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help: engine gurus and all other misfits

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:applause::applause::applause::applause::applause::applause::applause::applause::applause::applause::applause::applause: this is a problem that began about 2 1/2 weeks ago (thread: "a bit of a head scratcher"). I was test riding my bike after having installed a quiet core (03 S with full exhaust, hotcams in and ex, 3x3, dj kit, mcct, 20000km, stock compression, mikuni carb, all safety switches removed (when new) fan removed, thermostat removed (dust seal from front wheelbearing used as spacer to allow use of stock gasket/o-ring). It began missing and stumbling badly. Over a period of about 10 mins it got progressively worse and then, all of a sudden, stopped hard. After a few minutes it started up again but made a lot of noise (had made noise in last few seconds before dying) so I shut it off. I Thought it was the primary nut or the cam chain had broken a link and was about to fail totally. It sounded and felt like a combination of timing and breakage. In retrospect, the bike had missed a few times, gently and hardly enough to be sure it wasnt my imagination, a few times on the previous ride or 2.

Cam chain was good, pnut tight, cams in time, valves in spec... lot of metal in oil but fine powdery stuff-more than normal but not alarming in itself.

Installed new cam chain as it was due anyway, checked valves.

Eddie said it sounded like source coil-good call but....

Stator was fried (and source coil too) by there being a washer/shim floating around in the mag cover. Held by the magnet, it was hitting the poles of the stator-there is the source of the metal in oil. Replaced with moose stator (good fit, cheap, plug'n'play, 6days from tt store order to my door in canada :thumbsup: )

No dice.

Bike fired right up and immediately died. hard. The engine is stopping as though some giant was grabbing the end of the crank. Even from high idle on choke (3000+rpm) to 0rpm in a fraction of a second. Even when revving it wioth throttle to 6000rpm blasts it will die in mid stroke. Much faster stop than if the key was turned off-I'm thinking dark thoughts here:bearings, rod,...

When I restart, it turns very hard as though the battery is dead-new battery 1 month ago, holding its charge well.

Thought to check carb:had just installed a new airfilter a ride (250km) before and maybe it was causing plugged air jets making it become very rich shortly after starting and maybe that was causing it to stop-not likely but...

Removed carb today and fully disassembled it. All ok though a lot of airliflter oil in airbox and a slight trace of it in bell-mouth of carb. Cleaned and set everything to baseline (Eddie's specs), even checked power jet and its ass'y-(pretty cool unit, I wonder if there is power to release in there), all air circuits, all fuel circuits, choke ass'y, set float height (was 10mm, set to 13mm exactly), checked float needle seat, filter-all good, made sure needle ass'y was correct, blew wd-40 through all passages, swabbed all orifices with q-tip-like new

battery was low (12.2V bike off). Hooked to truck (engine off, battery @13.4V) no difference. Bike starts, runs 5-30 sec, dies as though it has seized, starts right back up but turns over hard, runs 5-30 sec, dies hard again... Checked voltage at battery when running just above idle (had to move fast!) 13.7V@ about 2000rpm (bike only, disconnected from truck)

Tested all yellow wires from stator:no continuity to ground so ok. Dont know how to check other parts, but by the noises and the way it is dying, I dont think it is electrical unless it is cdi. have retraced all steps so far since last time it ran well: removed exhaust core, replaced ex cam with stocker, returned jetting to base, checked and applied dielectric grease to all electrical connection on the entire bike except main ground cable behind front sprocket (checked and it was clean, tight and hard to get at and full continuity), removed, cleaned and reinstalled ignition coil (power wire was routed tightly over the head of a bolt and was being pressed against it by a hose or cable-almost worn through-rerouted it)

Will wrangle a spare cdi from a friend to test with-I hope.

in the mean-time: any ideas? :ride:

no matter how far fetched I would like to hear them. I have checked a lot of the basics so far

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You mentioned a washer/shim floating around under the stator cover? ...did you identify where this washer came from? ...Is there a bolt still in there some where? ...are all starter clutch bolts in place?

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will pull the stator out again and see. Everything looked good and clean on install. The washer didnt leave the surface of the magnet while it was in there so no damage from impact between the stator and cover. The install went well, new unit looks good, wiring a bit tight where the clamps/brakets hold it out of the way of the rotor. The starter clutch only turns one way as it should and it spins smoothly but with a very slight drag (enough to prevent it from spinning freely more than a fraction of a revolution when spun by hand). Is that the way it should be? That big stack of gears that mesh with the starter motor:is there anything special about them? They seem fine but I have never seen anything like them. Noise seems to be coming from cam chain side low but when I installed the new one I cleaned and inspected everything in there:clutch, all gear teeth, counterbalancer timing and teeth, clutch action and basket condition. Not sure about oil pump but water pump turned nicely.

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You mentioned a washer/shim floating around under the stator cover? ...did you identify where this washer came from? ...Is there a bolt still in there some where? ...are all starter clutch bolts in place?

shim came from starter idler gear outer end-fell off the gear as I was installing the cover. No bolt. Didnt count or check starter clutch bolts but nothing looked out of place and I inspected the cover carefully for "normalcy"-things that are wrong usually jump out at you, things that are as you expect them are not noticed.

good suggestion though, keep em comin'

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The engine stops due to friction so you need to find the source.

Idea no 1. Remove the starter reduction gear from inside the alternator case. Reassemble and bump start. If it keeps running, it is the starter roller clutch behind the flywheel.

Idea no 2. The transmission has a siezed bearing. (it is constant mesh so all 5 gears are meshed but free spin on the shaft in neutral and all but 1 free spin in any gear) Put the bike in gear. Hold the clutch disengaged, start the motor and see if it keeps running.

Idea no 3. Rod bearing.

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today will remove alternator cover and see what I can do about inspecting the starter clutch better. I believe Eddie is right-he has an uncanny ability to diagnose this stuff-dont really know what I'm looking for in terms of malfunction-wobble, notchiness, scraping sounds, lightning flashes(-just kidding). I dont have a rotor puller and wont be able to get my hands on one until next week (tues earliest). While in there I will remove the reduction/idler gear and see what happens. I have put bike in gear and rolled it through a few revs in 1-4th and seems to engage and disengage cleanly. Have also shifted through a few and wiggled the sprocket by hand to see if there is any unusual resistance and seems ok. When engine stopped on trail was in 4th or 5th at 40-50mph. I pulled in clutch and coasted to a stop, clicking down through the gears as my speed decreased as I always do (so that if I need power I'll be in the right gear and only have to dump the clutch) and it shifted cleanly.

am worried it's #3-conrod bottom bearing as that is where the sound is coming from. Any way to check it without removing crank ass'y (just for diagnosis purposes in the back yard)?

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Any way to check it without removing crank ass'y (just for diagnosis purposes in the back yard)?

Sorry to hear of all your problems Rob.

Just as a check, you can remove the cylinder-head and barrel/piston, and that will let you examine the rod bearing, well enough to either rule it out, or confirm it is loose or tight.

Neil.

:thumbsup::ride::applause:

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2 pm here, bright sunny day, wish I was riding instead of wrenching.

Have removed both side covers of engine, pulled all oil drains and hosed inside down with wd40 as much as possible with the idea of performing a poor-man's flush-not satisfied with the performance so far, am going to go get some more-or something like it. Bike has run less than 1 minute since oil (5w-30) was put in. This is the third oil change in the past 2.5 minutes of running time- How's that for exceeding the manual! Oil on alternator side looked like metalic paint. Fragments are ferrous (stick to magnet). lots of them stuck to rotor/flywheel when I disassembled. Some of them are .5mm diam, most smaller.

Here's what I've found: all bolts in place, all washers/shims in place,

-starter clutch: was sort of free but a bit notchy, like a bad bearing. Cleaned behind it and turned it many revs (starter clutch only, by hand) while spraying with wd40, hose bent to reach behind rotor, and, second, behind clutch itself. Became more free. Will now turn about 30* past input of spin by hand. Also, now moves in and out (parallel to crank) about 1/4". Is that normal? Still seems to turn freely in or out, ie: doesnt seem to be rubbing against anything.

-crank shaft: bearings feel good. No end play, no lateral play, not too tight, not too loose.

-conrod: placing engine at different points of cycle and using compression and freeroll as one side of force equation, hands as other side, was able to get a pretty good feel for how things are working. Seems ok; again, not too tight, not too loose.

-transmission: worked through all gears, rotated clutch by hand (plates out). Easily shifted, easily able to move rear wheel with hand torque on clutch basket. Everything as it should be.

Oil pump: flushed with wd40-ok

water pump:good

Oil passages: crank:good, Pump:good, Cam chain region:good, transmission:good, drain from head alt side:good-flushed them all thoroughly

Flush-Hosed in a bunch of wd40 by holes in crankcases and rocked bike back and forth to slosh it around, then dumped it out the alternator side, refilled and dumped it out clutch side. Then sprayed up into inside (accurately aimed shots, guided by flashlight), onto piston skirts, crank, transmission shafts, gears, forks, crank bearings (from opposite sides), balancer...and let it run out drain plug and, with bike leaned over 45*, out crankcase holes, in torrents.

Questions:

#1: will a lot of ferrous and magnetically charged particles in the oil cause the ignition to fire at odd times, like water vapour does to points ignition systems?

#2: should the starter clutch slide in and out?

#3: anything else I can check while engine is openned up?

#4 What other components could have been damaged by a fried stator?-and can i check them?

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#2: should the starter clutch slide in and out?

Yes, just a little, but not 1/4 of an inch.

Have you checked all the components against the fiche, or manual to make sure it is all there, and in the right place ??

Neil.

:thumbsup::ride::applause:

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Yes, just a little, but not 1/4 of an inch.

Have you checked all the components against the fiche, or manual to make sure it is all there, and in the right place ??

Neil.

:thumbsup::ride::applause:

that part of the engine has never been apart so it should be as it has been for 20000kms

thanks for the moral support and ideas. If the starter clutch is moving that far, what could be causing it? It engages and disengages smoothly in both full-out and full-in positions.

Dont have manual or fiche and dealers are closed here for weekend (and are 1hr away from me)

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update: been working on bike all day, now 8pm. Stopped for the day.

I have reassembled everything. tried bump starting it with E start gears out. No start. Gave up.

Came in and checked out ron ayers fiche (what a great resource!!!- thanks Neil C.) Reinstalled the gears-had had a couple of shims mixed up. Had placed a thin and a thick on each set of gears (idler and limiter/drive). Fired right up, ran beautifully.

5 seconds later it died again just as it has been doing-checked vaccuum line, tried again and turned over really hard-just as it has been doing.

Dont know if the starter clutch is faulty as I havent had it running without it. Will try again tomorrow or monday-If I keep on I might have a tantrum and break something.

Nearest suzi dealer is 1hr away. Do any honda, harley, yamaha or other pullers take off the flywheel?

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#1: will a lot of ferrous and magnetically charged particles in the oil cause the ignition to fire at odd times, ---- Never thought about it but I would say yes if it changes the air gap between the flywheel and the pick up coil.

#2: should the starter clutch slide in and out?----Yes, quite a bit. Less then 1/4" but it might look like it.

#3: anything else I can check while engine is openned up?----If you can spin the crank in both directions by hand and it feels smooth, then probably not rod or main bearings.

#4 What other components could have been damaged by a fried stator? and can I check them?-----Possibly any solid state electronics if the alternator sent out voltage spikes

I think you need to get a good look at the starter clutch. If you want to go to the bother, run it with the starter reduction gears out. Or just remove the flywheel and inspect the clutch. It is a sprag or roller clutch. If the metal particles bind the rollers (or sprags) it will hang up instead of disengage as the engine attemps to over-run it.

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Puller- No. Only the DRZ400 puller will work.

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thanks Noble.

Pretty sure rod is good now (80% sure), not at all sure about electrics.

clutch rolls well in reverse but maybe not well enough. It will come off on tuesday.

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If your remove the starter clutch ,does the starter turn over? and you can turn over the motor by hand?.. And it's only when you install the starter clutch that it will not turn over? If all yes... Make sure all of the washers and shims are present in the starter clutch and idler gear.If you forget one, you will bind the starter clutch in the case when you tighten down the cover screws. It's silly,simple,and can happen easy.. And it does in fact lock up the starter system and appear to be a locked motor, until you realize what is going on. :thumbsup::ride:

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If your remove the starter clutch ,does the starter turn over? and you can turn over the motor by hand?.. And it's only when you install the starter clutch that it will not turn over? If all yes... Make sure all of the washers and shims are present in the starter clutch and idler gear.If you forget one, you will bind the starter clutch in the case when you tighten down the cover screws. It's silly,simple,and can happen easy.. And it does in fact lock up the starter system and appear to be a locked motor, until you realize what is going on. :ride::applause:

yes, starter turns.

yes, engine turns.

no, starter turns well when properly assembled until after it has died, then it turns hard (by starter) but turns.

engine is not seized. starts then dies. turns easily but correctly by hand.

:thumbsup:

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update today: removed starter clutch:ok

removed head and jug: conrod nearly seized. When I turned it by hand before it felt fine. Turned it several (20-30)revs to pump oil through during flush and while trying to check to see if it in fact was good. Guess you really have to disassemble to know for sure for something like that:used to sleds where, if you grab the end of the crank and can't move it, you're good to ride until it blows hard parts out the sides.

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