Author Topic: Starter Motor Replacement  (Read 5745 times)

Offline ridenclimb

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Starter Motor Replacement
« on: May 01, 2007, 08:34:14 PM »
I believe the starter on my 2001 Bandit 1200S has gone bad.  I have the Haynes and Suzuki Service manuals but I have found that getting tips from people over and above what is in the manual can be very valuable.

Anyone done starter repair/replacement have any words of advice?  

I am hoping I don't have to order a whole new starter motor but haven't taken it apart yet to see if maybe it's just the armature.

Any tips, thoughts, do's/don'ts appreciated.

David

PS.  I have determined that it is the starter motor since
A) Battery is brand new
B) I am able to bump start the bike
C) Starter motor does not turn over when shorting directly to starter motor from the battery.
2001 Silver Bandit 1200S

Offline pmackie

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Starter Motor Replacement
« Reply #1 on: May 02, 2007, 02:41:47 AM »
Have never had to do it, but it doesn't look that hard to change. I hope you have a manual?

You may be able to have the starter fixed at a local motor/alternator rewind shop. Check the price on a new one first as it may just be worth it to buy a new one.
Paul
2002-GSF600S, Progressive Fork Springs, B12 Shock,
SS Brake lines, EBC HH pads, Leo Vince Ex & Kappa bags.
Ex Bike Mechanic (late 70's), somewhat rusty
32 years in the Fuel/lubes industry(Retired)

Offline JReviere

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Starter Motor
« Reply #2 on: May 02, 2007, 09:39:23 AM »
Riddenclimb:   Other than the starter engage mechanism which slams a gear turned by the starter into mesh with a gear in the engine, the starter is a simple DC electric motor of a high torque design... that means it draws a good bit of power. If you have an Amp meter, test the draw. If it draws nothing, chances are you have on open ckt inside the starter motor.  If it pegs the meter, you have a short ckt inside the starer motor or it is locked up and can't turn.  

You've done basic testing. When you connect it directly to the batt without the starter relay in the ckt... you determined it is indeed the motor.  

If you can bump start the engine, that means the starter isn't locked up to the engine...  

Next, remove the starter and test it again, hot wired to a fully charge high current capable battery.  
If it does not turn, the bearings in the starter are probably bad and allow the armature to "drag" hard enough to prevent it from turning. You can test this by simply tryint to turn it by hand.

If it's locked up, the suggestion of taking it to a starter/motor repair facility is EXCELLENT. These Japanese starters are very common and in many cases the motor components are not motorcycle specific.  Often they are very common Nipendenzo branded inside. I have a John Deere lawn tractor. It has a Kawasaki motor with a Nipendenzo starter... the things are ubiquitious any more.

If you go to a Zuke dealer for a starter.... YOU ARE LIKELY TO BE RAPED.  

If the armature in the starter is not burned or shorted and if the primary field windings are intact, chances are it can be repaired at very little cost... certainly much less than the cost of buying a new starter from Zuke.  

If however, the armature is grounded internally, has burned windings, or the field windings are shot... get out your steel teeth, because it's BITE THE BULLET TIME....  

JR
Live Long and Prosper.

Offline ridenclimb

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Starter Motor Replacement
« Reply #3 on: May 02, 2007, 11:29:50 AM »
pmackie,

I have both manuals (haynes and suzuki).  Priced a new starter from bikebandit.com and it's $300.  Which means if I have the dealer do this job I know I am gonna get screwed.

Jreviere,
Thank you for your post.  You offered some great suggestions.  Will try and take the starter motor out on Thursday and see what kind of progress I can make.  Will keep you all posted so maybe I can save the next guy some aggravation.  I have a 3k mile trip coming up in a few weeks so in the end I may have to suck it up and pay the "stealer" but I am going to do my best to fix it on my own.

Thanks again,

David
2001 Silver Bandit 1200S

Offline JReviere

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Starter Motor Replacement
« Reply #4 on: May 02, 2007, 05:11:26 PM »
David,

If I can help by phone... call my cell:  936  433  0485  if you are on either AT&T or Cingular, it's a totally free call...  

JR
Live Long and Prosper.

Offline ridenclimb

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Starter Motor Replacement
« Reply #5 on: May 03, 2007, 01:20:25 PM »
Thanks JR.  I may take you up on that offer.

I tried to take the starter motor off this morning.  Getting to those bolts which mount the starter in the middle of the bike is a real pain.  Have to find ratchet attachment to get at them.

I also removed the left side cover thinking there was going to be a bolt inside the side cover that I would need to remove to take out the starter.  It looks like there is a gear from the starter which engages the engine but didn't see any obvious bolt.  I am hoping when I get at the two mounting bolts for the starter it will slide right out.  If not the cursing and head scratching may begin. :)

Will let you know how it turns out.

David
2001 Silver Bandit 1200S

Offline JReviere

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Starter Motor Replacement
« Reply #6 on: May 03, 2007, 02:28:34 PM »
I've got only a Haynes Manual.... the OEM Service Manual is much better...   Here's what Hanes says:   Starter Motor Removal:  (1) Remove seat. Disconnect battery negative lead. (2) Peel back the rubber cover remove the nut securing the starter lead to the starter motor. (3) Unscrew the two bolts which secure the starter motor to the engine crankcase. (4) Slide the starter out from the crank case and remove from the machine.   (5) Remove the rubber O ring from the starter and discard. It must be replaced with a new one to form a proper oil seal when reinstalling the starter on the engine.  

I just went and inspected the set up on my bike (an 01 B12S)...  It looks straight forward as it sounds above. There is one heavy black wire coming down and attaching to the top of the starter with a rubber cover.... That will be the hot wire from the bike electrical system.  Removing the negative termal connexion from the battery will kill all the electrix so it's safe to remove the attachment of this big wire from the starter motor.     The back end of the starter toward the middle of the bike, has two vertically mounted bolts. They look to be about 10/12 mm hex heads, but they have Phillips slots in them so a Phillips head screw driver can turn them after they are loosed.  Once they are removed, the starter should just slide toward the middle of the bike (slide from left to right) about 1" or so. It can then be lifted out of the bike and tested/disassembled/repaired/reassembled/reinstalled etc. as needed.  

Hope this helps.

JR
Live Long and Prosper.

Offline ridenclimb

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Starter Motor Replacement
« Reply #7 on: May 04, 2007, 11:50:13 AM »
Hi JR,

Your procedures for starter motor removal were right on.  It was a pain getting to one of the bolts and I had to loosen an oil hose union to get to it but overall not too bad once I did that.  

Got the starter motor out and tested it out of the bike hooking negative directly from battery to the bolt coming out of the motor and touching the positive connection to the housing of the motor.  It cranks away just fine so I guess it's not the starter.

Problem has to be in the relay which does click or somewhere else in the wiring.  Going to put the starter motor back in and see what I can figure out.

Thanks again for your help.

David
2001 Silver Bandit 1200S

Offline JReviere

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Starter Motor Replacement
« Reply #8 on: May 04, 2007, 12:39:38 PM »
That's good news, really.  A starter is EXPENSIVE.  The most common thing happeneing is a loose battery terminal connexion. Be sure all your batt connexions are clean and tight.  They can look "OK" but have corrosion which forms a resistance between the metal of the terminal and the metal of the cable. This can let everything seem to work, but not have "juice" enough to turn the motor. The next thing is the connexions at the relay. Then the next is the starter button itself. Dirty contacts may cause intermittant connexion.  The ckt is a bit complex, but I can trace it out if needed. I have the wiring diagrams.  Remember, there is no power to the starter button with the bike in gear, with the side stand deployed, and with the "Kill" switch off. In fact, the clutch switch must be closed for the starter to get power... You cannot start the bike without pulling in the clutch lever.  

JR
Live Long and Prosper.

Offline ridenclimb

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Starter Motor Replacement
« Reply #9 on: May 06, 2007, 07:38:52 PM »
JR,

I am happy to report that a few minutes ago I was treated to the melodious tones of the bandits exhaust and the bike is up and running just fine.  :))))

Your suggestions were right on and I can't thank you enough for taking the time to help me out.

For anyone else vexed by a similar problem here's what it was for me:

The connection on the positive side, where the wire from the battery meets the box holding the stater relay next to the main fuse was loose just a hair.  The bolt/screw appeared tight from visual inspection but you could turn connector wire slightly under the bolt.  Argh it's always the simple things that can be the biggest pain in the ass.

There was enought juice to fire the starter relay when the starter button was pressed but there was not enough juice to turn the starter motor because of the loose connection.

Once I put the start motor back in and tightened everything up the bike fired up on the first try.  :)))))

Now all I have to do is change the oil, put a fresh set of tires on the bike, bleed the clutch fluid and I should be all set for my trip south.  Headed to NC for my 4th trip down to ride the dragon and many other great roads in the GA/TN/NC area.  Will be staying at the Iron Horse again.  Excellent home base for riding in that area, relatively cheap accomodations, good eats and lots of friendly people.

Take care everyone and thanks again JR.  You saved me from having to pay the "stealer" for something that once I found it was a very easy fix. :)

David
2001 Silver Bandit 1200S
45k miles and still going






Anyway, the bike is running and I am a happy man.  starter
2001 Silver Bandit 1200S

Offline PaulVS

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Starter Motor Replacement
« Reply #10 on: May 06, 2007, 11:07:02 PM »
Glad you got it fixed.

Nice job, JR.   :wink:


Offline JReviere

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Starter Motor Replacement
« Reply #11 on: May 06, 2007, 11:13:22 PM »
Thanx Paul.  I have a sense of having been given so much, when I can give something in return by helping someone, well, it is a sense of great joy to me.

JR
Live Long and Prosper.