ANOTHER CASE OF THE STARTER JUST SPINNING


Information and questions on GL1100 Goldwings (1980-1983)
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PRACTIKALGUY
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ANOTHER CASE OF THE STARTER JUST SPINNING

Postby PRACTIKALGUY » Fri Mar 07, 2014 8:07 pm



I find it ironic that I bought my '83 Aspencade a year ago, and I'm back to the original problem. A couple weeks ago I got the new water pump in and both heads back on...ran fine with no leaks. Today I went out to fix and permanently hang the exhaust. The engine quickly popped and that was it....the starter and chain just spin and spin. As I said, this was an issue a year ago but, when I had the engine out last summer, I replaced the springs, caps, rollers and cleaned up the sprague clutch.
The temp outside is about the same...high 30s. I use Valvoline Motorcycle 10/40. My thought is that maybe it caught the first time, but that lubed it a bit, then the thickness of the oil at about 40F was enough to cause it to not catch.
Has anyone else had this consistent issue with an '83? Does this seem to be an issue at certain temps. I can't imagine it was designed that way.



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themainviking
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Re: ANOTHER CASE OF THE STARTER JUST SPINNING

Postby themainviking » Fri Mar 07, 2014 10:13 pm

I don't have an 83, and in fact I have a GL1800, a 2009. Myself and some others have had difficulty with 10W40 oil and the sprague clutches in some of these bikes for cold weather starting. For myself, it only does not clutch in the starter and turn the engine on the first try, and then it works correctly. This may have absolutely nothing to do with what is going on for you, but I thought it worth mentioning.
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Re: ANOTHER CASE OF THE STARTER JUST SPINNING

Postby RoadRogue » Fri Mar 07, 2014 10:37 pm

All the 1100's do this when you run thicker oil and its cold, when it warms up everything will be just fine. In the mean time you can run 10W30 or 5W30 while the weather is cold 8-)
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Re: ANOTHER CASE OF THE STARTER JUST SPINNING

Postby PRACTIKALGUY » Sat Mar 08, 2014 9:04 am

Any pros or cons between 5W30 and 10W30? The PO used full-synthetic in this bike before I got it; he didn't seem to have the cold weather issue. However, the shops told me to keep the synthetic out of the bike, so it's been straight Valvoline conv. Any feelings on this? Has anyone had this spinning issue reduce when using a synthetic or a blend?

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triketrash
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Re: ANOTHER CASE OF THE STARTER JUST SPINNING

Postby triketrash » Sat Mar 08, 2014 11:01 am

I'm running synthetic and have some seafoam in there and still have the same issue as you. Once I get it running, it starts fine for the rest of the day, but if it sits overnight, even with temps in the 40s it's spin city next time I go to start it. I have found if I put a small space heater under the bike and a tarp over top to contain the heat, it will start pretty easily. It is definitely a temperature issue. It surprises me that you worked on the clutch and still have issues. I was thinking of doing that with mine too, but if it doesn't make any difference I'll just stick with the heater :) I would like to find a small portable block heater that I could take with me on an overnighter though.

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Re: ANOTHER CASE OF THE STARTER JUST SPINNING

Postby PRACTIKALGUY » Mon Mar 10, 2014 10:15 am

This situation seems like a design flaw....almost recall worthy. I'm sure Honda simply thought it easier in '84 to release the redesigned 1200. Does the 1500 and 1800 use the sprague clutch or is the starter geared to the engine? Seems like a much better way to go. I just got rid of a Kawasaki KZ650 which had issues with the sprague clutch also when the engine was WARM!

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Re: ANOTHER CASE OF THE STARTER JUST SPINNING

Postby WingAdmin » Mon Mar 10, 2014 10:25 am

PRACTIKALGUY wrote:This situation seems like a design flaw....almost recall worthy. I'm sure Honda simply thought it easier in '84 to release the redesigned 1200. Does the 1500 and 1800 use the sprague clutch or is the starter geared to the engine? Seems like a much better way to go. I just got rid of a Kawasaki KZ650 which had issues with the sprague clutch also when the engine was WARM!


The GL1500 and GL1800 tie the starter to the engine/transmission in a completely different way, because the starter is also used to drive the bike in reverse.

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Re: ANOTHER CASE OF THE STARTER JUST SPINNING

Postby themainviking » Mon Mar 10, 2014 3:06 pm

PRACTIKALGUY wrote: the shops told me to keep the synthetic out of the bike, so it's been straight Valvoline conv. Any feelings on this? Has anyone had this spinning issue reduce when using a synthetic or a blend?


Any shops that are telling you to keep synthetic out of the bike are doing so because they know nothing about lubrication and lubricants. I am not advising you to use synthetic oil, but in a mechanically sound engine that does not leak oil, there is really no reason not to. However - there is always a however, isn't there? However, if you intend to change your oil every 3,000 miles or so, like most guys with motorcycles do, there is really no reason to buy expensive synthetic. I was using 10W40 synthetic in my GL1800 and in temps from 30 to 40 degrees, I had this intermittent spinning issue. It resolved when I went to 10W30 oil from the same synthetic manufacturer. This is not to say that anything I have written will work for you, as we have different bikes. Only thing I can suggest is to try it.
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Re: ANOTHER CASE OF THE STARTER JUST SPINNING

Postby RBGERSON » Tue Mar 11, 2014 7:20 am

You could try heating up that area of the bike light bulb, hair drier, electric heater..There a "fix" for the starter clutch..drill a hole in the case, add a port and spray solvent directly into the starter clutch's holes..see pics last pic is to show what happens inside tube into the holes..
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triketrash
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Re: ANOTHER CASE OF THE STARTER JUST SPINNING

Postby triketrash » Tue Mar 11, 2014 10:25 am

You know I've been thinking of doing this to mine, and still may, but my thought is that this would address the problem of the clutch squealing, but not spinning. Somebody please correct me if I'm wrong on this, but it seems like the squealing is caused by the little rollers being gummed up and hanging on even after the engine starts so lubing them up would help. The spinning problem is the clutch not engaging at all. My clutch never squeals, it just spins.

The second thing I'm trying to figure out is, when I guy actually replaces the sprag clutch, what does he change- just the springs and rollers, or is there a clutch surface that wears out?

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Re: ANOTHER CASE OF THE STARTER JUST SPINNING

Postby PRACTIKALGUY » Tue Mar 11, 2014 11:47 am

I got it started after some effort yesterday...it was 55F. Today, now that it's 42F, just spinning. The PO used synthetic and didn't seem to have as bad of a problem.
After some research, I found this oil:


Features
AMSOIL Power Sports 4-Stroke Synthetic Motor Oil SAE 0W-40

AMSOIL Formula 4-Stroke "Power Sports" is formulated for top engine and transmission performance and is ideal for recreational or work use. It is anti-wear fortified and wet-clutch compatible. This all-climate/all-season oil is excellent for both cold and hot temperatures. It replaces 0W-30, 0W-40, 5W-30, 10W-30, and 10W-40 oils for ATVs, snowmobiles, and other power sports applications. Manufacturers include Polaris, Honda, Yamaha, Bombardier, Suzuki, Kawasaki, and Arctic Cat.


If this oil wouldn't be thin enough when cold to let the little roller springs in the clutch open up, then nothing would. Since it's rated to replace 10W-40, I don't see how it could hurt...except that it's $12 a quart. But I'd pay $30 a quart to "fix" this issue.
Any experience and/or opinions?

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Re: ANOTHER CASE OF THE STARTER JUST SPINNING

Postby WingAdmin » Tue Mar 11, 2014 12:16 pm

PRACTIKALGUY wrote:I got it started after some effort yesterday...it was 55F. Today, now that it's 42F, just spinning. The PO used synthetic and didn't seem to have as bad of a problem.
After some research, I found this oil:


Features
AMSOIL Power Sports 4-Stroke Synthetic Motor Oil SAE 0W-40

AMSOIL Formula 4-Stroke "Power Sports" is formulated for top engine and transmission performance and is ideal for recreational or work use. It is anti-wear fortified and wet-clutch compatible. This all-climate/all-season oil is excellent for both cold and hot temperatures. It replaces 0W-30, 0W-40, 5W-30, 10W-30, and 10W-40 oils for ATVs, snowmobiles, and other power sports applications. Manufacturers include Polaris, Honda, Yamaha, Bombardier, Suzuki, Kawasaki, and Arctic Cat.


If this oil wouldn't be thin enough when cold to let the little roller springs in the clutch open up, then nothing would. Since it's rated to replace 10W-40, I don't see how it could hurt...except that it's $12 a quart. But I'd pay $30 a quart to "fix" this issue.
Any experience and/or opinions?


Honestly, replacing the oil to get it thinner when cold is treating the symptom, not the cause - and it's only prolonging the inevitable. The best way to fix this is to get rid of the sludge that is gumming up the sprags. There's three ways to do this:

- Spray solvent in through a hole as described above
- Disassemble engine and clean the sprags directly
- Add Seafoam to engine oil and ride gently for 50-100 miles, then change oil

All three of these will clean the sprags of the sludge that is preventing them from properly engaging. If it's really bad, you may have to do the Seafoam treatment twice, but once it's done, it shouldn't matter what oil you use, it will always engage correctly.

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Re: ANOTHER CASE OF THE STARTER JUST SPINNING

Postby PRACTIKALGUY » Tue Mar 11, 2014 12:39 pm

All true, WingAdmin, but the engine was out last summer at which time the rollers, caps and springs were all replaced with Honda OEM parts. I sprayed out the spring channels and roller "ports" with brake cleaner until it was sparkling. I had no issue with it from then (early August) until early October when I blew the water pump and head gasket on I-90.
Once I fixed the water pump and head gaskets (I did both gaskets), it cranked beautifully until the bowls filled and it started. I assume because the rollers were dry due to it sitting for over 4 months. However, since then, it's been a really pain.
So, it's really frustrating, because something's not working which isn't broke! I want/need to be able to take it to work and/or camping when it's still cool (not cold) out, and not have to worry about being stranded.
Since it's all basically new (maybe a few thousand miles on it), I assumed a different oil may help. The only thing which could have caused any issue is when it over-heated last October; the oil did look and smell a bit burnt, but it's been replaced a couple of times since then.

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Re: ANOTHER CASE OF THE STARTER JUST SPINNING

Postby triketrash » Tue Mar 11, 2014 6:51 pm

Exactly- hence my question about the possibility of something else wearing out in there apart from the parts that you changed.

As far as that Amsoil goes- it couldn't hurt. And I hear you- it's expensive but if it worked, great- I'm in exactly the same boat as you- I just never know if I'm going to get it started again, and I don't want to burn out another starter trying. Let me know how the Amsoil works- if it does, I'll do the same.

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Re: ANOTHER CASE OF THE STARTER JUST SPINNING

Postby themainviking » Tue Mar 11, 2014 7:02 pm

PRACTIKALGUY wrote:I got it started after some effort yesterday...it was 55F. Today, now that it's 42F, just spinning. The PO used synthetic and didn't seem to have as bad of a problem.
After some research, I found this oil:


Features
AMSOIL Power Sports 4-Stroke Synthetic Motor Oil SAE 0W-40

AMSOIL Formula 4-Stroke "Power Sports" is formulated for top engine and transmission performance and is ideal for recreational or work use. It is anti-wear fortified and wet-clutch compatible. This all-climate/all-season oil is excellent for both cold and hot temperatures. It replaces 0W-30, 0W-40, 5W-30, 10W-30, and 10W-40 oils for ATVs, snowmobiles, and other power sports applications. Manufacturers include Polaris, Honda, Yamaha, Bombardier, Suzuki, Kawasaki, and Arctic Cat.


If this oil wouldn't be thin enough when cold to let the little roller springs in the clutch open up, then nothing would. Since it's rated to replace 10W-40, I don't see how it could hurt...except that it's $12 a quart. But I'd pay $30 a quart to "fix" this issue.
Any experience and/or opinions?


Keep in mind that the viscosity of the oil you have described is not necessarily the viscosity at the temperatures where you are having problems. What I mean is, the viscosity will not be 0 at 30 degrees F. The measurement of 0 is when the oil would be really thick if not a multi grade oil. This temperature is measured at more like -30 F. The 40 would be at about 180 F. What the oil is at 30 degrees is not going to be that much different than a 5W40 or 10W40 would be. The only thing I can suggest for you is to use a lighter weight oil when you expect to use the bike in colder weather, such as a 5W30 or even a 5W20. Then change to a heavier multi viscosity when you are using the bike in warmer temps. The only other thing that I can think of is what WingAdmin suggested. The foregoing description on how viscosities are measured was told to me by one of Amsoil's lubrication engineers, so it would apply to the products you are looking at.
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Re: ANOTHER CASE OF THE STARTER JUST SPINNING

Postby triketrash » Tue Mar 11, 2014 7:17 pm

so viking, you're saying you think a 5W30 would beat the 0W40 in this game?

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Re: ANOTHER CASE OF THE STARTER JUST SPINNING

Postby triketrash » Wed Mar 12, 2014 4:32 pm

Spring showed up in the Seattle area today in all its glory. What a day! My bike's almost all dialed in- the latest thing I did was put new rubber on front and back along with a different/ better final drive. I didn't balance the tires because I'm waiting for my beads, but just had to ride. So.... as to not drift too far from the theme here, I spent about an hour and a half with a space heater under the bike before the sprag clutch would grab- shoulda put it under there last night. It's really quite annoying. It was in the 30's last night I believe. I'm running 10/40 synthetic with a half can of Seafoam in there. I'll give it a couple of weeks and try a thinner oil if I'm still having trouble. Next move is the hole drilled in the case. So how much solvent can a guy spray in there without worrying about changing the oil?

No one has commented on the question about whether there could be anything other than rollers and springs worn out in practikalguy's sprag- any takers?

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Re: ANOTHER CASE OF THE STARTER JUST SPINNING

Postby themainviking » Wed Mar 12, 2014 9:41 pm

triketrash wrote:so viking, you're saying you think a 5W30 would beat the 0W40 in this game?


Yes, I do. I think a 5W30 would be just about the perfect oil for those temps. In fact, the owners manual actually says you can use a 10W30 oil from 20 to 90 degrees F, so a 5W30 should be good for at least the same at both ends. Now whether it stops the problems with the sprague clutch at those lower temps remains to be seen.
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Re: ANOTHER CASE OF THE STARTER JUST SPINNING

Postby triketrash » Wed Mar 12, 2014 10:27 pm

OK Viking- I'll try that at my next oil change, or sooner if things keep up the way they were today. I'm hoping that the more I ride it, the better it will get if this seafoam works as suggested.

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Re: ANOTHER CASE OF THE STARTER JUST SPINNING

Postby PRACTIKALGUY » Thu Mar 13, 2014 8:16 am

I, also, may try 5W30. I found a 5W30 conv. made by Honda at the dealership.
Trike, I can relate to the weather around Seattle. I'm originally from the Skagit Valley (Mt. Vernon). Lots of good riding up there when it's warm!!

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Re: ANOTHER CASE OF THE STARTER JUST SPINNING

Postby triketrash » Thu Mar 13, 2014 10:27 am

OK practikal- let us know how that works for you.

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Re: ANOTHER CASE OF THE STARTER JUST SPINNING

Postby PRACTIKALGUY » Tue Mar 18, 2014 6:29 pm

So, I was able to get out for a 50 mile ride today...the heater by the flywheel helped. I added a half can of Seafoam, so, I'm hoping that does the trick.
Right when I got home (thank goodness), I noticed it leaking coolant. I traced it to the o-ring at the right head elbow. Should be an easy enough fix. I assume it can be done without loosening the head?

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Re: ANOTHER CASE OF THE STARTER JUST SPINNING

Postby triketrash » Tue Mar 18, 2014 7:21 pm

OK- good to hear- ya the heater works great- I've been doing that too- works even better if you put a blanket or tarp over the bike to contain the heat. I've ridden a fair bit over the last few days, and my bike's been starting fine. I've had that 1/2 can of seafoam in there for a couple hundred miles. I'm thinking about changing oil again and doing the 5/30.

So are you running the 5W30 now?

I had a little coolant leak too after doing my waterpump a while back. Turned out it was just one of the hose clamps not tight enough- check that before you dive into anything more.

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Re: ANOTHER CASE OF THE STARTER JUST SPINNING

Postby Johnyy Smoke » Wed Mar 19, 2014 4:51 am

You can replace the o-ring at the elbow , and the one at the other end -plus the gasket were the crossover pipe goes into the head easy enough. ( Use gasket sealer for sure ) No need to remove the head. The carbs is what you have to work around. Smear some vasiline on the o-ring to help prevent cutting it. Tight area to work in, but it can be done. Regards, Johnyy

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Re: ANOTHER CASE OF THE STARTER JUST SPINNING

Postby PRACTIKALGUY » Thu Mar 20, 2014 12:13 pm

Triketrash, after my ride a couple days ago, it cranked right up the next day when it was 37F. I think riding it for about an hour got oil and Seafoam everywhere and helped it out. It still has the 10W40, and I'll stay with it as long as it keeps cranking.




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