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Kiv Cornelius Do not under-estimate the ability of the stock Keihin CV carburetor to produce good horsepower. The stock CV40 carburetor has a venturi diameter of 38.5mm. Properly tuned, a CV carburetor is capable of supporting 80+ horsepower in modified engines. A stock bike of 1340cc (80 CID) can develop up to 64 horsepower with a well-tuned and modified CV carburetor. These steps are similar for a Tc88 1450/1550. Information for this article was gleaned from the following sources: http://www.nightrider.com/biketech/hd_cv_mods.htm http://www.silvercrow.com/cvcarb.htm Maurice Riggins (past article on the Sportster list) My personal experience! 1. REMOVE THE CARBURETOR Remove the carburetor as described in the service manual for your model bike. You might get away with leaving the throttle cables connected. It is much easier to remove the carburetor and use a workbench. Leave the choke cable hooked to the carburetor and disconnect the pull-handle end, taking the entire choke cable/carburetor assembly with the carburetor. It is faster to cut the fuel line hose off rather than trying to save it. 2. MODIFY THE IDLE MIXTURE ADJUSTMENT The aluminum plug covering the idle mixture adjusting screw needs to be removed. Turn the carburetor over and locate the plug toward the rear of the carburetor, in back of the float bowl. Using about a 1/16" drill bit, carefully drill a hole through the small plug. If the plug does not fall out while drilling, remove the drill bit. Carefully insert a small self-tapping sheet metal screw into the plug. This will allow enough grip to remove the plug by pulling on the self-tapping screw with a pair of pliers. Underneath you will find a slotted screw. Turn this screw clockwise until it is GENTLY seated. Over tightening this screw can damage the carburetor and needle. Back the idle mixture screw 2 1/2 full turns. This provides a starting point for tuning. 3. SLIDE MODIFICATIONS Remove the top of the carburetor (slide vacuum chamber cover) being careful to loosen the throttle linkage stop plate. There is a spring under the top cover, so hold it with a finger until all screws are loose. Holding the carburetor upright,
place 1 (approx. Jetting Notes: Be sure to use jets numbered for the CV carburetor! The HD part numbers listed are correct. Using a flat blade screwdriver. The second hole is off center. If you did not get thin brass . Inside the slide you will see the plastic spring seat. The jets are brass parts that are screwed into an aluminum body. These two items can be removed by turning the slide over and pouring the parts into you hand. Additional jet sizes and jet needles are listed below. making sure the washers remain in place. DO NOT file too deep or you will cut through the wall of the slide creating a hole. Drilling note: Rather than risk ruining the slide by drilling it. Do not over-tighten the new jets when installing them. pn# 27728-99 is suggested. Remove the float bowl by removing the four screws. This is the edge OPPOSITE the side the vacuum hole was on (the front). Carefully remove the fuel bowl. richening the low RPM fuel mixture. RE-ASSEMBLE THE CARBURETOR If you use the OEM needle. the main jet will be replaced with a #165 jet (pn# 27116-88). Keep the shavings away from the rest of the carburetor. These washers will raise the jet needle taper. Replace the float bowl. On the bottom of the slide are two holes. These parts are needed to reassemble the carburetor. another option is to use a different vacuum piston spring. 4. If that doesn’t work put the original back in and then drill it! Another optional modification that can be done is to chamfer or “radius” the front bottom edge of the slide. the main jet will be replaced with a jet 10 larger than the OEM. 5. Place the jet needle into the slide.050" or 1/16" thick) of the small brass washers over the long end of the needle jet. This is the vacuum port.remove the cover and spring. This smoothes the airflow. This hole needs to be drilled to 1/8". carefully placing the accelerator pump rod into its rubber boot. plus a TC88 may use a #5 or #10 larger main jet depending on engine modifications. You may need to take some fine (400 to 600) emery paper and polish the chamfer a bit if the file has left grooves or roughness. If you use the XL needle (pn# 27094-88). Make sure this hole is a clean straight hole. The slide/diaphragm assembly can now be removed. The 130/210 SE CV44mm spring. DO NOT file the flat parts that contact the carburetor body as this could cause improper operation. thus ruining the slide. Under the spring seat is the jet needle. REPLACE JETS Turn the carburetor over so the bottom is facing upward. Use a fine flat metal file to CAREFULLY smooth this edge from the 90 degree to a “rounded” 45 degree. If you use the OEM needle. . The center hole is for the jet needle. Set the slide aside for now. Remove any burrs that exist and clean the slide. for a 1340cc replace the stock #42 slow jet with a #45 (pn# 2717089). or for a TC88 the #45 with a #48 jet (pn#27165-90).
Be careful not to over-tighten the choke cable-mounting nut. The diaphragm frequently has the appearance of being too large to fit into the groove. About 30 seconds later. As the bike comes up to . If you find any. The carburetor is not as lean as the factory settings. Start the bike. This speeds up the warm-up time and also allows a feel for the improvement to throttle response from the modifications. but will not accept any throttle. making re-assembly tricky. If you are using the XLH needle. Remember to replace the vacuum hose from the VOES to the top rear of the carburetor. If the engine is warm. Prior to final adjustments the engine may not idle properly. a single small washer of up to 1/8" thick can be used. This is a common source of problems after carburetor modifications are performed. Connect the fuel line hose to the fuel petcock. DO NOT follow the owner's manual directions for cold starting. make sure the hose is connected. The throttle lock can be used for this purpose during initial adjustments. place the jet needle into the slide without using any washers. Carefully place the edges of the diaphragm into the groove around the top of the carburetor. Place the carburetor slide into the carburetor body. Assembly Tricks for the diaphragm: The diaphragm is easy to misalign or pinch. Install the slide spring and the carburetor top being careful not to misalign or pinch the diaphragm. Replace the spring seat into the slide and over the jet needle. The modifications made to your bike should allow it to run well enough for a sedate test run around the block. use half or no choke at all. pulling on the edges to stretch the diaphragm a bit. as the plastic will break fairly easily. A damaged diaphragm will have the symptoms of the engine being able to idle. WARMING UP THE BIKE Warm the bike up to full operating temperature. directing the fuel line and choke cable into position as you move the carburetor into place. the entire slide/diaphragm assembly must be replaced. If you think the diaphragm is damaged. 7. You can "wiggle" the top and feel when the diaphragm is properly located. Replace the carburetor.washers. The new procedure is as follows: If the engine is cold. 6. The repeated up and down movement of the diaphragm causes it to stretch. pull choke out all the way. Checking all the work to make sure screws and hoses are properly installed. Place the fuel line on the carburetor before you place it on the bike. Try using the cap to position the diaphragm. If you have a late model bike with the vacuum line connected to the fuel petcock. It will allow you to evenly push the diaphragm into the groove. Letting the bike idle for 15 minutes to warm up is not desirable. adjusting choke to reduce the fast idle to a reasonable speed. check for any pinholes with a bright light behind the rubber. PUT THE CARBURETOR BACK ON THE BIKE The carburetor is now ready to be installed back on the engine. Make sure the washer is the smallest that can be found. push the choke all the way in and use the throttle to keep the bike idling while warming up.
adjustments to the idle mixture and idle speed can be performed. .proper operating temperature.
Now turn the idle mixture screw outwards until the engine begins to run smoothly. perhaps nicely. counterclockwise) exactly two full turns. open the throttle slightly. turn the idle mixture screw inward (clockwise) slowly until the engine starts to stumble. If the engine will not idle on its own during this procedure. adjusting the idle stop screw as necessary to maintain proper idle speed. 3. Leave the idle SPEED screw (top right side of the carb looking at it above the air cleaner) where it was before.) 1. 2. you have your idle mixture right. Blip the throttle a time or two and observe the results. perhaps not. I think it provides the most accurate setting for the transition between the bottom circuits. Seems kind of complicated at first. then turn it out (open. The engine should be idling. but if you read through the whole procedure before starting it will make sense. Make a mental note of the position of the clock position of the screwdriver. With a flat blade screwdriver. raise the idle by adjusting the idle set screw until it does.8. the idle mixture screw should be between 2 and 3 turns out. ADJUSTING IDLE MIXTURE Method #1: 1. Under normal circumstances. Start the engine. If the engine responds quickly with a gratifying blast and no backfiring through the carburetor. If backfiring occurs through the carburetor then adjust the idle mixture screw out another 1/8 to 1/4 turn. Method #2: (This is the method I like. Once the engine is fully warm (rear rocker cover is hot to the touch). With engine warmed up and at idle. turn the idle MIXTURE screw (the one you drilled the cap off) full in (clockwise) G E N T L Y until it seats). With a flat blade or Phillips screwdriver. fully release the throttle lock and make sure the throttle is fully closed. 2. . and if you must do so to keep the engine running. low RPM fuel mixture leading to poor gas mileage and carbon buildup in the combustion chamber. turn the idle SPEED screw in (clockwise) about two full turns until the engine is idling fast. Once the engine has started push the choke in about 1/2 way and then wait about 2 minutes. the star shaped screw below the right switch housing. Then push the choke in all the way. You can keep it there with the throttle lock. Adjusting the idle mixture screw out to far results in an overly rich.
7. the mixture will become lean and the engine speed will start to decrease. Idle Speed note: The proper idle speed for TC and EVO Twin engines is 9001000 RPM. The following takes a good ear for engine speed. Fumbling around with the wrong screwdriver usually results in burned knuckles. It may sound good. As the idle MIXTURE screw is turned in clockwise. This allows the screwdriver to get past the various obstructions that exist between you and the idle mixture screw 9. your . and then the engine speed will starts to drop as the mixture gets too rich. but improper oiling will contribute to engine overheating while idling in traffic and premature engine failures. insufficient oil will be pumped. you must be in fourth or fifth gear and running fairly high RPM (4000+) then open the throttle all the way to the throttle stop. As it is turned back out counterclockwise the engine speed will increase and stay there for awhile as you continue turning out. If you do not have access to a dyno facility. If it does. 5. and let it idle a minute or so to stabilize. With a flat blade screwdriver turn the idle MIXTURE screw in (clockwise) *gently* until it fully seats. flat blade or #1 Phillips screwdriver should be used. noting the feel of the bike. Resist the temptation to lower the idle excessively. turn the idle MIXTURE screw back out the two full turns and go back to step 3. If it seems to accelerate some when you let off the 1/8. Make sure the screwdriver works before the engine is started. This is an easy way to set it without a tach. The engine should not die. restart the engine.4. FINE TUNING The details of carburetor tweaking and plug reading are a very involved subject. It will result in the idle speed being a little high. Now turn the idle MIXTURE screw out (counterclockwise) exactly two full turns out (counterclockwise). 6. increasing the idle speed setting (in clockwise another turn). If the idle speed is too low. which will give more oil to lubricate the engine. To adjust the idle speed. The oiling systems need better than 700 RPM to work properly. Now the idle mixture is set correctly. here is a very basic guide that will get the adjustments close. To test the main jetting. Note the points where the engine speed started to drop and set the idle MIXTURE screw in the middle of that higher speed range. flat blade screwdriver about 3" long should be used to adjust the idle mixture screw. Now turn the idle SPEED screw out (counterclockwise) just until the engine dies. a long. so you may want to refer to a higher authority after this. Tricks of the trade: A small. The idle speed is set correctly. Immediately let off the throttle about 1/8 turn and note the feel of the bike.
Plug reading is as much an art as a science. less than 80 MPH) you are too rich. making sure the plugs are a nice light tan color is good enough. Do some riding. and engine damage will soon follow if proper steps are not taken richen the mixture. Too light. which exercises either low speed or main jetting. and then stop immediately shutting down the engine before it is at idle speed. Don't read the plugs until the fine-tuning has been done and then make sure you use new plugs. .main jet is too lean. Checking the plugs this way will provide the most accurate reading. or worse yet. this decreases your gas and performance but will not harm your engine. Adjust your main jetting accordingly by increasing or decreasing the jet size by 5. Use your common sense and seat of the pants feel and you will get close enough to do plug reads.e. If your plugs are black you are too rich. bone white you are too lean. If it hesitates or the top speed is poor (i. For most street riders. taking years of experience to understand what the plugs are really telling us about the engine.
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