Question about 1986 Honda VT 500 C Shadow

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Hi my son has a vt 500e we seem to be having trouble with the alternator/starter clutch it does not want to engage some times other times it will if possible could you set us straight your help would be appreciated

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Honda's one way clutch system consists of a large gear with a chain that goes to the starter motor. On the side of the gear is a machined cylinder that the three barrels of the one way clutch plate comes in contact with. The actual one way clutch with the three barrels is bolted to the flywheel. The three cylinders of the one way are always in contact with the machined surface of the gear. When the starter motor spins the big gear it jams on the three barrels and turns the motor over. If the smooth surface of the big gear becomes chattered (not smooth and round) The three barrels will no longer jam/grab and turn the motor over. In other words they will skip. You will need to replace the large gear and the three barrels and the starter should turn the bike over the way it did when it was new.

Posted on Jul 10, 2010

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1 Answer

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Remove the starter & inspect the contacts inside the starter solenoid housing. If they are burnt and/or worn, you will get this condition. Replace the contacts and the plunger, or replace the starter. I change contacts in my shop 3-4 times a week. Quite a common failure. The clicking noise is the plunger hitting one contact, but not the other, due to wear.

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if the battery were disconnected during alternator changeover, look for loose cables at the battery posts, and corrosion on the posts.
if the battery was not disconnected look for collapsed positive plates on one or more cells of the battery..

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