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post #1 of 16 Old Oct 18th, 2010, 11:32 am Thread Starter
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Trouble starting

Having trouble starting my K1200lt since Sunday. Battery is fully charged but will only just swing the engine once and then nothing, also the dash lights and the headlights then stop working as well. If I rock the bike in gear the power returns to the dash light and headlight but goes again as the starter button is pressed. These flicker when rotating engine manually while in gear.
I have been unable to find any loose wires to the starter or battery.
Thanking you.
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post #2 of 16 Old Oct 18th, 2010, 11:49 am
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Re: Trouble starting

Quote:
Originally Posted by cluainsi
Having trouble starting my K1200lt since Sunday. Battery is fully charged but will only just swing the engine once and then nothing, also the dash lights and the headlights then stop working as well. If I rock the bike in gear the power returns to the dash light and headlight but goes again as the starter button is pressed. These flicker when rotating engine manually while in gear.
I have been unable to find any loose wires to the starter or battery.
Thanking you.
I guess the first thing I would ask is: how old is the battery? More than 3 or 4 years old, I would have it tested while under load - an automotive shop can do that if you take the battery to them. Your problem resembles what others have experienced - toasted battery that seemed to be good, butt wasn't when thoroughly checked.

What year model is the bike? That might help some folks here to offer a suggestion or two. There have been troubles identified in the past that relate to the 'load shed relay' acting up; butt then it could be something else and I'll leave further discussion to the gurus around here who can spin a wrench much better'n me. Good luck - after you get the battery tested!!
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post #3 of 16 Old Oct 18th, 2010, 12:02 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Trouble starting

Battery is 2 years old gel and fully charged with no loose connections. Symptoms are the same when a power pack is applied to jump start. Will bump start easily. Also on my way home yesterday the headlight and the dashlights were intermittent. It is 2003 model 18K miles. Starter became hesitant on initial start for the last few weeks.Slow at first then started fine. Now will hardly turn at all and power is lost headlight and dash lights and starter button does nothing until you bump the engine slightly in gear the power returns to headlight and starter then will barely turn.
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post #4 of 16 Old Oct 18th, 2010, 12:59 pm
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Re: Trouble starting

Not an expert by any means, but it sounds like you are losing the ground for your starter, and by bumping the starter, you may be grounding through the gears in the tranny, but once you try to start, that ground is gone...I know that people here have referred to a load shed relay, but I think it is nothing more that the negative battery lead bolted to the starter mount, and this evidently has a tendency to loosen up sometimes....sounds like the problem to me. You could probably test this theory by using a jumper cable from the negative battery terminal to the housing of the starter motor, and see if the starter works like that....

RICH CANNON
2000 K1200LT "a great ride"
2002 GL1800 powerful, but boring..(gone)
1979 XS1100 (gone)
1986 VT500 Ascot (gone)
1972 Honda 500-4 (gone)
1961 Lambretta (way gone)
1962 Allstate Compact (gone but not forgotten)
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post #5 of 16 Old Oct 18th, 2010, 6:48 pm
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Re: Trouble starting

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Originally Posted by casualemt
Not an expert by any means, but it sounds like you are losing the ground for your starter, and by bumping the starter, you may be grounding through the gears in the tranny, but once you try to start, that ground is gone...I know that people here have referred to a load shed relay, but I think it is nothing more that the negative battery lead bolted to the starter mount, and this evidently has a tendency to loosen up sometimes....sounds like the problem to me. You could probably test this theory by using a jumper cable from the negative battery terminal to the housing of the starter motor, and see if the starter works like that....

+1 on the loose ground. If it is not that I would say it is stilll a bad battery. If the original battery has a short in it when you add the jumper it still will not work. Try unhooking the bikes battery then jumping the cables to the wires from the + terminal.
With the flickering lights that you mentioned I would check the ground first. You can tighten the bolts on the starter from the top with the correct allen wrench & a long extention.

Jim Davidson
2007 R1200RT
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post #6 of 16 Old Oct 18th, 2010, 6:58 pm
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Re: Trouble starting

If the lights go out but come back on when you move the engine in gear then I think the bolt on the back of the starter is loose. The only way the starter gets a good ground is through that one bolt. You can only get to it if you pull the battery out. 5mm head right at the rear of the starter where it goes into the transmission. I can't seem to find a good picture on this computer but it has been posted before.



Here we go - it is the single bolt that goes into the rear of item 4 (starter).
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John
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Last edited by jzeiler; Oct 18th, 2010 at 7:10 pm.
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post #7 of 16 Old Oct 19th, 2010, 5:27 am Thread Starter
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Re: Trouble starting

Thanks for all the replies. I have checked the earth leads to the starter and the bolt mentioned above and all seem tight.
Is it possible to get at the starter + lead when the tank is removed? Is so I will run both + and earth to starter to see if it turns this way.
Is it possible to remove the starter from the top if it is faulty or must the transmission be removed first? Will probably remove tank anyway to have a look at the relay box. Any thing I should look out for while removing tank?
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post #8 of 16 Old Oct 19th, 2010, 3:44 pm
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Re: Trouble starting

Quote:
Originally Posted by cluainsi
Thanks for all the replies. I have checked the earth leads to the starter and the bolt mentioned above and all seem tight.
Is it possible to get at the starter + lead when the tank is removed? Is so I will run both + and earth to starter to see if it turns this way.
Is it possible to remove the starter from the top if it is faulty or must the transmission be removed first? Will probably remove tank anyway to have a look at the relay box. Any thing I should look out for while removing tank?
Question...You said you checked the earth leads to the starter, how did you do it? If you used a continuity meter, it is possible to measure the ground as continuous but you may be measuring throught the gears and back to other grounds....The only true test as I see it is to put a jumper cable from the ground side of the battery to the case of the starter, and see if it will start. The description you gave at the beginning of this post really indicates a ground fault, not a positive lead fault...

RICH CANNON
2000 K1200LT "a great ride"
2002 GL1800 powerful, but boring..(gone)
1979 XS1100 (gone)
1986 VT500 Ascot (gone)
1972 Honda 500-4 (gone)
1961 Lambretta (way gone)
1962 Allstate Compact (gone but not forgotten)
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post #9 of 16 Old Oct 19th, 2010, 3:53 pm
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Re: Trouble starting

Get a meter, Measure the voltage across the battery terminals while trying to start...

If it falls below 10.5 volts or so , It's your battery...


John

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post #10 of 16 Old Oct 19th, 2010, 4:06 pm
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Re: Trouble starting

John and Rich..........making notes as we speak.........other John.......good idea......I look for any drop of more than 2 volts when under load and deep six the battery..........

"Good Advise" and thanx to all............You too Dick........



Jim and Cyndy
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post #11 of 16 Old Oct 19th, 2010, 6:24 pm
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Re: Trouble starting

There should be a heavy brown wire tie to the frame just behind the starter. Make sure this goes back to the gound tie point behind the battery on the right side and that the 10mm nut is tight.

You can't get to the starter post even with the tank removed but you can get to the other end of the wire that is on the starter. It is on the upper tie point (with the black cap on it) while the ground is on the naked tie point.
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2009 R1200GS (Gone)
2005 K1200LT Ocean Blue Blue Wizard 110 K and counting...
2006 Bushtec Turbo+2 Spell
2004 330 Ci Convertable
K4AN

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But lack DE, MA, RI and CT with the 2005 LT

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post #12 of 16 Old Oct 20th, 2010, 2:46 am Thread Starter
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Re: Trouble starting

Thanks again for your replies. It seems that I have a bad starter as it will not turn when + and Gnd are fed directly to the starter terminals with all else disconnected.
Have begun the marathon to remove the transmission. It promises to be a fast learning curve. Wish me luck as this is my first time.
I'll post the outcome. Regards
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post #13 of 16 Old Oct 20th, 2010, 1:57 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Trouble starting

Update on starter. When removed it was full of oil. Both seals shot and armature badly worn. Bike has only done 31K KM.
Guess I'll start looking for a recon unit if I can get one in th UK. Thanks for your help.
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post #14 of 16 Old Oct 20th, 2010, 4:02 pm
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Re: Trouble starting

Just throwing this out here as a slight possibility.........

With the low miles and your description of bumping the engine (in gear) affecting the starter and what sounds to me like an extreme wear condition of the starter, it makes me wonder if the starter is sometimes spinning while the engine is running or the bike is moving. This could happen if the starter freewheeling clutch feature in the auxiliary shaft is not operating correctly or if the reverse control system is allowing the transmission to drive the starter while the bike is moving. For the reverse to be causing a problem there would have to be a massive issue with the control system and the reverse lever would have to be engaged, so this is very unlikely. But I know there have been a few problems where the starter clutch would not consistently engage, I could see where it could be that it doesn't release. The gear ratio on the starter is listed as 27 to1, so it would be spinning at very high RPM's if it were constantly engaged and clearly would not last for any amount of time. But, if this is happening intermittently, it seems to me that maybe you would see the kind of short starter life that you have.

Maybe you need to verify the operation of the starter clutch........

Again just a thought.

Harvey Burt
Minneapolis, MN
'03 (new on 7/31/2004) LTC Anthracite
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post #15 of 16 Old Oct 24th, 2010, 5:09 am Thread Starter
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Re: Trouble starting

Thanks for that but on inspection it seems to be just the oil that caused the problem. Bearings are perfect but brushes are shot and armature is worn. Lots of residue oil and carbon mixed completely gummed up the brush holder end.
On another note my drive shaft (2003 model) refuses to split at the back end. Had to remove full shaft with the FD. Comes away from FD ok. Do all shafts split in the middle as well?(when I say middle I mean 3/4 of the way back just in front of the rere nuckle) No amount of persuasion seems to want to shift the center splines, its like they are glued or something.Help
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post #16 of 16 Old Oct 24th, 2010, 6:15 am
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Re: Trouble starting

Yes there are supposed to just slide apart. May be time for some penetrating oil. If you get them apart apply some good moly lube after you clean all the rust off.

John
2009 K1300GT Red Rocket
2009 R1200GS (Gone)
2005 K1200LT Ocean Blue Blue Wizard 110 K and counting...
2006 Bushtec Turbo+2 Spell
2004 330 Ci Convertable
K4AN

Have ridden a Motorcycle in all 48
But lack DE, MA, RI and CT with the 2005 LT

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