Early vs Late 1985 Aspencade, Starter Issue


Information and questions on GL1200 Goldwings (1984-1987)
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MechDad
Posts: 10
Joined: Sat Oct 10, 2015 7:28 pm
Location: Scarborough, Maine, USA
Motorcycle: 1985 GL1200A Aspencade
1980ish Yamaha XS650
Various rolling chassis

Early vs Late 1985 Aspencade, Starter Issue

Postby MechDad » Fri Oct 16, 2015 10:13 pm



Hello Everyone,
Really enjoying all the awesome information in this forum, thanks for being here!
The first day that I tried to take my new-to-me 1985 Aspencade out for a ride, I hit the starter button, and got nothing but a click. I had noticed it started a little sluggish the night before doing some maintenance, but now, nothing. I checked the solenoid voltage, and everything looked ok there, and I was getting full voltage at the starter. Reading around the forums, I deduced a bad starter, and ordered up the repair kit from Ebay. After finally getting it removed from the engine, I put power directly to it. It rotated, but not terribly fast. I also noticed that the starter rattled when I shook it back and forth. After cleaning it and trying to put it all back together, it seems clear that there is something off with this starter. I am guessing it is a cheap-o Ebay re-man with the wrong internals. Here it is together, and what I found inside:
Starter Whole
Starter Whole

Starter Apart
Starter Apart


Here you can see that the +brush terminal was damaged, and someone just soldered it directly:
Starter Broken Attachment
Starter Broken Attachment


I did my best to get everything lined up during reassembly, but it seems clear that the armature is not the right length, or that it is missing a serious amount of washers. It still rattles back and forth, and here you can see that when the front of the starter (positioned when sitting on the bike) is properly assembled, the brushes do not line up properly. I have also tried countless times to get the last cover on perfectly straight, but when I am done the starter won't turn by hand at all, it seems bound up.
Starter misaligned
Starter misaligned


Here is where my early/late 1985 question comes in. I have read that you can tell by the starter if you have an early or late 1985 GW, but with my theory that this starter is an Ebay replacement, I don't trust that it is the right one. Is there a VIN cutoff number, or some other sign that will tell me if this is Early or Late, so that I can order the proper starter and get to enjoy this thing before the snow flies??

Thanks in advance for any suggestions!

Mechanical Dad
(aka Steve in Maine)



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virgilmobile
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Re: Early vs Late 1985 Aspencade, Starter Issue

Postby virgilmobile » Fri Oct 16, 2015 10:28 pm

Sorry I can't help with the info you need...however I did service my starter on my 84 interstate and took a bunch of pictures...
Here's the post.... viewtopic.php?t=13017
Keep in mind that there's a plantar gearbox on the end of the starter...It's near impossible to turn the output sprocket by hand and have it spin the starter motor..

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virgilmobile
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Re: Early vs Late 1985 Aspencade, Starter Issue

Postby virgilmobile » Fri Oct 16, 2015 10:35 pm

I just looked close at your pictures.....That thing isn't much like my 84 starter at all....I see no roller bearing in the back cover,just a bushing like they had in the 83 gl1100.
My 84 had only one bushing....I also noticed the casing is smaller....
Does anybody know if this starter he has is the right one for his bike???????
It looks kinda "wrong"....

MechDad
Posts: 10
Joined: Sat Oct 10, 2015 7:28 pm
Location: Scarborough, Maine, USA
Motorcycle: 1985 GL1200A Aspencade
1980ish Yamaha XS650
Various rolling chassis

Re: Early vs Late 1985 Aspencade, Starter Issue

Postby MechDad » Fri Oct 16, 2015 10:44 pm

Thanks for your response. I checked out your pictures. I had hoped to do it similar to the way you had, but instead of two screws to separate the starter, mine had three, and I couldn't get to the third one.

I don't think I made it clear in the picture, but I only found one washer inside, and it was on the other end from the gear housing, so no "thrust washers". Seems to add to the wrongness, lol :?

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virgilmobile
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83 GL1100 I
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84 GL 1200 I

Re: Early vs Late 1985 Aspencade, Starter Issue

Postby virgilmobile » Fri Oct 16, 2015 11:03 pm

Yea...it just don't look right...altho,I don't have a OEM bike just like yours to compare it to...
By the way...the brushes should rest fully on the copper contacts...I suspect a few spacers are needed.
I've also heard that a Korean knockoff was avaiable....They were poorly made too...Check the plantar gearbox...The real Honda one uses a metal outside gear ring...the cheap one used plastic of all things...If it has a plastic outer ring,don't expect much....If would be better to get a OEM one....Just be sure you get the sprocket with it too.

MechDad
Posts: 10
Joined: Sat Oct 10, 2015 7:28 pm
Location: Scarborough, Maine, USA
Motorcycle: 1985 GL1200A Aspencade
1980ish Yamaha XS650
Various rolling chassis

Re: Early vs Late 1985 Aspencade, Starter Issue

Postby MechDad » Sat Oct 17, 2015 1:47 pm

U
virgilmobile wrote:...I suspect a few spacers are needed. I've also heard that a Korean knockoff was avaiable....They were poorly made too...Check the plantar gearbox...The real Honda one uses a metal outside gear ring...the cheap one used plastic of all things...If would be better to get a OEM one....Just be sure you get the sprocket with it too.


Unfortunately there were no other spacers inside. Maybe I could surface grind some washers flat? I checked the ring, it is metal at least. Getting an OEM one goes back to the heart of my question about early vs. late 1985, but now I am thinking I can just get a used one that matches the external appearance of mine. I already have the rebuild kit, so used would be fine with me.

The other thing I can't wrap my mind around is that this thing actually worked when I bought the bike...crazy...

Thanks virgilmobile for your input!

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virgilmobile
Posts: 7653
Joined: Sun Sep 19, 2010 5:39 pm
Location: Denham Springs,La.
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Previously owned
78 GL1000
81 GL1100
82 GL1100 I
83 GL1100 I
83 GL1100 standard
84 GL 1200 I

Re: Early vs Late 1985 Aspencade, Starter Issue

Postby virgilmobile » Sat Oct 17, 2015 3:45 pm

I wouldn't be opposed to adding whatever you need to fit it correctly.I would however just work on the motor side first...without the planitairy gears in place.Youll be able to judge how many and which end the spacers need to go.
You want to end up with full brush contact with the copper.Space the rear end first.Theres usually just one fiber spacer there.Then add spacers to the other end till the inside has just a touch of free end play.Maybe 0.010".It should not bind or rattle.make sure there is sufficient contact with the planitairy gears then put the end on.Test it before you put it back




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