dead engine race starts....need help

I race hare scrambles and we have dead engine starts. About 30% of the time that the flag drops and I try to start my bike in gear it doesn't crank. Has anyone else experienced these problems. Between this problem and our local club complaining about the noise of our 4-strokes with aftermarket exhaust, I might have to go back to a 2-stroke. Help me please.

-Lee in Memphis-


2000 wr400, airbox cover removed, scotts steering dampner, powercore IV2sa, yz tank and seat, raptor clutch perch.....on and on...


I've been racing GNCC and hare scrambles for about three years, and with a large bore fourstroke it is hard to get enough "rpm" on the crank to start the bike in gear(on the first kick). I tried this for a while, but I had the same problem your having. What you should to try is starting the bike in neutral with hand on clutch, one hard kick, then drop to first and hang on!!! :) I've been starting this way for the last 13 races and the bike has only misfired once(dead last in the woods), all the other times I've hit the woods in 7th or better. One thing you need to rember is you will NOT be able to hear your motor when it fires because of the other bikes, you just have to "trust" your technique and "know" the bike is running after the first kick.

This is a good procedure but you need to practice to find the most consistant way to get the bike to fire on the first kick.

Hope this helps,(let me know how it's going)


start u're bike and warm it up in 2nd gear

then shut it off in gear holding the cluch in

set the decomp and wait. this always works for me.good luck. try it alot first

I race D-37 Desert out here, Euro-scrambles, hare scrambles, GP's. All dead engine starts. I missed once in five starts last year on the YZ400. I started in first, but starting in neutral is not a bad idea. You'll lose way more time kicking a second time than shifting. I think I got away with it because I kept clutch adjusted to the tight side so I'd get as little drag as possable. Also at 6'4" 230 I can really kick it hard, as evidenced by the kickstarter I broke last year;-)


Chris in the Mojave

'98 YZ400F

We have to ride a parade lap on one of my Hare Scrambles. Even though I don't drop the bike I worry about not using the hot start button.

Are your races front fender starts or sitting on the bike?

[This message has been edited by Tree Crippler (edited 08-25-2000).]

Run the bike with it in whatever gear you're going to leave on, either first or second. Pull in the clutch and hit the kill button, DO NOT RELEASE THE CLUTCH LEVER. Find the hard spot and go past it with the release and then bring the kickstarter up to the top ready to start. You should still have the clutch pulled in, NEVER release it or the plates will stick together and it'll be harder to start.


MotoGreg - The voice of absurdity

'99 WR400 - 'Cause thumpers rule and two-strokes drool!

'92 GSXR 7/11 (But I wanna get a dope 916)

I might let you visit my photo album for $3 - ENTER AT YOUR OWN RISK - DANGER LURKS WITHIN

I was sick of getting bad dead engine starts and bought a 2001 KTM 400 EXC. Just push the button and go. I sympathise with you, good luck!

I felt the same way and bought the 400sx,it kicks over first time no compression release needed,no need for the e-button either.

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