mt 500 starting

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karl
Posts: 1
Joined: Sat May 12, 2018 9:22 pm
Location: sussex

mt 500 starting

Post by karl » Sun May 13, 2018 6:39 am

have joined for help sorting my mates 500 poor starting. it has a mikuni carb I read they are a bit of a dog to start. i had running but getting to burst into life is knackering me. any help with carb settings have good spark good fuel cleaned tank, carb ect ect so any help would be good thanks
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Bonnielad
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Joined: Sun Jun 21, 2015 7:38 pm

Re: mt 500 starting

Post by Bonnielad » Sun May 13, 2018 7:42 am

Hi Karl, welcome aboard.
I believe that MT500 s have an ill deserved reputation for bad starting but I know just how you feel. My leg muscles were worn out when I first got my bike.
The thing is, it's 30-year old and it's highly likely to have suffered some serious abuse in its life. Once they're sorted they are very easy to start.
You're obviously knowledgeable and you've checked the obvious already but there are a few things that immediately come to mind:
1. How old is the fuel? If the bike has been stood a while the petrol can go stale and useless. Make sure it's fresh.
2. Make sure the battery is good and fully charged. This definitely helps with spark strength.
3. Compression may be well down which makes starting a bitch.
4. Timing belt may have slipped. It's an easy check just to make sure the marks are perfectly lined up.

Hope this helps. Once they are properly sorted not only do they start easily but they are great fun. If you spend a bit of time using the thread search button (top right) you will find quite a few threads on the same subject with loads of good knowledge and advice.
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1985 Armstrong MT500 'Scrambler'
1964 Triumph Tiger Cub TR20 Trials Works Replica
2016 Honda CB500X (soon to be 'Rally Raided')

Wirralman
Posts: 4710
Joined: Fri Jan 16, 2009 9:45 am
Location: Wirral, Merseyside

Re: mt 500 starting

Post by Wirralman » Sun May 13, 2018 8:13 am

Go to the Technical section of the forum
Under Carbs you will find many posts You will also find comment about an MT500e owner in Canada changing Mikuni jet size with good results

The Search facility on the forum is very good and it may give you some ideas
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sween
Posts: 54
Joined: Wed Feb 25, 2009 9:53 am

Re: mt 500 starting

Post by sween » Tue May 15, 2018 11:02 am

Sorry to say this on a forum but :-
From experience and from listening to other owners I don't think the MT 500's reputation for poor starting is ill deserved.
The battery is not connected to the strength of the spark.
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Bonnielad
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Re: mt 500 starting

Post by Bonnielad » Tue May 15, 2018 12:12 pm

I appreciate your comments Sween. I am only speaking from personal experience, and the comments of other members that no longer have starting problems once the bike has received the right TLC.
I also agree with your comment about battery condition not being related to spark strength, but it seems nobody told my bike. I found that kicking the bike over when the battery was fully charged made starting much easier.
Fortunately for me, such problems are well in the past. I had the engine 'Mintered' and an electric start conversion so (to my mind) I get the best of both worlds (500 engine/350 starting convenience). However my heart goes out to anyone with starting problems as, 5 years on, my leg has only just recovered.
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1985 Armstrong MT500 'Scrambler'
1964 Triumph Tiger Cub TR20 Trials Works Replica
2016 Honda CB500X (soon to be 'Rally Raided')

Wirralman
Posts: 4710
Joined: Fri Jan 16, 2009 9:45 am
Location: Wirral, Merseyside

Re: mt 500 starting

Post by Wirralman » Tue May 15, 2018 6:07 pm

sween wrote: ↑
Tue May 15, 2018 11:02 am
Sorry to say this on a forum but :-
From experience and from listening to other owners I don't think the MT 500's reputation for poor starting is ill deserved.
The battery is not connected to the strength of the spark.
In May 2009 Mr Kay (forum name now- Throb) started a thread on MT500 starting techniques There were several forum pages worth of responses as owners grappled with this, so many people have struggled with this over the years

In 2009? I Went on a forum trip to Normandy. One rider came and was concerned that he would hold the group up because he found it hard to start his 500 By the end of the trip after some coaching and practice he could start it with no difficulty Another, carried a spare plug and if his bike didnt start after 4 or 5 kicks, changed his now wet plug for a dry one Perhaps he then kicked at little harder but it worked for him

So for those with good technique AND carb properly set up starting just isn't an issue For those whose technique isn't the best or whose carb isn't clean and properly set up it can be problematic
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Minter
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Joined: Sun May 30, 2010 7:42 pm
Location: Faringdon, Oxfordshire

Re: mt 500 starting

Post by Minter » Sun May 20, 2018 12:48 pm

Hi Karl,

Welcome to the forum,

Shame you're not a bit nearer and able to pop in for a tutorial.. I've done this with a few customers now and set their bikes up for them...

Gary
Sportax Racing
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