need help with a hard starting 600R

hey guys I am new to the forum, I just started riding on-off road. I rode observed trials for 12 years and also break a few laws on my FZR 1000 on the street.

My problem is with my 95 600R Honda is that it is almost impossible to start with out rolling it down the hill, my other bike which is a 87 XL 650 starts when it is 20 degrees without any trouble.. The bike runs like a million once it is started, good power, on the bottom end, the exhaust has had the baffle removed, it has a free flow air cleaner, and according to the last owner has been jeted with larger main and pilot jets. The plug seems fine in coloration and gives me a nice blue spark, it did seem dry for a bike that would not start. I am wondering if the removal of the exhaust back preasure by taking out the baffles has somehow effected the starting of the bike, Once it is warm it starts right up.. Happy with how it runs but don't think I would want to take it anywhere in the truck were I could not bump start it, any advice would be greatly appreciated..Bob


First thing, do you know the starting drill with a large 4 stroke? I know you said you have a XL650 but is that an electric start? Do you know how how to prime and start the 600? Just in case you don't here you go. Put the choke on full with full throttle and the decompression release on. Kick it about 5-8 times put the choke back to Half and kick it with no gas. It should fire. If not do it again, maybe with no choke depending on how warm it is out side

If the bike runs fine warm or hot it's most likely jetted right. Do you hear any poping when you back off the gas? I'm woundering if it's lean on the low end. I guess if it had a tight valve you would have problems too. How does the compression feel when you kick it over?

This might sound silly but have you seen the choke plate? XR's have problems with the choke plates braking apart and getting sucked in the engine. The choke plate could be broken off. If it is, then your basicly starting with no choke. What if you spray starting fluid in behind the air cleaner when it won't start and see if it fires. That will tell you if your not getting enough fuel.

You might want to check your compression also. If it starts with the fluid it might be a little low.

God bless you Moredesert for your starting procedure!

Man, I changed jets, checked valves, cleaned filters and nothing seems to help in this cold weather. Now I follow your procedure and the bike starts on first kick!


MoreDesert.. You are a star... Thanks for the advice, I just got back from being out of town and read your note,, Ran right out to the shop and tried your starting method on the 600R... Started right up.. first time that has happened since I got the bike.. Thanks a ton .. :lol:Bob

I use a similar procedure to moredesert's, but I don't open the throttle, and I don't kick so many times. For my '96 XR600 that has been uncorked similarly to yours, I do the following:

For my first start of the day, regardless of temperature (I live in California):

Full choke

Pull in compression release lever

3-4 kicks

Release lever

kick to TDC (when the kick lever stops)

Keep pressure on kick lever and pull in compression release slowly until the kick lever goes just past TDC.

Kick through fully and fast.

As soon as it's idling, I move to half choke, and pretty quickly to no choke.

You may find it easier to do this with the bike on level ground and the kickstand down. With just a little practice, you can balance on the left footpeg only. It makes it easier to get all the way through the stroke when you kick.

If I have started the bike that day (if it's been warmed), I do the same, but with no choke. If I just turned it off, I don't go through the priming drill, I just find TDC and start it.

The only time I use full throttle is if I have flooded the bike (translation: dumped it). Then, I turn off the fuel, open the throttle, and kick the crap out of it 10 or 15 times. The idea is to clear out everything from the carb and cylinder. Then, I turn the fuel back on, and do my normal start routine, without choke. Fires right up.

If you know the drill, particularly the flooded drill, starting big four-strokes will hold no more fear.

Good luck.

10x for the advice bajajoaquin. I will try it.

I don't understand what good will be to turn off the fuel as there is plenty of fuel in the carb, unless you chick your bike ... say 100 times :)

To be honest, I don't have a well-reasoned reply to that. I picked up that tip from somewhere and have used it ever since. I used to have real problems restarting, but now I don't.

The other trick is to give up early. If I dump my bike and it won't fire on the first or second kick, I just go into my "flooded" routine. Before, I would sit there and get tired and frustrated trying to get the darn thing started. By the time I gave in, I would be out of breath and upset. Now, I just give up, go through the flooded drill, and get going in a couple of minutes.

I would think the reason to turn the fuel off is to prevent any more from getting into the system. Yes there is plenty in the carb, but if you leave the fuel on it has NO chance of clearing out.

With my 650R, I have NEVER been able to re-light it with the kick starter when I left the fuel on.

All good advice which I had not known until signing up to this forum.. When riding trials it is important to be able to start your bike while balancing it. I can normally balance the bike in a section, reach over with my throttle hand, turn down the kick starter and give it a quarter of a kick and have it running.. This bike I have found if dumped on the right side will start right up, if dumped on the left I have to use the flooded method to get it started,,On it best day it is not a trials bike..Thanks for sharing the info otherwise I would just keep kicking,, it does take some getting use to..

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