Basic Diablo Care

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Basic Diablo Care

Postby Schoobytwo (Bruce) » Sat Jun 26, 2010 7:37 pm

Hi all,

I'm drafting out a little document to post for Diablo Owners who do not have a lot of experience with these machines. If you would, please take a look at the information below and give me some feedback about what I may have missed or if you have better or other ideas. I sure would value your feedback.

Thank you in advance,


Bolens Diablo Care

In addition to information found in the manuals, here are some suggestions to care for your Diablo.


Cold Starts: The Diablos are not originally equipped with any sort of fuel primer and if the checks leak within the carburetor, fuel can drain down the fuel line back into the tank leaving an engine hard to start cold. A couple of shots of Carburetor Cleaner down the throat and then full choke will help get the engine fired up. Carburetor Cleaner is better than starting fluid because it does not dry out the cylinder walls and score the surfaces.

Short pulls of the recoil: Hirth cable recoils do not have a dead end clip on the end of the cable within the rewind. Continuous hard pulls to the end of the cable length could pull the cable out of the rewind. Short pulls are best.


Tillotson Carburetors are finicky. The fuel mix to your engine will change dependant on temperature and usually affects the top end performance. Typical adjustment of the Low Speed Jet is out 1 turn. Typical adjustment of the High Speed Jet is out 1 ¼ turns. Adjust the Low Speed Jet and Idle Screw to get the engine to run smooth at a low idle to where the Primary Clutch is not trying to engage. Operate at top speed to know if the High Speed Jet needs adjustment. Tweak the High Speed Jet in or out 1/8 turns or less and get engine to run at the best top speed.


Fog the motor. Fogging spray is available at places like Fleet Farm or Snowmobile Supply Companies. Spray into the carburetor as directed. Pull the plug and spray down into the cylinder too. Pull the recoil a few times and reinstall the plug.

Drain gas from tank through fuel line. If your tank is not lined, you may want to drain as much fuel as possible, and then drop a rag in the tank and remove to soak up the remainder of the fuel. Then store with the gas cap off so the tank dries out.

Remove the Drive Belt and spray down the clutches with silicone spray or similar. WD40 will evaporate, so that is not a good choice.

Lubricate the bogie wheels. If you do not have lubrication zerks, spray lubricant behind each wheel rim as this is where the bushings are. If you have zerks, pumping oil into the bogie tube is best. 30W motor oil works well.

Check oil in gearbox. If dry, put in about a cup of oil and rotate to lubricate the chain. Put a dab of oil on the ski seater ball joint in front of the fuel tank too.

If you have mice, cover and protect the muffler outlet. For some reason, mice like to get into the mufflers and build nests. Also cover and tape up the carburetor to keep mice and their food out.

If your ski seater skis do not have the UHMW Wear Strips on the bottom, block them up off the floor or the wood will soak up the moisture from the ground or concrete and rot.


Use ratchet straps outward from the front and rear axel of the Diablo Tractor to the trailer. To insure stability in case one strap breaks, double up the straps. Tighten the straps snug, but do not crank them too tight as an axel could bend. Do not attach to the front bumper or handlebars as they both could get bent easily if driven over a large bump or pothole.

On 500’s and 502’, turn the key to the on position so it does not rattle out of the key switch while on the road. For the 503 model, remove the key.
Too many Diablos and parts to count.
Yamaha Apex (it outruns the Diablo for sure)
Yamaha 600 SX
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Schoobytwo (Bruce)
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Re: Basic Diablo Care

Postby Barrie2777 » Sat Jun 26, 2010 7:52 pm

As I have been laboring through the carb issues on my DIABLOs, I think I am understanding the carbs a little better than ever. DUring the initial start up, we pull on the choke to enrich the gas /air mixture. In effect we are creating enough vacuum for the engine to draw gas not only from the low speed jet but also from the high speed jet during this choking procedure. This coming winter I am going to experiment with unscrewing the high speed jet one extra turn just for the initial start up. This should give an extra "blast" of gas and make the first start much easier. We don't always have the can of carb cleaner nearby. The problem with this technique is remembering to screw in the high speed after it has started. Any comments on whether this will or won't work?
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