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Thread: '49 WL Starting issues as in not - Have spark and gas

  1. Re: '49 WL Starting issues as in not - Have spark and gas

    I am not over riding anything Robbie has told you, but I will say I find no need to retard the ignition to start my WL. Trying starting her with it in the normal running/advanced position. Purely a guess, and not as educated as others, but you never know. Good luck.
    1946 WL Solo
    1970 FLH
    1991 Sportster XLH
    1997 Wide Glide FXDWG
    2005 Road Glide FLTRI

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Twin Cities, MN
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    3,170

    Re: '49 WL Starting issues as in not - Have spark and gas

    were the cams ever out of it? maybe pull the cam cover and check if the cams are installed correctly?
    1947 EL
    1948 FL Project
    1947WL Project
    2000FLSTC

    But there's booze in the blender
    And soon it will render
    That frozen concoction that helps me hang on

    You never get better....you just get less awful. "Joe Walsh"

  3. #23

    Re: '49 WL Starting issues as in not - Have spark and gas

    If itís on the compression stroke, mark is in the middle of the hole and the points just open when the timer is full advanced then itís something else. Someone has said it but the cam moves clockwise so the points should be at the front of the cam. If all these things are in order itís something else. Check the valve clearances and it these are right then itís a carb issue.
    1938 WLDR
    1940 WL (Race Bike)
    1944 WL
    1948WR
    19545KHK

    http://1944WL.webs.com

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Location
    Western Australia (The Wild West)
    Posts
    589

    Re: '49 WL Starting issues as in not - Have spark and gas

    One thing to check is to ensure you have a good Ground connection, otherwise you will have all sorts of electrical problems. Was your frame re-painted? Does the ground wire have a good metal to metal connection with the frame?

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Missouri City, Texas
    Posts
    11,026

    Re: '49 WL Starting issues as in not - Have spark and gas

    What model carb are you using? Seriously doubt it's the carb but what are you're HS and LS needles set for startup?

  6. #26

    Re: '49 WL Starting issues as in not - Have spark and gas

    Thanks again for the input.
    Bill, I've tried starting with and without retarding the spark, full throttle, half, quarter, even tried holding my mouth differently too.
    I don't know if anyone messed with the cams, although its obvious its been opened by the looks of the screws. I will make that a last resort.
    Dave, I've gone through the procedure so many times now that I feel pretty good about it being timed correctly, but being a 'cruit I am not 100% sure. I do get gas dripping out of the carb after priming.
    I've double checked the ground and have spark at the plugs. I've done DC troubleshooting in the past so I feel pretty good about the electrical.
    The carb is an M51. To start with the LS is 3 turns and the HS is 1-1/2 turns out. I tried the LS with different settings while exercising my leg.
    It has to be something simple that I'm missing, it should start. I have a few days off for the holidays so I am gonna get this sucker running one way or the other, I just have to. I mean its cool looking and I like looking at it but I'm thinking riding it would be even better.
    Thanks again! Karl.

  7. #27

    Re: '49 WL Starting issues as in not - Have spark and gas

    Quote Originally Posted by sixty5pan View Post
    I do get gas dripping out of the carb after priming.
    Ive got a dollar that your float is too high. Setting it on the bench is one thing, but when you mount it on the bike itíll be different.

    If your plugs are soaked after kicking thatís another way to tell.

    Bend the float tab down and go riding. Youíll probably have to do it a few times, you donít want to go overboard. Take off the float when you do it so you donít break the float.

  8. #28

    Re: '49 WL Starting issues as in not - Have spark and gas

    One time I installed the choke lever 180 out of position so I was putting the choke on when I though I was taking if off.

  9. #29
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Missouri City, Texas
    Posts
    11,026

    Re: '49 WL Starting issues as in not - Have spark and gas

    Carb settings should be adequate to let it run. A couple prime kicks shouldn't have gas dripping out of the carb so couldn't hurt to check float setting and make sure body plugs in the stem are installed and snug to confirm flooding isn't the problem...

  10. #30
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Jerrabomberr NSW Australia
    Posts
    67

    Re: '49 WL Starting issues as in not - Have spark and gas

    Another thing that might be making it difficult to start is too much oil in the bottom of the engine, due to a leaky oil pump. On the Indians there are two oil drain plugs at the bottom left hand side of the crankcase. The bottom one is to completely drain the oil out of the sump. The second higher up plug sets the oil to the correct level when you remove it and let the excess oil out. You will probably have the same setup on the Harley. Worth checking I think. Cheers.

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