Motorcycle News (UK) - - Garagae -

Which dyno op­er­a­tor?

If you’re not sure where to take your bike, speak to peo­ple who have had work done. Word of mouth on good ser­vice gets round re­ally quickly. One at­trac­tive fac­tor for peo­ple us­ing us is that we have [carb sup­plier] Allen’s Per­for­mance four doors up from us. The boss, Steve Pan­ter, re­ally knows his stuff. If a dyno shop has a car­bu­ret­tor sup­plier just up the road that’s use­ful.

Which gadget?

Most peo­ple know Power Com­man­ders [the mod­ule that al­lows a dyno op­er­a­tor to mod­ify the sig­nals the ECU sends to the fuel in­jec­tors], but they need to up their game now. You can do the same with Baz­zaz for a lot less money, or go the Wool­wich way where you can ac­tu­ally talk to the ECU.

Power Com­man­der have the name and the brand, but there’s the fuel mod­ule, then peo­ple of­ten need the sec­ondary fuel mod­ule and then the ig­ni­tion mod­ule, so it gets ex­pen­sive. Baz­zaz will do a pack­age all in one. Wool­wich al­lows you to re­flash the stan­dard ECU. Some ECUS are im­pos­si­ble to break into, but I’ve not come across one yet!

Dyno v the road

It’s about ex­pe­ri­ence: If a bike be­haves in a cer­tain way on the dyno then I know how it’s go­ing to be­have on the road. With some bikes I might see a flat spot, but own­ers say it feels great. You get the mo­men­tum of the bike push­ing for­ward on the road; you don’t get that as much on the dyno.

What’s the process on a bike with carbs?

If it’s tick­ing over OK we’ll get ev­ery­thing warm, start with the main jets and work back­wards. So wide open throt­tle to get the main jet right, then we start look­ing at part-throt­tle – the nee­dle set­ting – and roll-ons as well, for when it’s loaded or when it’s just cruis­ing. The pi­lot sys­tem is usu­ally the last thing we look at.

What are older bikes like to work on?

A lot de­pends on the owner. If they know what they’re do­ing we might just bal­ance the carbs and that would be it. Oth­er­wise it’s more a case of be­ing me­thod­i­cal.

We have a Z1000 in at the mo­ment that’s not run­ning right. You start by clean­ing the carbs, but af­ter that we might do a com­pres­sion and leak down test, then maybe valve clear­ances, then make sure all the cylin­ders have sparks. Then gen­er­ally they’ll run OK.

Some­times, like with this bike, peo­ple will fit af­ter­mar­ket ig­ni­tions them­selves and then not tell you it hasn’t run right since. So we’ve down­loaded the in­struc­tions and we’re work­ing our way through that.

I just love the chal­lenge. I man­aged to get crap field bikes work­ing when I was younger, so it doesn’t faze me now. Some shops just want to do ser­vice work, but we en­joy the fault-find­ing side of it.

Get­ting per­fect fu­elling with carbs is a more tricky busi­ness

Where art meets science

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