Question about 1993 Harley Davidson FLSTF Fat boy

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My 92 FLSTF hesitates when I strt it. I have checked the charging system and the battery and all is fine. What would be the next logical step in testing to see if it is a bad solenoid or a bad starter?

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By "hesitation", I assume you hear the starter engage the engine but it "hesitates" a bit before it turns the engine over. If this is correct, everything seems to be working fine. If you push the button and nothing happens for short period of time then you hear a click and the starter turns, I'd suspect the starter relay. The relay is usually mounted on the front side of the lower fender. They are very susceptible to water intrusion. If you replace it, order the relay with the "weather shield" on it.

Even though you "tested" the battery, I would still suspect that this is the most logical problem. The battery on any Softail is subjected to a lot of abuse. Vibration and heat. The heat comes from being enveloped in the oil tank full of hot oil and of course, good old Harley vibrations. Take the battery to automotive parts store and have the battery load tested. Just checking the voltage on a battery does not tell you anything.

One last thing. You may need to replace the large copper contacts in your starter solenoid. Look at the end of your starter and you'll see a five-sided plate held on by three screws. Remove the plate, remove the plunger and spring. Look at the large copper contacts. They are probably burned. You can get a rebuild kit that includes all the contacts and a new plunger. They are much less expensive than a new starter. You may have to remove the starter from the engine on your FatBoy as it is quite tight in there. Make sure you disconnect the battery before working on the inside of the starter.

Good Luck
Steve

Posted on Oct 14, 2010

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