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Re: TBS won't fire - any diagnostic ideas?

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  • tbs_boy
    Thanks, Peter. Assuming no luck tonight with spark in any cylinder, that s the road I ll go down. I was hoping that some switch gave up (I ll put the tester
    Message 1 of 13 , Dec 16, 2002
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      Thanks, Peter. Assuming no luck tonight with spark in any cylinder,
      that's the road I'll go down. I was hoping that some switch gave up
      (I'll put the tester to the sidestand switch tonight JIC) that I'd
      overlooked. Nearest dealer is over 40 miles, so a bit of a PITA, but
      better to give up in my garage before a snowstorm than while at work
      at night.

      Should I ask Santa for another TBS, you know, just in case this
      happens again? "Gee, Dear, it sure is nice to have 2 of the same
      bike/car/tractor etc. at times like this so that you can swap parts
      to do diagnostic work..."

      --- In triumphthunderbirdsportriders@yahoogroups.com, petermholmes
      <no_reply@y...> wrote:
      > > I went out to my TBS yesterday afternoon for a quick ride before
      > > dark, and while it did turn over vigorously, it wouldn't fire at
      > all.
      > <snip>
      > > I ran out of time to pull the plugs and check for spark, but the
      > > smell of fuel when cranking suggests that I have no spark from
      any
      > of
      > > the coils. I will pull the plugs tonight to confirm.
      >
      > From what I've read in the various Triumph groups over the years
      I'd
      > say that the most likely possibilities are:
      >
      > 1) Ignition pickup
      > 2) Coil(s)
      > 3) Igniter unit
      >
      > From the sounds of your problem (all threee cylinders dead) I'd
      guess
      > either ignition pickup or igniter.
    • Maurice
      Hmm...didnt think of the side stand switch (new to T birds)...but, usually, the simpler, cruder things fail first (causing you to waste much time checking the
      Message 2 of 13 , Dec 16, 2002
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        Hmm...didnt think of the side stand switch (new to
        T'birds)...but, usually, the simpler, cruder things
        fail first (causing you to waste much time checking
        the more complex!)
        --- tbs_boy <no_reply@yahoogroups.com> wrote:
        > Thanks, Peter. Assuming no luck tonight with spark
        > in any cylinder,
        > that's the road I'll go down. I was hoping that
        > some switch gave up
        > (I'll put the tester to the sidestand switch tonight
        > JIC) that I'd
        > overlooked. Nearest dealer is over 40 miles, so a
        > bit of a PITA, but
        > better to give up in my garage before a snowstorm
        > than while at work
        > at night.
        >
        > Should I ask Santa for another TBS, you know, just
        > in case this
        > happens again? "Gee, Dear, it sure is nice to have
        > 2 of the same
        > bike/car/tractor etc. at times like this so that you
        > can swap parts
        > to do diagnostic work..."
        >
        > --- In
        > triumphthunderbirdsportriders@yahoogroups.com,
        > petermholmes
        > <no_reply@y...> wrote:
        > > > I went out to my TBS yesterday afternoon for a
        > quick ride before
        > > > dark, and while it did turn over vigorously, it
        > wouldn't fire at
        > > all.
        > > <snip>
        > > > I ran out of time to pull the plugs and check
        > for spark, but the
        > > > smell of fuel when cranking suggests that I have
        > no spark from
        > any
        > > of
        > > > the coils. I will pull the plugs tonight to
        > confirm.
        > >
        > > From what I've read in the various Triumph groups
        > over the years
        > I'd
        > > say that the most likely possibilities are:
        > >
        > > 1) Ignition pickup
        > > 2) Coil(s)
        > > 3) Igniter unit
        > >
        > > From the sounds of your problem (all threee
        > cylinders dead) I'd
        > guess
        > > either ignition pickup or igniter.
        >
        >


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      • tbs_boy
        Always looking for a cheap way out myself, so I m always checking the small stuff ;-). A new igniter box does not sound cheap (hence looking there last), but
        Message 3 of 13 , Dec 16, 2002
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          Always looking for a cheap way out myself, so I'm always checking the
          small stuff ;-). A new igniter box does not sound cheap (hence
          looking there last), but I fear that Peter may be onto something.

          --- In triumphthunderbirdsportriders@yahoogroups.com, Maurice
          <sazerac99us@y...> wrote:
          > Hmm...didnt think of the side stand switch (new to
          > T'birds)...but, usually, the simpler, cruder things
          > fail first (causing you to waste much time checking
          > the more complex!)
          > <snip>
        • Maurice
          Keep us posted!! I d love to learn from your misfortune :) ... __________________________________________________ Do you Yahoo!? Yahoo! Mail Plus - Powerful.
          Message 4 of 13 , Dec 16, 2002
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            Keep us posted!! I'd love to learn from your
            misfortune :)
            --- tbs_boy <no_reply@yahoogroups.com> wrote:
            > Always looking for a cheap way out myself, so I'm
            > always checking the
            > small stuff ;-). A new igniter box does not sound
            > cheap (hence
            > looking there last), but I fear that Peter may be
            > onto something.
            >
            > --- In
            > triumphthunderbirdsportriders@yahoogroups.com,
            > Maurice
            > <sazerac99us@y...> wrote:
            > > Hmm...didnt think of the side stand switch (new to
            > > T'birds)...but, usually, the simpler, cruder
            > things
            > > fail first (causing you to waste much time
            > checking
            > > the more complex!)
            > > <snip>
            >
            >


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          • petermholmes
            ... Funny you should mention that... Peter 00 TBS 99 TBS 67 Metralla
            Message 5 of 13 , Dec 16, 2002
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              > Should I ask Santa for another TBS, you know, just in case this
              > happens again? "Gee, Dear, it sure is nice to have 2 of the same
              > bike/car/tractor etc. at times like this so that you can swap parts
              > to do diagnostic work..."

              Funny you should mention that...

              Peter
              '00 TBS
              '99 TBS
              '67 Metralla

              :O)
            • pickwickian51@aol.com
              Hey Tom, On mine the ignition pickup went out. In my case it would stop sending a signal when it got hot, about the time the fan came on. Once it cooled down
              Message 6 of 13 , Dec 17, 2002
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                Hey Tom,

                On mine the ignition pickup went out. In my case it would stop sending a
                signal when it got hot, about the time the fan came on. Once it cooled down
                it would work again. That's not like your situation but I will guess that the
                unit could fail completely.

                I feel you can rule out the ignition switch, which also failed a little over
                a week ago. In that case I drove to work OK. After work, trying to head home
                it was like the battery was dead. The key may be that the only lights working
                will be the emergency flashers and turn signals will function.

                The flooding thing is still something to think about. When I picked up my
                bike on Saturday it took several cranks to get it going. The mechanic rushed
                over in a panic saying "dude, it started up just fine yesterday!" I let him
                know that the petcock had been left in the on position which always makes it
                difficult to fire up. I had been using my wife's Sportster, which needs full
                *choke* and a twist of the throttle to fire on the first thumb. I made the
                mistake of twisting the throttle and it took even longer to get the TBS fired.

                Aloha and Happy Trails,

                Gary Gavin
                98 Thunderbird Sport
                02 Mini Cooper


                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              • tbs_boy
                Thanks for the advice, Gary. Unfortunately, after scraping the 4 inches of ice and snow off my car on Monday night, getting the TBS ready to run was not a top
                Message 7 of 13 , Dec 18, 2002
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                  Thanks for the advice, Gary. Unfortunately, after scraping the 4
                  inches of ice and snow off my car on Monday night, getting the TBS
                  ready to run was not a top priority, so I haven't done a laying on of
                  hands yet to check spark. I'm betting it's dead, but if not it
                  almost has to be flooding. It's supposedly warming up into the 50's
                  this weekend, so it will be a top priority tonight or tomorrow ;-)

                  Aloha from the icy Northeast,
                  Tom P.

                  --- In triumphthunderbirdsportriders@yahoogroups.com,
                  pickwickian51@a... wrote:
                  > Hey Tom,
                  >
                  > On mine the ignition pickup went out. In my case it would stop
                  sending a
                  > signal when it got hot, about the time the fan came on. Once it
                  cooled down
                  > it would work again. That's not like your situation but I will
                  guess that the
                  > unit could fail completely.
                  >
                  > I feel you can rule out the ignition switch, which also failed a
                  little over
                  > a week ago. In that case I drove to work OK. After work, trying to
                  head home
                  > it was like the battery was dead. The key may be that the only
                  lights working
                  > will be the emergency flashers and turn signals will function.
                  >
                  > The flooding thing is still something to think about. When I picked
                  up my
                  > bike on Saturday it took several cranks to get it going. The
                  mechanic rushed
                  > over in a panic saying "dude, it started up just fine yesterday!" I
                  let him
                  > know that the petcock had been left in the on position which always
                  makes it
                  > difficult to fire up. I had been using my wife's Sportster, which
                  needs full
                  > *choke* and a twist of the throttle to fire on the first thumb. I
                  made the
                  > mistake of twisting the throttle and it took even longer to get the
                  TBS fired.
                  >
                  > Aloha and Happy Trails,
                  >
                  > Gary Gavin
                  > 98 Thunderbird Sport
                  > 02 Mini Cooper
                  >
                  >
                  > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                • tbs_boy
                  ... Well, mystery almost solved on the allegedly misfiring TBS. Pulled the #3 plug to check for spark, and no problem (not as strong as I d like, but the
                  Message 8 of 13 , Dec 22, 2002
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                    > so I haven't done a laying on of hands yet to check spark. I'm
                    > betting it's dead, but if not it almost has to be flooding. It's
                    > supposedly warming up into the 50's this weekend, so it will be a
                    > top priority tonight or tomorrow ;-)

                    > Aloha from the icy Northeast,
                    > Tom P.


                    Well, mystery almost solved on the allegedly misfiring TBS. Pulled
                    the #3 plug to check for spark, and no problem (not as strong as I'd
                    like, but the battery wasn't fully charged when I checked it). Put
                    the plug back, removed the #1 filter (K&N pods), and sprayed a little
                    carb cleaner in the intake while cranking. Backfire from the carb,
                    but still won't start. Rather than flooding, seemed like too lean,
                    but by now I'm convinced the spark is not the issue.

                    Covered the intake with my hand (poor man choke), engine started and
                    instantly ran up to redline. Shut it down, and checked the throttle
                    to make sure the plates were fully closed. Sure enough, throttle was
                    being held open by a kink in the throttle cable where it connnects to
                    the carbs. How it got there is the "almost solved" part of the
                    mystery, but I fixed the kink and I was off to the races. Running
                    perfectly.

                    Temps here were in the low '50s today and the roads were dry, so I
                    was mighty pleased to have the TBS out and running earlier today.
                    Hope that the rest of you stuck in the frozen Northern US were
                    equally blessed by the weather gods.

                    Regards,
                    Tom P.
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