Turning off the. Bike - Kawasaki Vulcan Forum : Vulcan Forums
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post #1 of 43 (permalink) Old 11-12-2012, 08:30 PM Thread Starter
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Turning off the. Bike

How do younturn off your bike?
Tonight when i arrived home, i turned the bike off immediately after stoping using the handle bar switch, the bike was on 1st gear. It made a cracking sound i did not like. Do you have any idea what i was, have this ever happened to you before?
How long shouldmi wait to turn off the bike after stoping?
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post #2 of 43 (permalink) Old 11-12-2012, 09:06 PM
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I personally use the key and I don't know about a cracking sound but once in a while I hear a noise. It's a good old nothing kind of....noise but a noise.... It's a Kawasaki thing Lol
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post #3 of 43 (permalink) Old 11-12-2012, 09:11 PM
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Like a backfire? Could have just been that the engine hadn't 'spooled down' yet or that you had just a tiny feather of throttle open with your hand on the grip, and so the engine was running above idle when you shut it off. I'm sure it didn't hurt anything, just a little backfire from unburned fuel.

There are two schools of thoughts here. One is that the bike should be shut off with the key always, because the habit of using the killswitch can lead to a dead battery, if you use the killswitch but forget to turn off the key.

The other thought is, that if you use the killswitch always, you'll develop a habit that can give you quick reflexes should, in an emergency, you'd ever need to use the killswitch. This is presently what the MSF teaches.

I think both schools of thought are valid. Some have said 'Use the kill switch only in emergencies so you don't wear it out', but I don't buy it. It's highly unlikely that you'll 'wear out' the killswitch with use. It won't hurt anything to do EITHER.

I personally use the kill switch. The reason is, it's awkward for me to reach down where the key is on the 900 (like most Vulcans it's up against my thigh!). So I prefer to hit the kill switch, get off, then turn the key off and remove it. Knock on wood, but I've never ever left the key on on my bike. I also live in an apartment complex and, with loud pipes, I don't like to disturb people at night. So coming down the hill into the parking lot I hit the kill switch, then coast into my spot. Would be hard to shut the key off rolling, plus, then I'd lose my headlight!

One suggestion; don't shut it off as you roll to a stop or immediately after stopping (when I shut mine off on the hill as described, I pull the clutch in and wait a second for the engine to return to idle before doing so). You might also try developing a habit of taking your hand off the grip and shutting the bike off with your index finger, which will prevent the possibility that as you grip the handlebar to hit the switch, you're cracking the throttle open. I don't think there is any set 'time' to wait to shut down a naturally aspirated engine (on an engine with a turbocharger it can sometimes be a good idea to let it idle for a few seconds before shutting it down, but that's not the case here!). Just make sure the engine has completely returned to idle, and the throttle is completely released. If at all possible, the engine shouldn't be shut down above idle speed.

Finally, you could just switch to using the key, but if you leave the bike in gear when you stop (like on a hill or something) that could certainly be a pain in the behind!

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post #4 of 43 (permalink) Old 11-12-2012, 09:13 PM
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I usually use the kill switch, with bike in gear. I never park my bike unless in gear anymore. Sometimes do notice a clanking sound when I shut it off, think it all depends on how close it is to fireing when the ignition is cutoff. I think if it is at the top of the compression stroke, that pressure trys to force the piston to reverse direction. Could be wrong, JMO.
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post #5 of 43 (permalink) Old 11-12-2012, 09:21 PM Thread Starter
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I think you nailed it, you made me think, and the engine was running above iddle, it wasnt a backfire, it came from under the tank, to the righthand side.
I already lost my bettery once on a bad neighborhood, i left the bike at a church parking lot, it was midday, and theywere closing at 2pm, i went to get a new battery, they gave it to me without the screws, the screws i had were too small, so i had to go and get new screws from a hardware store and did not fit. Time was ticking, finally a was able to put the screws at an angle and was able to bring the bike home. If the bike was left overnight at that place it was going to be the last time a saw it.
I'm trying to teach myself to turn it off using the key, but all habits are hard to kill.
Thanks for your advice
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post #6 of 43 (permalink) Old 11-12-2012, 09:41 PM
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I was riding down a lone desert road once and raised my hand off the throttle just a little bit to fix my riding glasses and when I grabbed the rightside throttle grip again I accidentally hit the kill switch with my thumb. Wish they would put that thing just a little bit further away. Haha!
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post #7 of 43 (permalink) Old 11-12-2012, 09:51 PM
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I roll to a stop, put the bike in neutral, put out the kick stand, lean the bike onto the kick stand, reach down and turn off the key. Whole process takes 10-15 seconds.
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post #8 of 43 (permalink) Old 11-12-2012, 10:19 PM
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It may be all wrong, but about half the time I put it in neutral, put down the kick stand and turn it off at the key. That depends on location, for example I do it in the garage. If I leave it in gear I put the kick stand down and turn off the key. Either way, the bike is completely stopped.

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post #9 of 43 (permalink) Old 11-12-2012, 11:52 PM
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The only time I park the bike in neutral is in my garage. I've had a bike roll off the side stand one too many times to trust it to stay upright. Besides, you can't always trust the ground to be level. My garage floor is. Just the way I do it. And I always shut it down by switching off the ignition with the key.

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post #10 of 43 (permalink) Old 11-13-2012, 04:21 AM
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I rarely use the key to shut down. Most of time I park in 1st and drop the stand to kill the engine. That way I know the stand is down when I get off. I periodically use the kill switch so I'm used to using it and sure it works. I've only left the ignition on once. Fortunately I walked in front of the bike and spotted the headlight right away.
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