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Can I start my XS650 using a jump starter?

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by caj411, Jan 11, 2019.

  1. caj411

    caj411 XS650 Enthusiast

    I made my XS a kick start only, removed all the old electronics and replaced with nothing but electric ignition and advancer. Made it as a fair weather ride, but now its cold as hell outside and want to run it a bit, keep it healthy, and of course I can't get it to start using the kick method.

    Here's my question, I left the starter installed on the engine, just not wired to anything. I have a battery charger with 75 amp starter mode, could I touch the positive on the starter to turn the engine over and get it going? OR likewise use a car battery with jumper cables.
  2. xjwmx

    xjwmx XS650 Guru Top Contributor

    Cold weather, should be easier to start with the kick than electric, for sure. I'd use the charger to charge the battery which will help. You can jump it with a car battery, but have the car not running. But since your starter is disconnected from everything, prob ok to have the car running
  3. caj411

    caj411 XS650 Enthusiast

    There is no battery, its just a kick start only with a capacitor. Sorry if I wasn't clear. There are no relays, nothing, just the starter attached to the engine but currently disconnected from any electrical circuit. That was why I was asking if I put the ground on the frame and touched the positive of the starter would that be a simple way to get it started when its not wanting to start with the kicker.
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2019
  4. delagem

    delagem XS650 Enthusiast

    It will work just fine. You will begin to damage the threads on the starter after a few times; it would be best if you put a couple nuts on the post, so the arcing damages the nut (easily replaceable) instead of the thread.
    peanut likes this.
  5. XSLeo

    XSLeo XS650 Guru Top Contributor

    I would put a cable on the starter, run it up under the seat, like on a stock bike.
    Be much easier to get to for jumping.
    If you winterized your bike, starting it up and running it for a few minutes is not a good idea.
    Once put to sleep, let it sleep.
    peanut, gggGary and delagem like this.
  6. caj411

    caj411 XS650 Enthusiast

    Thanks for the response. I'll add a nut like you suggest.
  7. caj411

    caj411 XS650 Enthusiast

    The cable run is a good idea. My mechanic told me I need to run it at least once a week, what do you do to winterize yours before putting it away until Spring? Mine is in the garage, but I haven't done anything to it except park it in the corner. If I can winterize it and leave it alone, that would be fine with me.
  8. gggGary

    gggGary Stop that! Top Contributor XS650.com Supporter

    I try to have the tanks mostly full of gas, park em and throw a sheet over. I make 2-3 rounds of charging batteries over the winter. Brrm brmm come spring.
    Stick a hair dryer under the carbs pointed at cylinders for 15-20 minutes, makes it a LOT easier to start when it's cold
    delagem likes this.
  9. caj411

    caj411 XS650 Enthusiast

    A hairdryer to warm the cylinders, now that is southern engineering, I'll do it next time. I don't have any batteries to charge, so that's a plus.
    gggGary likes this.
  10. delagem

    delagem XS650 Enthusiast

    If you're storing your bike:
    Add fuel stabilizer, fill tank to mix (smaller air gap means less moisture in gas)
    Run engine enough to ensure stabilizer makes its way into carbs
    Shut off fuel to carbs
    Disconnect battery, trickle charge
    Air up tires to sidewall maximum
    Cover with a breathable cover or sheet, especially if you park on non vapor-barrier concrete

    Like Gary, I connect battery to a trickle charger 2-3x during the off season, for a day.

    I used to pull spark plugs, and put in a squirt of fogging oil. I don't bother anymore.

    I made a "Battery Tender" out of one of these UPG wall packs; 1/3 the price:

  11. caj411

    caj411 XS650 Enthusiast

    The one thing I can't do is shut off my petcock, that feature is not available on my 79', so I wonder if that is why my mechanic told me to make sure I run it regularly?
  12. There is no good reason to start a bike up every week that is in winter storage. You have no battery to charge. Every time you start the bike up with and ice cold engine water will start to condense in the oil when it starts to heat up. You would be surprised at the amount of water that Is generated from the cold air being heated up especially if it happens to be a warmer day outside and the engine is still ice cold from the night before. No matter how dry the air is there is no such thing as zero humidity. All that water ends up in your oil and you will never run the engine long enough to burn it off without riding it. And in the winter time on an air cooled engine that is most likely hours. That water will eventually emulsify in the oil and you end up with mayonnaise in your oil which will start to form at the coldest spots in the engine with will most likely be the tappets and cams in my experience. You will start to see the mayo in your site glass. Mayo is not a good lubricator.

    Methods above are spot on. Fill it with fuel, stabilize the fuel, run it to circulate the fuel then turn it off and drain the fuel bowls in the carbs for good measure. If you can’t turn the petcock off you can disconnect the fuel hose and plug the ends for added measure. It is just to prevent the vacuum activated petcock from leaking into the carbs. If at the same time the float valve in the carb is stuck then you will end up with a crankcase full of fuel. Not good. The chances of all that happening is slim if the petcock is not already leaking when you drain the carbs. You will know if it is leaking when you drain the carbs and the fuel keeps coming. If it stops you are good.

    Just my 2 cents.
    Superjet, Jim, mrtwowheel and 3 others like this.
  13. delagem

    delagem XS650 Enthusiast

    Vacuum operated petcocks accomplish the same thing. Just don’t leave them on “prime”.

    In addition to oil diluted by gas, I’ve had a few bikes where the fuel in the bowl evaporates, more fuel is added, more evaporation, and the bowl fills with goo, carbs get plugged, etc. KTMs are particularly known for this.

    Forgot to add, change engine oil right before storage. Also, plug your air box holes, to keep mice out, and put a note on your key switch to remind you next spring. Or put out D-Con or other mouse countermeasures. I’ve found mouse nests and chewed air filters on several bikes over the years...
    Jim, canuck1969 and TwoManyXS1Bs like this.
  14. XSLeo

    XSLeo XS650 Guru Top Contributor

    Plus one on everything they said.
    Superjet, Jim and gggGary like this.
  15. gggGary

    gggGary Stop that! Top Contributor XS650.com Supporter

    [QUOTE="delagem, post: 577006, member: 28141" plug your air box holes, to keep mice out,[/QUOTE]

    Found in a running bike I bought, PO said "I think it needs a tune up".
    Dry garage kept, the mice? had been stealing the dog's food. IT was not a simple path to the airbox inlets!
    PS plug exhausts too. I have had some spectacular amounts of corn, grain, straw, newspaper get blown out the pipes on first fire of barn bikes.
    A 500 Husky 2 stroke single had the piston WELDED in the bore, mr mouse entered through the exhaust, nested and pissed in the cylinder!
    Superjet, Oddjob, Jim and 3 others like this.
  16. mrtwowheel

    mrtwowheel Honda Etched On Brain Top Contributor

    That was a good two cents worth. I've seen the complaints about rusting exhausts over one winter from these guys who start their bikes for short periods all through the winter.

  17. xjwmx

    xjwmx XS650 Guru Top Contributor

    Mine had a big rock in the gas tank.
    gggGary likes this.
  18. 650Skull

    650Skull Dinosaur Lives Top Contributor

    Vacuum operated petcocks don't let fuel run into the carbs when the tap is set on run position unless the engine is running......I know it doesn't make sense, that's why they are called vacuum operated petcocks, and why the hose from the petcock to the inlet manifold has to be secured with no cracks and using a clip to make a good seal

    To check that fuel the fuel is running through the petcock, set petcock lever to run, remove the fuel line from the carb, (put bowl under hose), and move tap lever to prime. Fuel should run out of the hose........now turn the tap to run.......It should stop.........
    gggGary likes this.
  19. Does not take much to bugger up a vacuum petcock. All it takes is a piece of crap in the diaphragm and it will pass fuel. Can work one second and the next it will not. Not having an off position on that petcock is just asking for something to happen. My old KLR had a vacuum petcock but it also had an OFF position for that specific reason. I changed mine on the XS to a manual petcock. It just eliminates one more worry…assuming you remember to turn it off. ;) Just comes down to personal choice I guess.
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2019
    Superjet likes this.
  20. Yup. If I have to start mine in the winter for maintenance I try to run it as long as I can. With my VStrom I will let it cycle the cooling fan at least twice. My Guzzi is air cooled so I wait until I can’t touch the valve cover anymore with a bare hand. Neither way is perfect but it will help more than just running it a couple of minutes. For the exhaust just make sure it is not blowing water vapour anymore. That should be hot enough to evaporate any water but it will still collect it as it is cooling down as it fills back up with cold air.

    Like I said before, there is no good reason to start a bike in winter storage. It is a lose lose affair.

    Guess I went a little off the thread topic. Back to the regularly scheduled program.
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2019
    gggGary likes this.

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