|The information on these pages is accurate to the best of the author's knowledge. The author can assume no responsibility for the use or misuse of this information by the reader. The reader is expected to secure any other information needed from Service Manuals or other sources. It is up to the reader to determine his/her ability to make any modifications noted. If the reader does not feel qualified he/she should enlist professional help.|
Fix your start solenoid for $6!
By Chet Walters
|Part #9 in the pic in red. The fiche calls it a "switch
assy". Some call it the starter relay or solenoid.
Symptom: bike is "dead". No headlight and the starter button won't start the bike.
Location: Remove the right side cover. Item in question it sits between the fused link and the fuse panel. It has a 30Amp fuse incorporated into it, a wiring plug, and two allen screws connecting it to direct power. There is a spare fuse located in the bottom of the holder boot.
Troubleshoot: Part #9 visibly fried/charred and fused to the wiring plug coming into the top of it.
Parts: The part lists for $84 from the dealer and houses a 30 AMP fuse. Replace as needed, but try this....
Repair: If it's fried, pry the connection apart to expose the spade connectors (three of them on the plug). Clean the connectors/spades and lather with silicone gel or bulb grease. If you can't reach, pop the top of the plastic (green) off and clean the spades. Pop the green hickey back on, (don't forget about those two direct power connections.. don't let them touch one another). Install a new lathered with bulb grease 30A fuse then protect the connections with some electrical tape.
Maintenance: If it's not fried yet and to save yourself grief and expense, just disconnect the plug, clean the connectors and lather it with silicone gel or bulb grease. Do the same with the fuse. It should not be necessary to pop top off the relay itself if not fried, but it makes the spades easier to get at with sandpaper. Use extra tape to insulate vital parts.
NOTE: there are only three wires here. The Green/RED and Yellow/Red and a heavy RED. The green/red goes near the fuse on its "right," the Yellow/Red goes near the fuse on its "left" and the red goes on the spade matching the yellow/red. The fourth spade is empty (the one matching the green/red). You can't buy the connectors on the harness side without buying a whole new harness (big bucks). You can "fix" them using quick connectors from Radio Shack 64-3040.
Radio Shack pack of ring terminals Part #64-3040
Radio Shack pack of spade connectors Part #64-3116
Heat Shrink tubing and electrical tape
Optional Battery Terminal Corrosion Prevent Spray
Phillips screw driver
(one that fits the soft screws of the dog bone EXACTLY)
(to pop cap off starter relay)
Wire stripper and cutter (dikes)
Soldering iron and solder
Needle nose pliers
Toothbrush with baking soda & water
Emery cloth or sand paper
|Click any picture to see enlargement||Disconnect your negative battery terminal and make sure the bike is in neutral. The first step you want to take is to test your start relay/solenoid to make sure you can salvage it. Once you pull the red plug off the top, run a jumper from your battery positive to the relay terminal that the Yellow/Red wire(s) were attached to and touch a jumper from your battery negative terminal to the terminal that the Green/Red wire(s) were attached to. If it clicks or your starter turns, it's good and you can save it. Else, you can get one off eBay. If you do get one off eBay, make these changes to it so you won't get a repeat of this corrosion problem.|
To get to the relay, just pull straight out so it and its holder come off the plastic tabs. If you can salvage the parts, do so, but you have to pull the red plug and discard it then pop the green cap off the relay with your flat blade driver (see below). Pull, the fuse and clean the blades with emery cloth (it's better to get a new fuse 30amp).
|Pop the green cap and discard
Once you pop the cap, it will immediately become apparent why this is a trouble spot. Toss the bad part with the three tangs and try to keep the green cap somewhat intact because it does help shield our new plugs.
|Clip the red wire and solder
We should prepare our fuse holder on one end with a medium ring terminal. Take the plastic off and SOLDER it to the fuse wire. The other end of the fuse holder gets soldered to your freshly clipped red wire and covered with heat shrink. This wire is hot all the time so you want to make sure you don't create a situation where you will have the same problem we are trying to repair. No connectors to heat up here, just solder and a solid screw (see below).
|Solidly connect the ring fuse
At the top of your dog bone fuse, remove the screw CAREFULLY with a screwdriver that fits (#2 or JSO). The screws are soft. I had to use a small electric impact to get this one loose. Insert the screw into your ring terminal and put that back onto the dog bone screw terminal routing it straight up. Cut your dog bone cover up top to make room for the wire to escape/ Spray the dog bone assembly with the battery spray and re-install the cover.
|Prepare your spade quick
If your current spade quick connects came out of the melted red plug unscathed, you can re-use them but make sure they are not corroded. Strongly suggest you replace with the Radio Shack insulated spade connectors Part #64-3116 but if you don't, cover them with heat shrink as shown. Clean the green corrosion off the relay top with a baking soda solution and toothbrush. Sand them with the emery cloth and spray with the terminal anti-corrosion. Make sure the spade connectors fit tightly onto the terminals. Polarity is not important, but it's best to follow the drawing above with the Yellow/Red and Green/Red placed as shown. Remember, the circuit is only hot when you press the start button so it probably won't give you any more trouble. Follow the colors (you may have different numbers of wires in the existing connectors for different models and years).
Test then spray and cover
Once you have all the wires connected, temporarily attach your negative battery cable and test to see if you have ignition and press the start button to make sure the relay works. Stick the green cap back on if you can because it helps shield the terminals. Spray with the anti-corrosion agent and fit the rubber boots back on. Tape in place and add a zip tie to keep the top boot secure.
Route the new wires as necessary and replace the side cover. Feel good about fixing an expensive part for only about $6 and eliminating future problems by correcting an engineering blunder on the part of Honda. Go for a ride!
Chet at Chetspages@rattlebars.com
|More how-to articles for the Valkyrie|
|Feet Heaters||Extra Horns||Four Way Flashers||Carb shims|
|Signal Buzzer||Driving Lights||Horny Lights||Invisible Vista|
|Back to Chet's Valkyrie Page|