I...think I'm lean? - Star Motorcycle Forums: Star Raider, V-Max, V-Star, Road-Star Forum
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post #1 of 25 (permalink) Old 05-05-2015, 06:18 PM Thread Starter
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I...think I'm lean?

While I really don't know how to read spark plugs, I believe that these indicate that my bike is running lean?



And..



This is a 2009 V Star 650 with a little over 5k miles on it. I bought the bike used last fall when it had just over 4k miles. Since I have owned it, the exhaust tends to pop on deceleration, it is a little difficult to start with full choke on (I just have to hold the starter for a few seconds before it finally turns over, but runs well after that) and has had some bluing on the front pipe...



I do believe the bluing has gotten worse since I've been riding it. It starts out as a very dark blue and turns to a gold color. Sort of.

The pipes are stock. The air filter was pretty dirty when I got around to inspecting it, so I replaced it with a K&N filter. The popping and bluing existed before replacing the air filter.

Per the suggestions on the questions I asked here:

https://www.starbikeforums.com/forums...ad.php?t=64769

I took the tank off and snugged up all of the air intake bits around the carburetor and also ran a can of SeaFoam through the gas tank (not the entire can at once). I did not replace the fuel filter, as I didn't think it would be necessary at only 5k miles.

The previous owner didn't treat his fuel for ethanol and I suspect left it stored much of the winters he had it (from 2009 to 2014). He did tell me that the bluing on the pipes only started the last year or two he had it.

Could it be the fuel filter?

Does the PMS screw need adjusting? I do tend to drive like an old man (I'm not an old man tho) and cruise a lot in a high gear with the throttle not open that much.

Could the jets be partially clogged considering it was stored without fuel treatment often?

Could it be something else?

How do you suggest I approach this and in what order?

Thanks!

2009 V Star 650 Custom Midnight
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post #2 of 25 (permalink) Old 05-05-2015, 07:26 PM
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I don't see any cause for concern just by looking at those plugs. A little ash on the plugs is normal.

Take a look at this page:

http://ngksparkplugs.com/tech_suppor...qs/faqread.asp

Your pictures are nearly a perfect match to the first picture...the normal one. The list isn't all inclusive, but still sufficient.

2013 V Star 1300 Deluxe
OEM Tall Sissy Bar
Memphis Shades Fork Deflectors
Bridgestone Exedra Max Belted Tires
Baron's RSTD 7308 bar

Last edited by sparkn; 05-05-2015 at 07:33 PM.
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post #3 of 25 (permalink) Old 05-05-2015, 07:26 PM
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keep using carb cleaner,turn the pms screws out a quarter turn that will put some color on the plugs.
your idle may be low and contribute to difficult starting.These are high reving engines wait a bit before shifting,it might help keep things clean.
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post #4 of 25 (permalink) Old 05-06-2015, 06:44 AM
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K&N air filter will make it leaner than stock. AIS system causes this popping on decelleration. 2nd running the carb cleaner through it.

2000 Vstar 650 Classic , Firethorn orange Metal flake Urethane, OEM tall Windshield, 47 Harley Tail light mod, progressive springs, hard bags painted to match w/chr. bullet accents Custom Modified rear rack/backrest, Cobra Modified exhaust w/ chrome Pencil tips, Hyper charger kit,
PRV 15, Riser mounted speakers, Chrome levers,Fringe grips, studded Leather bib with pocket, Billet Oil filter relocation kit , 3.5 PMS w/ stock pilots, mains- 122.5, Custom billet t signals
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post #5 of 25 (permalink) Old 05-06-2015, 08:51 AM Thread Starter
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I thought the AIS only caused popping if something wasn't tuned properly?

Does that K&N air filter cause enough of a lean condition where rejetting is necessary? Altho, if the plugs look good, I don't see why I would need to?

And....I'm still a little confused about what exactly is causing the bluing pipes. I presume that's not normal?

Thanks for the help!

2009 V Star 650 Custom Midnight
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post #6 of 25 (permalink) Old 05-06-2015, 09:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Golanv View Post
I thought the AIS only caused popping if something wasn't tuned properly?

Does that K&N air filter cause enough of a lean condition where rejetting is necessary? Altho, if the plugs look good, I don't see why I would need to?

And....I'm still a little confused about what exactly is causing the bluing pipes. I presume that's not normal?

Thanks for the help!
I've never seen a set of chrome pipes that didn't go blue near the heads.. That's why a lot of the bikes you see have heat shields covering the pipes near the heads that are chromed so you don't see the blue..
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post #7 of 25 (permalink) Old 05-06-2015, 03:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Golanv View Post
I thought the AIS only caused popping if something wasn't tuned properly?

Does that K&N air filter cause enough of a lean condition where rejetting is necessary? Altho, if the plugs look good, I don't see why I would need to?

And....I'm still a little confused about what exactly is causing the bluing pipes. I presume that's not normal?

Thanks for the help!
the ais injects fresh air into the exhaust,the popping is caused by a lean condition,in a lean condition unburned fuel collects in the exhaust and gets ignited thru an open valve, i can't think what i read about it something like that.lol.
anyways you don't need to rejet just turn the pms screws out till the popping stops,quarter turn or so.
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post #8 of 25 (permalink) Old 05-06-2015, 06:00 PM
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Whats not being conveyed here is on the carb version 650 the PMS screws are capped from the factory. ( no tamper seal)

These caps Must be drilled out the gain access to the adjustments.
Not so easy to do unless you are very versed in how to do this.
I know from experience on my bike the adjustment can go way wrong
and end up making a carb useless. I had to buy a complete pair when changing my PMS settings due to one of the PMS screws being stripped
during the adjustment process. Very easy to strip out.

This epic fail cost me over $300.

These tamper seals are put in at the factory and mine just happened to be sealed so well the the threads on the PMS adjuster for the rear carb had residual resin or epoxy that dripped down inside and froze the screw in place. You could try to turn in but would not budge.
I stripped it out trying to change the setting.

I purchased a used pair of carbs and sold the old ones for parts.
Ever since everything has been fine.

2000 Vstar 650 Classic , Firethorn orange Metal flake Urethane, OEM tall Windshield, 47 Harley Tail light mod, progressive springs, hard bags painted to match w/chr. bullet accents Custom Modified rear rack/backrest, Cobra Modified exhaust w/ chrome Pencil tips, Hyper charger kit,
PRV 15, Riser mounted speakers, Chrome levers,Fringe grips, studded Leather bib with pocket, Billet Oil filter relocation kit , 3.5 PMS w/ stock pilots, mains- 122.5, Custom billet t signals
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post #9 of 25 (permalink) Old 05-06-2015, 07:22 PM
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http://www.mikuni.com/tg_backfires_in_exhaust.html here is a good explanation how a lean condition causes popping and can be controlled thru the idle circuit and adjusting the pms screw,it also says a supply of fresh air can increase popping like a exhaust leak or maybe an ais system.
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post #10 of 25 (permalink) Old 05-07-2015, 12:13 PM Thread Starter
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First of all, thanks guys for all of your responses!

Drilling the PMS plug doesn't sound like a lot of fun. If my bike isn't running lean, going from the condition of the plugs, would I even want to adjust the PMS?

Also, I understand that disabling the AIS isn't really an option with stock pipes, no? I'm almost getting the idea that I should just ignore the popping and bluing and keep riding it?

For what it's worth, turning up the idle does help quite a bit with the popping.

2009 V Star 650 Custom Midnight
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