hard to start - poor spark
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  1. #1
    Junior Member gerrychartrand's Avatar
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    Having lots of trouble starting my 2001 (electric start). When I check for spark, I get only a single spark when I first press the starter, then no spark as I keep it pressed for however long (a few seconds), then a spark again when I let go of the starter. On the rare occasion that it does start (likely due to the first sparking catching, it seems to run fine. Most likely a problem in the electrical system, but I have no clue what it is (this is my first bike).



    Any help/suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
    2001 TW200

    Jimbo shield

  2. #2
    Junior Member gerrychartrand's Avatar
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    I forgot to mention the spark plug is brand new, and the old one does the same.
    2001 TW200

    Jimbo shield

  3. #3
    Senior Member TW_in_BC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Midlife View Post
    I forgot to mention the spark plug is brand new, and the old one does the same.
    I have this same "problem" but I have learned to live with it. Last summer, I had to replace my stator winding and upon replacing it, I noticed the exact same thing as you mention; no real spark until you release the starter button.

    trust me...it IS sparking while you're cranking. You could hook up a timing light or some other sort of "spark checker" to verify this.

    The CDI makes a very powerful spark that may not be visible under normal light. Try it in a darkened garage if you can, you'll see the spark is there.



    Here is what I do to make starting so much easier.



    (Assuming a COLD engine)

    - Turn fuel petcock ON.

    - Pull out choke to about 80%

    - Crank for about one second then stop

    - "Blip" starter button quickly, mine starts immediately.



    I've found that "blipping" the starter button seems to work better than cranking non-stop...don't know why that is. When I say "blip" I mean to just touch the starter button momentarily...for a fraction of a second so that it just gives the engine a slight crank.



    Now I don't know if this spark problem started when I replaced the stator or if it was present since day one. Mine has always been a bit tricky to start because she is STOCK - no mods - and is therefore lean. But since switching to this new method of "blipping" the starter, she has been VERY reliable and quite easy to start, even when hot!



    Give it a try.
    2008 TW200
    Southwest corner of BC Canada

    YouTube channel: Hidden Content

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  5. #4
    Senior Member jbfla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TW_in_BC View Post
    I have this same "problem" but I have learned to live with it....
    TW_in_BC,



    I was hoping you had solved this anomaly.



    Mine does the same, but did not when I first acquired the TW. I don't remember when the problem first started. I've done minor carb mods but have not done any changes to the electrical/charging circuits.



    I now use your starter "blip" method too.



    jb
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