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Discussion Starter #1
It seems like a lot of people, including myself, are having trouble getting their bikes to start and stay running. In my case it seems like I'm due for a good carb cleaning. I am not familiar enough with working on engines to attempt this myself, but I have a few questions I'm hoping someone can help me with:

1. Given that this is the problem, how much labor is involved to correctly clean the carbs?

2. I have been considering having a jet kit installed, is this the perfect time to do so? Will the labor be more/less/same intensive to just have a kit installed?

3. Will installing a jet kit help prevent the carbs getting clogged up or accelerate it?

4. Other than trying to avoid crappy gas, what can be done to prevent this from happening?

Also, I had my valves and carbs tuned two years ago (about 12K miles ago)

Thanks in advance,
Nate
 

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nsgood82 said:
It seems like a lot of people, including myself, are having trouble getting their bikes to start and stay running. In my case it seems like I'm due for a good carb cleaning. I am not familiar enough with working on engines to attempt this myself, but I have a few questions I'm hoping someone can help me with:

1. Given that this is the problem, how much labor is involved to correctly clean the carbs?

2. I have been considering having a jet kit installed, is this the perfect time to do so? Will the labor be more/less/same intensive to just have a kit installed?

3. Will installing a jet kit help prevent the carbs getting clogged up or accelerate it?

4. Other than trying to avoid crappy gas, what can be done to prevent this from happening?

Also, I had my valves and carbs tuned two years ago (about 12K miles ago)

Thanks in advance,
Nate
1. Most of the labor is involved in removing the carbs from the bike. You have to remove the tank, airbox, disconnect the choke and throttle cables, fuel lines, and two coolant lines. That's the time consuming part...cleaning them is easy.

2. Now would be the perfect time to install a jetkit.... I would say maybe 30 minutes extra time/labor to install the kit.

3. Neither.

4. Did the bike set up over the winter? Did you add any fuel stabilizer to the tank or drain the float bowls? Also, when was the last time you changed the fuel filter?

RR319
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I currently have the tank off, so that should save a little time...
it only sat for a month or so at a time over winter, I rode it now and then. I did add fuel stabilizer. Negative on the float bowls (I don't know what a float bowl is).

To my knowledge, the fuel filter has never been changed.

Once I removed the tank from the bike (there was a cylinder with two hoses connected, one from the gas, one to the carbs. Is this the filter?)I verified that I had a good flow of gas out of the line. There is some sort of filter between the hose on the section I removed from the bike, however.

As for the jet kit.... I currently have a two brothers slip on. Would adding jets really increase my performance? I am not going to spend the money on having it tuned with a dyno. Would I be better off just leaving it the way it is? I'm about due to have my valves checked anyway.

Thanks
 

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nsgood82 said:
I currently have the tank off, so that should save a little time...
it only sat for a month or so at a time over winter, I rode it now and then. I did add fuel stabilizer. Negative on the float bowls (I don't know what a float bowl is).

To my knowledge, the fuel filter has never been changed.

Once I removed the tank from the bike (there was a cylinder with two hoses connected, one from the gas, one to the carbs. Is this the filter?)I verified that I had a good flow of gas out of the line. There is some sort of filter between the hose on the section I removed from the bike, however.

As for the jet kit.... I currently have a two brothers slip on. Would adding jets really increase my performance? I am not going to spend the money on having it tuned with a dyno. Would I be better off just leaving it the way it is? I'm about due to have my valves checked anyway.

Thanks
If you remove the tail section (the plastic around the seat) the fuel pump and filter will be visible from the left side of the bike. The fuel pump is attached to the subframe by a rubber mount. It has 2 fuel lines connected to it, one line will have the fuel filter on it, about 4 or 5 inches from the pump. It's made from white plastic.

If you are happy with the performance of the bike, I would just have the carbs cleaned and the filter replaced. I believe there is also a strainer/filter on the inside of the tank on the fuel petcock (the on/off/reserve valve) it can be removed and cleaned.

-RR319
 

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Ok... I just cleaned my carbs on my ex500... This is my second go around at this so here's some of my tips.

First off you don't need to remove all thoes cables and hoses(from the carbs), just the four major hoses on the front and back of the carbs, and disconect any hoses that may be on top of the carbs. I didn't need to remove my air box, but I have a Kawi.
From there you should be able to pull them out and flip them upside down to remove the "float bowls" There are the semi bowl shaped things on the bottom of the carbs. Some brass screws should be mounting them on. Replace thoes screws with allenheads, much easier to work with and less stripping with older bikes. Ok remove the bowls whish may or may not be still filled with gas. There are jets inside there you can remove and clean. Clean everything with brake or carb cleaner and brush. Check your rubber gaskets for and shrinking or dry rotting, replace if neccessary. Then reinstall everything.

I can't help you with jet kits, but an inline fuel filter replacement is a good idea. But if you do put in a jet kit, I believe you have to get your carbs re-synct.

Took me about 2 hours, and I knew what I was doing with a friend helping.

Invest in a service manual ASAP. It'll tell you what alll thoes mystery hoses are. But don't follow every step they give sometimes it's more work that it's worth.

To drain your float bowls for winter storage. There is a srcrew on the bottom of each float bowl, near a nipple like thingy. Slighly unscrew this screw and out will drain gas from each bowl... You need to shut your petcock off to drain the fuel out, or it will just keep running out of your tank. I have two float bowls aka two screws to drain from.

Oh and if you need help take a ride up to Penn State, I'll be around.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
squaly, thanks for all the suggestions. I don't have a garage to work on my bike and I don't have much experience with this sort of thing, so I'm just taking it to the shop for a tune up and inspection. I appreciate you sharing though. I'll have to look into draining the bowls from now on.

next time I head up to your area i'll send you a message.

thanks,
Nate
 
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