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Old 10-13-2010, 09:06 AM   #1
dynamyk444
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Default Ironhead carb issues?

I'm now stumped by my kick only 73 Sporty's inability to start.
This problem has come on abruptly, not a history here. It will VERY occasionally pop a couple times but no ignintion.

Here's what I've checked so far- keep in mind this is my first go at really repairing her myself.


-Checked spark (2 month old Dyna electronic ignition plugs, wires and coil)- good
*Plugs do oil foul quickly, but I've been assuming thats because I need a top end rebuild.
-Checked gas- good
-Replaced battery- 12.5V
-Verified fuel to carb body- good

Pulled air filter and observed fuel squirt from the fitting near front toward the back in a kinda "gentle curve". It only squirts when the throttle is at apx 75%. No idea if that's normal?

The first time this happened, I went through my normal starting sequence then kicked the hell out it for 15 minutes. After I pulled and replaced the fuel line from the carb body it sputtered 2x. A couple more kicks and she fired up. I rode about 10 miles- she ran fine. I parked it for several hours, then tried again thinking I had cleared a fuel clog- same problem. This time it just wont come alive. It's popped only a couple times for me since.

The 50+ kicks I put on it drained the battery. As a precaution, I replaced it.
Although it's a bit hard to be sure, I'm fairly certain that the plugs are always dry. Also, I could swear I used to be able to "hear" the fuel squirting when I rolled the throttle before starting up. I hear nothing now?

She has a partially rebuilt Bendix carb with a very new accel pump.

I'm thinking my issue is the carb. Trouble is, I have zero clue what "normal" is supposed to look like with the fuel flow, etc.

Help....

Last edited by dynamyk444; 10-13-2010 at 09:48 AM.
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Old 10-13-2010, 09:38 AM   #2
Ratrod37
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Default Re: Ironhead won't start

I would try a brand new set of plugs first.If it still won't start then try hitting it with some starting fluid.If it starts then you have a fuel problem.If it still won't start then you have other issues.Good luck and remember to start with the easiest first...........And also you may want to do and introduction or you will catch some shit about it.
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Old 10-13-2010, 09:45 AM   #3
kickstarts
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Default Re: Ironhead won't start

It's your accel pump. You should get a good squirt immediately, as soon as you crack the throttle and it should not be a light arc. Did you rebuild with a USA made kit? The import kits accel pumps never work, they just don't fit correctly which causes them to get stuck in the pump well forever.
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Old 10-13-2010, 09:49 AM   #4
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Default Re: Ironhead won't start

Thanks man, I took care of the intro.

I'll try a fresh set of plugs for sure.
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Old 10-13-2010, 09:52 AM   #5
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Default Re: Ironhead won't start

A reputable local shop did the work. I can only say that the pump is new. The mechanic owns and regularly rides a 45'- I would hope that he knows the value of quality parts.
I'll give him a call to see what's what.

Thanks!!
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Old 10-13-2010, 09:59 AM   #6
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Default Re: Ironhead carb issues?

If it only starts to squirt at 3/4 throttle, it's your accel pump.

Try this. Clean your plugs first, take your air cleaner off and grab the throttle lever on the left side of the carb with your left hand, on the right side of the carb put your thumb on the end of the accel pump shaft where it meets the throttle shaft. Now move the throttle shaft open with your left hand while pushing down on the accel pump shaft and watch to see if you have a full stream of fuel. If you do, crank it 3 times this way and it should start. Then you can ride it over to the mechanic and tell him your accel pump ain't working.
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Old 10-13-2010, 12:03 PM   #7
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Default Re: Ironhead carb issues?

What a great trick!! I cant wait to give it a try!! I'll certainly let you know!
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Old 10-13-2010, 02:24 PM   #8
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Default Re: Ironhead carb issues?

If your Dyna electronic ignition is a Dyna "S", pull the plate and take a look to be sure you don't have a stretched or busted advance mechanism spring.
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Old 10-13-2010, 02:36 PM   #9
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Default Re: Ironhead carb issues?

Well, that cinches it!
Kickstarts was dead on the money!! My 2 month old accel pump is the trouble maker. By pushing on it as described, the gas jetted 2x as far... making it into the cylinder! After that, a single kick brought her to life.

Already called the mechanic- she's going back tonight. He didn't seem amused by my newfound prowess in v-twin mechanics :P

Really, everybody- THANK YOU for ALL your suggestions!
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Old 10-13-2010, 02:48 PM   #10
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Default Re: Ironhead carb issues?

You probably have an intake leak too that isn't helping
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Old 10-13-2010, 03:14 PM   #11
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Default Re: Ironhead carb issues?

Teach,
You're suggesting that the connection between the carb and cylinders may be leaking?
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Old 10-13-2010, 04:30 PM   #12
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Default Re: Ironhead carb issues?

Correct - a very common problem, especially if you have the O-ring style seals.
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Last edited by keithb; 04-20-2011 at 08:59 PM.
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