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Old 02-06-2008, 11:28 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question 2001 800 RMK Hard to Pull Start

Well, here's the problem: I went to pull my starter rope on my 800 RMK, and the thing seems to "plug" over with a lot of effort. What I mean is I pull hard and then seems like its compressing really hard, then breaks loose. It sort of seems like when the pistons get to the top of the cylinders it gets really tough to pull the rope.

What I've done so far is pull the carbs and boots checking for leaks, and the reeds, pulled the pipe and looked for broken pistons/skirt, and dropped some oil down the spark plug hole to see if I could ease the pull. I held my finger on each piston and spun the clutch and everythings moving like it should--no slap or wobble either.

The problem doesn't appear to be a seized engine, as I can turn the clutch by hand with ease. I can pull the rope with the spark plugs removed and it spins like a champ. I put the plugs back in and it's hard again. It seems like there's something going on when each piston reaches the top of the stroke for compression. Like there's way too much compression or something.

I left the pipe off and tried pulling with no plugs and added some 2-stroke oil just to make sure everythings nice a lubricated. Spins like a champ. No sounds, scratching or any noise coming from the engine at all. i can hear the compression and intake stroke, and there' plenty of compression--running like 135-140 just a little less than the manual says at 145. I can even hear the suck on the reeds--oh and checked them too to make sure they weren't cracked.

I had this sort of thing happen on my 99 700 RMK last year right before I took it to the dealer for annual service. Got it back and they said they drained the engine of fuel. So thinking this might be the problem, I pulled the drain plugs and just a weep of fuel came out. Put them back in and nothings changed, all the same problems. Tried leaving them out and spins jsut as nice as with the spark plugs removed.

Maybe there's some sort of bypass going on here?
Could a leaking crank seal do this?
What about a broken piston?
I'm stumped. The shop manual says if the engine is hard to pull, the "plug" on the engine is removed or out. I have two drain holes on the sled under the exhaust pipe, but is there a "plug" somewhere else that allows air into the case?


I don't see any scoring, scratches or anything like that anywhere within the engine. I haven't pulled the jugs or the head to look in there, but I guess that's my next stop if it's not easily fixable.

2001 RMK 800
all stock
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Old 02-07-2008, 03:13 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Old 02-07-2008, 12:27 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Opps Sorry---first post. Normally I jsut read and find answers through all the conversation, but this one's got me stumped.
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Old 02-07-2008, 01:22 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Hey man, I've got the same RMK and they're are a bastard to pull because of the high compression. SLP has put out a billet handle and high strength pullcord because guys kept snapping both on the 2001 rmks. If the thing starts, you're in luck, if not I'd check your belt clearance on the primary, pull the bolts underneath the exhaust (10mm wrench) to check for flooding and get a piston light to look through the plug holes just to make sure you don't have anything on top of your pistons. Normally if you've got a blown seal on the crankshaft, you'll be running lean and it should pullover a bit easier. What kind of plugs are you running? If everything checks out and you hate using two hands to start it, consider getting new heads that don't rely on high compression to make power. I snapped 4 pullcords last year and I love putting new ones in and using the emergency pull out in the boonies. Good luck.
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Old 02-07-2008, 03:01 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Yeah it was always hard to pull, but this is something different. I can pull the cord out about a foot, but as soon as it hits that compression phase on either cylinder with the plugs in, it just stops--just about tweaking my back out. I have to pull really hard from that point on and it barely makes past the compression phase even with two feet on the floor and both arms on the handle.

I've drained the drain plugs on the crankcase and just a little drop of fuel came out.

Hope this makes some sense, but what it does is:

Thump....really realy hard/almost stops moving....thump....really hard/almost stops moving.....thump

My 700 RMK doesn't have the stopping thumps I've encountered. Yes it's hard to pull--much easier than the 800, but it doesn't have the point where the rope just about rips out of your hand while you're pulling and when it hits the compression phase.

Using the stock plugs---believe they're RNYY2 or something like that---but I know they're stock.

Maybe I'll pull the head later and see if there's anything up. The pistons and the cylinders look fine from the exahust ports. The top of the pistons look perfect. I tend to think maybe theres a broken ring letting the compression go back into the engine case and preventing the downward piston from dropping like it's suposed to.

I guess the only followup question I can ask before I dig into the thing all the way is if I remove both the drain plugs from the crank case and turn the engine over, should I feel some air coming out or sucking into one of the holes?
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Old 02-07-2008, 03:37 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Definitely, the bottom end of your crankcase with a 2 stroke engine will have fuel, oil, air sucking in and out of it if your rings are still good. I'd pull your heads and check it out, I've also heard that polaris put out a lot of bad crankshafts between 2001 and 2003 on 800s. Hopefully this isn't the case or it's gonna get expensive. I'd check out your crankshaft and if you've got a bad bearing in there or anything looks off, try sending it out to SLP for the tough boy bearing kit. I haven't had to do this but it's around $100 for the whole deal and doesn't seem like a bad option, plus for an extra $50 they'll true your crankshaft. I'm not the greatest fan of SLP because of their lack of technical support for their products, but from what I hear their machine services are pretty good.
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Old 02-08-2008, 12:44 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Update. I pulled the heads and the jugs. Everything was perfect, except the pistons, skirts, and cylinders were all really sticky. Sort of gummy like a post-it note. It felt almost gluey...like elmers thats starting to set up...

So, I smeared some oil all over and reinstalled everything. Pulled the rope and it spun a little bit easier. I then dropped a little fuel in the spark plug holes, and went yanking on it pulling the whole sled while i went. Four pulls and it popped over and died. I then went to pull the rope and it was easy as my 700 RMK. Go figure. I kept pulling and it started, so I let it run for a while and then killed it. Everything seems fine now.

I've been running the green synthetic oil, so maybe I should switch to some other type/brand to prevent this from happening again. One things for sure, I've never felt sticky oil before...
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Old 02-08-2008, 06:21 AM   #8 (permalink)
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It's not mixed with anything else, is it? If you mix some synthetics and dino oils, they can do exactly what you said.
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Old 02-08-2008, 10:42 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Don't think so. I have some synthetic green stuff in there right now. Maybe I should switch back to the polaris red. I have the VES on this engine, and it says to use oil for VES. I've always run synthetic, so maybe I need to switch what i'm using. Something that doesn't turn into honey....
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Old 02-09-2008, 10:35 AM   #10 (permalink)
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You sure your ex didn't put sugar in your gas tank?
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Old 02-09-2008, 03:31 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Or twizzlers...
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Old 02-09-2008, 04:38 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Ex lives too far away to bother with that

I pulled it over the past few days and haven't had any trouble since. I did drain that green synthetic oil in there, and dropped in some Polaris red synthetic. No problems since. Want to run it around the yard a few time before I go off trailing and in the hills--last thing I need is some help pulling me back to the trailer--its a 156"!

Any idea who makes green colored two-storke oil anyway? I though I still had one of the old jugs from what I had been using in my sleds, but the stuff that was in there was left over from end of November and I haven't ridden since. I've used amsoil, polaris, and torco in the past, but for the life of me can't remember where I got that green stuff I dumped out?

I do know it wasn't A/C oil....
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Old 02-09-2008, 04:48 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JheLrey
Or twizzlers...
wtf serious?
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Old 02-09-2008, 10:56 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by I_R_Josh
wtf serious?

There was a thread on here at one point where a guy took apart his motor due to problems and found Twizzlers... I do not remember the thread name.
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Old 02-11-2008, 03:37 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Was there any 'chalky stuff' with the green goo. This might indicate that green goo is coolant mixed with 2stoke oil. I've seen this once when someone filled up an oil reservoir with coolant at the place I work. It wasn't a very easy mistake to make because the sled was a 550 fan cooled sport touring sled, but this mixture demoed the sled and we swapped the engine our for a quick fix. Check out the o-rings on your head, make sure you don't have any cracks in your water passages and make sure you're not losing any coolant while you're running it. If everything checks out, there's a possibility someone other than you got the oil and coolant reservoirs mixed up because they are right next to eachother. I do like twizzlers though.
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Old 10-18-2009, 05:46 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Polaris sells a Green synthetic oil. I run it in my 2000 RMK 550. Its called blue marble. Pretty expensive stuff too. As for coolant, this usually breaks the oil and causes scuffing on the cylinder walls. A friend has a 500 liquid cooled that lost its water pump O-rings and this happened. Your green goo or sythetic oil is probably Blue Marble.
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Old 10-18-2009, 09:26 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Blue Marble isn't synthetic, and isn't sold by Polaris... your dealer may sell it, but it's usually sold through independent dealers, much like Amsoil is. It is definitely green, and is one oil that states not to mix with other oils.

SEG may have hit on your problem; some oils don't mix well with others. When you changed from one brand to another, there may have been some nasty chemical reaction that made the oil sticky. At any rate, glad it's up and running!

For the 800 without the VES valves, synthetic is not necessary. Synthetic oils were developed to keep the valve guillotine from getting carboned up as bad as regular oil. One very reputable Polaris shop (Indy Specialty) has seen more problems with synthetic oils than any of the regular oils, to the point that they will NOT warranty their engine bottom ends if synthetic oil is used. Indy Dan also states that there is less corrosion protection with synthetic, so if you use synthetic, make sure you fog the engine over the summer to prevent crankshaft bearing rust...
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