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Starting issues R100R

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Mark Calonder
Posts: 1
New Member
Topic starter

Hi All- 1st Posting requesting help.

'92 R100R - starter isn't engaging. Loud click when starter button pushed- installed new Starter relay, charged battery to full (wasn't low in the 1st place), still no starter engagement - just clicks when starter button is pushed.

So- A) am I correct in thinking it's probably a bad solenoid? B) If so, given it's age, considering just buying a brand new starter.  If so, I like what I'm reading about the newer starter technology that have higher RPM's and uses less power than OEM.  Thoughts/ Discussion? Fire away, all.  Mark

Posted : 10/31/2021 07:26
James Strickland
Posts: 421
Reputable Member

Take your starter motor out, open it up and have a look. There have been reports of the permanent magnets in Valeo starters coming un-glued from the housing. Earlier Bosch starters use field windings, which are attached to the case with screws,  become magnetic when the relay energizes the starter. That is why they are power hungry. If you don't mind spending the money, modern starters like the Nippondenso or EME version are considered a vast improvement. 

former Airmarshal, IL.

Posted : 10/31/2021 08:00
Lawrence Erkie
Posts: 37
Trusted Member

It sure sounds like a solenoid issue to me.  

I've used the Valeo starters on a couple or three airheads for many years without a problem.  They were scorned by the venerable Oak years ago due to the glued magnets.  I think subsequent upgrades have made that a problem of the past. In any case, my 1988 R100GS had the OEM Valeo starter for something like 15 years without any problem. My Bosch starter remains boxed and on a workshop shelf.  I'm convinced the Valeo is a better option. 


This post was modified 3 years ago by Lawrence Erkie
Posted : 10/31/2021 10:30
Richard W
Posts: 2552

• Can't speak to the Valeo. No experience with it.

• One recurring issue that plagues the Bosch is age. The grease in the bearings is so old that it oxidizes and gets very thick. So thick that the grease itself is almost a greater load than the engine. If you'll service the Bosch starter, you may never need to investigate the Valeo.

This post was modified 3 years ago by Richard W

Owning an old Airhead is easy.
Keeping an old Airhead running great is the true test.

Posted : 11/04/2021 12:30
Robert Whigham
Posts: 126
Estimable Member

Valeo on my oilhead certainly had magnets come unglued.



Posted : 11/05/2021 10:30


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