Reverse gear stopping after 2-3 seconds - sorted


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North Western
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Reverse gear stopping after 2-3 seconds - sorted

Post by North Western »



Yesterday, while out for a run up the West Coast of Scotland I used my reverse gear to back out of a parking slot.
I didn't need to, but the guys I was with had never seen a Goldwing reversing, so I did it as a demonstration.
Started the engine, pressed the reverse button, Neutral light goes out and the Reverse light comes on...all good.
Press the starter button, the bike reverses for about 2 seconds and stops.....what????.....press the starter button again...nothing!
Release the reverse button, the light goes out and the neutral light comes on....press the reverse button, neutral light goes out, reverse light comes on, press the starter button, the bike moves...Yaaaaaaa....stops after about 2 seconds!......not yaaaaaa!
It kept doing that until I stop trying to reverse.
Apparently my mates thought it was normal.

Today I go out to the garage to try and fix it. Spend some time adjusting the cables ....makes no difference.
Start suspecting the reverse regulator, electronics etc. as the wheel stops turning after the same amount of time every time.

The internet recommends spraying the reverse switch with contact cleaner.
I am sceptical, the reverse switch only actuates the reverse gear mechanism, and is apparently a sealed unit, and you press the starter switch to make the wheel turn. Different switches doing different things and I know the starter switch works because....it does... :D

However....Faced with troubleshooting through electric relays and electronics, I think....spraying with contact cleaner will only take a few seconds of my time and won't cause any other problems.
So....place some cloths over the bodywork for protection and spray in the contact cleaner while pressing the reverse switch in and out quite a few times.

Switched on the ignition, started the bike, pressed the reverse switch, neutral light goes off, reverse light goes on, I press the starter switch, the wheel starts turning ......and turning......and turning...and turning :shock: I stopped at 30 seconds.

It worked....I was gobsmacked.....and humbled.

So.......try the contact cleaner trick on your switches folks....I am a converted sceptic.

Ride safe and stay safe.
Regards
Don


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GoldWingrGreg
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Re: Reverse gear stopping after 2-3 seconds - sorted

Post by GoldWingrGreg »

In Honda's Service Manual is a series of test that need done.
North Western
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Re: Reverse gear stopping after 2-3 seconds - sorted

Post by North Western »

Yep... there is, and that was my next step, however the contact cleaner step was quick and painless, and I lost nothing by trying.
I didn't expect it to work and was prepared to follow the procedures in the manual. I was pleasantly surprised.

Are you suggesting that it may be advisable that I do the checks in case there is an underlying problem?

Kind regards
Don
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Re: Reverse gear stopping after 2-3 seconds - sorted

Post by GoldWingrGreg »

I'd do nothing more till it acts up again. My guess is that your issue is not resolved.
North Western
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Re: Reverse gear stopping after 2-3 seconds - sorted

Post by North Western »

Okay....thank you for the advice.

Kind regards
Don
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Re: Reverse gear stopping after 2-3 seconds - sorted

Post by Techdude2000 »

If it still does it on the ground, check for a shorted B starter relay. It can short and the reverse control module will sense it and shut it down early. Because the A starter relay has to supply the B relay with power, you won’t see an issue with starting, only reversing if it’s shorted.
North Western
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Re: Reverse gear stopping after 2-3 seconds - sorted

Post by North Western »

Hi Techdude2000
Thanks for that information, I'll add it to my GL1800 information file.

The system is working okay at present, I tested it by reversing out of the garage and it was fine.
I cleaned up all the electrical contacts etc around the A and B starter relays when I stripped the whole bike over the winter, so hopefully they will remain trouble free.

Kind regards
Don
North Western
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Re: Reverse gear stopping after 2-3 seconds - sorted

Post by North Western »

Sorted...?.....Unfortunately its not.
Goldwing Greg was correct in that the problem had not been resolved.

Went for a run yesterday and used reverse to move out of the garage as a test, failed!..... same as before....all looked okay, but stopped moving after about 2 seconds.
One thing I noticed this time is that the reverse light went out, but no neutral light until I released the reverse switch.

Such is life, good job I don't use reverse as a matter of course, but if its fitted to the bike it should still work.

So, I'll be doing the checks outlined in the service manual and will report on progress.

Don
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Re: Reverse gear stopping after 2-3 seconds - sorted

Post by Techdude2000 »

North Western wrote: Thu Apr 22, 2021 3:17 pm Sorted...?.....Unfortunately its not.
Goldwing Greg was correct in that the problem had not been resolved.

Went for a run yesterday and used reverse to move out of the garage as a test, failed!..... same as before....all looked okay, but stopped moving after about 2 seconds.
One thing I noticed this time is that the reverse light went out, but no neutral light until I released the reverse switch.

Such is life, good job I don't use reverse as a matter of course, but if its fitted to the bike it should still work.

So, I'll be doing the checks outlined in the service manual and will report on progress.

Don
Before you dig into all that, take an ohm meter and measure for continuity from the Reverse A Fuse to the Reverse B Fuse with the key off. If you get close to zero ohms, the B relay is latched up with shorted contacts and needs to be replaced. The neutral light won’t come on unless you release the reverse shift switch, it provides the power for the neutral light when it’s in the out/neutral position.
North Western
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Re: Reverse gear stopping after 2-3 seconds - sorted

Post by North Western »

Thank you....I'll check that.

Regards
Don
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Re: Reverse gear stopping after 2-3 seconds - sorted

Post by Ghostman »

Have you tried going into the side cover and lubing the cables and such on the mechanism? I have to do this every so many years as I notice the activation becomes sluggish.
https://www.gl1800riders.com/threads/my ... 707/page-2
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Re: Reverse gear stopping after 2-3 seconds - sorted

Post by tamathumper »

Be very careful about using it now that it's not functioning correctly - in certain failure modes it can lock the rear wheel and leave you stranded.
'03 GL1800A - Warning: fopen() [function.fopen]: failed to open stream: Sense of humor not found on line 2
North Western
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Re: Reverse gear stopping after 2-3 seconds - sorted

Post by North Western »

Ghostman:........thanks, I've checked the cables and the reverse gear mechanism is working fine.

Tamathumper:........Good advice, I hadn't thought about that...so only testing in the garage and not before or during a run

Kind regards
Don
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Re: Reverse gear stopping after 2-3 seconds - sorted

Post by Techdude2000 »

When the system turns on the reverse light, it has checked the mechanics and most of the electrical system. Usually a shutdown issue like yours points to a power sensing issue with the starter motor load during reverse. This can be caused by the shorted B relay, issues with the reverse resistor under the bike, or the control module itself. Make sure the “RVS A fuse” is not blown.
North Western
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Re: Reverse gear stopping after 2-3 seconds - sorted

Post by North Western »

Good evening Techdude2000.

I checked reverse fuse A to ensure it was not blown, all was good.

As per your earlier post, I checked the continuity between the reverse fuse A and reverse fuse B.
On one side of the fuse sockets I got 2.4 mOhms, and on the other side I got 23.45 and it was increasing slowly the longer I left the probes connected.
My understanding (and an engineer friend) is that means that the starter relays are probably okay.
When you mention the resistor under the bike, is that the finned "heat sink" under the battery tray?
Is it possible that its a bad connection with that?
I did clean all the corrosion off the exterior of that, and cleaned the terminals with contact cleaner and then sealed the connection with silicon grease during the winter overhaul.
I'll pull that connection and ensure that it is good.
Otherwise, my next step will be to remove the body panels and do the continuity checks as per the service manual.

Thanks for your advice and assistance.

Kind regards
Don
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Re: Reverse gear stopping after 2-3 seconds - sorted

Post by Techdude2000 »

North Western wrote: Fri Apr 23, 2021 3:31 pm Good evening Techdude2000.

I checked reverse fuse A to ensure it was not blown, all was good.

As per your earlier post, I checked the continuity between the reverse fuse A and reverse fuse B.
On one side of the fuse sockets I got 2.4 mOhms, and on the other side I got 23.45 and it was increasing slowly the longer I left the probes connected.
My understanding (and an engineer friend) is that means that the starter relays are probably okay.
When you mention the resistor under the bike, is that the finned "heat sink" under the battery tray?
Is it possible that its a bad connection with that?
I did clean all the corrosion off the exterior of that, and cleaned the terminals with contact cleaner and then sealed the connection with silicon grease during the winter overhaul.
I'll pull that connection and ensure that it is good.
Otherwise, my next step will be to remove the body panels and do the continuity checks as per the service manual.

Thanks for your advice and assistance.

Kind regards
Don
Yes, that’s the resistor with the fins.
North Western
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Re: Reverse gear stopping after 2-3 seconds - sorted

Post by North Western »

Update:
As per the advice from Techdude2000 I checked the connections to the resistor under the battery tray.
The battery was removed, and to ease access the plastic tray it sits in was also removed.
The large triple connector was separated, sprayed internally with contact cleaner, and connected / disconnected a number of times to ensure that the terminals were making a good contact.
The battery was temporarily reconnected and reverse was tested....no change.

I went and had lunch and thought about things.
The only time it started working was when I sprayed contact cleaner into the switch housing.
I'm always suspicious of old switches, and after checking the wiring diagrams and reverse schematics, I was aware that the starter / reverse switch does more than just get the starter motor running.
So....what the h*ll, I'll give it another go.
Sprayed contact cleaner into the switch housing, reverse tested......again no change.

Started replacing the battery tray and decided I would give the resistor connection another cleaning.
Separated it, gave a really good dousing with the contact cleaner, then reconnected / disconnected etc. about 12 times.
Put everything back in place, (had to run a tap into one of the bolt holes in the frame to clean up the threads) reconnected battery etc.

Started the bike, pressed the buttons.....it worked!
Moved the bike back and forth in the garage (driving forward, reversing back :lol: ) multiple times and it kept working.
So......my present plan is to strip out and dismantle the starter switch, clean and lubricate the contacts etc.(just in case :D ).
Fred Harmon has already "been there" and I've had a look at his pictures so I know what to expect.

I will keep checking and report back.

Regards
Don
North Western
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Re: Reverse gear stopping after 2-3 seconds - sorted

Post by North Western »

Update again :D

Reverse still working this morning.

I disconnected the battery, then stripped the right handlebar switch cluster and removed both reverse switch and the starter/reverse switch.

The reverse switch was a little bit dirty, but otherwise not bad.
I cleaned and lubricated the contacts / sliding parts and re-assembled it.

The starter / reverse switch was in worse condition.




I cleaned, polished and lubricated the contacts.




Put the switch back together, re-connected the battery, tested everything still works, disconnected battery again and put it all back together.
A final test that the reverse worked and it was time for a rum & coke on the decking in the spring sunshine.

I believe that the cleaning of the resistor contacts was the main reason that the system stared working again (thank you Techdude2000) , however any niggling suspicion about the handlebar switches has been put to rest.

I'll post an update if it fails again or in a few weeks to report that all is well :D

Thank you to all who chimed in with advice, greatly appreciated.

Kind regards
Don
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Re: Reverse gear stopping after 2-3 seconds - sorted

Post by GoldWingrGreg »

I'm glad to hear that it's currently working.

However, if it were my issue, and so that I can confidently sleep better and not wonder if it is really fixed, I would have followed Robs suggestions. Diagnosed the problem, repaired as needed, and done those other PM things after.
North Western
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Re: Reverse gear stopping after 2-3 seconds - sorted

Post by North Western »

Morning GoldWingGreg

I'm a little puzzled, I did follow the suggestions from Techdude2000 (if that is Rob) and it has rectified the problem.
The only part of the Service Manual procedure that I have not yet completed is the 2nd part with the control module....

When I get some time I will indeed remove the body panels and do a continuity check, and if a fault is found with the module I'll replace it.

The information from Techdude2000 indicated that it was a "sensing" problem, and on a 16 year old bike that has spent most of its life parked in the open on the North Sea coast (prior to my ownership), corrosion is a definite likelihood.
Corrosion in an electrical circuit causes resistance / higher loads and it made sense to me that the system would measure / sense that and stop the motor.

I may be wrong, and indeed the condition may return.

I posted the results so that anybody else could read it and give it a try if they were having a similar problem (it does seem to be a fairly common query on the forums).

Thanks for the input, I agree with you that the diagnosis is not yet complete and I will follow through with that last step as I get some time.
I'll update the thread at that time with the results

Take care and stay safe

Kind regards
Don
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Re: Reverse gear stopping after 2-3 seconds - sorted

Post by Techdude2000 »

North Western wrote: Mon Apr 26, 2021 3:20 am Morning GoldWingGreg

I'm a little puzzled, I did follow the suggestions from Techdude2000 (if that is Rob) and it has rectified the problem.
The only part of the Service Manual procedure that I have not yet completed is the 2nd part with the control module....

When I get some time I will indeed remove the body panels and do a continuity check, and if a fault is found with the module I'll replace it.

The information from Techdude2000 indicated that it was a "sensing" problem, and on a 16 year old bike that has spent most of its life parked in the open on the North Sea coast (prior to my ownership), corrosion is a definite likelihood.
Corrosion in an electrical circuit causes resistance / higher loads and it made sense to me that the system would measure / sense that and stop the motor.

I may be wrong, and indeed the condition may return.

I posted the results so that anybody else could read it and give it a try if they were having a similar problem (it does seem to be a fairly common query on the forums).

Thanks for the input, I agree with you that the diagnosis is not yet complete and I will follow through with that last step as I get some time.
I'll update the thread at that time with the results

Take care and stay safe

Kind regards
Don
Just a quick note. Since you mentioned the environment it has lived in, if the issue shows up again, you should pull the left saddlebag and check the reverse regulator assembly for corrosion in its connector. It’s hiding in a frame hole covered by the saddlebag. It is mostly just a box of diodes that are for signal steering of the starter and reverse systems. It has been found to have rain intrusion and crud due to its location close to the rear fender and tire.
North Western
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Re: Reverse gear stopping after 2-3 seconds - sorted

Post by North Western »

Thanks for that.

When I got the bike I found that it had a lot of surface corrosion / oxidisation on the rear frame, the swing arm and suspension linkages were oxidised and devoid of paint, and the linkage needle bearings and collars were rusted badly on the right side.
It had been regularly serviced (at least to oil / coolant / hydraulic changes and brake servicing) but had obviously been kept near the sea.
Possibly under a cover, but also probably on the side stand, and the salt air / breeze always gets in under covers :D
I stripped it over last winter down to the frame / engine and fixed all the corrosion, replaced bearings as required, overhauled the front forks and did the steering head bearings. Cleaned as many electrical connections as I could.

I found that unit quite heavily oxidised externally, but the connector appeared okay so I just cleaned it and sealed with silicon grease.
If the problem re-surfaces I'll include it in the checks.

Kind regards
Don
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luck
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Re: Reverse gear stopping after 2-3 seconds - sorted

Post by luck »

Every now and then i have to clean my reverse switch , poor contact can make the switch quit working and hard to stay on.
Here is how to open it to spray inside the switch with contact cleaner.
viewtopic.php?f=15&t=27038
North Western
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Re: Reverse gear stopping after 2-3 seconds - sorted

Post by North Western »

Thanks.

I actually read your thread while looking for information when the reverse problem occurred, it was useful information.

Kind regards
Don
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luck
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Re: Reverse gear stopping after 2-3 seconds - sorted

Post by luck »

Glad to hear that.
Luc


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