Jim Moore 2000 Yamaha FZS600 Fazer
Fusty Fazer emerges from long lay-up with fuelling difficulties. Yes, really
ALAN’S GENEROSITY knows no bounds. He didn’t even flinch when I asked if I could borrow his Fazer of an evening to see my better half, Kelly, who lives 50 miles away. In fact he insisted, keen as he was to get a couple of fresh tanks of unleaded through the FZS in an attempt to cleanse the fuel system and address the bike’s low rpm running issues.
Al ultrasonically cleaned the carbs as part of the bike’s recommissioning service back in January. The bike had stood for 10 years and unsurprisingly the Mikuni 38BDSRS were clogged solid with old fuel and debris. But even the efforts of the ultrasonic cleaning weren’t enough to restore the FZS’S carburation to its pre lay-up finesse.
Before resorting to the hassle of removing and cleaning the carbs again our man Seeley thought he’d try another less invasive procedure to spruce up the Fazer’s running. Fueltone Pro is an additive designed specifically to flush motorcycle fuel systems; our friend’s at Speedycom, specialists in performance parts for mainly Italian machinery, asked us to try the stuff because they’re thinking about marketing it (if it’s any good).
The additive comes in 45ml bottles – one per tankful. As well as claiming to clean debris from fuel lines and carbs, Fueltone also say it encourages a more complete burn and therefore reduces emissions, even increasing octane levels for enhanced performance and improved mpg. Those are big claims and, to tell the truth, we’re always sceptical of such bold assertions.
The Fazer’s low-rpm running is indeed an annoyance. Below 4000rpm the motor struggles to pull cleanly, stuttering its way off the lower reaches of its torque curve. Junctions and getaways from the lights require an embarrassingly generous amount of throttle and clutch slip just to avoid bogging down and appearing to be an even bigger tit. Idling is struggle too. I found myself constantly twiddling the idle screw to prevent the thing stalling.
On the move the Yamaha is a different story. It’s a blast. I have fond memories of the Fazer’s launch in Sicily way back in 1998. Despite its cuddly styling the FZS is no less a hooligan than it was back then. A budget all rounder it may be, but it’s also a laugh from the minute you prod the starter to the moment you stop. Al’s fitted fresh Avon 3D rubber – Storm front and Ultra rear. They really suit the Fazer and its tendency to encourage ’peg-scraping lean
“Generous amounts of throttle and clutch slip just to avoid bogging down and appearing to be an even bigger tit”
angles and last minute heart-in-mouth braking. Those blue-spot calipers may be 17 years old and counting, but they’re still sharp enough to cut it.
Unable to resist my better half’s cooking (who can say no to mushroom Stroganoff?), I’ve emptied several tanks of unleaded on Al’s Yamaha already. I’ve noticed no improvement in performance or fuel economy but bit by bit the carburation is getting better. It’s still not perfect but I reckon a couple more tanks-worth might just do it. Two more mushroom Stroganoffs it is then…
Good technique on the nozzle Jim It’s a potion alright, but is it magic?