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Dominator kick starting


My aging leg muscles are finding it more and more difficult to kick start my 650SS. Can some one tell me as to the best Norton with a Featherbed frame that is easy to maintain and work on and easy to kick start. I have looked into electric starts to no avail. I love my SS but wish I could start her without a struggle.I am not interested in high speed but appreciate good acceleration like the SS provides.


Commando with electric start,  or starter added to a 750. Otherwise, good performance and easy kickstarting are mutually exclusive.


There are compression release devices that could be fitted to your bike. One on each combustion chamber .Or one on each exhaust rocker cover . Link both to a cable splitter and control from a handlebar lever. Get a competant engineer to look into it. In the meantime get a longer kickstart lever , fit a compression plate under the barrel, the biggest engine sprocket that will fit in the alternator basket and compensate for the increased overall gearing by fitting a smaller gearbox sprocket . The kickstart/engine gearing will be changed by this and help. A single carb may also improve starting and reduce flooding as they are not so downdraught.Switch to a fully synthetic 10/40 engine oil . It will make starting easier and still provide good protection from its very superior performance. Not everyone will agree with this !!.


Hi Roger sorry to hear this. I m happy to come over and set it up accurately for you.  This machine is not a poor starter. There must be an underlying reason why you are having trouble. Is it roadworthy at present?


best regards





Any single with a valve lifter should be easy peasy to start. Following a serious carving up in hospital, my B31 was the only bike I could manage for a while. So a Model 50 or ES2 would fit the bill. Alternatively, you could fit an 88 engine. They go well and are a doddle to kick over.


If you search this forum, you'll find suggestions for adding a chain saw decompressor.  Allegedly it has been done.  But nobody offered personal experience.  Is there any?


... with the single cylinder suggestion. My ES2 with 8.5:1 compression starts very easily with the correct technique and the legendary long swinging kick. The trouble with twins as said is getting over compression.


i m surprised no one mentions the long bar method. i suppose its a bit unsightly but in my youth i saw a ariel combination with a hand held long bar and always reminded me of the old manual type slot machines. the ariel owner was an old boy with a poor leg i assume. you could always try an extension onto the existing kick lever and stow the bar somewhere. 


Hello Roger.

                    You may find this part N° 050179 of use from RGM Norton, if you read the blurb it relates to suitability for various fittings.

Oh Jon thanks so much for your reply. However I suspect it is me that's the problem not the bike but yes you would be most welcome to come over show me the technique that would suit me. I made some modifications to make it better for me such as mirrors, indicators and a side stand and the bike is road worthy.

Sorry I had not replied earlier but only just read your reply. Somewhere I have your mobile number so I shall give you a ring. Thanks so much for your offer of help.

Best regards



Thank you Ian and I realise now that it is technique that is needed with a mentor. I am so grateful that offer of help has been made by Jon.

Thank you so much for your suggestions Robert  but I wish not to make such modifications as I think now its technique in kick starting  that's required but I appreciate your effort to help resolve the problem.


How about getting one of thos MOTORCYCLE ROLLERS RACING PADDOCK STARTERS?  This would make cold starting much easier and save the leg for later on.


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