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Discussion Starter #1
Hey everyone!

So I have a yamaha XJ750 Maxim that just won't start. I picked the bike up off a guy that said he had it running all summer then right before fall it stopped running. He didn't have the money to fix it so I got it from him cheap. When I go to start it though I pull the clutch, flip the kill switch, and press the starter, nothing happens. The only thing that happens is that the lights all dim. I've talked to people before they all said the light dimming is normal. Now at first my friend, who worked on bikes almost his whole life, and myself thought it was the starter solenoid, well we replaced that and still the same outcome. We tried jumping the starter and it sounds like it was to try to turn over when we did that but would fully turn over so we know the starter works. Battery charging at around 12.56-14.26 depending if it sat for a day or if I just tried fixing it so I know there's juice in there. Also worth noting, we tried to get spark but got nothing. Before that we tried to jump the bike from a car battery and nothing happened. Last night I took the tank off so I could start tracing wiring when I get home today but I'm fairly new to working on bikes without the help of friends who 100% know what they are doing. Any ideas on what else could be wrong? Any help/advice would be greatly appreciated! Thank you all so much!
 

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There is a little confusion in your post.
Remove all the plugs and then try to turn it over.
Watch out for flying gas or oil from the plug holes.

If the starter motor does not turn at all with the plugs out, then you need to chase the voltage and see where you are losing it.
If the starter turns but slowly with the plugs out, the starter itself is probably bad.

And where are you getting those battery voltages ??
If that is with a charger connected, the readings are meaningless.

You could still just have a very dead battery or a bad main connection.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Hey guys sorry I should have read through the post a second time before posting so let me just clarify everything from the start.

So I bought the bike from the guy. He told me he ran it all last summer then one day he went to start it up and it wouldn't start. The "starting" problem is when you go to actually start it (key in, clutch in, everything) and press the start button nothing happens, not even a click from the solenoid. The only thing that happens is that the lights go dim when I press the start button.

A friend and I tried doing some work we thought it was the solenoid so we replaced it with the same outcome.

We tried jumping the starter, it spun but wouldn't turn. Later we tried jumping the battery from a car battery and nothing happened.

Also when trying to get spark while jumping the starter we got nothing.

When I checked the battery voltage that was with a multimeter without a charger on it, I don't know why someone would check it with a charger on haha I may sound a little dumb but I'm not that dumb haha.

Anyway any other questions you have or advice you can give with that clarification I'd love to help out! Thanks guys!
 

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The only thing that happens is that the lights go dim when I press the start button.

We tried jumping the starter, it spun but wouldn't turn.

When I checked the battery voltage that was with a multimeter without a charger on it,
Which lights exactly go dim ? On most modern bikes, the headlights go OUT while trying to start.....by design.

And what does "jumping the starter" mean ?
And what spun and what didn't turn ??

You need to use that multimeter a bit more and see, when you push the start button, where there is voltage and where not.

The start button itself should pass voltage to the small wire on the solenoid. If it doesn't, then one of the safeties might be bad (clutch, sidestand, neutral).
That should make the solenoid operate and pass voltage from the input fat cable to the output fat cable going to the starter.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Head light goes out, which I read happens when you start, gauge lights dim and neutral light goes out too, I just figured it was worth noting in the post. I call it jumping the starter but its when I took spare wire and put it from the solenoid to the battery and you can hear the starter spinning. All the safeties were checked and everything was fine.
 

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It appears that you have at least two problems.
1) Start button doesn't make the starter turn.
2) When the starter does turn, the starter clutch or bendix doesn't engage.
But both could be caused by a weak battery. The "dashboard" lights dimming are a good clue.
 

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I thought he said he tested it.
The only mention of any kind of battery test was a statement that the voltage was as high as 14.2 volts.........while NOT connected to a charger.......and presumably with the bike NOT running, since it won't start.

Unless it was just disconnected from a charger, that reading is suspect.
He definitely made no mention of a load test.
 

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I agree with Easy. This sounds very much like a battery that shows proper voltage (although 14v is awfully high for a static battery, just sitting there), but hasn't enough amperage to turn the bike over. A load test is the only way to verify this.
 

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I recently bought an 82 xj750 Maxim. I go to start it, usually but not necessarily always when its cold, and the starter bogs or does nothing. The lights will dim way down like there is a massive power drain. At first I thought the battery was dying or dead as even a car jump would barely get it to turn. But after i charge the battery i had the same issue. Remembering how I used to have to crawl under old Chevys and bang on the starter, i tried that. Low and behold it started right up. This will work for a few days then it gets to where it doesnt. When that happens, I just charge the battery. Wash, rinse, repeat. I've looked into getting a starter but lack of funds prevent that at the moment. But I have run across rebuild kits on ebay for a fraction of the cost of a new starter. Question: What is malfunctioning in the starter to cause this and can it be remedied with the rebuild kit? Even though it's cheaper than a new starter, I can't afford to buy the kit if it won't solve the problem. Thanks in advance for any help and info on this matter.
 

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Sounds to me like you have two problems:
Weak/old/worn out battery.
And worn brushes in the starter.

If you have an electric motor repair shop nearby, they probably can rebuild the starter for you fairly cheap.
Can you replace the brushes yourself ? Yes, probably.
But the armature needs to be cleaned at the same time and that is a bit more difficult.

Battery is about $85 probably.

Charging voltage needs to be checked too, mostly to be sure the stator is still good.
 
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