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Hi fellows,

I've got a 1980 GL1100 Interstate that runs just great but I seem to have a problem with sticking starter clutches. If I run it every day, everything works fine, but if it sits for just two or three days then the clutches stick and I have to do some push starting to free them up. Being a little handicapped this is not the way I want to start my day. I've changed the oil twice. The first time I ran 10W40 for about two weeks until it got so thin I couldnt change gears, and then I changed it to the 10W40 4 cycle motorcycle oil. Which seems to work ok, but I was wondering if I should be running something heavier like the 15W50 I have read about. Will changing to a heavier oil fix this? Is there some additive I should try. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

Thanks in advance

G. Ray Glenn Sr. Seattle Wa.

Proud rider of the classic 1980 GL1100 Interstate

"The first REAL Goldwing" IMHO
 

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Heavier oil won't cure it, it's only lighter oil that fixes it. The starter clutch usually spins instead of sticking, when you press the button the thing just spind off the crankshaft.
If you use some engine flush to be sure you dissolve any remaining gunge from the clutch rollers, this should fix it properly. If it still spins afterwards, then I'm afraid it's an engine out task in front of you.
 

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grayglennsr wrote:
Hi fellows,

I've got a 1980 GL1100 Interstate that runs just great but I seem to have a problem with sticking starter clutches. If I run it every day, everything works fine, but if it sits for just two or three days then the clutches stick and I have to do some push starting to free them up. Being a little handicapped this is not the way I want to start my day. I've changed the oil twice. The first time I ran 10W40 for about two weeks until it got so thin I couldnt change gears, and then I changed it to the 10W40 4 cycle motorcycle oil. Which seems to work ok, but I was wondering if I should be running something heavier like the 15W50 I have read about. Will changing to a heavier oil fix this? Is there some additive I should try. Any suggestions would be appreciated.
G. Ray, as Brian said, a heavier oil could very well make it worse (usually heavier oil causes a problem like you have).. You might possibly try a DIFFERENT type of oil like a PAO based synthetic as those usually have a good easy flowing base stock & can act like thinner oil at start-up & still give you a good shift feel as the miles go by.

I will caution you about using an engine flushing agent. A lot of those engine flushing agents are very hard on laminated clutch plates & can damage them. The proper way would be to pull the clutch plates before the crankcase flush (that is impractical though).. If you try to use a flushing agent do the research & MAKE SURE it is clutch plate friendly (I don't know of any off hand but there might be some).

The same with additives,, if the wrong additive is used it could cause future clutch woes. You don't want to use any additives with graphite, molybdenum, or teflon..

Twisty
 

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Welcome to the forum grayglennsr! :waving:

I would tryadding a few ounces of Seafoam or Marvel Mystery Oilto the crank case. Run it 200-300 miles then change the oil and filter. You might need to do it a couple of times but it should loosen up and dissolve oil deposits on the starter clutch that may be causing your problem. I have used Seafoam several times without any problems. Worth a try anyway.

MAKE SURE YOU DON'T OVERFILL THE CRANK! You may need to drain a little oil off before you add.

Bob :11grey:
 

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Mr.1200 is right on, I've used the stuff for 40 years and have never had it damage anything and many times it's done some good. I'm not a great believer of 'miracle in a can' but I do like, MMO, WD40, Seafoam, Greased Lightning, silicon lube and silicon seal, crazy glue and Diet Pepsi! Greased Lightning is a new discovery for me, found it about a year ago, it's one of the best water based degreasers I've ever found. Works good under the hood instead of Gunk degreaser too.
 

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Mr.1200 is right on track. The only thing to add is when you're running the MMO in the crankcase, take it real easy for the next 200-300 miles as the MMO thins the viscosity of the existing oil.

Also, like he said: Clean oil=happy engine. Oil is cheap compared to repair/replacing an engine.

Hobie
 

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Just wondering! I've heard of pushing to free a sticky main clutch but never the starter clutch.
 

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I think the starter clutches usually slip when you press the button, but they can stick as well (weak springs).
 

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lots of great advise here. this is a common problem in these older wings and usually the getting the sludge out of the oil is the key.

I, however, once dropped the engine, and rebuilt the starter clutch. Wished I had this forum, it would have saved a lot of work.

of course, there was also a 1200 on ebay, engine half tore down, and the guy selling because he tired of the project.... it seemed the "engine problem" was a small amount of smoke out the left mufflers on start-up. At least I ddn't do that mistake
 
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