98 WR 400,Kick starter problems.

I purchased a Pro Circuit T-4 exhaust, Used and it came with a couple of end caps. So I bolted it on and started the bike to give it a listen, warmed it up, shut it down to change the cap to compare. Upon restarting, it kicked back when I was near the bottom of the kick. The lever stayed down, so I pulled it back up. It seemed a bit stiff, but as not to be a quitter (even with a sore foot), I kicked it again and it started. There was a heavy grinding, so I shut it down right away and walked out of the garage.

After Christmas at my house, it got the best of me so I went out and tore it down.

I found that the finger on the ratchet wheel had broken the stop plate, and then slid down between the case and the guide shearing off the top bolt.

The bolt was easily removed, and I ordered the stop plate, guide plate,lock plate for the bolts and 2 new bolts, and all the gaskets and o-rings to do the job for around $30. Not to bad, but the finger also banged up the case down to just past the top bolt hole. I figured I'd get the parts and lay them in there to see how much repair th case is going to need. I'm thinking if this was a professional repair it would get a case, but money is tight.

I'm wondering if this has happened to anyone? How was it fixed? and How did the repair work?

I'm thinking if the area behind the stop plate is minimal, JB weld might do it, but if it's huge, I may need to tear the whole thing down and have it welded, or take a bit more of material out and make a spacer.

Any input would be cool.


Yeah it happened to my buddy with a 03 WR450 that had the famous woodruf key failure and dealt with it by removing his e-start idler gear. Thus he had to kick it to start. He is a big guy and kicks the bike with a lot of power and had the same failure! He was not as smart as you and kept riding it in the WudsI event in Arkansas. He ended up cracking the cases and seizing the oil pump becuase the cheap little stop tang broke off and jammed between the oil pump gear and the case! Not much clearance. He had the same grinding noise you mentioned. Anyway he got rid of that bike and got a new 2005 WR450 and loves the Magic Button! :applause:

What actually causes the engine to kick back? It seems to do it more often after it has sat without being ridden for a while. Is it the way I'm starting it? or is it a mechanical problem? This is my first thumper, and the KX 250 never kick back like this.

Don't apply throttle when trying to start... (if you are) that will cause it kick back.

Or the carb could be rich on the low end...

A properly tuned carb will feed the cylinder on start up with out giving it any throttle.

Choke it when it's cold and don't when it's hot...

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