How to Fix and Adjust Motorcycle Throttle Cables

The motorcycle throttle cables are two steel cables that run from the grip of the throttle to the engine in order to open and close the carburetor. There are two cables: the front cable and the idle hand throttle cable. Essentially, these are how you make the motorcycle go, as an accelerator pedal in a car makes the car move. It is important to be able to adjust and fix the cables if they are sticking and also be able to lubricate them and prevent them from sticking.

Step 1 – Lift the Motorcycle

Put the motorcycle onto a lift in such a way that it stands flat on the ground. This is important for viewing and safety purposes.

Step 2 – Loosen Cables

Use wrenches on the adjusters to loosen the throttle cables. The adjusters look like steel nuts around the cables. Back the screws all the way out.

Step 2 – Remove Switch Housing

Switch housing looks like a black box on the handlebar.  Use the socket wrench with the appropriate bit to unscrew the bolt located underneath the switch housing. Once the bolt is out, put it into a safe place, and open up the switch housing box.

Step 3 -Apply Lube

Apply Inox or any other related lube made for throttle cables. These lubricants can be found at any after market stores or Harley Davidson dealerships. Insert the lubricant into the cable end. Squeeze a few drops into the front cable and the idle hand throttle cable located behind it.

Step 4 – Reattach Switch Housing

Reattach the switch housing box with the socket wrench. Open the throttle all the way. Do this for adjustment purposes.

Step 5 – Level out the Carburetor

With the throttle open all the way, adjust the throttle cable closest to the bike all the way out. As it is close to being all the way out, keep adjusting it until the butterfly on the carburetor or intake manifold is completely level.

Step 6 – Test Your Work

Take the bike off the lift and put it on its kick stand. Turn handle bars all the way to the left then open the throttle all of the way. It should snap back. It should make an audible snapping noise. Repeat this test by turning the handle bars all the way to the right and to the center and both times opening the throttle and listening to it snap back. If it does not snap back, take the throttle cable adjustment a little bit more in until it does snap back. If it does not snap back at any time, it can get stuck when you are actually driving.

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