Last ditch effort to solve starting problem.... - VTXOA
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-18-2019, 11:10 PM Thread Starter
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Last ditch effort to solve starting problem....

I am about ready to sell this bike. Once it is running, it is great. I love it.....BUT IF IT WONT START DEPENDABLY!!!!!!! the bike does me no good. Neighbor almost has me convinced to go to a harley.......almost. 2006 Honda VTX 1300c with 15k.

I have tried every possible starting combination. Full choke, and leave it. Starts right up. It dies after about 45 seconds, and wont start again. Full choke, then back it off to half or less... Starts right up. Dies after about 45 seconds and refuses to start again. Full choke, then back off, then give it gas while feathering choke to full off and keeping RPMs up,....dies in about 45 seconds, and wont start again.... No choke. Crank throttle two or three times, then hit ignition...starts right up, dies after about 45 seconds and refuses to start again. I have tried every variation of this routine I can think of. Always dies after about 45 seconds, and refuses to start again for several hours.

2 days ago it was 67 degrees (f) outside. Used the choke. Started right up. Dialed the choke back to just less than half. Seemed to be running fine. Let it go while I grabbed my helmet. RPMs suddenly dialed back off without my changing anything. Tried to get to it to give it some gas. Died before I could get there. Refused to start again.

Yesterday, gave it full choke, and just left the full choke. Died after about 45 seconds, and refused to start again.

Today, 75 degrees outside. Twisted the throttle twice, hit ignition. Started right up. No choke. Tried to use throttle to keep RPM up, but will only allow a tiny bit of throttle when cold. Died after 45 seconds.

I have changed the plugs. Brand new ones. Properly spaced. I know the fuel system is vacuum. Tubes all look OK. Same reaction when a jump box is hooked to it, after it has failed to start....battery is in great condition. Cleaned all the connections.

Yesterday, when it refused to start, I tried to push start it. It didnt work, and I had run the battery down to almost empty trying to start it. After giving up on the push start(I'm not on a hill. I was sweating), I gave the ignition one last crank. It was the last one it had left in it before the battery died entirely. It started. And allowed me to give gas, and kept running.

WHAT ON EARTH IS GOING ON HERE????

Today, it hadn't been started in about 16 hours. Twisted the throttle twice, started right up. Tried to feather throttle to keep her up. She died after about 45 seconds. No choke. Refused to start again. This time, I sprayed some starter fluid in the carb breather. She started right up and kept going this time(this is after almost killing the battery again, trying to use the starter). Thats the first time I tried starter fluid. And it worked.

Someone please tell me why this bike wont start on its own. I love it, but I have no use for a bike that WONT START!

I have checked/changed all oil in the bike, engine and crank. New Plugs. Been running Marvels through it, when its running. Full tank of brand new, high octane gas(93). Have run at least 3 full tanks through it(when it finally starts, I ride it). Petcock is in correct position. Has the same starting response whether in run or reserve, always dies after about 45 seconds. Have tried both ways. Have detached/re-attached/lubed the vacuum tube on the petcock. Other rubber on the bike is not cracked or messed up. The vent tube that runs off the bottom right side of the tank is in good shape. No cracks or dry-wrought. Kill switch is obviously in run position. Bike is in neutral. Kickstand position has no impact. Also, clutch position has no impact.

This is my last ditch effort. I am putting a for sale sign on it, if it wont start dependably. I love this bike......when it will freaking start. It starts dependably for the rest of the day, any time I can get it to start the first time. It never has an issue, after the first start. If I can get it to run for 2 minutes, it runs great for the rest of the day. If I cant get it to run for those first two minutes, it doesnt run at all. My poor starter is probably hating me. But it is still working.

I am in New Albany Indiana. 47150. And am open to meeting with someone who can tell me what the heck is going on here. And can pay. Not a ton, but still........

2006 Honda VTX1300c
15,000 Miles
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-19-2019, 03:28 PM
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Vacuum hoses crack on the inside of the hose. Check and probably change all vacuum hoses.

Remove gas line to carb at petcock, apply vacuum to petcock port, you should see a good stream of gas.
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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-19-2019, 05:04 PM
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Air, spark, fuel. You have air, and spark because it starts. You need to verify the fuel. Following your symptoms, I'd say you are running the carb out of fuel. As Has says, verify you have a good stream of fuel to the carb. If you do then you may have blockage in the carb. Most likely though you have a blocked filter or blocked petcock. You cannot always assume a hose is good because it looks good. I'd start with the petcock vacuum hose. Just replace it with bulk hose from the auto parts store. If that solves you problem, or changes how things act, just replace all vacuum hoses. They are 13 years old and don't owe you a dime anymore. A couple of bucks and an afternoon, and ride it like you own it.
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-19-2019, 05:40 PM
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In the carb hose bib is a small filter, check it,
Is there any history or being parked for a half year or longer?
Stock air box or aftermarket???

Low compression engine, 87 octane is what Honda suggests and thousands of others use.

Low mileage but 12 years. Rubber deteriorates...

Honda shows pulling choke aka Starter Enrichment out all the way, crank, then after running push it in some for high idle.
I do that and at 1/2 mile from house or so when in 3rd or 4th gear I close Choke.
The Choke does not have a good transition to off and will die quickly at idle, that is why I delay the Choke closure.

What do your spark plugs look like???

Tank vent - you said it was good, can you blow air into it with gas cap open??

Some have had issues with the petcock... Seemed like a vacuum lock and no gas flow.. Heffly went with a Pingel I believe.
There is a thread on flipping a spring in petcock to the other side of the diaphragm to make it full manual.
Always worth a try..
The vacuum is too prevent fuel flow when engine off. A safety feature. A petcock cover kit is available.
Google this for threads, two shown below> vtxoa: heffly petcock
https://www.vtxoa.com/forums/7-vtx-1...t-petcock.html
https://www.vtxoa.com/forums/7-vtx-1...ring-size.html
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Last edited by Hans&Feet; 04-19-2019 at 08:31 PM. Reason: Added more info...
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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-19-2019, 07:28 PM
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Sounds like a bad petcock.

Put the Marvel's down and back away from the bike.
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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-19-2019, 08:10 PM
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Marvel is not a cleaner.... never was...

15k.. poor bike.... its a project .. not going well
3 years of riding... over 14 plus years... major sitting....real bad...

my opinion...

rubber rotted... carb clogged.. plastic "T" cracks...

think as a mechanic.. not as an owner...

as stated.
fuel.. good and does it flow well
air.. no restrictions into engine...
Vacuum... no leaks...
compression...
spark.. strong and on the correct time.

in that short list is your problem.. 1 or all..

frustration is a BAD thing as a mechanic.

it STOP's you from troubleshooting clearly.

50 years as a mechanic... Retired.
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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-19-2019, 08:15 PM
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One possible issue not talked about in previous posts is the carb's slow jet. The holes in the slow jet may be clogged. This jet controls the engine's idling. When the holes in this jet become clogged over time with stale fuel the bike's engine will run but won't hold a steady idle. Remove the carb bowl and using a screwdriver replace the slow jet with a new one.
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-19-2019, 08:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DarkShadow View Post
One possible issue not talked about in previous posts is the carb's slow jet. The holes in the slow jet may be clogged. This jet controls the engine's idling. When the holes in this jet become clogged over time with stale fuel the bike's engine will run but won't hold a steady idle. Remove the carb bowl and using a screwdriver replace the slow jet with a new one.
Maybe but, if so, it should start or at least sound like it's trying to start. And if you keep the revs up it should continue to run, albeit like crap.


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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-19-2019, 08:27 PM
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I just changed the petcock on my 2003. The screen inside was so corroded that it was falling apart. Petcock is easy to replace. I'd also replace fuel filter. Suggest seafoam in the fuel. My 2 cents. Good luck.

Gary
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-19-2019, 08:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gmarshall View Post
I just changed the petcock on my 2003. The screen inside was so corroded that it was falling apart. Petcock is easy to replace. I'd also replace fuel filter. Suggest seafoam in the fuel. My 2 cents. Good luck. Gary
Gary the 2003 1300S was the only year 1300 that has an electric fuel pump.
Some have failed, the conversion to gravity flow is the best thing to do when the fuel pump dies.
The addition of the 2004 and up vacuum petcock would be a good add when the FP dies.
Either that or manual shutoff when parked. May only be from extreme lean angles.
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2005 1300c Red, Mustang seat, HK 2.5 straights. Leds for safety-front & back. 190,260 VTX miles
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