[Made in England]
Help 70: Carbs will not Tickle

Several Readers have been having problems with Gas flow in there Carburetors. This manifests itself with unusually long “Tickling” times to flood the Carburetors before starting. I have readers that buy new carbs and immediately have problems flooding the Carburetors! The carbs may run good and spark plug may have good color, but, the carburetor will not flood when you tickle it to start it!

This problem indicates that either the inlet to the bowl or breather from the bowl are restricted. If your Carburetors will not flood in a reasonable amount of time here is a simple test to determine the problem.

1. Remove the Carburetor bowl or the plug at the bottom of the bowl. Place a cup under were the bowl/plug was.

2. Turn on the flow of gas from the tank and observe the flow of gas into the cup.

3. If the gas flow seems restricted to the carb(observed from step 2), go to step 4. If the gas flows easily out of the bowl area under the carb, then carb is not venting correctly. Remove the Air Cleaner. The bowl is vented from within the bowl to the enrichment (tickle) mechanism, then, out a hole near the throat of the inlet to Carb. See two holes on each side of the throat of the carb? One is plugged, this is normal. The other hole makes it way past the tickler, then to the bowl. Clean this passage way out with Carburetor Cleaner. Make sure tickler and tickler hole is clean. Inspect the float. A plastic float will warp and bend causing the carb not tickle. Tickler won’t reach far enough and the float is shutting off the float valve. Replace the float with a modern float.

4. If the gas is not flowing down to the bowl, then the gas to the bowl inlet is restricted or maybe vaperlock. Try turning on the gas with the gas cap removed, check the flow. Maybe the tank cap is not venting correctly. No, check the filter in the tank, carb filter, gas lines and fittings to the carburetors. If it is a dual carburetor bike this narrows it down to the flow on the one side or the elbow on the primary side (nothing in the tank)? Try running the gas with the reserve on, does it help? Flush out the carburetor passages to the bowl.

5. Last step, clean the bowl out, including, the verticle shafts in the bowl and all the holes.

An old trick to forcing the tickler to work is to blow into the tank with the tickler on. A seal has to be made with your mouth in the gas opening and gas tastes bad so be careful. Do not breath in gas fumes. Blowing in the tank causes pressure in the tank and forces the gas out the tickler!

If any passage seems clogged and Carburetor cleaner does not clean it out. Probe it with a small wire, but be careful not to damage anything or leave a piece of wire in the hole. Flush out the hole when done. If the carb is not still bleeding, there is another "Help" discussion on how to adjust the float level.

Good Luck, give it a try!

Keep it in the saddle!


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