Carb/throttle conversion for '49 Pan? Tired of hard starting

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Dave D
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Carb/throttle conversion for '49 Pan? Tired of hard starting

#1

Post by Dave D »

I've rebuilt the stock Linkert on my '49 Panhead, and it still retains original internal push throttle, distributor, ignition retard in left grip, etc. I've really fought to keep this baby stock (hey - people used to ride these across country back in the day!) but I'm not having any fun with it. Too hard to start most of the time, doesn't want to idle down low, and with its hand shift and foot clutch, you want a cooperative engine, not an unpredictable beast. I'm ready to consider a conversion to whatever the general consensus says is the best setup for a (relatively) easy starting, good idling, well-carbureted machine, alone with any necessary ignition mods. It's still 6 volt so changing to 12v means a new generator, battery, bulbs, etc too of course....And a new carb means a new throttle assembly which probably means new bars, which then will no longer have the ignition retard. It's a slippery slope! Let's hear the voice of experience here—I want to put some miles on the bike this summer! ~ Dave



Scrap
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Re: Carb/throttle conversion for '49 Pan? Tired of hard star

#2

Post by Scrap »

Dave,
You are going to hear this from lots of folks. I don't know why your bike is not starting easily, but it's not the fact that it's a 6 volt system.

1951 adam
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Re: Carb/throttle conversion for '49 Pan? Tired of hard star

#3

Post by 1951 adam »

Scrap wrote:Dave,
You are going to hear this from lots of folks. I don't know why your bike is not starting easily, but it's not the fact that it's a 6 volt system.
I'll start scrap... Dave There's no reason in the world that bike properly tuned should not fire cold after 2 prime kicks. Sounds like you have a lot of issues that need addressing , but 6volt is not one of them. Adjust your throttle plate and cable, check for bind , and lube according . Set ignition timing, valve lash. How's the compression ? Battery condition ? Intake leaks will not let the bike idle down .... A well maintained 6 volt system works as well or better then a 12, it's a Low output system , and unless your running A LOT of accessories all you need, please address everything else first
Adam

Dave D
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Re: Carb/throttle conversion for '49 Pan? Tired of hard star

#4

Post by Dave D »

I only mentioned 6 volt because if someone of going to recommend a 12v Mallory dual-point or other modern unit, everything 6v will have to be changed over. I'd rather keep as much stock and original as possible. Top end is just rebuilt, excellent compression. Should be no leaks at manifold after rebuild. Starts easier cold than hot....

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Re: Carb/throttle conversion for '49 Pan? Tired of hard star

#5

Post by Bigincher »

I'm sure you're going to hear that the notorious vacuum leak is the root of all evil, and every troublesome motorcycle suffers from it. So you might as well do yourself a favor and get that one taken care of and off the list, then we can talk about everything else.
As for the 6-volt system, yeah they work fine, but the battery has to be fully charged, and not limping along on it's 8th or 9th season trying to stretch it one more. (And I'm sure we'll also hear from the armchair scientist that 7 or 8 years is just fine......)

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Re: Carb/throttle conversion for '49 Pan? Tired of hard star

#6

Post by john HD »

I got 8 years out of a battery then i dropped it and broke it.

Big is correct, nothing wrong with a 6 v system, it just needs to work as designed.

john

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Re: Carb/throttle conversion for '49 Pan? Tired of hard star

#7

Post by Cotten »

Dave!

If you have your original manifold (of even if you do not!) you must eliminate the possibility of the evil manifold leak.

Only bubbles can tell the truth: http://virtualindian.org/11leaktest.html

Original silver-soldered manifolds were not only quite malleable, particularly upon the flange,
49mani2.jpg
but the staking dimples within occasionally leak by themselves.

These issues are easily repaired, but the bubble-testing is critical..

....Cotten
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Re: Carb/throttle conversion for '49 Pan? Tired of hard star

#8

Post by JR JOHNSON »

won a lot of kick start contest with my pan,with a linkert,did change to a bendix in the 90's do to float probs,brass floats are junk,cottens are the best.look in the knowledge bass,lots of info,bendex carb to me is the best way to go........JR.......also 6 volt,3 brush,extra one in saddle bags ,but changed to 12 volt late 90's,hard to find bulbs,ect. on-the road.......JR

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Re: Carb/throttle conversion for '49 Pan? Tired of hard star

#9

Post by 1951 adam »

Bigincher wrote:I'm sure you're going to hear that the notorious vacuum leak is the root of all evil, and every troublesome motorcycle suffers from it. So you might as well do yourself a favor and get that one taken care of and off the list, then we can talk about everything else.
As for the 6-volt system, yeah they work fine, but the battery has to be fully charged, and not limping along on it's 8th or 9th season trying to stretch it one more. (And I'm sure we'll also hear from the armchair scientist that 7 or 8 years is just fine......)
Yep, it all comes down to good cells, good specific gravity. These battery's must be checked at least every 2 weeks, if the cells are down, pull it and 2amp charge. On a 3 brush it's critical , but with any battery it's just good maintenance.
These bikes love maintenance . And it will love you for it
Adam

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Re: Carb/throttle conversion for '49 Pan? Tired of hard star

#10

Post by Mr.Big »

Ditto on the leak test. It all starts there. Also, are you running a repop ignition coil? I recently had starting issues with mine and another coil seemed to fix it. Still a repop but until a good OEM shows up it's the only game in town.

Also, I dumped the wet cell battery and run the repro box that Geoff Erdos makes with the EaglePicher SLA battery. No leaking, no water, no muss, no fuss and holds a charge much longer. In fact, I never need to put a trickle charger on it and it can sit for a month and still show 6.5 volts.....

Dave D
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Re: Carb/throttle conversion for '49 Pan? Tired of hard star

#11

Post by Dave D »

Cotton - I clicked on that leak test link but it didn't work for me. Is it still a valid link?
Thanks!
- Dave

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Re: Carb/throttle conversion for '49 Pan? Tired of hard star

#12

Post by awander »

Ya' know, I may just be lucky, but I have not really done much maintenance on my '52-and it always starts first kick (after a couple of prime kicks with ignition off).

Every couple of years I think about maybe checking the points, or the timing, or the plugs, but it runs so well I never bother. I don't think I have changed any parts in at least 5 or 6 years.

(now I know I have jinxed myself)

Brit45
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Re: Carb/throttle conversion for '49 Pan? Tired of hard star

#13

Post by Brit45 »

Some panheads just won't go. I had one that defied the best efforts of people who knew about them for years. In the end I gave up; it's a show bike in Sweden now.

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Re: Carb/throttle conversion for '49 Pan? Tired of hard star

#14

Post by Cotten »

Dave D wrote:Cotton - I clicked on that leak test link but it didn't work for me. Is it still a valid link?
Thanks!
- Dave
Doh!

http://virtualindian.org/11techleaktest.html

Sorry.

.....Cotten

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Re: Carb/throttle conversion for '49 Pan? Tired of hard star

#15

Post by 58flh »

BRIT45------Said Some Panheads just wont go!--Inspite of people who knew what was up!.---I find that hard to swallow!,--IMO--If a motor is correctly timed & it getting gas & has compression.IT has to LITE-UP!/////NOW Ive seen guys build themselves right out of what would otherwise be a DAILY-RUNNER!.ALL them CAM THIS & TIME THAT,& all bolt-on performance pieces -WILL NOT BE a HAPPY MOTOR!.Most of the time I came across Cams not suited for street use,MANY INTAKE-LEAKS!-(that was probably the #1-Issue, next to Resister Spark-Plugs & wires!--Incorrect Timing & abnoxious COMP.-Ratios!).Once the Manifold-Leaks were taken care of Inspite of Hi-Comp. slugs---The bike did fire!----But now all the add-ons need to come-off & Realistic Carb. jetting & cam selection needed to be done!.----Respectfully---Richie

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