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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey Guys (and gals),

I just picked up a very clean, very low mileage 500 (4,950mi) and I’m cleaning it up. As it sits, it starts with the choke, but won’t rev or idle.
Any ideas?

Tire Wheel Fuel tank Land vehicle Vehicle


Tire Wheel Fuel tank Vehicle Automotive fuel system
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
That’s going to be my first effort. Pull the tank, pull the carbs and clean them out. It has spark, and with the choke, fires right up.
This motor seems to have a lot of extra air & crankcase hoses. I’ll keep you posted on my efforts. It’s so clean, even has the factory tires on it!
 

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1983 Honda vt750 Shadow
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Welcome to the forum. That is a beauty. Keep those old classics running !
The carb pilot jets are very easy to clog up if it sits for some time.
They are the low speed circuit idle up to about 1/4 throttle, so they need to pass fuel for an idle and rev up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Awesome! I’ll check that when I open the carbs up. Not sure what I’m going to with it. It’s such a time machine.
 

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Welcome to the forum. With such low milage it must have sat a while. Definitely will need carb cleaning. I restored an 85 vt500c back to running as well. If it has stock tires you will want to change them too. And probably bleed the brakes. There are many good posts here for all this. Yours looks nice. I hope you enjoy it. Edit. I should add that yours is a very nice looking bike. Looks like collector condition compared to mine. Not really my business but I hope you keep it stock.
 

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That’s going to be my first effort. Pull the tank, pull the carbs and clean them out. It has spark, and with the choke, fires right up.
This motor seems to have a lot of extra air & crankcase hoses. I’ll keep you posted on my efforts. It’s so clean, even has the factory tires on it!
Nice bike, I have a VT500FT Ascot.

Take some pics of those hoses before removal.
Those pics will help when you are putting it back together.

Make sure the float bowl vent/overflow hoses are clear, they are a favorite place for bugs to nest...
I use a single brass strand of an electrical wire to push thru jets and carb passages to verify they are clear.
Brass is softer than steel and have less chance to scratch the jets and passages.
jmo,
.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Nice bike, I have a VT500FT Ascot.

Take some pics of those hoses before removal.
Those pics will help when you are putting it back together.

Make sure the float bowl vent/overflow hoses are clear, they are a favorite place for bugs to nest...
I use a single brass strand of an electrical wire to push thru jets and carb passages to verify they are clear.
Brass is softer than steel and have less chance to scratch the jets and passages.
jmo,
.
Thanks for the tips! You guys are the best!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Welcome to the forum. With such low milage it must have sat a while. Definitely will need carb cleaning. I restored an 85 vt500c back to running as well. If it has stock tires you will want to change them too. And probably bleed the brakes. There are many good posts here for all this. Yours looks nice. I hope you enjoy it. Edit. I should add that yours is a very nice looking bike. Looks like collector condition compared to mine. Not really my business but I hope you keep it stock.
Well, my initial thought was to fix it up, get it running & looking its best, work through the DMV fees and sell it. Shadow 500's don't have a great resale value, even one as clean as this. I may keep it and rent it out, like I do with a 2008 Suzuki DL650. We'll see how it comes out!

I will DEFINITELY change those tires! Scary they are 35years old! Really starting to show cracks. Front brake is almost locked up, so a flush and bleed is on the list. I'll likely pop out the pistons in the caliper, lube them up and bleed it out. The rear (drum) is working fine. I'll swap the final drive lube, too.

The only thing I want to do to take the bike away from stock is change the bars. The Baby-Apes are terrible! They look scary unsafe, too. I'll replace with a cruiser bar, just one without so much "hang"

I'll keep y'all posted!
 

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Why would you say they’re ‘unsafe’? Especially on such a light bike? Never ran into an issue while riding the 750 with them, and it’s pretty comfortable with the ‘lounge chair’ semi-reclined position. 😉 Just not the style anymore.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Well, I‘ve ridden a few cruisers in my day and I don’t like the “disconnected” feel from bars like that. I’m a huge fan of flatter bars that give me a good, “connected” feel to the bike. Honestly, my demo ride on a Harley Dyna Glide was scary - I just don’t like that style of bike. I know others do, and that’s fine, but for me, wildly bent bars feel unsafe- I just don’t have much leverage over the bike and road feel is vague.
Guess I’m more sporty vs cruisy!
As long as the rubber hits the road, it’s all good.
 

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Huh. Never really noticed the change in road feel. My old KZ400 LTD had ‘mini-apes’ bent to make the Shadow’s look like a straight bar. And one side was even bent! And the majority of riding I did was on dirt and gravel… If it gets to the point where you need the leverage, things have already gone South. 😉 I just deal with what I’m given. My only concern now is that being laid back is bad enough on the back. Having straighter bars that make you lean forward with your legs out might be even harder on it…
 

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Martin179b,

Once you have the tank removed can you take a top down pic of the heads? I'm trying to see how your rear coolant return pipe looks, compared to mine.
 

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Wow really nice little bike with super low miles. Probably carbs. I hope you keep it that way. I hate it when people take a super nice original bike and then crap them up with after market parts and really bad paint jobs.
 

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2005 Honda Shadow VT600CD
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Hey Guys (and gals),

I just picked up a very clean, very low mileage 500 (4,950mi) and I’m cleaning it up. As it sits, it starts with the choke, but won’t rev or idle.
Any ideas?

View attachment 298505

View attachment 298506
DO NOT pull off the carbs yet! I had the EXACT same problem on my 2005 VT600CD and this forum chanted “pull off the carbs!” When in fact it was simply fuel starvation from a stuck auto peacock valve. Pulled off the carb THREE times, injuring my hand doing so. 3 months later it still hurts. SO! Verify fuel supply at the carb(s) before you blame the carb(s)!!
 

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84 VT500C retro bobber
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A bike that clean spent a lot of time sitting over the last 35 years. I would definitely drain and replace all the fluids and clean those carbs. Fantastic looking bike though. Youll be surprised at how quick that thing is. Good find
 

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'83 VT750C
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DO NOT pull off the carbs yet! I had the EXACT same problem on my 2005 VT600CD and this forum chanted “pull off the carbs!” When in fact it was simply fuel starvation from a stuck auto peacock valve. Pulled off the carb THREE times, injuring my hand doing so. 3 months later it still hurts. SO! Verify fuel supply at the carb(s) before you blame the carb(s)!!
Awww… You hurted your widdle hand? Weinie… LOL! But seriously, your bike doesn’t love you if it doesn’t draw at least a little blood, and bash a knuckle or two…

The issue might be elsewhere, but pulling off the carbs to give them a once over is ALWAYS a good idea. If anything to eliminate them as a cause. Which they usually are. For instance, I had thoroughly cleaned a set of carbs a few times. Did the ultrasonic thing by boiling them in Pine-Sol, etc… The engine still didn’t run right. Father said to start looking elsewhere, but I grabbed the original (worse condition) carbs that I’d also cleaned (once) as an aside. Threw them in and the bike worked perfectly…
 
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