Honda Shadow Forums banner

1 - 9 of 9 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
921 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I recently posted couple of questions initially relating to a starting problem (which was resolved-starter switch). Then the dealership told me I had an issue at 44k miles w/low compression and suggested I was looking at an $1100 top end job. I have got a tap, tap, tap noise in the front cylinder. Intermittently, I have to crank it for an extended period of time and then it will start and run for 2-3 minutes on one cylinder. There's no smoke out the pipes-ever. I followed a lot of advice given previously including changing to a bit hotter plug (my morning start/drive has been in 12-15 degree temps. The plugs I pulled out didn't indicate any problems that I could tell. To make a long question short, l plan to get a leak down test done and if it indicates a top end teardown is necessary. Would a novice-intermediate level mechanic be absolutely foolish to attempt any of the work himself? How about pulling the engine and taking it in whole (saving the labor cost there)? I found a few used Shadow engines on e-bay out of Florida for $800 (the guy had pretty positive ratings). Would it be absolutely foolish to go with a used engine?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,689 Posts
Actually I would take the attitude to trust but verify - independent verification at a private shop or another dealer.

You may have something going on with a sticking valve but I would definitely do my own compression checks, especially compare warm and cold reading to see what is up and verify it's valve related.

Perhaps try some additive (lucas, etc.) to loosen the valves or alternatively, run some snythetic oil through it and see if it clean things up after some riding time.

I would do anything reasonable before submitting to nearly $1000 of repairs until I was sure I had exhausted every other possibility.

Worst case: I have bumped this request to the top and added enough controversey to get you some additional comments and ideas...... :wink:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
921 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Thanks cbjr

Ya know, I am trying to do all the reasonable stuff before I spend the money. Since I got it out of the shop w/the new starter switch I have run four tankfulls through w/some stuff, that was recommended on this forum by a guy in VA, called KG44B. It's supposed to de-carbon the top end real well. Also recommended were a couple of freeway drives of a couple hundred miles--did that. To tell you the truth the bike seems to run great; it's hard to believe the dealership's dire diagnosis. I spoke w/a harley mechanic tonight. He thought the intermittent starting problem mentioned above sounded like an intake leak. When I got home I tightened the carb intake tube (is that what you call them) clamps--we'll see if the problem reappears. I took my colder plugs that I just changed for hotter plugs to the mechanics at bus barn today(I work for a school district) to see how they read them. They said they read rich. Now, I bought this thing in desert Tucson (Elev 2300'). I now live in the mountains (5500'). A little richness would be expected and nothing to worry about at this altitude don't you think? Could the richness account for the heavy carbon build-up the dealer says he thinks I have? I may just try to forget the dealer's warning and ride the thing until something surfaces as clearly wrong. If I ride it as if there is nothing wrong do I risk mangling something up in there even worse. I may get a leakdown test to see if there is truly something to worry about. Any thoughts appreciated.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,238 Posts
I don't suppose you have a digital camera and could take a picture of the "rich" plugs, could you?

There are so many variations in "rich." A little rich isn't going to do anything but hurt your mileage, whereas a lot rich could surely cause the carbon buildup that's keeping you down.

Any way you could show those plugs to us?

--Justin
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
921 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Yes Justin, I'll try to take a couple of digital pics of the plugs tomorrow. I've not posted pics before--I'l give it a try though. Another thing--that tap, tap, tap in the top of the front cylinder--it's very pronounced when engine is cold but it goes away when it reaches operating temperature. Any guesses as to whether that is anything to worry about?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
921 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Took pics of the plugs today; resolution w/a 2.1 megapixel camera was not good enough to post. A friend is trying again tonight w/a much better camera. Will attempt to post pics when they're good enough.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,238 Posts
Jon sent me the picts of his spark plugs for everyone to take a peek at. They aren't as black as I expected them to be. I think I'm reading a slightly rich condition, but I don't think this would cause a whole lot of carbon fouling.

Take a look for yourselves:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,852 Posts
well they look decent however because they weren't put in and pulled after an abrupt shut down at the given engine speed we want to fix it's hard to say conclusively.

that being said you'd likely have a hard time doing any better wihout a sniffer unless you dont mind jetting and rejeting(markc)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
57 Posts
My plugs look very similar cold and checked with an abrupt engine stop after running on them at least 30 minutes. I've been tweaking the mixture a bit but notice a little lag leaned out or fuel mileage goes down when I richen a bit. Other than that, when "tweaked" it runs great.
I to hear a very slight rap up front for the first few seconds of a cold start but that goes away. I've just thought that things were a little dry oil wise since thats the farthest from the oil and pump.
 
1 - 9 of 9 Posts
Top