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Discussion Starter #1
Pulled Goldwing out of the garage this morning (2014 comfort model with Motor Trike Conversion). Checked the CB with the other rider going with me and dash display screen went blank. Other rider said my lights were dim when I pulled out of the garage. Turned off the Trike and when I tried to restart it was dead. Tried jumping but couldn't get anything. Put on Trickler Charger and it said bad battery. Took battery to auto parts store. They checked it and said battery was OK, but bought a new one anyway. Hooked up positive terminal then when I touched the negative cable to the battery it sparked and sounded like the starter engaged even though key was off. Tried again with kill switch in the Kill position and same thing happened. Motorcycle trip turned into a car trip. Any ideas of what is wrong?
 

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GL1800 Doctor
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Pulled Goldwing out of the garage this morning (2014 comfort model with Motor Trike Conversion). Checked the CB with the other rider going with me and dash display screen went blank. Other rider said my lights were dim when I pulled out of the garage. Turned off the Trike and when I tried to restart it was dead. Tried jumping but couldn't get anything. Put on Trickler Charger and it said bad battery. Took battery to auto parts store. They checked it and said battery was OK, but bought a new one anyway. Hooked up positive terminal then when I touched the negative cable to the battery it sparked and sounded like the starter engaged even though key was off. Tried again with kill switch in the Kill position and same thing happened. Motorcycle trip turned into a car trip. Any ideas of what is wrong?
Yep, your “A” starter relay has welded contacts and needs to be replaced. This is much harder on a trike because the starter relays are to the rear of the battery, usually hidden by the left saddlebag. Some conversions have an access panel in the rear fender to reach them and some do not. You should replace both, the A and B relays once you get to them due to equal age and you don’t want to have to do this job twice. :frown2:
 

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Discussion Starter #5
So if I have an extended warranty how will it being a Trike affect it? Conversion has nothing to do with the issue but will make fixing it harder
 

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GL1800 Doctor
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So if I have an extended warranty how will it being a Trike affect it? Conversion has nothing to do with the issue but will make fixing it harder
Good question. The dealer may charge you a little for the extra time it will take to replace the relays. Really depends on the dealer.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
MOTORtrike is here st Wingding and they showed me how you can get to they relays by just taking the left tire off. Are they easy to replace and how expensive are they? Wondering if easier to do myself rather than having towed to dealer
 

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GL1800 Doctor
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MOTORtrike is here st Wingding and they showed me how you can get to they relays by just taking the left tire off. Are they easy to replace and how expensive are they? Wondering if easier to do myself rather than having towed to dealer
There’s four cable nuts that hold the cables on their studs that you have to remove, then they each are held to the bike by a rubber mount that you slide them out of. Each one has a small two pin plug that you unplug from the bike harness, color coded to be dummy proof.

Part numbers for your 14 are:
35850-MCA-A61
35860-MCA-A61

$85 for the pair at Partzilla.com

I’ve never changed them on a trike, so I can’t say if it’s easy or hard, it’s pretty easy without the trike conversion.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for your help tech dude. Now I can enjoy the rest of my vacation without worrying about what's awaiting me at home
 

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So if I have an extended warranty how will it being a Trike affect it? Conversion has nothing to do with the issue but will make fixing it harder
First off, I doubt Honda will replace the relays as a set. Probably only 1 will test bad. As for additional labor, usually they'll charge for the add'l time required because you have a trike. An hours worth of money would be a lot, something like a half hour would be more fair. Because it is a trike, some might tell you that they don't work on them.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Resolution - Got the Trike to Honda of Russellville, (however the Rescue Plus towing took forever, first dispatched truck broke down, so they had to go "out of network" to get a truck and that ended up taking till the next day). Glad I wasn't on the side of the road waiting for them. It was the starter relay and it was covered under extended warranty, nothing even extra because it was a Trike. Asked about paying extra to have the other one replaced and they said it would be a waste of money, they are either good or not good.
 

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... It was the starter relay... Asked about paying extra to have the other one replaced and they said it would be a waste of money, they are either good or not good.

Ya but both the "A" and "B" relays get Exactly the same amount of wear on them... so, when one goes, then the next will soon follow.


I'd replace the other one, and keep the current one as a spare.
 

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GL1800 Doctor
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Ya but both the "A" and "B" relays get Exactly the same amount of wear on them... so, when one goes, then the next will soon follow.


I'd replace the other one, and keep the current one as a spare.
Glad they got it going, but I agree, the other one should be changed soon. The reasoning is high current relays arc/spark every time you start the engine, the older they get racking up more and more start cycles increases the possibility that it will weld the contacts. Once this happens you get more trouble. If the A relay welds, then the starter can get burned up. If the B relay welds, your reverse will fail to work. Since this time around it was the A relay, the next time it will likely be the B relay and you won’t be able to backup that trike. Of course that will be at the worst possible time, thanks to Murphy.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
are the relays side by side or one in front of the other? Which one is for the starter and which is for reverse? Can you look at them and tell if it's bad (like a fuse?)
 

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GL1800 Doctor
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are the relays side by side or one in front of the other? Which one is for the starter and which is for reverse? Can you look at them and tell if it's bad (like a fuse?)
Not really. They are both to the rear of the battery, the A is hanging in its mount in front of the B. Both are used for starting and reverse. The starter button switch energizes the A relay and it sends power to the B relay to energize it and send it on to the starter.

 

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Discussion Starter #16
Dead again

AAAARG...it did it again. Dead battery and when I try to jump it. The starter engages. Is this the same relay or the other? (Does the other have the exact same symptoms or does it just control the reverse?)
 

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Either you keep Murphy in your trunk, or it may be that the shop actually replaced the wrong relay. If it had "unstuck" itself by the time they replaced it, they might not know which one is at fault, and replace the wrong one. Then, the original bad relay burned shut again. That's my guess. Either way, sounds like a trip to the shop again for the other relay, unless the new relay failed. Not likely.
 

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Not really. They are both to the rear of the battery, the A is hanging in its mount in front of the B. Both are used for starting and reverse. The starter button switch energizes the A relay and it sends power to the B relay to energize it and send it on to the starter.


I know the op post pertains to a GL1800. However, on a GL1500 the starter relay B is not used for reverse. Maybe the GL1800 is different, I don't have a wiring schematic for the GL1800.

I have been riding GL1500's since 1993 and never known of a relay B failure. Have know of several relay A failures. Known of relay A failures, replaced them, and many many thousands of miles later (even 100k miles) the relay B is still working good. If it was my bike, I would not replace the relay B (but that's just me) based on experience........!!
 

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This might not go down well but it saved me on an extended trip. I had the relay A fail fairly early on in my bike's life and I sorted that but at the time it occurred to me it could be a real bummer away from home if it happened again. While I was in there I laid in a chunky piece of cable from the B relay/starter connection and just hung the other end, insulated of course, adjacent to the battery. The cable only comes live when the starter is used so little risk. Anyway, several years later that cable saved the day, actually saved the trip, I just stripped a wee bit of insulation back and touched it to the battery positive and the bike started up instantly.

To save the trip I got piece of cable from a hardware store and made up a short cable from battery positive and hung both cables out of the hole in the side panel and just touched them together to start the bike. Well that original cable is still there for the next time.

You MUST be sure the bike is not in gear before you start it this way!

Anyway, get your trike back to the garage and have them check it over and replace the second relay. You may want to consider the short jumper cable....
 

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GL1800 Doctor
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I know the op post pertains to a GL1800. However, on a GL1500 the starter relay B is not used for reverse. Maybe the GL1800 is different, I don't have a wiring schematic for the GL1800.

I have been riding GL1500's since 1993 and never known of a relay B failure. Have know of several relay A failures. Known of relay A failures, replaced them, and many many thousands of miles later (even 100k miles) the relay B is still working good. If it was my bike, I would not replace the relay B (but that's just me) based on experience........!!
Both relays are used for starting and reverse on the 01-17 1800s. If the B relay welds it’s contacts, you will only know it by reverse not working correctly. We need more details to know if this is the exact same situation.
 
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