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Gray Beard
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Just thought i would add my contribution to the members as many have done for me.
I do this for a living now days and the starter on our bike is very reliable and can give years or service save for one component the contacts. Mind you a new starter is between $195 and $360 so with a little work and about $11.00 you can get more life out of the unit you have.

1. disconnect negative terminal on the battery.

2. remove battery cable at the starter and remove starter switch wire.

3. remove the starter.

4. once on the bench




5. remove the 3 scews covering the plunger and contacts



6. remove the plunger



at this point you'll know right away if the contacts are worn out as seen in the picture this will give you a click no crank issue.

7. next remove the nut and jumper wire from solenoid to motor case seen in pic 1

8. then remove the nuts holding the contact studs (one side at a time is best so as not to get studs or contacts mixed up)



note: the difference between worn and new

then pry off the contacts from the studs and replace new
 

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Gray Beard
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Discussion Starter #2


i use a 7/16 deep socket and small hammer to seat the new contact on the stud.

8. repeat step 7 on the other side with the finish as such



9. clean the plunger on a wire wheel on the bench grinder or emery cloth





10. replace plunger and spring assembly into the solenoid housing and replace cover and screws.

while you have it out you can also inspect the brushes and armature

emery cloth works well on the armature





the easiest way to inspect is just remove the back cover on the motor portion of the starter 2 small screws and 2 long then holding the winding case tap the rear cover off with a small hammer the further in the brush spring is the more worn the brush is.

I can post more pics if necessary.
 

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Starter

Great article. One note, that's the commutator you clean,not the armature. And when you clean it take emery cloth and go in same direction that it turns, not up and down. One question, where did you get contact parts from?
 

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Gray Beard
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Discussion Starter #4
I sale them all day long but I'm not soliciting as per the rules of the forum.
You can get them from a local starter or alternator rebuilder such as myself or a search on the Internet for Nippon denso contacts


Sent from Motorcycle.com App
 

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Great write up, this should be a "sticky". If my starter ever goes south, I'll be looking for this thread.

Sent from my SPH-L710
 

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If starter ever goes, it'll will go to the east to Lundy1, Are there core charges? Do you swapmeet type ganantee? HD starters do seem to last longer than some common auto/truck ones. 90k on one 63 on other never problem. Can you DISPELL any of the (as I do ) jumping off the starter hot mistruth??
 

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Good job on this write up with pictures.

Just a note....... when you remove the plunger, I believe there is a ball bearing that sits in the bottom of the hole that the plunger comes out of. You can see the little shiny ball bearing in Picture 6, sitting in the bottom. If you turn the starter over with the plunger removed, that bearing can (will) fall out so be careful when you are vacuuming or shaking the dust and stuff with the plunger removed. Don't lose the bearing.

Do you recommend replacing the plunger while you are replacing the contacts?
 

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One additional suggestion, for those who are doing this.

While you have it apart, replace the starter clutch. This is another of those parts on the bike that will fail! Not if, but when. Especially if you have added any compression to your motor, it will go. Another weak part, but this one is not made by HD, rather by Toyota (Nippon Denso), who makes the starters.

Here is a link to a thread on HD Forums with a How-To
 

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Gray Beard
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Discussion Starter #11
True on all points I should be a little more detailed in future right ups, you are correct ONG the clutch will wear out faster with high compression but what we get here is 85% contact failure and clutches fail do to oops I hit the start button while it was running , or because the contacts are worn you don't get proper pinion drive engagement , or of course weak battery can cause this as well


Sent from Motorcycle.com App
 

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Nice thread. Good advice.
 

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Very insightful! I can save us from steep service fees. However, some people are not confident in rebuilding the starter on their own with the fear that something might become problematic. We really have to follow the steps carefully and make sure secure the parts after replacement.
 

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Just fyi folks, the kit in the Amazon link above will not fit a 2011 RG; the contacts are not oriented as needed by this year starter. The plunger is fine tho. I am in the process of searching for the correct contacts for the 2011 and will post a link ifn I can find one.


Here we go: https://www.ebay.com/itm/Solenoid-Repair-Kit-for-Harley-Davidson-by-V-Twin/371855280551?_trkparms=aid=111001&algo=REC.SEED&ao=1&asc=20160908105057&meid=7022765c81f14ef0844a5985de612dc6&pid=100675&rk=1&rkt=15&sd=371855280551&itm=371855280551&_trksid=p2481888.c100675.m4236&_trkparms=pageci:465b5605-8b86-11e9-af7d-74dbd1803bb8|parentrq:41a4bb2616b0a4b77cbfebfdffecbb02|iid:1
 
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