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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey everyone,

I've got only 1300 miles on my first bike - a 2008 Scrambler - so bear with my mechanical ineptitude...

After about 4 or 5 days of not riding, she wouldn't start for me yesterday morning. I could get it to turn over just fine, but the engine wasn't firing up. The dealer suggested I pull the spark plugs.

Both plugs were wet upon removal and they seemed to smell like gas. But after drying them and connecting them to the spark plug wire, I could see both were sparking just fine. I placed them back on the bike, started her up, and again, she wouldn't fire up.

I pulled the plugs again, and this time, the right one was completely dry while the left (kick-stand side) was as wet as before.

I decided to let it sit overnight, but nothing has changed. The left plug is still bathing in what I think is gas.

Any ideas on how this could have happened and, more importantly, how to fix it? I'd rather not tow it into the dealership if there's something relatively simple I can do to "unflood"(?) the cylinder.

Thanks, guys - any advice is appreciated.

Paul
 

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First thing I'd try is fully charging the battery. Put it on the Battery Tender overnight, or however long it takes until the light turns green. If you don't have a Battery Tender, buy one, you should have it anyway for the non-riding months.

The sense I get from reading other posts--this hasn't happened to me--is that the electronic ignition systems are voltage-sensitive.

While the battery charges, check all the connections you can find, especially the battery connections, igniter connections under the seat, and the coil connections. You'll have to remove the tank to get at the coil, but that's easy; prepare a place to set it down--blanket or clean cardboard--before you remove it.

If that doesn't help, it's time for the trip to the dealer. You could have a bad coil, bad igniter, bad or mis-adjusted pickup coil. Or something else.
 

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Is it a carb bike, or EFI? If carbs maybe stuck float? Did you do any mods to the bike lately (like rejet)? Do you still have air box? if so is the filter wet with gas?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the suggestions...

It's a carb bike. And the only engine mod I've done is removing the air injection about 150 miles ago. It ran perfectly until the other day when it didn't start, so I'm guessing that isn't the problem.

I'm not with the bike, but I'll check for a gas-soaked air filter this evening.

What's a "stuck float" and how would I check for this?
 

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This could have happened when you had it parked and you left the pet cock on. This is common, check your air box for gas and your oil. If you have gas in your oil, give it an oil change. If your filter is wet, sun dry , wipe your plugs dry again. Every time you park your bike turn your gas off. The reason I know is this happened to me about 10 years ago.
 

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you are not opening the throttle while starting it are you?these bikes will flood easy if you are.allso allways cut the fuel valve off when you cut the bike off.pull the plugs dry them out.If you have a air compressor blow air in spark plug holes to get all the gas out the bores .Leave the fuel valve off .try and start it with no choke first .If it wont start pull the choke and see if it fires.Allso check and make sure the air filter is clean and dry.If it fires up turn fuel valve on run it long enough to clear it out good.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
THanks for all the advice, guys.

mikeinva: I may have goosed the throttle some when trying to start it. I may have also left the choke on too long. And between short recesses in riding, I almost never turn off the fuel valve. Never had a problem before, so I'm not sure if it was excessive. I'll definitely be mindful in the future.

What I do know is this: After pulling, drying, re-engaging both plugs and then trying to start it again, the plugs are soaked in gas. Every time.

I've worked on my old '88 Porsche 911 some so I'm not an idiot with basic engine mechanics, but... (cue motorcycle inexperience...)

How do I get to the airbox on my scram to see if it too is soaked with gas? I pulled the panels off of the side but the box that's connected to both of the carbs is glued at the box, and I'm nervous to start tearing it off.

Maybe more importantly.. Does the fact that the plugs are perpetually soaked mean the cylinders are flooded with gas? How do I remove the gas that's soaking the plugs?

Any help is greatly appreciated.. it's gonna finally be 80 degrees here in Minneapolis tomorrow and I really would hate to waste the day.

Thanks, P
 

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I've never had this problem but then again I always turn off the petcock whether it be 5 minutes or overnight.........
 

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go to bike bandit web site they have a parts break down you can look at and see how the filter is in the box. If you dont have a air compressor to blow the air out of the bores.you can unhook the little wires that go into the coils and spin the motor with the starter .Dont spin it with plugs out with the little wires hooker up that can burn the coils up.
 

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THanks for all the advice, guys.

mikeinva: I may have goosed the throttle some when trying to start it. I may have also left the choke on too long. And between short recesses in riding, I almost never turn off the fuel valve. Never had a problem before, so I'm not sure if it was excessive. I'll definitely be mindful in the future.

What I do know is this: After pulling, drying, re-engaging both plugs and then trying to start it again, the plugs are soaked in gas. Every time.

I've worked on my old '88 Porsche 911 some so I'm not an idiot with basic engine mechanics, but... (cue motorcycle inexperience...)

How do I get to the airbox on my scram to see if it too is soaked with gas? I pulled the panels off of the side but the box that's connected to both of the carbs is glued at the box, and I'm nervous to start tearing it off.

Maybe more importantly.. Does the fact that the plugs are perpetually soaked mean the cylinders are flooded with gas? How do I remove the gas that's soaking the plugs?

Any help is greatly appreciated.. it's gonna finally be 80 degrees here in Minneapolis tomorrow and I really would hate to waste the day.

Thanks, P
I have a Bonneville, but the air filter on your scrambler should be on the same side. Take off the left side cover and you will see a plastic horn looking thing on the airbox just under the cover. That's the air intake. Three screws and a slight twist CCW removes the intake 'horn" and there's your air filter. Just slide it out and check it.

Sounds like you have gasoline constantly flowing through the carbs and into the head. The float bowls are on the underside of the carburators. It's the very bottom part, sorta looks like a bowl.

There is a fuel drain screw on the side of the carburator bowl with a little nipple underneath to drain from. If you get so inclined to open the bottom, make sure you use the drain plug to release any gas trapped in the bowl, or it will dump all over your hands. Still, better to place a rag under them anyway.

I have read that not turning off the fuel tap can lead to gumming up the carbs and also may cause them to leak over time. One of the first things I was told by the dealer, and the booklet that comes with the bike states it as well; always turn of the gas flow when the bike isn't running.

Sounds like you enjoy tinkering/working on your own. I recommend getting a Triumph shop manual. They cost a $100.00 but it's well worth it to read through and learn about how the bike works as well as instructions with drawing aids on how to work on the bike.

Some here recommend the Haynes manual. I don't know anything about it except I think it's cheaper than the Triumph one.
 
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