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Mechanical and Technical Mechanical and technical topics, help, and discussions

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  • 1 Post By Parilla125
  • 2 Post By tunus
  • 1 Post By Wyckedan
  • 1 Post By Parilla125
  • 1 Post By dragracer1951
  • 1 Post By Chrishil54
  • 1 Post By MMcN49
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Mar 2nd 2016, 09:57 AM   #1
DGA
 DGA's Avatar
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  Jan 2016
  PDX

  An Ape and a Husky
Starter Rebuild

Hi,

I have a little known supermoto from Gas Gas, a 450 ball of goodness. It's an awesome bike, fully spec'ed from the factory with some top shelf components, but also as most hand built European bikes go, it's a bit of an oddity; it has issues starting. This is really funny for a fuel injected bike! Big part of the problem is the starter location which is on front of the motor, surrounded by a hot exhaust pipe, while being drenched with water and caked in dirt/mud from the front wheel.

I need this starter rebuilt. Rumors are it's a Yamaha unit with it's electrical terminals coming out of a new-Gas-Gas-made-hole. My question is, does anyone know someone that they would turn to, to rebuild such a remarkable piece of engineering?

As treads suck without pictures, here she is in her usual state...not fucking running.




Edited by DGA on Mar 2nd 2016 at 10:01 AM
Mar 2nd 2016, 10:03 AM   #2
 Parilla125's Avatar
 
  Jan 2016
  SeaTac

You did not state what the 'starting problem' is. The relay is usually the problem, not the starter. As long as the starter is sealed up good the mud and crap should not cause a problem. If it is an actual starter problem you should be able to take it apart and repair it unless the armature has a burned segment. Then seal it up good before putting it back together.
Most cities have a specific starter/alternator rebuild shop but a lot of the time it is nearly as much as a new starter.
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Mar 2nd 2016, 10:22 AM   #3
DGA
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  Jan 2016
  PDX

  An Ape and a Husky
Thanks Parilla, I'll look into the relay. I'm trying to eliminate all potential problem venues. The starter location is one, as in subsequent years it was put behind the cylinder head.

The starter does not turn the motor over quickly enough, at times, even with a truck battery in parallel. Other times it will fire up on a little bump of the starter. I had this talk with Nels as we were trying to get it fired up. His take on it is that the engine was not spinning fast enough for the ecu to recognize a starting event. If there is a short in the starter it could lead to a drain and not spinning the starter fast enough.

Other part of the issue is that it's a pretty high compression engine. I was going to put in a manual decompressor from a certain model DRZ, but the head needs to be machined. I'd like to work my way through easier venues first.

New starter for this thing is $350...
Mar 2nd 2016, 11:00 AM   #4
 tunus's Avatar
 
  Jan 2016
  PDX

  bikes, all kinds.
Pull out your starter and open it up for inspection. See if there are any burned elements and the condition of the carbon brushes. A starter is easy to take apart, clean and re-assemble if nothing is obviously wrong. You can also take pictures of the brushes and compare them to the rumored yamaha model. If they look the same, just get new brushes, replace them and you should be good to go. If they don't match, then go to one of the local starter shops and they may find brushes from another model that will match.
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Mar 2nd 2016, 11:45 AM   #5
DGA
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  Jan 2016
  PDX

  An Ape and a Husky
Quote:
Originally Posted by tunus
Pull out your starter and open it up for inspection. See if there are any burned elements and the condition of the carbon brushes. A starter is easy to take apart, clean and re-assemble if nothing is obviously wrong. You can also take pictures of the brushes and compare them to the rumored yamaha model. If they look the same, just get new brushes, replace them and you should be good to go. If they don't match, then go to one of the local starter shops and they may find brushes from another model that will match.
Good points, thanks Tunus. That was the next step anyhow...take 'er apart.
Mar 2nd 2016, 12:11 PM   #6
 
  Jan 2016
  Seattle

I was bummed I didn't buy that bike, threads like this change that opinion. I have no advice, but good luck!
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Mar 2nd 2016, 12:39 PM   #7
DGA
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  Jan 2016
  PDX

  An Ape and a Husky
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wyckedan
I was bummed I didn't buy that bike, threads like this change that opinion. I have no advice, but good luck!
Yup, that one! For the money, I'm really not. When she decides to fire up, she runs awesome. With about 270 lbs full of fuel and mid 50'ish horsepower, that little thing moves. I'll eventually figure it out, with the help of others, but if not, nothing wrong with a FCR 41 on there either. I'll probably mock it up from my Husky's carb, but not after I've exhausted all other venues.

Edited by DGA on Mar 2nd 2016 at 12:41 PM
Mar 2nd 2016, 01:05 PM   #8
 Parilla125's Avatar
 
  Jan 2016
  SeaTac

First make sure all the connections between the starter and battery are good. If you have not already, jump directly to the starter if you can and bypass everything but the starter but be careful not to to burn up threads and such. Not sure what type of connection it has but this will let you know if it truely is the starter. Use a good battery and heavy wire (jumper cables) to do the test. Some bikes have weak starters to begin with so any breakdown in electricity becomes an issue.
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Mar 2nd 2016, 01:22 PM   #9
DGA
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  Jan 2016
  PDX

  An Ape and a Husky
Much appreciated. It has a Shorai lithium battery in it with almost double the amperage of what the stock asks for I'll hook up a battery to it and see what she does.
Mar 2nd 2016, 02:01 PM   #10
 dragracer1951's Avatar
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  Jan 2016
  Bremerton

  07 XB12 Buell Lightning
When I built my 470, I used 00 gage wire from a car stereo store. From the battery to teh relay to the starter. Both + and - sides. Then I wired the regulator directly to eth battery instead of through the harness. Then I used the battery out on my RC51,
That ended all starting issues.

The voltage drop across all the original wiring was crazy.
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Mar 2nd 2016, 05:47 PM   #11
 Chrishil54's Avatar
 
  Jan 2016
  Kirkland

  V-Star 1100 Custom
It might be an issue with the starter clutch.
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Mar 3rd 2016, 07:31 AM   #12
 MMcN49's Avatar
 
  Jan 2016
  Small Island Surrounded by Puget Sound

  07 Buell XB12STT, (Two) 12 Suzuki DR650 SE 72BMWR75/5 KIA @ 243K
My $.02.

If your suspicions about the starter are correct, more diagnostics are needed to confirm. The links below should help:

Aftermarket Motorsport Parts & Kits Superstore - Charging, Starting, Ignition
Motorsport Video Tips for Motorcycles, ATVs, Dirtbikes


There's a brush plate inside the starter end cap. Each brush is forced onto the commutator with a spiral torsion spring. Spring force is strongest when the brushes are new, (at full length). Force falls off as brushes wear. Years ago I had an intermittent starter issue because of weak spring tension.

If the winding's check out use spray contact cleaner to clean the internals. If the commutator is badly scored it needs to be turned or replaced. If you have a little hobby lathe in your basement its easy to do. If you have to pay someone to do it you're better off getting a rebuilt.

If the commutator is fine its needs to be polished before reassembly. Kiss it with scotch brite or sand paper. Do not use emory as emory grit will become embedded in the commutator and eat the brushes. Don't forget to clean between the segments.

IMO the brush plate should probably be replaced, they're not than expensive. The plate comes with new brushes and springs all assembled. IMPORTANT: Its best to go with a factory replacement plate over aftermarket.

+1 to what Dragracer said about wiring. Whenever I rewire I always use Ancor tinned wire, it doesn't corrode.

Amazon.com : Ancor Marine Grade Electrical Tinned Copper Battery Cable : Boating Wire : Sports & Outdoors

Wire is sold by gage size, (AWG-American Wire Gage) Gage size represents the wire's cross sectional area. Each gage size has a tolerance, (minimum & maximum cross sectional area).

Imported wire barely makes the minimum. Anchor is always at the max.
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Mar 3rd 2016, 09:54 AM   #13
DGA
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  Jan 2016
  PDX

  An Ape and a Husky
Thanks all. Upgrading the wiring has been on my mind as well as I was fixing to do it to my old truck for a while. This is probably the first thing on my list to do.

Last night, while looking to test a marine alternator at Baxters, the guy behind the counter recommended a local place that rebuilds starters and alternators for everything and anything. Might go talk to them if things look too dingy in there. Even though I've had enough machining classes to use the tools competently enough, I just don't have the access to any of those tools any more.

Thanks for the great suggestions guys.
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