What are your kickstarting rituals?

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codemonkey001
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What are your kickstarting rituals?

Post by codemonkey001 » Fri Nov 01, 2019 9:11 am

My first bike was a Royal Enfield. Salesman was so proud to show me how it had a kickstarter. He hopped on and must have cranked that thing 15-20 times, no joy. I figured "well hell, I'm paying for an electric starter, I'm gonna use an electric starter." Out of curiosity, tried once or twice. Figured out on my own not to hold in the clutch o.O .But nothing.

Fast forward a year, I now own an RE and a Ural. Never used the kickstart on either. Go to start the RE after a couple of days of rain - a click then nothing. Lights go out. Try to kickstart it, nothing. Go inside, watch a youtube video. Dude in India kicks it twice with the clutch in and key off, then 5 good kicks with the key off, turns the key and it's off to the races on the first kick. Monkey see, monkey do. I'm soon off to work pleased in my ability to kickstart the RE.

Another month forward, it's getting time to put two wheels on the tender and get the Ural up and running. Due to serious neglect, it was due for an oil change, front tire change, front brake job, the works. Since March, the Ural's only been used to run an air compressor to fill the tires on the RE. Battery's in the state you'd expect. Turn the key, hit the starter...clack. Lights go out.

So I let it rest a bit, try the same ritual on the Ural as on the RE - first kick after I turn the key. I'm feeling like Mr Manly here. Battery's fine now, but I've become fixated on the idea of only kickstarting from now on.

Only problem is, what works on a fuel injected bike and a carbureted bike at 75° doesn't necessarily work on a carbureted bike at 23°. So I've been trying to figure out what series of incantations is necessary and in what order to get the bike going in cold weather. Thus far my ritual consists of 5 kicks with no choke and key off, one kick with choke and key off, then turn the key on and by the second kick it's roaring to life.

Oh wizened wizards so wise in the ways of Urals, I ask you: what is your kickstarting ritual in cold weather?
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2015 Royal Enfield Classic 500 -Rocinante

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Re: What are your kickstarting rituals?

Post by eastbloc » Fri Nov 01, 2019 9:29 am

My first Urals had no electric starters and I was fine with that.

With the enrichers on and fuel in the bowls (petcock on prime if you have any doubts), a Mikuni or CVK-equipped Ural in a good state of tune will usually start by the third kick no matter what the weather, as long as there is enough juice left in the battery to power the ignition electronics.

No magic rituals necessary!
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codemonkey001
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Re: What are your kickstarting rituals?

Post by codemonkey001 » Fri Nov 01, 2019 9:43 am

eastbloc wrote:
Fri Nov 01, 2019 9:29 am
My first Urals had no electric starters and I was fine with that.

With the enrichers on and fuel in the bowls (petcock on prime if you have any doubts), a Mikuni or CVK-equipped Ural in a good state of tune will usually start by the third kick no matter what the weather, as long as there is enough juice left in the battery to power the ignition electronics.

No magic rituals necessary!
Makes sense, and my combo of kicking with/without enrichers but key off probably resulted in the same condition you describe (fuel in the bowls with enough juice on the battery for a spark) but so boring. Can't very well pretend you're an action movie superhero if there's a rational explanation for everything you do ;).
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Re: What are your kickstarting rituals?

Post by chaos2 » Fri Nov 01, 2019 10:17 am

My e-starter stopped working years ago and I retired it to a shelf in the garage. My ritual, cold, couple kicks choke & ignition off. Choke on and ignition on, a little throttle, and it usually fires right up. If not repeat, and if it's really stubborn leave the choke off to prevent flooding it. Same ritual if it's hot only no choke. Yesterday the damn thing wouldn't start for beans after sitting for a couple hours in near freezing weather. Finally fired up (it always does eventually) and I drove it home and drained out the 20-50 Castrol and in with the 5-40 Rotella syn. I've found with my carbie synthetic makes the difference between go and no go in freezing weather.
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Re: What are your kickstarting rituals?

Post by bratmanxj » Fri Nov 01, 2019 10:48 am

Bike was in the shop all last winter, so the worst it saw with me kicking it was about 15 deg one morning when a buddy of mine wanted to try off-roading his KLR he just bought. I push the bike out of the garage, pull enricheners on both carbs, turn the bike on and she starts on one fairly mild kick from stone cold. Let it idle for 10-15 seconds on the enricheners then push them off and letter her idle while I put on my gear.

I barely use the electric start on the Ural even though it works perfectly fine. Why not show off kicking it over if you got it, I've got a 2nd bike will all the creature comforts to use the electric starter.
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Re: What are your kickstarting rituals?

Post by brianural » Fri Nov 01, 2019 11:34 am

Dnepr MT-11: 2 kicks to prime with enricheners on, turn key on and usually 1 kick start.. MB-750 - tickle the carbs, key on, manual retard of ignition, 1-3 kicks..
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Re: What are your kickstarting rituals?

Post by stagewex » Fri Nov 01, 2019 11:54 am

I have a few bikes with kick & electric and a couple that are kick only. So for my 2007 Ural Patrol if sitting for awhile or cold start the ritual is:

Petcock on "PRI" (I still run the OEM vacuum type, never a problem).

Both choke(s) out.

One or two slow turns of the engine with the kickstarter with the key/ignition off (of course).
I do this whether intending on using magic button or kicking it over. Ya'll know why of course!

Key "ON", usually one or two kicks and she fires up.

Chokes back in/off almost immediately. Maybe a turn or two of the throttle, petcock back to "ON".

In warm or hot weather or if the engine is warm no need for choke(s).

It's been in the 40's, 50's, 60's lately so the above applies. In the 20's and colder I will get lazy and use the electric start after turning the engine with the key off. But I like kick-starting because it tells me that the bike is happy without the convenience of the Button.
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2008 Vespa 150S (Elec & Kick Start)
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2006 Honda "Big Ruckus" PS250
2006 Yamaha TW200 (Elec & Kick Start)
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Re: What are your kickstarting rituals?

Post by RC20 » Fri Nov 01, 2019 5:10 pm

None, deemed bad for my back. I have a Zero Start boosters pack and the permanent jumper leads hooked up.
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Re: What are your kickstarting rituals?

Post by Happytrails » Fri Nov 01, 2019 8:55 pm

Haven't tried kickstarting my Ural yet :)
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Re: What are your kickstarting rituals?

Post by Niteblues » Fri Nov 01, 2019 10:25 pm

wow! I feel like the old man on the block.

my electric starter [usually] doesn't work. it's something to do with wiring in the big red switch; i just stopped bothering to fix it.
with both enrichers pulled, i bring it around to tdc gently with the kicker with the key off. turn on the key and the big red switch and give a healthy kick with my russian boot while standing on the footpeg with my other foot. usually one or two kicks and it rumbles to life. can't give it much gas, try to feather it into life, but it usually dies.
repeat.
second time is usually the charm.
nurse it for a minute or so, then push in the enrichers. let it warm up for a few minutes and it's good to go.

once warmed up, i still kick it to life (see aforementioned starter wiring issue) but without enrichers. fires right up.

if I rode it in the past few days, it is much easier to get it to start, run, idle and stay running with usually just one kick.

i find it amusing to see younger folks ask me what that kicker is and why i have to start my bike that way! :lol:
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Re: What are your kickstarting rituals?

Post by Desantnik-VDV » Sat Nov 02, 2019 1:54 am

Part of the fun is the kickstarting the bike. Kickstarter is the battery life extender and electric starter life prolonger. I like using it every time.
Last edited by Desantnik-VDV on Tue Dec 03, 2019 12:55 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: What are your kickstarting rituals?

Post by Tin Man » Sat Nov 02, 2019 6:02 am

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Re: What are your kickstarting rituals?

Post by GHGoodwin » Sat Nov 02, 2019 7:22 am

I can do it but artificial knees don't like it. Rescue battery pack and starter for me.
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Re: What are your kickstarting rituals?

Post by cheeseheadmike » Sat Nov 02, 2019 8:32 am

Depends on the temp and how long I’ve had to let it sit because I’m traveling for work. Summertime, turn on the key, bring it to compression, stand on the foot peg, crack the throttle and push. Starts most times on the first kick. Below sixty, same as above but pull out the enrichers. Below forty, kick it over slowly a couple times, turn on the key, pullout the enrichers, don’t crack the throttle, kick.

If it’s had to sit for a week or two, set the petcock on PRI first.

Last part of the ritual, if it doesn’t start by the third kick, push the starter button.
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Re: What are your kickstarting rituals?

Post by Mr Wazzock » Sat Nov 02, 2019 11:38 am

Kickstart doesn't work on UK (or any other drive-on-the-left country) EFI Ural. :( Lever hits sidecar brake linkage.

As per GHGoodwin carry a battery booster around, in case.
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