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2008 HyperMotard 1100S
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Start the bike. Pick a cylinder, pull the spark plug lead off from the spark plug itself. The bike should start running really rough -- if it does, the bike was running on two cylinders before you unplugged the lead. If the bike stalls immediately, the one that you didn't remove wasn't firing. It doesn't matter which plug lead you initially pick to disconnect, the theory is the same. If you pull a lead and the bike doesn't stall, reconnect the lead and then pull the lead of the other cylinder's spark plug.

Once you've done this a couple times, you'll be able to identify whether the engine is running on 1 or 2 cylinders by the exhaust note. You may be surprised that the bike actually idles quite happily on one cylinder! It will sound terrible, though, and will be even worse to ride.
 

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If one cylinder head gets warm and the other remains at ambient temperature...you might be running on one cylinder.

If the pipe coming from the exhaust port on one cylinder gets hot and the other stays cool...you might be running on one cylinder.

If you remove the sparkplugs and one is wet...you might be running on one cylinder.

If you get passed by a Toyota Prius...you might be running on one cylinder.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks guys.

I was asking because after my accident, I ride the bike home. It was running fine, no rough idle, except for lack of power. The mechanic said a wire got disconnected, and he simply connected the wire back.

I expected the bike to be a lot rougher on one cylinder, but apparently I am wrong.
 

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If one cylinder head gets warm and the other remains at ambient temperature...you might be running on one cylinder.

If the pipe coming from the exhaust port on one cylinder gets hot and the other stays cool...you might be running on one cylinder.

If you remove the sparkplugs and one is wet...you might be running on one cylinder.

If you get passed by a Toyota Prius...you might be running on one cylinder.
If your dealer tells you it will only cost $200 for a valve job...you might be running on one cylinder

if your bike can pull a wheelie every other two feet...you might be running on one cylinder.
 

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I could easily tell my bike was running on one cylinder when it happened. ZERO power. even for a 2 valve!
 
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