Issue with cold start - but runs fine - VTXOA
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-06-2019, 11:34 PM Thread Starter
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Issue with cold start - but runs fine

Hi guys, I have come into a new to me bike and I’ve got a couple of questions which I’m hoping you can help me with before I try the dealership.

So I picked up a new to me 2003 VTX1300. Guy kept it in good shape (nice chrome, no rust, wasn’t the kind of guy to ride it into the ground). He had some upgrades, Kuryakun Hypercharger, Vance and Hines Big Shots and some other Kuryakun chrome goodies for show and ISO grips.

He was getting rid of it as he wasn’t riding anymore (only 200 km the year before) and his wife didn’t feel comfortable on it anymore (he was getting ready to retire). He stored it inside a garage all winter (as always) and covered it. Full tank of premium fuel with stabilizer, oil change prior to storage as well. The battery however hadn’t been trickled charged before I showed up.

He was able to start it but the couple of hours I was there didn’t give the battery enough juice that I felt comfortable riding home (which was a little more than 300 kms away – about 188 miles) so I bought a brand new battery.

The battery fired the starter no problem and the bike started but wouldn’t hold idle without keeping the throttle open a little. He didn’t use the choke – I asked as I would normally use the choke (it was a cool day and a little wet too – Atlantic Canada – so it was only 11 degrees Celsius). He said the shop told him with the Hypercharger to never use the choke – just fire it up, use the throttle and it should hold idle in a few minutes. Both the Big Shots and Hypercharger were installed in a shop – the jets from the Hypercharger were put in but he thinks it needs to be tuned – he said he would notice a backfire sometimes when letting off the throttle.

After a couple of minutes I eased it out of the driveway, still wouldn’t hold idle but about a mile down the road it would hold at a stop sign. Now I drove it home, no issues, 2 backfires on the highway when letting off the throttle to slow down in a couple of zones. Started fine after being warmed up and I was running at about 120km/hr and gave the throttle a snap and it would react instantly, no lagging. Really couldn’t be happier with the way it drove – BUT – I have that feeling that the cold start must be something wrong – possibly even easy to correct.

So first – I want to ask if anything jumps out at you now as possible issues?
Second – what I think I will do when I’m off work is the following; pull the plugs to check for fouling and remove the filter from the Hypercharger and cleaning/recharging with the K&N kit (not sure if he ever did it – or knew to do it). These two things alone I think could contribute to poor starting – also I might need to adjust idle, perhaps that alone could be a culprit
Third – should I play with the A/F? I think from what I read I should seat it (not too firmly) and then back off 2.5 turns.
Lastly – should I take it to the dealership and have them muck with it – I just hate spending money at the dealership for them to either a) do something simple I can do or b) tinker at a hourly rate.

The jets from the Hypercharger (that I can see) are: 65 pilot and 185 main. I’ve read people saying the 65 pilot was too large (they seem to be using 5 and they also seem to be going 200 main – should I look for a jet kit that will provide better performance?

Once it’s running it’s great and I love the ride (and sound) – but that cold start is really a pain in the tush.

Any help is greatly appreciated.

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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-08-2019, 05:22 PM
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These bikes are known to be "Cold Blooded".

I'd suggest pulling out the enricher (Choke) to start the bike.
As soon as it's running, push the choke in until you get a high idle.
After 30-45 seconds, see if you can push it in a little more, but still keep it running.
Rinse & repeat.

During cool/cold weather, I'd lose 1/4 t0 1/3 of my mileage due to having to warm the bike up.

Others will be along with other suggestions.


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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-08-2019, 06:59 PM
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I would start by using the choke. Dealer is full of crap.
Also, your bike takes regular gas, not "premium"
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-08-2019, 11:21 PM Thread Starter
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Appreciate all the insight guys. I wasn't able to ride again due to weather (cold, heavy rain and miserable), but after about 48 hours I figured I'd see what would happen before I started any maintenance. First push - fired right up, feathered the throttle a few times and she held fine. Went for a nice ride with the daughter who's newly licensed and had no issues at all (except it was a shorter ride than I would have liked lol).

Still plan to do the maintenance (plugs/air filter), picked up a can of Seafoam too just to be proactive.

Donnie - had read that the lower compression in the 1300 only needs an octane of around 86, sometimes the gas on some of the backroads isn't the best so I'll use the 91. I've read about a 50/50 split that says the ethanol mix makes a difference for them - the 91 is the only one around here that's not mixed. As long as it runs - I'm happy lol.

1992 VT600 VLX Shadow - Candy Glory Red
1997 VT1100 Shadow Spirit - Gloss Black
2003 VTX1300C - Pearl Chromium Purple (Illusion Blue)
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-09-2019, 10:34 AM
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I use the "Starter Enrichment" valve aka choke year round at cold start.
Instructions from Owner's Manual
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File Type: jpg Choke use.jpg (247.0 KB, 7 views)

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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-12-2019, 05:30 PM
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Turning out my air fuel mixture screw a half turn fixed my x . in warm weather my first start of the day doesn't even need to use the enricher. Eo
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-19-2019, 09:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ronin_HFX View Post

Donnie - had read that the lower compression in the 1300 only needs an octane of around 86, sometimes the gas on some of the backroads isn't the best so I'll use the 91. I've read about a 50/50 split that says the ethanol mix makes a difference for them - the 91 is the only one around here that's not mixed. As long as it runs - I'm happy lol.
Backroad or not, you're doing more harm than good by using the incorrect octane fuel. It has nothing to with Premium being better. In fact, more vehicle use the lowest octane fuel so that tank in the ground at the station gets new fuel much more often than the premium filled tanks. So, the lowest octane is always going to be fresher than the premium.

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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-19-2019, 12:43 PM
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Here's my routine for a cold start:

Pull choke out only long enough to start the bike, then push choke back in and at the same time i turn the throttle until its idling at 1000 rpms on my tachometer and lock down my throttle lock. leave it like that while i put on my helmet and gloves and attach MP3 player (about 1 min), get on the bike, flip off the throttle lock and i'm ready to go.
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-19-2019, 02:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VTXArizona View Post
Here's my routine for a cold start:

Pull choke out only long enough to start the bike, then push choke back in and at the same time i turn the throttle until its idling at 1000 rpms on my tachometer and lock down my throttle lock. leave it like that while i put on my helmet and gloves and attach MP3 player (about 1 min), get on the bike, flip off the throttle lock and i'm ready to go.
Have you tried not using the choke, and start off by twisting the throttle once before starting (if sitting for a while), then follow your regular steps from "turn the throttle until..."?

I have mine dyno jetted, so perhaps this might be why, but I do not need the choke at all.
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 06-19-2019, 03:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JPT View Post
Have you tried not using the choke, and start off by twisting the throttle once before starting (if sitting for a while), then follow your regular steps from "turn the throttle until..."?

I have mine dyno jetted, so perhaps this might be why, but I do not need the choke at all.
Just tried your suggested method above and it worked, no choke. Bike behaved just like my orig routine.
The bike was "cold" from yesterday.
Thanks, i'll try not using the choke anymore from now on.
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