My R80 has died, seven years of fun, thousands of miles, always totally reliable, now dead.
So I was off to Sussex for the weekend, fully loaded for the TOMCC Rabit Rally, and my bike as usual was running great, down the M4, up the 329, down the M3, and around the M25, cruising at 65-70mph, nice and quiet, smooth, just a perfect little bimble, with a nice weekend camping, and a few beers to look forward to in Icklesham.
Stopped at clacket lane for a coffee, while my mate topped up the fuel on his Norton, and again my R80 was running great, turn off at junction 5, and head towards Hastings on the A21, where we got caught in heavy traffic at the big hill just before the by-pass, climbing up the hill and the bike coughs twice, backfires, and then dies. I pull to the side of the road, and park in a driveway halfway up the hill, and nothing, the bike will turn over, but no ignition, dead?
So I pull all the camping gear in the drizzle of a Friday morning, get out my tools and check through everything that is obvious…
I Changed the plugs, Nothing
Checked the coil for a short, Nothing,
shortened the plug leads, Nothing.
Dropped the float bowls and checked for water, Nothing.
Checked all the wiring connectors, Nothing.
Lastly I swapped out the ICU for a spare one I carry, and the bike started but ran rough?
So we thought we could head on and try to make the rally site, but alas I only made it about another mile before the bike was unrideable, the revs were jumping all over the place, and each cylinder was dropping in and out, the tacho was also jumping around erratically?
So while my mate rode on to the rally site, to get me collected with a trailer, I set to with checking the valve clearances etc, they were all fine, so I nailed it all back together?
I then spent all day Saturday stripping the bike, and cleaning every wiring connector, I also stripped and rebuilt the carbs, Nothing, still the same, it will fire right up, but as soon as you give it any revs it starts jumping about and misfiring like crazy, you can’t even pull away in first gear, it is that bad.?
So Sunday, I phone the AA for collection and relay back home, Now here is a funny bit that may prove important? while waiting on the AA man, one of the Triumph riders asked if I could give his bike a jump start, sure no problem, so we connected up the leads, I started my bike and it was still jumping around erratically just like before, but the minute he touched his starter button in an effort to start his bike, my bike ran perfectly, as soon as he took his finger from his starter button it went back to missing and popping like before, and it did this same thing three more times just the same
so why would the extra load of his bike smooth out my bikes erratic running?
Oh the shame of it, heading to a rally on a trailer