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Tech Corner

Technical Q and A for classic motorcycle maintenance and repair.


Sticking Starter on Honda CB550

Motorcycle Classics tech expert Keith Fellenstein

Editor’s note: If you’re having trouble with that old Suzuki, BSA or BMW, Keith Fellenstein is your guy. From motorcycle tuning tips to detailed motorcycle engine repair, he can draw from a wealth of experience to help guide you to success. Send questions to: Keith’s Garage, 1503 SW 42nd St., Topeka, KS 66609, or send an e-mail with “Keith’s Garage” as the subject.

Sticking starter

Q: The starter won’t disengage on my Honda CB550. The instant you turn on the key, the starter motor starts to turn. What’s wrong? Is it my starter button? — Kurt Limesand/via email

A: It may be the switch in the handlebars, but there is also a strong possibility that you have a stuck starter solenoid. I’d start by disconnecting the thinner signal wires to the solenoid and turning the key on again. If the problem disappears, the starter button circuit is shorted out. If the problem persists, your starter solenoid is stuck and will need to be replaced. MC