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Twins Technical Talk Technical Talk for Hinckley Triumph Twins: Bonneville, T100, Speedmaster, America, Thruxton, and Scrambler.

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Old 11-16-2012, 12:31 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Main Motorcycle: Bonneville
 
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Location: Arlington, VA
Posts: 52
Bike not starting

Hello everyone,

I'm fairly new to motorcycles and engines in general, though I have fairly good technical knowledge and skill. But, I don't know enough to accurately described everything. So, bare with me.

I have an '05 Bonneville.

I had a need to replace the gear change shaft. Short story, slid out a year ago, was too cheap to buy a triumph shift pedal. Instead, I used a honda dirt bike one. Finally got a triumph pedal used at a good price. When I was hammering it on a month ago, it broke the end off the gear change rod.

Being Triumph, it of course took weeks to get the part. Anyway, I successfully replaced it. I removed the engine covers on both the left and right side, and successfully replaced the rod. I THINK I took care of the gaskets sufficiently. Tightened everything up, tested it to make sure it shifted, then dumped in some oil.

Rolled it outside and after a few turns, it started.

Road it around last night for about 20 minutes, and it was working great. Better than ever actually.

Came out this morning to start it, nothing.

I don't know how the starter works, but it is "turning over" or cranking, or spinning or whatever. A few pops here and there, but nothing lasting. The turns are getting weaker, which makes me think this is a battery problem potentially.

Anyone have any thoughts? Or know of a thread with starter problems? I scanned through several but they didn't seem instructive. Probably because I don't know the correct keywords.

Thank you everyone.

Last edited by benzapp; 11-17-2012 at 12:35 PM.
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Old 11-16-2012, 12:49 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I'm assuming you're carrying out the correct starting procedure as per owners handbook...namely full choke, don't touch the throttle ?
Charge the battery, see how it goes and if it's no better check out the spark plugs..clean & gap or renew.
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Old 11-16-2012, 02:15 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Other Motorcycle: Honda CBF 125 2011
Sounds like your battery is going flat from trying to start it too much.

Don't ever overdo trying to start a bike (or car) as you can damage the starter motor. If it won't go after 5 or 6 attempts, it pays to let the starter motor cool down a bit before trying again. I melted one once. They are high power items and draw a lot from the battery to turn the engine over. You will know when you have knackered it, it will stop working.

I would remove the battery, charge it, replace it back on the bike, check your fuel level, and try again. Like denbow says, full choke, no throttle, clutch in and push the button. It should fire. Make sure the side stand is up if it has a side stand sensor.

If you used the throttle when trying to start it, you may have flooded it. I would take out the plugs and check to see they are not wet with fuel after an extended length of time trying to get it to run.

If that doesn't work, check to see if you have a spark.

I recommend buying a manual for it. I buy one for every bike I buy. Haynes are OK, but the proper Triumph manual would be better.
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Old 11-16-2012, 02:19 PM   #4 (permalink)
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battery likely. cold weather could mean you added some condensation to the plugs while you were trying to start. wet in there is no good.
these bonnies don't love to start in the cold. not sure what your weather was in NYC in October. it was 38 in philly this morning and it took a lot to get started with a fully charged battery. i find a blow dryer at the air intake helps. not directly in though.
there are threads galore on starting problems, including the sticky on at the top of this forum.
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Old 11-17-2012, 05:50 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Main Motorcycle: Bonneville
 
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Twas the battery. What a bizarre coincidence, though the cold may be to blame.

Thank you everyone!
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