Intermittent Starting Problem?

danath 34

Hey guys. Wow, has it been a while since I've posted here...

Anyway... Got an issue I was wondering if anyone had any insight into.

Bike sat for about 6 months. Yesterday, I changed the oil, did the brakes, installed a fresh battery, and started riding again. However, I noticed a problem.
When I go to start the bike, seemingly half of the time the starter motor doesn't even turn. Kickstand up, killswitch in 'on' position, key on, clutch pulled in, bike in N. Press starter switch, and the headlights go off like normal, but no starter motor. At this point, I turn the key on and off, and it seems like if I hold the starter switch down for several seconds, finally the starter will kick in, and the bike starts no problem. Other times, it starts immediately when I press the button.

I checked the voltage at the battery with the bike off, and it read 12.9V. I haven't checked the running voltage yet.

Mods include Scorpion alarm (an older one without the ignition lockout feature), pipe and power commander.

I have a theory it may help if I clean the contacts of both the starter switch and the starter relay, but haven't done this yet.

What do you guys think? Anyone see this before? Am I on the right track with cleaning the contacts? Also, when the starter fails on these bikes, will it slowly fail and cause these symptoms, or is it a sudden failure?
dodgy clutch switch or corrosion inside the starter switch...very very common when laid up if not pretreated with some form of light anti corrosion spray oil.
ACF 50, WD40 or silicone spray would be my choices in the UK
Bypass the clutch switch to see if that helps....are you using stock levers..some aftermarket brands aren't 100% perfect fit and the clutch switch doesn't always make contact with every pull.

Last week i turned out of my parking (ver sharp right) and the bike died and the check indicator came on. Tried starting but it was dead. I noticed that when i turned some wires attached to the handle bar coming through the frame in the front left on my BK stretched. I took the pods off and found that theres a plug that pulled out a little. Caused the Starter to not swing and the fuel pump to not prime. Dunno if the busa has a similar plug? Could be that. IT also took power away from my logbox.
When you turn the key to the on position are you waiting for the fuel pump to fully turn on? If you wait and then try to start your bike and it wont start Im betting its the power commander. Had the same problem recently with my busa and thought it was the battery. checked it then double checked and even took it to the autoparts store and got a print out of the diagnostics which said it was good to go. Then I thought maybe it was the starter going bad, etc. etc. Stumbled across a thread on a forum where somebody was having the same exact issue and noted the power commander. Went to the dyno jet website and sure enough its listed in their trouble shooting section. For whatever reason sometimes when the power commander is hooked up to the bike and you wait for the fuel pump to fully engage it wont turn over.....??? So as soon as you turn your key to the on position don't wait on the fuel pump, crank your bike over and see if your able to start it
Thanks for all the replies guys.

Got it sorted. Yesteday I pulled the clutch switch and cleaned it (which was still very clean for having never been cleaned since I bought the bike 5 yrs ago!).
Disassembled the throttle housing, got to the switch, opened it up, and thoroughly cleaned the contacts and everything else. I think it was the starter switch. There was a LOT of brown grime on it, and oddly enough a couple black streaks where it appears to have worn the black plastic and smeared it over the contacts over time.

Everything took me about 40-45 mins without any prior knowledge on how the throttle housing was put together (or taken apart for that matter). If I did it again today, could probably do it in 15 mins.

I've started the bike close to a dozen times since and haven't had any issues. It starts right away, no hesitation.

The only thing I was unsure of, is whether I needed to put some kind of grease on the switch. It appears that from the factory it comes with some kind of grease, but I believe that is why it attracted so much dirt and grime in the first place! I didn't know what kind of grease to put there that wouldn't either cause a closed circuit when it shouldn't be, or interfere with conductivity when a circuit SHOULD be closed, so I just left it bare. Doesn't feel any different when I push the button.
Mine does the same thing and its getting worse the longer it sits. Need to clean starter switch. I just sprayed silicone in there and it's been ok for a couple weeks. It hasn't left me stranded. Remember if it just won't work you can push start it