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My dad gave my son his old XL250 that has been sitting in a garage/barn close to salt water for the last 20 years...with the head off.....:icon_mad:My boy is stoked to get it & see if the ol girl still can run. Got her all back together and she won't start. We filed and re-gapped the points (have spark), we cleaned out the carb, but two things seem off. When I kick her over, I get positive pressure out the carb and when we turn the gas on, no fuel is getting the the carb. Tried a squirt of starting fluid, nothing. Fuel shut off works (pulled the fuel line off and gas flows). I'm thinking that when the head was off, the timing chain dropped off the lower sprocket and were all jacked up with timing issues. I figure that's why the positive pressure in the carb (am I thinking correct)? Not to sure why the fuel isn't filling up the float bowl. Any help would be super cool. He's pretty bummed this bike isn't on the road yet.
 

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American Legion Rider
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23,521 Posts
Did you change the fuel lines or use the old. Could be gunk stopping the fuel in an old line. The other possibility is the floats and the little pin valve it uses(needle valve?) isn't moving and opening up or just not adjusted correctly so it will. It's been a long time since I was in a carb and that was on a car.:) I haven't even been into one on any tractor.:(
 

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Ghost in the machine
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As Hog said, the fuel issue is most likely (for now) a stuck float needle valve. I would strongly suggest removing the carb and giving it a proper cleaning. This does not mean just spraying some carb cleaner in there and calling it clean. It means COMPLETE dis-assembly and cleaning all jets and ports.
The bigger issue is WHY the head was taken off in the first place. Before kicking it over again I would double check the timing marks so you don't damage the piston or valves. Once you correct the timing issue I would next do a compression test (cheap and easy) to be sure the rings and top end gaskets are fine.
Finally, I would clean the tank and replace the fuel line and filter (also cheap and easy).
Once you've completed those actions you should at least get it to fire. From there you can start to diagnose any further issues.
 
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