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Starting the XR650R » Honda XR650R Parts, Service, and Repair
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Starting the XR650R

If you’re new to the Honda XR650R you may be finding yours difficult to start. An XR650R can be hard to start for a variety of reasons:

  • Improper jetting
  • Incorrect fuel mixture screw setting
  • Incorrect idle adjustment
  • Valves clearances out of adjustment
  • Clogged or damaged air filter

If you believe any of those reasons to be the problem there is plenty of information available on this site about how to remedy them.

BUT – If everything is ok, there is a common procedure for starting the Big Pig. If you don’t follow this procedure you may have trouble. Every bike is setup a little different, and the environment will play a role to a certain extent (temperature, humidity, elevation). However, below is the starting procedure that I recommend, and is recommended by many other owners as well.

It sounds like a lot but it will become second nature. Using this procedure an XR650R should start up 1st kick every single time.

CONDITION: COLD ENGINE (COLD START)

  • Turn on the fuel and put the bike in neutral
  • Turn on the choke (lift the choke lever up)
  • Pull in the manual compression release lever (left hand, on clutch perch)
  • Pull out the kickstarter and kick the motor through briskly 3-5 times
  • Release the manual compression release lever
  • ** Slowly and gently kick the motor until you reach Top Dead Center (kick starter has strong resistance)
  • Pull in the manual compression release lever
  • Slowly and gently push the kickstarter a couple inches to push the piston past TDC
  • Release the manual compression release lever
  • Return the kickstarter to the top of it’s stroke
  • Give one good solid kick making sure to follow through all the way to the end of the stroke
  • If the engine doesn’t start repeat starting at (**)

CONDITION: WARM ENGINE (HOT START)

  • Pull in the manual compression release lever (left hand, on clutch perch)
  • Hold the throttle completely open (full throttle)
  • Pull out the kickstarter and kick the motor through briskly 3-5 times
  • Release the manual compression release lever
  • Close the throttle completely
  • ** Slowly and gently kick the motor until you reach Top Dead Center (kick starter has strong resistance)
  • Pull in the manual compression release lever
  • Slowly and gently push the kickstarter a couple inches to push the piston past TDC
  • Release the manual compression release lever
  • Return the kickstarter to the top of it’s stroke
  • Give one good solid kick making sure to follow through all the way to the end of the stroke
  • If the engine doesn’t start repeat starting at (**)

My bike fires right up – does yours!?


Starting the XR650R with sandals:

Starting the XR650R with bare feet:

  • #1 written by Mal
    about 5 years ago

    Each to there own but the above starting methods seem long winded and more wear and tear on kick start mechinism, yes find hard spot pull in decamp lever go down 1/4 to 1/2 an inch and bring back up to spot where you hit TDC and “push” kickstart lever down – says same in manual – no need to do it with force. If does not start efficently could be one of the points you made above, in particular the idle speed which should be 1400 RPM.

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