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No Start - Next Logical Step? 26 Jan 2021 15:34 #842464

  • CMcAuliffe
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79 KZ650 B3 (Confirmed through Kawasaki!). New to me. hasn't started/run in who knows how long. I just want to get it running so I can give it an informed evaluation. I'll see where I want to go from there.

It cranks with the key and a new battery but does not fire. I checked for spark and there is none (on #3 & #4). Spark plugs have continuity & are properly insulated, as do/are my primary wires through the points to the condensers. My red/yellow primary wires to the engine stop switch are sketchy (missing insulation), but I haven't gone into the switch yet to check the continuity. I'm trying hard not to break things.

So, I check the coils. Both look like they have had cracks repaired with... something. There are other, larger cracks on the casing. Not long for this world in any case. On my 2&3 coil I get 4 Ohms on the primary and sometimes 23K Ohms on the secondary. Oftentimes, that secondary number is all over the place. If I stay very still, I can keep it at 23K. The Clymer says I should have 4 & 23K. So, okay, I guess. The 1&4 coil gives me 4.2 and sometimes 25K. Not, okay, I guess.

ALL my connections could use a cleaning (De-Oxit DN5 on order and a day of fun in the making. ... I found that post.), and there are connections within my wiring that indicate there has been some overheating. So, rewiring is definitely in my future.

So, what's the next logical step at this point? What would you do, those who have done it before?

Man up and get into that engine stop switch? Anyone done such a thing – or a way to test without taking it apart? The Start button works – that’s something, no?

Clean all connections before anything else? I lean against it because it cranks. If it didn't do anything at all I'd be into checking all connections.

Get a $40 pair of coils from EBay? The ones on there now don't inspire a ton of confidence, and I've certainly spent more money on worse things, but of the 6 I looked at (admittedly, a small sample out of the 207 that came up), the secondary resistance was listed at 14.5K ohms instead of 23K. Do I run the risk of doing more damage to an already sensitive system? Because of the difference, do I run the risk of not getting accurate feedback, keeping the real trouble hidden? Does anyone know of a cheapo set like this that meets the Clymer specs? I don’t want to get into the really good aftermarket stuff because I have a long way to go before I do anything beyond stock.

Your input is appreciated...

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No Start - Next Logical Step? 26 Jan 2021 15:52 #842466

  • ckahleer
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Try jumpering +12v directly to the coils. Check for spark at all plugs. This bypasses ignition and kill switchs and related wiring.

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No Start - Next Logical Step? 26 Jan 2021 16:02 #842469

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I would check compression first. Then check valve clearance. Then pull, dismantle and clean the carbs. Replace the coils, plug wires and plugs. Then try to start it.
I have a couple of Z1B's restored, an '80 KZ1000LTD restored, a 1981 KZ550 restored and a 2008 KLR 650 for off road fun. My wife has a 2019 Suzuki DR 650 for on and off road.

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No Start - Next Logical Step? 26 Jan 2021 16:03 #842470

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Check your point gap.
Verify points are closing fully and separating fully.

Make sure the cylinders that are firing now are the ones that are supposed to be firing now.
Meaning, the points are matched to the coils and to the plugs (spark timing)

Spray some starting fluid down the carb throats to see if bike will fire. Just don't keep spraying the starting fluid as it will wash oil off of the cylinder walls.
81-KZ440-D2.
Louis Dudzik's GM HEI ignition module since 2015--no issues
Motogadget m-unit blue.

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Last edit: by F64.

No Start - Next Logical Step? 27 Jan 2021 04:28 #842484

  • Polish
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Well... if you have spark on 1&2 but not on 3&4, not your coils. Unless I’m mistaking (that’s how it is on my 750), you have the left coil firing cylinder 2&3 and the right coil firing 1&4. I would look at plug wires, switch the plugs over and see if problem transfers over. Your carbs are probably all gummed up, will have to clean them,. But in the mean time, spray carb cleaner, break cleaner or starter fluid as a last resort through your crabs or put gas in the spark plug holes..

Good luck

JL
1979 Honda CB400T Cafe Racer (current ride)
1982 KZ750 LTD (current project)

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No Start - Next Logical Step? 27 Jan 2021 04:30 #842485

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I don’t know if the picture uploaded on my previous post.
1979 Honda CB400T Cafe Racer (current ride)
1982 KZ750 LTD (current project)
Attachments:

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No Start - Next Logical Step? 30 Jan 2021 06:53 #842680

  • CMcAuliffe
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I've been looking for info on how to jumping the +12v directly to the coils. Is there a way to do so without frying what is left of my wiring?

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Last edit: by CMcAuliffe. Reason: Specifying my question

No Start - Next Logical Step? 30 Jan 2021 10:17 #842689

  • F64
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Look at you plug wires for 3 and 4 for cracks. Those wires may be grounding out against something metal before it gets to the spark plug.
I'm thinking if both your coils are firing then the spark for 3 and 4 has to go somewhere.
Otherwise, you would have no spark at all.
Switch the spark plug wires for 1 and 4. Then switch the wires for 2 and 3.
Test again to see where you have spark.
81-KZ440-D2.
Louis Dudzik's GM HEI ignition module since 2015--no issues
Motogadget m-unit blue.

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No Start - Next Logical Step? 06 Apr 2021 16:18 #846289

  • CMcAuliffe
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Getting back on track...

I replaced the coils & caps. Plugs are the same.
On the bench, I've tested both coils and both coils fire both of their plugs. Nice size spark.
Hooked up to the bike, no spark. I have close to battery voltage coming into the positive primary with the key on. I have continuity to the negative primary from both point springs.
After testing the existing one with inconsistent results, I replaced the condenser. 
I now have spark on #2 & #3 (one coil), but not on #1 & #4 (the other).
I switched the condenser wires to the opposite points with the same result. I have 2 & 3, but no 1 & 4. So, I'm focusing my attention on my left side, or rear-facing point.
The point on that side opens & closes. I've hit both sides of the point with 600 grit paper and then electric contact cleaner. It makes good enough contact on closing that I have to open it to get the paper in. The actual points look as meaty as the ones on the opposite side that are firing 2 & 3. The point itself does not spark upon opening. 

I don't want to get into the habit of throwing money at parts without finding out what's wrong with the old one.

Ideas?
 

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No Start - Next Logical Step? 07 Apr 2021 05:45 #846316

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The motor doesn't have to be cranked by the starter to troubleshoot no-spark on a bike with points.

With the ignition sw ON and points closed for the problem circuit (1-4 in this case), test for 12V  at the 1-4 primary.  The hot primary should be disconnected from the other coil, in this case, disconnect 2/3.

Rotate the motor so the 1/4 points are closed.  Turn ignition sw to ON, but don't start the motor.  Test for battery voltage at 1-4 primary.  If YES, manually open the 1-4 point arm by moving it with a small screwdriver, taking care not to ground the screwdriver's tip.  Or use a strong plastic or wood tip.  There may be a spark when the contacts open.  The point (no pun intended) is to break primary circuit while hot by opening the point contact, which should produce a spark with the motor not running.  If there's a spark leak to ground somewhere, it should be relatively easy to hear.

Don't leave the ignition sw ON for longer than 20 ~ 30 seconds with the motor not running, as uninterrupted power can overheat a coil.

Good Ridin'
slmjim & Z1BEBE
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No Start - Next Logical Step? 07 Apr 2021 06:34 #846319

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Check your point gap.
Verify points are closing fully and separating fully.



Exactly.  If the points are bad, are not set correctly, or have other problems the bike won't start no matter what else you replace.  Do you have the correct Kawasaki Service Manual for the exact model bike yu own?  Ed



 

1977 KZ650-C1 Original Owner - Stock (with additional invisible FIAMM horn)

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No Start - Next Logical Step? 07 Apr 2021 15:48 #846352

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Thank you both. 
Voltage at primary to the coil. I couldn't hear anything wonky when I opened the point manually. I took out #4 and grounded it on the engine, then opened the gap manually. And low, there was spark. I cranked the engine over and there was none. I was just thinking my points were maladjusted when I read Ed's comment. 
I will readjust and try again! 
Thanks again for the advice. 
Chris

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