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

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

#16

Post by RUBONE » Tue May 27, 2014 4:06 pm

Dave,
As you are hearing over and over, if it is tuned correctly, it will start and usually quite easily. As pointed out,intake leaks, valve adjustment, timing, etc, must all be right on. However, another important aspect is the starting technique. How do you approach it? Describe your technique and maybe something will come to light. Replacing parts is not the correct approach, plenty of bikes out there that are littered with aftermarket stuff and don't start either. And always for the same reasons.

Many years ago (1983) I sold a '52 Panhead I had to a guy in Texas. I thought I would never see it again, but in about '91 my wife and I were driving through west Texas and saw a little bike shop in a small town. We stopped to check it out and when I walked in here was the '52 looking exactly as I sold it. I asked about it and they said the guy I sold it to lost it in a bankruptcy and they bought it at auction. But they couldn't sell it or ride it because it didn't start. I remarked that I had built it and it was always an easy starter and ran great. I asked if the battery was hot and there was fuel in it. Yest to both so I asked if I could start it. The guy said "knock yourself out, but it won't start". So I did my normal routine of prime kicks and then switch on and boom, it was running and idling. His eyes were as big as saucers as he did not believe it. So I gave him a lesson in starting a cold Panhead and wished him well on the way out. Hopefully the next owner understood the routine...

My old '52
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Re: Carb/throttle conversion for '49 Pan? Tired of hard star

#17

Post by socalrider » Tue May 27, 2014 4:30 pm

See below
Arnulfo
Last edited by socalrider on Tue May 27, 2014 4:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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

#18

Post by socalrider » Tue May 27, 2014 4:30 pm

I agree with the comment on cottons floats. THEY ARE THE BEST! Prior to putting one in my 65 flh, I always had carb problems, poor idling, hard starting, engine crapping out at a stop light.i have always kept my bike all stock,auto advance circuit breaker, cam, compression , hydraulic lifters and carb.At the time , I had a brass float in my linkert.That was the cause of my problem. I was not a member of this forum at the time and figured I had to live with all those annoyances if I wanted to ride a pan. All the local harley " gurus" told me that. So for close to 25 yrs I did live with it. The electric start made it bearable cause she always fired right back up. As soon as I put the float on it was like reaching motorcycle nirvana :D ! ALL the problems were gone. My pan is now a one kicker hot, and after a couple of prime kicks, one with choke, ignition off, she starts right up on first kick ignition on. I highly recommend them. But as previous posts have mentioned , all other possible problems need to be eliminated.He also is one helluva linkert carb rebuilder.
Suerte,
Arnulfo

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

#19

Post by Brit45 » Tue May 27, 2014 5:27 pm

Re 58flh... That panhead was nothing special in the engine stakes, and once it DID start it ran fine. But, no-one could ever start the f*cking thing in any sensible number of kicks. I've been around old bikes for forty-odd years and every once in a while, you get a complete dud and never work out why, it just happens. I've had two other pans that were fine; three or four Shovelheads and several 45s, and I've never had any serious problems once you get tbe drill right - and that can vary from bike to bike.

My personal view is that it's a v-twin thing, to do with the cylinder geometry. Parallel twins start easily because you get two power strokes on the same kick. Same for flat-twins - I had a BMW as a winter bike for years and years, and you could just tread on the pedal and it would light up, or touch the button, no problem. Singles can be a bit vicious but again, if the drill is right you don't really have any problems

But v-twins, you pretty much HAVE to start them on the #2 cylinder, then it's a lot of rotation to the next power stroke. Those little things slightly out of whack on any bike add up, and once in a while you get one where the power stroke just doesn't quite cut it.

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#20

Post by Cotten » Tue May 27, 2014 6:01 pm

Good grief, 45Brit!

If it was an inherent "geometry" problem, none of them would be easy to start.

If you cannot fix it, find someone who can!

....Cotten

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

#21

Post by 1951 adam » Tue May 27, 2014 6:42 pm

Sorry, but that whole geometry shit is funny as hell! They ain't that complicated. Air fuel compression spark.
I've never been beaten by a machine. If it doesn't work I make it work.
Adam

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

#22

Post by Huck » Tue May 27, 2014 7:12 pm

It happens sometimes. We were at Denton. A buddy & I entered our pans in the judged show for the hell of it. Two of the judges approached & commented they could be influence, both grinning widely. So my buddy won a plaque for “Most Cobbled Pan”. I was rather offended as mine is much more cobbled than his. Anyway upon tying his new award to the machine, it absolutely refused to start. After a beer break I did witness some sweet talk and tank rubbing, she then lit.

Pretty basic stuff. The air fuel ratio has to be correct. The plug has to fire at the correct time.
The battery, coil<<check primary & secondary, wires all<<got a rub somewhere?, circuit breaker<< shaft tight? Switch<<clean?, plug wires, plugs. Any monkey can set the timing but everything else has to be checked also.
How does the manifold fit the heads? The carb?<< can of worms but should at least start easy less kicking yourself into a frenzy.
Anybody with a good running Pan knows it like the back of their hand, maybe you don’t know yours yet.<<DIG IN. You go over it tooth & nail you’ll end up with a good running machine.
2bits 8)
PS: switch off,choke, kick it three times then pull the plugs and have a looksee.

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

#23

Post by panhead » Tue May 27, 2014 8:24 pm

Here is the leak test article: viewtopic.php?f=103&t=9405

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

#24

Post by Panhead Ed » Sun Jun 01, 2014 1:05 pm

As many have said allready VACUME leak classic ! I NEVER MET A PANHEAD I DIDNT LIKE OR COULDNT START . I hate it when assholes blame the bike for shit the owner or tuner should be keeping up with .
Nothing wrong with 6v systems , same as 12v just half the volts no rocket science here.Hell we used to show off starting them by HAND ! Its all about the technique .
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Re: Carb/throttle conversion for '49 Pan? Tired of hard star

#25

Post by Cotten » Sun Jun 01, 2014 8:58 pm

Panhead Ed!

I used to take Goodyear "double-whites" like your tires and spin them up against a beltsander until they were 1" 'whites'.

It was a '65 thing....

Sorry for the hijack, Folks....

....Cotten

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