New Owner, New Rider, Lots of Problems
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  1. #1
    Junior Member NateE's Avatar
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    Hey Guys, I just bought a TW200 as my first bike three weeks ago and I'm already running into some issues. Hopefully you guys can help.



    I bought a 1987 with 1700 miles from craigslist and it seemed to be in great shape for its age. I have never ridden before so I signed up for the next available MSF course and took the bike to the dealership to have the fuel petcock replaced (the one on it was REALLY hard to turn) and to have the bike looked over. The guys at the dealership were really impressed with the bike and said it seemed to be basically good as new. The next week I took the MSF course on a TW, got insurance, registration, gear, and was ready to go riding. Took my bike out around town the next day and it ran great for about 100 miles. Seemed to perform just as well, if not better than the 2011 I took my course on. The next day I decided to take it up in the mountains and try some twisties (paved). I took it easy for the first 50 miles or so and the bike ran great. After that I decided to try and push it a little harder. It seemed to perform fine to me, but when we stopped for gas the friend I was riding with said there was some white smoke in my exhaust. I checked the oil level and it was between the lines, so I filled it up with fuel and kept riding. A few miles later on a steep winding downhill section it starting smoking much worse and started missing and stuttering. The back wheel was starting to slide on the corners too, which made really uncomfortable so I pulled over. The bike immediately died and oil starting pouring out of the airbox, covering the back side of the bike, including the back tire, which probably explains the sliding. Within a few minutes almost all of the oil was on the ground and fuel was dripping from the bottom of the carb. There was no way I was going to try riding it home, so I had my friend bring my truck and loaded the bike up and took it home.



    I immediately got on the forum to see if I could diagnose the problem, and from what I read it seems like either a stuck carb float, residue in the crankcase causing high pressure, or blow-by from bad rings or cylinder walls. The next morning I drained the few drops of oil left in the bike, which smelled like gas, and refilled. Tried to start but no luck. The carb was still dripping fuel with the valve on, so I pulled it off and took the bowl off. It looked pretty clean and the float didn't seem to be sticking, but I still cleaned it the best i could without disassembling it any more. Put it back on the bike and the fuel drip stopped, but the bike still would not start. I then replaced the spark plug since the old one was pretty black, but still won't start. What should I try next? I put some Sea Foam in the spark plug hole to let sit overnight, but I'm not very optimistic. Any suggestions? I'm new to motorcycle maintenance but have a decent amount of experience with cars and yard equipment, and after buying the bike, gear, MSF course, etc. I really don't have the money to take it to the dealership. Can I get an accurate compression measurement without warming up the engine? I bought a compression gauge but it doesn't have the right adapter. Hopefully I can find one tomorrow. Thanks in advance for any help.

  2. #2
    Senior Member lizrdbrth's Avatar
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    Drain your airbox then clean and re-oil your filter before trying to restart it. If you don't you'll be back to square one the first time you hit the brakes.



    I can explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you.

    Powdercoated '87 frame, extended swingarm, YZ fork legs, ATV tire, 14/55, XT350 tank, spliced quick-release seat, disc brake conversion, beeg headlight, beeger rack, Lizrdcooler, Lizrdventz and bunch of other stuff all covered in invisible ink.

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  3. #3
    Member jflynn's Avatar
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    It sounds like the rings blew. Get ready to teach yourself how to rebuild an engine (if you really can't pay someone else to do it) and go to work. It's not really that hard if you have the aptitude and patience, and you'll love the bike just that much more after you do it yourself.
    "What's 'dude'? Is that like 'dude ranch'?"

    "Dude means nice guy. Dude means a regular sort of person."

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  5. #4
    Senior Member jbfla's Avatar
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    The dripping fuel from the carb overflow indicates that the float valve is not fully closing, or the oring on the float valve seat needs to be replaced. With a bike that old and with so few miles, my bet is on an old, deteriorated oring.



    Losing all the crankcase oil through the air box is much more serious. A compression check seems to be a good starting place.



    Check your valve clearances before you do the compression check.



    Jb
    2018 Triumph Street Twin..............2016 CB500F
    2014 XT250 ..................................2008 H-D Softail Deluxe
    2008 SV 650..................................2007 DR 650..

  6. #5
    Senior Member TW_in_BC's Avatar
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    Never mind...I just re-read the post.



    Others seem to have the right idea!
    2008 TW200
    Southwest corner of BC Canada

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  7. #6
    Junior Member NateE's Avatar
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    Thanks everyone for the advice.



    I measured the valve clearances and they were in spec, did a compression test and it measured 80 psi, so I decided to check the rings. When I got the cylinder off I realized that things are much worse than I thought. There are deep gouges in the piston and in the cylinder wall, as shown in the pictures below.



    Should I try to have the cylinder re-bored? I can't find an OEM piston bigger than +1mm and I don't know if that will be enough to get those gouges out. Would an Ebay cylinder be worth trying? Any idea what could have caused this?



    Thanks again for the help guys. I really hope I can get this thing running again soon.












  8. #7
    Senior Member lizrdbrth's Avatar
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    Wow. That thing sat for a very long time with water in the cylinder.



    Are the crosshatch marks yours, or from the P.O.? If they aren't yours I'd go back and burn his house down.



    Figuratively, of course.



    I can explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you.

    Powdercoated '87 frame, extended swingarm, YZ fork legs, ATV tire, 14/55, XT350 tank, spliced quick-release seat, disc brake conversion, beeg headlight, beeger rack, Lizrdcooler, Lizrdventz and bunch of other stuff all covered in invisible ink.

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  9. #8
    Senior Member B-dub's Avatar
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    Sorry for that mess, but this is a good opportunity for you to go to a 225 piston and cylinder for a little boost in power. Start watching Ebay. We also have a couple of members parting TW's. Look in the classifieds on this forum.
    My handle is B-dub, I ride a T-dub, and drive a V-dub.

  10. #9
    Senior Member lizrdbrth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NateE View Post
    .....Any idea what could have caused this?


    Here's what happened:



    The tipoff is that damage is in one area. This usually occurs on the kickstand side of the motor or on the front side of the cylinder with forward-leaning cylinders and the rut in the cylinder wall is perfectly aligned with the rings. The bike sat with water in its cylinder for an extended period at some point in the it's life (perhaps repeated for many seasons) corroding that rut. Once a cylinder becomes filled with water it might take months for the water to fully evaporate, depending upon climate and the position of the valves. The water in the kicktand and forward side of the cylinder remains the longest and the last to evaporate



    Once the bike was restarted the rings kept trying to find a home in the rut and when no home could be found there they bent the ring lands which eventually caused the piston deformation and subsequent damage..



    Unless you attempted to clean up the cylinder with a hone after the fact, the crosshatch pattern indicates to me that the P.O. did a quickie dingleball hone and ring job, then passed his troubles on to you.



    If the hone marks are yours, odds are P.O. only thought the rings has siezed from sitting. He may only have poured oil down the cylinder, freed up the motor and got it running enough to pass his troubles on to you. A bit less deliberate and evil in intent, but at best a 50/50 proposition.



    I can explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you.

    Powdercoated '87 frame, extended swingarm, YZ fork legs, ATV tire, 14/55, XT350 tank, spliced quick-release seat, disc brake conversion, beeg headlight, beeger rack, Lizrdcooler, Lizrdventz and bunch of other stuff all covered in invisible ink.

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  11. #10
    Junior Member NateE's Avatar
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    Thanks for the explanation, lizrdbrth. I thought it must have been something that I did wrong since it seemed to run fine when I first got it. It never crossed my mind that the P.O. would be evil enough to hone and re-ring it just to get it running long enough to pass it on to me. He seemed like a decent guy. Good news is I found a cylinder and piston on Ebay for a good price, and the rings and gaskets should be here tomorrow. With a little luck I might be riding it again this weekend.

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