Intermittant Reverse

Information and questions on GL1500 Goldwings (1988-2000)
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Motorcycle: 1994 Goldwing SE

Intermittant Reverse

Post by NetTech94 » Thu Oct 15, 2015 8:22 pm

Having an issue where the Reverse works but cuts out. It will re-engage if I lower the reverse bar then bring it back up. This had been checked out at Local Honda shop. It works on level ground but on a slight incline it cuts out. Not wanting to just change parts anyone know of a method to isolate the source of the failure?

I assume it one of three things
Corrosion on shaky connection on the fusible link under the seat
Failing solenoid the lower one next to the battery
The switch associated with the reverse lever.


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Re: Intermittant Reverse

Post by bstig60 » Thu Oct 15, 2015 9:34 pm

Sounds like a faulty micro switch. You might want to check the cable adjustment and make sure it is to spec.

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Re: Intermittant Reverse

Post by WingAdmin » Fri Oct 16, 2015 1:00 pm

The reverse system has three high-power resistors and two speed-control relays. The reverse control module detects what kind of current is being drawn by the reverse system (if you're reversing down an incline, it uses very little current, if you're reversing up an incline it uses much more current) and the reverse control module instructs one or both power control relays to close, which routes power through another resistor (or two), adding to the amount of power supplied to the reverse/starter motor. The whole idea behind the system is to keep the bike reversing at a constant speed, regardless of the incline.

If the reverse control module sees any one of several conditions occur, it immediately trips the speed limiter relay and shuts the reverse off. You've discovered that you can reset this by recycling the reverse lever.

One condition is an overspeed (or underspeed) that cannot be controlled by switching resistors in or out. If the bike is on such an incline that it is going too fast (i.e. the motor is braking the bike rather than pushing the bike) for more than 3 seconds, or the reverse cannot physically push the bike fast enough, it will shut down.

It also monitors battery voltage. If your battery voltage drops too low, it will shut down.

Your reverse does operate - for a short time. When it is under load (on an incline - you didn't say if you were going up or down an incline, I'll assume you meant up), I suspect your battery voltage is dropping too much, and the reverse is shutting down. If this is the case, a new battery might be in the cards for you. It will also shut down if it sees excessive voltage.

The engine control computer is also notified by the reverse control unit when your bike is in reverse. If it sees the bike moving faster than 1.5 mph, it trips the speed limiter relay, shutting the reverse off.

So the first thing I'd do, before getting into the (rather complex) diagnostics is to monitor your battery voltage with a meter connected to your battery while the reverse is operating.

Reverse circuit
Reverse circuit

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