Buddy 125 Starter Fix

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jimmu
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Joined: Tue Jul 05, 2016 8:18 pm

Buddy 125 Starter Fix

Post by jimmu »

My new to me 2009 Buddy 125 had weak starting so I put in a new battery. Soon after that it stopped starting altogether, only clicks from the solenoid. After testing with a multimeter and determining that the starter was at fault, I removed it and took it apart. I discovered that the brushes were stuck in their holders due to dust and gunk. I cleaned it up with sandpaper, wd40 and compressed air, greased the shaft and it's as good as new.

I just wanted to report this $0 fix so that perhaps someone won't buy a new $150+ starter when the original could be easily fixed.
ucandoit
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Joined: Wed Sep 24, 2014 12:21 am
Location: Minnesota

Post by ucandoit »

Thank you. Such info. helps a lot. Parts often aren't damaged or worn out, just gunked up or need cleaning. My 2008 Buddy, from time to time, won't start and I find that the battery is fine; but the battery terminals need shining up with sandpaper. That does the trick.
quinbus
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Joined: Sun Jul 13, 2014 1:14 pm
Location: St. Louis

Re: Buddy 125 Starter Fix

Post by quinbus »

jimmu wrote:My new to me 2009 Buddy 125 had weak starting so I put in a new battery. Soon after that it stopped starting altogether, only clicks from the solenoid. After testing with a multimeter and determining that the starter was at fault, I removed it and took it apart. I discovered that the brushes were stuck in their holders due to dust and gunk. I cleaned it up with sandpaper, wd40 and compressed air, greased the shaft and it's as good as new.

I just wanted to report this $0 fix so that perhaps someone won't buy a new $150+ starter when the original could be easily fixed.
I'll second that!

Having the same problems with 2009 125. I had isolated it to the starter because I could give it a nice hard rap with a socket extension handle and it would get going again, but grow weaker and weaker over weeks until it wouldn't work at all.

$150 for a new starter motor for a 125 Buddy (someplaces even higher)!

I had watched online about how to rebuilt starter motors for motor scoots and I was pretty sure that I could do it, but while taking out the starter isn't hard, it takes about 30 minutes of loosening and removing the air filter/hoses and threading the starter cable through the chassis. I was reluctant to take it out, take it apart and potentially rebuild the starter all the while having the bike out of service (can't run the scoot without the starter installed because of the open hole in the transmission.

So....

I went ahead and ordered the replacement part :cry: and made the swap this afternoon. Runs like a charm!

But when I took the old starter apart, the same thing had happened as with Jimmu: One of the brushes had stuck in it's race and was no longer making contact with the commutator. Wiggled it a little bit and it popped out with plenty of brush to last many more years, but it wasn't making contact with the commutator once arcing and wear and opened up the gap so that insufficient voltage could flow to the one side of the rotor...

Cleaned it up, burnished the commutator lands, blew out the graphite dust and put it all back together. Tested it on a 12v battery and it turns so had it jumps off the bench. So, I have a perfectly good starter motor, slightly used and didn't need to buy the new one at all. :cry:

I guess I'm going to find out if anybody on eBay will be interested in buying a used, but perfectly working starter for cheaper...

Anyway, if you can afford the time to pull the starter before you order, it might save you some bucks. And, if you're a mind to rebuild the existing one, it isn't that hard to do, but will require finding a suitable replacement brush and doing a little soldering. There's a nice youtube about that process if you're interested.

Q!
RussH
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Location: San Diego - after August

Post by RussH »

Bringing this back... just fixed my starter after finding this thread. Saving that $$
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DeeDee
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Location: Denver

Post by DeeDee »

See, the world wide internet isn't just for sharing cute cat videos. I knew this was a good thing. Great information people!
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buzzvert
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Joined: Sun Jul 28, 2019 11:44 pm
Location: Longmont, CO

Post by buzzvert »

I don't recall if the starter on the Buddy shares the same form factor with more generic GY6 starters- but yes, the Buddy starter is pretty serviceable. I've only ever seen them fail electronically when someone attempts to jump their scoot from a high-amp charger. 10A is as high as I go safely to check/start a Buddy and I only charge the battery at a 2A max. Nothing worse than hearing that "starter sizzle".
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