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Thread: Strange.......

  1. #1
    Senior Member TW_in_BC's Avatar
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    I've been having a hard time starting my TW lately. Cold or hot, it didn't make much difference, she was just really tough to start.

    Then, I remembered something that I noticed a few weeks back when I replaced my stator coil. When I crank her over, there doesn't seem to be much spark while cranking, but as soon as I let go of the switch, she sparks nicely!

    So, rather than crank and crank and crank, I just give her a brief little "blip" of the starter, and away she goes now...Hot or cold!



    While I don't mind this new method, I have to wonder why it is that the spark doesn't show up until AFTER I've released the starter button. She WILL start if I crank her repeatedly, but it takes a while. By giving her a quick blip, she starts almost instantly.



    - New spark plug

    - fairly new battery < 6months

    - good gas (with Seafoam treatment)

    - anybody who's replaced their stator knows that it can only go in ONE WAY...



    Anybody got any ideas? What's up with the spark thing; shouldn't it make sparks WHILE I'M CRANKING, instead of after I release the button?

    When she's going, she runs like a top with no hesitation or sputtering at all, even at high RPMS.
    2008 TW200
    Southwest corner of BC Canada

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  2. #2
    Member bluedevilfootballman's Avatar
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    when you crank the motor your battery is using most of it's juice on to turn the starter rather than to send fire to the plug. i'd say holding the starter for a shorter amount of time uses less battery then laying on it which causes it to send more juice to the cdi and throw a better spark. if your bike is equipped with a kickstarter i'd bet kicking it would make it fireup even faster.

  3. #3
    Senior Member TW_in_BC's Avatar
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    Thing is, I used to be able to crank it over a few times and have it fire right up. Now, it doesn't seem to want to fire until I stop cranking...strange!



    Unfortunately I don't have a kick-start or I would be using that exclusively!
    2008 TW200
    Southwest corner of BC Canada

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  5. #4
    Senior Member jbfla's Avatar
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    TW_in_BC,



    I wish I had an answer. My TW (2005) is in pretty good shape maintenance and mechanical wise.



    It acts like yours. Crank and crank and it eventually starts. Tap the starter button and it fires up right away.



    When I remove the spark plug, ground it to the engine, and crank there is a pretty weak looking spark. Not a strong, bright blue one, like on my other bikes.



    I seem to remember it used to start up quickly when holding down the starter button.



    Hopefully someone more knowledgeable in electrics will have an answer.



    jb
    2018 Triumph Street Twin..............2016 CB500F
    2014 XT250 ..................................2008 H-D Softail Deluxe
    2008 SV 650..................................2007 DR 650..

  6. #5
    Senior Member peruano's Avatar
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    My 2 cents worth would ride with Tanner. If the starter is drawing down the battery, there is less voltage for the bike's spark. The cause could be a weakened battery or a starter that is sufficiently worn to draw more current than it did in its previously pristine condition. I know my TW starts hard if I try to do it while in gear but with the clutch lever compressed than it does if I am in neutral (clutch lever either position). I'm guess that my motor is just that much harder to turn over when only disengaged with the clutch than with bike in neutral, but whether this is affecting spark or just turnover rpms I can't speak to.

    The easiest thing would be to check the voltage on your batteries. If its lower than optimal, thats probably your problem. Smarter people than me could check the amp draw on your starter (with a multimeter) and probably diagnosis or eliminate potential starter deficiencies. Good luck. Tom
    Tom - TW200 2002, Kawasaki VN 500 2006

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  7. #6
    Senior Member lizrdbrth's Avatar
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    Very likely this is caused by the starter relay, rather than the starter itself.



    Those of you with older bikes can diagnose this fairly simply. If the bike will start quickly when you kick it, but not when you use the button, this is one of the possible culprits. Another tipoff is if the headlight dims to an orange glow when you crank the starter. The majority of your battery's power is being used to form that arc inside the relay. The longer yer on the button, the bigger the arc.



    The points wear and oxidize, and the coils break down over time and if you were to check your starter's amperage draw you would get a false reading and blame the starter, when in fact the relay is arcing.



    Pre-'01 bikes had far better relays than later bikes, and almost any other relay from any other bike made is better than the ones our bikes come with. If the relay turns out to be your problem, get the one for the older bike or one from a bigger bike. I run a KLR650 relay in mine.



    As Peruano said, a bad cell in a battery could cause a similar problem, as well as loose or corroded cables at either the battery, starter or solenoid. If you're absolutely sure these items are ok you should look at the relay.



    I can explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you.

    Powdercoated '87 frame, extended swingarm, YZ fork legs, ATV tire, 14/55, XT350 tank, spliced quick-release seat, disc brake conversion, beeg headlight, beeger rack, Lizrdcooler, Lizrdventz and bunch of other stuff all covered in invisible ink.

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  8. #7
    Senior Member arrowsmith's Avatar
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    I can not tell you why it starts that way but the only thing the battery has to do with starting is to turn the engine. The ignition is a separate system and will work without a battery if you can turn over the engine fast enough.

    I have another one for you.

    My 03 will not start in neutral with the kickstand down but will run in neutral with the stand down.

  9. #8
    Senior Member lizrdbrth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arrowsmith View Post
    I can not tell you why it starts that way but the only thing the battery has to do with starting is to turn the engine. The ignition is a separate system and will work without a battery if you can turn over the engine fast enough.


    This will only occur when using the starter.



    If you don't buy that, try jumping your solenoid across the two large terminals. This simulates a heathy solenoid, and you'll get a normal, fat spark.



    I can explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you.

    Powdercoated '87 frame, extended swingarm, YZ fork legs, ATV tire, 14/55, XT350 tank, spliced quick-release seat, disc brake conversion, beeg headlight, beeger rack, Lizrdcooler, Lizrdventz and bunch of other stuff all covered in invisible ink.

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  10. #9
    Senior Member arrowsmith's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lizrdbrth View Post
    This will only occur when using the starter.



    If you don't buy that, try jumping your solenoid across the two large terminals. This simulates a heathy solenoid, and you'll get a normal, fat spark.
    Sorry but your starter and solenoid are not in any way connected to your spark execpt they turn the flywheel which has magnets that passes the coils for the ignition. The only reason you would get a fater spark would be if the motor turns faster.



    I have a 91 with a kick starter and no battery and it startes fine.

    A TW ignition does not need a battery.

  11. #10
    Banned qwerty's Avatar
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    An old, weak battery will crank and crank, but not spin the crank fast enough for the ignition to develop a hot spark. A weak battery can causing starting problems even though there is no electrical connection between the battery and ignition.




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