CRAZY engine GREMLIN!!??


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shayme98
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CRAZY engine GREMLIN!!??

Post by shayme98 » Sun Dec 23, 2018 8:42 pm



Hey everyone! I really hope someone can help point me in the right direction here. I need some help as I'm clueless how what happened tonight could be possible. I searched the forum for similar, nothing found.

1981 GL1100 Interstate. Has been running excellent with the exception of the intermittent starter spinning issue. Sometimes the starter will spin and won't start, but on the second try it will catch/engage and start up. Never left me stranded anywhere, and seems to have improved since the Mystery Oil and went to a 5/30 oil rather than 15/40. Been spinning less often!

Tonight, I started the bike up and it started up without a hitch, (bike was cold), but it immediately started screaming loudly, a bit high, but not squealing like a belt or anything. Location was coming from the lower part of engine, almost sounded like it was the starter area, rear of engine. I warmed it up with choke on, then turned choke off, engine idled down and sounded normal, but the ABNORMAL screaming just kept going on, and on. The SCREAM was not affected by idle or RPM, as I reved the engine did it's normal sounds, but he scream was constant, did not seem to be affected by the engine speed when blipped.

Then, I turned off the engine at he kill switch. Engine stopped / turned off, but the screaming part which was turning/running, just KEPT ON turning and running, did not slow down, or stop, just kept screaming. I then cut power at the ignition switch turning completely OFF, and the screaming just KEPT on going. The part ran for a good 1-2 minutes after I turned off the engine, and the engine was not running during that time, just the GREMLIN part of the engine. It finally started grinding and clunking and came to a stop.

Then I immediately I turned the ignition key back on, and started it up and it started running no problem, and no more screaming sounds. Like it had never happened.

I thought the issue was Sprag Clutch for my starter intermittently working, but could this be related? I can't imagine what happened, as if the power that had already been generated kept the malfunctioning part going for a 60-120 seconds after all power cut off?

I have a video I took which I can email to anyone interested as I grabbed my phone after cutting off alll power and it kept going.

Any help is appreciated and MERRY CHRISTMAS!!

-Banks



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Aussie81Interstate
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Re: CRAZY engine GREMLIN!!??

Post by Aussie81Interstate » Mon Dec 24, 2018 4:49 am

Well I suppose it could have been a very noisy electric fan that somehow started up. But if you killed the power and it still kept screaming I would be thinking of an idler pulley but that would stop when the engine stopped - same as anything mechanical would have stopped the noise when you stopped the engine - only other thing I could think of could be a stuck starter motor, but again you would think that would stop when you turned off the ignition.. so possibly a shorted starter motor or solenoid caused the starter motor to keep turning??

My brain is hurting now....

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dingdong
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Re: CRAZY engine GREMLIN!!??

Post by dingdong » Mon Dec 24, 2018 7:27 am

I would guess a bad starter solenoid. Welded contacts. Key on key off starter spins. I would also pull the starter and check and service.
Tom

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shayme98
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Re: CRAZY engine GREMLIN!!??

Post by shayme98 » Mon Dec 24, 2018 10:14 am

Thank you for the quick replies.

I posted video of the incident last night so you can hear it.



The starter on it was replaced by PO, but it's a Taiwan part. I bought an old OEM Honda starter last month. I can swap out.

-Banks

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ekvh
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Re: CRAZY engine GREMLIN!!??

Post by ekvh » Mon Dec 24, 2018 10:52 am

What dingdong said. If it does it again, you could carefully pull the cable on the starter to see if it stops. Just remember it is a live cable.

There have been reports of the knockoff versions having the wrong teeth or gear to work properly.

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Mh434
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Re: CRAZY engine GREMLIN!!??

Post by Mh434 » Mon Dec 24, 2018 11:58 am

Personally, I expect the problem is the starter's sprag clutch. The first clue was the intermittent starter engagement - a clear sign of sprag issues, where the rollers aren't engaging properly. The squealing, too, is a classic sign of sprag problems, where one of the sprag rollers doesn't fully disengage (this one is more crucial - you have metal-to-metal contact, and extended use will cause serious damage).

Typically, these problems occur when there is grit, grease, etc. inside the sprag clutch, or one or more of the roller springs has failed or is failing.

Replacing the sprag clutch (well, a rebuild kit installed) would, I'm fairly certain, cure the problem for good. This is not uncommon on the GL1100...

Here's a site confirming what I was saying -

http://www.randakksblog.com/gl1000-star ... haul-tips/

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Re: CRAZY engine GREMLIN!!??

Post by Aussie81Interstate » Mon Dec 24, 2018 4:30 pm

After watching the video - it seems to be a stuck starter motor - but probably from a stuck solenoid. Check those issues first - then worry about the sprag clutch issues. I would run some thinner grade low cost oil through the motor - maybe with some flushing oil - it may help clean out the crud build up in the sprag clutch. It can be that the springs are weak and/or the caps are damaged. I have rebuilt one on a CX500 but not on a GL1100 so don't know if it will continue to cause damage - if it continues to not engage then it may become a long term issue and costly to repair??

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Re: CRAZY engine GREMLIN!!??

Post by dingdong » Mon Dec 24, 2018 5:11 pm

The starter isn't going to run on without power from the solenoid. The solenoid isn't going to supply power to the starter with key off unless the contacts are shorted. The contacts are probably shorted (arced) together because of a starter that is drawing to much current. Look to have to replace or repair both.
Tom

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Re: CRAZY engine GREMLIN!!??

Post by WingAdmin » Tue Dec 25, 2018 1:02 pm

I think you have two problems, as people have said. The first is definitely the starter solenoid, which needs to be replaced - the contacts have arced and welded together once, and it will happen again. That's why the starter motor was stuck running even when the ignition was off.

The second problem is the sprag clutch, which is why the starter was spinning but not cranking the engine.

Drain half a quart of oil from the engine, and pour in a can of Seafoam into the crankcase. Go out and ride the bike (gently) for 100 miles or so. Drain the oil and fill with fresh.

The Seafoam will in most cases dissolve the sludge that is preventing the sprags from engaging, and you'll see the chunks of sludge come out when you drain the oil. This Seafoam treatment fixes the slipping sprag clutch problems 9 times out of 10, although some people have had to repeat the treatment to get it fully cleaned/fixed.

The problem is that there is very little oil flow back where the sprag clutch is, so all the engine oil sludge tends to collect there, until the sprags gum up and stop engaging. It's a common problem with the four-cylinder Wings.

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Re: CRAZY engine GREMLIN!!??

Post by shayme98 » Sat Dec 29, 2018 4:43 pm

Thank you all for the information. I really want to keep this bike for the next few years at least, so I hope this won't be too time consuming. I've already replaced the u-joint which wasn't too bad once I had a lock ring removal/install tool.

Holidays are over, so I headed and and started it again. Hesitated for about a second, then ignition engaged and started up but same racket once again at the starter region. Killed it. Kept making racket. Turned off ignition, kept going. Grabbed a leather gloves and ratchet, removed cable to starter and it shut off. Touched it back to post again on accident, and it then began starting, but couldn't turn engine over as ignition off. Just kept trying to start, no spinning, until I removed wire once more.

I tried the seafoam trick last month. Didn't see any globs come out of case when drained oil, just a smooth normal looking drain. Seemed to help a bit, but still had some intermittent spinning, grinding and then catching down at the sprag clutch. Currently has nearly a quart of mystery oil in there.

I don't want to remove the engine, but will if I have to. Here's my plan, correct me if I'm wrong on how I should proceed:

1) Remove, check, replace starter solenoid.

2) clean out push button with contact cleaner (there is some hesitation now, but probably related to solenoid?)

3) Continue flushing engine with seafoam a couple more times before pull engine.

My main concern is that I will destroy another starter solenoid with the intermittent spinning issue. Is that would could have caused it?

I love this bike. Seems the perfect size, not as big as the newer GL's,comfortable, and looks so cool. I don't want to give up on it yet.

Oh yeah and I forgot, another job I will have to do which I discovered in November after we did the Pacific coast hwy,..leaking oil from timing cover...so either seals.on crank or cams. Cold weather came on and also noticed now very small coolant leak on timing cover, can't find origin but suspect up higher at upper hose.

Maybe I should just pull engine and do sprag clutch, seals, belts and cooling system rubbers. Hoping I won't have a monthly issue cropping up, but at this point I'm only I to the bike 1k total since buying in 09/2018.

Thanks for advice/tips in how you all would proceed. -Banks

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Re: CRAZY engine GREMLIN!!??

Post by Aussie81Interstate » Sat Dec 29, 2018 6:27 pm

Starter solenoid - would be my first process. As expressed - the contacts are possibly welded together causing the starter to continue to turn.. fix that... then worry about your sprag clutch issue...
One step at a time - then you will know how each step is performed instead of doing several things together - and wonder which fixed the issue.

:)

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shayme98
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Re: CRAZY engine GREMLIN!!??

Post by shayme98 » Mon Dec 31, 2018 6:40 pm

I got the starter solenoid out, checked it out, it looks really clean and newer. I don't see anything welded between the contact points for the cables go or where the fuse attaches. Could it simply be an internal issue and should just replace solenoid or can I bench test it?

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Re: CRAZY engine GREMLIN!!??

Post by Aussie81Interstate » Mon Dec 31, 2018 6:55 pm

You would need to dismantle it to check if the contacts are welded together.. sure you can run just a straight continuity test with a multi meter. If you attach a probe to each pole/post of the solenoid - there should be NO continuity.. if you have LITTLE or NO resistance - then you have a CONSTANT path between each of the posts - indicating welded contacts. Pretty simple....

let us know how you go

PS - set your meter to OHMS

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Re: CRAZY engine GREMLIN!!??

Post by Mh434 » Mon Dec 31, 2018 7:53 pm

It’s a safe bet the sprag clutch is still a problem, regardless of the solenoid etc., so if another application or two of Seafoam doesn’t fix it completely you’re going to have to get that deep into it, i’m afraid...

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Re: CRAZY engine GREMLIN!!??

Post by shayme98 » Mon Dec 31, 2018 8:46 pm

Aussie81Interstate wrote:
Mon Dec 31, 2018 6:55 pm
You would need to dismantle it to check if the contacts are welded together.. sure you can run just a straight continuity test with a multi meter. If you attach a probe to each pole/post of the solenoid - there should be NO continuity.. if you have LITTLE or NO resistance - then you have a CONSTANT path between each of the posts - indicating welded contacts. Pretty simple....

let us know how you go

PS - set your meter to OHMS
Ok, set to 200 ohms, and connected...beeped constantly and showed only .2 ohm reading (less than 1 ohm). Is that enough to qualify as zero, and then my solenoid is actually good?

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shayme98
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Re: CRAZY engine GREMLIN!!??

Post by shayme98 » Mon Dec 31, 2018 8:48 pm

Mh434 wrote:
Mon Dec 31, 2018 7:53 pm
It’s a safe bet the sprag clutch is still a problem, regardless of the solenoid etc., so if another application or two of Seafoam doesn’t fix it completely you’re going to have to get that deep into it, i’m afraid...
I will definitely run a couple more cans through before I tear it open. Thank you.

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shayme98
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Re: CRAZY engine GREMLIN!!??

Post by shayme98 » Mon Dec 31, 2018 8:56 pm

I read through again, (ive never trained in electrics.) I believe now I understand, that there was essentially no resistance at .2 ohms, meaning solenoid is bad. Thanks for the help. Looks like I need to order a replacement.

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Re: CRAZY engine GREMLIN!!??

Post by shayme98 » Mon Jan 14, 2019 6:04 pm

I ordered a solenoid for $10 from Amazon. Installation required Dremel tool for shaving down plastic female connector from bike to solenoid.

Installed old original starter I picked from eBay for $55.

Started up like a charm on first turn. Doesn't sound like it's trying hard to start. No issues now at all. Bike even feels to be running smoother if that's possible, or just a placebo effect. Will run more seafoam just in case, and wait to see if spinning ever comes back. I think it may have just been the starter as the primary culprit, and not the sprag clutch. Fingers crossed.

Thank you all for your assistance.

Banks



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