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Sportster Motorcycle General Discussion and Problems For discussing problems about your Sportster motorcycle that don't fit anywhere else.

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  #1  
Old 14th May 2019
Mama Tried Mama Tried is offline
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Default Sportster ignition troubles

I hate to start another thread about starting issues but.. I cannot find what I'm looking for.

A friend brought her 03' 883 by the house yesterday it was missing bad and occasionally only running on the front cylinder. I checked the normal stuff (plugs, plug wires, coil, cleaned the carb) but nothing helped.. possible coming from the timing??

The other thing I noticed was when I turned the bike off using the handlebar switch it took it a few seconds to die? That sparked my curiosity enough to find that the bike will crank (but not start) by pushing the start switch even with the run switch off??? But wont crank with the key off.

Any input is appreciated.

Dane
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  #2  
Old 14th May 2019
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Power to the RUN/STOP Switch (RSS) comes into it on the GRAY wire (from the Ignition Fuse)...

The RSS (within the right switch housing) supplies power to the Start Switch when the RSS is in the RUN position...

I would disassemble the right switch housing & make the wiring there right - something is currently loose or shorting there & needs to be corrected...

Here's the Sportsterpedia section on testing the coil:
http://sportsterpedia.com/doku.php/t...-_specs_checks

But this also should be done:
When you're having issues with the electrical system, use this Sportsterpedia section about
checking the battery cables, voltages and grounds - DO THIS BEFORE ANYTHING ELSE:
http://sportsterpedia.com/doku.php/t...place_to_start

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  #3  
Old 14th May 2019
Mama Tried Mama Tried is offline
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Default thanks

That's great content.. I have already put a new coil on bike with no success.

As far as a crossed wire in the RSS I would have thought that if it allowed it to crank it would also fire. But it doesn't fire at all.. the motor will turn over but plugs never fire as long as the kill switch is in the off position.

Dane
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  #4  
Old 14th May 2019
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Do what XL2Relax said and check the key switch too. Try to by pass it with a wire. But one thing after another.
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Old 14th May 2019
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mama Tried View Post
As far as a crossed wire in the RSS I would have thought that if it allowed it to crank it would also fire. But it doesn't fire at all.. the motor will turn over but plugs never fire as long as the kill switch is in the off position.
There is a separate wire that goes out from the RSS to the Ignition Module circuits - The RSS powers this wire when the RSS is in the RUN mode - but since the connection to the Start Switch is within the same housing, shorting to the incoming hot wire - rather than relying on the switch being in the RUN mode - can occur that will allow the Start Switch to send power to the Starter Solenoid...

This may not be the only problem - but it should be fixed first to be sure it doesn't continue to introuduce issues into the more extensive troubleshooting...

Be sure to check the grounds - on the 1996, they are located on the rear upper motor mounts...

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  #6  
Old 14th May 2019
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I have a question; does the nose cone has rivets or screws?
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  #7  
Old 15th May 2019
Mama Tried Mama Tried is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Flame__ View Post
I have a question; does the nose cone has rivets or screws?

It has screws.
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Old 16th May 2019
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That means someone has been in there, changing things. I would strongly suggest you set your timing before you go any further. The symptoms you are describing are exactly like timing is too advanced. Whether or not this is the case, it needs to be the first thing checked off on your process of elimination before you go any further.
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