How to Adjust the Idle on a Pw50

Written by ryan bauer
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How to Adjust the Idle on a Pw50
Dirt bikes such as the PW50 can be adusted on the fly due to having an easily accessible carburettor. (racer 20 image by Clarence Alford from

Poor performance can be caused by an incorrectly set engine idle speed. If the motor seems to be running too quickly at a complete stop, or if it stumbles or bogs at idle, the idling speed may require adjustment. The periodic maintenance and lubrication chart in the PW50's service manual outlines specific periods which the idle speed should be checked.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Tachometer
  • Phillips-head screwdriver

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  1. 1

    Connect the red wire of a digital tachometer to the spark plug lead. Clip the black wire to any metal part of the engine. Start the motor and allow it to run for several minutes to warm up. A cold engine cannot be properly tuned.

  2. 2

    Check the idle RPM on the tachometer's readout. The idle speed should be between 1,650 and 1,750 rotations per minute. If it is not within these specifications, the speed must be adjusted.

  3. 3

    Locate the idle adjustment screw on the side of the carburettor. Use a Phillips-head screwdriver to turn the screw until the desired RPM is shown on the display. Turning the screw to the right will increase the engine speed, while turning it to the left will decrease the speed.

  4. 4

    Let the engine idle for several more minutes, then check the RPM. If it has fluctuated outside of the acceptable range, make another adjustment and continue tweaking the screw until the motor will hold the same idle speed for several minutes at a time.

Tips and warnings

  • You can tell when the engine is warmed up by quickly twisting the throttle. If the engine responds immediately, it is warm enough to adjust the idle speed.
  • If the idle speed cannot be set within the specified range using the idle adjustment screw, there is an underlying problem that needs to be addressed by a qualified mechanic.

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