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1995 Harley Classic: problems starting....replaced part of the starter, not that. Replaced the battery, not that. What now???

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What is it doing exactly, when you try starting?

Posted on Aug 06, 2008

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I have a 2005 fatboy and i replaced the battery. when i hit the start button the starter relay clicks and nothing happens. all my lights work and the fuel pump kicks on like normal. it just wont start


Sound like starter is stuck. Try giving it a tap with a rubber mallet, while pressing start button. If this does not work, put bike in gear and push it forward a few feet, then try again to start it. If still nothing try using jumper cables on battery, then start. If no go you have a bad starter.

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Pull the spark plugs out and hit the starter. This will make sure that the engine is not locked up. If the starter does not turn the engine, put the bike in first gear and have someone push you, making sure the engine is free. If the engine is OK, your starter is probably jammed and needs replaced. That wire getting hot is a dead giveaway something is locked up tight...starter or engine. If ya have a large hi-performance engine in the bike, chances are your stock starter won't do the job.

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97 fatboy starter engages but will not stay engaged.


I would check the starter clutch its self first. It is a one way clutch so if you remove the starter and disassemble it to the starter clutch and hold the starter clutch in one hand and use your other hand to turn the starter clutch gear, it should only turn in one direction.

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1991 harley FXR won't start; replaced bad starter. it still won't start


- If the starter is turning the motor , I dont understand why u replaced the relay and the ignition....but - thats water under the bridge now .... Open the primary and check the jack shaft... put a pliers on it - pull it out and turn it 1/4 turn a few times - make sure its not binding. Take a look at the bushing on the outer primary.... may need to bevel the edges a little. Make sure the battery is charged enough to give the engine a few strong turns. Let me know what you find

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1 Answer

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first ya gotta figure out what clicks - is it the relay, or the starter ? In either event - you'll need a multi meter or voltmeter to trouble shoot it.... but since u just replaced the battery - start by checkin the battery connections especially at the starter. Torque em and rotate em to grind em in and make a good connection. If that s not it - you have a bad solenoid or starter motor or relay. oh - before you start replacing stuff - make sure ya gotta full charge from the battery

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1 Answer

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Electrical problems and **** in the gas tank can cause misfires. It sounds more electrical in your case. But draining and flushing the gas tank is a cheap fix. Could also be a coil or spark plug problem. Check for a faulty, fouled or cracked plug, check for a good spark, check the coil for carbon tracking. Check the plug wire connections too and the wires.

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3 Answers

Starter won't engage


better yet...............even if you have the minimun 12.5 volts on the battery, the amps may not be suffiicent to turn the starter and you will hear a clacking noice. the battery probably needs to be replaced.

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2 Answers

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What is it doing exactly, any clicking, buzzing, any noise at all, or nothing, no sounds at all? Especially in the starter area.

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I have a 2000 Softail "Fatboy". The problem is overheating/starting. On several occasions after riding in high heat on several trips say in the 75 to 400 mile range the bike will not restart...


This is going to be a problem with the starter. When a starter is getting a bit on the worn side, high temps will cause the electric motor not to engage creating the same clicking sound as if the battery was dead or had a bad contact.

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Harley Davidson 883 2004


I have a 1980's somthing 883 with a fucked up hand built wiring harness and for some strange reason when I hit the starter it just clicks. So I moved the relays and got shocked. Whats my problem???

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