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Old June 7th, 2022, 12:55 AM   #1
Mauricemonge
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Advancing ignition timing (has anyone else done this?)

Hey all, in the quest for an extra mile per hour or two, I have advanced my ignition timing 4.5 degrees for a total of 46.5 degrees full advance, I’m worried it’s a bit much, but I’m going to play with jetting in the morning and see what the plugs look like. I’m running 91 octane in hopes to prevent detonation.

I’ve jetted up pretty big with the pod filter and 2-1 exhaust. I currently have a #40 pilot, 2 shims under the needle, and a 115 main. My plug chop is looking lean at the moment and I know I only have one larger main jet (118) in the kit I bought. It seems to be running good at the moment now that I’ve fixed a petcock vacuum leak, it really picked up power in the 6000-8000 rpm range, though that may have been because of fresh plugs and a vacuum fix. It just looks a bit lean so I’ll see what it looks like with a bigger main.

Anyway, I’m wondering if anyone has filed down their woodruff key on their pre-gen for more timing advance? Did anyone have good results?

I’m planning to drive this bike (and the attached sidecar) to Colorado next week, and I want to get in some miles and maybe advice from anyone who has played with timing.

Maurice
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Old June 7th, 2022, 08:08 AM   #2
jcgss77
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Interesting post. I found this that you may want to read. Looks like to really get the gains for this mod, you will need to convert to fuel injection.
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Old June 7th, 2022, 04:56 PM   #3
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You're close to maximum-timing anyway. Similar mod is to install '88-94 pre-gen ignitor. Which has 7-degrees more ignition than '08-12 new-gen. More won't give you much even if you bump up octane to 117. Full exhaust will give you +22% +6bhp. About as fast as 300. Even better to increase compression and displacement. Way, way more gains than anything else. People have gotten double factory power this way.

Here's chart of bone-stock 250 with snorkel removed. It's got way, way too much fuel anyway. Your carbs are most likely dirty and clogged. Need complete carb disassembly and restoration... And get a wideband, reading tea-leaves gets expensive with buying new plugs for each run.

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Old June 7th, 2022, 05:30 PM   #4
Mauricemonge
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You're close to maximum-timing anyway. More won't give you much even if you bump up octane to 117. Full exhaust will give you +22% +6bhp. About as fast as 300. Even better to increase compression and displacement. Way, way more gains than anything else. People have gotten double factory power this way.

Here's chart of bone-stock 250 with snorkel removed. It's got way, way too much fuel anyway. Your carbs are most likely dirty and clogged. Need complete carb disassembly and restoration... And get a wideband, reading tea-leaves gets expensive with buying new plugs for each run.

I guess I should have said I have a Pre-gen. It’s a 95, but I think the timing is already advanced much mote than the 08+ ninjas.

I worked hard before to get the jetting just right 3 years ago when I first put the sidecar on. The K&N filter that covers both carbs did great for flow and evening out the air a bit. I initially had a 118 main jet when I put emgo shorty mufflers on my exhaust, but they did nothing for actual sound deadening or back pressure and were brutally loud. After a couple weeks I put a 2-1 exhaust and a gsxr 1000 can I had lying around, it reduced a lot of noise, and gave me some back pressure, and I brought the main down to 115 since it was running a bit rich.

My carbs are squeaky clean, I ride this thing a ton, and a lot of fresh fuel goes through them.

You’re right about the power increase from the exhaust and intake. It had significant gains at first. I’m hoping to take this to bonneville this fall to set the sidecar 250cc record, and was hoping I could find some who had tried bumping the timing more.


I put in my 118 jets this afternoon and took it on the freeway. It does go faster from before by about 2mph, but I don’t know if the side wind was aiding me or hindering me. And again, I fixed a vacuum leak so it may have been what was robbing me of power. I still can’t get any color at the end of my porcelain, and it looks as if it’s still lean. I haven’t cut them open yet though. I didn’t think advancing the timing would call for that much more fuel, but I’ll have to order even bigger jets until I can see it in the plug. I do have a wideband O2 sensor on my turbo nitrous Subaru powered vw bug, I’ll see how hard it’ll be to swap that over to the bike, might not be worth it.
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Old June 7th, 2022, 09:15 PM   #5
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Ah pre-gen... '95-07 ignitors had 38-degree advance so you're at 42.5 now. You can re-pin the connector and use '88-94 ignitor for 42-degree igntion.

Use the wideband, you'd be amazed at how much more accurate it is than reading-plugs, which is just an average. Especially if it has datalogging. Just do couple runs at different throttle-openings, dump memory and draw pretty graphs. I find I usually have to adjust in opposite directions, remove fuel in some areas while increasing in others.
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Old June 7th, 2022, 10:23 PM   #6
Mauricemonge
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DannoXYZ View Post
Ah pre-gen... '95-07 ignitors had 38-degree advance so you're at 42.5 now. You can re-pin the connector and use '88-94 ignitor for 42-degree igntion.

Use the wideband, you'd be amazed at how much more accurate it is than reading-plugs, which is just an average. Especially if it has datalogging. Just do couple runs at different throttle-openings, dump memory and draw pretty graphs. I find I usually have to adjust in opposite directions, remove fuel in some areas while increasing in others.
Oh dude, thanks for the info! I looked but didn't see that ignition info floating around.

Iíll see if I can get a wideband hooked up.
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Old June 8th, 2022, 06:58 AM   #7
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Here's connector pin-out info for adapting early pre-gen ignitors onto late-pregen bikes. Just move terminals around in connector. https://www.ninjette.org/forums/showthread.php?t=372256
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Old June 8th, 2022, 07:12 AM   #8
Mauricemonge
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DannoXYZ View Post
Ah pre-gen... '95-07 ignitors had 38-degree advance so you're at 42.5 now. You can re-pin the connector and use '88-94 ignitor for 42-degree igntion.

Use the wideband, you'd be amazed at how much more accurate it is than reading-plugs, which is just an average. Especially if it has datalogging. Just do couple runs at different throttle-openings, dump memory and draw pretty graphs. I find I usually have to adjust in opposite directions, remove fuel in some areas while increasing in others.
So Iíve been looking around, and I canít seem to find any info saying that my advance is only 38 degrees.

The owners manual says itís 42, and I found something else that looked official saying the same. Do you have a thread, or more info on this?

https://ownersmanuals2.com/kawasaki/...s-manual-52704

Itís on page 9, says 10 degrees at 1300 rpm, 5 for CA bikes, and 42 degrees at 4500

Maurice
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Old June 13th, 2022, 10:34 AM   #9
Mauricemonge
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DannoXYZ View Post
Ah pre-gen... '95-07 ignitors had 38-degree advance so you're at 42.5 now. You can re-pin the connector and use '88-94 ignitor for 42-degree igntion.

Use the wideband, you'd be amazed at how much more accurate it is than reading-plugs, which is just an average. Especially if it has datalogging. Just do couple runs at different throttle-openings, dump memory and draw pretty graphs. I find I usually have to adjust in opposite directions, remove fuel in some areas while increasing in others.
Looks like ninjette site goes down intermittently, I wasnít able to post.
I jetting all the way up to a 125 main. It felt rich and I was slowing down. I went back down to a 120 and it feels good, but it still blows my mind that a jet that big even works. Unfortunately I donít have time to get a wideband on it before I leave for my 1,250 mile Colorado trip. But Iíll try to get some fresh plugs and chop them at different running loads and rpmís. Iíll also bring a set of jets to Colorado, Iíll be heading up pikes peak (14,000í) and I may need to jet down for that.
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Old July 3rd, 2022, 08:09 AM   #10
Mauricemonge
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Update, I rode this 3000 miles to Colorado and back to California before melting a piston.

I bought an o2 gauge while in Colorado to help me with jetting. I ran a 115 main with no shims and a #40 idle screwed out 2.5 turns. I learned that the idle adjustments affect the entire rpm range significantly. It was cool to see it on the gauge. It was a decent jet for 5000 feet, but would have gone leaner up high (pikes peak was 14k).

Coming down the mountain I jetted bigger, but a thunderstorm killed my gauge, and the engine had been running weird for awhile. When I got down to Bakersfield, the engine was running amazing: 118 main, 2 shims, 40 pilot, 2.75 screws out. But I knew I was probably at the limit of lean. I hopped back on the freeway with 99 degree ambient temps, and a piston let go. That piston was having problems for about 1500 miles, but it finally went.


In conclusion, yes you can advance your timing. Yes I did feel that it picked up more mid range, but can’t say it made more power up top. But I did kill it, and I’m not sure this would be best for a daily driver, but I likely ran lean.

My engine was a $100 “mystery motor”, that when I bought it, the valves were so tight, it would only run for 5 minutes before losing compression, then stall at idle and not be able to be started again until cooled. I had no issues experimenting on this since it gave me over 3 hard years with a sidecar.

I’ll be swapping in a 500cc engine in soon
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Old July 3rd, 2022, 04:27 PM   #11
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Iíll be swapping in a 500cc engine in soon
Sorry about the piston issue, but that last statement is very interesting. I have seen threads about doing this very swap. Do you already have your plan, like will the 250 trans work with the 500 engine? Will we be able to enjoy a build thread?
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Old July 3rd, 2022, 04:36 PM   #12
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Transmission is built into engine case. It swaps in with engine.
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Old July 5th, 2022, 09:01 AM   #13
Mauricemonge
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Sorry about the piston issue, but that last statement is very interesting. I have seen threads about doing this very swap. Do you already have your plan, like will the 250 trans work with the 500 engine? Will we be able to enjoy a build thread?
I actually like that my epic 3000 mile trip ended with me melting the piston. Iíll have post some photos if I can figure it out.

Iím usually terrible about taking pictures, but Iíll try to make a video this time of my progress. I bought the engines like 3 years ago, and it looks like I already started prepping them a bit.
Iíll probably do a build thread after the swap is complete, so I can do it all in one post.
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Old July 5th, 2022, 09:29 AM   #14
Mauricemonge
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https://photos.app.goo.gl/VU8viCXvtCDSEZDg7
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