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Starting Help Plzzz

Ok hello y'all, I just bought my first bike three days ago. I met the guy and drove it home about 40 miles and parked it till I got it tagged well today I went to ride it and I can not get it to idle. At first it would idle for like 20 seconds then die with the choke wide open, it will not start if it's not. I was told be the previous owner to keep the battery on a float charger which I did just after it dies that 1st time it's like the battery gets weaker each time I continue to hit the start button till finally nothing happens. It's a 87 1400. I can charge the battery and the process will repeat. I live in Virginia it's like 70 degrees outside and in the way home it ran strong no issues. Thanks guys and help would be great.




Easy thing first. Get a load test on the battery. Any good bike shop or battery dealer should be able to do it. When it does start and you give it some throttle does it keep running?

No any bit of throttle kills the bike

It's entirely possible to have two coincidental problems. I refer to this as motorcycle frustration syndrome The idle problem is usually clogged jets or a air leak. If this occurs when your have a electrical issue you can be chasing your tail with no results. First, get the battery tested. If that doesn't fix the charging issue, you will need to check the regulator/rectifier and alternator outputs. Check your spark plugs to see if your running rich or lean. The carb issue can sometimes be cleared by running Seafoam or a equivalent thru the carbs. Let us know what the battery test and plug reading shows.

So ok I had my battery checked at two different auto parts stores both said it was good even under load it was good. I will be checking my spark plugs tonight as I just ordered two new NKG plugs. I will say every time I walk by the bike even kinda a ay from it I can smell raw gas idk if that means anything or if that's normal due to the age.

If your smelling raw gas then somethng is wrong. Do a close visual inspection for leaks. It may also be a stuck float.
Read thru this.
Do you have a shop manual?

Ok so it will start now just will not idle. It will for like 30 secs but I have to have the choke all the way on and caint touch it. And any bit of throttle kills it

I would say you have either dirty carbs as in clogged jets and or passages or a carb air leak. The pilot jet is the usual suspect. You're going to need this.
Some people have managed to disconnect the fuel line, drain the float bowls into a container to measure how much gas is in the float bowls, fill the bowls with seafoam with a small funnel into the fuel line. Start the the bike and run for a couple of seconds and refill the bowls. Let it sit over night and repeat. Reconnect every thing and run the bike on a heavy dose of seafoamed gas, just enough for a buzz around the block. It will smoke. If it worked you can fill it with gas and smile. If not, the carbs will need to come off and get a complete going through.

Ok so I replaced with new spark plugs. Gapped correctly. Check the plug wires. Check the battery. Full charge terminals clean. Power to and from start and relays good. Full of gas in the tank. Now I just noticed it started for like 20 seconds one time but the rear cylinder got warm but not the front. It was cold. Any ideas now?

Check to see if you're getting spark at the front cylinder. Pull the front plug wire, insert a known good spark plug. Hold the metal part pf the plug against the cylinder with insulated pliars and crank the bike. Should produce a fat blue spark.
If weak or no spark, you will need to test the coil. You'll need a multimeter. See Chapter 6, page 6 for how to test it.

Ok finally got it going. I replaced my fuel lines with new longer hoses. The old hoses were starting to dry rot and crack. I replaced them and cleaned all the electronics. And she fired right up. Anyways thanks to everyone's help I really do appreciate it. Awsome site.

Fantastic! Now go over everything else. Replace your brake fluid. Check the age of your tires. Better to spend some more time and effort now than have bad things happen. Give everything a good going over.
Fill out your profile and post on the new members page. Lot's of good people here.

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