electric start is very intermittent... - 600RR.net
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-20-2012, 11:00 PM Thread Starter
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electric start is very intermittent...

Aloha from O'ahu,

The elec. start on my '05 began giving me troubles earlier this year- I'm up to about 36K miles. Initially, the bike would not start when the start button was pushed (starter relay would make a single click). I'd push start the bike, and one out of 3 or 4 times the starter would work fine.

As time goes on, the non-functionality increases and the chances of the elec start working are now slim to none. 98% of the time I get a single relay click and need to push start, but there will be one to three times a month when, by chance, the elec start works without a hitch, regardless if I kill the engine and push the starter button when I'm coasting, or if I try starting it before/after a ride. Very intermittent.

Any clues what might cause it to be essentially nonfunctional, but still work once in a very blue moon? I've followed the thousand 'bike wont start' threads and the service manual, and here's what I've eliminated:

-Charged my battery, boosted with a known good car battery. Battery/power not a problem.
- I've verified that there is good power going from the relay down to the starter by measuring volts inline to the starter itself
- I've replaced the starter relay, hoping for a miracle, no dice
- I've metered the BAS and it is in spec with the manual (although, I did not bypass it, just measure)
- I've deduced the clutch and side stand switches are AOK- when bike is not in neutral and side stand is down, relay will not click (e.g., bike shouldn't start, this is good). When side stand is up and bike not in neutral, same, no click as expected. When I pull in clutch, click returns as the bike should be able to start. No problems here.
- I've taken off the tank to inspect the starter itself, and the power cable is on good and tight (I actually couldn't remove the boot protector- the semi-warm engine at the time didn't help)

I'm at a loss for what would cause the starter to be so intermittent. Push start is a daily routine for me, as it's my daily rider. I'm at a loss, particularly after having verified that everything from the nose down to the starter's power seems to be OK, yet it still starts once in a blue moon. With such intermittent functionality, is there anything else it could be but the starter itself?

Has anyone replaced their starter without removing the carbs (e.g., how much of a headache is it to try and replace by only removing the tank?)

Aloha, have a great week to all, and mahalo for any assistance!
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-20-2012, 11:36 PM
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Not a major mechanic here but in thinking, just cause the power is getting to the starter, the starter sounds bad. Even though you may get the click noise, the starter could be bad. Looked into a few parts.... starter assemblies for around $50 / Starter itself around $150-$200 / selenoids and alternator brushes around $10 - $15. ???Are all battery cables tight and connectors tights without any frayed, split or cramped wires?
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-21-2012, 12:02 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the reply! Basically the only things I haven't physically checked are the starter ground and the physical power connection beneath the starter boot (which is receiving power and appears firmly connected, mind you). The intermittency suggests neither are the culprit, given that one push may yield a start and another push without the slightest movement of the bike will result in just the starter relay giving one click..

Hoping for that golden response that may keep me from replacing the starter. I don't know much about the starter itself to confidently say if a bad starter would produce what I am experiencing. If anything, I'd buy a whole, good used one as a replacement rather than dealing with the individual pieces of the starter.

Mahalo again, and have a great afternoon!
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-11-2013, 10:48 AM
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has this problem been resolved? it seems like im in the early stages of this problem
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-11-2013, 01:10 PM
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I'm not completely sure if this is the same exact scenario that I had.

But it seems like a lot of these starting problems are caused by the killswitch. It's the stupidest thing but if you grab your killswitch and really clean out the copper connections on the inside of the killswitch button it will fix it.

When I opened mine up there was barely anything on there it really wasn't dirty but I cleaned it with some alcohol and a pencil eraser and it fixed my problems.


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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-12-2013, 12:44 AM
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pencil eraser ????.......ok well ill try cleaning it and see what happens
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-14-2013, 11:43 PM
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Def. check your grounds. Could also be a parasitic drain on the battery. Check the battery voltage regularly especially after you ride it. Check it right after you kill the engine, then check it a while later.

PARTING OUT A 2005 CBR600RR!!!
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-18-2013, 06:59 PM
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i installed an eBay starter relay last year because the original one was badly damaged but still working. i thought it might be the eBay relay causing the starting problem so i replaced it with the old relay..... i also noticed that the large ground wire to the relay was almost entirely broken off, so i cut and rejoined the wire..... i haven't been having any problems for about 5 days now..... it was either the relay or that wire, ill give it a couple more days to ensure the problem is completely gone, then ill re install the eBay relay to determine exactly what caused the problem (i really hope it was the wire)
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 09-05-2013, 12:52 PM
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So I have an 03 cbr and I am having the same problem. As I click the button to start the dash dims. I have a brand new battery a new r/r and spark plugs. All my volts are getting sent through from the battery to the stator and back. And push starting is also a routine for me as its a daily driver. Im thinking about just switching out the starter.


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