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Old 02-10-2011, 12:39 PM   #1
Andybuildz
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Default How do I start my bike..haha..

..A lil' about me as a newbie here and to biking:
Happy to have found this site...I hope
I'm a 59 Y.O home renovations contractor/builder (hands on), husband and and father of two girls that does work for customers as well as buying a wreck, living in it while I fix it and then turn it over. I feel like a gypsy at this point but at least when things are slow...like now...I always have tons to do on my own spec wreck.

Anyway...I bought this 95 Yamaha Virago 1100 with less than 6000 miles on it about four years ago as a starter bike. Never rode before b/c I was always so busy I never got around to learning. It just sat in my garage and in my mind until last year when I decided to take classes EXCEPT the guy I landed a huge job from said he wanted to know if he could borrow my bike to learn on. The guy was pretty loaded and the job he gave me on his house was huge so how could I say no. Bike needed some work too and he said he'd take care of fixing it which he did. He actually spent close to a grand getting it into top shape!

Jobs over, he returned the bike and now springs rolling around...I HOPE! Decided I need to get the bike started now so I have the new battery he bought last year on a trickle charge which I should have done last fall when he returned it..gulp.
Question is_____________

When the bike was returned to me it ran fantastic. I started it up once every few weeks for ten or so minutes to keep the parts oiled up..not to mention I was falling in love with it but it was too late in the season to get a license, test. etc so I figured I'd wait till this spring.
My wife and I sold the house we were in and moved to the wreck we're in now.
I emptied the gas from the bike so the movers could put it on their truck with all my furniture.

All moved in and tipped the movers $250. The move was a days work for the four of them. I "think" they had a tude' about $250 being too small a tip but I'm not real sure. Seemed real fair to me but...who knows.

They kept looking round my bike towards the end of the day I noticed and made me wonder if they were just looking at it or what.

Anyway...I started the bike up 2-3 x since and it started up great. the last time it started up, ran a few minutes then died...same the next time. I stopped trying because my lawn tractor's engine seized just months before from an undetected oil leak it had...grrrrrr..and I had that in my mind, I was thinking...I wonder if those movers let a buncha oil outta my bike, or am I just being paranoid?

Never changed the oil on a bike before but it seems simple enough. Thing is changing the filter makes it a little more complex on my bike and really all I wanna know is that it has 3.8 +- qts of oil in it.

I don't wanna start it up to heat up the oil to change it in case I'm really out of oil so I'm wondering if I could just open up the plug...drain out whats in there to see exactly what does come out...and if it's close to what it should be (minus the filters worth of oil) I'd just add fresh oil in the amt that came out and try and start'r up. There's a tiny window at the bottom of the engine with the oil level thats REAL hard to see but even with that...you do have to heat up the bikes oil for that window to be accurate and I don't wanna chance that.
Any thoughts???? Please!
Mucho thanxo
andy
PS...Gonna try and post a link to a photo of my bike.
It's the black bike closest to my van..
https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/phot...eat=directlink
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Old 02-10-2011, 02:17 PM   #2
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If you never put fuel stabilizer in the gas (and then ran the engine long enough to treat the whole fuel system), you most probably have gunked up one or both (?) carbs.

You'll need to pull the carbs and clean them thoroughly.

Pull the tank and rinse it out with new gas, pouring the rinse into a clean waste can/bottom of a gallon milk jug. Give it time to settle, and pour that fuel into your mower through a coffee filter. It'll run fine on it.

When you get the bike running properly, take it for a leisurely spin around the neighborhood to get the engine up to temp, then change the oil and filter.

If your tires are not dry-rotted, you'll be good to go! AFTER you take a Riding course.
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Old 02-10-2011, 04:35 PM   #3
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I can't believe the movers would've drained oil from the bike, more lilely they slightly damaged it & were afraid you were gonna notice. And $250 split 4 ways is a better tip then most gave here in Va when I was in the moving business (10 yrs ago).
Also, about your oil viewer, it should be reasonably accurate cold, but make the bike level (2 man job usually).
Go get your class taken & enjoy it.
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Old 02-10-2011, 09:18 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A Star Ride View Post
I can't believe the movers would've drained oil from the bike, more lilely they slightly damaged it & were afraid you were gonna notice. And $250 split 4 ways is a better tip then most gave here in Va when I was in the moving business (10 yrs ago).
Also, about your oil viewer, it should be reasonably accurate cold, but make the bike level (2 man job usually).
Go get your class taken & enjoy it.
I'll add - SOME bikes use a dipstick on the filler-cap, rather than a sight-glass to view the oil level.

BOTH need the bike to be straight-up for an accurate measurement. If it uses a dipstick, don't screw it in after you pull it and wipe it - just stab it back in and pull it out: "perfect" level will be right in the middle between the upper and lower marks, IMHO.

If you have a wet clutch (almost certainly on a Japanese bike) the oil weight or brand isn't so important (or "bike" or "auto" type) - be certain to use oil that is NOT "Energy Conserving" type oil - they have additives that can coat the clutch friction-discs and cause them to slip.

Rotella 15w40 and Mobil 1 15w50 Synthetic are both favourites here.
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Old 02-11-2011, 06:03 AM   #5
Morbo the Destroyer
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Here's the best upgrade possible for your bike:
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Old 02-13-2011, 05:47 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andybuildz View Post
I don't wanna start it up to heat up the oil to change it in case I'm really out of oil
Here's a novel idea: CHECK the oil and see what the level IS
!!!

ANd STOP running the bike if it can't be ridden. That potentially does more harm than good.

Are you sure that the pet**** (gas valve) isn't turned off......or that it's not really running out of gas ????

Cost wise, you've still got a hell of a deal there, how about having your local dealer come get it and check it out ??
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Last edited by Easy Rider 2 : 02-13-2011 at 05:50 AM.
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