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Discussion Starter #1
I made an 800 mile round trip today to look at an '04 TBS with 7,400 miles on her. This is the bike I mentioned in another thread http://www.triumphrat.net/hinckley-classic-triples/220524-looking-at-tbs.html
I got there and the bike looked in almost show room condition. One very small paint chip on the tank and a few spots of bad chrome. Nothing too bad. It also came with a windshield and passenger backrest/luggage rack.
Now for the bad. It wouldn't start. As I mentioned in the other thread it has been ridden very little this year. Thanks to the great responses in the other thread I was assuming that it not starting my be the case and it didn't. It started and ran for about 30 seconds twice but then that was it. I got some fresh gas and added some Seafoam to it. Tried to start it again, no luck. Well as it was trying to start you could smell gas fumes and I'm thinking I flooded it. I let it sit for a minute and I noticed gas coming out from close to the air filter. I remember reading from the forums here that it was a stuck carb float (I think I'm correct on that, will research more). I turned the fuel off and that took care of the leaking fuel.
Now comes decision time. We had agreed to a price of $4,000, but that was assuming a running bike. While not a steal I thought it was a fair price. Now with a bike I haven't ridden and won't start we had a different game. I told him I had an unknown quantity with the bike and didn't know what would be required to get her running. We settled on $3,500 and I brought her home. Well if it's a simple fix I got a good deal or it could turn into a money pit and I'm screwed, LOL.
I also ran the battery down a bit with trying to start it. What would be a good battery charger for me to get? Thanks for the help and get ready for some really dumb questions from me in the future after searching the forum first of course.

Mutt
 

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While you are at don't forget the petcock and tank.

And that [email protected] duckbill filter.

Get the battery tested at an auto parts store or Interstate batteries or Batteries Plus.
Make sure the battery is excellent and can hold a full charge reliably.

Hopefully that is all it will need.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I looked for a thread on cleaning the carbs but didn't see one. First dumb question of bike ownership. How do I clean the carbs? I also have to pick up a Haynes Manual.

Mutt
 

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If the bike hasn't been run and the battery is old just throw it away and buy a new battery.
These bikes can flood very easily. A trick I often use on a bike that has been sat and is hard to start is

New battery
fresh fuel with petrol tap turned off
Bradex starting fluid in the air box
Crank bike and with braces and a fresh battery it will start or you have another problem
Once the engine has fired open the throttle , choke off and let the engine catch
You may have to do this a few times but avoid the temptation of opening the throttle too. much or you will flood it.

I have had a bike before that had flooded so badly that the petrol had washed the oil off the bores which lowered the compression so it wouldn't start. A small dash of engine oil in each cylinder and a quick spin over will restore the compression and should then start

Good Luck
 

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There's a good chance that the spark plugs are fouled from flooding and earlier start ups without the motor being run long enough to fully heat up the plugs. If you're going to pull them out, which you should, this would be the ideal time to replace the original plugs with a fresh set of iridiums anyway. Again, as Jag mentioned, with the plugs out, fuel off, put a dash of engine oil down each spark plug hole, then while holding the throttle wide open, crank the engine with the starter motor for 20-30 seconds. This distributes to oil to the bores, and blows out any flooding of gas.

Important, while cranking it over, be aware of where the spark plug wires are. You don't want to knock yourself on your butt, or fire off the unburned fuel being expelled from the cylinders:)

Going through the carbs is another thing all together. Before you do, order three new float needles from Bike Bandit and put them in while you've in there. The ethanol in today's fuels causes the rubber tips to break loose or distort, hence the fuel coming out of the air filter. Also, with the float needles out, using a firm eraser like on a pen, not a pencil, clean up the seats where the needles contact. Rinse thoroughly, of course.
Replacing the float needles then requires that you check and set the float levels.

While the tank is off, remove the petcock and see what, if anything you see built up on the screen. If it is clean, and you can't see any rust looking into the tank with a bright flashlight, you're good to go. If you see any rust or crap built up on the screen, you should have the tank cleaned and possibly sealed, depending on how bad it is.

As mentioned earlier, you would want to replace or at least check and clean the duckbill filter.

It probably still has the original air filter in it. If so, you'll want to replace if while you've got it in your hand. (The carbs have to come off to replace it later)

And finally, if it's never been re-jetted, it would be a shame to have the carbs off and not do that. It can run sooo much better. Stock jets are 38 pilots and 98 mains. 42 pilots work great, and mains are somewhat dependent on other mods like free flowing exhaust, intake box mods, etc. If it's all bone stock, the quickest, cheapest thing you can do to gain some performance is to allow some more intake air in by making a hole in the back of the front airbox (on the right side) opposite of where the air comes forward from the rear airbox on the left side. Use a hole saw to make a hole about the same size as the opening on the left, use 102 mains, and you're good to go! If you don't make the hole, don't change the mains. This is a very effective little mod, trust me!
 

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Lot's of good info here. I'm taking notes.

Congrats on the bike. I'm sure you'll get her going.

But.... Where are the pics? :(
 

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Good Advice

Great tips for getting the bike up and running. You got a good one. 2004 is the last year of production for the TBS and supposedly a limited number ended up in the States. Enjoy and congradulations.......
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Sounds pretty involved for a novice wrench turner. I think if I'm doing this I'll flush the coolant also while everything is off. It all sounds do able to me except the carbs. That sounds a little scary. I'm ordering the Haynes manual today after I figure out which one it is. I guess the only way to learn is to jump in.
I took few pics this morning. Here ya go....



Mutt
 

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Whoah!
That's a really good looking bike, Mutt.
I think you stole it!
 

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Sounds pretty involved for a novice wrench turner. I think if I'm doing this I'll flush the coolant also while everything is off. It all sounds do able to me except the carbs. That sounds a little scary. I'm ordering the Haynes manual today after I figure out which one it is. I guess the only way to learn is to jump in.
I took few pics this morning. Here ya go....


Mutt
Gorgeous bike. But then again I would say that :)
 

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Sounds pretty involved for a novice wrench turner. I think if I'm doing this I'll flush the coolant also while everything is off. It all sounds do able to me except the carbs. That sounds a little scary. I'm ordering the Haynes manual today after I figure out which one it is. I guess the only way to learn is to jump in.
Mutt
Keep in mind that some people who just jump in drown.

I'd say that that much work on a bike that isn't running is not something for a novice mechanic to be doing. Replace the battery? Drain the carbs to get the old gas out of the bowls? Sure. But the rest of it? Meh...I dunno...that's a pretty squirrelly mess down there...

Just my two cents on the topic.

Before I order this manual I wanted to make sure it was the correct one. It says for triples 91-04 and has a pic of a TBS on the cover doesn't mention one on specifically.
http://www.haynes.com/products/productID/431
That's it. If you want to save some money on it, I'll sell you mine for $30 including shipping. I've got both that and the Triumph shop manual and have never found a reason to use the Haynes.
 

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Hi,

I bought a Daytona 900 which had similar symptoms. Mine ran but would leak fuel from the air box over night.

To fix mine I needed to refurbish the petcock, replace the float valve needles and reset the float heights. My 900 was very sensitive to the float hieght it seems to effect the mixture a lot especially on the lower revs.

I also changed the oil as it probably had some petrol in it.

It took ages to get the float height right as at first I didn't realise it was the problem as I thought I had already set it correctly. However now it runs like a dream and knowing I sorted it is a good feeling every time I ride it.

Best of luck,
Andy
 

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Blimey mate that is a good looking bike. l too have a Sport , an 03, in all Orange which l love but yours just pips mine, l am soo jealous. They are really satisfiying to ride fast, The extra braking is a big plus as l found out in Brittany France, a bike riders paradise, hundreds of miles of really bendy empty roads. As for your problems , once the carbs are sorted out they give litte problems and mine is not pampered at all. Just make sure that battery is always fully charged with an optimiser or similar. l have just one moan , yes that bloomig oil sight glass, a dip stick gives you a reading the glass, just a guess,thank God it uses little oil (so far ) but do change it every year no matter , what so you know its got the right amount of oil in at least once a year !!!.
 

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I do think Peter is right about the carburetors requiring some level of expertise. The problem is there are a lot of shops out there where you'll end up paying a lot of dough to have someone less than qualified screw them up.
When I got mine, the old owner had just paid to have the "carbs cleaned" and it took me 4 trips through them to get them right.

If I was going to have someone else do it, I'd have to know that they've been into these triples for some time.

If you decide to go it alone, take your time and don't assume anything...Ken
 

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I do think Peter is right about the carburetors requiring some level of expertise. The problem is there are a lot of shops out there where you'll end up paying a lot of dough to have someone less than qualified screw them up.
Good point, Ken, and one I'm appreciating even more after my $430 jaunt to the Triumph $tealer (in my case Ed's Service, Hyde Park, NY) to pick up my 2009 Street Triple R yesterday.

If you want it done right, do it yourself. That or take it to a guy you *know* is both competent and honest, and they're very hard to come by.
 

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Looks great!! Once dialed in, you have yourself a beauty.

I'd love to find an 03-04. I passed on a 98 cause I need the lower pipes so I can mount some luggage that's 16" wide and 13" tall.


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