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As I was riding around today I stopped to check who was calling me on my cellphone when my 1998 arctic cat zl500 started sounding weaker as it was idoling, I gave it some gas and it was bogging out, then i heard one or two little banging noises coming from the engine. Then I thought it might be a good idea to turn it off, but it wouldn't go off. I took the key out and watched as it eventually died out. (took about 10 - 15 seconds to die out, but it probably would've anyways even if i didn't press the stop button) I tried running it a few more times, but the same thing happened, finally after I call for a ride it starts running perfectly. What do you think this problem was? Should I worry about it? Just for a little extra information the sled has 3700 original kms. and it was rebuilt 500 km. ago, so the engine is in pretty good shape. Can it be the spark plugs? Overheating?

So I replaced the plugs, and it already had premium gas in it from mohawk... any ideas what the problem might be? I don't think it's overheating because it happened as I was starting it up days later. Can it be that my carbs and air filter is a bit dirty?... gas lines frozen... so many possibilities, maybe i should bring it to a shop and pay the big $$
 

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oldslowsledder
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Was it still running or perhaps dieseling, a condition where the heat of the combustion chamber ignites the fuel mixture. That would explain the rattling noise. Just guessing here.
 

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Was it still running or perhaps dieseling, a condition where the heat of the combustion chamber ignites the fuel mixture. That would explain the rattling noise. Just guessing here.[/b]
That's what I was thinking, check to see if your plugs are all black.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
That's what I was thinking, check to see if your plugs are all black.[/b]
Yeah the Spark Plugs weren't looking too good, and yes when I pushed the stop button it ran for maybe 10-15 seconds then died off, but it probably would've taken that long to die off even if i didn't press stop. I'll try changin the spark plugs, and throwin a rope in the back of my sled for when I go riding next! Does anyone else have any other ideas of what the problem might be?
 

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Bad gas is my first thought. Although deiseling could be caused by quite a few things, I would start running premium immediately and I'd feel much safer. That alone could cure the problem, whatever it may be. Double check that you are running the correct spark plugs. If you're already running premium, check for intake or exhaust leaks. I wouldn't take this lightly, it makes me think your engine is trying to burn down. If you were running old gas that's been sitting in the tank since last winter...and it was regular to begin with...I'd say that's your problem.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Bad gas is my first thought. Although deiseling could be caused by quite a few things, I would start running premium immediately and I'd feel much safer. That alone could cure the problem, whatever it may be. Double check that you are running the correct spark plugs. If you're already running premium, check for intake or exhaust leaks. I wouldn't take this lightly, it makes me think your engine is trying to burn down. If you were running old gas that's been sitting in the tank since last winter...and it was regular to begin with...I'd say that's your problem.[/b]
Thanks for your thoughts, I just filled it up with premium, and I replaced the plugs and the problem is still occuring, any other ideas? I was thinking maybe my carbs and air filter are a little bit dirty...
 

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How about the kill switch? I know sometimes if it goes bad it will kill the sled. Could it go bad and not allow it to turn off?
 

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I would also check the ground connections at the recoil assembly, the ground at the exhaust box, and the ground at the steering post.
I know some people will balk at this, but you are throwing money away with premium in that sled. I have the exact same sled, it calls for 87 octane fuel. It is designed, timed, and compression levels are set for 87 octane. You are putting a fuel in it that is to hard to ignite and burns to cool for the motor.
If you have higher than stock compression, a pipe, or other mods that may increase cylinder temps, then premium is worth it, otherwise you are not doing your self any favors.

If you do have water in the gas it lowers the fuels volatility, by adding premium you are adding a fuel with lower volatility than 87 or 89 octane and you may be compounding the problem. Use some dry gas to remove the moisture or drain and re-fill with new fuel.

Oh, and I do teach fuel and emissions systems and computer controls for a great technical school so this is not just an opinion, I have had a lot of training and experience with both automotive and toy fuel control systems.

Take it for what its worth,
 
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