Author Topic: She went speehhhh then poof! Smoke! Then nothing.  (Read 2218 times)

hfarley

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She went speehhhh then poof! Smoke! Then nothing.
« on: February 01, 2005, 12:16:55 PM »
Ok guys,
I took my Mamba out of the garage on Sunday. Contemplated taking her for a spin then I saw the ice still on the road and decided wasn't a good idea. SO I started her up and was going to let her run for a good 20 to 30 minutes. Long enought to get her warmed up and let the radiator turn on. A few minutes into it I heard spehhhh sound really softly and then poof a small cloud of smoke and then she shut off. I waited a few minutes and tried to see if I could figure out what the smoke smelled like and where it had come from. Then I tried to start her up again and I had no problem doing so. I didn't want to push my luck so then I shut her off. ?

Now I was standing on the left side of her (as if i was sitting on her) and the smoke and noise came from the right side. ?I am so new at this I don't think that I would notice anything small out of place. I want to troubleshoot this problem but kind of don't know where to start. ?I don't know if I took a picture if that would help you guys tell me where to start or not. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Let me also tell you what my thoughts are so far.
I don't beleive that the smoke actually came from the exhaust (they are both on that side but the smoke was more towards the center of the bike). I looked into the center part of the bike and did not see anything right off the bat that was disconnected/ looked burnt/ etc..
Now as I said I kind of don't quite know what I am looking at right now (I am slowly learning about the parts and stuff ? ;) LOL!) but there was not anything blatently obvious to me.

Ok, now, ?so where do I start?? ??? ???
Thanks!!
-Heather ?:D

« Last Edit: February 01, 2005, 12:18:09 PM by hfarley »
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MrMe

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Re: She went speehhhh then poof! Smoke! Then nothi
« Reply #1 on: February 01, 2005, 12:26:17 PM »
Just a guess but check the hoses. It happened after it was warmed up ? That smoke might have been steam. I don't know about yours but my hoses have the spring around them.
The speehhh sound also makes me think rad/hose leak.

Lucky

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Re: She went speehhhh then poof! Smoke! Then nothi
« Reply #2 on: February 01, 2005, 12:26:22 PM »
heather if you want, you can email me for my phone # & I can talk you thru things to check. normally i'd call you on my dime, i buy long distance cards just to talk to Forum members, but i'm out right now.

off hand guess, i'd say check the half-round rubber gasketts just under the valve cover gaskets to see if one is blown out.  if you had the tank off, and the air cleaner box, then when you put the airbox back on & kinked one of the two hoses connecting the valve cover to the box, you could blow out the gasket, not a serious thing, but you probably have oil on the side of the engine from it.

--Lucky
1982/3 XZ550 Touring Vison, Gold on Black

hfarley

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Re: She went speehhhh then poof! Smoke! Then nothi
« Reply #3 on: February 01, 2005, 12:30:03 PM »
Lucky, I still haven't taken the tank off yet. My class actually wants to see it but not yet, in a few weeks to correspond with the lessons.  I will email you to get your phone number. I appreciate it. Also I don't mind putting it on my dime. You will probably help me save some money in the long run. Besides, I don't pay the phone bill, my hubby does.  :P :P
-Heather
Sometimes being insane in an insane world IS being sane

I don't suffer from insanity....I enjoy every minute of it!

MotorPlow

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Re: She went speehhhh then poof! Smoke! Then nothi
« Reply #4 on: February 01, 2005, 12:54:39 PM »
Here are my thoughts....  You said it came from the middle of the bike and you mentioned the exhaust.  What did the temperature guage read when this happened?  I think it might have been from your radiator overflow bottle.  Possibly the overflow bottle, over flowed and dripped coolant down onto the hot exahust, thus causing the sizzling sound and then the "smoke".  However, with this theory, I don't see why the bike would shut it's self off.

Send more info....

Chris F.

Lucky

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Re: She went speehhhh then poof! Smoke! Then nothi
« Reply #5 on: February 01, 2005, 01:01:02 PM »
could have shut off if coolant from the overflow hit the TCI...???
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QBS

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Re: She went speehhhh then poof! Smoke! Then nothi
« Reply #6 on: February 01, 2005, 06:10:32 PM »
If coolent got sprayed on the spark coil connections that are located close by the radiator hoses it could cause the ignition to be short circuited.

louthepou

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Re: She went speehhhh then poof! Smoke! Then nothi
« Reply #7 on: February 02, 2005, 02:31:17 AM »
Hi Guys (and gals)

Weird. One thing I would surely check at this point would be the operation of the fan - both the fan motor itself, and the relay triggering it.

Louis
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Riche

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Re: She went speehhhh then poof! Smoke! Then nothi
« Reply #8 on: February 02, 2005, 08:05:18 AM »
"A few minutes into it I heard spehhhh sound really softly and then poof a small cloud of smoke and then she shut off."
"Now I was standing on the left side of her (as if i was sitting on her) and the smoke and noise came from the right side."

Posible backfire thru a carb?

hfarley

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Re: She went speehhhh then poof! Smoke! Then nothi
« Reply #9 on: February 03, 2005, 10:59:20 AM »
Motorplow: The temp was almost halfway between C and H.
Louis: how do I check the operation of the fan and stuff? Also how do I know if the radiator turns on? Does it make a really distinctive sound? If so can you describe?

The original owner took the bike out for a 22 mile ride the day before he brought it to me and since then I have only gotten her out for a total of 3 miles.  :(

Ok you guys can stop laughing now. LOL!  :P :P

But my point is I would think that if something was wrong with the radiator he would have noticed it on his ride. He has been very honest with me so far and has worked with me and I feel that if ther was an issue he would have said something to me. I have spoken to him several times since and he has always been forthcoming with information regarding the bike so I don't think that he would screw me on this. Of course if it was it's time to go then I can't argue with that.

Riche: I spoke to my instructor last night and he mentioned something about a possible backfire. It definatly did not sound like a regular backfire does like on a car. This sound was very quiet almost a hiss.

Oh another thing that my instructor asked me was what the smoke smelled like. I could not pinpoint it. He asked if it smelled like bacon or electrical. It did not smell like either. It all happened so fast and I was outside with a slight breeze so the poof of smoke was gone almost instantly. I can't even tell you what color the smoke was. If I had to guess I would guess whiteish but I don't really know.

I hope that might help in diagnosing the problem.

Lucky: I emailed you a response about the phone call. We will coordinate time/date. And thanks again!

-Heather
Sometimes being insane in an insane world IS being sane

I don't suffer from insanity....I enjoy every minute of it!

hfarley

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Re: She went speehhhh then poof! Smoke! Then nothi
« Reply #10 on: February 03, 2005, 11:30:35 AM »
Just got a note back from my teacher, he seems to think that I experienced a
Lean backfire or Kick-back,through the Intake  He says this
happens on import bikes because they are designed to
run very lean.(Especially when they are cold or not
fully warmed-up) As the carbs or Injection sys.gets
"Dirty" they tend to run even leaner.  Then he told me to Put some
TECH-RON fuel-injection cleaner in the gas tank,run it
and continue to run Sta-Bil in the gas tank before
each fill-up!

I still want to walk through troubleshooting with you Lucky, but does this sound like a good idea to do also?

Thanks!
-Heather
Sometimes being insane in an insane world IS being sane

I don't suffer from insanity....I enjoy every minute of it!

Walt_M.

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Re: She went speehhhh then poof! Smoke! Then nothi
« Reply #11 on: February 03, 2005, 12:54:41 PM »
You can definitely hear the cooling fan when it comes on if it is at idle. I assume this is what you mean by when does the radiator come on. What you experienced might have been due to a little water in the gas, depends on how well you got the Sta-bil mixed. I agree with your instructor, keep using Sta-bil until you are riding regularly.
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Riche

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Re: She went speehhhh then poof! Smoke! Then nothi
« Reply #12 on: February 03, 2005, 03:10:58 PM »
Heather,

Cold temperatures equal dense air, requiring more fuel/ richer jetting. So with a machine running on the edge of lean cold air can make a big difference, especially during warm up. I?ll bet you had just given her a little throttle when the backfire thru the carb happened.
Most of my dirt bikes required richer jetting during the winter. But the up side was oh how they would make power when the temperature headed towards 0. Denser air = more horsepower
;D

silicon_toad2000

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Re: She went speehhhh then poof! Smoke! Then nothi
« Reply #13 on: February 03, 2005, 10:21:35 PM »
I had one of those speeesh thingsy with a car of mine, it was a backfire caused by a dodgy ignition system. and smoke came out the inkate, it was kind of sweet smelling but the car was running on LPG so it probably smelled different to your bike.
I have had my bike kick back a couple of times, the ignition seems a bit too advanced at starter speeds, or maybe my battery/starter/charging system needs attention but thats a bit lower on my list.
I'd be having a good look at your TCI and ignition system.
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louthepou

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Re: She went speehhhh then poof! Smoke! Then nothi
« Reply #14 on: February 04, 2005, 09:08:10 AM »
Hey Heather,

Don't you just love reading what's posted here? I certainly enjoy it. Lean backfire is a good hypothesis.

Proper way to check fan in Haynes manual. E-mail me at home if you don't have it, or if you're confused about it. But with the mention of the temp gauge only half way, that rules out overheating.

Normally, the fan gets going when temperature gauge reaches something like 3/4 of its range (ROV colleagues, correct me if I'm wrong). For a full year (early V owneership years), my temp gauge would go beyond that, and the bike would overheat. Until I did the proper checks and diagnosed a faulty relay. Had a spare, solved my problem. Yeah, should have done it earlier.

A side note: the temperature would typically rise high if you're just letting the bike sit, or if you're in trafic. Going for a ride, (say, above some 25 mph) the air flow through the radiator keeps the coolant temp low enough.

Louis
Hi, my name is Louis, and I'm a Vision-o-holic

Lucky

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Re: She went speehhhh then poof! Smoke! Then nothi
« Reply #15 on: February 04, 2005, 12:55:14 PM »
lean backfire doesn't explane the wisp of smoke though.  it's not unusual to have more than one problem at a time.  most customers think that the mechanic is B.S.ing them when they are told they have more than one problem..

I'll talk to you when you have time, but untill then, and what i'd tell you on the phone to start with, is closely examine the bike.  bring a notebook & jot down anything that doesn't seem right.  then you can ask "is that normal?"

look for anything leaking, however small. including green coolant around the base of the 2 chrome pipes on the right side, oil leaks, etc. that could explane the smoke.

if you find a fluid leak, clean the engine well with degreaser (simple green) a rag and a brush. rinse well & follow up by spraying down the engine with brake cleaner (leaves no oily residue)  dry the engine with a rag and/or compressed air.

Then to find the leak, take some baby powder & sprinkle it in the area you found the leak, then go up from there. be generous.  start the bike and watch the area for any signs of a leak. you'll know right away, the talcum powder will turn the color of the leaking fluid.

ask your maintainence teacher if he knows that trick. if not, i'm older than he is....

one note, if you put a lot of powder in the area behind the fan, when it kicks on, you'll be in a cloud, lol.

--Lucky
1982/3 XZ550 Touring Vison, Gold on Black