So, you wanna kickstart a Harley? Since absorbing the Flathead power brand, S&S Cycle has had an influx of customers contacting their tech support with questions on kickstarting a Harley-Davidson.
In this video, S&S Cycle’s Wally Cahill and Bruce Tessmer give us a little insight and a demonstration on how to kickstart a Harley-Davidson with an S&S Super E carburetor. An added benefit of kickstarting a Harley with an S&S Super E or G carburetor is that these carburetors utilize an enrichener circuit rather than a choke.
Utilizing the S&S carburetor’s enrichener, along with its accelerator pump, makes for a much easier kick or electric start of a Harley-Davidson. As Bruce demonstrates, positioning the enrichener lever up approximately 80%, along with two full wicks of the throttle is all you should need to easily kickstart a Harley that is correctly tuned.
However, every Harley is a little bit different. All carbureted motorcycles seem to have their own unique personalities. Temperature, altitude, and humidity will also come into play when starting a carbureted Harley. A rider will learn his or her own routine for successful kickstarts.
Maybe, the enrichener lever only needs to be opened halfway. Maybe three full throttle wicks work best. Sometimes, it works best to kick the motor over a couple times with the ignition in the OFF position in order to better prime the engine. Experiment to find a method that works best for you.
Remember, there are a number of other important variables which come into play that will determine how well (or how poorly) a carbureted Harley-Davidson will start. It is important that the motorcycle is correctly timed. If running points, make sure the contacts are correctly gapped.
Also, the carburetor needs to be accurately adjusted with no air leaks at the intake. Make sure to be running a quality set of spark plugs that are properly gapped. If you are running a well-tuned Harley-Davidson with an S&S carburetor, kickstarting is easy to do.
One more notable benefit: starting your hog with one or two kicks. It doesn’t get much cooler!
Thank you S&S Cycle for sharing this video with us. Learn more at the company’s website.