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Thread: What's a tickler?

  1. #1
    Rbike
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    What's a tickler?

    I just got a 1959 R26 that appears to be in good condition. It was running 6 months ago but has been sitting without use since then. I'm gonna change the fuel and oil, and then I would like to try to start it. I just don't know what to do with the tickler...that spring lever on top of the float bowl. Do I hold it down for any certain amount of time...Or do I only push it down at a certain time when I'm starting it?

  2. #2
    Curmudgeon At Large Bobmws's Avatar
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    Basically it allows fuel into the carb for a rich mixture for cold starting since there is no choke to reduce airflow. Been awhile since my R69S, but I seem to remember holding the ticklers for a count of 3. Make sure you have spark before you try starting. Trial & error will teach you what this bike likes. Keep a spare spark plug handy while you sort it out.
    Bob Weis
    '04 K12RS - Hannigan Hack
    www.earplugco.com

  3. #3
    Cannonball Rider #52 darrylri's Avatar
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    You must master the "starting ritual", grasshopper! Every bike is a bit different, and you'll have to experiment a bit to find what yours likes.

    The tickler just pushes the carb float down so more fuel can come in. Bobmws has the basics of it right. A count of 3 is probably a good place to try; my R60/2 and R51/3 both like a bit more than that. If you flood it, hold the throttle nearly wide open and kick it until it fires.

    You should only need to use it when the bike is cold. Unless experience shows otherwise, I wouldn't touch it when the bike is warm.

    Also, I have found that these bikes want the throttle cracked just slightly when starting.
    --Darryl Richman, forum liaison
    http://darryl.crafty-fox.com

  4. #4
    James.A
    Guest
    Congratulations on the new old bike. I have an R27 which floods easily. My starting ritual for that bike is to turn on the petcock and give the bike 2 cold kicks for priming, then light up the ignition and it starts right up. I don't have to use the tickler. I have to let it warm up a little before taking off, about a minute. When starting after it is warmed up, I give it a tiny bit of throttle when kicking and it takes right off. Like Darryl says, every bike is different. That's what works for my little one-lunger.

  5. #5
    Rbike
    Guest
    Thanks for all the replys! I should get a carb kit in the mail this week and hope to try starting it for the first time this weekend.

    What oil viscosity should this engine use?

  6. #6
    Cannonball Rider #52 darrylri's Avatar
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    In that era, a straight weight, 30 or 40 weight, nondetergent oil would have been normal. I just put Castrol 20W50 in mine and don't worry about it. But you should probably know about the slinger, which is the only thing in your motor that can be considered an oil filter...
    --Darryl Richman, forum liaison
    http://darryl.crafty-fox.com

  7. #7
    Registered User lkchris's Avatar
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    A gasoline internal combustion engine requires a rich mixture for cold starting because the fuel in the fuel/air mixture separates and adheres to cold intake tract parts (manifold, etc.) rather than making it to the combustion chamber.

    To counteract this, the mixture is richened, either by reducing air, adding more fuel, or combination of both.

    When engine parts are warm, problem is solved. This is reason for heating intake air--it accelerates heating of manifold, reducing time rich, i.e. polluting, mixture is required.

    Carbs with "accelerator pumps" can accompish requirement simply by "pumping." The beauty of CV carbs is that accelerator pumps are not required. "Pumping" this throttle is solely a wrist exercising exercise.

    No need to "tickle" to start warm engine.
    Kent Christensen
    21482
    '12 R1200RT, '02 R1100S, '84 R80G/S

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