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I was riding home today & the bike felt like it was wanting to die at a couple traffic lights. I thought it was getting close to needing to flip on the left reserver petcock & when it did die on a downhill, I flipped the reserve on, but about 200yds later it died again. I opened the tank & there was still a tiny amount of gas in there that I could hear swishing around. Wouldn't it have run dry before cutting out & how come the reserve didn't work at all? Anyway, AAA happened to drive by, filled me up & it started again. I don't quite get why that gas was still in there & it cut out.
 

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hmm, you said you were going downhill;
i guess depending on the style tank you have this would matter.
like i have a 70's bonnie tank and if i was going downhill for too long the gas would be at the front of the tank
or it could be something completely different
 

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For what it's worth, I had the same thing happen to me on the '70, many years ago. Flipped on the reserve and "nothing". I've run it down there a couple of times since and it's been fine. Might be a good idea to just run it on reserve once in a while to clean out the line. If you can, pull the reserve side line and make sure that fuel flows.

Just the mindless advice of the "village idiot" again: Jim
 

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Clamp 07,

Good responses from Wingnut and Jim (who is definitely NOT a village idiot, despite his assertions).

I'd like to add that the reserve petcock take fuel from lower down in the tank, and is thus more susceptible to water collecting at the bottom of the tank. I suspect that water may have collected near your reserve tap, and when you turned it on, it sent water to the carbs, causing the engine to stop fairly quickly. Check for water remnants in your carb bowl

Good idea to take the tank off occasionally and flush it out with the petcocks removed, just to get rid of any water, rust flakes etc.
 
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