Won't Start, Carb issue.

First off my bike is a 01 WR426, and is jetted properly and has run and started fine every year up until now. I am the only owner of the bike, and have had it since 2001, so I know this bike in and out. This not a jetting or improper setup issue. I say this just to let you all know, it was not operator error or ignorance.

I was prepping the bike last evening so I can ride next weekend. The first thing I did was change the plug (since mine was 3+ years old at least) and drain the gas completely. After that I could not get the bike to start no matter what I would do. I could get the bike to backfire through the exhaust when holding the decomp lever with the throttle open to clear the carb, while kicking it through a bunch of times. To me this indicated that I was getting a spark.

Then I noticed that there was gas leaking out of the overflow tubes indicating that I had either a stuck needle valve, or a mis-adjusted float level. I inspected the carb and the float was correct. There was a little sediment on the gasket of the valve seat which was cleaned off. To test the needle valve, the bottom of the carb was off and I connected the gas. While pushing up on the floats to seal the needle valve I turned on the gas and it kept dripping. I would suspect that the gas was leaking around the outside of the seat, and not the valve itself since it looked good. Either way, I have on order a new needle valve and seat. I am hoping this solves things, but unfortunately I won't get the parts until Wednesday at the earliest and I am leaving to ride on Friday.

Assuming this solves my fuel leaking issue and the bike still doesn't start what else would you look at. I am looking for different scenarios that are typical problems after winter storage. My valves were perfectly in spec last spring, and the bike ran perfectly on the last ride of the 2008 season. Since I will have an evening and a half at best to get the bike running, I want to prepare for as many different tests as I can ahead of time. This way I won't be waiting for forum responses at 2 am, praying that I won't run out of time before it is time to leave.

I appreciate any thoughts and suggestions. Thanks.

There is a oring at the needle seat, very common for these to fail well before you need to replace the needle and seat. While the carb is off, ensure the pilot jet is spotless. If in doubt, replace, do not try to clean. I suggest you also check your valve clearances.

I'd go right at the pilot jet if it still won't start.

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