WR400F Starting procedure

Hello everyone here at Thumpertalk!

Recently I've acquired a 2000 model Yamaha WR400F and I'm having a hell of a time working out the proper way to start it using the kickstart and manual decompression. This is probably due to the fact that I've only ridden a few bikes and they've all had autodecomp or electric start. Anyway back on topic. I understand the proper use of the hot and cold start switches, but am having a hell of a time, and a painful one at that trying to start the damn bike. Of course I've managed to start it, and on the odd occassion when I do it properly I have no problems starting it at all, but I'd like to know how to do it properly so I no longer have to put up with the odd gunshot like backfire or bone crunching blow to my knee; which I'll add is caused by the kickstart kicking back on me which you've probably figured out.

What I'm asking for is a detailed guide on how to start my bike properly, including how to find the TDC of the engine so I can finally start my bike gracefully and smooth. Any help would be appreciated. Cheers! :thumbsup:

Edit: I've just realised I put this in the wrong sub-forum. Could a moderator move this to the WR400~ forum.

I'll give this a try. I had a 1998 yz400f, beast to start untill you knew the procedure. Close to the same platform your running. I believe a lot of the parts are interchangable. Anyways here it goes.

Hold the decompression lever down with your foot on the kickstarter. If I remember right without the decompression lever held in you cannot even kick the bike over without jumping on it correct?

Apply some pressure to the kickstarter with the decompression lever pulled in, just enough to allow the kick starter to lower freely. Once the kickstand moves, listen carefully, it will make clicking noises as you lower it down, allow it to lower 3-4 clicks. Once it has clicked 3-4 times release the decompression lever and allow the kickstarter to come all the way back up.

Proceed to kick as normal. You can tell if it works because it will be easy to kick. If you went past the 3-4 click mark, it will be hard to kick.

Good luck, it's easier than it sounds. Let me know if you have questions.

1. Hold in decompression lever untill kickstarter lowers

2. lower kickstarter 3-4 clicks

3. release decommpression lever and allow kickstarter to come all the way up

4. kick the bike over and ride.

Thanks a lot mate. I had a go before and it seemed to do the trick. Hopefully my ankle and knee won't suffer anymore! I only kicked it over once because its pretty late at night and the exhaust on it really isn't designed to be quiet. Started without a problem but I'll let ya know if I have any more issues!

When I purchased the bike the previous owner said something about "venting the chambers" before starting the bike cold. He held in the decomp lever and kicked it over about 8 times, give or take a few. Whats this supposed to do exactly? I tried it the day I bought the bike after a few unsuccessful starting attempts and I heard the loudest backfire I've ever heard, it sounded much the same as a gunshot and I swore it was at first; that was until I done it again later that day.

Anyway thanks a heap for the info!

What he was doing was clearing out any old fuel that was in the carb. I never had to do this when the bike was cold. But, you can do it if you ever flood your bike. To do this, you hold down the decompression lever and slowly kick the kickstarter down 5-6 times, this will clear out any excess fuel from the carb, good luck with the bike, let me know if everything works for you.

slowly kick the bike till you find the real hard spot....TDC. Them pull the decomp and push the kick starter about 1 or 2 inches. let go of the decomp and kick.

slowly kick the bike till you find the real hard spot....TDC. Them pull the decomp and push the kick starter about 1 or 2 inches. let go of the decomp and kick.

Welcome, dude! Your question is a popular one. :thumbsup: what he said. And, what I would add:

I kick 'er easy a few times with the decomp lever in to get some oil moving, then turn my throttle a couple times to squirt some fuel in the chamber. Use the choke if the engine's cold, can always try without it first. Then, find TDC as mentioned above, use the decomp lever and kick a hair past TDC, then wind the kickstart back to the top and give a strong kick - no decomp. Should be one or two at most.

When she's warm, it's always a one kick wonder. I only use the hot start when I f up and accidently kill it and/or after tip overs, but the sucker usually runs on its side faithfully waiting for me to get out of the brush!

Done properly, you can start the bike in flip flops. Improperly, you'll swear your boots aren't strong enough!

I think is has been explained well but check this out for further info.

Go to the YZ section and at the top of the page is a sticky with common threads. At the bottom of that page are two videos for proper hot and cold starting procedures.

What was said above is dead on - slow til you hit the hard spot, decom + 1-2" of kick starter, decomp off, kick it once hard!

A couple more things to add:

1. yes, you can give the throttle 1-2 cranks to squirt in a bit of fuel to help it along - I find my 2000 doesn't ever require that it fires on first kick every time even after a complete teardown of the carb.

2. DON'T touch the throttle at all when you kick it - as a matter of fact, many here state to just place the right hand on the tank, even the slightest throttle movement on kicking can stop it from firing.

3. You likely won't need the choke unless it's below 40 out.

4. I've yet to need the Hotstart either - once you have this procedure down, it just seems to always fire right away.

5. If it doesn't fire on first kick, do the same procedure over again.

6. If you do have problems firing it - most likely you need a new spark plug

7. If the spark plug doesn't fix it, check your valve clearances, if they're tight it can cause starting issues.

8. If you don't have a fuel screw, get one - Zip Ty makes a really good one, but check what'll fit your carb, mine was supposed to have the first generation screw, but after looking at the carb, it required the screw for the 01 and up models.

Since it's new to you - next bad weather weekend, give the carb a really good cleaning/teardown/rebuild of everything, check your valve clearances, and just give it a good once over to make sure it's all up to snuff - they're tough bikes, but require some maintenance to continue running like clockwork.

Congrats on your purchase - you'll love this bike!

Havn't got a problem at all starting her now, she runs like a dream! Thanks to everyone for helping out; saved me a hell of a lot of stuffing around :thumbsup: . Its a fantastic bike to ride, I think I've got many miles of riding to look forward to. Now if you'll excuse me, thats exactly what I'm going to do :thumbsup:

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