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Old 09-01-2013, 12:55 PM   #1
cptmoney OP
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Honda SL350 - no start questions

So I've got an old SL350 I'm trying to get running, but I've got a few questions...

It's not currently running. The PO said it needed points, which he had but had not installed. No problem, right?

I tested for spark - and sure enough, nothing. OK - in go the points. Spark is good.

Bike still won't fire up.

A quick compression test reveals low numbers - 90 psi on it's own, as much as 115 with a spoonful of oil down the cyls.

I also adjusted the valves, with a cold bike (gotta be cold - it won't start!).

Recheck compression - still 90ish, and up to 115 with oil added.

Those figures are low, I realize that. Are they "there's no way it will start" low?

Any input on this one? Is this a set of rings, at the very least? Or maybe a head gasket - or both? You wouldn't do one without the other...I got that. Prob have to just pull the head to get an idea of what all is going on in there first, yeah?
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Old 09-01-2013, 02:08 PM   #2
NJ-Brett
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It should start, and do not worry about the compression till its running, things might need to seat after sitting.
Check that the timing is right, that you have spark on the compression stokes.
If you are off, you will get spark on the exhaust stoke.
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Old 09-01-2013, 02:41 PM   #3
cptmoney OP
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Thanks for the quick reply, NJ-Brett -

So.....I have a question about the timing:

I have a manual, and it's calling for a "self-powered timing light". I only have a traditional "gun style" timing light...will that work? I have no idea what a "self-powered" timing light might be.

A quick google search finds one different than what I have. I hope mine will work.

When you said the timing might be off, I think you're on to something there. While trying to start it, I gave it a little spray of starter fluid in the carbs and hit the starter. It sort of kicked a bit then flames came out the carbs! Both carbs were just a ball of fire. I did it again, and flames came out the exhaust pipes (there are no mufflers on it right now).

Your timing suggestion might have been spot on -

Can I time it without the "self-powered" timing light?
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Old 09-01-2013, 02:50 PM   #4
joexr
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Your regular timing light will work. Makes no sense that they specify.
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Old 09-01-2013, 02:58 PM   #5
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Tell us about the carburetors..... have you been through them? As a quick test, pull the plugs, put a teaspoon of gas in the holes, put the plugs in, it should start and run a few cycles. Tells you what to do next.
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Old 09-01-2013, 03:01 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cptmoney View Post
Thanks for the quick reply, NJ-Brett -

So.....I have a question about the timing:

I have a manual, and it's calling for a "self-powered timing light". I only have a traditional "gun style" timing light...will that work? I have no idea what a "self-powered" timing light might be.

A quick google search finds one different than what I have. I hope mine will work.

When you said the timing might be off, I think you're on to something there. While trying to start it, I gave it a little spray of starter fluid in the carbs and hit the starter. It sort of kicked a bit then flames came out the carbs! Both carbs were just a ball of fire. I did it again, and flames came out the exhaust pipes (there are no mufflers on it right now).

Your timing suggestion might have been spot on -

Can I time it without the "self-powered" timing light?
You used way too much ether
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Old 09-01-2013, 07:56 PM   #7
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YOu can also check timing with a meter. Test one lead at a time and put the meter on beep, it should quit beeping when you reach LF on the flywheel, then F for the right side.....at least I think that's how they're labled on the SL flywheel. Remember, shaft spins counterclockwise.
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Old 09-02-2013, 11:07 AM   #8
cptmoney OP
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Hey - thanks for the input, everyone!

I haven't done a single thing with the carbs; I'll do the "pull a plug and drop in some gas" test this evening.

How much ether is too much? A single spray? I've been told all sorts of varying things about that stuff that I don't know who/what to believe. I had it, so I used it. Prob should just stick with gasoline.

Also - I like the idea of using the volt meter to check timing. That will be pretty simple for me to verify....so I'll check that this evening while I'm looking at the carbs. I'll let you know what I find!
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Old 09-02-2013, 11:09 AM   #9
cptmoney OP
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And you all think it will fire, even with low compression figures like that?

Gosh - I think my weedeater runs nearly twice the compression that this thing is showing.

Should I put a tablespoon of the famous Marvel Mystery Oil down the cylinders for a night or two? Just to let it soak and work its magic? I've had weird success with this stuff before...
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Old 09-02-2013, 11:17 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hardwaregrrl View Post
YOu can also check timing with a meter. Test one lead at a time and put the meter on beep, it should quit beeping when you reach LF on the flywheel, then F for the right side.....at least I think that's how they're labled on the SL flywheel. Remember, shaft spins counterclockwise.
I'm just using the volt meter to check for continuity here, right? Nothing fancy, just connect one probe to each side of the points? I want continuity to stop at EXATCLY LF on the left, and EXACTLY F for the right cylinder - correct? Right at the break in continuity, I'll have spark at the cylinder - and I want that at exactly LF and F - correct?

You're right, btw - it's LF and F for this bike. And yep, she's spinning ccw.

I'm ready to check it out!
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Old 09-02-2013, 01:03 PM   #11
baldman1
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You do have a good battery, right? The SL350 will not fire without a good battery.
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Old 09-02-2013, 01:05 PM   #12
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You do have a good battery, right? The SL350 will not fire without a good battery.

Yes - good battery.

It's getting spark when I pull the plug and ground it to the head. You can see bright spark while cranking it over.

Not sure that just that qualifies it as a "good" battery - anything else I should be checking? The PO SAID he just put it in not too long ago...and it's holding a charge nicely so far.
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Old 09-02-2013, 03:03 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cptmoney View Post
I'm just using the volt meter to check for continuity here, right? Nothing fancy, just connect one probe to each side of the points? I want continuity to stop at EXATCLY LF on the left, and EXACTLY F for the right cylinder - correct? Right at the break in continuity, I'll have spark at the cylinder - and I want that at exactly LF and F - correct?

You're right, btw - it's LF and F for this bike. And yep, she's spinning ccw.

I'm ready to check it out!
Remove one wire at a time, as there is only 2 ground the meter, then pos lead clipped to the wire you removed from the points into the loom. Then spin the motor COUNTERCLOCKWISE with the meter on beep, it'll beep then it should cut off as the mark passes the LF or the F on the flywheel, the beep should go out. that's how you know it's firing at the right time for that side. I'll see if I can find a vid as I don't have a honda right now. Don't forget to set the points gap first....14k

hardwaregrrl screwed with this post 09-02-2013 at 03:08 PM
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Old 09-02-2013, 03:12 PM   #14
cptmoney OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hardwaregrrl View Post
Remove one wire at a time, as there is only 2 ground the meter, then pos lead clipped to the wire you removed from the points into the loom. Then spin the motor COUNTERCLOCKWISE with the meter on beep, it'll beep then it should cut off as the mark passes the LF or the F on the flywheel, the beep should go out. that's how you know it's firing at the right time for that side. I'll see if I can find a vid as I don't have a honda right now. Don't forget to set the points gap first....14k
OK - I just verified that the points are set correctly; they're showing .014 gap, which is in line with the .012-.016 that the manual calls for. That's with the cam opening them at the widest point.

If I recall correctly, the front set of points (this bike has two sets of points) is the left cyl, and the rear is the right - does that sound correct? I'm not at home just yet, so I'm going from memory here.

I'll have to verify with the manual before I make any adjustments.

Thanks again for all the input - super helpful!
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Old 09-02-2013, 06:04 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by cptmoney View Post
OK - I just verified that the points are set correctly; they're showing .014 gap, which is in line with the .012-.016 that the manual calls for. That's with the cam opening them at the widest point.

If I recall correctly, the front set of points (this bike has two sets of points) is the left cyl, and the rear is the right - does that sound correct? I'm not at home just yet, so I'm going from memory here.

I'll have to verify with the manual before I make any adjustments.

Thanks again for all the input - super helpful!
I'm a bit of a bonehead.....but that sure sounds right. grease the leading edge of the rubbing block as well.....so the left block will be the top left edge and the right block will be the bottom right edge.
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