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Discussion Starter #1
Sorry in advance for this long post but I want to give as much info as possible. I have already posted part of this a few weeks ago but I’m still having a problem.

My friend has an '02 she bought used a few years ago. It started running a little rough a couple weeks ago. Nothing real definite just not quite as smooth as normal. After about a 100 mile ride with several stops and no problem she returned home and parked outside. She said the trike smelled a little hot but the temp gauge was normal and she felt the smell was because it was raining on the hot bike. She tried to crank the trike and all it would do it turn over but no luck.

I went to her house and put a volt meter on it. She isn't sure if it's the original battery but she has had the bike for nearly 4 years and hasn't replaced it. The meter read 12.5 volts instead of the 13v per the service manual. When I hit the starter the voltage dropped to 11.3, well within the range above 9.8v required to start. I then disconnected the battery and put a load tester on the battery and it indicated the battery is "weak". I then re-installed the battery and hooked jumper cables to it and attempted to start the bike by jumping it. Again, a nice fast spin but not even an attempt to start.

I flipped the 'kill switch" several times just to make sure it wasn't that. I cranked and cranked because before I went to her house I just KNEW it was a weak battery.

Since then she has carried it to the local Honda dealership. So far they have installed a new battery, then a pulse generator, then an ECM. After installing the new ECM the bike would crank but only run for 45 seconds and then die. If you wait 15 or 20 minutes it will crank again and run 8 to 20 seconds and then die again. Now they’ve replaced the start button switch and the handle bar switch, according to her. The bike still won’t run.

They have now told her they think she needs to install a new fairing wiring harness and a thermo switch ($350 more). So far she is in for over $1200 and the trike still isn’t running and they want her to spend another $350 with no promise that it will fix the problem.

Obviously she can’t keep buying parts for these jackasses to install until they finally stumble across the problem but they are stumped and so am I. Does anyone have a suggestion that would be helpful?

And please, if all you can reply with is something YOU think will be funny or cute, save it for a different post. I’m the funniest guy I know so I seldom read anything as funny as what I can think of myself.
 

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Any codes seen thus far? When it does not start, and the kick stand down (or at least the kick stand switch in the down position - I know it is a trike) try cranking it for 10 sec to see if it throws a code.
 

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The shop is certainly doing no more than guessing on her buck. I would avoid them. Just a couple of things to confirm. Is she getting spark?? Pull a plug and test for spark. Can you hear the fuel pump?? Can you smell gas when you crank it up?? With a 4 year old battery, the money on a new one isn't wasted, but if it's cranking over strong you should check for spark and fuel.

Bottom line with that shop, they have taken her money playing a guessing game and failed. New ECM at what cost??...have them put the old one in and refunded her money...that's pitiful!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the help. There is a spark and gas because it will now start and run for a minute before it dies.

The trike is in the shop so I don't know if they checked it for codes but surely they did. I will try to find out.
 

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GL1800 Doctor
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Sounds like they didn't know how to troubleshoot the original issue and started throwing parts at it. My guess is that in the process of throwing these un-needed parts at it they have man handled the wiring harness and connectors and created a totally new problem. This is the typical dealer butthead mechanic scenario. She needs to have them put all of her original parts back on it, refund the parts money, and take it somewhere else that has a mechanic that can find his a_s! I hate it that she is having so much trouble, but those guys are wasting her money and probably causing issues with it that they may never fix.
 

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Parts changers and mechanics are two different things.

My next step would be to find out if the spark or lack of fuel is shutting things down. Easily done with either an induction timing light or a fuel pressure gauge installed inline(either of which a remedial mechanic would have already done.) Working backward from that, My current guess would be a fuel pump or fuel pressure regulator.

Idiots! They are all around us. Your friend will join their ranks if she gives this shop one more dollar without results. All ineffective parts are the property of the shop and she should refuse to pay for anything that did not solve the presenting issue.
 

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I'd have them check the fuel pump. It shouldn't be too difficult for a dealer???? Then tell them to stop guessing and call in an expert.
 

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If they pull a fuel pump test and find that it is indeed the fuel pump, DON'T LET THEM SELL YOU A HONDA MOTORCYCLE PUMP! You will pay dearly for it. You can substitute one for a Honda Accord. It is the same identical pump at a much lower price The one for a 98 Accord made by BOSH, 90 bucks at a parts house.
 

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I would bet it is in the fuel system. Sounds like the bike get the hoses full and as soon as it runs out the engine quits. It then take a few minutes for fuel to fill the hoses again. Fuel pressure test should be interesting :popcorn:
 

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GL1800 Doctor
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Trekbiker61, sorry my response was of little help for your friend. Only thing I would like to add, there's no way the fairing sub harness will cause the bike to run a few minutes and then die, so they are trying to waste more of her money by even suggesting the problem is in there. Goodluck to you and your friend with this.
 
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