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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
hi all, so being new to the Lake Michigan area, I unintentionally left my 92' Vulcan VN1500 sit for a year and a half and the climate here just rusted the bike, sweat, cold to hot days...it was bad!

So got a new battery, starter won’t turn, rear tire locked up when in 1st gear. (bike rolls n neutral). I put WD40 into the cylinders overnight. Pistons Now move when pushed. Starter still froze or gears / internal chains and the like still rusted.

QUESTION – Can I pour WD40 into the crankcase / tranny / clutch, roll it back and forth it in 1st gear to lube things, and drain after a day or so?

Will that product hurt any seals? Anyone had luck reviving an engine after this issue using this method?
 

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I would NOT use WD40 in the crank case.
If i were to try this i would use marvel mystery oil. Add a 12 oz bottle to oil and just turn engine over using tire and let it soak.
It would work better with a heated up engine but will help removes deposits and lube up everything.
For the starter have you confirmed that the power is getting to the starter?
If it sat for that long you may have had a critter chew a wire or 2 or the elements could have corroded a hot or ground wore so that the power isnt even getting to the starter. you will need a multimeter.
If poser is getting to the starter then try to give the starter a couple of whacks with a hammer( your trying to free it up not kill it so not hard enough to dent anything just solid whacks)
If no power to starter start your back tracing look at neutral safety switch, kick stand switch, Run/stop switch and starter button for possible causes in addition to looking for a damaged wire or corroded hot or ground wire.
Its likely that sitting that long exposed the rings tried to weld themselves to the cylinder wall. Get some of the same stuff MMO and squirts it into the cylinders and let them sit it will help brak up the ridge ring that would have been left where they seized.
It is possible to bring the bike back but it will depend on the ammount of damage to the cylinder walls. If there inst much then the rings will smooth the walls back out and it will be all good. If there is you will notice a loss of compression and blow by which will mean a new top end. Not a terrible job but not super cheap either.
You will need to check and clean your fuel system and i would flush your brake sines with new fluid as well.. Carbs are probably gummed up and will need to be cleaned as well, Check for rust in tank.
It will be some work to get her back to the land of the safe to drive but she is in this condition because she was neglected. Neglect has costs
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you for your advise. I'm grateful as you saved me from an incorrect hear-say mistake. We all have our skill sets, mine is not internal engine chemicals. Your correct about neglect. sadly the selfish souls that caused me injury, leaving me unable to move caused great neglect, cost and mental anguish to much, much more than my beloved motorcycle! (ive missed her very much) Personally, i don't blame people for their mistakes, however i do as they pay for them. But thats way off topic, now isnt it?

Be safe, ride well and prosper...
 

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I did not intend to come off as if the neglect was intentional or due to being lazy was not implying that at all and apologize if it came off that way, I only realized it upon rereading the post. simply pointing out that unless a bike is drained of all fluids and parked in a clean climate controlled environment there will always be costs to getting them back on the road when they are not exercised and cared for on the regular. this goes for just about any machine i get a bunch of small engine machines every spring because owners store them in the fall full of untreated fuel and forget about them for 6 to 7 months and when they come back they wont run so they go and buy another one.
Sorry to hear that yo were laid up and i hope that you are able to get your bike back on the road and be out riding again. keep us posted as you progress and we will help with what we can.
 

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I use transmission fluid to unlock engines but that may not be good for your clutch plates. You're likely going to need to replace the starter, or at minimum remove it and let it soak in something like ChemDip. If there is still clean oil in the crankcase I doubt that the transmission is locked up. If I had a bike that was locked up from sitting what I would do is fill the cylinders with transmission fluid and let it sit for a day or two. I'd work the flywheel back and forth until the cylinders free up, then drain the transmission fluid. From there I'd flush the engine to get as much of the ATF out as possible, then fill it with the cheapest 15-40 diesel oil I could find. You're probably going to have to rebuild the carbs as well. Once you get that done, run the engine for a few minutes. Drain the oil, change the filter and refill it with more cheap diesel oil. Ride it around and see how the clutch is acting. It will probably be fine but there's a chance you'll need to replace it. After about 100 miles change the oil and filter with whatever you prefer to run. Personally I run Rotella in all my v-twins.
 

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Soak the cylinders some more.
If you have the neutral finder preventing you from getting into higher gears.. you can push it in neutral to get a little speed and hit second ... after that just rock the bike to shift into the higher gears
Nothing should be rusted beyond the cylinder bore..possibly valve rusted sticking it in the guide..thin oil is your friend...you can cut the oil with a little gas as well.
Adding anything to your crankcase will not help with rusted cylinders..or a stuck valve if something else is rusted besides the bore.or valve..pretty sure it will destroy itself rather quickly.
High gear...use rear wheel to get the engine freed up...don't use alot of force but rather alot of easy movements. .(could have a stuck valve as well)..go easy
After freed up...then you can see if that starter is dragging

Sent from my SM-A115U1 using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
@ Plee911, no worries, im sure im over sensitive too as I’m just crushed at the results I’m dealing with, I ride enough that I rarely winterize anyway.

Something is still stuck as she wont do a complete revolution, however there is about 6-8" of tire movement in first gear now. This morning a added generous amounts of marvel mystery oil to both cylinders, as well as the crankcase, just in case. Thank you for the Carb & Starter tips, I will make that the next investigation!
 

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Hi Total,
  • Have you tried to rotate the engine by hand using the crankshaft with the transmission in Neutral?
  • You should be able to see some valve movement in the cylinder and the vertical position of the piston so you can avoid damaging a valve. Start by rotating the high piston down and keep an eye on the low piston coming up.
  • Ideally, you would like to see the valve movement from the rocker but that requires engine removal according to the manual. See it here: KAWASAKI VN1500 SERVICE MANUAL Pdf Download
  • A stuck intake valve could be impacted by an exhaust valve during overlap.
  • Did you have power at the lights, meters and switches when you turned the key on?
  • If so, did you hear the starter solenoid click when you pressed the starter button?
  • Based on what you have described, it is probably best that the starter didn't operate.
  • Remove it and bench test with the battery you just bought.
  • While it's removed, cover the starter cable end that was removed to avoid a direct short and test the remainder of the starter system. That would include the starter, clutch, sidestand and neutral switches and, the starter solenoid.
  • Make sure hi/low beam and brake lights, etc. operate.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
@MotoMedic1 Thanks for this, the valves seem suspect so far, I have some investigation starting points now thanks to all of you. Honestly, if i could lift more that a gallon of milk i would just pull the engine and have it gone through and refurb. She is very low miles, (20? K original) was in cold storage for many years when i bought her! what a shame. Ive never seen such rust all over everything as i have here at lake Michigan! ugh

Im gona go cry into my pillow now, thanks again guys
 

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It does sound like maybe you have a valve stuck open and its hitting the piston or another valve,
As has been said above go easy so you dont damage anything. Check out he valves. If one is stuck MMO or tranny fluid should be able to get it moving again, Sometimes a tap with a hammer if you can get to it helps a lot as well. If you were not on the other side of the country i would happily come give you a hand. Arizona is a bit to far unfortunately.
Just keep going slow and steady and you will get her back
 
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