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I just bought an '05 Suzuki GS500F with only 1400 miles on it. The bike has been sitting in a storage shed & was last tagged in '07. I got the bike & a replacement title from the State; no keys. I'm in the process of getting a key cut. It's safe to assume the battery is dead...... What do I need to have done mechanical-wise before putting new battery in it & trying to fire it up??????? Thanks your help!
 

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drain all fluids and replace. hoses/cables need to be inspected at the very least. tires checked for dry rot/cracking/replaced.
put some carb cleaner in there for the 1st couple of tanks. chain cleaned and relubed. pop plugs and make sure it will "turn over" before starting the 1st time. clean air filter.
replace battery and fully charge before attempting to start.
 

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drain all fluids and replace.

pop plugs and make sure it will "turn over" before starting the 1st time.

replace battery and fully charge before attempting to start.
Drain and FLUSH the gas tank.
Flush the carbs by opening the drain screws with fresh gas and carb cleaner in the tank.

Put a teaspoon of oil in each cylinder before you do the first test turnover and loosely plug the holes with a rag (if it turns over briskly, that oil will come flying back out).
Let it turn over several revs to get fresh oil through out (maybe 5 seconds or so). This would be a good time for a quick spark check too.
And new plugs too.

If it has an external fuel filter, plan on replacing that real soon.

A shot of fuel or starting fluid in the airbox will probably save you a lot of wear and tear on the starter and battery.

Might be a good idea to do the very first rev by pushing a few feet with it in a higher gear (plugs out as above). This is better done with two people.

P.S. I think you should do engine oil and gas and plugs first to see if it will even run; might not without a manual carb cleaning. You can worry about the rest of the fluids later......IF it runs.
 

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After 5 years in a non-climate controlled storage shed, the inside of the motor is going to be rusted. Worst case, the rings are rusted to the insides of the cylinders and the motor will have to be completely rebuilt, best case you have some surface rust that will wear off as it runs, but seriously shorted the life of the rings if you start it up dry. Remove the spark plugs, spray some oil into the spark plug holes to lube the cylinders, take off the cover that hides the end of the crankshaft, put a wrench on it, and see if the motor spins. If ti does not, you own a boat anchor that will cost more to fix than it is worth.
If the motor spins with the wrench, drain the engine oil, and remove the clutch side cover. The clutch plates will more likely be stuck together- this usually happens in just a few months. You'll need to separate them, then put the cover back on with a new gasket, as the old one is nice and dried out by now.
Put on a new filter, fill with oil. Drain the brake fluid, flush, and refill with new. The brake lines should be replaced every couple years, so at 7 years old I'd replace them. Oil the chain and sprockets. Make sure the exhaust is not clogged with a mouse nest. remove the intake box cover, replace the air filter, clean out any dead bugs or critter nests.
tires are good for about 5 years before they start to degrade. Your's are in all likelihood original, so they are 7 years old and will have flat spots from the bike sitting. I'd replace them.
Check the brakes for proper operation. The calipers may be frozen or rusted- remove and rebuild if they are sticking at all.
Inspect the chain, lube it well.
The carbs will be dirty at least, and depending on if the bike was properly stored they probably need to come off for a good cleaning. If there was any gas left in the fuel tank it has turned to varnish, so the tank will need to be flushed. The fuel lines should be replaced every few years under normal condition- check them for blisters, dry rot, or cracks, replace it needed or if they seem dirty on the inside. The petcock may be gummed up if there was gas left in the tank, and will need to be removed and cleaned.
If the bike had absolutely no gas in it when stored, dump some carb cleaner in the tank and fill with fresh gas.
Bounce the front end up and down for several minutes. If there is any dampness on the small part of the forks the fork seals are dried out and need to be replaced.
Put in a new fully charged battery. Bike in neutral, clutch pulled in, kill switch to "run", petcock off, plugs still out. Hit the starter button, let the motor spin for a few seconds to work the oil through the rings and lube things up. Plugs back in, choke out, petcock to "on", do not touch the gas. Hit the starter button, hold for 5 seconds, release. Wait 10 seconds, repeat.
Expect lots of smoke when it first fires as it burns off the oil and the rings seal back up. If it does not stop smoking pretty quickly the rings are not sealing. if it smokes right when you start it up each time but not once it is running, the valve seals are dried out and leaking.
If you have done everything I listed above, the bike should be safe to take for a spin.
 

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Bosco,

With all due respect the min required to start are spark, fuel air flow. The carb should be cleaned, not a spray, broken down to the jets and cleaned(not as hard as it sounds) clean or remove the air filter, hook up an external fuel source and try it. Yes some wd-40 in the cylinders before starting would be recommended, the only question that matters is does it run? If yes THEN worry about is it street worthy, P.S. it is likely you purchased a bike that will require the min for you to enjoy congrats!
 

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I disagree completely. I have been wrenching on motorcycles for over 30 years, and bikes that have been sitting for years are generally a nightmare to get running right again unless you take your time and do it right. Machinery is not meant to sit, and machinery responds poorly to changes in usage paterns. If the bike is incorrectly started back up before it is properly serviced, you risk damaging the motor or destroying the rings and seriously shorten the life of the bike. No point getting it started if you destroy something and it only runs for a short time before you need an engine overhaul. Do it right, and this can be a good bike assuming there was nothing wrong with it when it wa parked. Do it wrong, and you'll just create a frustrating money pit.
 

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The carb should be cleaned,

Yes some wd-40 in the cylinders before starting would be recommended,
With all due respect........
Taking carbs apart REALLY IS a big deal for most novices. People who ask questions like this likely should NOT be doing that.
Anyhow, I believe in doing only what really is required and not assuming the worst.
If you are going to assume the worst, you might as well just come right out and tell him that the whole engine needs to be rebuilt.

And WD40 is NOT a lubricant. It is heavy on solvents and would ensure that any oil film left on the cylinder walls would be flushed away.
 

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Gentlemen I mean no offense to you, this guy just wants to know if it runs. And quite frankly I read a lot of posts on this site and I don't feel the negativity is necessary! Arn't we supposed to be helpful and positive? If it were my first bike and received some of this "advise" I would just take the biggest hammer I could find to it.

I will always believe the KISS method is best, and I would be happy to describe a basic carb breakdown to whomever would like. On the WD-40 you are correct but It will let him know if it runs.
 

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With all due respect EZ, why would you assume everything is fine? I am not assuming the motor needs to be rebuilt or that it had major problems, but why are you assuming it does not? Why rebuild the carbs before knowing if the motor is any good or not? What I am saying is that it is pointless to try and start the bike without even CHECKING for the worse. Take 5 minutes to put a wrench on the crankshaft. If the motor does not spin by hand, there is no point doing anything else. Why would anyone start spending time and money on something without first checking to see what needs to be done to it?

There is a 100% chance metal rusts in 5 years. Assuming otherwise would go against not only experience but also against all common sense. Reanimate the bike correctly and this can be mitigated and cause no harm. Hand crank the motor, then spin it with the starter, and it will free up and get some oil moving around. Fire it up without doing this, and he MIGHT be OK, or he might not be. Experience tells me it is well worth the 5 minutes.

There is a 95% chance the clutch plates are stuck together after 5 years. He could assume that he is the 5% and cross his fingers, or assume he is in the 95% and address the issue. 30 minutes and a $10 gasket is a small price to pay to make sure the bike will actually go into gear once he gets it started, so why skip that step? Especially as the oil needs to be changed anyways.

Every line, hose, and rubber bit on the bike is past its life expectancy. It would be foolish to assume they are fine and not inspect them, and unsafe to not change the bad ones.

Seals in brake calipers and other equipment go bad over time, and are highly likely to split and leak when flexed for the first time in 5 years. So it would be foolish and rather dangerous to assume they are fine.

What I have described IS the minimum. I'm not even telling him to "assume the worst and plan for the best", I'm just telling him to assume his bike falls in the 95% and check for the most likely. First eliminate the possibility that the bike is not worth fixing (free, takes 5 minutes, and it helps with the initial start up anyways), then inspect everything (free, takes a couple hours), then address the most likely problems, and then get caught up on the normal maintenance and tune up things the bike needs so it is safe to ride. As this last step is the expensive and time consuming one, common sense dictates it should be left for last, that the posibility of larger issues be eliminated first, and that everything else should be done properly to avoid damaging what he is trying to restore.
 

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Take 5 minutes to put a wrench on the crankshaft. If the motor does not spin by hand, there is no point doing anything else.
Perfect. :bluethum:

I think you mis-read something I wrote........or I wrote it poorly.
My suggestion was to just take the plugs out, put some oil in and push it a few feet in gear.
If the tire skids.......you're done.
If the engine turns over.......forge ahead.
 

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Arn't we supposed to be helpful and positive?
And here we have yet another person who thinks that helpful advice must always be positive. :roll:

Sure, jump off the roof with an umbrella; it won't hurt........much.

Sometimes the best advice IS negative.

Most people take "negative" advice in the spirit in which it was given; intended to be helpful.

If YOU can't and somehow feel an obligation to turn it into a fight.........then I suggest you clam up.

After all YOUR post is about the most negative thing I've seen written on here in several months !! :fight2:
 

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Im not sure where to start but I am certainly not trying to start a fight! I am one who knows I no know very little compared to some and more than others. Seems to me, just ME, that often times when someone other than the known experts makes a suggestion sometimes the experts seem to feel threatened, or feel the need to express their all knowing side. All I'm trying to say is that if the help/advise were not so seemingly condescending it might make people feel more positive and empowered to do there own work. I personally feel often times the experts like to hold on to their seat on Mt. Olympus and fear somehow if others learn it lessons their knowledge to sum degree? And YES I feel that help/advise should be given in positive manner whenever possible! Perhaps we need to get over ourselves?
 

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Im not sure where to start but I am certainly not trying to start a fight! I am one who knows I no know very little compared to some and more than others. Seems to me, just ME, that often times when someone other than the known experts makes a suggestion sometimes the experts seem to feel threatened, or feel the need to express their all knowing side. All I'm trying to say is that if the help/advise were not so seemingly condescending it might make people feel more positive and empowered to do there own work. I personally feel often times the experts like to hold on to their seat on Mt. Olympus and fear somehow if others learn it lessons their knowledge to sum degree? And YES I feel that help/advise should be given in positive manner whenever possible! Perhaps we need to get over ourselves?
:plus1: By the way, DrBob is one of the most helpful people with good advice on this forum, some others, well you nailed it with "condescending" comment.
 

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FWIW my first bike had been in the corner of a guys garage for over 13 years before I got my hands on it. My dad and I basically did what was suggested here, oil in the cylinder. Change oil and filter. Clean air filter. New sparkplug and new battery. We didn't flush the gas tank but it didn't have any gas in it when it was parked, there was some rust inside the tank but it was very minimal. After we got it running I put a new chain and tires on it.
 

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DrBob: Above you stated: "If the motor spins with the wrench, drain the engine oil, and remove the clutch side cover. The clutch plates will more likely be stuck together- this usually happens in just a few months. You'll need to separate them, then put the cover back on with a new gasket, as the old one is nice and dried out by now."

I am about to restore a '65 Honda CA95 Dream that has been in dehumidified storage for 10 years. Engine turns over with your wrench method (oil in plug holes). How to you go about separating the wet clutch plates besides changing the oil? Would you recommend putting an ultra light weight oil for the first engine revolutions via starter...may blow some smoke, but may free up something...if so, what initial ultra light weight oil would you recommend?
Thanks and great info here!
 

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I am about to restore a '65 Honda CA95 Dream that has been in dehumidified storage for 10 years.
The climate of each region affects the condition of anything stored for an extended period of time.

In Washington, you'll hardly ever expect to see any rust inside a stored engine even with open exhaust. I lived there, and abandoned antiques look like they've been placed in a time capsule.

I live in Florida, everything rusts near the coast especially. Humid conditions, salt corrosion from the ocean, is the last place to store a motorcycle and end up with any positive results, unless you seal the intake and exhaust, and pickle the cylinders with oil ahead of time.

Each opinion relates to the area where you live, and these different areas aren't going to give you the same results.
 

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The climate of each region affects the condition of anything stored for an extended period of time.

In Washington, you'll hardly ever expect to see any rust inside a stored engine even with open exhaust. I lived there, and abandoned antiques look like they've been placed in a time capsule.
You must mean Eastern Washington....sure as hell ain't that way here on the West side,especially up on the Olympic Peninsula one of the wetest places on earth!
Down here in SW we've had about 4" of rain just this month and this isn't really the rainy season.
 

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Sometimes you can separate stuck clutch plates by putting the bike in 3d gear and rocking/ rolling it front to back several times until the plate come apart. Sometime you need to really rock the snot out of it, and wil hear a 'sprong" or "pop" as the come apart. If that does not do the trick, take off the side cover, remove the clutch bolts, and physically separate the plates by pulling them out of the basket and freeing them from each other. If you lean the bike against a wall or car bumper the oil will not come out. I do not use thin break in oil- that is for initial start up of a brand new engine only, to help wash out the assembly lube and the metal a brand-new engine sheds in the first 600 miles. Use normal oil, and spin the motor several revolutions with the wrench to get the oil up to the top end before firing it up.
 
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