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Discussion Starter #1
:? Hey Everyone, Hope everyone is doing well. I have a question regarding tune up on my 1600 Vulcan. Its snowing here in NJ so i figured i would keep busy and do an oil change and check my plugs and filter. When i pulled the plugs they were black and i noticed the last few times starting it that black smoke billows out of the top pipe. I have cobra pipes that were on it when i bought it, and as far as i can see there is no programmer on it. The smoke does stop as it warms up, but i notice that when holding the throttle at a steadiny rpm it breaks up a bit. I am thinking thats its running to rich, which a programmer would fix. Any Help and advice would be appreciated. Thanks John :)
 

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AZ's Official Mechanic
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black smoke = gas
blue smoke = oil
white smoke = water
in your case you are correct, way too much gas. make sure the choke is OFF COMPLETELY and not hanging open on ya to start with.
 

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R.I.P. Deron Harden
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Cobra makes their own unit:
FI2000

Should make a big difference. Some folks use the Techlusion TFI box, some the Powercommander. The PowerCommander you need a computer to download and/or adjust the maps. The others are adjusted with screws. All pretty much do the same thing.
 

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re

you are correct T - those units and the power commander usbIII
are worlds apart in tuning capability :wink:
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for the comments, but will the TFI unit lean it out? I was always under the impression that pipes leaned out the bike, not richened it, the baffles are still in, i am wondering if i remove the baffles if it will lean it out. Is it possible that the baffles are clogged enough to richen the mix. Im so confused. Once again thanks for the comments, keep um coming, thanks John
 

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R.I.P. Deron Harden
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I stand corrected..... the FI2000 and the TFI only add fuel, but according to the Cobra and the Techlusion web sites, thats all you need to do in "most situations. From the Techlusion site:

"Q: I hear your product only adds fuel. Some people say you need to remove fuel?
A: It is true that our product only adds fuel. We designed it that way to
keep it simple and affordable. Our belief is that in almost every
situation, addition of fuel is what fuel injected bikes need. Fuel systems
are mapped by the factory to be lean in cruise and everyday driving
conditions in order to meet emission standards. If you decide to change
your fuel system, most aftermarket exhaust systems tend to reduce back
pressure, which leans out the fuel even more."

The PowerCommander does add/subtract fuel, but as I said before is more complicated and more expensive. I have one on my Marauder and it's working fine but I wonder if I needed to spend the extra money or could it have gone towards something else.....
 

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Rich or Lean

A rich mixture isnt all that bad. If your not running rich to a point that your fouling plugs, dont get too crazy leaning it out. Too lean a burn could be a lot more problematic. Rich mixtures creat a good envirement for valves. The rich mixture keeps valves cool. Lean mixtures are hot mixtures. Your plugs may be black from improper use of the choke. If, for instance, you left the choke on too long upon startup, and the rich mixture from the choke made the plugs black, they would remain black, making you think you have too rich a running mixture until you cleaned them. What im trying to say is that your overall mixture may be ok, but your plugs black because of the choke. Clean or change the plugs and carefully use the choke for a while, then recheck the plugs. If you have eliminated the use of the choke as the culprit for making them black and they are black again, then go to the mixture of fuel and air. But dont go too lean, its worse than too rich.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Ok, so i talked to the people at Cobra about the condition and asked them about there version of a control module. The rep Steve was very velpful as you guys in this forum. He told me an over lean condition can cause the plugs the to look as thoiugh it was a rich condition. There unit as well as the TFi Techlusion, does not lean out the a/f mix, only richins it. I did mention to him that my pipes had blued at the muffler pipe after the heat shield. He told me that excess heat is also a symptom of running to lean and would cause the pipes to blue. Suggestions from him were to check gas for moisture and or stale gas, use an exhaust gas analyzer, As luck would have it, i have one of those, to check a/f and see what happens. Does any of this make sense. Please let me know if your in agreement or if you feel there could be something else.

Thanks, John
 

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Hi 1600VTwin,

Black smoke is usually to rich of a mixture as already mentioned. Qkenuf4u made another great point about the choke staying in a partially open position.

Putting on aftermarket pipes does create a lean fuel mixture just not as noticeable as
when you change the Air Intake. Usually to get the best performance from your pipes a high airflow filter or Air Box should be installed. Such as a K&N Filter, Thunder Air Kit,
or Hypercharger. With any of these changes to the exhaust or intake a digital fuel processor must be installed. I'm not saying it. Cobra,Vance & Hines, JArdine, Hard Krome they say you need it and its true.

In my opinion for a digital fuel processor on a Fuel injected bike the best unit and what I went with is the Power Commander III/Usb. PC has maps pre-made for your bike. One thing you can do much easier with a PCIII/usb is having a custom map made
for your bike on the dyno to get the most out of your ride.

Good Luck
 

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re

what pilot said :grin: - thats the way to tune the 1600 :wink:
 

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RIP Deron Harden :-(
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ok, i am confused. 1600v-twin is asking about fuel processors, so i am assuming that his bike is fuel injected. but at the same time everyone is talking about problems with this choke ? i was under the impression that the choke on the FI bikes isn't a choke at all but more of a high idle switch. if this is true, then it wouldn't affect the bike like he is seeing, is that correct ? i am just curious, as i am no mechanic, but i thought i was begining to understang this stuff.
 

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The choke-type knob is an "idle assist". I only open it a little to start it & after a couple seconds, the bike settles into a smooth idle. The FI system takes care of everything else. However, it is wise to NOT create a high idle on a bike that's been sitting awhile, though. The oil will not have had a chance to make it to all the upper end parts and damage may result.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Will the Power Commander lean the a/f mix? and would i better off waiting til i put the hypercharger on then go with the power commander. I just cant figure this stuff out and as luck would have it theres 15 inches of fresh powder outside so a test ride would be a little dangerous. Thanks for all your input so far, i guess my main concern is what would cause it to run so rich, when everyone says it should be running lean with the pipes? I'm So Confused.
 

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You're running rich- so pour some sea foam in the gas tank to clean up the carbon deposits. The only thing running rich will hurt is your fuel economy.

The powercommander can tune your 1600 and is the only FI control that can lean out an engine. If you go this route, plan on taking the bike to a dyno to have a map made.

If you want to add a hypercharger add the powercommander at the same time and then get it tuned so you don't have to get it tuned twice. ;-)
 

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RIP Deron Harden :-(
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also, if money is an question. you can always add the power commander and just select a pre-set map that is close to what you have for exhaust. then, when you add the hypercharger, or whatever you do, you can change the map or have the bike dyno tuned at that point. just another way to do it if you can't purchase both at the same time.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thanks for the help guys. Heres what i found, i hooked up the exhaust gas analyzer, it shows the bike running balanced, both readings almost exactly the same, not too rich and not too lean, Phatboy mentioned carbon deposits and using an additive to the tank, im going to try this the last couple of time starting the bike no black smoke. The so called choke knob, which is just a fast idle switch was not out but it was mis adjusted and the idle was way too high, i couldnt lower the idle adjustment screw enough to get the idle down. readjusted it and got the idle down, she is runnin good. Cant test drive cause of snow, but i am anxious too. By the way ispeed what do you do with all the fi stuff when you add the hypercharger, and was it tough to install. Thanks again guys, John
 

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John
the install wasn't too hard at all. the hardest part for me was taking a dremel tool to my one month old bike. there is a crossover air tube that goes between the two covers that must be removed. you either have to cut it or remove the throttle bodies, hmmm, i guess i'll cut it ! i also had my tank off as i did the power commander at the same time. this made it a little easier, plus, less chance to hitting the tank with a tool while you are working. basically, i had to remove the air cleaner housings on both sides (yeah i know only one is the filter !) and some of the cold start hardware. all of this stuff just went into a box ! i have not decided yet what to do with the left side being empty, but there are a lot of choices out there. from there, the hypercharger bolts on pretty easy. there are some vacuum lines to hook up and i think some wires that unplug off of the cold start hardware that you are going to want to make sure you tape up REAL good and move out of the way. i guess some of the guys on here have made the mistake of not insulating these wires good enough and have received a rude awakening in the form of sparks ! other than that, it really is just a bolt-on type project. make sure you seat the filter properly before tightening the housing screws and it is a good idea to oil the filter prior to installation. seems like i wrote a lot, but it isn't bad at all.
 

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ispeed77 said:
there are some vacuum lines to hook up and i think some wires that unplug off of the cold start hardware that you are going to want to make sure you tape up REAL good and move out of the way. i guess some of the guys on here have made the mistake of not insulating these wires good enough and have received a rude awakening in the form of sparks !
That was me. I got no spark, I blew the fuse =(
The guys at Thunder helped me figure it out though :p
 

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Phatboy said:
That was me. I got no spark, I blew the fuse =(
The guys at Thunder helped me figure it out though :p
aww, just a blown fuse, that's not that exciting !!! hehe :grin:
 
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