Each month we receive an overwhelming amount of technical questions from our readers. Everyone at ATVR including the night janitor carries an extremely heavy workload, so as a last resort we were forced to put Mike Newsom in charge of answering your questions. Mikey is one of the most talented mechanics we know, but it's his off-the-wall remarks and repulsive attitude that keep him locked away in the garage. If you dare to bear his response, send your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org. We promise not to let Mikey use your name and embarrass you in front of your buddies.
Ask: I have a Kazuma Falcon 110 and it has no spark. I replaced the coil and CDI module. What's next, the stator? All of the connections seem to be OK and I don't have the cash to take it to a dealer. Can you please help me?
Mikey: If you're just replacing parts at random until you happen to stumble upon the one that's broken, I'd say the stator would be next in line. I'm not very familiar with Kazuma and thought I would take a look at their manual to try and help you out. Here's a quote from the second page of the manual as it is written in broken English. I didn't bother to correct the grammar.
"Make sure the engine cut out switch is at the 'ON' position before starting the bike. The engine won't started if the switch is at 'OFF', and a continual pushing start bottom will damage the CDI, Coil and Regulator."
The entire manual is written in this kindergarten fashion. The funny thing is that these guys who can't spell "button" also built your quad! I also understand that it's a good idea to replace the 10-cent factory-installed D8EA plug with a NGK C7HSA.
Ask: I have a 2007 Yamaha YFZ450 with some engine mods, and I installed an FCR 41mm carburetor. Now it spits and sputters at low throttle but runs great at full throttle. I was told to check my pilot jet by running my fuel screw all the way in and to see if it dies, but it didn't. I was told it was too big, so I went down to the stock pilot and still have the same problem. Do I keep going smaller even though it's smaller than stock?
Mikey: This answer should be a piece of cake with the abundance of information you gave me on your engine modifications. Now, we both know that if your beast of a YFZ is in need of a larger carburetor, it doesn't make sense that you would need a pilot jet that's smaller than stock. Are you even qualified to be working on a carburetor? A stock YFZ450 comes with a 45 pilot jet and can benefit from a 46. Depending on the extent of your modifications you may even need to go as large as a 48. Investing in an NCVQ needle is also a good idea. It's the stock needle from a YZF450 and comes in Yamaha's YFZ GYTR package.
Ask: Hi Mikey, I'm stuck in the middle of Africa with two Suzuki 750 4x4 quads. Both had the same initial problem of backfiring when starting. The problem has now gotten worse, and they're not running at all. I've changed the plugs and filters and cleaned the fuel tank. Please help, as I'm now desperate. Many thanks from Kigali, Rwanda.
Mikey: Don't write in and expect me to feel sorry for you! I have a garage full of ATVs and I'm stuck behind a computer because you can't seem to keep your KingQuads running. Having two exact machines with this same progressive problem leads me to believe there is trash in Rwanda's fuel. I see you changed the plugs and filters. I'm guessing you are referring to the air filters. While you had the ATV apart to clean the fuel tank, did you happen to check the fuel filter that's in the fuel pump? If they're dirty as I suspect, you should jump on your elephant and make your way to the nearest village with a Suzuki dealership for a new fuel filter.
Ask: I'm having problems with the front differential lock on my Yamaha Rhino. It makes the noise like it's locking in but is not working. Someone told me the magnets inside are bad. If this is true, how do I clean them?
Mikey: I think you misunderstood when you heard that you had dirty magnets. My guess is that you were actually told you had a few loose screws. On the differential you will find a cover that conceals the differential-lock mechanism. Inside is a gear that rides on threads that actuates the diff-lock, and it's not uncommon for this gear to get out of alignment. You may need to shift the gear back into position where it can make connection to the threads. If you do find some dirty magnets, I would wash them with soapy water and put them back on the refrigerator.
Ask: I recently purchased a 2002 Honda 400EX. I didn't realize it until I got home, but it had a major oil leak. After further inspection I found it was coming from a threaded hole on the back right of the motor. I was told that on some quads this was where the timing chain-tensioner bolt went, but the 400EX doesn't have one. I heard I should just plug up the hole with a very short bolt. How accurate is this information?
Mikey: True, that hole is where some bikes have a timing tensioner bolt, but only the ones that don't leak oil! When you say the 400EX doesn't have a timing tensioner bolt, you should really be saying that your particular 400EX doesn't have a timing tensioner bolt. And yes, this is why your 400EX is leaking oil. You're in need of a 6X16 flange washer and a 6X6 pan screw. These will cost you a grand total of about five bucks from Honda. I bet the guy who sold you the 400EX would give you a great deal on the very parts you need. LMAO!
Ask: Hi Mikey! I have a 1995 Kawasaki Bayou. I have taken care of it but now suddenly it will hardly go. The shifter shifts, but when I take off, the rpm increase? and I'm not getting any speed. I can hit third gear with little speed, but the rpm are there. The engine is running great! Thanks for any help.
Mikey: If you haven't figured out the problem, I wouldn't even begin to suggest that you try making the repair yourself! You should solicit the help of a friend or neighbor with basic mechanical skills and have him install a new clutch for you. I recommend that you stick with the parts purchase and provide a pizza and case of beer for your mechanically inclined friend.