I've about had it with my Foreman 450 - Honda Foreman Forums : Rubicon, Rincon, Rancher and Recon Forum
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Old 01-20-2010, 11:53 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Ok, I've had this problem with this bike not starting about a year ago but then it was kind of a once and awhile thing and then it was fine all summer and fall. And now it continually does it.

When I turn on the key and press the ignition button all I get is a loud click under the seat from the solenoid. Last year I took it to the dealer who couldn't get it to repeat the problem but replaced the brushes in the starter (it did it again about a week later so that wasn't it). I took it back and they supposedly found a dirty connector and sent it home (it did it once or twice soon after that and then was fine).

Come this winter, I go to start it one morning and get nothing but the loud click so I pull start it and do what I need to do and come back in (figured the battery was cold and didn't have the juice to start since it was about 20* in the shop). Got back in and shut it off then immediately tried to start it again, and again I got the same loud click. So the next time I was in town I bought a brand new fully charged battery for it and brought it home and put it in, tried to start it and got the same thing again. So I figured I'd get the tester out and see if there was current coming from the solenoid to the starter. Got nothing from the solenoid (battery was reading 12V) so I jumped it across and got a the starter to make a noise so I figured it was the solenoid. I just replaced that today and when to start it and still got only the loud click. I did some reading on here and cleaned off the following: both ends of starter cable (solenoid and starter), negative battery cable at the battery, positive battery cable at the battery, frame ground connection (couldn't get to bolt to remove engine ground and clean), cleaned off all the fuses, looked at the two connectors that run to the solenoid and they looked to be fairly clean but couldn't get anything in there to clean them. Did get the starter to crank slowly for a second but then it ran out and I just got the click.

So where do I go from here? I've been pull starting this thing for probably 3 weeks or more now and put over $500 into trying to fix this problem (between last year and this year) and there is no end in sight. Is there some little thing I'm missing here or any ideas on how to fix this?

PLEASE HELP ME!!!
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Old 01-21-2010, 12:19 AM   #2 (permalink)
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OK here goes. Im not too familiar with your machine or how its set-up but it sounds like you're having the same problem with yours as I do with mine. It did it from day 1 on a brand new machine. It hasnt done it in about a 8 monthes and it happened about 3 weeks ago. Today I was in the middle of a flooded crick bed gettin killed my mud and it stalls out. I hit the starter "click" turned the key off and on "click" WTF!!

So while I had water up to my knees I thought hmm Im in gear Ill put her in neutral "click". So im sitting there and remembered the other day I was sitting in my shed and it did it.....but I was inbetween gears I guess. When going from neutral to reverse it seems that I know im in reverse, the dash display reads nothing and as soon as I touch the gas *poof* it finds its way to reverse.

So while stuck and not starting today I thought maybe its doing that stupid thing these machines do and isnt realizing its A. In gear with the brake on or B. in neutral to start. I put in in neutral hit the button "click" OK, so I wiggled my "gear shift" I guess you would call it and *boom* she fired up.

It did it again and after a almost 2yrs I finally figured out the problem and how to correct it. So hopefully this is the case with your machine too, wiggle or play with your gear select and that should fix it. If we are having the same problem, which sounds like it is. Hope that helps!!!!!
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Old 01-21-2010, 10:44 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Sounds to me that the starter itself needs to be replaced. I have a 02 es and Ive never had that issue, but it looks like you have replaced everthing else.
Hope that helps. Let us know what you have found.
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Old 01-21-2010, 11:23 AM   #4 (permalink)
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QUOTE
Quote:
Did get the starter to crank slowly for a second but then it ran out and I just got the click.
This makes me think one of 2 things. You received a faulty battery or something is not correct in the starter. The good thing is the problem is continuous and not intermediate. Get your meter back out and recheck the voltage at the starter with the button pushed. Also get a reading at the battery with and without the button pushed. If your getting power to the starter then it could be that a brush stuck or it has a bad bearing making it jamb and not work.

If your not getting power then it might be a faulty solenoid, jump the terminals again and see if the starter will work.
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Old 01-21-2010, 04:38 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Ok, got the voltmeter out again and I think I've finally found the problem. Checked the voltage at the battery and it's 12 volts with and w/o button pushed. Checked at the starter and I'm getting 12 volts to the starter by grounding on the negative battery terminal.

I'm assuming this means that I've got to rebuild the starter. What parts do I need to order and replace to get this fixed (it's a Mitsuba starter)? Don't want to miss an O-ring I need to replace or something.

thanks
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Old 01-21-2010, 05:38 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Most likely just brushes, it possible it just needs cleaned though if it hasn't been used much since the new brushes was installed. If the terminal brush stuck and is not making contact with the armature it will cause this problem. Here's a break down of the starter, they are not a bad job just set the washers in order so they get back in the correct place.

http://partsfinder.onlinemicrofiche.com/ho...;A=181&B=11
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Old 01-21-2010, 06:03 PM   #7 (permalink)
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It's used at least twice a day everyday but I'll tear into it tomorrow and see if just a cleaning helps. So if I need brushes I'd need numbers 2, two 3s, and 5 (ref numbers from the picture)?

again, thanks for the help.
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Old 01-21-2010, 06:35 PM   #8 (permalink)
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#5 and #2, #5 will come with the springs (3).
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Old 01-22-2010, 02:43 AM   #9 (permalink)
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QUOTE (toodeep @ Jan 21 2010, 07:35 PM)
Quote:
#5 and #2, #5 will come with the springs (3).
Sounds to me like the armature needs to be turned down on a lathe.
At least clean out the grooves between the copper bars, if they get plugged with copper shavings they will make contact between the bars and short out the starter.
This could be why your getting the clicking sound, the starter is being energized, but the current is trying to go in too many places, putting the starter out of time.
If there is a deep groove in the path where the brushes travel on the armature the lathe may take away too much material to clean it up, you may need an armature as well,
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Old 01-23-2010, 10:05 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I've been through it on both my 300FW, and my 450 Foreman. The brush kit will usually give you about another year if you're lucky, even if you do a good job of cleaning up the armature on a lathe. You can buy a brand new aftermarket starter on ebay for under $70, and OEM for under $100. I've had good luck with the aftermarket starters. I'll never waste my time with another brush kit.

OEM starter

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