LC4 Starter help?

Discussion in 'Thumpers' started by ediehl, Jan 4, 2008.

  1. ediehl

    ediehl Been here awhile

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    I bought a nicely maintained '01 LC4 Enduro from a fellow who was a weight nut and had stripped everything he could from it, including the starter. That did not suit me, but he said all the parts were in the box and that it had been working fine when he stripped it. It kick-starts and runs fine.

    Today I reinstalled the starter. I'm pretty sure I found the proper electrical connection---a small cylinder beside the battery, with a thick but vacant connector post that fit the cable from the starter and which was covered with a rubber cap just to keep it from grounding. From looking at the parts manual, it looked correct.


    But nothing happens whan I press the starter button. Zip. No clicking or humming or anything. I tried holding in the clutch in case it's one of those setups, but nada. Fiddled with the engine kill switch, and checked all the fuses--still nothing.

    He did take off some other wiring, including the neutral indicator light (he said the wire looked 'vulnerable' in its exposed position). I think he may have also removed the down-kickstand---no-start wiring setup. I'm wondering if maybe taking off some of that other wiring might have messed up the e-start?


    Any clues? I did see a couple of of disconnected wires under the headlight cover, but could find nothing that they might have come loose from.

    I'm no electrical wizard---could I test the starter by taking it back off and reversing it---leaving it bolted down pointed the wrong way (to be grounded), and then just pushing the cable end against the positive battery terminal to see if it spins?
    #1
  2. halfcab

    halfcab Been here awhile

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    Most if the male/female plugs do match up. One are two of the wires form one plug to another might be a different color.

    There is more them one starter relay besides the main one that powers the starter...the one you hooked the large + cable to.

    I believe the second relay is a "safety" (clutch in, neutral, hold you mouth right and all that BS) relay. I feel sure this safety relay is behind the headlight. I always by-pass that safety crap on a dirt bike. It's been a while and I can't remember what color wire goes where.

    Check to make sure the large starter relay is grounded by the ground wire coming from that relay....the bike has one main fuse next to the batt and three fuses that are behind the head light.

    This is not much help.
    #2
  3. ediehl

    ediehl Been here awhile

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    Thanks---it may not be the full answer, but if I can thread together enough bits of info to get that starter to kick over---mission accomplished!
    #3
  4. JayBo1

    JayBo1 Long timer

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    I've just been through rewiring everything on my 640 to bypass all the safety interlocks. (Very simple modification that bypasses the "auxiliary starter relay"). The clutch lever is supposed to have a switch mounted that connects to a plug behind the headlight cowl. If you don't have the switch you'll have to short out the connection at the plug. The "sidestand down" switch connects just behind the fuel tank but is most likely already shorted. The Neutral switch is also required because the interlock logic ignores the sidestand switch state if the bike is in Neutral. I'll get some photo's for you because it might be slightly different for my case given that I have a 2005 640 Adventure.

    I also must pull my finger out and start my planned thread on the mistakes I have found in the wiring diagram for my bike. Most significantly the "auxiliary starter relay" wiring is shown incorrectly in the manual.
    #4
  5. ediehl

    ediehl Been here awhile

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    I believe I have all the bits of wiring that were removed, but I'm not at all sure where to hook some of it back up (especially the kickstand connections). I'd love to bypass all the safety switches if possible---if JayBo1 or anybody has any good pics or drawings of how that works, it might save my a**.
    #5
  6. JayBo1

    JayBo1 Long timer

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    Okay, here we go. The following article and photo's relate to my 640 Adventure and may be applicable to the 640 Enduro. The easiest way to overcome all the potential problems is to bypass the "Auxiliary Start Relay". This will bypass all the permissive interlock checks that prevent you from:
    - starting the bike while it is in gear without the clutch pulled in
    - riding away with the bike in gear and the sidestand still down.

    Now be very clear about this ... bypassing the auxiliary start relay is probably not legal for road use, may void warranties or insurance cover and bring all sorts of other bad karma your way. I take no responsibility for any outcomes of this modification other than my own outcomes. I have made this modification to my own bike for racing use only. So sue someone else if you're stupid enough to ride away with the sidestand still down or hit the start button and suddenly career over a cliff. Rant off.

    So the first step is to remove whatever cowling/fairing you have so you can access the wiring behind the headlights and then locate the auxiliary start relay.
    [​IMG][/IMG]
    [​IMG][/IMG]
    Okay then. Now remove the relay from the instrument cluster frame. This will require a screw driver to help pry the rubber boot over the guide.
    [​IMG][/IMG]
    Then unplug the relay from the wiring harness connector socket.
    [​IMG][/IMG]
    Now you need to make up a plug to replace the relay but with just two pins used and a shorting link. Now this is where the error in the wiring diagram in my manual comes in.

    The diagram shows the coil wires as being one "re" (coming from the "start" button) and one "or" (coming from the "start/stop" switches). In fact, the "re" should be "ye" and comes from the diodes. The "or" is correct on the coil.

    The other error then relates to the relay switch contact which is shown in the diagram as being one "re-wh" (going to the actual "start relay") and one "ye" (coming from the diodes). In fact, the "ye" should be "re" and comes from the "start" button.

    So, if you want to update/correct the wiring diagram you simply swap the "ye" and "re" wires.

    The link then is to short out the relay contact so goes between the "re-wh" and the "re" wires.
    [​IMG][/IMG]
    You should get the idea from the pictures but let me know if you want better detail and I'll sketch the wiring up. Simply plug the shorting link plug into the standard wiring harness socket.
    [​IMG][/IMG]
    You can see in the photo that the shorting link is across the red and the white/red wires while the yellow and the orange are left unconnected in the plug.
    Now simply cable tie the plug/socket into the original instrument cluster frame location that the auxiliary start relay was mounted to.
    [​IMG][/IMG]
    I hope this helps you out. It is easy and the crimp plug is a standard one that I had a dozen or so of in a crimp kit I bought years ago. General automotive accessory stuff. Have fun.
    #6
  7. halfcab

    halfcab Been here awhile

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    Let's make this easy. Forget about the safety junk for now.

    I have a 01 LC4 E also...there are two wires made in to the main starter relay (not the large batt and starter power wire).

    One wire is ground (-) and the other is a 12V (+) to engage the relay.

    With the relay (-) wire grounded to the bolt on the frame. I would unplug the (+) wire and run a (test only) jumper wire from it to the (+) side of the batt.
    When you take the jumper wire and touch the (+) on batt the starter relay should kick in and send power to the starter.

    If the power wire to the starter is not hooked up you will (should) hear the starter relay click every time you touch the (+) on the batt. If the starter wire is hooked MAKE SURE THE BIKE IS NOT IN GEAR..!
    #7
  8. ediehl

    ediehl Been here awhile

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    Thanks a LOT! I thought I'd have to be taking the bike in to the shop for sure, but the help from the forum ---- especially JayBo1's detailed and easy to follow instructions for bypassing the extra relay, got my starter back in action. I didn't want to reinstall all those "safety" switches---just something more to malfunction, and if I was able to survive my teens without safety switches, I should do just fine now.

    I do have one last quandary, though. I verified that the wiring would turn the starter over, and put it all back together, and then started cranking the starter to fire 'er up. It turned over and over, at a fair speed, I thought---but the engine wouldn't fire. I thought maybe I'd screwed something up, but when I switched back to kick-starting, it will start first or second kick every time. Even after warming the engine up, it still won't start when the starter's turning it over.

    I couldn't find a connector to patch the red and red/white wires together where the connector attached to the secondary relay in the headlight nacelle, so being cheap and impatient, I just cut the connector off and soldered the two wires together, and just taped off the other two. That should be essentially the same as JayBo1's plug solution, I would think?

    The only other possibility I can think of is the battery itself. It seems fine, and on a Battery Tender it goes green in just a few minutes, but it's old---supposedly the original (from a 2001 bike !?). It seems to turn the engine over OK, but I wonder if it's just not sparking enough while it's working on spinning? Any other thoughts?

    One last mostly unrelated and minor issue is the neutral indicator light. I have the orphan wire that screws onto a connector near the front sprocket, but I don't see anyplace to connect it to the wiring under the tank. Probably part of the moderately complex wiring harness coming from the sidestand switch, I'm guessing, which is history. Oh well...
    #8
  9. JayBo1

    JayBo1 Long timer

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    Yep, that'll do fine. The fact that the starter motor is running when you press the start button tells you that the auxiliary start relay has been successfully bypassed. It wouldn't turn the starter otherwise. It sounds like you're winding the motor over but its not firing. I guess there's a possibility that the starter is drawing the battery down so much that there's not enough juice left to create a spark. I'd definetely try a different battery or jumper from another one as a test. Do you have the headlight switched off wheile trying to start?
    My wiring diagram shows a plug with three wires from the Neutral/First/Second position switch. If you have a single orphan wire, can you let me know what colour it is? I'm guessing it will be green/black but from what I can figure all it does is provide neutral indication on the dash. (It's other purpose as an interlock has been bypassed).
    #9
  10. ediehl

    ediehl Been here awhile

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    Yep, my little orphan wire is green/black, with a little 'horse-shoe' shaped connector at one end that looks like it would slide under the little philips head screw near the countershaft sprocket, and then the other end, about 2' away, has what looks like a female push-in connector followed by a second such connector a couple inches further on. I'd like to get my neutral indicator functioning again, but it's no show-stopper.

    I'm going to try to round up a new battery today, keeping my fingers crossed. Even if it seems OK, 7 years is an OLD battery and deserves permanent rest.
    Thanks again, Eric
    #10
  11. JayBo1

    JayBo1 Long timer

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    Cool. That wire is the Neutral one. Basically the Neutral switch takes the wire to chassis ground so all you need to do is get that wire connected to the Neutral switch and the other end needs to end up going to the dash display unit. There will be a split going to a diode behind the headlight mask but don't worry about that one. (You've already bypassed the aux relay see:wink: ).
    I reckon a new battery will see you happy. I get tired after 7 years so I can't be surpised if your battery feels the same way.:lol3
    #11
  12. ediehl

    ediehl Been here awhile

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    Took a longish road ride with some friends yesterday, and a couple times demo'd how the starter would turn the motor over pretty quickly, but no firing. Everybody thought that was odd and that there must be something else wrong. A little dejected, after a long drone home I shut 'er down in the garage, and just for the heck of it tried one more time. Bang! Started right up! Tried it a few more times, no problem, but this AM it's back to turning over briskly, but no ignition. Seems odd that it can turn the motor over that briskly and still not spark, but I've got the new battery charging now, and hopefully that'll do it!

    SO that one green wire just goes from the little connector screw down by the sprocket directly to the neutral indicator light? Do you know what color wire to look for in the headlight nacelle?

    Thanks again, Eric
    #12
  13. JayBo1

    JayBo1 Long timer

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    Well, to me the fact that it has started from the button means it should again. Probably the day of riding put enough charge in to let it start immediately after but after sitting a night it couldn't do it again. Still seems weird to me but hey, that's the way it goes sometimes. I can't see anything about the ignition circuit that makes the starter motor any different from the kickstarter. Hmmm. I wonder if the starter clutch is related to this issue? I don't know much those but there's another recent thread of someone having a problem with that. I think it related to a horrible noise while cranking so maybe no relation, but maybe your's has gone past the horrible noise stage and is now just not turning the crank over?

    The wiring diagram shows that wire colour being maintained right to the dash display unit. I don't know if the 640E uses the same dash unit as the 640A though. If there's a green/black wire going into the instrument then that'll be it I guess. Good luck.
    #13
  14. lhark

    lhark n00b

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    I notice my '02 LC4E shows a capacitor in the system. Is it possible this has an effect on current for the ignition circuit, when you're using the e-start?
    Once the aux starter relay is jumpered, what other wiring, diodes, switches, etc. can be eliminated? I mean, wouldn't it be nice to jumper the red, to red/white, somewhere else in the harness, and eliminate the wires from the ignition switch to the aux. relay? Plus any other extra wires that won't be necessary, (side stand relay, side stand switch, associated wires). I can't be the only guy that thinks there's way too much wiring on these things......I've already tossed the winkers, and relay, and about ready to pull the wires out of the harness for those.
    Crazy?
    #14
  15. JayBo1

    JayBo1 Long timer

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    The capacitor holds a DC charge to keep the clock in the instrument panel ticking along it's merry path to oblivion and also to possibly protect the instrument panel from "spikes" when plugging accessories into the accessory socket. I doubt it can have any affect on the electric starting only.

    There sure is plenty of extraneous crap in the wiring but how far you go to remove stuff is up to you. For my own case I want the bike to be returned to "sellable in standard trim" one day ("only used twice by current owner":lol3 ) but also need to find the balance with "reliable for Safari race conditions". For me this means minimising intrusion in the wiring loom, where the potential for increasing the risk of problems is greatest, while also minimising the extraneous crap that can also cause problems. I have achieved this by replacing most of the front end wiring loom plugs with soldered in waterproof Deustch plugs/sockets, bypassing the aux relay and removing the clutch switch, the sidestand switch and the aux relay itself. I will shortly also be removing the ignition switch (I would hate to have the ignition switch barrel self destruct during the Safari) and replacing it with a marine toggle switch on the Rally cockpit dash. (Taking most of my cues from the factory 690's). Shortly before the Safari I will also remove the "winkers" and flasher relay but that'll about be it.

    So how are you making out there Eric? Got the old girl sorted and firing up on the button?
    #15
  16. lhark

    lhark n00b

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    You sound like you're on the right track. I did quite a bit of this stuff on an XR650L I own, removing the ignition switch, stock lights, gauges, etc.
    It's one of the reasons I want to start pullin' stuff off the KTM, now that I've started messing with it. It's set up with SM rims, headlight, and other items, which complete the basic package, but now the performance items need to be addressed. At least the Honda's wiring diagram was easier to follow. Thanks for the informative piece, and advice. It would be interesting to see if Eric's problem has been solved...
    lhark
    #16
  17. ediehl

    ediehl Been here awhile

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    Yep, she'll fire up fine now with her new battery. One odd thing I've noticed when starting her cold is that she's sensitive about the choke. The motor was turning over but not firing again, and so I turned the choke off and it fired right up. That's especially odd since I never noticed it while kick starting. Oh well, it's been rejetted after an SXC pipe was installed, and so maybe it's just kinda rich at idle. That could be one of the reasons the old battery wasn't doing it---I always had full choke on when it was cold. Hmmm.

    Anyway, all my safety switches are now off. Haven't tried to reinstall the Neutral indicator yet. Seems I've developed an oil leak somewhere up around the valve cover---but that's another story...

    Thanks again, Eric
    #17
  18. JayBo1

    JayBo1 Long timer

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    That's funny - I had come to a similar conclusion about my bike last weekend. I have fitted a 41mm FCR carb and so the choke is a pull button on the body of the carb. It's a little tricky to get to and you can't see it so it's all done by feel. Anyway, I started the bike with the choke on, put my gloves on with it idling and then fiddled about by feel to push the choke knob back in. I then rode off and got about 400m to a left turn intersection. As I went through the intersection the bike coughed and died and wouldn't restart. I have removed the decompressor lever (might put that sucker back on I think!) so it didn't surprise me to find it stopped on TDC and wouldn't turn over. I pushed it to the side of the road and selected 3rd or 4th gear and rocked it backwards and forwards until it would turn over on the kickstarter again. Then I just thought to check the choke for some reason - maybe my subconscience was telling me I hadn't switched the choke off fully. The button clicked in a few more millimeters with a satisfying "click" home and the bike fired up on the button first rotation like the bike was impatient to go and wondering what I was mucking around at! I also know that mine is running rich so that certainly won't help it.

    Eric, now that you're away again, it might pay to just check the charging voltage of the battery to make sure there's not a problem with your charging circuit that resulted in the old battery dying. Simple to check and will give you warm fuzzy feelings. 12 to 13 volts not running and 13 to 14 volts running would make me happy.
    #18
  19. lhark

    lhark n00b

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    I've worked on bikes and atv's for a long time, and every now and then, I run into one that acts like that, when e-starting, with full choke (which is not a choke, but an enrichening circuit, of course) Makes no sense to me, why the starter would slow down when full enrichment is engaged, and speed up with no enrichment.
    I saw on another forum that the mikuni enrichment plunger will fit the FCR, and therefore, would use the stock cable setup. I plan to put one on mine, one of these days, but have no personal experience on whether this is true or not.
    My LC4 with re-jetted stock carb, needs full choke for just a second or two, then I move it to half while it warms up a bit. This process takes less time than my XR650L, for sure.
    #19
  20. MT-Moto

    MT-Moto Ride There

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    2005 640 Adventure -Push on the starter button and all that happens is the starter solenoid clicks. Initially thought that is was just the battery, but now I believe it to be something else

    Basic rundown - Battery measures 12.5V, easily starts with kick start, everything else seems to be functioning as it always has.
    I have checked both of the starter circuit relays and believe they are OK because:
    -Starter solenoid -continuity measures 0.2 -0.4 ohms (seemed to vary slightly as tested multiple times) measured 4V across lugs (only with ignition key on) going to 0V when the starter button is pushed.

    -Starter Relay toggles between 0 / 11.2volts with the start/kill switch pushed on/off -as I would expect
    -Starter Relay toggles between 11.2/10.4volts when the start button is pushed on/off -again as expected, just a small voltage drop due to varying circuit resistance

    cabling seems to be OK
    -0 volts between the (+) battery terminal and the cable lug on starter, when the starter button is pushed (3.8 -4V when starter button released)
    -11.8 volts between the (-) battery terminal and the cable lug on starter, when the starter button is pushed
    -0 volt between the (-) battery terminal and starter housing/engine cases

    -clutch switch seems to be working properly -allowing for starts in neutral but requiring the clutch to be pulled in when in gear (either one still just clicks the starter solenoid though)

    Do the starters typically tend to just fail or do they start to degrade over time? I haven't had any problems prior to this.

    Is there a minimum threshold voltage that wouldn't allow the starter to turn over? seems like it should basically just act like a typical electric motor and turn more slowly?

    I am at a little bit of loss right now on what else to check-out.
    Any thoughts on what else to check would be greatly appreciated or if you believe that my conclusions, on the checks I have done, are note correct.
    #20