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Carb Cleaning Tutorial
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Carb Cleaning Tutorial - January 18, 2013, 01:21 PM

Disclaimer:
This is not the beez-kneez end all to carb cleaning tutorials. It's a general picture-guide to help you on your way. There are certain things that are taken as given when working on bikes and if you don't know what they are, you should get some experience before you tackle something like this. So, please take that in to consideration before you do this.

This is on a 1998 Yamaha YZF600R. YOUR BIKE WILL BE DIFFERENT! Generally speaking, there are a few things that are particular to each bike but a carb is a carb, is a carb. I picked the YZF600R because it has almost all of the modern components of the most modern carburated bikes, such as Throttle position sensor, coolant lines and diaphragms. Flux Capacitors were not added until 2005.


Let's start here: I decided to omit the "How to take off your seat, tank and air box" portion because if you can't get this far on your own you probably should not attempt this.

Organization and Cleanliness are KEY in a successful carb cleaning. Make sure you have everything ready BEFORE you start:


Once you get the tank and airbox off, you will see something like this:


It's a good idea to take off the throat stacks (grey things sticking up) while the carbs are still attached to the bike.



Loosen the carb boot hose-clamps and then pull the carbs out of their boots. It's best to grab the carbs from the top and try to "rock" them out of their boots. Make sure the boots are REALLY loose.
It was hard to get my camera under there, so I had to take a picture of the boots after I took off the carbs.


Remove the throttle cables, coolant lines, fuel lines and vacuum lines from the set of carbs.


Some bikes have the idle adjustment screw directly on the carbs. This one does not. you have to find where it's attached and remove it. Usually, it's a U-Shaped bracket and you can just push it out through the U of the opening.


Drain the Carbs. There is always a screw on the bottom that you can use to drain the float bowls.



Remove all of the auxiliary components from the carb set. For this bike that includes the coolant line and fuel lines:



The TPS only needs to be removed if you are dunking the carbs. I am dunking these, so this is how it's done. First, score a mark on the carbs and the TPS so you know where it came off. If you don't do that, you will spend a good amount of time having to re-tune them. Make sure you score them. Don't just use a sharpie cuz' it can come off in the dunk tank.


Usually the TPS is held in with "tamper-proof" bolts. You can buy the cheap ones at Harbor Freight for right around 5 bucks. When you remove the TPS note the position of the inner workings and take a picture if you must.
More often than not, there will be some sort of paint in the bolts. You've gotta clean that stuff out before you attempt to put your socket on there:


Take off the diaphragm covers by removing the screws. It's important that you do the top-end first so you won't be tempted to put too much pressure on the bottom end later. Just take out the screws and expose the diaphragm and spring.



Once you take out the diaphragm, you will notice a needle sticking out of the bottom. Every carb system is a bit different. All of them the needle comes out of the top of the diaphragm. Some have intricate systems of screws and washers and springs. Whatever the case, pay close and careful attention to what comes out and in what order it comes out. Lay it out in the order in which it was removed and take a picture.
This one's not that bad, but you get the idea:


Next, flip the carbs over. You'll notice that since you removed the top end first, they sit nice and flush on your workbench. Good thinking! Remove the float bowl screws: MAKE SURE YOU USE THE CORRECT SCREWDRIVER!! Some bikes have phillips head screws and if you don't use just the right size driver you will bugger them up then pay me $5/per to take them out. So, be careful and make sure you apply plenty of downward pressure on the screws to avoid stripping them out. This is why you took off the top end first. If you tried to put too much pressure from the top end and you didn't have the bowls on, then you could crack the inner molds of the carburetor.


It's obvious from this picture that these carbs are pretty well buggered. But, this is what it will look like once you take off the bowls:



Remove the float. This particular one is held in by a screw:


Remove the slow jet. Sometimes she's hidden like this one is.


When removing the main jet, it's important that you use a screwdriver that is just slightly smaller than the slot. If you use too small a screwdriver, you will crack the jet:


Usually, there is a main jet keeper. Take this out as well: Sometimes you loosen both when you try and take out the main jet. Make sure you separate them by using a wrench to hold on to the keeper.


Remove the float needle set retaining screw: Some bikes don't have this screw. If that's the case look at the microfiche for the bike and see if it's able to be taken out. Sometimes they are pressed in:


Use a pair of Duck-Nose pliers to remove the needle set. NEVER put the needles on the inside of the set. If you squeeze to hard while you're removing the needles set, you will have to replace it, so be careful. Notice how nasty the O-Ring is?


Now that the carbs are empty, it looks something like this:



Now it's time to break everything down:
Remove the O-Ring from the needle set and lower screen with a small, pointy object:



Take all the inner that is made of metal and put it in a jar with carb cleaner. If you have an ultrasonic cleaner you can drop it in there (with a cover on) and it works wonders.


If you don't do it this way, use some carb cleaner and compressed air to blast out all dirt and gunk. The slow jet is the biggest pain in the arse. You should be able to see light through it. Sometimes compressed air does not work and you have to get mean with the bitches. Use pliers to take out a few bristles from a wire brush.


Use one of the bristles to punch the slow jet out:


Next, it's time to clean the carbs: If you have an ultrasonic cleaner then use it. 15 minutes is good for moderately dirty carbs. The solution that I use is O-Ring and rubber safe but you still can't let it sit for days in this solution.
If you don't have an ultrasonic cleaner, it can still be done. Use B12 Chem Tool to blast out all the different ports and jets. Then, use compressed air.



While the carbs are soaking it's a good idea to clean some of the other stuff that you can't dunk. For the float needle, put some rubber-safe solution on a paper towl and rub the rubber on. Then wipe all the gunk off the sides as well:


There is a small springed tab at the top. You need to make sure that it moves in and out freely. If it does not, you have to work it back out with small tools and cleaner. Otherwise replace the float needles:


Once you pull the carbs out of the dunk, you won't recognize them. They look amazing! Use compressed air to blow out any excessive stuff in every hole you can find. Jet, slow jet, needle set, vacuum lines, air lines and EVERYTHING! Also blow air through the jets themselves.



Reassembly:
It's a good idea to use grease on anything with rubber EXCEPT your float needle. Grease acts like glue to hold gaskets in place and makes O-rings slip right in to position. it's good stuff. I use BelRay waterproof. Seriously, just spend the $20 to get a gasket/O-ring set. It's so worth it in the end.


It's important to know how much pressure to put on these jets when you're putting them back in. They are easy to crack and/or strip so be cautious.
It should look something like these:


Before you put the bowls on, hook up a hose to the fuel inlets. Blow air in to it and make sure nothing is coming out of the float needles or anywhere else for that matter. Using a soapy solution spray at all the fuel ports, fuel lines, the float needle and needle sets. Any bubbles will indicate a leak.


When putting the diaphragms back in, be sure that they line up. Usually there are little tabs on the rubber that mate up with recessions in the aluminum. These do not, however. They only go in one way. Be sure not to pinch the rubber at the top when putting the caps back in. Use the picture that you took earlier as a guide.


After you get the caps back in press the slugs up and down. You should hear a sucking sound and when released they should come back down at a moderate pace. If they snap back down really fast then there is a problem and you probably pinched them when you put the caps back on.


Reattach all the components such as fuel lines, coolant lines and TPS. Make sure to take note of the marks you made on the TPS.

Before you put the carbs back in, put some grease on the boots. Your life will be easier for it.

Last step:
Take an opportunity to advertise your business:


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January 18, 2013, 01:30 PM

Curious, what sized ultrasonic cleaner are you using to hold 4 carbs?

Other than that, nice writeup with pictures. That took some time. Kudos to you sir.


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January 18, 2013, 01:37 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by MudDawg View Post
Curious, what sized ultrasonic cleaner are you using to hold 4 carbs?

Other than that, nice writeup with pictures. That took some time. Kudos to you sir.
6gal should... Chris bought the size that would do a bank of 4 carbs (and I bought the same model as him)

edit it's a 25 liter model

19.5 x 11.8 x 7.9


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Last edited by jar944; January 18, 2013 at 01:49 PM..
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January 18, 2013, 01:44 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by MudDawg View Post
Curious, what sized ultrasonic cleaner are you using to hold 4 carbs?

Other than that, nice writeup with pictures. That took some time. Kudos to you sir.
Nuthin' gets past you, does it?! The one that I have is not big enough to do them all at once. I do half and half. You found my dirty little secret.


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January 18, 2013, 01:55 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by jar944 View Post
6gal should... Chris bought the size that would do a bank of 4 carbs (and I bought the same model as him)

edit it's a 25 liter model

19.5 x 11.8 x 7.9
Yeah, I figure I can get away with a smaller sized one. I like SCCM's approach, one side and then the other. That would work fine for me.


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January 18, 2013, 01:55 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by superchickencornermonster View Post
Nuthin' gets past you, does it?! The one that I have is not big enough to do them all at once. I do half and half. You found my dirty little secret.
You dirty ho you.



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January 18, 2013, 01:59 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by MudDawg View Post
Yeah, I figure I can get away with a smaller sized one. I like SCCM's approach, one side and then the other. That would work fine for me.
Bigger is better... I throw fork tubes, shock bodies, engine cases..ect into mine. It's great for cleaning all kinds of things.


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January 18, 2013, 02:09 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by jar944 View Post
Bigger is better... I throw fork tubes, shock bodies, engine cases..ect into mine. It's great for cleaning all kinds of things.

I was thinking about engine cases. But the $700 price for it seems a tad steep.

If it were $400 I would probably pop for it now. (I have my tool storage problems solved. Bike toys solved, now I just need to pull apart engines for rebuilding. As well as carbs, suspension, etc.) So it's reasonable.

Oh wait, I think I need another bench in the basement.

And a Duke690. And a KTM350F, and....


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January 18, 2013, 02:20 PM

I'm looking for a decent US cleaner too. Preferably something stainless but only 2.5-5 liter and less than $200.


Quote:
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My wife wants to get LASIK or a boob job

She asked my opinion

I told her I have no vested interest in making her eyesight better
Quote:
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Im not really fast enough to notice a difference between tires. I buy the kind thats black and made out of rubber.
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January 18, 2013, 02:35 PM

The one in these pics is about $220 new.


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January 18, 2013, 03:09 PM

What brand is that? I can't tell from the pics.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Fitz View Post
My wife wants to get LASIK or a boob job

She asked my opinion

I told her I have no vested interest in making her eyesight better
Quote:
Originally Posted by alex View Post
Im not really fast enough to notice a difference between tires. I buy the kind thats black and made out of rubber.
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January 18, 2013, 04:03 PM

here is a tip i learned the hard way: watch the temp on the US, over 150-160 and you start doing bad things to brass..

I keep it to 135 now


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January 18, 2013, 05:33 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by jar944 View Post
here is a tip i learned the hard way: watch the temp on the US, over 150-160 and you start doing bad things to brass..

I keep it to 135 now

Pictures please!



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July 2, 2013, 01:47 PM

THis is an awesome write up! WIll be using this on the Monster I just picked up!
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September 25, 2013, 03:21 PM

fantastic detailed info super+1
thnx
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