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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey everyone,

I'm new to the motorcycle world and I bought a 1979 cx500 a few years ago now as a way of learning how to ride, along with learning how to repair and do all the maintenance myself. With that said I have questions when stuff breaks down. My issue right now is my bike won't start. I turn the key and all the lights come on but it won't even try to turn over. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks.
 

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Does it click when you try to start it? Even though the lights come on, the battery could still not be charged enough to start it. Have you checked voltage? Have you tried jumping the starter?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
No there's no clicking. Battery should be good but I'll be checking it. When it first did it I rode from home to my ball game. Fired up no problem when I left the house then played my game and went to head home and nothing. Only lights come on and there's no sound.
 

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I would check battery first and if it’s good I would jump the starter at the solenoid to make sure it’s not the starter itself.
 

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Where in Canada are you located ?
There may be members close to you who could assist
 
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Ok so battery was good so I jumped the solenoid. Bike started firing so that should mean I just have a solenoid issue right? Or am I looking at something different? If so does anyone know of a good site that ships in Canada to buy parts from for older bikes?
 

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1983 cx650c
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I got solenoid on ebay, cheap and has modern fuse not little metal strip type. Chinese but 3yrs with no problem, kind of universal Honda item it seems. I just searched ebay on my bike, and results said it fit many Hondas.
 

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Okay, you know your starter isn't the issue. It can still be a number of things. Hopefully Sidecarbob chimes in as he's very good with electrical things. I don't want to give you bad advice or have you doing something that's a waste of your time. It could be your starter switch on the handle bars is dirty and that can be cleaned with contact cleaner. It could be a problem with your neutral safety switch. It could be the solenoid. I wouldn't buy anything until you know what part is defective.
 

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1983 cx650c
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Volcano said he jumped solenoid and it cranks, ,,,I'm thinkin replacement will fix. Of course could be button , notorious place for grime to foul contacts,,, i think neutral switch is ok if it cranks? to test is best, new when necessary ?
 

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The neutral switch is bypassed when you jump the solenoid so no it doesn't mean it's okay if it cranks. That said, it seems rare that the neutral switch is the problem.
 

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Good info, I only suspect solenoid due to several failures on bikes with proximity to battery, I've also had corrosion be the cause, on big terminals as well as small bullets on button wires. Cleaning corrosion has been an ongoing problem with bike wiring, green is not good in this case ?
 

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It could also be a dirty ignition switch too. Like I said before, don't buy anything until someone chimes in with some tests for you to perform. Hopefully you have a multi-meter.
 

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Correct again! A multimeter is the key to success in diagnostic analysis of electrical systems. The ignition switch test is not hard, it's looking at wire colors in gang plug and checking for continuity between them in the various switch positions . One must have wiring diagrams to do it properly of course.
 

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I've been looking at diagram I have, and to me it's y/r and black at starter button, and red and black at ignition switch. I would keep testing at solenoid first to see if power from button gets to there, then ignition switch if not. Clutch and neutral switches are involved also in the circuit. It probably takes a helper to push n probe, never hurts to have two to figure things out anyway,, happy hunting!
 

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'84 CX650E that is evolving into a GL500
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I was taught to start with the easy stuff and the easiest thing to do is squeeze the clutch lever while you try starting it. It should start either in neutral or with the clutch disengaged (or both) so if something is amiss with the neutral switch or its wire it may start with the clutch disengaged.

If that doesn't help get out your ohm meter and check for voltage between the yellow/red and green/red wires at the solenoid while you press the Start button.
If you find voltage there the solenoid is probably the problem. If not let us know and I'll tell you what to look at next.

BTW: Please add your location to your profile (as has been mentioned there may be a member nearby that can help) and add your bike's model and model year to your signature so you don't have to remember to tell us every time and we don't have to ask when you forget.
Besides, I want to know where in Canada people can ride 2 wheeled motorcycles to Baseball games in March...
 

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Red Green at solenoid! I luv that show,,? Canadian, ,,I was lookin at wires on button in my book, simple is certainly the place to start testing,, wiring gets to looking like colored spaghetti to me in a hurry,,,?
 

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'84 CX650E that is evolving into a GL500
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I studied electronics in school (almost half a century ago) and have self studied automotive electric principles and bike wiring in recent decades. In an overwhelming percentage of cases problems end up being things that are fairly easy to figure out if you take your time and work at it methodically.

BTW: The wire that connects to the solenoid should be green/red (green with red stripe), not red/green (red with green stripe).

Re Red Green: Long before Possum Lodge, Steve Smith started doing that character in a series of sketches in the Smith & Smith show (the other Smith was his wife Morag). It was a spoof of Red FIsher's long running Canadian outdoors show where Red & guests talked about hunting, fishing &c in "Scuttlebutt Lodge". Smith's version was set in Scuttlebum Lodge until it was spun off into its own show (which coincided with Morag's retirement from TV).
I remember reading an interview with him shortly after PBS picked up The Red Green Show where he said he couldn't believe Americans thought it was educational ?
 

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Fun! I knew you would spot the red/green wiring thing, and am properly advised it is green/red, thanx and still enjoying the re runs when I catch them,,, keep your stick on the ice?
 

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Dumb question ... did you have the kill switch on? The the bike actually start when you jumped the solenoid or just turn over?
 
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