88 gl 1500 starting problem

Information and questions on GL1500 Goldwings (1988-2000)
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Joined: Sat Mar 24, 2012 2:13 am
Location: milford pa
Motorcycle: 1988 gl1500

88 gl 1500 starting problem

Postby tyrevere » Tue Jan 01, 2013 6:53 am

i have a 1988 gl 1500 and the problem i am having is that at time it wont start..i hit the start switch and all i hear is a clicking noise everytime i hit the start switch, like the solenoid engaging but the bike wont attempt to start. it doesnt try to turn over. so ill leave it for a day and come back and poof it starts right up no problems. i have checked fusses, the reverse switch, etc and all seem fine.. could it be the start switch itself? battery is new and charged and is on a charger nightly.... any help would be great!

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Location: London, England, United Kingdom
Motorcycle: 1988 GL1500 Panther Trike

Re: 88 gl 1500 starting problem

Postby liquineer » Tue Jan 01, 2013 10:11 am

I have the same question, my 88 has been standing, with an optimiser to keep the battery charged, for a few months as I damaged the achilles and hamstring on the same leg, so not able to ride.
I have had the problem intermittently, and also assumed it was the switch, and on Boxing day I could not get it to fire, just got dimmed lights, so just got some switch cleaner and will look at it tomorrow.

I have another question- if it won't start on the start switch, but as far as you know there is nothing else wrong, is there an alternative way to start the engine, as there is no kick start?
Are we having fun yet?

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Motorcycle: 98 SE GL 1500
had every year from 75 to 83

Re: 88 gl 1500 starting problem

Postby RBGERSON » Tue Jan 01, 2013 10:59 am

Check all contacts..ground wires, solenoid studs etc., starter switch..open and clean out...ignition switch contact points worn??? Jiggle the key may ID if that's the problem. Intermittent problems like that are usually dirt contacts/connections in the circuit someplace..assuming the battery is fully charged and does not have a bad cell. Check the battery output under load to be sure..at a battery place will do it for free..usually


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Motorcycle: 1999 1500A Aspencade

Re: 88 gl 1500 starting problem

Postby jbarr74 » Tue Jan 01, 2013 7:18 pm

I had a similiar problem this summer while traveling thru Arizona.
The problem started in New Mexico and got worse as I went west.
I had the bike checked at two dealers and they could find nothing!
To start the wing I removed the side panel and took the screw loose that holds the seloined and pulled it toward myself and located the two screws behind the selinoid and jumped across the two screws and the bike started!
Be careful not to pull so hard that you stress the wires. It will be very close in there but it will work.
I did discover that the emergency stop switch is very touchy and does not take much to move it just a hair, catching your sleeve on it is sometime enough to disable the start function.
Oh, when jumping the selinoid remember to turn the key on.
Hope this helps.

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Location: Johannesburg, Gauteng, South Africa
Motorcycle: 1993 Hond Goldwing 1500 SE

Re: 88 gl 1500 starting problem

Postby deonross » Fri Jan 04, 2013 1:25 am

I own a 1993 1500 SE and am experiancing a different problem. When i press the starter i hear a clicking noise simular to a flat battery with solinoid clicking continiously. I have recharged the battery assuming this is the problem and also jump started from a second battery still the same problem. All lights and flashers light up normal but will not start.
Holding my hand on the solinoid located next to the battery i can feel the vibration of this solinoid shuddering causing the noise but will not kick in to start.

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Motorcycle: 1988 gl1500

Re: 88 gl 1500 starting problem

Postby tyrevere » Fri Jan 04, 2013 1:29 am

That's exactly what's going on now. I'm baffled

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Location: Fort Scott, Kansas
Motorcycle: 1988 gl1500

Re: 88 gl 1500 starting problem

Postby philvern3 » Sun Jan 06, 2013 8:09 pm

I had the same problem, so a new starter new alt., new battery, new this new that.Honda shop??????? so I talked to an ole honda mecanic I had to install this little switch behind the reverse handel, and adjust the cables to it, I still have "wiggle" my reverse handel to get it started but now I know whats the problem I still don't have the cables adjusted right maybe this summer... try it

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