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This is a nightmare help please! I have an '04 Volusia VL800 Limited that I bought in March '11. Ran great for about 1,000 miles. THEN...bike began acting like it wasn't getting fuel for a couple moments followed by the engine running normal. After getting home, let it cool and then started it again. Engine barely runs with choke on & will not run at all with choke off. I changed the spark plugs (which were fouled) and ran Seafoam through it. No help. Changed the fuel in the tank...no better. It is now in the 3rd shop (last 2 have been dealerships). The carb has been cleaned, the fuel system is good to go plus lots of other stuff. The current dealership has a call in to the Suzuki tech line to help. I've been reading the other threads on help too. Can it really be this difficult? Does anybody know what may be causing this? Thanks very much!

 

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Welcome to the site, pull up a chair, the beer is in the fridge.....

The fuel valve is operated by a vacuum it sounds like you are loosing vacuum, crack in a vac hose???? There is also a screen inside the tank that may be clogged but I would assume that has been checked.
 

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Vacuum operated fuel pump going bad or low vac pulses to pump are another possibility.
I had similar symptoms on the bike, it was a clogged pilot in the carb, does yours run godd 1/4 plus throttle? mine did.
 

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It's not a fuel system issues, it's the ignition coil.
 

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It's not a fuel system issues, it's the ignition coil.
Very likely. Test by pulling the plug wire to the front cylinder, and see if the engine will still fire when cold-choked. If it does, do the same to be back cylinder. If it is an ignition coil, engine performance will be constant when you plug/unplug the bad coil.
 

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That test might not even work. A bad coil vs. a completely failed coil. I have seen this a lot. An unfindable problem, replace the coils. Often times the coil is just not delivering enough voltage but is providing enough. Try the test above, if it work OK... still replace the coils.:biglaugh:
 

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I've seen it both ways. But in this case, if it was a gradual decline, I wouldn't expect the the sudden failure described in the OP. It would be pretty weird for both coils to die at the same time.

You can also do a peak voltage test and a resistance test on the coils. Clymer says >200V, 2-6 ohms on the primary, 15k-30k ohms on the secondary. That can be a real pita to do though.
 

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How many miles are on the bike? Are the plugs black and sooty or oily? What was the previous owners maintenance records like? Did anyone do a compression leak down test?
 

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duplicate post...dammit.
 

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Complete check is a pain.

Air has to go through. Blow through exhaust. Make sure clear. Make sure no leaks in air, box to head.

Fuel has to go through. I tend to bypass fuel pump/hose system on carb systems to see whether will run with gravity feed from a separate line. See how the bike runs that way reved up.

Check the compression. Check the valves.

Electrical system - I like that one. Probably start there. Check for really hot spark. Should be really strong. If there's a hot spark, check the timing.

That's about all there is to making an engine run. It's all in the details when something mysterious is going on. Just as likely to be something odd. Actually touch and check electrical contacts. Actually trace stuff. The number of times I've had a concealed hole in a hose or a corroded concealed contact . . . .
 

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Discussion Starter #14
16k on bike. Yes to compression test-good to go. As far as I can tell the maintenance on the bike has been "good" but not perfect.
 

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Just a thought, Is the exhaust clogged?
Also, check for resistance (ohms) at the ignition connections.

Complete check is a pain.

Air has to go through. Blow through exhaust. Make sure clear. Make sure no leaks in air, box to head. .
 

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I have had the same problem with in the last two weeks! Started off missing and sputtering first, then gradually got worse. Thought it was a carburetor problem/running rich and took it to the shop. $60.00 later the bike was the same and the mechanic said they :leaned it out some" to attempt to fix. On my ride Saturday she went down for the count and the spark plugs were fouled like crazy!
I tried the test listed in the post and it seems to be the right coil. I wrenched ALL day yesterday and did the whole Seafoam, new plugs, carb cleaner routine and none of that helped. Looks like I'm ordering a new coil.
 

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I had a similar issue. Ended up being the very short vacuum line that goes from your petc0ck to the 'F' connector. Nothing visible, but when I pulled the hose I found a split going along the hose that would open just enough to lose vacuum occasionally, but not all the time. Replaced that and the problem went away.
 

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can you run it with tank off having an assistant carefully pour fuel into carb while gunning throttle? My bet is poor fuel delivery (pump going bad.)
 
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