My starter isn't getting enough power on my GL1100


Information and questions on GL1100 Goldwings (1980-1983)
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llang
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Location: Mpls., MN
Motorcycle: 1982 GL 1100

My starter isn't getting enough power on my GL1100

Postby llang » Wed May 14, 2014 3:15 pm



My starter isn't getting enough power Put in a new solenoid because the old one was just clicking, the new one does the same. I checked the voltage coming from the solenoid and it's 2v at best. Do you think the problem is starter switch button? I rebuilt the starter last winter(brushes/brush plate) cleaned it completely. This spring it was a cold day(45F) when I tried to start it, the starter ran fine for a 4 tries and then nothing. The battery is fully charged and new last fall. ???



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WingAdmin
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Re: My starter isn't getting enough power on my GL1100

Postby WingAdmin » Wed May 14, 2014 3:21 pm

If the solenoid is clicking, there's nothing wrong with your start button. Did you measure the voltage at the solenoid, or at the starter motor?

Measure the voltage at the input AND output of the solenoid. If you see 12 volts at the input, and only 2 volts at the output when the start button is pressed, chances are it's a bad solenoid.

The other possibility is that the solenoid is fine, and the engine is hydrolocked. In this case, the starter is trying to turn an engine that simply will not turn. It draws a tremendous amount of power from the battery when doing this, and if the battery is weak, the voltage will drop very low.

Put the bike in fifth gear, then try to rotate the rear wheel. If you can rotate it (which means you're rotating the engine) then it's not hydrolocked.

You can also try disconnecting the starter motor from the solenoid, then pressing the start button. If you're still seeing only 2 volts at the output of the solenoid, then you can say pretty much for sure that the solenoid has failed.

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virgilmobile
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Re: My starter isn't getting enough power on my GL1100

Postby virgilmobile » Wed May 14, 2014 3:30 pm

You measure the 2 volts at the starter cable.?
What was the voltage from the frame to the battery side of the starter solenoid when you try to crank it..?
Then measure the battery volts directly across the battery posts while you crank it...Does it stay at 12 volts.??

If the battery volts are holding OK between the frame and the solenoid post,the solenoid may be bad,If not...suspect a corroded ground lug at the engine mount.

If you jump the solenoid with a screwdriver,will it crank..?? If it does,replace the solenoid after you verify there is 12 volts between the 2 small wires as you crank...it's the volts that operate the solenoid...Don't measure to ground...right to both terminals....

llang
Posts: 8
Joined: Wed Aug 21, 2013 1:05 am
Location: Mpls., MN
Motorcycle: 1982 GL 1100

Re: My starter isn't getting enough power on my GL1100

Postby llang » Wed May 14, 2014 11:44 pm

Ok guys, thanks for the suggestions I will check them out tomorrow and let you know what I find out.

llang
Posts: 8
Joined: Wed Aug 21, 2013 1:05 am
Location: Mpls., MN
Motorcycle: 1982 GL 1100

Re: My starter isn't getting enough power on my GL1100

Postby llang » Thu May 15, 2014 3:16 pm

I put it in gear and, yes the wheel does turn tight as if the engine is turning.

I disconneced the starter cable and, yes there is the almost the the same voltage as at the battery 12.5>11.5v when the starter button is pressed.

So do you think that the starter is grounding out? Thinking that maybe something is grounding out in the starter to the casing?
Thought I would ask before fooling around and pulling the starter again.

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WingAdmin
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Re: My starter isn't getting enough power on my GL1100

Postby WingAdmin » Thu May 15, 2014 3:37 pm

llang wrote:I put it in gear and, yes the wheel does turn tight as if the engine is turning.

I disconneced the starter cable and, yes there is the almost the the same voltage as at the battery 12.5>11.5v when the starter button is pressed.

So do you think that the starter is grounding out? Thinking that maybe something is grounding out in the starter to the casing?
Thought I would ask before fooling around and pulling the starter again.


Sure sounds to me like the starter is presenting a dead short when supplied with power. Time to pull it, I think.

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plumbermullins
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Re: My starter isn't getting enough power on my GL1100

Postby plumbermullins » Sun May 18, 2014 6:29 pm

I had this same problem on my 82 shortly after a professional rebuild Took the starter apart my self and found that there was poor contact between the brush plate and the body of the starter put a small piece of stranded wire between the plat and the body making sure not to cause any ground out with stray strands haven't had any problems as of yet 3 years as of now. the symptom is voltage to the starter stud but no crank tap the starter and see if it starts. the plate is notched to help complete the circuit but with age the body gets a little corroded and prevents the starter from completing the circuit Good luck

llang
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Re: My starter isn't getting enough power on my GL1100

Postby llang » Tue May 20, 2014 8:54 pm

I pulled the starter motor and yes there is continuity between the cable termimal and the starter body but I don't understand why.
Didn't have any problem prior to replacing the brush plate & brushes. Other than that I cleaned up the armature, regreased gearbox, did not take out the field coils but sprayed them with brake cleaner and wiped them down.




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