How To Tickle An Amal Carburetor

How To Tickle An Amal Carburetor

Tickling An Amal Carb


Amal Concentric Tickler Button

 Amal Concentric tickler plunger. This is the later style that has the longer plunger which prevents fuel from getting onto your fingers.


Have you ever heard of the term you have to tickle your Amal carburetor before you start your motorcycle? If you own a British motorcycle you should know exactly what I'm referring to. Almost all Amal carburetors have the tickler feature which includes models from the Pre-Monobloc, Monobloc, and the Concentric carburetor. Some look different but all have the same functions.

Amal Monobloc Tickler
Amal Monoblocs also use the tickler set-up. A different style from the Amal Concentric carbs but works the same way.

The tickler is also known to some as a "primer". In reality, the tickler is a primer. When you tickle an Amal carburetor you must press down on the plunger. When the tickler has been pushed and held down, the plunger internally pushes down on the float causing the float needle to leave the seat. When the needle leaves the seat it causes the float bowl to "overfill" or "flood".

"Its almost impossible to start..."

A motorcycle that has a "rich" condition at idle or on the pilot jet will be easier to start. When you tickle the carbs it acts in a similar manner making start ups easier. Have you ever tried starting you Triumph or BSA without using the tickler? Its almost impossible to start....


Procedure: Turn your petcocks on, press down on the tickler, once fuel leaves the tickler you can release the plunger and your ready to start your bike up! Theirs no need to "pump" the plunger, simply hold it down until fuel gets released.

Watch this quick video clip on how to tickle your Amal Carbs.


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  • David

    If your tickler is leaking gas it means your fuel level is too high. Adjust your float. The bowl should be almost full, not 100% full.

    Remember that the tickler is a mechanical override to the natural buoyancy of your float. It literally pushes down on the float, forcing open the fuel needle, allowing more fuel to fill/over-fill the bowl.

    If it leaks, it means your float is already too high and the needle is not sealing against its seat, thus allowing fuel to continue to flow in to the bowl (or stopping it at too high a level).

  • Raymond Blacklock

    tickler is leaking gas when bike is running. Is there an internal o ring?
    ’67 TR6, Amal 930

  • kenny Hetrick

    Tickle button is leaking gas, is there a repair kit for this ?

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