Suzuki TS185 Suggestions


Motorcycle Classics tech expert Keith Fellenstein 
Editor’s note: If you’re having trouble with that old Suzuki, BSA or BMW, Keith Fellenstein is your guy. From motorcycle tuning tips to detailed motorcycle engine repair, he can draw from a wealth of experience to help guide you to success. Send questions to: Keith’s Garage, Motorcycle Classics, 1503 SW 42nd St., Topeka, KS 66609, or send an email with “Keith’s Garage” as the subject.

Suzuki TS185 suggestions

A: A number of readers wrote in to help me with the question in the November/December issue about the Suzuki TS185. I’ll let them add what I missed in my troubleshooting. Thanks for the help, I appreciate it.

From: Gene O’Meara Jr. “I read the magazine cover to cover like most readers. I noted something that caught my attention in your column, regarding jetting issues for a reader’s TS185 and its tendency to blubber at 5/8 to full throttle. I just thought I would pass on my experience renovating a 1975 Suzuki TS250. It was having similar symptoms, and after removing and working on the carburetor more than a dozen times, I finally decided to buy a second carb from an eBay source. Sure enough, the bike exhibited the exact same symptoms and I was forced to open my thinking to other areas. Eventually I found the problem: a collapsed spark arrestor in the rear of the exhaust pipe, causing back pressure. The bike could not breathe properly. It was a little torpedo-shaped thing with twisted metal to deflect the sparks. The welds had broken after 40-plus years. So I tacked it back together and re-assembled it, and on the first test ride that bike took off like a scared cat.”

From: Tim Sickel. “In reference to the problem Steve is having, it could be that the spark arrestor in the back of the muffler needs to be cleaned or removed. Having owned three of these I found this to be a recurring issue. We would remove them and it did make a big difference in the way they ran.

From: Vincent Palazzo. “Regarding the Suzuki TS185 blubber above 5/8 throttle. I suggest checking and/or replacing the jet needle and needle jet. On old bikes these items wear due to the constant back-and-forth movement of the needle. The hole in the top of the jet needle is probably elongated, with corresponding wear on the needle jet. This causes a rich condition above 1/2 throttle that you can’t jet out unless you go so lean that you will cause the engine to seize.

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