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Author Topic: '79 Bullet 350 Start Issues  (Read 594 times)

arozanski

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'79 Bullet 350 Start Issues
« on: January 04, 2013, 04:38:10 PM »
Hi all,
I have a '79 Bullet 350, I bought it in fall of 2011, not running. The PO had removed the timing cover, supposedly to clean inside, and messed up the timing. I bought the bike, knowing this, and proceeded to reset things as best I could. Between not having much time, and some mechanical issues, I have not really been able to try starting it until lately.

When kicking it over, it feels like the kickstarter is slipping, although I hear compression coming out on the exhaust stroke. When installing the timing cover, I noticed a distinct difference in how the engine rotated when using the kickstarter, when the timing cover bolts were slightly loose, and when I tightened them (a quarter turn was enough to effect the change). I have left the bolts slightly loose (the cover is sealed against the block, but not terribly tight).

I thought the clutch may be too loose, but even with the cable disconnected, there is no difference. I know it has other issues (someone put an electronic ignition on it, and did not do a very clean install). Right now, I just want it to feel 'right' when kicking it over. My Dnepr sidecar rig has distinct feeling when kicking (compression/exhaust strokes), but the Bullet is 'smooth', if that makes sense.

Sorry for the long post, any help/insight is appreciated.

Forgot the mileage: it has around 1600 km on it.
« Last Edit: January 04, 2013, 04:45:08 PM by arozanski »

ace.cafe

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Re: '79 Bullet 350 Start Issues
« Reply #1 on: January 04, 2013, 04:54:56 PM »
Well, I have no way of knowing what your valve timing is.
But I can tell you that you need to re-set your camshaft end play by using the proper gasket thickness and the appropriate thrust washers on the ends of the shafts. This is indicated by the fact that the engine rotation gets stiff when you tighten the timing cover.

As for the compression, who knows?
Try doing a compression test.

arozanski

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Re: '79 Bullet 350 Start Issues
« Reply #2 on: January 04, 2013, 05:12:38 PM »
Well, I have no way of knowing what your valve timing is.
But I can tell you that you need to re-set your camshaft end play by using the proper gasket thickness and the appropriate thrust washers on the ends of the shafts. This is indicated by the fact that the engine rotation gets stiff when you tighten the timing cover.

As for the compression, who knows?
Try doing a compression test.

I lined up the dots on the cams and crank. There were no washers on the ends of the cams (or in the recess in the cover). Missing? How many different gaskets are there for this? Thanks!

ace.cafe

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Re: '79 Bullet 350 Start Issues
« Reply #3 on: January 04, 2013, 05:31:51 PM »
There are several gaskets available for the timing cover.
You need the one that was originally on there.
If you don't have it, then you have to do the camshaft end-float procedure.

It might be a good idea at this time to get a comprehensive service manual.
I sounds to me like you are going to need it.

arozanski

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Re: '79 Bullet 350 Start Issues
« Reply #4 on: January 04, 2013, 05:47:53 PM »
There are several gaskets available for the timing cover.
You need the one that was originally on there.
If you don't have it, then you have to do the camshaft end-float procedure.

It might be a good idea at this time to get a comprehensive service manual.
I sounds to me like you are going to need it.

At this point, I do not know what was on there originally, I believe I now have a bit of a basket case. I definitely agree on the service manual, what is a good source to get one?

Do all of the RE 350s of this vintage have the spring washers on the cams? If so, I'll need to source those, too.

ace.cafe

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Re: '79 Bullet 350 Start Issues
« Reply #5 on: January 04, 2013, 06:26:43 PM »
At this point, I do not know what was on there originally, I believe I now have a bit of a basket case. I definitely agree on the service manual, what is a good source to get one?

Do all of the RE 350s of this vintage have the spring washers on the cams? If so, I'll need to source those, too.

This forum we are on belongs to the US importer for Royal Enfield motorcycles.
They have a Technical Package of 3 different manuals: Factory Parts Manual, Factory Service Manual, and Snidal's Repair Manual.
I'd suggest contacting them and ordering that.

You have some work cut out for you, including a lot of studying.