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Thread: Carb sync

  1. #1
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    Carb sync

    Hi everyone
    Recently retired shop teacher with 7 motorcycles, 4 of them airheads. I am looking for a tech day or a 1 on 1 lesson to "tune up" my air heads. I am south of Boston and would like to learn the skills to tune up these bikes. Years ago I did this but have not done it in a long time. I do my tires, oils, brakes, etc but am a little timid with electronics and carburetors.
    My alternative is to drop each bike off at a shop. This takes lots of time delivering and picking up. I have tools and a nice garage and want to learn these skills again.
    Any help is appreciated.
    thanks
    Brian
    moa9842

  2. #2
    Liaison 20774's Avatar
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    Brian -

    There are a couple of threads in the Similar Pane below that are about carb synch for Airheads...see what you can learn there. I can only think of the Yankee Beemers club in your area. Gary will be along soon...maybe he can hook you up with someone in the club who knows Airheads.

    What are the years/models of Airheads? Are you looking for just carb synch or all things associated with tuning the bikes?
    Kurt -- Forum Liaison ---> Resources and Links Thread <---
    '78 R100/7 & '69 R69S & '52 R25/2
    mine-ineye-deatheah-pielayah-jooa-kalayus. oolah-minane-hay-meeriah-kal-oyus-algay-a-thaykin', buddy!

  3. #3
    Airmarshal-IL James.A's Avatar
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    One thing you could do would be to join the Airheads Beemer Club. Check out airheads.org , sign up ($25/yr), and get in touch with the Airmarshal for your state. That person should be able to direct you to find what you seek.
    1973 R75/5

  4. #4
    Liaison 20774's Avatar
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    James -

    I first checked the latest Airmail and didn't see any upcoming Tech Sessions in his area. But certainly, joining would open things up. As they say in the ABC, open up your garage, include a "magic" ice chest and some BBQ, and they will come!
    Kurt -- Forum Liaison ---> Resources and Links Thread <---
    '78 R100/7 & '69 R69S & '52 R25/2
    mine-ineye-deatheah-pielayah-jooa-kalayus. oolah-minane-hay-meeriah-kal-oyus-algay-a-thaykin', buddy!

  5. #5
    Registered User ebeeby's Avatar
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    I understand being "intimidated". But don't be. It is a simple procedure (I prefer the "shorting" method) once you have done it once. I too would recommend joining the Airheads and going to a tech day to see it done.
    1973 R75/5

  6. #6
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    Carb sync

    Quote Originally Posted by ebeeby View Post
    I understand being "intimidated". But don't be. It is a simple procedure (I prefer the "shorting" method) once you have done it once. I too would recommend joining the Airheads and going to a tech day to see it done.
    Hi
    Been a Moa member for 40 years. I'm also an airhead and a yankee beemer. I'm not active with any of the clubs. Done my share of cross county trips, Daytona, and commuted to college in New Mexico from Boston many times. So now that I'm retired I would like to get bikes in tip top shape for some long rides again. Bikes look great with new batteries and tires but need tuning. Will look for air Marshall and tech days.
    Thanks
    Brian
    9842

  7. #7
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    Carb sync bikes

    Hi
    The airheads I have are
    Blue 73 lwb r75/5 w krouser bags
    Green 73 lwb r75/5
    Curry 72 r75/5
    Blue 88 r100rt
    Other bikes are
    Blue 90 k75rt
    Ducati 2005 red st3
    HD road king classic black 2005
    Harley and Ducati are electronic and new enough that they can get serviced anywhere. K bike is serviced and getting sold. So the air heads are my concern now. It would be nice to find an independent mechanic but dropping off and picking up at a shop will take more time than if I learned to do tune-ups myself. Keep me posted if you find an independent mechanic or a tech day near Quincy Mass.
    thanks again
    Brian
    9842

  8. #8
    Gerard jagarra's Avatar
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    The latest copy of our BMW ON magazine has a great article by Matt Parkhouse on syncing carburetors. Prompted me in making the shorting rods so I could try his method out. For now I just did it by ear and feel of the exhaust pulses.
    1994 R1100RS-(5/93)-,1974 R90/6 built 9/73,--1964 Triumph T100--1986 Honda XL600R

  9. #9
    Airmarshal-IL James.A's Avatar
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    Great suggestion jagarra. Matt Parkhouse is a top shelf guru and advisor. That article will go a long way toward helping you to understand how that method is practiced. The shorting 1 cylinder method is as good as any balancing device. I use a twinmax, but I'm not an advocate for any single method.

    Kurt, you are correct about the skimpy tech day schedule. That's a shame.

    9842, if you are still receiving the ABC's "Airmail" newsletter, the name of your state's Airmarshal will be on the table inside the back cover page. That guy should be able to connect you with a local member who can give guidance.
    1973 R75/5

  10. #10
    Bluenoser
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    If you are experienced and know what you are doing the shorting method works with no issues on the older airheads that had point ignitions or no vacuum port on the carbs, but if you have the newer ones with electronic ignition, be careful. If you fail to keep the one plug shorted you will fry the ignition. Shorting the plug will work, but if you have gauges - use them.

    With that many bikes, I would invest in some kind of sync gauges, Carbtune or Twin Max or homemade for that matter. Much easier and a lot more accurate than the shorting method. Much easier to see that both carbs are pulling together.
    1995 R100Rt with Kenna Sidecar, 1998 VT1100T

  11. #11
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    carb sync

    Hi again
    I used spokes and the short method years ago and it worked fine. Now though, one of my /5's has electronic ignition and I believe the 88 rt is electronic as well. I'm told not to use the short method because it will damage the electronics.
    I read Matts article (I read it every month) and still feel I need help.
    So I'm going to study the anatomy of the Bings and how to set them up.
    I'm also going to get in touch with the closest air Marshall to see if they can suggest a tech day or an independent mechanic.
    Thanks
    Brian
    9842

  12. #12
    Liaison 20774's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 9842 View Post
    I'm told not to use the short method because it will damage the electronics.
    I don't believe this is correct....maybe someone exercising an extreme abundance of caution. As mentioned above, as long as you do it properly, there is no issue with shorting plugs with an electronic ignition. Heck, even if you do the plug shorting wrong with a standard ignition system, you can still damage the coils. What you want to do is provide a firm alternate path of the spark energy to ground...that's through the screwdriver blade to the engine fins. It's really pretty straight forward.
    Kurt -- Forum Liaison ---> Resources and Links Thread <---
    '78 R100/7 & '69 R69S & '52 R25/2
    mine-ineye-deatheah-pielayah-jooa-kalayus. oolah-minane-hay-meeriah-kal-oyus-algay-a-thaykin', buddy!

  13. #13
    Registered User m_stock10506's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 9842 View Post
    Hi everyone
    Recently retired shop teacher with 7 motorcycles, 4 of them airheads. I am looking for a tech day or a 1 on 1 lesson to "tune up" my air heads. I am south of Boston and would like to learn the skills to tune up these bikes. Years ago I did this but have not done it in a long time. I do my tires, oils, brakes, etc but am a little timid with electronics and carburetors.
    Brian
    moa9842
    Aside from getting in touch with a local Airhead to look over your shoulder the first time, I would suggest you look at You Tube for Chris Harris. He is very foul mouthed and sometimes his methods may be questionable, but he provides good Airhead and Oilhead procedures. Look for his videos on valve adjustments and carb syncing. I'll try to pull them out and post them later.
    Michael Stock, Trinity, NC
    R1100RT, R100, R60/6

  14. #14
    Liaison 20774's Avatar
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    A collection of videos, including those mentioned by Chris Harris, are here:

    https://forums.bmwmoa.org/showthread...y-Chris-Harris
    Kurt -- Forum Liaison ---> Resources and Links Thread <---
    '78 R100/7 & '69 R69S & '52 R25/2
    mine-ineye-deatheah-pielayah-jooa-kalayus. oolah-minane-hay-meeriah-kal-oyus-algay-a-thaykin', buddy!

  15. #15
    Day Dreaming ... happy wanderer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 9842 View Post
    Hi again
    I used spokes and the short method years ago and it worked fine. Now though, one of my /5's has electronic ignition and I believe the 88 rt is electronic as well. I'm told not to use the short method because it will damage the electronics.
    I read Matts article (I read it every month) and still feel I need help.
    So I'm going to study the anatomy of the Bings and how to set them up.
    I'm also going to get in touch with the closest air Marshall to see if they can suggest a tech day or an independent mechanic.
    Thanks
    Brian
    9842
    As long as the plug is shorted you will not damage the electronic ignition unit. Posted this before but can't find it right now. Here's my el cheapo find one in any desk solution that requires a paper clip, some pliers and a wee bit of bending:



    MJM - BeeCeeBeemers Motorcycle Club Vancouver B.C.
    '81 R80G/S, '82 R100RS, '00 R1100RT

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