1976 Gold Wing Swamp Thing

Jimbonaut

Over 1,000 Posts
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I know that one coil feeds 1&2 plugs and the other feeds 3&4. As I'm not getting a spark at 1&2 I guess I need to check that that coil is in decent shape. What would be the first thing to check? Points or coil?

Edit...points. I'm going to have a dig into Randakks blog and try to figure this stuff out
 
Last edited:

Maritime

Over 10,000 Posts
an easy check is swap the left coil and right coil feed and see if the same side still sparks or if the other does.
 

Maritime

Over 10,000 Posts
Swap the 2 leads coming out of the points to the oposite colour. I think they are blue and yellow
if the spark goes from one set of coils to the other, it's not coil. If no spark on either, bad coil on 1&2 or bad wire to that coil.
 

Maritime

Over 10,000 Posts
no inside the points. follow the wire up from the points to the first set of connectors and swap them. They live up by the condenser/P-Cock.
 

Maritime

Over 10,000 Posts
red circle is the wire to follow to first set of bullet connectors. Green circle is where they usually live.
ndwI63Yh.jpg
 

Jimbonaut

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DTT SUPPORTER
Mate, thanks. Pictures tell a thousand words. Now I totally know what you mean. So, just swap the two bullet connectors over in that green circle (where they hook up to the condenser) and check for spark again?
 

Maritime

Over 10,000 Posts
Yep it just swaps which coil gets juice from each side of the points so you swap from 1-2 to 3-4 and vice versa. so turn over and check for spark it the spark moves, something at the points is off and if no spark at all then the coil or the wires to it are buggered.
 

pidjones

Over 1,000 Posts
There will be two bullets connected to a socket for each coil. The sockets go to coils, the bullets go to points and condenser. It's easy to trace the wires back to either side of the condenser (it's about 20mm diameter ~100mm long mounted to front of the battery box, under the finned regulator). It really doesn't matter which condenser plug goes to which coil, but REALLY matters which point goes to which. The wires to the coils and points should be color coded and you can compare to the color code in the FSM manual diagram. Andm throw the Haynes manual away!

Honest, the next thing I would do is take the points cover off, take the alternator bolt cover off, put a 12 mm offset or short socket with ratchet on the alternator bolt, and check that both points are opening and closing. Drag a bill (any denomination) between the points to clean them a bit. Take the timing port cover off, get a good light and check the static timing by one of the methods in the FSM. Then see if it will make noise. Something hints to me that one of your points is either not opening, not closing, or so corroded (or not connected) that the coils aren't being fired.
 

Jimbonaut

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DTT SUPPORTER
Turns out one of the bullet connectors in the housing up by the petcock there wasn't properly connected, once it was I got spark on all 4. Then just whaled on the starter button. 15 seconds on, 30 off until the battery drained. Charged up the battery and had at it again until finally the engine caught and fired up. Really took a long time. Blowing smoke like nothing else, but I'm hoping that's just years of oil that's seeped past the rings. Idles like shit so couldn't keep the engine running for long enough to see if the smoke'll clear. Battery dead again so got it on charge and will try again tomorrow.

There's life. God knows when the last time this old behemoth burnt gas but sure hope she'll be burning a lot more, and soon.
 

Sderbyshire

Into Sailing, classic Triumph cars and motorbikes.
Great new James, it’s always nice when an old neglected bike like Swampy fires up !
 

pidjones

Over 1,000 Posts
Congrats!

Keep an eye on the expansion tank. As the engine heats up, it will rise, then when turned off and cooled down should fall back. Might fall back lower if there was air trapped. As long as it doesn't start looking like a milk shake or foaming while running you are good. There are two pipes to the overflow tank cap. One comes from the top (inside) and leads to ground. The other comes from a tube in the center that comes up from the bottom and connects to the other pipe that goes to the radiator cap barb.

Aft right side of the carbs is the idle adjust screw. It's OK to idle ~2000 RPM while getting it adjusted and then slowly lower it down. There is a lot of mass to that engine, so it takes a while to warm. You can get an idea if all cylinders are firing by checking exhaust temp with an IR gun. They never run exactly the same, but you can identify one that's being bashful.

Check battery voltage when running over 2000 RPM and it should start climbing. Mine will start out low if the battery is drained, but eventually gets well over 13.5 Volts.

Sounded great when it finally caught, didn't it?
 

Jimbonaut

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DTT SUPPORTER
Sounded great when it finally caught, didn't it?
Getting a bike fired up for the first time is always the greatest sound to come out of my garage. It's hard to describe the feeling, but fortunately - to you guys anyway - I don't need to. It's a huge reason for why we do what we do, justifies all the blood, sweat and tears (and dollar bills) that we pour into the things. Well, to us anyway. To the guy that has a terrace above my garage roof I'm the fucking bane of his existence - no more so than yesterday when the roar of a four cylinder boxer engine coming to life was accompanied by more smoke than a forest fire.
 

Jimbonaut

Over 1,000 Posts
DTT SUPPORTER
Still idling like an absolute horrorshow but fires up pretty quick now and doesn't seem to be smoking quite so badly. But...

...coupla things have become evident. First - smoke coming off the left head. I thought it was exhaust from a poorly fitting/absent exhaust gasket but it smells more like oil. So there's that. Second - found a small puncture in the front left underside of the crankcase here -

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- with a very small amount of, well, something not good coming out of it. Because pictures tell a thousand words -

9WFdxDPh.jpg


Chocolate milkshake-y. So I pulled the oil filter housing but the oil in there looked fine, and then cracked the oil drain bolt and the oil that came out looked fine too. What gives?
 

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