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Old 05-29-2020, 03:01 PM
Phare Est Phare Est is offline
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Cylinders 2 and 3 not firing

I just took my '81 XS11 out of storage and quickly discovered that cylinders 2 and 3 weren't firing (the bike doesn't start at all). I removed the spark plugs and inserted them back into the caps to check for a spark (by placing th plugs against the head or the frame). The was no spark coming from the coil going to cylinders 2 and 3. When I switched the plug-ins feeding the coils, the plugs for cylinders 2 and 3 were now producing a spark but the ones for cylinders 1 and 4 were not. I checked the plug-in wires, lead wires and plug caps with an ohmmeter and everything is within speck according to the manual. Hence, the coils and the plugs are probably not the issue.

The next step was to test the ignition unit (TID14-04). I swapped it with a spare one I had lying around that was working perfectly late last season. No luck : the same problem persisted.

As for my battery, it's brand new and has 13.2-13.3 volts when fully charged.

Is there any way to check the resistance on the pick-up coil wires? Could the problem lie elsewhere (grounds? relay switches?)

Thanks for the help !
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Old 05-29-2020, 04:20 PM
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Bonz Bonz is offline
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You switch the primary leads and the problem switches cylinders. The only thing that you changed was which coil is firing which plugs. The coil is the only variable at this point. Everything before the coil and everything after the coil works when you swap the leads.

I may have missed something but it sure sounds like a coil.
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Old 05-29-2020, 05:50 PM
Phare Est Phare Est is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bonz View Post
You switch the primary leads and the problem switches cylinders. The only thing that you changed was which coil is firing which plugs. The coil is the only variable at this point. Everything before the coil and everything after the coil works when you swap the leads.

I may have missed something but it sure sounds like a coil.
Actually, I switched the plug-ins (one has red and white wires while the other has red and orange wires). I did clean the terminals with a liberal amount of electrical contact cleaner. Is it worth testing the plug-ins coming out of the harness with a voltmeter?
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Old 05-29-2020, 07:09 PM
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LOL, I had a brain fart in just switching those leads going into the coils wouldn't be the test. Cutting up too much brush out in the yard in the hot Colorado Sun this afternoon!

Pick up coil wires coming out of the unit can be a problem. Because the plate rotates with the vacuum advance feature those wires crack internally. They may look good externally but get down where they come out of the unit and pull on the wires if the coating stretches then you know you have a wire that's compromised.
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Old 05-30-2020, 12:40 AM
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Radioguylogs Radioguylogs is offline
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Based on your testing, it is almost assuredly the pick-up coils/pick-up coil wiring
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'84 Honda V65 Magna 48k miles (parts bike)
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Old 05-30-2020, 09:32 AM
Phare Est Phare Est is offline
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Originally Posted by Radioguylogs View Post
Based on your testing, it is almost assuredly the pick-up coils/pick-up coil wiring
Thanks Radioguylogs. I changed the pick-up coil wires two years ago: looks like I'll have to go through all of them again. I did install a new neutral sensor switch (https://www.partzilla.com/product/ya...KM-82540-00-00) on the bike over the winter. Could that also be the culprit?
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Old 05-30-2020, 08:42 PM
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If a safety feature was locking out IGN, then all the cylinders would be dead.

Can't be the neutral sensor switch.
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'79 XS1100SF 20k miles
'80 XS1100SG 42k miles
'81 XS1100H Venturer 35k miles
'79 XS750SF 15k miles
'84 Honda V65 Magna ? miles
'84 Honda V65 Magna 48k miles (parts bike)
'86 Yamaha VMAX 5k miles

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'79 XS750SF 22k miles
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Old 06-02-2020, 12:53 PM
Phare Est Phare Est is offline
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Smile

The issue is finally resolved. I opened up the wire loom coming out of the pick up coil and running along the engine. Two of the five wires had broken off the crimp connectors. I'm pretty sure it happened when I pulled on that loom while installing the neutral sensor switch. Anyway, I changed all of the crimp connectors and made sure they were properly heat shrunk. All cylinders are firing again 🙂.
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  #9  
Old 06-03-2020, 01:30 AM
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Radioguylogs Radioguylogs is offline
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Thumbs up

Congratulations, and thanks for the report!
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_________
'79 XS1100SF 20k miles
'80 XS1100SG 42k miles
'81 XS1100H Venturer 35k miles
'79 XS750SF 15k miles
'84 Honda V65 Magna ? miles
'84 Honda V65 Magna 48k miles (parts bike)
'86 Yamaha VMAX 5k miles

Previous
'68 Motoguzzi 600cc
'79 XS750SF 22k miles
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  #10  
Old 06-03-2020, 07:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phare Est View Post
The issue is finally resolved. I opened up the wire loom coming out of the pick up coil and running along the engine. Two of the five wires had broken off the crimp connectors. I'm pretty sure it happened when I pulled on that loom while installing the neutral sensor switch. Anyway, I changed all of the crimp connectors and made sure they were properly heat shrunk. All cylinders are firing again 🙂.
Good find and good trouble shooting my friend!
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