Electrical Starting Problems - Triumph Forum: Triumph Rat Motorcycle Forums
» Main Menu

Discussion Forums
 » Twins
 » Tiger
 » General
 » RAT

Features
 » Blogs

Motorcycle.com Links

Contribute
 » Photo

Motorcycle Forums
» Insurance
» Sponsors
» Our Partners
»ATV Reviews
»Motorcycle Games

Hinckley Classic Triples 885cc Classic Styled T3's: Legend, Thunderbird, Thunderbird Sport & Adventurer.

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 06-03-2008, 10:55 PM   #1 (permalink)
Lifetime Premium
Site Supporter
Moto Grand Prix
Main Motorcycle: Mutato -- 2K Adventurer
 
jimmyj900's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Leander, Texas, USA
Posts: 2,625
Electrical Starting Problems

I figured I'd put up a list of starting symptoms since they're pretty common, along with some troubleshooting and PM tips.

Copy this and stick it in a file somewhere. It might become useful all of a sudden.

---------------------------------

Starting System Symptoms:

Weak battery symptoms:
-- Slow cranking.
-- Stops cranking suddenly on compression stroke with button pressed.
-- Starts when starter button is released at end of cranking.
Repair:
-- Charge/Test/Replace battery.
Failure Modes:
-- Loss of capacity. Appears to charge, voltage good but no reserve for starting.
-- Won't hold a charge.
-- Low voltage/cell failure.
Preventative Maintenance:
-- Check fluid levels regularly
-- Maintain full charge: Regular riding, trickle charger.

Ignition Coil failure symptoms:
-- Hard starting/misfiring during cranking.
-- Rough idle that can't be tuned out with carb adjustments and carb cleaning.
-- Idle misfire clears with new sparkplugs, returns in a few hundred miles
Repair:
-- Replace: Preferably with Nology for higher reliability than stock Gill coils.
Failure Mode:
-- Shorted turns in secondary resulting in weak spark.
Preventative Maintenance:
-- None
Testing:

Pickup Coil failure symptoms:
-- No spark at all
-- Spark quits with engine hot, returns when engine cool.
-- Note: Pickup coil failure is total. There is no random misfire spark loss.
Repair:
-- Replace pickup coil
Failure mode:
-- Thermal intermittant with long (15-30 minute) period.
Preventative Maintenance:
-- None. Get a spare.
Testing:
-- Ohms checks hot and cold.

Worn starter symptoms:
-- Sometimes won't crank until the bike is rocked in gear.
-- Excessively noisy cranking with a grinding sound.
-- Click from under seat but no cranking.
Failure Mode:
-- Brush wear progressing to commutator damage.
-- Bearing failure related to brush wear.
Repair:
-- Rebuild or replace.
Preventative Maintenance:
-- Maintan battery in peak condition.
-- Follow proper starting procedures. Neutral, clutch in.
-- Crank 5-10 seconds at a time max., switch off for twice as long before cranking again.

Worn sprag clutch symptoms:
-- Very loud rattling when cranking
-- Starter spins but engine doesn't turn
Falure Mode:
-- Breakage
Repair:
-- Replace sprag clutch
Preventative Maintenance:
-- Maintain battery in peak condition.
-- Follow proper starting procedures. Neutral, clutch in.

Worn starter solenoid:
-- Click from under seat but no cranking.
-- Won't crank after rocking bike.
-- Starter continues to run after bike starts and won't stop until the battery is disconnected.
Failure mode:
-- Internal contact damage resulting in non-conduction.
-- Internal contact damage resulting in contacts welding shut.
-- Internal damage/wear prevents solenoid core movement.
Preventative Maintenance:
-- None.
Repair:
-- Replace starter solenoid.
Testing:
-- For no cranking, short across solenoid high-power terminals. Normal operation denotes failed solenoid contacts.

------------------

Please free to comment, make suggestions, etc.

Jim
jimmyj900 is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Old 06-04-2008, 12:33 AM   #2 (permalink)
Senior Member
World SuperBike
Main Motorcycle: 1999 T'Bird Sport
 
lovecuba's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Rangiora, New Zealand
Posts: 1,967
Extra Motorcycle: 1977 T140
Well done Jim. Have copied and printed for future reference. Still a tad bemused though with this holding in of the clutch lever when starting. This is so good if the bike has been running and the engine hot. For cold starts though achieves absolutely nothing as the clutch plates are firmly stuck together. In this case when the starter button is pressed it is up to the starter motor to overcome and separate these plates and it takes quite a lot of energy ( with the clutch lever held in ). Even during Summer an overnight 'sit' will cause the clutch plates to stick together. To alleviate this additional strain on the starting system, and I realise it is 2008, I revert back to the tried and true, as we did in our 'kick start' days to free the clutch and save the gearbox mainshaft from stress when engaging 1st gear. In those days it was a matter of holding in the clutch when in neutral and jumping on the kick start. This prevented the bike, when running, of lurching forward when placed in 1st gear. Now we put bike is 1st gear, hold clutch in, then rock bike backwards and forwards until resistance is broken from stuck clutch plates. This takes quiet a lot of human energy so imagine how our puny starter motor feels when undertaking this chore. Then press button A all the starter motor is then turning over is the crankshaft as the drive to the gearbox has been 'broken'.
lovecuba is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-04-2008, 02:11 AM   #3 (permalink)
Senior Member
SuperStock
Main Motorcycle: 98 Adventurer
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Espanola, NM
Posts: 277
Other Motorcycle: 1980 kz 650 kawasaki
Extra Motorcycle: 1999 kaw Concours
Thanks, Jim
Bbogie is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-04-2008, 03:35 AM   #4 (permalink)
Member
Grand Prix 250
Main Motorcycle: 2000 Thunderbird
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Valdosta, GA
Posts: 71
Other Motorcycle: Wishing for MI3 Scrambler
Thanks, great thread. You've been a lot of help.

Might though put a section on the !@#$&* igniter though.
Kittlemeier is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-04-2008, 07:48 AM   #5 (permalink)
Member
Grand Prix 250
Main Motorcycle: 1995 Thunderbird
 
triumphjan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Netherlands Delfzijl
Posts: 52
Other Motorcycle: Thunderbird Sport 1998
Extra Motorcycle: Estrella BMW R 26
Thanks Jim,
Please free to comment, make suggestions, etc. Jim

The bike dos nothing at all complet dead, look the main Fuse.
and other fuse.




Cheers jan.
triumphjan is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-04-2008, 09:06 PM   #6 (permalink)
Lifetime Premium
Site Supporter
Moto Grand Prix
Main Motorcycle: Mutato -- 2K Adventurer
 
jimmyj900's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Leander, Texas, USA
Posts: 2,625
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kittlemeier View Post
Might though put a section on the !@#$&* igniter though.
I can tell you it's microcontroller based, that the 'dwell time' for the coils is between 0.002 and 0.004 seconds which makes it rather difficult to measure with a DVM and a bunch of other stuff I can't think of at the moment.

I've spent the last two weeks (while waiting for my front brake pads to come in) learning microcontrollers and assembly programming, doing rudimentary electronic interface designs, researching available information and doing timing diagrams while attempting to develop the necessary ignition control algorithms to implement a system.

So what do you want to know?

Jim
jimmyj900 is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-04-2008, 09:08 PM   #7 (permalink)
Lifetime Premium
Site Supporter
Moto Grand Prix
Main Motorcycle: Mutato -- 2K Adventurer
 
jimmyj900's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Leander, Texas, USA
Posts: 2,625
Quote:
Originally Posted by triumphjan View Post
The bike dos nothing at all complet dead, look the main Fuse. and other fuse.
You've got another problem somewhere if either of those fuses opens.

Look for a wire with damaged insulation -- probably in the headlight area or in the red wire to the coils.

Jim

Last edited by jimmyj900; 06-04-2008 at 09:18 PM.
jimmyj900 is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-04-2008, 10:39 PM   #8 (permalink)
Lifetime Premium
Site Supporter
Pole Position
Main Motorcycle: 1996 Thunderbird "Nessie"
 
cafetbird's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Raleigh, NC , USA
Posts: 3,453
Other Motorcycle: 1973 Trump TR7RV "Loosie"
Extra Motorcycle: 1968 BS 350 GTR "Smokie"
Quote:
Originally Posted by triumphjan View Post
Thanks Jim,
Please free to comment, make suggestions, etc. Jim

The bike dos nothing at all complet dead, look the main Fuse.
and other fuse.

Cheers jan.
Also, if nothing happens, check your sidestand switch and your clutch switch. Failure mode - corrosion in switch. You can clean them with contact cleaner and regrease with dielectric grease. I know from experience that the clutch switch is very servicable - haven't had to fool with the sidestand switch yet...
__________________
Scot Dail, IBA #31553; 59 Club #29906
Old Photo Album : New Photo Album
"Thunderbirds are GOOOOOOOO!"
cafetbird is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-04-2008, 10:48 PM   #9 (permalink)
Senior Member
Site Supporter
Legend
Main Motorcycle: '98 Triumph Thunderbird
 
Tbirdnz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Auckland NZ
Posts: 14,107
Other Motorcycle: '05 Honda CB1300
This might be actually better in a blog Jim where we can add other types of faults to it but for now we'll make it a sticky on the forum. Saves searching.


----------------
Ride on !
Tbirdnz is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-05-2008, 01:04 AM   #10 (permalink)
Member
Grand Prix 250
Main Motorcycle: 2000 Thunderbird
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Valdosta, GA
Posts: 71
Other Motorcycle: Wishing for MI3 Scrambler
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmyj900 View Post
I can tell you it's microcontroller based, that the 'dwell time' for the coils is between 0.002 and 0.004 seconds which makes it rather difficult to measure with a DVM and a bunch of other stuff I can't think of at the moment.

I've spent the last two weeks (while waiting for my front brake pads to come in) learning microcontrollers and assembly programming, doing rudimentary electronic interface designs, researching available information and doing timing diagrams while attempting to develop the necessary ignition control algorithms to implement a system.

So what do you want to know?

Jim

What was the middle thing?
Kittlemeier is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Triumph Forum: Triumph Rat Motorcycle Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter your valid email address, that can receive an automated confirmation message. Otherwise, you won't be able to gain full access.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
big problems with electrical? HELP PLS rider955i Maintenance & Workshop Talk 8 03-17-2008 06:10 AM
S4 Electrical Problems showmetheway428 Triumph SuperSports 13 10-20-2007 09:18 AM
Electrical/Starting Problem svanos Hinckley Classic Triples 9 12-31-2006 07:37 PM
Electrical problems Loebie Speed Triple Forum 1 10-04-2005 02:09 PM
Electrical problems- help Sprint Forum 8 04-11-2004 02:07 PM

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.2

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 03:31 AM.



Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0
Motorcycle News, Videos and Reviews
Honda Grom Forum Harley Davidson Forum Honda 600RR Kawasaki Forum Yamaha R6 Forum Yamaha FZ-09 Forum
1199 Panigale Forum Roadglide Forum Honda CBR1000 Forum Vulcan Forum Yamaha R1 Forum Yamaha R3 Forum
Ducati Monster Forum Harley Forums Honda CBR250R Forum ZX10R Forum Star Raider Forum Yamaha Viking Forum
Suzuki GSXR Forum V-Rod Forums Honda Shadow Forum Kawasaki Motorcycle Forum Star Warrior Forum KTM Duke 390 Forum
SV650 Forum BMW S1000RR Forum Honda Fury Forum Kawasaki Versys Forum Drag Racing Forum Ducati 899 Panigale Forum
Suzuki V-Strom BMW K1600 Triumph Forum Victory Forums Sportbikes BMW NineT Forum
Volusia Forum BMW F800 Forum Triumph 675 Forum MV Agusta Forum HD Street Forum Suzuki GW250 Forum
Yamaha Motorcycles Victory Gunner Forum Honda Vultus Forum HD LiveWire Forum Ninja H2 Forum

Garage Plus vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.