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Click Click went the bike
Ok. So I put a new stator in, get the bike back togther. Nothing happens. Get a new battery nothing. So I figure the starter is bad. Buy parts and tear it out. Brushes were broke off the mounting for them. Rebuild and clean the starter. Click nothing, The solenoid clicks. So I pull the starter out of the bike. I connect a wire from the starter mounting screw to the battery.(ground wire). Connect the Positive battery cable to starter and connect the battery. CLICK, starter does not turn. So I reach for my meter, I put the red lead on the postive side of the battery, black on the starter. Reads nothing. I turn key and kill switch on. Push the start button. Now I read 11.98 volts on the meter, And still the solenoid clicks and the starter does nothing.. So am I doing it right to bench test the sarter. What I think is I rebuild the starter and some how did it wrong.... Any suggestion on what is wrong.. I put new brushes and seals and bearings in the starter. I cleaned the amature up some with fine sandpaper. Just enough to clean the grim of the contact area.. HELP I want to get it running..Thanks
#1 08-04-2012, 01:54 PM,
With the starter installed in the bike try feeding 12 volts to the main power lug on the starter and if it cranks OK then get a new solenoid because they can click but it may not be making contact with the terminals inside because the copper contacts have eroded away.
Ed (Vic) Belanger - 1954-2015
Founder of

#2 08-04-2012, 06:57 PM,
if you did what i did once you may have installed the brushes opposite to the way they should have been,once you "fix" the starter try it w/o reinstalling it into mc first
1987 Aspencade 129K
1986 SEI 93K
2014 Tri-Glide HD 17K

#3 08-04-2012, 07:36 PM,
+1 on brush installation, as NEO has said. The only other thing I can think of, is that you may have not cleaned out the comutator grooves properly?

Sent from my PC36100 using Tapatalk 2
'96 ST1100
Brewerton, NY
#4 08-05-2012, 06:51 AM,
ok so after I tear the starter apart. What am I looking for to see if I put it toghter wrong.......How do I know the brushes are in wrong...
#5 08-06-2012, 04:20 PM,
Did you bench test the starter to see if it spins?
Ed (Vic) Belanger - 1954-2015
Founder of

#6 08-06-2012, 04:26 PM,
Well not off the bike. When I first put the starter back in after I rebuild it I did not.. I have sence then took the starter out an connected to the wiring of the bike. I made up ground wire from the mounting bolt of the starter to the battery. Then connected the main power wire to the starter. Thats when I found out it just clicks.I do have 12 volts right at the starter post. I will test on the bench with out any wiring from the bike tommorrw..
#7 08-07-2012, 04:47 PM,
So, the clicking is from the starter, not the relay or the other way around? The relay is supposed to click, but, I've never heard a GL1200 starter click. To bench test the starter simply use a 12 volt battery and use jumper cables, negative (black) on the case and positive (red) goes on the copper lug on the side of the starter. Starter should start to turn fast as soon as you contact the copper lug with the positive jumper cable. If it does not spin you need to disassemble the starter and examine everything carefully. Use a VOM (volt/ohm meter) to check for continuity of the brushes to the commutator, should be full continuity at each brush, you do this by touching the outside of the brush with one VOM lead and touching the segment on the commutator that the brush is in contact with. If a segment divider is holding the brush up and away from the commutator then you need to either have the commutator turned at a machine shop or you carefully remove the outer section of the segment divider with a tool, I use an old hacksaw blade ground down to fit the groove. Whatever you do just take off enough to make it work, otherwise the brushes will wear rapidly and do not scratch the commutator else it also will wear the brushes rapidly. Make sure the brush connectors are in their correct position, one brush is positive and the other is negative, use the VOM to make certain that the positive brush is not shorting to ground. On the outside edges of the brush plate you'll see 3 little fingers, each one of these fingers needs to be bent up or down slightly because those little fingers are what provides the grounding source for the brush plate, also clean the case where these fingers meet and contact.
Ed (Vic) Belanger - 1954-2015
Founder of

#8 08-07-2012, 06:56 PM,
thanks for the advice. It sure give me some where to look. The clicking does not come from the starter its self. It comes from the soleniod I believe. As soon as I push the start button it clicks and when the volt meter is attach to the battery an the starter lug I have 12 volts at the starter.. Thats why I believe the starter is put toghter wrong.... So off to the garage I go today hopefully. Ill let you know what I find.. Thanks again
#9 08-08-2012, 08:20 AM,
Another common thing that I have seen go bad on the GL1200 starter is when someone only uses one wrench to undo the nut on the lug for the starter cable. You need to hold the bottom nut with a wrench while you loosen the top nut or else you will break the soldered connection inside and then you will need to reposition and resolder the connection inside to make the starter work. Check this first before doing anything else. You can check with a VOM or visually to see the break in the circuit. Good luck.
Ed (Vic) Belanger - 1954-2015
Founder of

#10 08-08-2012, 08:33 AM,
Ok so I put a set of jumper cables on the bike battery. Check the volts at the end of the cable 12.6 volts. I snap the ground to the starter casing. Right where the mounting bolt goes. Grab the positive cable an hold it to the lug on the starter. NOTHING Happen. So I open the starter up. Look around for something wrong. Can't find anything. Clean the end of the armature again. I grab the meter to see if I have contunuaty. I put the red lead on the stud( where the battery cable connects)of the starter. I hold it to the first brush. (the brush that is screwed to the wire that goes to the center of the housing, Positive side, The wires are covered an have a special mount) Its good no restiants. I slid the armature in between the brushes. Check the next brush which I believe is the negative one because it has bear wires and no special mount..nothing. I put the starter back togther. Connect the jumper cables NOTHING again. any more ideas. I think the armature is bad. Time to look up how to test a armature
#11 08-08-2012, 06:25 PM,

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