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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
So about a month ago I bought a 02 foreman 400. trx400fw (if relevant) didn’t have much experience with wheelers before all this, and am kinda stuck now. Previous owner 100% sunk it and he said it sat for about a year. Wheel bearings where shot. Back breaks were locked up. Solved those issues. Wasn’t getting spark. Battery is shot but electric start worked from a jump and so did lights. I’ve replaced the cdi box, the starter solenoid, rectifier, kill switch panel, ignition coil, and spark plug. Previous owner also said it smoked when it ran, I pulled the motor out, replaced the stator, and bought a 450 top end kit, cleaned the valves, new valve seals, etc etc. top end seems tip top, compression is great, current problem is when I try the electric start all I get is a click. Even on a jump. I thought maybe bad ground, all grounds were cleaned, still just click. I checked all the wiring since I remounted the motor and everything seems fine, really don’t know what to try next. I took the starter off and put the negative of the jumpers on the metal and positive to the positive of the starter and it spun like it works…. Please help I don’t know what to do lol
So in a recap the electric start worked before I pulled the motor off but didn’t get spark. Now for some reason the starter works when jumped off the bike but won’t do anything except click when on the bike….

side note, when on jumpers the battery was getting 13v, and the starter was getting 3v on the crank

update: new starter is in, I ran tests with the multimeter and at this point, I have a scary feeling that I might not have set the starter gears correctly when reinstalling the stator. But I’m honestly not sure…. Battery is still being jumped everytime, was getting 12 ish bolts to the battery, same current to the solenoid on the battery side, and I got 3.4v off the starter side of the solenoid on the crank. Switched back to original, 12 of the battery side, but this time 4ish volts off the starter side on the crank. What could be happening? I’ve done so much and am running out of ideas

Update: Ended up being the idler/starter gears. resolved that problem, now back to the initial no spark. almost everything has been replaced now, starter, battery, stator, cdi box, rectifier, starter solenoid, ignition coil, spark plug, and kill switch/light panel. The only other thing I can think of is the wiring harness, everyone keeps telling me to bite the bullet at this point and take it to a shop, but I believe I can figure it out, I'm just not that good at diagnosing, nor do I have any experience with fourwheelers.
 

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I'm thinking that now, with the new top end you have more compression than before...it could be that the starter won't handle it when under load. When you tested the starter off the bike, there's no resistance but it's a lot harder to turn over an engine with full compression. Sometimes, a battery also performs ok until it's under load - then it's nfg.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I'm thinking that now, with the new top end you have more compression than before...it could be that the starter won't handle it when under load. When you tested the starter off the bike, there's no resistance but it's a lot harder to turn over an engine with full compression. Sometimes, a battery also performs ok until it's under load - then it's nfg.
appreciate that, that’s kinda what I was thinking as well, the battery is 100% shot, but I had cables hooked up to my running jeep, so it was getting constant power. I know I’m gonna need a new battery but I want to hear it fire first…. Got an Amazon starter on the way. Should be here tomorrow, If it ends up not being starter I can return it. I was also thinking of throwing the stock solenoid back on it to just in case the cheap one I got is shot or Something.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I'm thinking that now, with the new top end you have more compression than before...it could be that the starter won't handle it when under load. When you tested the starter off the bike, there's no resistance but it's a lot harder to turn over an engine with full compression. Sometimes, a battery also performs ok until it's under load - then it's nfg.
And you are 100 % correct about the compression, I can barely pull the cord without it getting yanked out of my hand
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I'm thinking that now, with the new top end you have more compression than before...it could be that the starter won't handle it when under load. When you tested the starter off the bike, there's no resistance but it's a lot harder to turn over an engine with full compression. Sometimes, a battery also performs ok until it's under load - then it's nfg.
Starter has been replaced. Still “click” the clicking is coming from the solenoid. I didn’t have to much time to mess with it earlier as I had to work, gonna play with it when I get off. My next thing I can think to try is put the original solenoid back on as the electric start worked before. And if that doesn’t work I’m doing to try jumping the solenoid with a screwdriver. Any other ideas?
 

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Did you replace that original battery that was shot? If you are leaving a bad battery connected while jumping it from a good source of power this may cause problems. When putting power straight to the starter, if it turns over ok then it's likely the issue is electrical. If it doesn't turn over normally, then the problem is mechanical (internal - possibly starter gears are messed up).
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Did you replace that original battery that was shot? If you are leaving a bad battery connected while jumping it from a good source of power this may cause problems. When putting power straight to the starter, if it turns over ok then it's likely the issue is electrical. If it doesn't turn over normally, then the problem is mechanical (internal - possibly starter gears are messed up).
so it ended up being the starter/idler gears. I had a washer on the wrong side... the starter works now and motor has good compression but now back to the original problem of no spark. At this point the only other thing I can think of it the wiring harness :( I just bought a new battery today, therefore all the electrical has been replaced.
 
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