ATV Questions from Readers

Oct. 01, 2005 By ORC STAFF
ENGINE
TRANSMISSION
Can I adjust my own valves?....Valves My clutch doesn't engage or disengage properly.What could be the problem?.... Clutch
What kind of oil should I use?....Oil
The Importance of your ...AIR FILTER
How do I rebuild my 2 stroke motor ? ....2 Stroke Rebuild
How can I get MORE POWER from my 4 stroke motor?....MORE POWER
I have a hard time getting my quad started or it will not run at all.....WHY ? Start
How to "True" a crankshaft
Replacing those crank bearings and seals
Understanding how a 2-stroke works

Air Filter
One of the MOST neglected parts of your engine is your air filter. A dirty air filter can tremendously affect the performance of your ATV. A dirty filter can Keep your engine from starting. A dirty filter will allow dirt to pass through the filter possibly causing to your engine. ***PARTICULARLY THOSE 2 STROKES.***
For you guys that ride with an open air box.... Take a spare air filter with you when you go riding or when you go to the race track. Have it clean, oiled, and in a plastic bag ready to use. This way when have finished riding "The Dusty Trail", all you have to do is change the filter. This will enable you to clean the filter after you're done riding for the day.  
Clean your Air Filter OFTEN !!!!
I Have A Hard Time Starting My Quad.....Why ?
THINGS TO CHECK 1) Air filter..is it clean? The motor has to inhale. 2) Exhaust baffles..are they clean? The motor has to exhale. (Maybe it sounds stupid but I saw a guy get mud in the exhaust - the bike wouldn't start) 3) Spark...getting any? (a) Check plug.. is it dirty? Is the gap correct? Try a new one anyway. (b) Check for broken, cracked, frayed or split wires. (c) Faulty CDI unit. (d) Faulty pulse generator. (e) Faulty reverse switch. (f) Faulty ignition switch. 4)Compression...is it low? (a) Worn cylinder (b) Worn piston & rings (c) Blown gaskets. (d) Valves....Could be stuck open, out of adjustment, damaged or an improperly adjusted decompression system. 5)Carburetion... (a) Getting any gas... Are the gas tank and carb breather tubes plugged? Check the float level. Plugged fuel filter? (b) Improper carb adjustments. (c) Check for dirt in the carb. (Dirt in the carb can get in the jets and the air passage ways causing a motor not to run, run rich, and run lean). (d) Too much gas..flooding?.... Check float level ,Is gas leaking past float valve (could be faulty) (e) Dirty air cleaner There are a few things that can make your quad not want to start.

My Clutch Doesn't Engage or Disengage Properly. What Could Be The Problem? #1) Does your clutch have a difficult time disengaging? It could be............ (a) The clutch lever may be damaged. (b) The cable may need oiled. You can purchase a cable oiling kit from a bike shop. (c) The clutch basket may have "worn spots" on it where the clutch plates come in contact with it. Click here to learn how to fix Clutch Basket. #2) Clutch grabs slightly at idle (a) Out of adjustment (b) Warped clutch plates. (c) Oil / trans fluid is to heavy. #3) Clutch slips (a) Out of adjustment (b)Worn / damaged clutch plates (c) Weak clutch springs

Can I adjust my own valves?.... Adjusting you valves is one of things everyone with a 4-stroke should learn to do. 4-strokes need the valves adjusted on a regular basis,and knowing how to do it can save you a trip to the bike shop and some cash. Now obviously I can't cover everyones' quad so I'm going to give an overview on how to adjust the valves on a Honda 250X. Get the exact specs (valve clearance) for your quad and follow the same basic principles. #1) Remove all items that may be nessessary - fenders and gas tank, etc. #2) Remove the valve adjuster covers. #3) Turn the crankshaft counter clockwise untill the timing marks line up and the piston is "Top Dead Center" on the compression stroke. The rockers should be a little loose. If they are not, turn the crank one full turn until the timing marks line up again. #4) Inspect the valve clearance by inserting a feeler gauge between the adjusting screw and the valve stem. If the clearance is too loose or too tight you need to adjust the valves. #5) Loosen the locknut with a wrench while holding the adjuster screw still with a screwdriver. #6) With the locknut loose you turn the screwdriver to either tighten or loosen the adjuster to the specified clearance. #7) Tighten the locknut while holding the adjuster still with your screwdriver and recheck the clearance again with your feeler gauge. You will know when the clearance is adjusted properly when you insert the proper thickness feeler gauge between the rocker and the valve stem it should go in between them without being loose. You should feel a slight drag. #8) Adjust all valves using same procedure. #9) Double check each locking nut, make sure they are tight. The last thing you want is a nut spinning off and falling down into the motor. #10) Recheck valve clearances. If everything looks good, reassemble the beast and you're good to go. *NOTE* It is very important that you only adjust valves while the motor is COLD. The reason for this is simple. The reason for having valve clearance is because metal expands when it is heated. Valve clearance gives the metal room to expand without binding everything up. If you adjust the valves while the motor is HOT, you will have excessive valve clearance when the motor cools down and the metal returns to it normal size again. You will know this by the LOUD tapping noise coming from the motor. If you're not sure you can do the job right the first time.........practice on your buddy's quad .


What kind of oil should I use?....
People ask me all the time.."What kind of oil do you use?" I always tell them "it doesn't matter what kind I use - you have to find what works for you." Here are some basic guidelines. ALWAYS use a top quality oil; DON'T use some cheap 49 cents-a-can oil.

Four Strokes (air cooled)

Two Strokes (water cooled)

Summer

Fall

Winter

Spring

Summer

Fall

Winter

Spring

Temp
70-100

Temp 40-70

Temp
0-40

Temp
40-70

Two strokes are different from four strokes in that a two stroke doesn't need oil to lube the engine. They do use fluid in the transmission. You can use motor oil or you can use a special fluid made by a major manufacturer for two strokes.The fluid is more of a trans fluid - its what I use. It makes the clutch "FEEL" and work nicely.

20w50

10w40

5w30

10w40

I ride pretty hard in the summer. I like a heavy oil in the heat.

As the temp cools down a bit, I'll go with a lighter oil.

I find the clutch works a lot better with a lighter oil at this temperature.

As the temp goes up again I go with more protection.

 

Please submit any technical questions to the bulletin board.

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