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Discussion Starter #1
Okay, this happened a few years ago. Bike has sat untouched since then. 1999 CBR1100XX, 26,000 miles, was driven daily with no problems. No oil leaks, no abnormal engine noise, smooth as silk as always, no problems what so ever.

Rode it to and from work the previous day, went out the following morning and I went to start it...

It turned over normal for a few seconds, then it sounded like something broke in the engine.... Like if a flywheel was spinning and you shoved a metal rod into it..... I released the starter button and said “Crap, that ain’t good” :confused:.. and got in the car and went to work.

I was then lazy and let it sit for too long.... Got a 2020 Ninja 1000SX in the meantime but now I really want the Blackbird running again.

I have thought, maybe Starter Clutch failed...... Failure method I had (listed here) is not normal for starter clutch failure, but anyhow I pulled the Alternator cover off. All in there looks good, no visible damage. With the starter gear removed the gear behind the flywheel turns freely clockwise and doesn’t budge counter clockwise (the way it should). No play in the rotation of the gear, feels normal. Doesn’t sound like starter clutch is bad.... would you agree?

With a wrench on the flywheel bolt I can rotate the engine, so that makes me think nothing in the engine like the crank shaft, a piston, a valve head snapped and jammed in the engine.... Whew :sneaky: Would you agree?

Any ideas what to do next?

Thanks in advance for your thoughts.
 

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It does sound like your rotating assembly is good. I would pull the plugs and turn it over again at least 4 full revolutions. That should tell you if any cylinders have an issue. If that all works then I'd use the starter again. Spin it over again. If that's good then do a compression test see if there isn't anything hiding. If that all checks then leave the plugs out and pulse the starter in 5 to 10 second bursts to make sure you oil pressure light goes out. If it does then check the oil for the smell of fuel. If it's clear then put the plugs back in and see if she fires up.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the ideas beestoys. When I took off the alternator cover I drained the oil and of course ruined the cover gasket. I have two replacement gaskets so at what point would you recommend I replace the oil and gasket cover? Do you think I should pull the flywheel and check the sprag bearing first? I don’t have a flywheel holder or puller so would have to get them, but it seems like the bearing / starter clutch system is good, so don’t really want to invest in pointless tools. Would you agree in not pulling the flywheel or should I do it while I am there?

I checked the oil I drained for the smell of fuel and it does not have any fuel smell to it

Do you have any life experiences that my initial sound of “ something breaking” would remind you of? It was a horrible sound, I was sure something in the engine snapped so I was really surprised when it rotated easily with no jamming or noise. But I also can’t imagine any portion of a previously perfect running engine “snapping” under the load of the starter motor.
 

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I agree with not tearing it down any farther. You may have just experienced a one time anomaly. Run through the above and if you can't replicate the problem then you can't fix what isn't broken.
The only life experience I could equate to what you describe in the realm of starting systems would be chipped or missing teeth on the starter or ring gear. So go through the above steps. Do more than 4 turns to make sure you've covered everything. Just build on each step
If it all looks good then fire it up and see.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Cool, sounds like I got a plan to follow. I will post the results for FYI and if somebody else comes here with the same issue.

Thanks for the help, it is great to have a bouncing board for thoughts and questions. :)
 

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Your very welcome and good luck
 

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What comes to mind is that the starter didn't engage the ring gear on the flywheel. How did the gear teeth look on the flywheel ring gear? Any shiny spots on the tips or on the side?
I wonder what the starter throw out gear (?) Looks like. Worn or chipped?
That's what comes to mind. Ever try to start an engine when it's already running? Bad sound! Did it sound anything like that but lower pitched and slower as the engine wasn't turning but the starter was until it wound down. Did you have a weak battery so the bendix might not have engaged the starter all the way?

Just my thoughts.

Good luck!

Sent from my SM-N960U using Tapatalk
 
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Worst sound I had on startup was a nasty clunk/knock sound. I'd had the bird on an angle to do some fixing and think maybe a bit of fuel starvation in one of the carbs meant a pot didn't fire. Speculating though, as it sorted itself out.

Good luck sir! Keep us informed.
 

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I'll give you $500 for it.

I'm with these guys. Stop tearing it down. Get the plugs out an turn it around by hand a lot. Row through the gears while you're turning it over. And if it seems okay, give it a go. I have no idea what your noise was like and you can't reproduce it. Maybe your FPR was starting to go and you had a little gas in a cylinder that fired on the open stroke. If the bike shuts off by stalling instead of killing the ignition, there can be a little gas in the cylinders that pops or otherwise on startup.

Right now, you don't have much data. Start methodically.
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
XXGUY, all the gears look to be in great shape, nothing cracked, no chips, look darn good to me. I will try to attach pics here if I can. The noise I heard was not like starting a running engine, it was literally like a piston rod snapped. It was painful to hear. I think that is the main reason I didn’t look back at it for years....o_O

Also the battery was less than 6 months old and I was running the bike regularly with no issues. Drove it 70 miles just the day before. The bendix gear on the starter motor shaft looks un-damaged to me.
E6AA7948-FDB3-4FAA-9D96-FBA971F63053.jpeg B83AB6A5-234F-455C-8A66-92C89AAF6233.jpeg 32DBD22A-3AF0-4859-BCFD-364A6082F224.jpeg

Duffloop, yeah the sound you describe sounds similar to mine, definitely a knock / clunk and definitely hard. But mine is a 1999 so it is fuel injected, but maybe that is why XXGUY was asking about fuel smell in the oil and iXXion comments, a puddle of gas somewhere in the engine that ignited..... 🔥 abnormally. My curiosity it peaked now.

iXXion by FPR I assume that is Fuel Pressure Regulator? I looked in the Honda service manual and see no listing in the TOC for fuel pressure regulator, is that only on carb‘ed bikes?

fizzy, the bike was driven regularly before this occurence, actually just 12 hrs earlier. I am planning on checking / replacing the CCT due to it known failures around 25k to 30k, but I don’t think a loose cam chain would make the noise I heard... But who knows.....
 

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That all looks right as rain
Do as Ixx stated if nothing hangs put it back together and light it off.
 

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Well, you're talking about a big noise. I still stand by my suggestion BUT.

Given your conviction, I'd check to see if pistons are coming up and down as they should. Put a pipe cleaner down the spark plug hole and hold it with one hand while you slowly turn the engine over. You can tell if the stroke is appropriate or if there is play at top or bottom. Then I'd do a compression test, or a leak down test if you have the equipment, to check and see if a valve is bent.

Fuel pressure regulator can go bad on the FI bikes and dump gas into a cylinder. Then there's hydrolock and a bent rod if you're not a lucky chap. FPR is the brassy shiny thing on the R side of the fuel rail. I quick check is to pull the vacuum line and check it for fresh gas, but that's not something that will work in your case as it's been years since run. Where are you in the US of A?
 

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Fuel pressure regulator can go bad on the FI bikes and dump gas into a cylinder. Then there's hydrolock and a bent rod if you're not a lucky chap. FPR is the brassy shiny thing on the R side of the fuel rail. I quick check is to pull the vacuum line and check it for fresh gas, but that's not something that will work in your case as it's been years since run. Where are you in the US of A?
Good point, lets hope dug is lucky. Can still test FPR; turn on ignition only, fuel will flow for 3 seconds. Pull vacuum line and check for raw fuel. Maybe turn ignition on and off a few times to be sure.

Edit, I think that would work even though there is no vacuum pull, only atmosphere.
 

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Well, you're talking about a big noise. I still stand by my suggestion BUT.

Fuel pressure regulator can go bad on the FI bikes and dump gas into a cylinder. Then there's hydrolock and a bent rod if you're not a lucky chap. Where are you in the US of A?
Agree with the above scenario. If your lucky it may have happened on the exhaust stroke. Which would account for nothing being found visually. A compression check would be the easiest thing to do first. A low cylinder pressure could equate to a tweaked rod. The pipe cleaner would be a good indicator too especially if one of the cylinders isn't moving as much distance on the pipe cleaner at TDC.
 

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Discussion Starter #16 (Edited)
Yeah, I found the pressure regulator in the service manual.... Table of Contents is kind of lacking in the service manual. I have got new plugs, air filter and compression tester coming in a few days, so I will get the tank off and drained, air box off, plug the plugs, do the pipe cleaner deal and test the compression.

I understand the compression test is basically to see if all 4 are about the same value, if 1 is lower than the rest it has issues.... But does anybody know what approx. psi I should see with a cold engine?

Also is there any method to test the pressure regulator? The manual shows attaching a pressure gage to a service port on the tank and reading pressure with the engine running......
CFC2156A-5DC0-4196-8674-5F6080D3CC6E.jpeg

I’m hoping there is a simpler method to verify the pressure regulator is okay.

I am in the Houston TX portion of the US of A
 

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That test may not tell if there is a pinhole leak in the diaphragm, which is what iXXion is suggesting. A pinhole leak that can bleed raw fuel thru the vacuum line into the intake. The test I mentioned above might work, but applying an actual vacuum to the vac port is more correct.....don't actually need the engine running. Vac port should/must be bone dry.
 

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Hi all....... plenty of great advice above...... I only wanted to add that I just replaced my FPR (and the little "Joint Set" adaptor that it fits onto)..... just as a precaution after 16yrs & 130k kms (80k mls) - I don't run any E10 fuel, only unleaded gasoline....... so if you have been using E10, change your FPR and 'joint set' regardless as they will have been affected by ethanol by now.......

Like you, I was thinking of buying a fuel pressure tester if I could find one and then I figured it was probably a special Honda tool which I would only use once (and likely would cost $200+Au). It screws on tight so it can handle the 43psi the fuel rail runs. One thing you can test easily is the fuel pump flow rate...... the pump should push 220mls out in 10secs if it hasn't dried out in storage.......... and while your at it........ remove the fuel pump and inspect inside the tank for rust! If you stored the bike with a full tank then you're likely ok, but you need to inspect from the bottom up to see if there is any rust in there - I can talk you through the procedure if you need it - lets just say, I hope there isn't any rust in there ;).

Are all 4 pistons moving when the crank is rotated?....... Is there any broken bits of bits in the sump? Hopefully it was just a FPR backfire that made a horrible noise and all you need do is clean up and install a new FPR (y)
 
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Discussion Starter #19
To all,

Wow, thanks for the comments and help.... worth more than a pound of jelly and bananas in a monkey cage..... So far I have gotten the following done:
  1. Pulled the old air filter - filthy
  2. Pulled the old plugs - not too bad
  3. Dumped the drained oil at the local auto parts store - no bits of engine came out - no visible metal at all, it looked really clean.
  4. Removed fuel tank - smells “varnishy” - will be cleaning it with carb cleaner soon.
  5. Attempted a compression test, but battery is dead and won’t charge and I can’t turn the crank enough to do anything - waiting on a new one to arrive.
  6. Turned the crank by hand a good number of times and it feels what I would say is 100% normal, but I have no experience to base that on.
  7. Read every post on here about FPR’s and the issues caused by them.
  8. Pulled the vacuum line for the FPR and no gas was visible and no smell of gas...:(, but maybe it could have dried up and smell wafted away in the years of sitting....:unsure:
  9. Purchased and received an order of 17 lbs (7.7 kg) of over optimism and have “convinced” myself the sound I heard was like what others have reported with FPR problems, a big old nasty backfire.
  10. Ordered a new FPR and attachment sleeve and an waiting on that to install.
Next plan is to clean the gas flow line as much as possible, so far issues and plan I have is as follows:

  1. Can’t find a correct fuel filter, with the straight inlet / filter / outlet configuration. Only find the straight inlet / filter with curved outlet. Has anybody ever used this new form and left off the curved outlet hose?
  2. If not, I have read soaking the fuel filter in carb cleaner (or other solvents) and blowing it out with air will produce a clean filter, sounds kinda :sneaky: (eeehhh) to me.
  3. Clean out the throttle body tubes and plates with “throttle body cleaner”.... yeah it exists, I was surprised to.... Marketing what a wonderful profession.
  4. NOT clean the fuel injectors, it just feels risky to remove them and spray cleaner through them.... I don’t want to try and find and then PAY for four of them. Will run FI cleaner through the tank.
Then change out the coolant, put in new brake and clutch fluid, install the new FPR, turn the key and be as happy as a pig in pig happiness.

Have I missed anything?
 

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The throttle body plates or butterflies have a crescent shaped black rubberized type coating.......do not attempt to clean this at all, per Honda.
 
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