T140E hard to start cold without starting fluid - Page 2 - Triumph Forum: Triumph Rat Motorcycle Forums
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post #11 of 16 (permalink) Old 05-03-2019, 11:56 AM
Main Motorcycle: 1978 Triumph Bonneville
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If it's dumping gas after a few kicks with the chokes on (lever down) you are flooding it. Throttle position is important on starting these. During the first kicks keep the throttle barely cracked and be prepared to open it once it catches. If after a couple of kicks it doesn't start it's likely flooded, shown by the gas dumping. Now you need to open the throttle about 3/4 to allow more air in to clear the excess gas. In my experience it's pretty easy to flood these and opening the throttle most of the way to wide open is the only way to clear it.

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post #12 of 16 (permalink) Old 05-03-2019, 12:13 PM
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My T140D with MK2's will start cold on one kick if I apply the enrichment, one easy kick with the ignition off, then key on, a stout kick with about 1/4 throttle....If I use no throttle it won't won't start with 10 kicks.Warmed up it'll start on one kick with 1/4 throttle and no need for enrichment....Each bike is different I suppose...
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post #13 of 16 (permalink) Old 05-03-2019, 12:51 PM
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Originally Posted by tjsei View Post
An update for anyone interested.

After removing, wire probing, and thoroughly cleaning out the cold start and pilot jets, I've been able to start the bike several times without needing any starter fluid. Many thanks to all for sharing your experience.

As a follow up, I do find that it takes about a dozen attempts to kick start the bike in order to get it started from cold. (about 3-4 with chokes on until I smell gas, then another 9-10 with chokes closed before it finally fires up). I can't help but assume I should be able to do better than that, though I'm not sure where I adjust from here. Any thoughts? Perhaps it will get better after getting some runtime after 36 years in hibernation?

In addition, I've noted that kicking over the bike with the chokes on eventually starts dumping gas out of the air vent pipes on either side of the carb body. Is this normal if you keep the chokes open too long or do I need to go back through the carbs again and adjust further?
Hi Tj
We are always interested

Triumph motorcycles are not known for being hard or fussy starters, if I ever have to use more than two kicks with the ignition on then I suspect something else is wrong.

The enrichment device is not like a normal choke, if you open the throttle the venturi effect is lost that pulls the extra fuel in, but if you donít open the throttle the engine does not catch and start.

I am not sure I have much more to add to the starting technique that I have found with the mk2 carb, this seems to have been covered by others who seem to start them in a similar fashion to me-it is good that there is a consensus of opinion.
Like Trident 150 I use 2-3 kicks with ignition off, but only to build 40-50psi oil pressure before firing the engine.

Bring the pistons close to tdc switch the ignition on and give a good kick, extra fuel will be drawn in through the enrichment device, about 2/3 of the way down crack the throttle 1/4 to1/2 open-fires up just about every time.

One thing I noticed with mk2 carbs is you need choke with a cold engine and do not need it with a hot engine, but if your engine is warm, maybe stopped for 20 minutes, you will need choke to get a first kick start.

I believe the mk1 carb requires a different starting regime.

The only mk2 carbed bike that I had and was a pig to start, broke down with a coil failure, once I replaced the coils it instantly became a one kick wonder. I had already rebuilt the carbs 3-4 times trying to fix it. Iím not saying your coils are bad, but everything has to be right, not just the carbs.

What method did you use to balance the carbs?
For the pilot mixture screws, start at 2 1/2 turns out, when the engine is hot, screw them in until the engine starts to fail on tickover, then screw them out until the engine starts to fail, note the number of turns between these two points, and set the screw half way between the two.
Take a ride, if there is a hesitation or flat spot just as you start to accelerate, adjust the screws, until it is minimised - this can make the tickover lumpy due to the mixture being rich, you just have to make a compromise.
I believe I have seen a post by either gpz or johntioc where they drill the side of the needle jet to fine tune this phenomenon.

Best regards

Last edited by Rancidpegwoman; 05-03-2019 at 11:32 PM.
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post #14 of 16 (permalink) Old 05-06-2019, 12:31 AM Thread Starter
Main Motorcycle: 1979 Triumph Bonneville
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You all are the best.

After reading all of your various starting techniques, I was able to start mine today from cold on the third kick. It was very gratifying to say the least.

Even better, the bike rode its first 22 miles after 36 years of ‘sleep’. What an awesome machine. It’s going to be a fun summer.

Have a great week everyone!!

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post #15 of 16 (permalink) Old 05-06-2019, 09:39 AM
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My T140E fired up this morning on one kick. Temperature in the garage probably about 60F. I use the cold start plungers and turn the throttle as I kick. I turn the plungers off as soon as its running, then warm up for a short minute at about 2000rpm. My bike doesn't want to idle even after this short warm up, but a short, slow ride down the block and back to the driveway and it idles fine. Warm starts can vary as others have said. Make shutting off fuel flow a habit. I avoid using the side stand for parking unless its just a quick stop. Any restart after 20-30 minutes parked and I get a one kick start with the aid of the CS plungers. I do like the idea of an "ignition off"kick over to prime the oiling system, at least on the first start of the day, so might incorporate that into my routine. I've also found that my clutch still is very stubborn to free up on the first start of the day so after starting, I pull the clutch in several times during the short warm up along with a few revs each time, and the clutch frees up. As an alternative , I have put the bike in gear before attempting to start it, pulled in the clutch and rocked the bike to free the clutch. If you have ever had your bike lunge on you after failing to free the clutch in some manner, you know the importance of following the procedure.
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post #16 of 16 (permalink) Old 05-08-2019, 04:14 PM
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The "official" clutch freeing is to kick the bike over with the clutch pulled in. Unless the plates are really stuck (which needs looking at) then the kickstarter normally frees the clutch up
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