float valve adjustment. - Honda Shadow Forums : Shadow Motorcycle Forum

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Old 09-26-2008, 10:52 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default float valve adjustment.

So I have had a problem with getting gas in my oil, and some people mentioned on the forum that it could be my float valves miss adjusted. I took of the carb last night, which on a side note, had a small bee stuck in the vacuum vent of one of the carbs. I cant believe that thing got all the way up there from tube. Stupid bee....

Anyway, so I have a float gauge which I used to adjust the flaots when I first got the bike. My manuals all said when the tang is lightly seated was the point you measure from. Well last night I decided to hold the carb in the position that the carb sits on the bike and measure. Seems like the float vavles on both carbs moves way way before it is suppose too so I had way too much gas in the bowls.

Last night I tried to adjust them so that I had the correct measurement right at the point that the float valve seems to move. Is this the correct way to do it? Is there anyway to test that I got this right besides using the float gauge?

Thanks,
J
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Old 09-26-2008, 09:10 PM   #2 (permalink)
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There is a tiny spring inside of the needle valves themselves. I don't believe that should be compressed at all when setting the float height. Most of the time, the floats can gently sit on the valves without compressing the spring.
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Old 09-26-2008, 10:45 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default A good idea

There was a post a week or so ago, and it made perfect sense to me.
To check the level against the float bowl, take a clear plastic tube about 12 inches long. and attach it to the drain spout on the bottom of the float bowl. Once this is done, open the drain screw and lift the tube up higher than the float bowl, and where the level of gas in the tube stops, is the level in the float bowl.
You should be able to eyeball it and see if it's too high or too low.
I personally thought this was a great idea. Fast, efficient, and no tweaking 5 or 6 times which eliminates taking it off, and putting it on several times. It may not be 100% accurate, but it will be damn close.
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Old 09-27-2008, 12:42 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ttyR2
There is a tiny spring inside of the needle valves themselves. I don't believe that should be compressed at all when setting the float height. Most of the time, the floats can gently sit on the valves without compressing the spring.
Huh?

The float needle does not have a spring on or in them.

The needle is held to the float with a very thin square wire loop.
It goes in the bore and touches the seat when the float is up.
Fuel level is the only thing that causes the float and needle to raise up or lower...


With that being said, you're not even supposed to adjust the floats.
You check them... if they are out of spec, you replace them.


When you are checking them, you have the needle lightly seated (float in the up position).
The base of the float gauge rests on the carburetor base/gasket surface of the carburetor
and measure from the top most part of the float to the carburetor base/(gasket surface).
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Old 09-29-2008, 12:52 AM   #5 (permalink)
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hmm, well I mostly think I got myself into trouble when I first got the bike and was cleaning the carburator. I decided to check the floats with a float guage and they appeared to be wrong to me so I change them a bit, however I think at the time measured them wrong.

This weekend I took the carb off again for the millionth time and checked the floats. My book says 7mm so I adjusted it so when the float measures 7mm out from from the carb end/seal at 7mm the float will be closed, but just past that it will start dripping or open up. Whether this is correct or not I am really not sure. But what the hell I will give it a try and work from there. For the record this is fairly drasticly different from where it was before.

I havent been able to test it yet though, cause my battery ran out of juice. Had to wait all day for it to charge, hope to give it a go in the morning and see if it starts, if not... maybe I will order new floats....

thanks for help,
J
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Old 09-29-2008, 01:25 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I dont know about your particular carb's floats but I've been adjusting carbs in my classes at school for the past couple months and on MOST of them I have been able to adjust the float height to get it into spec, usually by slightly bending the metal tab that makes contact with the needle valve.
measure by the book, mostly tilt the carb to where the float makes the valve close then hold it there and measure, no force should be on the float at all, except the force of gravity. I dont know why that float height would cause gas to be found in your oil.... float height is mainly attributed to running just right, or too rich/lean....
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Old 09-30-2008, 11:00 AM   #7 (permalink)
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As a matter of fact, there is a spring inside the fload needle. I know because I was tweaking with mine (I mean carb ) last night. It terminates with a protruding brass rod, which is what the float is pressing on in order to cut off the flow of fuel. Wire loop is to pull the float needle up to open the flow back up.

Regarding not adjusting the floats... Honda service manual states (and I paraphrase) that you are supposed to gently bend the (don't recall the term they use for the metal doohickey that pulls and pushes on the float needle), but you are supposed to bend it up or down in order to adjust float level.

It may be different on other bikes - I was reading about VLX...




Quote:
Originally Posted by litnin
Huh?

The float needle does not have a spring on or in them.

The needle is held to the float with a very thin square wire loop.
It goes in the bore and touches the seat when the float is up.
Fuel level is the only thing that causes the float and needle to raise up or lower...


With that being said, you're not even supposed to adjust the floats.
You check them... if they are out of spec, you replace them.


When you are checking them, you have the needle lightly seated (float in the up position).
The base of the float gauge rests on the carburetor base/gasket surface of the carburetor
and measure from the top most part of the float to the carburetor base/(gasket surface).
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Old 09-30-2008, 11:49 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by litnin
Huh?

The float needle does not have a spring on or in them.
Boy, I'm thinking the float needle valve on my 97 VT1100C had a spring inside it, where the float arm rest on the end of the valve, that part would compress into the main part of the valve body. But! right now I can't prove it So I can't say for 100% sure that it does BUT I'm 80% SURE that the 1100's do because when I adjusted mine I had to do some research about compressing the plunger or NOT compressing it when adjusting the floats and what I found out at that time was to seat the float needle valve, BUT not compress the plunger! But its been over a year sense I worked on the carburetors on my bike!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Litnin
With that being said, you're not even supposed to adjust the floats.
You check them... if they are out of spec, you replace them.
But! the below picture is a screen shot from the Honda OEM service manual!


So, I read this that if the floats out of adjustment, then you adjust them Now I did notice that it says "If The Float Arm Lip Can Be Bent" Mine was bendable.
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Old 09-30-2008, 07:13 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Funny... my factory manual specifically states that you replace the float,
not adjust it.

You should not adjust it for the simple fact that distortion of the armature
will change the float dynamics.

Even in the factory service training school, they tell you to never adjust
a float... always replace it.



The above is from a VLX factory manual.

...and I just checked the needles in two sets of carbs that I have
on the shelf. One set is from a '96 ACE 1100 and the other is from a
'94 VLX and neither have sprung float needles.
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Old 10-01-2008, 12:28 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Okay, Litnin, now your making me mad LOL!
Well do we have a stand off or what
One thing we do know is that the Honda service manual's for the VLX and the VT1100C Spirit have different reference's about the floats!.

Okay, I have another example.
I have a Suzuki VX800 Service manual (I know its not a Honda) but on that model Suzuki states to adjust the floats by bending the tongue.



I found the below in the Honda service manual for the 2001 VT1100C2 Sabre.




Now, I'll just shoot myself in the foot.
I also have a Honda service manual for the Honda VTX 1300 and it states that the floats CAN NOT be adjusted! and if they are out of spec to replace the floats. But, they DO NOT have a tab, a lip, or a lever to bend! they are FIXED!
So, we know that some Honda models have adjustable floats and some are fixed non adjustable! So it don't seem to be a matter of NOT adjusting them or adjusting them but rather if they are adjustable!
MarKC
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