Stumped why engine won't turn over - Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Forum : Kawasaki VN750 Forums
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post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-31-2012, 07:27 PM Thread Starter
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Question Stumped why engine won't turn over

Okay all. I need some fresh insights. I have an ’89 vn750 with just under 26k “indicated” miles (speedo cable was broken when I bought it). Basically stock, with a new stator and upgraded mosfet r/r.

At the beginning of the year I was noticing some intermittent trouble starting her up. The starter motor would spin, but the engine would not turn over. After a few tries, it would kick in and start.

It was intermittent, so I didn’t do anything about it right away. Now it won’t start at all. The starter motor still spins, but the engine won’t engage and turn over. And I don’t know if this is directly related or a secondary problem, but I now have no spark on any plug. Should I have spark if the engine doesn’t turn over? I’m thinking yes, but could be wrong.

I have a Clymer manual and have checked the following:
Battery (AGM, but may be getting old)
Fuses
Starter relay
Starter motor (just rebuilt last summer and still checks good)
Pick up coils
Ignition coils
Igniter
Spark plugs & wires (all new last summer)
Neutral switch
Side stand switch was removed by PO

I don’t know about the JB itself or the starter clutch. Any thoughts? Thanks for your help. I’m missing a lot of good riding weather. Grrrr.

John

1989 VN750
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post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-31-2012, 08:21 PM
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First off im not at home so I cant referance my manual, But im almost positive you will NOT have any spark if the engine does not turn over. The pick-ups inside the left hand cover cant induce voltage to cause a spark, has to do with the timing im sure.
As for the starter issue, it sounds to me the starter is bad. Seems like the solenoid is not kicking out the starter gear to engage the engine. I wonder if u could remove the starter and see if the gear kicks out with the starter button pushed. Not sure if it needs to be grounded but I think it would be. Plus it has some torque im sure and would have to be held firmly. Lets see if someone else agrees with me. Or has a better idea. You might even be able to take it to an autoparts store and they could test it for you.
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post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-31-2012, 08:45 PM
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Sounds like starter is spinning but not engaging to turn the motor, no motor turn no spark.

04-3,200 miles bought July 2011 with 928 miles. Loaded with acessories to many to list here, see my albums for more details! I also make a custom tank bib specific for the 750 if anyone is interested, ck my albums for some pics.
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post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-31-2012, 09:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ifixf18s View Post
First off im not at home so I cant referance my manual, But im almost positive you will NOT have any spark if the engine does not turn over. The pick-ups inside the left hand cover cant induce voltage to cause a spark, has to do with the timing im sure.
I support this info. No spark.

Quote:
Originally Posted by romeobravo172 View Post
Sounds like starter is spinning but not engaging to turn the motor, no motor turn no spark.
I'm not sure the VN750 starter has a starter solenoid like a car. I think the starter motor stays engaged to an idler gear or starter clutch. There could be something inside the case that is not right.

~~C8>
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post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 03-31-2012, 10:03 PM
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Quote:
I'm not sure the VN750 starter has a starter solenoid like a car. I think the starter motor stays engaged to an idler gear or starter clutch. There could be something inside the case that is not right.
you are correct...

remove the starter and inspect the starter clutch and drive gears.
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post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 04-01-2012, 03:01 AM
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X2^^^^^ I agree with slim.

Gordon

1991 VN 750 -"Cosmic Lady" or "Bad Girl"?
Purchased May 16, 2008
Approx.19,300km (12,000 miles)

H-D windshield
Relocated R/R
MF-AGM battery
Fiamm Freeway Blaster horns
F&S luggage rack and engine guard
Kury Offset Hiway pegs
July 13, 2016, Riding on the DARKSIDE now, Classic Radial 165/80-15


TOP TEN THINGS A NEW RIDER/OWNER SHOULD DO. Click on link.
https://www.vn750.com/forum/11-vn750-general-discussion/9127-top-ten-items-you-would-suggest-new-owner-do-his-new-ride.html
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post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 04-01-2012, 07:45 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks guys for your input. Sometimes you're just so close to a situation you can't see the forest for the trees.

I removed the starter motor. The opening is pretty small and I can only see the bottom of one gear (not sure which one it is by name). Don't see anything obviously wrong with it (chipped teeth, etc.), but it moves freely in both directions. Should I not encounter resistance in one direction?

To really see the rest, it looks like I'll have to remove the right side case cover. Is this correct? And if so, can I do this without pulling the engine as the manual says? Just support the front with a jack and remove the right side frame member, then unbolt the case cover?

Sorry for all the questions, but I'm heading into new territory here. Thanks again.

1989 VN750
VROC#31798





I'm bad with names. May I just call you dumb?
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post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 04-01-2012, 11:05 AM
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try the starter manually with booster cables if you can to make sure it is spinning out to engage. now i don't know much about these starters but that was how i used to check others staters
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post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 04-01-2012, 11:31 AM
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Yes, I was reading up on that and it appears that one can remove the right side cover with the engine in place.

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post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 04-01-2012, 12:27 PM
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read chapter 15-26 in the Kawasaki Service Manual... Pay special attention to subsection titled "Starter Clutch Inspection" which is found on pdf page 280. I hope this helps you out some.
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