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  1. #1
    wspatton's Avatar
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    May 2013
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    1973 Honda CL350

    Hey everyone!

    First off, this is my first post in using this forum and if I'm doing anything incorrectly please let me know so I can be as efficient as possible with your time and my own. I did try to search for solutions in other threads but couldn't find anything specifically helpful to my issues.

    Second, thanks for any advice and tips you can provide me with along the way to help get this beautiful bike running as best as she can!

    Alright to start off the bike is a 1973 Honda CL350.
    The title claims it's a 1972 but every time I search online for '72's I get images and info that doesn't seem to perfectly match what my bike looks like.

    Here are a couple links to images and a video of my bike.
    The password to access the album is "hondatwins"
    http://pattondesignandphoto.zenfolio.com/honda-cl350
    Here's a link to the YouTube video I posted of it running.


    Now to try to explain what issues I'm having with the bike.
    Forgive me for not knowing all of the lingo.
    I'm definitely a rookie when it comes to trying to be a mechanic!

    I usually kickstart the bike to start it because the electric start just doesn't have the power to turn it over. Once it's started, it sounds like it's running really well. Nothing is misfiring, nothing is rattling, it all sounds pretty solid.
    It idles comfortably around 1-2k rpms.

    So... after about 5-10 minutes the bike will silently die. Again, there are no misfires or chugs that sounds like the engine is lacking fuel. It simply and quietly dies.

    In the images and the video you can see that the fuel lines don't stay completely full. I'm unsure if that's common and I'm just being paranoid or if that may having something to do with it.
    A buddy of mine and myself just took apart the petcock and fuel lines running to the carbs and cleaned them up to make sure nothing was clogging the distribution of fuel. After cleaning the lines still wouldn't fill up all the way.

    I'm assuming the lines are gravity fed and not vacuum pulled?
    I'm also curious about what the line is that sits right under the gas tank.
    Does this line have fuel in it? What's it's purpose?


    We also have checked the battery because with the way it's behaving when it dies, it's as if someone hit the kill switch. So we're naturally worried that it might have something to do with the wiring or battery...
    It sits at above 12 before we started the bike and after starting the bike with it running the volts read at maybe 12.5 or so on average. The charge doesn't appear to be dropping while letting it run.

    Like I said I'm new at this and I am probably missing a lot of information.
    I hope this is sufficient in starting off a helpful conversation.

    Thanks again for everyone's time and effort in helping me out!
    Thanks for your help!
    1972 Honda CL350 Scrambler

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  3. #2
    Administrator JeyLux's Avatar
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    Sep 2008
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    Re: 1973 Honda CL350

    Welcome to the site!

    I moved this to the CB/CL 350 fuel section.


    Jason
    1972 CL350K4 [Sold]
    1973 CB500/K Street Tacker [Sold]
    2003 Buell XB9S [Daily Commuter]
    2004 Husaberg FE450e [Dirt Bike]
    2013 Polaris Sportsman [Farm Hand]

  4. #3
    wspatton's Avatar
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    Re: 1973 Honda CL350

    For a more simplified list of questions I have regarding fixing my bike... you can read the list below

    1.) Is my bike a 1972 or a 1973? I would title my bike as a 1973 Honda CL350 Scrambler K4... is that accurate?
    (The title claims it's 1972 but when researching the results I find don't match the style of my bike)

    2.) Why do the fuel lines from the petcock to the carbs not completely fill up? Are they gravity fed or vacuum fed?

    3.) What is the line that runs from one side of the gas tank to the other side underneath and closest to the seat? Is it filled with fuel?
    (You can see a photo of what I'm talking about by using the link above)

    4.) Why would the bike silently die after approximately 5-10 minutes?
    (It doesn't misfire or sound like it's running out of gas, it feels and sounds like someone hit the kill switch)

    5.) Why does the top exhaust blow hot air and the bottom exhaust blow cooler air?

    I think that's all for now. Answers or ideas to these questions will help a ton!
    Thanks for your help!
    1972 Honda CL350 Scrambler

  5. #4

    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Houston, Texas
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    358

    Re: 1973 Honda CL350

    Quote Originally Posted by wspatton
    For a more simplified list of questions I have regarding fixing my bike... you can read the list below

    1.) Is my bike a 1972 or a 1973? I would title my bike as a 1973 Honda CL350 Scrambler K4... is that accurate?
    (The title claims it's 1972 but when researching the results I find don't match the style of my bike)

    2.) Why do the fuel lines from the petcock to the carbs not completely fill up? Are they gravity fed or vacuum fed?

    Someone correct me if I'm wrong but I believe our bikes depend on gravity for gas feed.

    3.) What is the line that runs from one side of the gas tank to the other side underneath and closest to the seat? Is it filled with fuel?
    (You can see a photo of what I'm talking about by using the link above)


    That line allows the last amounts of fuel to be used from both sides of the tank.

    4.) Why would the bike silently die after approximately 5-10 minutes?
    (It doesn't misfire or sound like it's running out of gas, it feels and sounds like someone hit the kill switch)

    Perhaps that is an electrical issue related to heat(increased heat = increased resistance). This is not normal but if your 40 year old connectors are oxidized, the normal operating heat could cause this. Does it restart and run while it's still hot?

    5.) Why does the top exhaust blow hot air and the bottom exhaust blow cooler air?

    The cylinder blowing cold air isn't firing or running right.

    I think that's all for now. Answers or ideas to these questions will help a ton!

  6. #5
    wspatton's Avatar
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    Re: 1973 Honda CL350

    Posting an image straight to the forum instead of making you visit my link!
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    Thanks for your help!
    1972 Honda CL350 Scrambler

  7. #6
    texmish's Avatar
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    Re: 1973 Honda CL350

    The fuel line under the tank just balances both sides due to the backbone position of the frame.

    Air bubbles in the fuel line are common...just a result of the design of the petcock nothing to be concerned about...yes they are gravity fed.

    Bike dying after running 5-10 mins here is what I would check:
    1. There is an air vent in your gas cap try running the bike with the gas cap open to make sure you aren't getting vacuum lock.
    2. Coils could be bad and cutting out when hot.
    3. Petcock plugged (remove lower bowl and check screen...also turn fuel on while bowl is off should have good flow from both reserve and on positions...get something to catch all the fuel before you turn it on)
    4. You battery may not be getting enough charge (you should be over 14v with the high beam on @ 4000 rpm).
    5. Vacuum leak around carb intake boots
    6. Do a full tune up to eliminate any other issues (cam chain tension, valve clearance, points (check at idle and at full advance with strobe light, sync/balance carbs.
    7. Get a new battery and battery tender
    MISH
    Current bikes:1971 CB750, 1969 cb450 k1,
    Previous builds:1968 CB350 Mild Cafe,1974 CB360 Cafe

  8. #7
    texmish's Avatar
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    Re: 1973 Honda CL350

    There is a plate on your steering stem neck that says what date the bike was manufactured. you can check the link below to verify by the VIN.

    http://www.honda350k.com/CL350.html
    MISH
    Current bikes:1971 CB750, 1969 cb450 k1,
    Previous builds:1968 CB350 Mild Cafe,1974 CB360 Cafe

  9. #8
    texmish's Avatar
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    Re: 1973 Honda CL350

    After re-reading through this post I think seisdatex was most likely on to something with the electrical issue. Since you say it just dies like someone hit the kill switch. I'd check the main wiring from battery to spark plugs for loose connections:

    starting at the red wire from the battery, through the fuse, red transfers to black at the ignition switch, then black goes to black wire with white stripe at the run switch, black with white stripe goes to coils, then to condenser/points blue/yellow, then to spark plugs. Check all those for loose connections (take RH handlebar switch apart to check for loose worn connections by run switch) and maybe wiggle some wires while the bike is running to see if you can pinpoint the connection problem.

    Your exhaust being cooler on one side is most likely a sign your carbs are out of sync. Back the throttle idle adjustment screws out all the way then adjust the throttle cables under the tank so that each carb pulls at the exact same time. Then adjust the idle screws back in equal amounts until you are at 1200 rpm and have equal exhaust pressure coming from both pipes (Assuming there are no exhaust leaks from rust holes).
    MISH
    Current bikes:1971 CB750, 1969 cb450 k1,
    Previous builds:1968 CB350 Mild Cafe,1974 CB360 Cafe

  10. #9
    wspatton's Avatar
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    Re: 1973 Honda CL350

    Thanks seisdatex & texmish!
    I'm looking into what you've suggested now and I'll let you know what I find!

    I appreciate any other insight you guys or others have!
    I'm committed to tracking down the issue and solving it.
    I want this baby to purr longer than 10 minutes
    Thanks for your help!
    1972 Honda CL350 Scrambler

  11. #10
    wspatton's Avatar
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    Re: 1973 Honda CL350

    Is it a simple task to unscrew the bowl of the carbs and replace the gaskets? I believe my right side carb is leaking along the rim of the bowl. Any recommendations on replacement gaskets?

    Can't seem to find where the air vent would be in the gas cap of the tank.
    Looks like it has a solid rubber ring to seal and I don't see any holes.
    Anyone have a photo or diagram that explains where exactly to look?

    What's the best method of checking if the coils are shot?

    Petcock doesn't seem to be clogged at all. It has a really nice and consistent stream.

    It's a new battery but it's definitely not reaching 14v at y4k rpm.
    Consistently sits at around 12.2-12.7ish.
    What does that suggest is wrong if its not reaching the 14v range?
    Thanks for your help!
    1972 Honda CL350 Scrambler

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