you sure you got them reinstalled and timed correctly?

Note to Tom S, Paul W, and Damocles: did the KLX 600 CDI have the yellow wire for low speed spark control?
 

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Note to Tom S, Paul W, and Damocles: did the KLX 600 CDI have the yellow wire for low speed spark control?
The kickstart ONLY 1984 KLR600 would not have even had the 'Easy Button' on the handlebar to energize the wire you speak of. :)

According to the service manuals that Yellow/Black wire was added to the 1990 - 2007 KLR650's.
 

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1984 KLR600 A1, 1977 Yamaha TT500 Street licensed, 1988 BMW K75S,
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Discussion Starter · #33 ·
I don’t remember—does your KLR 600 have an electric start, or kick only? If so, can you start it that way reliably? How about roll starting it? As I understand it, the CDI is one of those things that either work or don’t work at all. Did you mess with the cams, and if yes, are you sure you got them reinstalled and timed correctly?

Note to Tom S, Paul W, and Damocles: did the KLX 600 CDI have the yellow wire for low speed spark control?
Mine is the first year Kl600A1, so kick start only. While I have not tried roll starting I am sure it would start that way. I have got it started twice with the kick starter and rode it once an 1/8mi down my driveway. It runs perfectly when running. I have a CDI box coming as well as another carburetor that I am going to clean very carefully.
I had the whole top end off. But have triple checked valve timing, etc.
So hopefully one of these three things will make it start somewhat reliably, (I’d be almost happy with somewhat reliably) 1) readjusting valves to max tolerance 2) CDI 3) super cleaned carb.
 

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Discussion Starter · #34 ·
I stopped keeping track of the dollars...

Used and NOS parts are from ebay.

I really enjoyed doing business directly with Wattman and Eagle Mike, most of my new parts come from Tri County Honda Kawasaki in Petersburg WV.


Parts List and Work:

Forward balancer shaft NOS
Solid balancer sprockets USED
Balancer chain guides and bolts USED
Side stand USED
Kick lever NOS
Side cover gaskets NEW
Exhaust seal NEW
Exhaust packing NOS
Thermobob NEW
Front brake lever NEW
Coolant hose, water pump to cylinder NOS
Tires front and rear NEW
Rear brake shoes NOS
Fork seals NOS
Eagle Mike’s Doohickey NEW
Eagle Mike’s carburetor screws NEW
Cam tensioner, aftermarket
CDI box USED
Carburetor USED
Weld and machine cam tensioner mount on cylinder
Drill banjo bolts
Misc nuts, bolts, screws and pins NEW

There must be something that I am forgetting, this list looks too short. It might just be that it’s impossible to see all of the hours spent (mostly enjoyable) 1st exploring the damage, then finding the parts, and putting it together again.
My intention through all of this is to end up with a bike I can use and enjoy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #36 ·
Do you know what I'm referring to by poking a wire into & back-flushing the 4 low speed transition holes?
I’m not sure. Where are the 4 low speed transition holes?
I just started reviewing the Redondo Ron article, is it covered in that?
 

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The pilot jet, which is UP Inside that tower, feeds 5 outlets in the floor of the throat of the carburetor. The external mixture screw is the 1st one, to be able to correctly adjust idle speed mixture.
The other 4 are at the bottom lip of the throttle plate. The 1st one (of 4) is usually just barely fully exposed at normal idle speed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #38 ·
The pilot jet, which is UP Inside that tower, feeds 5 outlets in the floor of the throat of the carburetor. The external mixture screw is the 1st one, to be able to correctly adjust idle speed mixture.
The other 4 are at the bottom lip of the throttle plate. The 1st one (of 4) is usually just barely fully exposed at normal idle speed.
Thank you for this very helpful information...
 

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Discussion Starter · #39 · (Edited)
Automotive tire Serveware Gas Wood Automotive wheel system Automotive tire Motor vehicle Automotive exterior Rim Gas
A short update....
After readjusting the valves, cleaning the transfer ports, and switching to the used CDI I bought and kicking it 20 or so time’s, and trying to kick it in different ways, I got no where, barely a pop back. But I was able to easily bump start it on my driveway. And it ran perfectly, I rode it until it was warmed up and set the idle and idle mixture. All great right? Well not quite because after shutting it off it only restarts if I bump start it again. WTFH... It has to be a carburetor problem.
So now I am going to try the ebay KLX650 carb, which other than the main jet is jetted the same as the 600 all of the same internal parts, for some reason that surprised me. But onward, the carb is disassembled and soaking in carb cleaner.
And I will then make it spotless, reassemble, and install and hope to H that it makes a difference.
A couple of other things about the KLX650 carb. There are some interesting differences, 1) the vent /vacuum port is right on the back edge of the slide so it is exposed when the slide is as far down as it goes. So I think it gets better vacuum. 2) I found it has the adjustable needle of a KLX650R, I have read on this forum of people wondering if they need the brass washer that comes with the KLX needle kit. As far as I can see it is needed, it is a spacer rather than a washer, it sits beneath the keeper and on top of the clip and without it the needle is able to move up and down in the slide.
 

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Discussion Starter · #40 ·
After all it was the carburetor.... The throughly cleaned KLX650 carb made the difference and other than a need to check the float level (it weeps a bit out the overflow) it is easier to start, not really easy but I can start it and I am sure I will get better at it. And I was able to a ride it to the gas station for some fresh gas.
So now I can give it a good cleaning and then I will post pictures.

Thank you to all of you that contributed your most welcome advise and help, it made a big difference.
 
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