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Discussion Starter #1
So I got this bike a couple weeks ago, had been sitting for at least 3 years, unknown how long exactly. It was running well prior to that. Was not left with gas in the tank, was left with oil and brake fluid in it. Came with spare engine and many spare parts. I replaced the ignition cylinder (original key was not present, did have replacement with 2 keys). Replaced the battery this morning (added acid and charged battery last night, it's fully charged and good to go).

This morning, starter would spin and engine would crank. I followed the advice of a mechanic to crank it for a while before replacing oil, to make sure it gets stirred up. I did so, for at least 5 minutes (not all at once, no more than 30 seconds at a time, followed by a short rest). Drained the old oil, flushed it with a quart of new oil and replaced the filter, then filled with new 10W-40. Removed old spark plugs, replaced, and repaired 2&4 plug wiring (had broken from the plug attachment). Added about half a gallon of gas for testing.

Now the engine won't crank. Solenoid clicks, I still have power, but the starter whirrs like a power drill that can't turn the screw anymore. I popped out the spark plugs and looked inside while hitting the starter, saw that it would move the pistons about a millimeter at a time when I hit the button, then the whirring again. I fitted a steel bar into the kickstarter and tried that, wouldn't turn over. Looked in again while moving the kickstarter, and the pistons are moving plenty.

Anybody know what I can do from here? What the problem might be, and dare I ask, a solution?
 

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Recharge the battery. They are small. Doesn't take a lot of cranking to drain one to point it can't crank. If you got a multi-meter. check it. I bet it's at or below 12v. Okay, maybe a little more but it ain't enough. That or you need to check all your ground wires.
 

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Okay. Bear with me. I'm not a motorcycle mechanic. But when I worked on older cars, you had a starter and a thing back then called a Bendix. It was the thing that slammed the little gear into the fly wheel. There is something like that on a bike. It's weak. Need a new one or may mean a new starter. That's my guess. Take it with a grain of salt.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Okay. Bear with me. I'm not a motorcycle mechanic. But when I worked on older cars, you had a starter and a thing back then called a Bendix. It was the thing that slammed the little gear into the fly wheel. There is something like that on a bike. It's weak. Need a new one or may mean a new starter. That's my guess. Take it with a grain of salt.
I'll look into that, I'm not very familiar with motorcycles work, either. This is my first bike and I'm trying to learn as much as I can as fast as I can so I can get this thing running. Truth be told, my usual daily-driver car is dead in the water and I'm borrowing my in-laws' car until I can get a new car or this motorcycle running.
 

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Your starter clutch is a bit different, and it sounds like for whatever reason it isn't grabbing. It resides within the engine case where the starter attaches, and I don't know off the top of my head if there's much you can do.

The good news is your 76 has an auxilliary kick starter. The lever should be behind the left side cover (fake tank), and attaches to aa fitting on the back of the engine, left side, under the seat area. You may be able to kick it to life that way. The GL1000 had this feature 75 - 77.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
The good news is your 76 has an auxilliary kick starter. The lever should be behind the left side cover (fake tank), and attaches to aa fitting on the back of the engine, left side, under the seat area. You may be able to kick it to life that way. The GL1000 had this feature 75 - 77.
Like I said in my first post, kickstarting it doesn't get it going. I can see the pistons moving when I kick it, but it won't run.

I talked to my dad last night (used to be an avid cycler), he advised that I pull out the plugs and watch for sparking when I try to start it. If they do, make sure they're dry and put them in, start it, and check if they're wet (checking for fuel in the pistons). If yes, then it's some other issue. I'm going to do that today, see what I come up with.
 

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I noticed that you replaced the oil with 10-W 40. Some automobile oils are not friendly to the clutch plates on wet clutch motorcycles. You need to check if that bike needs a motorcycle specific oil. The hondas that I run need it,but I am not a Goldwing rider.... A JASO label on the oil approves the oil for Japanese motorcycles.

The Oil I am using now is Rotella T-6 synthetic and has the JASO label. Honda does sell a branded oil BTW. Good luck on your 85 cent motorcycle.:icon_cool:
 

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Like I said in my first post, kickstarting it doesn't get it going. I can see the pistons moving when I kick it, but it won't run.

I talked to my dad last night (used to be an avid cycler), he advised that I pull out the plugs and watch for sparking when I try to start it. If they do, make sure they're dry and put them in, start it, and check if they're wet (checking for fuel in the pistons). If yes, then it's some other issue. I'm going to do that today, see what I come up with.
So you did, sorry about that.

I can confirm what slumlord said about the Shell Rotella oil - I've run it with no problems in my old Goldwings.

I think you need to start at the beginning again with your troubleshooting - check for spark, etc.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I noticed that you replaced the oil with 10-W 40. Some automobile oils are not friendly to the clutch plates on wet clutch motorcycles. You need to check if that bike needs a motorcycle specific oil. The hondas that I run need it,but I am not a Goldwing rider.... A JASO label on the oil approves the oil for Japanese motorcycles.

The Oil I am using now is Rotella T-6 synthetic and has the JASO label. Honda does sell a branded oil BTW. Good luck on your 85 cent motorcycle.:icon_cool:
I used Jason 10W-40 motorcycle oil, which is acceptable according to the manual.

So you did, sorry about that.
No worries, I figured you just missed that part. :71baldboy:
 

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You lost me now. What does that have to do with the starter "whirring"? Of course you aren't getting spark if the engine isn't turning over. Or are you kick starting it now?
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Stupid me, if it's whirring of course it won't spark. Kicked it, I'm getting spark all 4 plugs. I have to get to work, so I'll check for fuel later today. Any words of wisdom until then?
 

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Pull the air filter and give it a shot of ether (or carb cleaner) and see if it sputters to life?

Is there fuel in the bowls?
 

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I may just be unlucky, but every time I use ether on anything other than a diesel that requires it, I end up having to use ether from then on. It's like it gets addicted to the stuff. I use carb cleaner and I'm okay. So somewhat of a warning here.
 

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At the bottom of each carb is a bowl shaped reservoir which holds gasoline. At the bottom of this is a metal drain screw which you will need a flat head screwdriver to open. Screw each of these out a couple turns and see if gas runs out (screw it back in quickly if it does so you don't make a mess.) The idea is also to see if gas is actually making it into the carb body itself.

hogcowboy, sounds like really bad luck! Either will work.
 

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Had it happen too many times that I refuse to use ether anymore. Even had a diesel mechanic work on a dozer and he refused to use ether. Said if it's going to start it will. And I'll be darned if it didn't start. That was after he did a lot of work on it. No doubt it would have fired sooner with ether but he too said you'll ruin it. I always thought it was a wives tell about ether until I saw him work his magic. He did play a lot with the timing though. And the turbo. I can still start that thing without ether. Blew me away!!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Okay, here's the latest.

After being called in to work repeatedly, I got a few spare minutes to tinker last night. I gapped the plugs (forgot to do that in the first place), cleaned the dust out of the air filter, and made sure the battery was fully charged. I put some carb cleaner in the air filter, sealed it up, and tried to start it.

grrrrr-ch-ch-ch-ch-ch-VRUNNNN-vrun-vrun-vrun-vrun-BOOM-put-put-put-pppppppp

So it starts! I can't keep it running for more than about 10 seconds, but it starts! Plenty of white smoke and backfiring, but it's better than nothing! Any helpful advice on what I should do next? When I get off work, I plan to try starting it again. If it's still doing it, I'll double check my plug gaps, make sure I'm getting fuel into the pistons, and go from there. What do you all say?
 

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At this point are you trying to pull gas from the bike's fuel tank, or are you using a small, gravity fed tank?

I guess you need to determine whether fuel is actually making it to the carbs (by opening the bowl drains and seeing if anything comes out.)
 
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