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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi,

I purchased a used 1991 Kawi Eliminator 250 E1 a couple of weeks ago. At first, it started no problem but within a few days, I noticed a couple of things. The engine would stall out very easily with the clutch fully disengaged and the brake on; so as I'm coming to a stop, I'd need to quickly give a little throttle to keep it from stalling.

Then I was sitting on the bike with the ignition in the 'on' position for a few minutes. Of course, I must have left the lights on and so the battery died. Spouse got it going again much later in the day.

Bike as not been ridden in several days due to high winds and rain. When I got on it this morning, after checking to make sure all was well with the bike, I attempted to start it. I made sure I was in neutral, ignition to 'on', choke open completely, clutch disengaged, kickstand up, kill switch to 'run', lots of gas and oil.
I could hear that the engine wanted to turn over as it was sputtering but it just wouldn't catch even giving it a touch of throttle. I didn't want to kill the battery again so I only gave it one or two more tries. Could this be spark-plug trouble or battery maybe? Or maybe bad newbie karma...lol
 

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I'm a little confused with your problem description. In the latter part of your post you say, "I could hear that the engine wanted to turn over as it was sputtering but it just wouldn't catch even giving it a touch of throttle". Are you trying to say that it was in fact turning over but it wouldn't fire/start? Saying that an engine 'wanted to turn over' is descriptive of a weak or dying battery. If the engine was turning over but wouldn't fire, and your problems have progressed from a fully running machine to where it is now, I would say you need to look at the most important things needed to run..............spark and fuel. Simply buying new plugs might not do it as there is much more to delivering a spark than just plugs. Pull a plug and ground it to the engine block. Try and start the bike and look for a spark at the gap of the plug. Report what you find. On the bottom of your carbs there is a screw that will allow you to drain fuel from the float bowls. Do this as well and report back. Go back and check all the simple things and then check them again. Kill switch, fuses, full tank of fuel and the petcock in the proper position.
Talk with your spouse as it sounds like they were the last person to get it running. See if they did something. Again, check all the normal common things before getting into carb cleanings and or parts replacement. Good luck.
 

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On top of Kimsmiths sound advice, but before you get into that, IF it is spinning on the starter but not firing try a couple or three 3-5 second bursts with the throttle wide-open.
It might just be flooded due to you using unecessary choke, it does happen, some older bikes are warm-blooded enough not to need full choke :)

Good luck Scamper (great name)
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thank you for the detailed advice. I just wanted to give a bit of an update. I think there may be two problems which is why my first post seemed confusing.

I finally got the bike started and here's the story about that:
When the spouse had tried it, it had sat all day in the sun so I tried once in the cold morning with no luck. In the late afternoon when everything was warm and dry, I tried again. It worked. I've described below how I did it.

This time I put the choke open only halfway and it started pretty easily. Then it stalled. I repeated the starting sequence above, again with the choke open half-way, except this time when I got it going, I opened the choke the rest of the way. This seemed to work and I let 'er idle for a good few minutes and then closed the choke.

This is when the second issue comes into play. I put it into gear and started to engage the clutch. Instant stall. Tried again and the same thing happened.
Once the bike was up and running, it did stall again at a traffic light.

Any thoughts on:
1) whether the weather/dampness played a factor in it not starting
2) opening the choke halfway at first
3)the stalling issue.

My plan was to take the bike to the mechanic to test the battery first. Before I do that, I will check the electrolyte levels. There is some sulfate on the battery itself. Does this mean anything?

I haven't forgotten your advice about the plugs or the float bowls but I have to check that stuff when it's warm out since I haven't a garage.
 

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Having the clutch adjusted properly to the shop manual specs is one thing I'd do first. What weight/type of engine oil is being used? Most "Car Oils" have friction modifiers in them not compatable with our bike's wet plate clutches(More information in the following article).

Best Oils To Use In Your Bike

Engine oil : The commercial grade oils are clearly superior to the mass market oils. For the best protection in your bike or car, use Shell Rotella Synthetic, available at Wal-Mart in blue containers . For the best petroleum oil you can buy, get Shell Rotella T, Mobil Delvac 1300, or Chevron Delo 400, available at any auto parts store. On the back of most oil cans is a circular stamp with the certification. Avoid oils that say "energy conserving" in the bottom half of the donut. These oils contain friction modifier additives that could cause clutch slipping over time. All XXw-20 and XXw-30 oils are energy conserving, and should not be used in your motorcycle. Don't buy any oil additives like STP or Slick-50. Here's several pages All About Oil justifying these conclusions.

The Recommended Synthetic Oils:
Shell Rotella Synthetic
5w-40 Delvac 1 Synthetic
5w-40 Mobil-1 SUV/Truck Synthetic
5w-40 AMSOil AMF Synthetic
10w-40 Golden Spectro Synthetic
10w-50 Motul 5100 Synthetic
10w-40 Mobil-1 Synthetic
15w-50 Mobil-1 MX4T Synthetic

The best synthetics are: (in no particular order)

Shell Rotella-T Synthetic 5w-40 (blue container, not white), gallon at Wal-Mart.
Mobil Delvac-1 5w-40 (grey container, not black), gallon at Petro stations, gallon at Farm and Fleet.
Mobil-1 SUV 5w-40, qt anywhere.
AMSOil AMF 10w-40 synthetic motorcycle oil, about qt.
Golden Spectro Supreme, (no price).
Motul 5100 Ester, (no price).

Mobil-1 automotive oils all contain small amounts of moly - about 100 to 200 ppm. This can cause clutch slippage in some motorcycles. I've only heard of this being a problem in Honda Shadows.

For temperatures below -40, I strongly recommend either Mobil-1 0w-30 or the Canadian Shell 0w-40 Rotella. At these temperatures, your car is your life. Using cheap or incorrect oil is risking your life.

For temperatures below -55c, -65f, stay home. Really.

The Recommended Petroleum Oils:

Chevron Delo 400 15w-40
Delvac 1300 15w-40
Shell Rotella 15w-40

The best petroleum oils are: (in no particular order)

Chevron Delo 400 15w-40 (blue container) gallon at any auto parts store, gallons at Costco.

Mobil Delvac 1300 15w-40 (black container) gallon at any auto parts store, gallons at Sam's Club.

Shell Rotella-T 15w-40 (white container) gallon at Wall-Mart or any auto parts store, gallons at Sam's Club.

If you live in another country, you'll have to do a bit of research to decide on an oil. Generally, any oil certified for use in a late model Volkswagon or Mercedes turbo diesel is a good choice. Another good idea is to go to a truck stop and ask the truckers about brands. Rotella is marketed all over the world, but in other countries it's called Rotella or Rimola or Helix Ultra, and the formulation may be a bit different, depending on local climate and preferences. It will likely also be a lot more expensive than it is here.
 

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Is the stalling condition consistent? Does it stall each and every time you try and move or is it intermittent?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Sorry for the long delay. I was away for a few weeks but have returned to let you know that it seems the stalling issue is resolved. It turns out that the mechanic who worked on the bike last did some 'jerry-rigging' in order to avoid costly repairs to the carbs. He reset the idling speed higher. My husband put the speed where it's supposed to be. I told the husband: 'No touchy the buttons!' :p
It's working fine now. Well, at least as good as it's going to get unless I fork out big bucks! Thanks for the help.
 
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