1. Hello Guest. You have limited privileges and you can't "SEARCH" the forums. Please "Log In" or "Sign Up" for additional functionality. Click HERE to proceed.

Starter Clutch problems (I think)

Discussion in 'XJ Technical Chat' started by Huascar L. Hernandez, Feb 5, 2020.

  1. Huascar L. Hernandez

    Huascar L. Hernandez Member

    Messages:
    39
    Likes Received:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Location:
    York, PA
    Hey all,

    First all, glad the site is back up, i was getting worried it was down for good. Found the facebook page, would have been great a quick blurb about why the site was down.

    Anyways,
    I'd love a little advice/assistance/miracle here. I bought an 81 XJ650 summer last year, starter motor was cracked, (push started so I know it ran at least) replaced it and worked on the carbs, front and rear brakes. Heat/Time/Money prevented me from doing much else until recently. Put carbs in, new battery, new plugs but bike wont start. Posted on reddit and was told its the starter clutch.

    Quick video below is me trying to start the bike up. Second video is the starter off the bike (thought the starter was the problem at first)




    Did oil/filter change right after getting the bike, can't remember brand but I know it was 10w-40 motorcycle oil but I'm willing to do a flush again if you guys think its just the oil. Also seen comments on using seafoam but I can't even start her up so not sure if its a good idea.

    I'm so worried that the only fix is to split the case, never done a job that big. If thats the only solution I'm thinking of selling/parting the bike. I just dont think I have the skill/patience for something that big.

    Thanks all
     
  2. Toomanybikes

    Toomanybikes Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,525
    Likes Received:
    675
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Tsawwassen bc
    It does sound like it kicks out after cranking for a few seconds. But until you get it running and flush out the old oil and maybe previous owners incorrect oil it may do that until it gets hot. And battery sounds a bit weak for a good start. Did you do the complete carb “Church of Clean” ? When I do them the bike starts instantly.
     
  3. Huascar L. Hernandez

    Huascar L. Hernandez Member

    Messages:
    39
    Likes Received:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Location:
    York, PA
    I had replaced the oil previously but did not attempt to run it (didnt have the starter replaced yet) but I dont think I let it drip overnight, just a basic, remove oil plug, let it drain, remove filter, put new filter in, put new oil in. I've now let it sit in my garage with the drain plug removed for 2 nights. Would that help? Would another flush with cheap motorcycle oil help? I can get 1L of 20-50 conventional for $7 (cheaper then $17 for 1L for other high end). Could the seafoam be a bad idea if I can't get it started anyways? If i could still do it even without starting it, should I leave the drain plug open for a better drip and with overnight waits? Also, seafoam, do I do it via the access point behind the alternator? I had cleaned the starter but didnt replace the brushes. I've now ordered a rebuild kit from amazon and should have it sometime next week. Also, battery is new, and I had just charged it prior to testing. Next test while I wait will be load testing the battery and pulling out my car battery to use on the bike.

    As for the carbs, I did not do the full church of clean. I followed it without separating the carbs.
     
  4. Timbox

    Timbox Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,580
    Likes Received:
    444
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Location:
    Wisconsin, Tomah
    As for the oil issue I don't think you have a problem of how you changed the oil. Even a fast oil change just letting the oil run out and turn into a small drip is good. Over night dripping is not needed IMHO. I hope that your kit is the correct one, the icon on the top right of every page will get you the correct part for your bike every time. Start a PM with Len he will help you out with anything and everything.

    Did you make sure the little hole in the bottom of the bowls were supper clean? That is a little jet that needs to be open to have the bike start right. That is missed a lot so don't feel bad if you missed it. Take a twist tie and removed the insulation off of it, it is a great size for putting down the hole and cleaning things out. Just hitting the carb with cleaner will not do the trick, I have tried didn't work.

    Do you have any fuel leaking from the carbs? You will tell if the "O" rings on the fuel rail is bad right away, it will start to leak when you have the gas on with vacuum or when on prime. Speaking of prime, make sure you prime those dry carbs too, no fuel in the bowls no start.

    That started in the vid is kicking out, I hope as stared above that once the new oil gets moving in there it will take care of its self.
     
  5. cds1984

    cds1984 Active Member

    Messages:
    692
    Likes Received:
    107
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    Perth, Western Australia
    Definitely seen the fix from flushing the old oil and running new oil through the engine on a slipping starter clutch.

    However, also have pulled a starter clutch to find the solid boss cracked through with no hope of retaining the pressure on the shaft.

    Splitting the engine isn't that difficult, just physically demanding and long winded getting it out and apart and back together and back in.
    Maybe a bit costly if you start replacing all the other bits you notice are in bad shape also, of course.

    Hopefully the oil flush is your fix!
     
  6. Franz

    Franz Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,537
    Likes Received:
    348
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Location:
    Scotland UK.
    I don't think splitting the crankcases is difficult either. In fact l enjoy working on engines. It depends on how much money an owner wants to spend.
     
  7. Huascar L. Hernandez

    Huascar L. Hernandez Member

    Messages:
    39
    Likes Received:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Location:
    York, PA
    Sad to say no go on the oil flush. Rebuilt the starter too since the brushes did need to be replaced. Made sure battery was fully charged. It clearly just slips more often then not. How much of a teardown is necessary to get access to the starter clutch? I mean, I get the need to split the case, but once the case is split, how much "deeper" would I need to go. Also, what tools are needed, I have wrenches and sockets, some torx screwdrivers, hex, pliers and other basic tools. This is my first bike, got my license last year, haven't ridden since the safety course. I dont know if its worth it to do all that work since I'm really itching to get on a bike and ride.

    I keep hearing splitting is gonna be costly, time and money. What's the expected cost? Might just be better for me to part to recoup what I put in (on original purchase, $450) and use that as a down payment to purchase a dealer sold functioning bike.

    Also, I'm in York, PA and willing to trade it plus some cash for a running bike if anyone knows anyone.
     
  8. XJ550H

    XJ550H Well-Known Member Premium Member

    Messages:
    11,801
    Likes Received:
    3,245
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Great North Woods
    a motor swap would be cheaper. you could get a 750 motor for it .
     
  9. XJ550H

    XJ550H Well-Known Member Premium Member

    Messages:
    11,801
    Likes Received:
    3,245
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Great North Woods
  10. Huascar L. Hernandez

    Huascar L. Hernandez Member

    Messages:
    39
    Likes Received:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Location:
    York, PA
    So i just put it up for sale on Facebook, letgo and offerup with a full disclousure of the starter clutch. I'm giving it 1 or 2 months to sell. If it doesn't I'll either jump in and try to do the repair myself or see about doing an engine swap. checked Ebay and 750 engines are like $800, is that the expected price? 650 pricing seems to jump from 300-400. But i'd still be afraid of getting a motor with the same problem. Guessing its a bit of a shot in the dark.
    If I do end up trying the repair myself, any videos of engines similar to the xj that I can follow for an idea of what is all that I would have to do. I've got other questions but I'll ask them once I decide what to do.
     
  11. XJ550H

    XJ550H Well-Known Member Premium Member

    Messages:
    11,801
    Likes Received:
    3,245
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Great North Woods
  12. Huascar L. Hernandez

    Huascar L. Hernandez Member

    Messages:
    39
    Likes Received:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Location:
    York, PA
    I’m inpatient and realized (or at least lied to myself) that no It’s really a small subset of individuals who are willing to put the amount of work required to repair the starter clutch. Sooo I’m gonna try it myself. I’m at the point where I need to detach the engine from the drive shaft, and Looky looky, 1 nut looks pretty badly stripped. I’ve seen prop
     
  13. Huascar L. Hernandez

    Huascar L. Hernandez Member

    Messages:
    39
    Likes Received:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Location:
    York, PA
    So i'm seriously impatient and may be lying to myself but I'm thinking only a select few would be willing to go into this much work and would take quite a while to find a buyer, so instead of the bike sitting there and me sweating it every day I'm going to attempt the repair myself. I'm currently down to detaching the drive shaft joint but now that I removed the rubber boot I see 1 nut is pretty well stripped and the other 3 appear to be going the same route. Tried 1 of the nuts but its crazy tight (assuming thats how the one was stripped. I saw a post on the forums before that said it wasn't necessary to remove at that joint but I should remove the swing arm. Checking if that was accurate or maybe I misunderstood what the purpose of that was. Anyways, suggestions? Thanks
     
  14. cds1984

    cds1984 Active Member

    Messages:
    692
    Likes Received:
    107
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    Perth, Western Australia
    I can't see the engine coming out with the uni-joint attached.
    It is a very tight fit.
     
  15. Simmy

    Simmy Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,335
    Likes Received:
    559
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Waterloo Ontario Canada
    There's actually lots of room, no concern at all.
     
  16. XJ550H

    XJ550H Well-Known Member Premium Member

    Messages:
    11,801
    Likes Received:
    3,245
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Great North Woods
    drive shaft can be pulled out of cross joint
     
  17. Huascar L. Hernandez

    Huascar L. Hernandez Member

    Messages:
    39
    Likes Received:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Location:
    York, PA
    OK, I may be going overboard with the excitement (internally, not really jumping up and down), but I'm freaking happy I was able to remove the engine without to much effort and without having to remove the drive shaft joint. Here are a couple pics of the engine outside the frame. Put a couple boards under my jack to spread the weight better over the underside of the engine and lifted it almost fully above the lower frame bar, enough that I was able to wiggle the engine on top of the bar and then slowly lifted and wiggled the rest of the way up and out, sorta sliding the front of the engine out first in an attempt to sort of turn and give the drive shaft joint some more space to slide out. Since I have the engine out, i'm going to do a full cleanup of the frame and see how it looks. From what I've seen, there isn't any rust on it and the paint doesn't look bad. Def dont have the funds to powder coat it so if it needs any touchups not sure what to do, spray paint likely but unsure of what paint to use. Before that happens though, I want to make sure I can get at the starter clutch and do that work. Gonna do all gaskets so a message to chacal will be on its ways as soon as the engine is apart. The other pack with the orings too probably. Chain guide I read is a recommended replacement too. any other items that could be critical? Bearings aren't going to be done unless there's a major problem (hoping thats not the case). Also, if you notice, the pic on the exhaust side, some of the ports have bolts through them and some had screws. What was original and what do I need to do to make it original? How do I go about getting those out if thats necessary?

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    Timbox and Franz like this.
  18. cds1984

    cds1984 Active Member

    Messages:
    692
    Likes Received:
    107
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    Perth, Western Australia
    Very nice!
    and... I take back the tight fit comment.
    I guess I figured since I got stuck on pulling the engine, the first time, because I left the oil distributor block on it was to tight to leave the uni-joint on... my apologies for the crap info! oops.
     
  19. Huascar L. Hernandez

    Huascar L. Hernandez Member

    Messages:
    39
    Likes Received:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Location:
    York, PA
    @cds, no worries, mine is an 81 maxim, no oil distributor block to worry about.
     
  20. XJ550H

    XJ550H Well-Known Member Premium Member

    Messages:
    11,801
    Likes Received:
    3,245
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Great North Woods
    studsyou are going to want to hone the cylinders before buying rings to make sure you get correct size and nuts are what is used to hold exhaust on.
     

Share This Page