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So we finally got some decent snow here and decided to get my '97 ZR440 out on the snow. It never made it out last year due to lack of snow. I pulled the carbs and cleaned them out, they were filthy. I put them back together and got it to run, but ran rough seemed like only on one side. I changed plugs and messed around with it for a couple hours. Came to the conclusion that I had spark on both sides, but only running on the Mag side. I pulled the PTO side carb again and noticed the needle looked like it was sticking and not letting fuel in. I sprayed some carb cleaner and air and got it to free up. I put it back together and the sled fired right up. I took it for a run around the field and it ran pretty good. On the way back to the shop I opened it up and it fell on it's face and acted like I lost a cylinder again. I limped it back to the shop and let it set, I started it up again and it fired up fine again, took it out again and the same thing happened. So I'm guessing the needle is still sticking and at lower speed it can keep up, but when you open it up, it must be sticking and it can't keep the fuel flow going.

So here's my question: How can I removed the needle and seat and really clean it out or replace it if required? The float lever is in the way, can I press the pin that the float lever pivots on out to remove that? I didn't want to wreck it without asking first, but it looks like you need to remove that pin to get at the needle and seat. Thanks for any info! I was hoping to ride tomorrow, but looks like I'll be digging into the carb again first...
 

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You will have to push that pin out to get access to the needle and seat. Make sure you put something behind the post that the pin goes thru so you sont snap it off trying to push/tap the pin thru
 
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You can carefully clean the bore of the seat with a set of brushes they sell for cleaning paint spray guns. Have to be careful not to nick the actual seat surface with the wire part of the brush. Or, get a piece of scotch brite pad ( paint dept) to twist in there. For the needle, I have carefully ran a needle file or scotch brute on the outside surfaces. Be careful not to damage the rubber tip on the needle. You only need to do a very little bit to clean it up. Only do this with the needle and seat removed.
 

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If one needle valve is sticking I'd personally clean/replace both. I'm not big on replacing things as the nearest shop is a couple of hours drive away.
Make sure your floats aren't sticking, they run the needle valve if the floats are heavy or the pin they slide on is gummed up they may not be working properly.
I usually use a set of slip joint pliers to remove the pin and float plate. I open them up far enough to put on the opposite side of the pin so I'm not pushing on the supports but rather pushing on the end of the pin and holding the other support with the other jaw of the pliers. You should be able to clean them out, it may just be a piece of crap or varnish under the seat.
Hope you get her running...
 
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