Why isn’t my Bike starting? - Ex-500.com - The home of the Kawasaki EX500 / Ninja 500R
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post #1 of 27 (permalink) Old 9-16-2019, 3:51 AM Thread Starter
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Why isn’t my Bike starting?

I was pointed to this forum by another forum, so I thought I’d ask here too.

The GPZ has been in the Garage for almost 8 years, it’s a 2003 model, and only done 6000 miles.

I changed the spark plugs, the petrol and I’ve kept the battery charged, it still provides enough power after all this time.

https://streamable.com/2thcb


The Bike just does this, come to the conclusion it’s the Carb. However I wanted to ask here before I did anything. It’ll start with the choke open only, however it then stops after a second or two. With the throttle open or choke off, it’ll do nothing.

Also the Throttle moves back and forth, but it doesn’t spring back, it just stays to the position you moved it to. Wondering how you fix that?


Thanks.
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post #2 of 27 (permalink) Old 9-16-2019, 8:49 AM
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Undeniable sitting 8 years the carbs need a *comprehensive* clean, new consumables (orings and float valves) and proper setup.
I'd urge to refurb the petcock as well.
If the battery is 8 YO....replace it.
Those would be obvious beginning points. Really no need for debate or delay, these are automatics.

In the UK...seek out member "john" on the Brit GPZ forum, well capable of performing a carb refurb "over there".

ďBeing shot out of a cannon will always be better than being squeezed out of a tube. That is why God made fast motorcycles, Bubba....Ē quote Hunter S Thompson

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post #3 of 27 (permalink) Old 9-16-2019, 9:10 AM
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Hi Brexit,
Where in UK are you?
I just bought an ultrasonic cleaner to do mine.
M&P do the carb refurb kits pretty cheap.
If you are close bring the Carbs round one day and I can sort em for you for a budget price.
They can be sorted in 2 hrs tops.
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post #4 of 27 (permalink) Old 9-16-2019, 3:18 PM
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Throttle cables need to be oiled. Disconnect from carbs and aim free ends upwards. Drip oil down cable and twist throttle full stroke from closed to WOT to work oil down cable. Add more oil, twist throttle some more. Add oil, twist, etc...

As for carbs, they need complete disassembly into individual components. Soak in ultrasonic cleaner in radioactive caustic solvents for couple months. Then all holes in all jets and passages ways need to be scrubbed and flossed with appropriate sized wire. Finally clear out with micro soda-blasting @ 100000psi.
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post #5 of 27 (permalink) Old 9-16-2019, 5:18 PM
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And here I've only been using 10,000 psi all along

Beyond cable binding, its conceivable the carb throttle shafts are binding, too, gotta be evaluated for sure...for safety safe. I'd disassemble, clean and lightly lube the throttle/handlebar area too.

Looking beyond to a bike sitting 8 years, automatic new tires, brake disc/caliper service? new fluid/bleeding minimum, full lube of every moving pivot point where applicable, inspect inner tank for surface rust....more and more....front to rear...a ton o' stuff to be considered and addressed prior to putting the bike into actual service.

Resist the temptation to simply jump on and ride until all above (and more) have been deemed operational and safe.

ďBeing shot out of a cannon will always be better than being squeezed out of a tube. That is why God made fast motorcycles, Bubba....Ē quote Hunter S Thompson

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post #6 of 27 (permalink) Old 9-17-2019, 3:14 AM Thread Starter
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I’m in between Luton and Bedford, however I’m choosing this Bike because I ran out of Money, moved back in with my parents, and it’s cheap lol. My GSXR750 is being sold cause I still owe money, so I have to use this one.

So fixing it all depends on cost.

Last edited by Brexit; 9-17-2019 at 3:18 AM.
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post #7 of 27 (permalink) Old 9-17-2019, 3:21 AM Thread Starter
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All in good conditions though, everything is original.
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post #8 of 27 (permalink) Old 9-17-2019, 9:25 AM
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Quote:
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Iím in between Luton and Bedford, however Iím choosing this Bike because I ran out of Money, moved back in with my parents, and itís cheap lol. My GSXR750 is being sold cause I still owe money, so I have to use this one.

So fixing it all depends on cost.
Other than tires, most of these repairs can be done for very little money if you have the knowledge and the time. Even then, tires on these bikes are a fraction of the cost of superbike tires. You will, however, pay handsomely for a dealer or mechanic to do them for you.

I got into motorcycles because I couldn't afford a car. I got into bike maintenance and repair because I couldn't afford a mechanic, and because I was sick of using the bus.

Seems like the stars have aligned to teach you some new skills....and this site has members to help on that journey. I wish I had the internet back when I first started....

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2000 Kawasaki KDX 200
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post #9 of 27 (permalink) Old 9-17-2019, 6:37 PM
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One thing not mentioned is that the throttle will not return properly if the cables are misadjusted. Also, fair warning; virtually everyone we see here who attempts to service their carburetors ends up doing it multiple times. They're very simple, but they're unforgiving. Air travels through the tiny passageways up to 300mph. One little nick in a jet or passageway can cause issues, and they need to be thoroughly clean. The fuel level in the float bowls needs to be right. Float needles need to seal properly and floats properly adjusted.

I'm not saying you shouldn't try, but if you have a competent forum member nearby who offers to get them right for a bargain price you might be wise to seriously consider it.
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post #10 of 27 (permalink) Old 9-18-2019, 3:52 AM Thread Starter
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Yeah I’m thinking about selling it tbh, I met a mechanic near me and he said Petrol today has so much crap in it, I’ll need to get it Ultrasonic cleaned. He said I’ll be forever trying to clean it otherwise and it’ll never work properly.

I work full time and on weekends, so it’s just not worth it for me. I was hoping it would be a simple job of putting wb40 in it and spraying it out or something.
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post #11 of 27 (permalink) Old 9-18-2019, 10:00 PM
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If you can, try running off an auxiliary fuel tank- since the tank and/or petcock might be contributing to the poor running.
You have nothing to lose by trying to clean the carbs, but unless you're somewhat experienced, they're better left to Sump Plug and the ultra sonic cleaner... it really does the best possible job of cleaning them. That being said, if you do have enough experience to remove them and open them up, using carb cleaner, compressed air and a fine wire or guitar string for the pilot jets, you should be able to get her running at least enough to see if it's worth fixing or better off selling. With 6000 miles, i'd wager a set of carb rebuild kits it's worth saving.

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post #12 of 27 (permalink) Old 9-19-2019, 6:24 AM
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ultimately what you do with your bike is up to you. and unfortunately here in the UK there isn't the support group there is in the states so your pretty much on your own, [unless there is someone close who can help] but the good news is these bike are quite reliable once the gremlins have been eliminated. one of mine has now near 80k on it and still runs well.
the carbs have never been near any kind of sonic whatever is it type of cleaner so the fuel additives are not that much of an issue if there done right. it takes time and effort to do the carbs. most just think a quick remove, spray with carb cleaner on the internals. set the floats with a measuring stick and bung them back on will do. and then wonder why they still have carb issues.

done right there is no reason the home mechanic with a couple of repair kits a few basic tools and time cannot get them working correctly. the GPZ/EX 500 was never a popular bike over here. as the CC fell right into the gap between small and big bikes. so got overlooked to how good these machines really are. once running properly they will run forever and put a smile on your face everyday your riding.
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post #13 of 27 (permalink) Old 9-19-2019, 9:16 AM
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Your intended level of intensity going in dictates methods and procedures. A functional clean is worlds different from a full, restorative clean.

The naive "open the bowls and spray" and "carbs are easy, you can do it" internet forum/Facebook cheering section have historically misguided folks....certainly not limited to EX500 folks.

The game is changing as carbed models are now clearly ageing...2, 3, 4 cylinder Mikuni, Keihin or otherwise...at a certain chosen point restoration is essential. ALL seals and gaskets require replacement, including rail seals which require intense rack splitting. Consumables, eventually those seals harden, crack and leak... were never intended to last forever. What is a reasonable replacement timeframe? 10 year? 15....20? 25? Safety MUST be considered. As its your ride...all according to your discretion.

Modern cleaning machines icing on the cake....offering efficiency on a consistent, repetitive basis.

remember...Clean Carbs Matter

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Last edited by Custom Carb Service; 9-19-2019 at 9:18 AM.
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post #14 of 27 (permalink) Old 9-19-2019, 4:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Custom Carb Service View Post
Your intended level of intensity going in dictates methods and procedures. A functional clean is worlds different from a full, restorative clean.

The naive "open the bowls and spray" and "carbs are easy, you can do it" internet forum/Facebook cheering section have historically misguided folks....certainly not limited to EX500 folks.

The game is changing as carbed models are now clearly ageing...2, 3, 4 cylinder Mikuni, Keihin or otherwise...at a certain chosen point restoration is essential. ALL seals and gaskets require replacement, including rail seals which require intense rack splitting. Consumables, eventually those seals harden, crack and leak... were never intended to last forever. What is a reasonable replacement timeframe? 10 year? 15....20? 25? Safety MUST be considered. As its your ride...all according to your discretion.

Modern cleaning machines icing on the cake....offering efficiency on a consistent, repetitive basis.
yes I agree. that is basically what I said only in a more professional manner. it is just that over here there is no ducatiman to turn to if your not able to complete a reasonable clean and carb setup yourself.
personally I would love a set of Duc's carbs I saw the blue ones he did for a UK member, truly amazing. but I would probably have to sell my house to get some. or get a second mortgage to buy a new set from Kawasaki. but on a 30 year old high mileage bike that's probably worth less than ONE carb rather pointless.

going back to the OP with a small word of warning, if you think getting a bike right after it has been stood 8years for no money your in for a shock. minimum required. strip down of rear end unitrack. new chain [if sprockets are good] new oil and filter coolant flush, new coolant. new battery. carb clean and refurb [as above] new air filter. brake overhaul front and back with new fluid. and anything else that is not up to serviceable condition like cables and switches. not forgetting the rodents nest in the air box, yeah I have been there a few times.
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post #15 of 27 (permalink) Old 9-19-2019, 5:11 PM
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Not to mention you'll most likely need new tyres as well.

Shipping is not that prohibitive with U.S. I just sent Motec M800 auto EFI system w/harness to UK for about U$30. About 2kg, similar to carbs.
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post #16 of 27 (permalink) Old 9-19-2019, 5:39 PM
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Originally Posted by DannoXYZ View Post
Not to mention you'll most likely need new tyres as well.

Shipping is not that prohibitive with U.S. I just sent Motec M800 auto EFI system w/harness to UK for about U$30. About 2kg, similar to carbs.
now that surprises me. I wanted a replacement RR for the fake one I got. none available here but found one in the US. cost of part [used] $20 shipping $55 almost 3x what the part cost. I got one from Germany [inside the EU] for 15euros post free.
sorry for the thread jack just saying,
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post #17 of 27 (permalink) Old 9-19-2019, 6:17 PM
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I supposed it's based upon where package originates from that determines cost. There's some sort of fee arrangement between two county's post-offices. I just sent 18kg package to Slovakia for about USD $190. Recently tried to buy some JDM auto-parts from Poland and shipping for 5kg package would be over USD$100. In past decade, shipping from China has dropped tremendously, only 10% of what it used to cost. I had some custom auto electronics designed in NZ, made in China, and shipped to my shop in California.

Yep, I agree that thinking bike that's sat for 8-yrs can be revived for no costs is not realistic. However, I wanted to point out that it's not terribly expensive to ship carbs across pond for full restoration job, but rates appear to vary greatly.

Last edited by DannoXYZ; 9-19-2019 at 6:20 PM.
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post #18 of 27 (permalink) Old 9-19-2019, 8:06 PM
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hi, not wanting to carry on with the thread jack. but I do remember those very same blue carbs were quite expensive to send no idea how much it was but several members kindly donated funds towards the cost of shipping. if you consider the cost of sending the carbs to the US, having them done and then the cost of return shipping. it would probably be too expensive for most to consider.

but on another thought. to make a good job easier. you can buy comprehensive kits that contain not only the usual bits but new jets/needles the only thing to buy separate would be the diaphragms if damaged. although twice the price well worth it. and most clock repairers have ultra sonic cleaning equipment if they will do the carb bodies. just a thought.
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post #19 of 27 (permalink) Old 9-19-2019, 8:58 PM
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https://www.ex-500.com/50-carburetor...ght=blue+carbs

link to the old thread "Blue carbs for GPZ Paul", a very cool forum member effort, all based on donated parts and services.

I seem to recall 1 way shipping $85-90 USD, package about 4 pounds. Hence, I dissuade against back and forth shipping. However...another option is outright purchase of #70 for instance....requiring 1 way ship only.

https://www.ex-500.com/50-carburetor...bset-70-a.html

Be mindful of your VAT as well.

remember...Clean Carbs Matter

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post #20 of 27 (permalink) Old 10-10-2019, 6:07 AM Thread Starter
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So I took the tank off, took all the taps and what not off and it was all perfectly clean... but I cleaned them anyways. I found out the throttle was stuck slightly on, so I used a bit of force and got it all the way back, and it ran for a few seconds, but then wouldn’t again. So I got some Seafoam, turned it over, left it in there for a bit.. and it ran for a couple mins, it even would let me put on the throttle wide open.

However I had to turn it off because the plastic was melting at the bottom. I took it off, went to start it again, and it wouldn’t start..... 😕

The weird thing Is, it sounds like it’s turning over faster than it did.... maybe it’s just me, but I dunno.

So now I’m going to take the carb off to get ultrasonically cleaned.

What I don’t get though is it ran fine for awhile.... so why did it refuse to start after I turned it off? It’s worse than before, it doesn’t even attempt to spark now.
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post #21 of 27 (permalink) Old 10-10-2019, 12:43 PM
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Dried petrol varnish inside carb fuel-circuits is causing problems. "Cleaning" may have dislodged chunk and it works for bit. Then chunk moves and clogs different area of carbs. Spraying and soaking can only do so much. Most of cleaning effort needs to be physically scrubbing passages and flossing out holes with wire. Then micro soda-blasting. Here's examples of hidden passages that needs to be scrubbed and blasted after jets removed:




Emulsion-tube and jet bleed holes needs to be poked with wire of appropriate matching size. Punches out varnish plug similar to grains of sand.



Think of it as long garden-hose with spray-nozzle at end. A lot of people think that "cleaning" is just clearing out the nozzle. But you also have to clean entire length of hose as well. So start at beginning and trace flow of petrol: tank, petcock-filters, petcock, fuel-hose, fuel-hose filter, carb fuel-rail, float-valves, float-level, jets, air-jets, bleed-holes, fuel-circuits, venturi holes. Every single area needs to be perfectly clear and factory-fresh.

Last edited by DannoXYZ; 10-10-2019 at 12:47 PM.
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post #22 of 27 (permalink) Old 10-10-2019, 12:50 PM
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So now Iím going to take the carb off to get ultrasonically cleaned.
Good move, but they must be totally disassembled to accomplish, I'm sure you know that. Is the job being done by a carb specialist there?

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post #23 of 27 (permalink) Old 10-13-2019, 3:16 AM Thread Starter
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Right they wanted more than 100 quid, so forget that. And I dropped the Bike off the centre stand, and the side stand was flipped down... so that broke my foot.... all going well. Someone offered me £1000 because it’s in such good condition... I think I’ll take it and move on with my life.
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post #24 of 27 (permalink) Old 10-13-2019, 6:48 AM
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Right they wanted more than 100 quid, so forget that. And I dropped the Bike off the centre stand, and the side stand was flipped down... so that broke my foot.... all going well. Someone offered me £1000 because itís in such good condition... I think Iíll take it and move on with my life.
that's not a bad offer for a non running bike. shame about the foot. done that myself it stings, but there you go.

if you don't have the resources or time to fix it selling it may be your best option. however you will miss out on the prospect of riding probably the best underrated lightweight 500's out there, a bike that will put a smile on your face every time it's ridden.
I ride with guys who have much bigger bikes but are hardly ever the last one there. but then I am biased must be I have two of them.
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post #25 of 27 (permalink) Old 10-13-2019, 7:32 AM Thread Starter
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If I take it apart I’ll break it, and I’m not spending that money for a clean. I was hoping it was just an issue of fuel, battery and spark plugs.... but no. Plus everyone saying I’ll need new tyres and everything else.... it would become a money sink.

Plus I only have Sunday’s off, and I just like spending it sleeping when I can.

And It did actually fracture Bones in my foot, I got an X-ray and they just said to rest it... lol. I’ve actually owned a GPZ before, why I got this one. I remember doing the same thing, it breaking my Big Toe, now I have a massive bone growth in it. You’d think I would learn? Lol.

Anyways thanks for the help, I’m going to take the money and buy a 400 on Finance.
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