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 SWing Wouldn't fire up

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bikehiker
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SWing Wouldn't fire up Empty
PostSubject: SWing Wouldn't fire up   SWing Wouldn't fire up I_icon_minitimeFri Mar 22, 2019 3:23 pm

SWing cranks, but doesn’t fire. Maybe this won't fix your issue, but it worked this time on my SWing.  

Forgive the long story, but I thought this could help a SWing owner in the future. About three weeks ago, I was about to post on this forum how quickly my SWing fired up after having sat in my shed for about 6 weeks without running because of our especially harsh winter, with the extreme cold, storms, etc. About a week later, I went to fire it up again, which it did—for about two seconds, then stopped.  I tried and tried, even to the point of opening the throttle, which has never been necessary with the latest three fuel-injected bikes that I have owned.  I went to restart, but nothing.  It cranked, but showed no sign of firing.  I smelled fuel vapor, so I knew there was no lack of a fuel line problem.  I read some info. on this forum, hoping I would not have some of the starting issues that I read about here in various posts.  I didn’t check the plug firing method yet. Maybe I had an electrical issue.

Having only about 4,350 miles on the odometer of this 2012 bike, I wondered how this can happen to this totally reliable machine.  So I started by adding dry gas to the tank and replacing the plugs with Honda SWing-specific plugs. Confirmed plug gap on new plugs.  Same cranking without firing. Then I emptied the tank and replaced with fresh gas.  Same no-fire.  Then I hooked the battery to my portable lithium ion starter battery to give more juice and a longer cranking time.  Cranked a lot, but still no firing.

I resigned to trailer it to my local Honda dealer.  Maybe they can check the electrics.  When I called for the appointment, the service guy was surprised that my 2012 SWing had this issue.  Later, as I stood at the desk, I noticed the $90 per-hour labor charge sign.  The service guy asked “how deep do you want us to go” and how many hours before you tell us to stop looking.  I said I would trust them unless they saw a major issue. This is a reliable dealer with a good reputation, so I put my trust in them.  

When I told them about my attempts, the service guy asked if I had checked the air filter, which I did not, so I left with that additional thought in mind.  

While waiting for a call from the service dept., I thought that maybe the air passage somewhere got blocked with those horrible stink bugs that have entered every orifice of every item in my shed, including the inner electric motor of a 12-volt car vac that I had hanging there.  The $90 per hour labor sign kept reappearing in my head, along with additional thoughts that even Honda service would give up, charge me $1,000, and ask me to take this 550 pounds of dead metal off their property.  

The next day I got a call from service who told me they got my SWing running, and the charge would be…wait…wait…$56.60, tax included.  That’s 56.60 American dollars.  I asked what was wrong.  He said the technician just held the throttle open for a long period of time to expel what they thought was “bad gas,” as “blue smoke” exited.  He took it for a six-mile ride, and everything ran fine after that.  Yes, I could probably have saved money, time, effort, and—most of all—much anxiety by holding open the throttle longer to expel bad gas/water from the line.  But maybe someone reading this will some day benefit by holding open that throttle a little longer. Maybe I cranked 75% of the evil out, and the service tech cranked out the rest.

Just a thought, maybe my wife would have fixed this problem: While I did not crank long enough, she sometimes cranks too long.    

Ride safe!
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Dale N.
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SWing Wouldn't fire up Empty
PostSubject: Re: SWing Wouldn't fire up   SWing Wouldn't fire up I_icon_minitimeFri Mar 22, 2019 5:57 pm

Very interesting. I'll have to remember that if/when it happens to me. Thanks for the info.
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bandito2
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SWing Wouldn't fire up Empty
PostSubject: Re: SWing Wouldn't fire up   SWing Wouldn't fire up I_icon_minitimeFri Mar 22, 2019 8:01 pm

This is exactly the sort of thing probably any of us would want to hear so that at some time we could avoid the dread and frustration of a bike that wont start as we would expect it to. May not seem like much but it surely is a good thing to know. Perhaps many of us don't have too much more hair left on our heads to afford tearing any out in frustration and some of us... our hair (what we may have left) is grey enough already thank you. Laughing

Thanx for the tip.
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Cosmic_Jumper
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SWing Wouldn't fire up Empty
PostSubject: Re: SWing Wouldn't fire up   SWing Wouldn't fire up I_icon_minitimeSat Mar 23, 2019 10:45 am

IIRC A couple of years back there was a thread here regarding a 'Cranks but wont start' issue. Eventually someone posted that under this circumstance and with the scoot on the center stand twist the throttle fully open and then try starting. It seems that when the throttle is at full stop open the TPS causes the ECM to change the timing (or some other magic) and the engine will start. Or, maybe, the throttle at that position simply allows the flooded engine to clear out.

Of course you need to let the throttle return to idle position as soon as the engine starts.

I've tried this procedure two time and it proved successful.

Tim
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Dale N.
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SWing Wouldn't fire up Empty
PostSubject: Re: SWing Wouldn't fire up   SWing Wouldn't fire up I_icon_minitimeSat Mar 23, 2019 9:23 pm

I took my SWing out for the first time this season. It was about 50 degrees and I didn't go that far just wanted to get on it. I charged the battery to full and she started right off without any hitches. Ran great too! My street had some water on it but only at the two intersections at the stop signs. The main roads/streets were fine and dry.
It sure was nice to get on it again! So far riding will be only for short rides in the afternoon. It's still in the 30's in the am until after noon when it warms up a bit. Oh Well. The season is just around the corner. Hopefully the corner isn't 40 miles away...
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Jim Caudill
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SWing Wouldn't fire up Empty
PostSubject: Re: SWing Wouldn't fire up   SWing Wouldn't fire up I_icon_minitimeSun Mar 24, 2019 9:57 pm

In many automotive electronic injection systems there is a "clear flood mode". This is usually activated by opening the throttle wide open BEFORE CRANKING the engine. Whether or not the Silverwing's system responds the same way is unknown by me. If I were going to try the technique, I would shut off the ignition, hold the throttle wide open, turn the ignition switch "ON", and then hit the start button. I'm not sure how many hands are required to do this, so I might have to use my throttle-lock until I get a hand free. Honda may have simplified the whole thing by simply interpreting the wide-open throttle while cranking as an attempt to "clear flood".
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bikehiker
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SWing Wouldn't fire up Empty
PostSubject: Re: SWing Wouldn't fire up   SWing Wouldn't fire up I_icon_minitimeMon Mar 25, 2019 10:18 am

Tim and Jim, thanks for the additional info above that will improve this post greatly to help others.  

In addition, I have been trying to analyze WHAT I DID WRONG to CREATE this issue so I would not need to come to the point of having to crank longer w/open throttle.  Well, here's a confession that may help: Because in previous years, I have found at least one day during winter to enjoy a window of riding, I was not concerned about putting the bike in proper storage, meaning filling up the tank.  Well, that was one piece of my own advice that I ignored. I had exactly a half tank of gas when this issue occurred. That could have been one factor.

Another factor could have been the following:  I have occasionally added a small amount of Seafoam or Marvel Mystery Oil to a full tank. I'm pretty sure that i remember the last tank having the Marvel added, hoping that it would be beneficial to cold starts by providing more lubrication to protect a cold engine from high rpm starts.  I have since learned that while Seafoam and Marvel are both superior oil products, they are both unnecessary and possibly frustrating to a SWing engine that is fuel injected and sits.  Henceforth, if I add anything to my tank, it will be specific to a fuel injected engine. I understand that Seafoam originated as a good engine cleaner for two-stroke, carbureted engines, not fuel injected. If I am tempted to use Marvel or Seafoam, the bike will not sit.

I am adding the above to consider the human error involved and keep from blaming the SWing.
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Mech 1 twa
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SWing Wouldn't fire up Empty
PostSubject: Re: SWing Wouldn't fire up   SWing Wouldn't fire up I_icon_minitimeMon Mar 25, 2019 10:01 pm

Ethanol is the real problem. Gas is 10% mix and likes to absorb water from the air. Seafoam has alcohol that just adds more to the mix. It's a good cleaner but not for storage. Full tank and ANY STA-BIL product will work well to keep fuel fresh.

Plugs got wet from water or weak gas and then it flooded.

Some stations sell non Ethanol gas best for winter storage. Check this site to find a station near you.. pure-gas.org Expect to pay more 20-30 cents more. Non Ethanol will also get 2-3 more miles to the gallon. No savings on price but good for winter storage.

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bikehiker
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SWing Wouldn't fire up Empty
PostSubject: Re: SWing Wouldn't fire up   SWing Wouldn't fire up I_icon_minitimeTue Mar 26, 2019 3:59 pm

Thanks, Mech. Another further clarification. Good points.
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Dale N.
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SWing Wouldn't fire up Empty
PostSubject: Re: SWing Wouldn't fire up   SWing Wouldn't fire up I_icon_minitimeTue Mar 26, 2019 9:26 pm

I beg to differ on the Seafoam thing. I dump about 1/2 can into the tank and fill it up on what I think will be my last ride of the season. I ride it around a bit to get the mix circulated good then put it away. I also put about 1/2 can in my 6 gallon gas can for my snowblower and lawn mower. It sometimes takes almost 3 years to use it up and I've never had a problem with anything starting.

Each to his own on this one. But I like Seafoam.

Don't want to start a squabble either. It's just my 2 cents.
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