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Discussion Starter #1
Alright, Sunday I rode the KLR.
Monday, I was planning on riding her to work. She started up and while I was suiting up, she just died. Sounded like somebody turned the key off. Figured I was out of fuel (later found out I'm not), so switch to reserve and thumb the starter again. Lots of spinning not much actual running. It will catch a time or two, turn over on it's own power for a revolution or two, then die.

I've checked the spark plug, it looked good, but I replaced it with a new one anyway. Checked spark while I had it out, looked like a nice clean blue spark. Tried starting with new plug, fired up, ran for maybe 5 seconds, then died.

Sprayed carb cleaner down the throat of the carb while trying to start, got nothing.

Checked valve clearances, one intake is towards the tight end, but still well within spec, all other valves are dead square in the middle of spec. Checked cam timing while I was in there, looked to be spot on, Cam chain still plenty tight.

Pulled carb apart, went over everything, pulled main and pilot jets, both sparkling clean, as was everything else on the top and the bottom of the carb. Float bowl is filling as it should.

Bypassed all safety switches, nothing.

Charged battery fully.

Turns over like a champ, just doesn't fire. Might get a cough or two and it try to fire for a revolution or two, but never an idle.

I have only two ideas left for what it could be... KACR failed engaged, keeping it from getting full compression. Or bad coil. Anybody have any other ideas before I order a $100 coil? So tired, just want my bike to run!

Oh, other notes incase they may be relevant...
Just started using oil in the last couple weeks.
While on the trail slowly crawling my way out of a rock hole the weekend before last, it was doing some dying. Idle steady, then died, but restarted like it was nothing. Did that a few times.
While it was running immediately prior to not running, it was making NO unusual noises, sounds, or vibrations. It was running just perfectly, no hints at all that I would have the strong urge to take her out back and put her down like a lame horse.
 

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Alright, Sunday I rode the KLR.
Monday, I was planning on riding her to work. She started up and while I was suiting up, she just died. Sounded like somebody turned the key off. Figured I was out of fuel (later found out I'm not), so switch to reserve and thumb the starter again. Lots of spinning not much actual running. It will catch a time or two, turn over on it's own power for a revolution or two, then die.

I've checked the spark plug, it looked good, but I replaced it with a new one anyway. Checked spark while I had it out, looked like a nice clean blue spark. Tried starting with new plug, fired up, ran for maybe 5 seconds, then died.

Sprayed carb cleaner down the throat of the carb while trying to start, got nothing.

Checked valve clearances, one intake is towards the tight end, but still well within spec, all other valves are dead square in the middle of spec. Checked cam timing while I was in there, looked to be spot on, Cam chain still plenty tight.

Pulled carb apart, went over everything, pulled main and pilot jets, both sparkling clean, as was everything else on the top and the bottom of the carb. Float bowl is filling as it should.

Bypassed all safety switches, nothing.

Charged battery fully.

Turns over like a champ, just doesn't fire. Might get a cough or two and it try to fire for a revolution or two, but never an idle.

I have only two ideas left for what it could be... KACR failed engaged, keeping it from getting full compression. Or bad coil. Anybody have any other ideas before I order a $100 coil? So tired, just want my bike to run!

Oh, other notes incase they may be relevant...
Just started using oil in the last couple weeks.
While on the trail slowly crawling my way out of a rock hole the weekend before last, it was doing some dying. Idle steady, then died, but restarted like it was nothing. Did that a few times.
While it was running immediately prior to not running, it was making NO unusual noises, sounds, or vibrations. It was running just perfectly, no hints at all that I would have the strong urge to take her out back and put her down like a lame horse.


Fuel, spark, compression...


You''ve got spark so it's not the coil.

Not likely the KACR failed. Could have broken a ring or valve failure again not likely.

You say the float is filling how did you check it? Did you open the drain while cranking the motor? Have you checked the vacuum line on the back of the petcock?

Another thing to check before you tear into the top end is the wiring harness. There was a recall to re-route the harness on Gen 2 bikes. The most problematic area is on the right side where the harness passes over the votage regulator. It gets pinched between the tank and the sharp edge of the bracket. I had a short in that area that blew the main fuse when I applied the brakes. Never did find burned wires but re-routing and installing extra insulation solved the problem.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
You say the float is filling how did you check it? Did you open the drain while cranking the motor? Have you checked the vacuum line on the back of the petcock?
Clear hose from the drain routed up beside the carb, open drain, manually apply vacuum to petcock with mityvac. Regardless, in the past I've been able to get it to run for 15-30 seconds with just the fuel in the bowl. I've also manually added fuel in the form of carb cleaner through the throttle body.

All the wires have been rerouted and insulated.

I'm leaning towards a spark problem, because the closest it has come to running is the first thumbing of the starter after installing a brand new plug.

The KACR is also a thought, because I've never seen an engine lose compression to the point where it won't start without also losing power and blowing smoke. It basically went from running fine to not running.
 

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Clear hose from the drain routed up beside the carb, open drain, manually apply vacuum to petcock with mityvac. Regardless, in the past I've been able to get it to run for 15-30 seconds with just the fuel in the bowl. I've also manually added fuel in the form of carb cleaner through the throttle body.

All the wires have been rerouted and insulated.

I'm leaning towards a spark problem, because the closest it has come to running is the first thumbing of the starter after installing a brand new plug.

The KACR is also a thought, because I've never seen an engine lose compression to the point where it won't start without also losing power and blowing smoke. It basically went from running fine to not running.

Maybe there's something grounding out. This might sound weird but can you crank the bike over in a dark place? Might be able to see an arc to the frame or faulty insulation on the coil plug lead.

Have you got the shop manual and and a meter? You could do the ignition system checks. The CDI (or whatever it's called on the Gen 2) needs a good battery voltage so it's more sophisticated than the Gen 1 bikes.

I think that the bike would be hard to crank if the KACR wasn't opening the valves. If the it wasn't closing when the bike spun up I would think that it should run.

How much oil is it using? Was the plug oily?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Maybe there's something grounding out. This might sound weird but can you crank the bike over in a dark place? Might be able to see an arc to the frame or faulty insulation on the coil plug lead.
I was in a pretty dark place last night, but not like that. I'll give that a shot tonight, after I get a fresh tire on the other bike.

Have you got the shop manual and and a meter? You could do the ignition system checks. The CDI (or whatever it's called on the Gen 2) needs a good battery voltage so it's more sophisticated than the Gen 1 bikes.
I was thinking the same, charged the battery fully, and tried starting again, same poor results. I haven't gone through the diagnostics in the FSM, been too tired going through what I know.

I think that the bike would be hard to crank if the KACR wasn't opening the valves. If the it wasn't closing when the bike spun up I would think that it should run.
Looking at it, it looks like it would be possible to fail so that the right exhaust cam stayed cracked always. I'm grasping at straws here.

How much oil is it using? Was the plug oily?
Not sure, I'm just starting to notice it, and haven't payed a whole lot of attention to it yet. Plug reads perfect, no wet fauling, no dry fouling, looks like it would make a good poster plug for good condition plug.
 

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Get a load tester on the battery. Other thing I'd check is a vacuum leak on the fuel petcock

Good luck


Sent from my Motorcycle iPad app
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Get a load tester on the battery. Other thing I'd check is a vacuum leak on the fuel petcock
Battery is strong, unnaturally strong. Not sure why, but it is.

No vacuum leak as it still wouldn't run with a full bowl.


And for the "good" news:
Alright, well, finally took out service manual and read ignition troubleshooting section, walk out with service manual and VOM, set them down on the bike, figure one more thumbing of the starters won't hurt anything. "Cough...putt..cough..putterputterputterthumpitythumpthumpthump..."
SMH!

This might be MORE frustrating than the DNS situation! No I have a bike with a known problem, but it's running, and I can't troubleshoot it if she's running.

Guess I'm in for at least a few days of sticking within a 35mile radius of home. (Towing coverage radius.)
 

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could very well be bad fuel. if it got some water in the tank, it would run on what it had in the fuel bowl and then die. had this happen to me on my riding mower last week. ended up draining out over 2 cups of water out of the tank. runs like a champ now...
 

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And you're sure its not one of the two safety switches on the Clutch or the side stand?
 

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I have an 08 that that had the same problems before the wiring harness problem became a recall. I would get intermittent spark on the plug. Everytime it wouldn't start I'd pull the plug,rest it on the jug with the cap on,crank it ,no spark. Put it together and she would start. Very intermittent. That was with 2k miles,replaced harness,21k and still going.
 

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The CDI (or whatever it's called on the Gen 2) needs a good battery voltage so it's more sophisticated than the Gen 1 bikes.
Picking a nit with you, Spec; the Generation 1 ignition (CDI, or Capacitive Discharge Ignition) is more sophisticated than the Generation 2 ignition (FTBI, or Fully-Transistorized Breakerless Ignition), in my humble opinion.

The CDI discharges a capacitor through the ignition coil to fire the spark plug.

The FTBI merely uses a thyristor to interrupt primary coil current, inducing a high-voltage spark from the coil secondary windings. Basically, an INDUCTIVE discharge system, like the old points/coil/condenser ignition system, but "solid-state," as the acronym states, "breakerless."

The CDI-fired KLR's don't need no stinkin' battery to run; ignition completely separate from the electric power generation-and-storage circuitry; the CDI is initially powered from alternating current from the stator exciter coil (that voltage is stepped-up, rectified internally by the CDI and used to charge the capacitor).

The FTBI needs 12 VDC, either from the battery or from a healthy and turning alternator with servicable rectifier, to saturate the ignition coil primary windings, switched off by the thyristor to produce a spark from the induced voltage of the collapsing electro-magnetic field . . . not exactly like the Model T (which used a "vibrating" spark coil), but . . . a lot like the Model A, that used a "breaker" (points) instead of a thyristor . . .

Of the two systems, CDI and FTBI, CDI, to me, is the more sophisticated, and . . . at any rate, the more modern, technology-wise. The FTBI of the Generation 2 KLR650's, to me, is a "great leap backward."

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My opinion notwithstnading, Kawasaki marketing doubtless would insist the "FTBI" is superior to the CDI.
 

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Picking a nit with you, Spec; the Generation 1 ignition (CDI, or Capacitive Discharge Ignition) is more sophisticated than the Generation 2 ignition (FTBI, or Fully-Transistorized Breakerless Ignition), in my humble opinion.

The CDI discharges a capacitor through the ignition coil to fire the spark plug.

The FTBI merely uses a thyristor to interrupt primary coil current, inducing a high-voltage spark from the coil secondary windings. Basically, an INDUCTIVE discharge system, like the old points/coil/condenser ignition system, but "solid-state," as the acronym states, "breakerless."

The CDI-fired KLR's don't need no stinkin' battery to run; ignition completely separate from the electric power generation-and-storage circuitry; the CDI is initially powered from alternating current from the stator exciter coil (that voltage is stepped-up, rectified internally by the CDI and used to charge the capacitor).

The FTBI needs 12 VDC, either from the battery or from a healthy and turning alternator with servicable rectifier, to saturate the ignition coil primary windings, switched off by the thyristor to produce a spark from the induced voltage of the collapsing electro-magnetic field . . . not exactly like the Model T (which used a "vibrating" spark coil), but . . . a lot like the Model A, that used a "breaker" (points) instead of a thyristor . . .

Of the two systems, CDI and FTBI, CDI, to me, is the more sophisticated, and . . . at any rate, the more modern, technology-wise. The FTBI of the Generation 2 KLR650's, to me, is a "great leap backward."

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My opinion notwithstnading, Kawasaki marketing doubtless would insist the "FTBI" is superior to the CDI.


Hah, should of known Kawasaki wouldn't go with newer tech on the Gen 2!

Xlnt explanation!
 

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The CDI-fired KLR's don't need no stinkin' battery to run;
One of the reasons I defeated the clutch / neutral / sidestand switches on my '08 WAS to be able to push start should the battery fail. I've never actually had to try. If you are sure the Gen 1 bikes can do this and the Gen 2 not I would be very interested in retro fitting with a CDI if possible.

What say you and the collective?

Don't mean to highjack thetables thread so if this should be moved let me know how.
 

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Both generation bikes can be bump-started; however . . . if a dead battery is across the terminals of the ignition coils (as in, Generation 2), the task is more difficult than with the older bikes, whose ignition circuit remains entirely independent of the electrical power generation and storage circuitry, regardless of battery condition.

Bump-starting is independent of the safety switches, also, with either generation, AFAIK.

Try it; while rolling down a hill, pull clutch lever, kill your engine. As you coast along, turn on ignition and gently release your clutch. Bike should bump-start, upon engine rotation from drivetrain inertia.
 

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I have done that, and it will restart. Just had me thinking it wouldn't if I tried "push" starting if it wouldn't crank due to a bad battery.
 

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I have done that, and it will restart. Just had me thinking it wouldn't if I tried "push" starting if it wouldn't crank due to a bad battery.
Depends upon 1) How fast you can push (or pull) the bike, and 2) How bad off the condition of the battery might be.

For example, with a shorted cell, push-starting doesn't appear likely with a Generation 2 bike, to me because--the primary ignition coil windings would essentially be shorted out.

Just a discharged battery otherwise in good condition? Would probably start, with a healthy push, IMHO.
 

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One of the reasons I defeated the clutch / neutral / sidestand switches on my '08 WAS to be able to push start should the battery fail. I've never actually had to try. If you are sure the Gen 1 bikes can do this and the Gen 2 not I would be very interested in retro fitting with a CDI if possible.

What say you and the collective?

Don't mean to highjack thetables thread so if this should be moved let me know how.

I've tried push starting my '08, couldn't do it by myself. Tried the typical run along side, bump the seat, run along in gear. 1st off if the bike has set for awhile the clutch will drag so you can't push it in gear. Tried neutral but when you pop it in second the back tire will just skid. You may be able to get it into third but it's still geared too low to let the back tire roll on asphalt. 2 people might be able to get it going but one? Don't think so unless you're NFL material!

Rolling it down a steep enough hill should work if you happen to be on one.
 

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A few months ago I accidentally left my ignition on at work and ran my battery down to nothing. Not even a faint glow on the neutral indicator. A friend helped me push it and after a bit of spitting and sputtering it started. It just took the one attempt.

Edit: My KLR is 2011.

Sent from my iPhone using MO Free
 
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