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post #1 of 32 (permalink) Old 01-30-2017, 12:36 PM Thread Starter
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GL1500 Strange starter reverse problem

I have a 1988 gl1500 which developed a strange problem . Went to start it today and got just a click from the solenoid just to the rear of the battery....then nothing . Cycled the Key and got the same one click from the solenoid...then nothing . So next I cycled the key while holding the starter button in and it started immediately . Went to use reverse and it backed a couple feet and the engine quit . I have now repeated this cycle and its the same . Only starts if you cycle the key while holding the start button in , only reverses abit then the engine shuts down . I can start it this way and ride for an hour no problem . Battery is fully charged , terminals are clean and tight , alternator is charging 14 volts , side stand is up ,reverse lever is in correct position and functioning normal , checked all fuses and swapped relays around.... Anybody got any ideas ? thanks
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post #2 of 32 (permalink) Old 01-30-2017, 02:19 PM
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The ignition switch contacts may be bad. You may want to try the following to make sure.

Remove the #11 15A fuse and connect the voltmeter positive prob to the "hot when on" end in the fuse holder and negative prob to the battery negative terminal or to a good ground on the bike.

Then watch if the voltage fluctuates or not while cycling the key as you have done before.

If you can read a steady voltage that means ignition switch is good. Report the result then we may continue troubleshooting.
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post #3 of 32 (permalink) Old 01-30-2017, 05:29 PM
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The very first item to check would be to load test the battery.
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post #4 of 32 (permalink) Old 01-30-2017, 06:42 PM
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The start /reverse system is unique to 1988 and 1989. Why not start here. Listen to the two relays (solenoids) with a stethoscope and make sure both are clicking while trying to start normally. They are relay "a" and relay "B"." You should find both behind the battery under the right hand cover. Relay "A" is the one with the fuse and extra wires while "B" is the smaller simpler one. Both need to click for the bike to start. One is the starter hot and the other supplies starter ground.

Mike

Worked on the "big rigs" for 45 years now just riding my Wing whenever I can. Gets cold in Wisconsin.
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post #5 of 32 (permalink) Old 01-30-2017, 09:42 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for your ideas guys , doing the checks now . Battery is new and load tested and charged , so I know its not the battery....but that's all I know
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post #6 of 32 (permalink) Old 01-30-2017, 11:03 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for your help guys . Both relays are clicking .......... Erdeniz Umman , I pulled fuse 11 and tested voltage and its 12.8 . when I cycle the key ,it only has power when in the on position .
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post #7 of 32 (permalink) Old 01-30-2017, 11:21 PM Thread Starter
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I've got 12.6 on the input side of relay A and only get a little bump, 6v for a millisecond on relay a when starter is pushed . No power on either side of relay b at any time......that's when I try starting it normal . I have a wrecked 89 GL1500 so have lots of swap parts available.....just don't know what to swap
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post #8 of 32 (permalink) Old 01-30-2017, 11:42 PM
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If both relays are clicking you almost have to have an issue with the relays or the cable or connections associated with the relays. The flow of power is from the battery + to the relay "A." If the button is pushed and the relay engages power flows through the relay and to the starter hot post. Check for power at all these places with the button held on. You should have 12 volts from the battery all the way to the starter.
The flow of ground is from the battery - (neg) to the relay "B." If the button is pushed and the relay engages ground flows through the relay and to the starter negative (ground) post. Check for good ground at all these places with the button held on. You should have a good ground all the way from the battery all the way to the starter.
If you have power and ground at the starter the starter must be bad. I know it can't hardly be if the starter works when you use your special method.
Think of it this way. Might help you understand how it works. If you ran a hot cable from the Battery to the starter and a ground cable from battery to the starter the starter would run and engage. That is basically what you have except both have relays that interrupt and connect there respective polarity cable. See attached.
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Mike

Worked on the "big rigs" for 45 years now just riding my Wing whenever I can. Gets cold in Wisconsin.
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post #9 of 32 (permalink) Old 01-30-2017, 11:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wingnprayer View Post
I've got 12.6 on the input side of relay A and only get a little bump, 6v for a millisecond on relay a when starter is pushed . No power on either side of relay b at any time......that's when I try starting it normal . I have a wrecked 89 GL1500 so have lots of swap parts available.....just don't know what to swap
Your close! You should have 12.6 on both sides of "A." Bad connection or relay "A" is bad. Internal connection bad at "A"?????
Relay "B" is ground and should have no power. Just a good ground at the big terminals with the button pushed. Bet if you jump a cable from the hot side of "A" to the starter positive it will start. Probably just jump the big studs on "A" and push the button at the same time bet it will go.

Mike

Worked on the "big rigs" for 45 years now just riding my Wing whenever I can. Gets cold in Wisconsin.
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post #10 of 32 (permalink) Old 01-31-2017, 02:58 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for your help Redwing52 . at least I'm starting to understand how it works . So I replaced both A and B relays and the reverse relay beside reverse fuse off the donor bike , No change . So I checked for power on positive relay A . Red wire has 12 volts and brown/red wire has nothing at any point in the starting process and yellow/red has only a flash on the test light when the key is on and you hear the first loud click , then nothing after that til key is cycled again . Only strange thing as I replaced parts and checked for function , I had no change except when I installed the reverse relay , the first time I tried it , the bike started normal , but then same old cycle ....?? The problem must be where the signal is sent to relay A . something is not telling the relay to close and stay closed til starter button is released , or is that flash the signal and theres a problem like a short or something so it quits sending the signal .
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