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Discussion Starter #1
Looking for some help on why what I did actually seemed to resolve the problem.

2009 Wee. Usually ride to work every day. Parked it in the garage for 2-3 weeks due to work schedule and a few other factors. Ready to ride again so I suited up one morning, backed it out of the garage and attempted to start it. Cranked but would not start. Back into the garage. Over the next two weekends got a (very) little bit of time to check things out. Battery seemed fine but put it on the tender just to be sure. Even tried jumping from a car battery to remove the battery from consideration. Pulled one plug and verified I'm getting spark. Thought I smelled fuel so thought that was OK. Tried opening the throttle while cranking. No go. Added some Stabil having read some threads about condensation. Didn't seem to help.

Next weekend tried again. Put it in dealer mode. Got C00 so nothing there. Eventually started to pull the tank to get to the air filter. Since I hadn't done that before, pulled the service manual to see how to do that. And read about a few other things that could be checked. Decided I wasn't up to doing those that day so parked it for another week. Then remembering in one of the threads someone mentioned adding fuel, quick trip to the gas station for a gallon. Pour that in and try starting again. Nothing with throttle in idle position so try opening it up. Got a kick from the motor on that one. Keep trying. Eventually starts (yay) but dies when I release the throttle. So try it keeping the throttle open. Manage to get it started and keep it going (though running rough). Keep the throttle open a bit until it starts to warm up. Notice a bunch of light colored "smoke" coming out the exhaust. Get a bar on the temp gauge, release the throttle and it keeps running. Smoke is gone. Power off. Start it again. Absolutely no problems. Repeat. Same favorable result. Appears I'm good to go. And it has gotten me to and from work with no issues this week.

Filled with gas on the way home last night and based on what I put in I think I had 1-1.5 gallons in the tank while it was parked.

So, what was the issue? Why did adding the gallon of fuel appear to resolve the issue (BTW - I fill up at the same station which is a high volume Fred Meyer location - but no, not Top Tier gas) Could it have been condensation after only a few weeks? Any other suggestions?

Thanks
 

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I would suspect the battery. At least my fist bike developed the same problem after sitting for a while. Ready to go on a trip, everything loaded, suited up etc. ... crank ... but did not fire.

I then used the brutal approach, full throttle and just cranking and eeeeeventually it would cough and finally get going. Then it would re-start during the whole trip without a problem, even over night.

The same would repeat itself next trip. I don't ride the bike daily. Before going on a multi K mile trip out west I thought I better change that old battery not to get stranded somewhere. The bike started well again from then onwards, just like it used to in the past. No idea why but that cured the issue for me and I did not research it any further.

The cranking battery voltage of the new battery was distinctly higher than the old but I can't remember the actual numbers. The bike did not seem to be cranking poorly with the old battery, that's why I did not suspect the battery.
 

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FORUM GODFATHER.....R.I.P. PAT
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It is probably flooded. Always start with the throttle closed but, if it doesn't fire right away, open the throttle until it does and hold the throttle there.
 

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3 weeks is enough time for Ethanol to ruin your day. It's 90-100 days under ideal conditions, but if there is any water present, the phase separation can occur or begin in 3 weeks depending on how much water. In the future, if you know the bike will be down for more that two weeks, treat your fuel with any of the ethanol killing additives like Sea Foam, Stabil, etc.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
@greywolf - I would not have thought it could be flooded after sitting for 3 weeks. On the other hand, after trying to start it with the throttle closed, I did try cranking it open in case it had happened as a result of trying to start. My mistake in those attempts was not holding the throttle open until it started. Thank you for that bit of advise.

@Motor7 - Yeah, the key there is "If you know...". I didn't. It just kind of worked out that way. But now I know that if it looks like a possibility, I need to either top off the tank or put in a stabilizer just in case it sits longer than expected. Thank you for the confirmation that I might not be crazy to think condensation could be a problem in that short time period.
@blaustrom - Battery was the first thing I thought of. Put it on the tender for a week. Tried jumping from a car battery. Didn't notice any difference. While I'm not sure that is the problem in this case, it is an older battery (ok, it is the original battery!) so it is a concern.
 

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The only time mine didn't start right away, it ended up being the fuel pump. Don't let that scare you, I bought a new one on Ebay for $14.95. Not China junk either, it was made in Japan.

They're not hard to replace, lots of youtube videos on how to do it. Take pics of fuel pump assy. before you disassemble so you'll know how it goes back together. If there is fire, it will run if it's getting fuel. You're not going to get that much condensation in 3 weeks from a gallon and a half of fuel. Intermittent fuel pump problems can drive you crazy, and factory pumps have been plaguing stroms. No harder than they are to replace and as cheap as they are, there's no reason not to replace the fuel pump if the problem rears its ugly head again.
 

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@blaustrom - Battery was the first thing I thought of. Put it on the tender for a week. Tried jumping from a car battery. Didn't notice any difference. While I'm not sure that is the problem in this case, it is an older battery (ok, it is the original battery!) so it is a concern

If its the original battery, get a new one. It's unavoidable in any case and at least that way you can rule this aspect out. Sounds very much what I found. My battery was most of the time on the battery tender (I think that's why it lasted as long as it did) but that did not prevent the issues I had.

I find it hard to believe you can have that much condensation in 15 - 20 temperature cycles to be the cause, but, I have been wrong before. Keep us posted what you find.
 
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