XR650L CDI...dead, or dying? Help!

Discussion in 'Thumpers' started by Ricky Rocket, Dec 13, 2009.

  1. Ricky Rocket

    Ricky Rocket Adventurer

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    My 2001 XR650L has a strange intermittent spark. When trying to start it, it fires once but won't run. Backfires like a freakin' cannon through the exhaust when it does fire. I pulled the plug and layed it against the cylinder head. When cranking the engine, the plug fires once when the start switch is engaged and does not spark while the engine spins over. When I let off the starter button, the plug fires once more. I swapped numerous plugs, no change. Unplugged CDI harness and checked connectors...clean and dry. Checked safety switches and kill switch, no problems there. Is this symtomatic of a bad CDI? Any ideas would be greatly appreciated....thanks!
    #1
  2. cyclewizard

    cyclewizard Long timer

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    The first thing to want to do is unplug the pulse generator and check that, if that checks out than your cdi is the culprit.
    #2
  3. XRider

    XRider Almost Lifelike

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    I just went through the same thing on a 650L. It would work and then it would quit. I was the ICM (cdi box). I would also check your pulse gen.
    #3
  4. Ricky Rocket

    Ricky Rocket Adventurer

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    Did the ohm-check on the ignition/kill switch, coil, plug wire, and pulse generator....all within spec (some a little off, but it's 31 degrees F outside and my meter is about 10 years old). I just ordered a CDI from Honda; no dealer in the area stocks one and the cheapest I could get was $148 tax included. I sure hope this does the trick!
    #4
  5. debaisley

    debaisley Long timer

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    where did you order that from ? I think you can get them for less than 100 from cheapcycleparts.com
    #5
  6. mcma111

    mcma111 Long timer

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    Cheap cycle parts

    <table class="size8" bordercolorlight="#CCCCCC" bordercolordark="#999999" bgcolor="#ffffff" border="1" cellpadding="1" cellspacing="1"><tbody><tr class="size8"><td> 30410-MN9-000</td> <td> MODULE, IGN CONT</td> <td align="right" valign="middle">$110.54 </td> <td align="right" valign="middle">$</td></tr></tbody></table>
    #6
  7. Ricky Rocket

    Ricky Rocket Adventurer

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    I had my Honda dealer order it, cheapcycle wants $110.54 and another $9.70 for 7-10 day shipping. If you want it in 4-5 days, shipping goes up to $25.00. I figured I'd give my local dealer some business (they are pretty good to me) and they'll get it to me by this Friday for $140 out the door. I really want to go riding this weekend w/my buds...
    #7
  8. XRider

    XRider Almost Lifelike

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    It sounds like you did the leg work and the ICM is the culprit. I also aprove of you trying to support your local shop.
    #8
  9. markbvt

    markbvt Long timer

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    I had to replace the CDI in my XRL too. It worked fine if it was over 65 degrees or so out, but if it was cooler the bike wouldn't start. With the new CDI it starts without issue even if it's 5 degrees out.

    --mark
    #9
  10. Ricky Rocket

    Ricky Rocket Adventurer

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    Hey, I followed the troubleshooting procedure in the Shop Maual and ended up ordering a new CDI unit from Honda. It didn't work! Can somebody with an XR650L run a test for me? I need to verify that when you spin the motor over with the starter the plug fires consistantly. Mine is firing once when I initially hit the starter button....and again when I let OFF the starter button. When it spins over in between.....no sparking. Put in brand new plug (tried three others), NEW CDI, checked ohms on coil and Pulse Generator (all within spec). I could really use some good input here!! My next step is a new Pulse Generator, but I'd rather know for sure before sinking more money on this fishing expedition.
    #10
  11. trailrider383

    trailrider383 867-5309

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    It sparks when you hit the starter button and again when you release the starter button. Sounds like the problem is in the starter button. Or your key switch.
    #11
  12. Walterxr650l

    Walterxr650l Long timer

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    Make sure your sidestand switch is clean, or Bypass it. Do the same for the kill switch and clutch switch.

    Walter
    #12
  13. showtime45

    showtime45 Been here awhile

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    Mine sparks all the time. I thought I had a bad CDI & it turned out to be the pulse generator.
    #13
  14. Ricky Rocket

    Ricky Rocket Adventurer

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    Showtime, did you actually try it? I want to know that if I can troubleshoot, I'll look to get to the point it sparks continuously. Was yours in neutral with the clutch out and sidestand down? I tried it mine in neutral, clutch lever left alone, and sidestand down. Sparks when hitting the start button...no spark when turning over, and sometimes spark when releasing start button.
    #14
  15. Ricky Rocket

    Ricky Rocket Adventurer

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    OK, I finally got it to spark...it will only spark when the bike is in neutral and the kickstand is up. Anybody know which switch to look for as being at fault? It must be a ground switch...either clutch lever, neutral, or side stand.
    #15
  16. trailrider383

    trailrider383 867-5309

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    Just start with one of the switches and bypass it, if that doesn't fix it go to the next switch and do the same. Then you will find the problem. Your first post says you checked those switches. I guess not well enough aye? :wink:
    #16
  17. Ricky Rocket

    Ricky Rocket Adventurer

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    Well, checked the switches again....all OK. I pulled the headlight shroud and checked the 3-way diode with a diode checker...OK too. I'm going to try and trace the green/white wire from the diode to the CDI two-prong plug. I may have an open circuit there. When the ground is enabled via the side stand switch I get spark. It's only when ground is supposed to go through the neutral switch. However, when in neutral my indicator light goes on meaning I have a good ground. Since the diode is good, I believe I may have a loose or open ground line from the diode back.
    #17
  18. r00t4rd3d

    r00t4rd3d ADV Rider

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    Wish I could have seen this before you ordered your CDI box.

    Sounds like a ground issue. Ive seen a couple people have this problem , most of the time its after the bike is warmed up then it starts back firing and spitting. Was a bad ground to their coil.
    #18
  19. showtime45

    showtime45 Been here awhile

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    Yes I did. I was going to change plugs anyway. You gave me ambition...
    #19
  20. Ricky Rocket

    Ricky Rocket Adventurer

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    This is driving me nuts. It's 9 degrees F here in Connecticut. My garage is freezing and my tools feel like they came from Antarctica. The wires on my XR are so stiff from the cold I'm afraid I'm going to break them by moving them around in this weather. But, I'm determined to fix this by the end of the weeked; I guess I now have a "spare" CDI box to carry with me. I'm still a little ripped I couldn't trace the ground out first.
    #20