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Thread: Sportcity 250 Cube Engine Dying

  1. #1
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    Sportcity 250 Cube Engine Dying

    Hello all,
    I've got a 2009 Sportcity 250 Cube with 11,500 miles. I'll describe what's going on as there are several things which may or may not be connected.

    1. The bike normally starts up fine. But sometimes, when I push the start button, nothing happens. The bike is on, lights, sensor lights, etc are all working, but nothing at all happens when I push the starter button. So, I turn it off and on several times, toggle the run switch, and eventually it starts up. This has been going on some time.

    2. The engine has now started shutting off randomly. Yesterday this happened while riding while the bike was warm, which had never happened before. Before the motor cut out, the bike had been bogging down and losing power and acting as though it were going to die. I started it up today and it ran with no apparent problerms. In the past, it had done this, but normally only when it was cold.


    I've replaced the starter button, but it still won't start up sometimes (have to toggle the run switch or turn it off and on). The bike didn't have this problem when I bought 5,000 miles ago. Any ideas as to what it might be? Thanks.
    Last edited by yves55; 07-14-2019 at 05:30 PM.

  2. #2
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    The engine kill switch can get corroded inside and cause that. Once they get really bad just bumping the grips on the handlebars can kill the engine.

    Do you leave the bike outside or in a carport and ride a lot in the rain, etc or have it in an enclosed garage when your not riding it?

    At 11,500 miles the engine should be just about broken in. Well maintained some users here have reported well over 50,000 miles with some at over 100,000 miles on theirs.

  3. #3
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    Hmmm, I have noticed that just barely touching the kill switch can cause it to shut off. I've considered that possibility. I guess I'll have to buy that part next. Thanks Rocky, appreciate it.

    One other thing. Oil has been mysteriously disappearing from the engine. I thought it was burning it. Then I realized I didn't have the o-ring on the dipstick (outer o-ring, not the rubber seal on the lower part) I just put a new one on, but haven't ridden much since then. Do you think not having that o-ring could cause a loss of oil?

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by yves55 View Post
    Hmmm, I have noticed that just barely touching the kill switch can cause it to shut off. I've considered that possibility. I guess I'll have to buy that part next. Thanks Rocky, appreciate it.

    One other thing. Oil has been mysteriously disappearing from the engine. I thought it was burning it. Then I realized I didn't have the o-ring on the dipstick (outer o-ring, not the rubber seal on the lower part) I just put a new one on, but haven't ridden much since then. Do you think not having that o-ring could cause a loss of oil?
    Yes the oil can get blow out and over into the CVT cover if the dipstick seal is missing. The belt can fail catastrophically from this and do a lot of damage to the timing cover seal and oil pan gasket.

    Not sure about the seal and o-ring your referencing as the OEM dipstick for just about every Aprilia/Vespa/Piaggio has just the one OEM Aprilia O-Ring -#479986 (ex 8550417) (479986):
    https://www.af1racing.com/store/Scri...idProduct=7292



    My 2009 Sport City has 30,000 miles on it and burns no oil. If you are loosing oil then its time to look for leaks and to check the valve adjustment since having the valves too loose can throw the valve timing off enough to cause excessive crankcase pressures and oil losses. The Oil Pan Gasket hidden by the CVT cover can leak as can the oil drain plug o-ring which is suppose to be replaced with a new one every 6,000 miles and the oil filter seal. The valve cover gasket should also be checked along with the valve cover bolt seals/grommets.

  5. #5
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    Thanks for the reply Rocky. Ah, okay, there is only one seal on the dipstick. I bought a gasket and added it to the top, just in case mine was missing. I probably have a leak or need a valve adjustment. How often should the valves be adjusted?

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by yves55 View Post
    Thanks for the reply Rocky. Ah, okay, there is only one seal on the dipstick. I bought a gasket and added it to the top, just in case mine was missing. I probably have a leak or need a valve adjustment. How often should the valves be adjusted?
    The o-ring at the threads tends to get hard and flattened to a taper after a while making it more difficult to screw it all the way down to get a good seal. If the belt every failed completely there is a good chance that the oil pan/cup/sump gasket just below the variator was damaged too and may also need replacing. If you see oil seeping onto the cooling fins of the oil pan under the dipstick that could be an indicator that the gasket needs replacing. Its a good idea to check and ensure that there is no excess gasket material sticking up under the variator as the belt can grab it pulling a portion of the gasket out and cause a leak. Many will trim that gasket flush with the casting using a razor blade after making sure its properly torqued as per the Service Station Manual which is available for download from most Aprilia Dealers for less than $10 and is money well spent.

    How often to check the valve adjustment depends on the grade of fuel you use. If you use only mid grade or premium then you check them at every other scheduled oil change. Its a moderately high compression engine at 11 to 1 compression so regular is not the best for the valve seats in it and will cause them to sink faster. If you only use Premium you may find that even at the specified 12,500 mile interval the valves will pass inspection and may not actually need adjusting until 25,000 miles however if lower grade fuels have been used and its been run for long runs on the Interstate you may find it will be past due for adjustment at 12,500 miles. Be thankful that these engines are not like some of the others out there that require a valve adjustment check every 500 miles.

    Its all in the owners manual which I know some sellers loose or throw away moments after they buy a new bike or leave stashed somewhere in storage and do not pass on to the next owner.

    Anyways its usually a very clean engine and if you have oil residue showing on it then you need to chase it down and fix the leak. Be sure you are only using the specified 4T 10W-40 Full Synthetic Motorcycle Grade engine oil and 75W-90 Full Synthetic Gear Lube in it every 6,250 miles changing the oil filter, oil screen o-ring, oil plug o-ring and transmission drain plug seal at the same time.

    Every time you check the valve clearance the valve cover gasket and bolt seals also need to be replaced.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rockynv View Post
    The o-ring at the threads tends to get hard and flattened to a taper after a while making it more difficult to screw it all the way down to get a good seal.
    I think this was the issue. I replaced the entire oil dipstick and it seems to seal tighter. Also have noticed less oil loss.

    Also, just did the variator belt service and the variator weights at 11,850 miles. Pretty sure it was the first time done. No delaming the belt, but the weights were pretty worn. The bike accelerates much better and smoother now.

    Thank you Rocky of Nevada may the lights of the Las Vegas Strip fall upon you like tears of joy from jackpot-winning gamblers

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