Question about Harley Davidson Harley-Davidson Motorcycle Desktop Telephone

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H-D Wiring Synopsis 1978 FLHS Electra Glide (Without turn signals, spot lights or accessory lighting.) The last couple of years I have been having issues associated with the ignition and possibly the charging system. At the beginning of the riding seasons, I would be able to get a couple of 50 to 90 mile rides in, and then the bike would have difficulty starting. I could sometimes get it started by kicking or push starting it. At first I thought it was possibly related to problems with the Stator, Rotor or Voltage Regulator. Then at the end of the season last year, I was getting a slow turning over of the starter, followed by nothing at all, along with the ground wire on the battery becoming warm to hot. I had the starter looked at by a local reliable establishment, they installed new brushes. I presumed it to have a clean bill of health. This did not fix my problem. Presuming I had a short or poor grounding problem, I decided to install a new wiring harness. In doing so I had made sure all connections are made, and all contacts, were needed, had been wire brushed with a Drimal tool, assuring good grounding. With the ignition switch on, I checked, and had the following: Headlight (High and Low beams), tail light, brake lights (both front and rear), and horn. When I pushed the starter button, I got the slow turning over of the starter, followed by nothing at all. When I went to remove the ground cable from the battery, it was excessively hot. I double checked all the wiring to assure every wire was connected to its intended location. - Installed a new fully charged and load tested DieHard battery. Same result, a slow turning over of the starter, followed by nothing at all, and an excessively hot ground cable. - Installed a new starter relay. Same result, a slow turning over of the starter, followed by nothing at all, and an excessively hot ground cable. - Installed a new starter solenoid and cable from the starter to the solenoid. At the time of those purchases, I was informed by the service manager at the local H-D dealer that, if I would take a heavy gage cable, and connect it from battery to the small post on the starter solenoid, thus isolating my problem to just those three components, I could possibly locate my problem. Same result, a slow turning over of the starter, followed by nothing at all, and an excessively hot ground cable. This then told me my starter was bad. Even though I presumed it to have a clean bill of health, I purchased and installed a new starter. So, with a new Battery, Starter Solenoid and Starter, I use the heavy gage cable, and connect battery to the small post on the starter solenoid. This produced the same result, a slow turning over of the starter, followed by nothing at all, and an excessively hot ground cable. I tried to kick start it. No success. I do not know what else to try. Don Smith I can be reached at

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Sounds like a timing issue. If you have points set them to .018 and then static time the engine.
Hope you have that Shovelhead going by now.

Posted on Jan 03, 2009

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