Weird stuff is happening with this bike... - - The home of the Kawasaki EX500 / Ninja 500R
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 2-16-2019, 9:05 PM Thread Starter
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Weird stuff is happening with this bike...

Hey everyone, I’m having some strange problems with the bike. A while ago I got this 06 while it wasn’t running and cleaned the carbs, after that it started right up. I emptied the gas from the tank and let it sit for a few months. I came back to start it up a few weeks ago and it wouldn’t go. I figured there must have been some residual gas that got left in there that had clogged up the carbs again. I have cleaned them twice now (and they are 100% clean). After I cleaned them The bike almost started but was leaking gas like crazy from the carbs. I went back in and adjusted the float bowl levels to 17mm in each bowl. I tried starting it again and noticed gas leaking from the petcock, but none from the carbs. The weird thing is I could start the bike, but only when the petcock was in the “OFF” position. It also started easier when the choke lever was in the down position. Today I put in a rebuild kit for the petcock and now no gas is leaking from the petcock, but there was a tiny amount leaking from the pilot screw area on the left carb. The bike still only starts with the petcock in the “OFF” position. When I can get it started the left tailpipe leaks gas. In order to get the bike started I had to crank it to WOT. When I take the throttle off, the bike dies. Also, the airbox now has small amounts of gas in it, and I noticed a small tube underneath the bike that I believe connects to the airbox, and it was dripping some gas. At this point I really don’t know what to fix next or where to go, any help is appreciated.
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 2-16-2019, 10:27 PM Thread Starter
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As an update, there is now more gas leaking from that hose that connects to the airbox that runs to the underside of the bike.
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 2-16-2019, 11:44 PM
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Despite your clean carb statement you have 2 problems. You peacock is no shutting off and your float valves are not sealing

Try again


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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 2-24-2019, 7:06 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the reply FOG. Are there any common reasons why the Petcock won’t shut in the off position? The bike only starts in the off position, not in the ON or RES positions. Could something be backwards in there? Everything in there seems pretty one-way.
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 2-24-2019, 7:08 PM Thread Starter
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Also I’m getting a new vac hose for the Petcock to the carb, maybe that will solve the problem. I noticed a small crack and I’m guessing if it’s not sealing completely the Petcock can’t create the appropriate vacuum.
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 2-24-2019, 7:26 PM
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it starts in the off position , because in any of the on positions fuel is flowing past your float valves, At least you petcock's off position works
You must do 2 repair jobs
#1 remove the petcock and fix it so it only flows when vacuum is applied to it

#2 pull your carbs and work on the float valve until the stop the flow of fuel at the proscribed level

No measuring the float height is not enough you must suspend the carb at the correct angle and apply a gravity fuel feed when the floats are at height the flow must stop

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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 2-24-2019, 8:53 PM
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additionally...inspect your engine oil for fuel invasion into crankcase

consider my services, PM or email [email protected] if so inclined

remember...Clean Carbs Matter

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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 2-25-2019, 12:40 PM
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Do as FOG says and you'll be on the right track to squaring up your carbs.

However, by your description, it may be hard to admit, but your carbs just aren't 100% clean yet. I'm also getting the feeling you're in a bit over your head.

First step, take a deep breath and relax, take a couple days off of working on the bike. Give yourself the chance to think of something other than a motorcycle giving you a headache for a bit, and do some research (which is you've started doing by posting up here) on some solutions.

Custom Carb Services (aka Ducatiman) knows his stuff. He can either rebuild your carbs or walk you step by step through the tried and true method of properly rebuilding and tuning these carbs. FOG also has extensive experience with carbs and I've been into the EX carbs numerous times as well, so we can all help set you right. This does mean you have to forget whatever it is you've done to the carbs up to this point as it definitely has not solved the problem.

As for your petcock, rebuild kit is great, though get yourself a factory OEM vacuum diaphragm. If you're using the one out of an aftermarket kit, throw it in the trash. Trust me, it will give your problems later. I've tried a variety of aftermarket vacuum diaphragms on these petcocks and they all fail on short notice. OEM is the only way to go.

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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 2-25-2019, 1:43 PM
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Bench-test your carbs for fuel integrity before installing them on the bike. This will save a lot of frustration in installing and removing carbs that still need work.

After a major cleaning/rebuild I will always set the carbs on a block of wood to keep them upright and then apply fuel form a remote source through the fuel line. You can test the vacuum operation of the fuel tap this way, as well as ensuring the float valves are not leaking.
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 2-26-2019, 5:46 PM
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You can also tap on the carbs and see if that frees the float to seat properly. This is really temporary, but will help verify the float valve as the problem. You might go ahead and get new float needles as well. Even a small amount of wear or brittleness can cause idle issues, no matter how clean the carbs are. They're cheap enough that a new set is a good investment. That little bit of rubber just won't seat correctly and you'll end up chasing your tail trying to make the bike run just right with those simple little parts fighting you the whole way.

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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 3-31-2019, 12:26 AM
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I cobbled together this jig which holds the carbs at the same degree of inclination as on the bike. Makes checking float levels, etc much easier. You can also invert the carbs while reassembling, which is handy. Mighta' cost a buck, total.

Sorry for the bad pics - bright sun was playing havoc with my cataracts and everything was blurry.
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