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GL1200 Won't Idle (Poor Idle)

9138 Views 22 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  ctrobins
I just rebuild my carbs (using the Randakk kit) Yay! Even though it looks like two octopuses were in a fight on it with all the vacuum tubes etc. I'm pretty sure all the tentacles ended up in the right places.

I just balanced the carbs also.

I adjusted the Idle mix screws at '3 turns out' from seated.

Here is my situation that I'm hoping to get some advice on:
I set the choke, and the bike starts right up.
BUT, it won't idle if I set the choke completely off. Even when the engine is warm.
so to avoid the engine dying at stops, I reach for the choke as I'm slowing down and open the choke just a little to keep it running.

Should I just adjust the choke to be a 'little open' all the time? Or is there some other thing I could do to fix?

- Craig
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If it idles half decent without the choke at least you can make some shorter local a tank or two of fuel through it...get an idea what other things it will inevitably need. Age related things that don't happen to newer 'rides' tend to show up on bikes that are nearly 30 years old.
Thanks for your input guys!

The bike does seem to idle OK now, and I feel pretty comfortable going on some shorter rides (where I can call my wife or kids to pick me up in an emergency :)

I did open up the tank and got a good look inside. I think I found the lost city of Atlantis in there! The fuel itself looks clear enough, but, there is a bit of flakes and crud down inside and rust on much of the inner surface. I think I'm going to have a project to remove and derust / clean the tank.

I suspect that any 'chunks' that may break loose and make their way into the fuel line will be caught in the new fuel filter, but I'd feel a lot better if I knew the entire fuel system was clean.. and free of whatever petroleum based life-forms are in there!

Just to wrap this thread up...

I discovered that the fuel tank had a lot of rust crumbs in it. To fix this, I cleaned the fuel tank... I did not want to go through the process of removing the tank, so I cleaned it while still mounted. The final result is that the bike idles and runs VERY smoothly now, and seems to have a lot more power and excellent throttle response.

Here's how I cleaned the tank.
1) Remove the fuel send unit. Closed the petcock and removed the fuel line
2) siphon the old fuel and discard (it was old and full of rust gravel)
3) Sprayed a bunch of carb cleaner into the filler tube and the open fuel send area.
4) using a stiff (and skinny) toilet brush I scrubbed the insides of the tank as best as I could reach.
5) poured a little fresh gas in (to rinse)
6) Siphoned that out, trying to suck up as much debris as possible.
7) poured in 2 gallons of Evaporust. (waited overnight)
(I was hoping this would dissolve the rust crumbs... but it didn't. But, I did to a pretty good job of derusting the parts of the tank the liquid touched. I made sure to siphon a little of the Evaporust into the petcock valve to try to clear the tube out a little also
8) Siphoned out the Evaporust (using a tube about 1/2 inch diameter.)
(I discovered, using a larger diameter tube is good for sucking out the crumbs)
9) Poured about 2-3 gallons of water into the tank, scrubbed, siphoned..and siphoned some water through the petcock. REPEAT a few times. After about 4 cycles of this there were very few crumbs left... but, still not 'like new' inside
10) I used a small sponge on the end of a stick to try to blot dry and pick-up any finer debris still in the tank.
11) I let the tank air dry for a while. It was still a little damp inside when I decided to pour in a little Sea Foam and 1 gallon of gas to get the bike started.
It started right up and was running great!

I went on a short ride just to make sure the carbs had all new fuel in them.. then got to the gas station to fill up the tank with brand new gas!

I appreciate all the tips and advice folks provided and I hope this info is helpful for others... even if it's an example of 'How NOT to clean a gas tank'.

And that concludes my little adventure... for now!
- Craig
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