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Victor Special hard to start #724731
02/08/18 9:03 am
02/08/18 9:03 am
Joined: Dec 2015
Posts: 33
Brisbane, Qld, Australia
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Creaky Offline OP
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Brisbane, Qld, Australia
I bet this topic has been done to death but once more won't hurt. I have a 1969 Victor Special which is a mongrel to start. The timing is spot on and the jetting is correct except the pilot which is removable on my 930/11 carby is only a 20 instead of the recommended 25. I have ordered a 25. Not here yet. With the 20 I find the screw has to be only a bit over 1/4 out or the motor won't run. This indicates to me that, indeed the richer 25 should allow me to have the screw 1.5 turns out or thereabouts. My question is, would not a 20 pilot jet with the screw 1/4 turn out give the same result as a richer pilot with the screw in a leaner position. (eg 1.5 turns out). Will my bike start and idle better with the 25 and why? Another problem I had was that at 1/4 throttle coasting along it was very jerky but acceleration and WOT was perfect. I replaced the needle (standard 2 ring) and needle jet (106) with identical brand new ones and problem solved, smooth as..... Why? Who knows. The old needle and jet must have been worn but not that I could measure or see. Anyway starting is my main problem now. I have standard coil ignition. Brand new plug, coil, points and capacitor and I have a good spark. Would electronic ignition help? Any ideas before I break my leg?

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Re: Victor Special hard to start [Re: Creaky] #724734
02/08/18 9:13 am
02/08/18 9:13 am
Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 1,178
Sydney, Oz
S
Shane in Oz Offline
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Sydney, Oz
This is probably a silly question, but what is your starting technique?

Re: Victor Special hard to start [Re: Shane in Oz] #724736
02/08/18 10:52 am
02/08/18 10:52 am
Joined: Dec 2015
Posts: 33
Brisbane, Qld, Australia
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Creaky Offline OP
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Shane, I've tried all sorts. The usual as described by the previous owner is. Fuel on, tickle carb till it just overflows, key on, kick up to compression, pull valve lifter and push just over comp, release valve lifter, no throttle, bring kicker to very top and kick long and fast. Then swear. If it fails I do the same but no tickle this time. Then swear again. Sometimes I give it 1/4 throttle and it starts. I don't have a choke and have considered putting one on but have been told flooding with the tickler serves the same purpose. I've watched various Youtube clips about starting them. The previous owner had very little problem starting it using the method he showed me.

Re: Victor Special hard to start [Re: Creaky] #724742
02/08/18 1:24 pm
02/08/18 1:24 pm
Joined: Aug 2015
Posts: 1,268
Bolton Lancs UK
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Andy Higham Offline
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Bolton Lancs UK
If the pilot jet is too small, there will not be enough fuel to start the engine

Last edited by Andy Higham; 02/08/18 1:25 pm.

BSA B31 500cc "Stargazer"
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Suzuki GSX1100 EFE "Sorcerers Apprentice"
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Re: Victor Special hard to start [Re: Creaky] #724743
02/08/18 1:27 pm
02/08/18 1:27 pm
Joined: Sep 2014
Posts: 209
Ohio
A
Andrew Dunham Offline
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Ohio
Try pushing the kicker a little further down. Mine usually likes approaching half way down (past compression) or so.


1961 BSA Super Rocket
1968 BSA A50
1969 BSA 441 VS
1970 BSA Thunderbolt
Re: Victor Special hard to start [Re: Creaky] #724748
02/08/18 2:01 pm
02/08/18 2:01 pm
Joined: Dec 2010
Posts: 259
NYC & Upstate NY
A
AML Offline
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NYC & Upstate NY
Creaky,
if your carb is clean and the jetting is correct, an extended throttle stop screw can make a difference. It does for me and helps with both cold and hot starts.
The other thing is that early Victors came with the screw in pilot jet, but later models came with a pressed in pilot jet which is behind the air screw. If your carb is not original (though I think the "930/11" stamping makes it so), I'd look behind the air screw to see if there's a pilot jet pressed in, and if so make sure it's clear.
or the carb just needs a cleaning; boil it or use an ultrasonic cleaner.
Adam

Re: Victor Special hard to start [Re: Creaky] #724752
02/08/18 2:43 pm
02/08/18 2:43 pm
Joined: Feb 2007
Posts: 646
Ewing. NJ
E
edunham Online content
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Ewing. NJ
All these bikes are a little different. On my 441, after feeling compression, I pull the release in and slowly push the kickstarter all the way down. I then let it all the way up and give it a boot. If the engine is cold, I kick it a couple of times with the release in and the ignition off, before going through the starting ritual. The theory being that the engine sucks some fuel into the compression chamber that way. On my B50, which I thought would be similar and gave me no end of difficulty until I figured out the starting ritual, the trick is little or no tickling. If the engine is thoroughly cold, I give the tickler a quick little stab and stop before it floods. If it floods, it isn't starting. Another example is my T25. It starts right up for me without difficulty. My daughter has a hard time, even if I stand along side her coaching. Part of that is that I am confident it will start. She is not. My suggestion is that you put the right pilot jet in, experiment with the starting technique (particularly the amount of flooding) and kick with assurance it will start.

Ed from NJ

Re: Victor Special hard to start [Re: edunham] #724778
02/08/18 6:07 pm
02/08/18 6:07 pm
Joined: Oct 2008
Posts: 1,684
Canada
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LarryLebel Offline
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Canada
Electronic ignition made a huge difference on my B44R with both easier starting and better running. I highly recommend Wassel EI.

Last edited by LarryLebel; 02/08/18 6:09 pm.
Re: Victor Special hard to start [Re: Creaky] #724799
02/08/18 8:10 pm
02/08/18 8:10 pm
Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 1,178
Sydney, Oz
S
Shane in Oz Offline
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Sydney, Oz
Originally Posted by Creaky
Shane, I've tried all sorts. The usual as described by the previous owner is. Fuel on, tickle carb till it just overflows, key on, kick up to compression, pull valve lifter and push just over comp, release valve lifter, no throttle, bring kicker to very top and kick long and fast. Then swear. If it fails I do the same but no tickle this time. Then swear again. Sometimes I give it 1/4 throttle and it starts. I don't have a choke and have considered putting one on but have been told flooding with the tickler serves the same purpose. I've watched various Youtube clips about starting them. The previous owner had very little problem starting it using the method he showed me.

That should be pretty much it. It might be worth a try kicking it through a couple of times before turning the ignition on, as per Ed's suggestion.

It's fairly critical to not open the throttle, so it needs to be set up to idle when cold. It will then idle fast when it's warmed up, so AML's extended throttle stop screw comes into play as well for a slower idle when hot.
My B44 starts well cold, but can be cranky when it's hot. If it doesn't start in 3 or 4 kicks, I assume it's flooded and kick again with the throttle wide open, which often works.

Your symptoms do sound a bit like a partially blocked idle circuit, or possibly even crud in the bottom of the float bowl.

Most importantly, do you sacrifice a red cockerel or white?

Re: Victor Special hard to start [Re: Shane in Oz] #724809
02/08/18 9:43 pm
02/08/18 9:43 pm
Joined: Dec 2015
Posts: 33
Brisbane, Qld, Australia
C
Creaky Offline OP
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Brisbane, Qld, Australia
Thanks for all your replies. Andy, Yes I am getting a 25 pilot and hope that helps. Andrew, Yes, when I feel compression I pull the lifter lever and push the kicker so the piston is probably halfway down so the exhaust valve is open and it is so easy to kick that I should get enough speed for the momentum to turn the crankshaft past the next compression stroke. I think that is the theory. AML, I am definitely going to track down one of those extended screws. Beats burning my hand on the exhaust using a screwdriver. Twice now. There is no pressed in jet I am sure as I can poke a wire .030 inch diameter through after removing the air mixture screw. At first this was a bit blocked and I thought that may have been the trouble. But alas, wrong again. Edunham, I've tried kicking it over with ignition off first also but you've hit the nail on the head. It's all in the mind. You have to be confident it's going to start and it will. Maybe. Like when you Karate chop a house brick, which I do all the time. Larry, I'll follow up on that Wassel E1. Hope it's not too exxy. Shane, I always start with closed throttle and my hand off the twistgrip to make sure. Sometimes it works, sometimes it don't. I see you're in Oz. If you're in Brisbane let me know and I'll give you a try at starting the b............

Re: Victor Special hard to start [Re: Creaky] #724817
02/08/18 10:31 pm
02/08/18 10:31 pm
Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 1,178
Sydney, Oz
S
Shane in Oz Offline
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Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 1,178
Sydney, Oz
Originally Posted by Creaky
I see you're in Oz. If you're in Brisbane let me know and I'll give you a try at starting the b............
I'm in Sydney, or I'd have offered to give you a hand, or foot as the case may be.

Re: Victor Special hard to start [Re: Creaky] #724821
02/08/18 11:15 pm
02/08/18 11:15 pm
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 3,862
Sydney Australia
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BSA_WM20 Online content
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Joined: May 2004
Posts: 3,862
Sydney Australia
Just a few things.
If the previous owner started it no problems, why are you changine things ?
Apart from the carb, what else have you done to it ?

To me it sounds more like your technique rather than the bike.
If you are starting on the center stand make sure you do not twist the throttle while decending .
I found unit singles much easier to start standing next to them kicking left footed .
This is because in that position I can easily kick fully through to the stop , which is slightly forward of vertical and most important my torso does not move so I do not twist the throttle.

The other thing that can make them a bugger to start is wear in the cam bush which bounces the points cam when the inlet valve closes creating a wrong timed spark that can not ignite the uncompressed charge and reducing the spark which happens at the right time.
pull the valve adjustment cap and spark plug then drop a rod down the plug hole.
With your 3rd & 4th hands rotate the engine and verify that the plug is firing on compression, that the valves are fully closed and that it is only firing once every 2nd rotation.


Bike Beesa
Trevor
Re: Victor Special hard to start [Re: Creaky] #724822
02/08/18 11:18 pm
02/08/18 11:18 pm
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 3,862
Sydney Australia
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BSA_WM20 Online content
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Sydney Australia
There is a BSA OC in Qld.
Ther are nice people and will happily give you some hands on help if asked.
Most are between Brissy & the border.
Shane & I are down south.

OTOH if you care to po over to the B50 forum ( B50.org ) there are a few unt single owners in your neck of the woods.


Bike Beesa
Trevor
Re: Victor Special hard to start [Re: Creaky] #724829
02/09/18 1:01 am
02/09/18 1:01 am
Joined: Sep 2007
Posts: 1,605
Nor Cal
Roadwarrior Offline

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Nor Cal
Are you certain the timing is spot on? Flood the motor. Engine to compression stroke, then hit the compression release. Kick all the way through. It should start unless your timing is off.

Last edited by Roadwarrior; 02/09/18 1:01 am.



Who are the brain police?



Re: Victor Special hard to start [Re: Shane in Oz] #724834
02/09/18 2:31 am
02/09/18 2:31 am
Joined: Dec 2013
Posts: 4,436
ohio, usa
kevin roberts Offline

DOPE
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DOPE

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ohio, usa
Originally Posted by Shane in Oz

Most importantly, do you sacrifice a red cockerel or white?


my preference is for black.


"Are bikes so nice as all that?" asked the mole, shyly...

"Nice? They're the only thing," said the Water Rat Solemnly, as he leaned forward on the handlebars. "Believe me, my young friend, there is nothing -- absolutely nothing -- half so much worth doing as simply messing about with bikes."
Re: Victor Special hard to start [Re: BSA_WM20] #724849
02/09/18 5:45 am
02/09/18 5:45 am
Joined: Dec 2015
Posts: 33
Brisbane, Qld, Australia
C
Creaky Offline OP
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Brisbane, Qld, Australia
WM20, I don't have a centrestand. The bloke who restored it said they were not available for the Victor but I was hoping he was wrong. If I can find one that is designed for this bike I will get one for sure, not only for starting but it seems unstable on its side stand and has nearly dropped off twice. Any details about a centrestand for this model would be appreciated. I will now wait for my 25 pilot and let you all know how it goes. Thanks to you all.

Re: Victor Special hard to start [Re: Creaky] #724854
02/09/18 6:46 am
02/09/18 6:46 am
Joined: Dec 2004
Posts: 9,554
Scotland
kommando Online content
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Scotland
Victor specials do not have the center stand lugs on the frame, Victor Roadsters and the Shooting Star do.

Re: Victor Special hard to start [Re: kommando] #724863
02/09/18 10:18 am
02/09/18 10:18 am
Joined: Dec 2015
Posts: 33
Brisbane, Qld, Australia
C
Creaky Offline OP
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Joined: Dec 2015
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Brisbane, Qld, Australia
Kommando, Thanks, looks like no centrestand for me then. And Larry, Where can I get a Wassel E1. I've been reading how good they are but can't find where to get them. Can you post a link please.

Re: Victor Special hard to start [Re: Creaky] #724873
02/09/18 12:31 pm
02/09/18 12:31 pm
Joined: Aug 2001
Posts: 7,604
scotland
triton thrasher Offline
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scotland
Originally Posted by Creaky
Kommando, Thanks, looks like no centrestand for me then. And Larry, Where can I get a Wassel E1. I've been reading how good they are but can't find where to get them. Can you post a link please.



This crowd offer it: http://unionjack.com.au/spares/parts/index.php?page=Home Bottom of that page, if your view is same as mine.

Don't know whether they really have it, or if they're a dinkum firm.

Last edited by triton thrasher; 02/09/18 12:32 pm.

Amateur Loctite enthusiast.
Re: Victor Special hard to start [Re: Creaky] #724885
02/09/18 3:48 pm
02/09/18 3:48 pm
Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 1,502
melbourne florida
B
bodine031 Online content
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melbourne florida
I have a 69 B-44VS since 1981. It to was a pain to get lit up. Like a lot of Norton later twin owners I went modern. Mukuni round slide 30mm, Boyer EI & Typanium R/R. Ford ATF (old stuff) in the primary,Redline shock proof in the gear box, Valvoline VR 60wt. in the engine. Also has a MAP external oil filter on it. & a MG4L Gel Electrolite battery, handles the vibration way better than even an AGM batt.This bike is now big fun and a pleasure, Starts 1 or 2 kicks cold, warm, or hot. My 62 yr. young wife can even pop it off.

Re: Victor Special hard to start [Re: bodine031] #724915
02/09/18 7:16 pm
02/09/18 7:16 pm
Joined: Oct 2008
Posts: 1,684
Canada
L
LarryLebel Offline
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Canada
Creaky. I bought my Wassel EI from a west coast Canada local company called British Isle Motorcycle.
www.britmc.com

Re: Victor Special hard to start [Re: Creaky] #724922
02/09/18 7:33 pm
02/09/18 7:33 pm
Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 853
Farnham, Surrey, UK
gunner Online content
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Farnham, Surrey, UK
Totally agree with Bodine's comments above and I have made similar mods to my 68 Shooting Star to make it start easily and run reliably.

With most classic bikes what you have to consider is that many of the parts needed for reliable starting are likely well past their sell by date. However its not always obvious that a part is worn so my approach is to replace components with modern equivalents.

For example:-
- auto advance units rely on having correctly tensioned springs and parts that are not seized. Sometimes starting problems can be caused by the timing being way out because the AAU is worn. Easiest solution is to fit a Boyer/Pazon/Wassel electronic ignition which is fit and forget.
- over the years, AMAL carbs suffer from a variety of problems including warped mounting flanges, worn slides and blocked idle circuits. Best to replace with a new AMAL Concentric or modern equivalent e.g. Mikini, JRC
- might be worth checking your wiring and ensuring the battery is supplying at least 12.5v, the charging system is working and all connections to the coil etc. are OK. I would also fit new a HT lead and cap, spark plug and check the coil resistances.


1968 A65 Firebird
1967 B44 Shooting Star
1972 Norton Commando
Re: Victor Special hard to start [Re: Creaky] #724965
02/10/18 3:35 am
02/10/18 3:35 am
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Posts: 3,862
Sydney Australia
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BSA_WM20 Online content
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Before you start throwing money at the bike willy nilly you really should find out what is wrong with the bike or weather it is just your starting technique.

So either get some one to look over it or get a manual ( the Rupet Ratio book is very good ) and start checking things yourself.
It could be something easy to fix like the auto advance unit having slipped on the taper , there is no pin or key so a simple lick back can cause it to slip putting the timing out.
BJ's carry both AMAL & Wassel and they are right there in Brissie BJ's Bikes & Bits
They are reasonable people to do business with & have a workshop and will give you a full report on the condition of the bike , but due to the dubuious dealing with British bike owners no longer do repairs.
As suggested previously the BSA OC Qld have several members with unit singles and some of them have been riding them for decades so can & will help you get your technique & bike running properly.
That is why they formed, to help people get & keep BSA's on the roads.
In any case if you are thinking of Historic Registration you will have to be a member of an authorised club and that really menas the BSAOC or Historic MCC Qld

You might like to read through Bushmans Concentric page which is as good a description of how concentrics works as any.
Jeff Skillen is still around but only has a face book page or phone number & I never put phone numbers on a web page.Although his AMAL rebuilds are not much cheaper than a std new AMAL
Wassel is a brand I try to avoid there stuff varies greatly from one batch to the next and one has no idea where they are getting made.
One will be great and the next one will be junk.
We had a B40 sieze that the Goulburn national rally because the brand new Wassel alternator's stator potting mix, expanded and filled up the space between the stator & rotor , locking the engine solid.


Bike Beesa
Trevor
Re: Victor Special hard to start [Re: Creaky] #724972
02/10/18 4:43 am
02/10/18 4:43 am
Joined: Dec 2013
Posts: 4,436
ohio, usa
kevin roberts Offline

DOPE
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DOPE

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Posts: 4,436
ohio, usa
i'm taking the Boyer off mine and going back to points.

AAU from eBay and a 6CA plate and points from peter quick in the mail as i write.


"Are bikes so nice as all that?" asked the mole, shyly...

"Nice? They're the only thing," said the Water Rat Solemnly, as he leaned forward on the handlebars. "Believe me, my young friend, there is nothing -- absolutely nothing -- half so much worth doing as simply messing about with bikes."
Re: Victor Special hard to start [Re: Creaky] #724984
02/10/18 9:09 am
02/10/18 9:09 am
Joined: Aug 2001
Posts: 7,604
scotland
triton thrasher Offline
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scotland
Originally Posted by WM20
Wassel is a brand I try to avoid there stuff varies greatly from one batch to the next and one has no idea where they are getting made.
One will be great and the next one will be junk.


The Vape ignition, originating from the Czech Republic and branded “Wassell” really appears to be well made and fuss-free in service. Watch this space, as I put some more miles on one this year.

You are right though, to say that a problem starting a bike should be addressed by fixing the problem, not by fitting fancy conversions.


Amateur Loctite enthusiast.
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