Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: A stone's throw from Luckenbach, TX
Year/Make/Model: 1996 Kawasaki Vulcan 800 Classic
What did I miss? Troubleshooting. IC Igniter?
Just bought 1996 Classic 800 w/18K miles—my second one to own. NOTE: I did a title check and it has changed hands many times and in short periods of time indicating no PO’s could fix the bike. I don’t want to be a title statistic. LOL I think I found the problem.
Symptoms: Bike starts right up with choke on and idles only on choke. Take if off choke it dies, or if you throttle it with choke off, it barely runs with seemingly no power. Drove it around block. No power. Will not idle with choke off. Compression 165 and 175 (cold). All valve clearances set perfectly by me, first thing I checked. All were out of spec and 2 intakes were at zero.
1. Classic pilot jet plugged symptom, right? Disassembled and cleaned carb, it was pristine.
2. Drained gas, milky in color. Orange tint. Changed gas. No improvement (NI).
3. There was a little fuel filter with inline 1/4 turn valve. Restriction? Took it all off and put on factory fuel line. NI.
4. Petcock leaks on both RES and ON. Replaced w/OEM petcock. NI. Replaced vacuum line from petcock to carb. NI.
5. Pulled coils, both tested good per Kawa manual.
6. Trimmed coil leads and plug leads and reinserted. NI.
7. Finally I checked for sparks using both the plugs and spark tester. I found a weak orange spark on front. NO SPARK on rear! (SEE POST #19)
8. Swapped wires. NI.
9. Swapped coils, same as if I’d not swapped them. Weak orange spark on front, no spark on rear.
10. Tested pick up coil per Kawa manual. Tested good.
11. Continuity good from IC Igniter to rear coil.
So I tested the IC Igniter per Kawa manual. I have a Fluke digital but did not use it per reading Kawa manual and forums. So I bought an analog and used it to perform test. (I know about what the Kawa manual states about only using theirs, but I have read it’s not so much their brand as it is using an analog. Besides, if you have resistance where you are supposed to have infinity, the exact reading doesn’t matter.)
I did a meticulous test and wrote down all measurements. 68 total checks. Pin 5 showed continuity (resistance) on 5 of the 7 tests where it should have been infinity. There were 3 other readings on Pin 5 way out of range.
This brings me to the reason for this post: Before I spend big bucks on an IC Igniter, did I miss anything? Any other checks I need to do? I’m convinced the IC Igniter is bad because of Pin 5 resistances, but how many times have we been “convinced” only to find we missed something. All input appreciated.
Last edited by texasgrape; 02-18-2018 at 11:47 AM.
Reason: Added info