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Yamaha xs 400, Help a newbie get bike to run

This is a discussion on Yamaha xs 400, Help a newbie get bike to run within the Yamaha forums, part of the Manufacturers category; Here is the problem, I am mechanically inclined, but have no idea how to diagnose issues. So, here we go. ...


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Old 02-21-2011   #1
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Post Yamaha xs 400, Help a newbie get bike to run

Here is the problem, I am mechanically inclined, but have no idea how to diagnose issues. So, here we go. The guy I bought the bike from knows that it was in between an '81 and '83, but couldn't remember exactly what(is there any way to find that out with some kind of serial number?) My bike will kickstart, and will run at full choke, but the second I turn it to half choke or turn to choke off it sputters and dies. I have cleaned the carbs thoroughly, checked and reset the float levels, made sure all jets were clear, and tried to do everything I could think of that it said to do in the manual(as far as the carbs go). I made sure that my plugs are gapped to factory specs, and changed out the gas. Someone told me that it could be points, but I don't think I have them because I also have an electric starter. I was also told to sync the things on the back of the carbs that open into the engine using a nail trick(sorry don't remember what he called them just how he explained to do it). When I do get the idle to stay up, and take it down the block a ways it loses and gains power, and sputters like crazy. Anyone have some suggestions? Trying to figure this out because I want to know how to diagnose issues, but it's no fun having the thing held up in the garage. Thanks guys.
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Old 06-14-2011   #2
lha
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Default loss of power

You probably need to do a thorough cleaning of the carbs,soaking in hot water overnight.I use an old crock pot[Big one]and soak the carb in soapy water on low.In the morning you'll be shocked at the crud that comes out of that"clean" carb.You then blast out all soap residue with water,then poke a wire or torch tip cleaner,then carburetor cleaner[The kind in a spray can].Then reasemble,adjust and run.You should note that prior to cooking the carb,all rubber must be removed.If you don't have a manual,now's a good time to get one. lha
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