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Old 08-09-2012, 08:02 AM   #16
GoNOW
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With the new info, it sure sounds to me like you have a problem.

I would bypass the fan switch and force the fan on and turn anything else on to create as much of an load as possible. Then hold the engine at 4,000 RPM or so to simulate running down the road. Then check for voltage drop across all the connectors dealing with the charging system. Also check battery voltage with a DVOM and compare with your meter.

Also check AC voltage on each leg of the stator (especially if you start seeing the low voltage problem). It does not happen often, but a shorted stator can be just fine at idle, but voltage will drop at higher RPMs and/or when it's hot. Check both with no load (regulator unplugged) and under load.

Most of the time when a 3 phase stator starts to die, only a single phase goes, so if you compare the 3 and see one that has lower voltage, then you found your problem.

I am placing more bets on a bad connection. That brown connection is known for having problems.
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Old 08-09-2012, 09:23 AM   #17
jconly OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoNOW View Post
With the new info, it sure sounds to me like you have a problem.

I would bypass the fan switch and force the fan on and turn anything else on to create as much of an load as possible. Then hold the engine at 4,000 RPM or so to simulate running down the road. Then check for voltage drop across all the connectors dealing with the charging system. Also check battery voltage with a DVOM and compare with your meter.
So, with a full load, fan running and all... voltage at the battery reads 14.1V now. When I bring it up to speed, I still get the drop to around 13.5V or so. This feels a little bit better. Not sure what changed to be honest. Cleaned some connectors.


So anyway, I figured I'd check voltage coming straight from the VR as well under these circumstances. Left the ground on the battery, and took the + reading right from where the + DC connects from the VR to the wiring harness. I'm getting a reading of 14.25 --> 14.3 V there. Hmmm. Resistance in the system just nocking down the V @ the battery?



Quote:
Originally Posted by GoNOW View Post
Also check AC voltage on each leg of the stator (especially if you start seeing the low voltage problem). It does not happen often, but a shorted stator can be just fine at idle, but voltage will drop at higher RPMs and/or when it's hot. Check both with no load (regulator unplugged) and under load.

Most of the time when a 3 phase stator starts to die, only a single phase goes, so if you compare the 3 and see one that has lower voltage, then you found your problem.
Checked this yesterday as I mentioned. Everything came back equal and fine, around 65VAC on each leg, around 5000 RPM. Seems normal.


Quote:
Originally Posted by GoNOW View Post
I am placing more bets on a bad connection. That brown connection is known for having problems.
I hope you're right, but I sure as hell cant find it. I've disconnected and cleaned almost everything, with the exception of some of those really hard to get to ground spots on the engine. Unfortunately, that means the battery ground.

I did pick up a 11.2 AH battery this morning to test ,to see if this makes a difference.... But when I took measurements of the 8AH that was installed in the bike this morning, it was sitting happily at 12.95V. Had it tested at Batteries Plus when I got the new one, and it was testing somewhere around 230 CCA (Rated 180). Used it to start the bike to do these tests just now, and the lowest drop it saw was down to 10V. Better than the 9 yesterday..


Well, I guess I'll try the larger battery now to see what happens.
Will also let the bike run for a good while too to test the stator again once it's up to temperature.
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Old 08-10-2012, 11:16 AM   #18
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Ok, so enough is enough...

I finally went ahead and bolted everything together and took her for a real ride for some real world testing... AKA let the components really heat up vs this 15min at a time thing in the garage.


So, here's what I found... everything is basically the same as it was before!
All connectors cleaned, WD-40'd, etc... with the proper sized battery in.

But, paying a little closer attention than my previous rides, I did seem to learn something. Here's the breakdown:

At the beginning of my ride...
13.1 - 13.4 V @ throttle.
Roll off, and things would gradually climb back to 14V
If fan would hit, @ Idle, voltage would sit at 14V, @ throttle it would sit at 13.1 - 13.4V based on RPM. (This is different than my initial ride here, so I guess cleaned connections did help)


But, when things started to heat up, inconsistency set in...
@ Idle, things wouldn't always climb to 14V. Sometimes it would stay in the 13.1 - 13.4V range. Under power, I would still get these figures, but it was not a consistent DECLINE (read: voltage has always dropped as RPM increased) as it was before. It was all over the place. When the fan would hit, voltage would drop to 12.8V, wether @ idle or under power. And, I took it one step further this time, I let the bike sit @ idle with the fan on. 12.8V lasted for a while, but eventually started to flick to 12.7V. This lead me to believe it was draining my batter (which I've been very careful to keep charged @ max.)


And some other things I have learned from testing and more thorough searching..

Voltage directly from the stator would read 14.2V - 14.3V @ idle during garage tests. But 14.0V @ the battery (or the positive post and engine ground.) Theres definitely some resistance in the system, and from looking at the wiring diagrams, I am surprised that direct VR output snakes through such a complex system before finally making its way back to the battery.

One other thing I learned from from following the wiring diagram for the 07-08 990 EFI starter diagram... I don't have any continuity to the switched ACC circuit @ the fusebox, from the VR on either + cable. Everything else was fine... maybe I tested something wrong?





And finally, I also managed to find one other post on here where someone had stated the output from the Stator should read around 75VAC on all three phases. Problem is, no output RPM was mentioned. I'll take this to mean that my consistent 65VAC @ 5K RPM across all three phases means my Stator is good. Especially with no grounding found.



So, what's next??
Well I'm throwing my old battery back in for the trip home.
Figure if I'm going to kill one of them, it might as well be the smaller 8AH one, especially since it's seen some stress.

I'm also going to be ordering up a new VR. This is the only thing left that I feel could possibly be wrong. Torn right now between Rick's Mosfet, or a Shindegen Mosfet. Right now I'm leaning towards the Shindegen route, and replacing all my connectors with it... assuming it bolts up fine. The Stator to VR connector will definitely be replaced. Haven't yet decided if I'l going to earth the VR in the same place, and connect the positive to the same position either. If I don't connect both + & - from VR direct to battery, I'll definitely be updating the existing connector to the harness with something sealed as well.

Will keep this thread updated, in hopes this will help someone else out.
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Old 08-10-2012, 11:26 AM   #19
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This link should give you some good options and more universal VR fittings:

http://roadstercycle.com/index.html

Here are some other bike installs to review:

http://www.triumphrat.net/maintenanc...r-install.html


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Old 08-10-2012, 11:36 AM   #20
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I have been having the same problem. Everything checked out OK. I cleaned all the connections and it seemed to to be fine. I started to crank it the other night and it seemed like a weak battery. Then it just started clicking.Load tested the battery and it was good. Took the connections back apart including grounds.Seems good now.I'll be interested to hear your prognosis because I'm leaving for Colorado next Thursday. So hurry up and check it out!
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Old 08-10-2012, 02:15 PM   #21
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Spent some time reading this thread and am inclined to think that the VR is shot.

Symptoms of course only show up when it gets hot. VR's are what's called shunt regulators... ie when the battery is charged they shunt the current to ground which causes heat.

If the voltages are all over the place that suggests fouled connectors. The AC your seeing sounds within spec.

With the ADV bikes the regulator is in a place that is very susceptible to water ingress, as well as the battery. If the battery has connectors similar to a motobat battery make sure that the posts are on tight and that the earth strap has been removed and cleaned.

One would also think that and 8ah battery would be way too small for a 990.

The 12ah battery on my SE will run UHF radio, Heated Grips, two Lightforce Lights & Two fans with very little voltage drop.
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Old 08-14-2012, 06:20 AM   #22
jconly OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AdvGa View Post
This link should give you some good options and more universal VR fittings:

http://roadstercycle.com/index.html

Here are some other bike installs to review:

http://www.triumphrat.net/maintenanc...r-install.html


Thanks, have checked those out, and basically every other Shindengen writeup I could find.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bomose View Post
I have been having the same problem. Everything checked out OK. I cleaned all the connections and it seemed to to be fine. I started to crank it the other night and it seemed like a weak battery. Then it just started clicking.Load tested the battery and it was good. Took the connections back apart including grounds.Seems good now.I'll be interested to hear your prognosis because I'm leaving for Colorado next Thursday. So hurry up and check it out!
I'm on it! So here's a little update...


Finally made it back home to NYC... what a trip it's been.
A day or two before leaving, I decided to throw the original battery in. Then I decided to test it out again, and by test it... I mean do something stupid like go ride some more technical trails in the woods. Mistake.

A few drops, and a few slow sections and the bike wouldn't start up. Battery completely dead. And it went from a good healthy reading of running around 13.5V and a resting voltage of 12.8V, to completely nothing. No lights w/ key on, nothing. Of course I didn't bring my new spare with me. So, I pushed the sucker as far up a hill out of the woods as I could before surrendering and calling a local friend. He picked me up and took me back to my temporary garage to get the new battery. Put it in and all was fine.

When I got the old 8AH battery home after the ride, it was reading a resting voltage of around 12.7V. This was about 2 hours after it wouldn't even light up the bike. I let it sit the rest of the night, and checked again in the morning. It had climbed to 12.9V. At this point, I'm pretty convinced that it's just plain faulty. Load tested fine at the store, but yea, totally unreliable.

So, of course I do the sensible thing and throw it back in the bike for my home! Hey why fry a brand new batt if I don't have to.

So, I figure the ride back to NYC, I'll just take all interstate. Keep the charging system running at it's 13.4V, keep the fan off and all will be good. BORING! Hopped off, rode some twisty dirt roads. Kept the fan off, but after hopping back onto some local tarmac, I watched the volts just drop, without the fan running. And by drop I mean not just down to the 12.7V on the battery, I mean down to 12... 11.8V etc.

Of course, next fuel stop the bike wont start, so I throw in the new battery. Fingers crossed because at this point it looks like the VR had just completely shit the bed. New battery in and everything is running fine (consistent with the symptoms.) Thank god. Managed to make it back to my garage. Plugged the new battery in the tender and before leaving the garage that night it was reading full charge.


So, I ordered up a Shindengen FH020AA. I had read some reports of people using the FH012AA. Wanted to make sure there wasn't a difference, so for anyone wondering the 020 replaces the 012. So, seems that's the one to go with. Expecting it to show up tomorrow or Thur, so stay posted.
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Old 08-14-2012, 07:44 AM   #23
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When that happened to me, the battery was on its way to cross to the other side. Put a fresh battery in and voltage went steady again.
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Old 08-14-2012, 08:32 AM   #24
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I was gonna say......
voltage regulator and stator rarely if ever malfunction
usually it is bad battery connections or a weakened battery
leaving a battery low on charge overnight will kill it
and it needs to be fresh and not sitting on the shelf at the shop for 10 years and not overcharged intitially
you can even get a new battery that is junk too, rarly but it happens
8 AH is no where near enough, starting it would be like trying to plow a field with a pony, 14 AH is more like a plow horse

battery voltage should be more like 13 to 13.8 at rest
12-13volts could be a sign that it is getting weak on storage amps
sounds like the VR is working properly by dropping back at hi rev
all the readings you report point to battery condition
the battery is the capacitor in the charging system , If the battery has a weak cell, voltage fluctuations will be apparent as the voltage regulator attempts to compensate for the lack of steady rate capacitance through the battery

Battery is difficult to test for amperage capacity .sometimes voltage looks OK and the lights seem brite, but it just doesnt have enough output power, You would need a load tester,
it sucks because it is hard to believe the battery is actually bad and it costs so much to gamble on at $150 for a battery so I dont want to be the guy to tell you to roll the dice
I got a nice Yuasa here in the shed that has been holding 12.2 volts for years but it wont start the bike , I keep it around to test 12 volt devices and such

always buy the highest quality lead acid battery possible for this bike and treat her like a lady, its worth the extra $
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Dustodust screwed with this post 08-14-2012 at 08:54 AM
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Old 08-14-2012, 12:57 PM   #25
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Wish is just was the battery, but even with the new one in for the remainder of the trip, when that fan hit, down to 12.8 and lower it went.
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Old 08-14-2012, 04:48 PM   #26
Sumi
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Using my GPSMAP 276c as a voltmeter would give me strange voltages as well..
Anything from 11.9V-14V.. (fluctuating between 12.9-13.4 is the most common readout on my unit while cruising at let's say.. 4500 rpm)

I've been using the bike like this for almost a year now, and there is not a problem with it..

I guess it's only the GPS's voltmeter, that's not that accurate ( I guess it under-measures the correct voltage by a 0.5V minimum).

I wouldn't be scared if the volts stay between ~12.0-~14.5V (when engine is running at any rpm)

just my $0.02:)
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Old 08-14-2012, 08:45 PM   #27
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Mine seems to be working OK right now. I went for a 250 mile ride Sunday with no problems. I've started the bike 6 times in a row. The resting rate is @ 12.9 volts. At 5000 rpm it charges @ 14.1. I'm leaving Thursday morning. Wish me luck. I did hook up a wire so I could jump start it if I had to. Problem is, I'll be riding with a Harley guy, so that would be embarrassing. I'll report back in 10 days, if I'm able.
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Old 08-14-2012, 09:01 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by bomose View Post
Mine seems to be working OK right now. I went for a 250 mile ride Sunday with no problems. I've started the bike 6 times in a row. The resting rate is @ 12.9 volts. At 5000 rpm it charges @ 14.1. I'm leaving Thursday morning. Wish me luck. I did hook up a wire so I could jump start it if I had to. Problem is, I'll be riding with a Harley guy, so that would be embarrassing. I'll report back in 10 days, if I'm able.
Good luck!
12.9 resting does seem low to me (I guess it depends what kind of load you have at idle) but at least your having, what seems to me at least, a normal increase in V w/ RPM.

My idea of how a charging system "should" work may be incorrect, but it is my ultimate goal... That is a resting rate of at least 14.0 V under a "normal" load, and a rate of around 14.3V under throttle. We'll see how this Shindengen effects things, but I'm hoping that's the outcome.

Especially as I plan to add a greater load to the system compared to the minimal voltmeter + gps combo I'm running now. Ultimate goal is to add heated grips (3A) and at least one 2A USB charging load to the system with no adverse effects. Ideally a charging solution for laptop as well. Shouldn't be a problem with a properly functioning RR IMHO.
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Old 08-14-2012, 09:41 PM   #29
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We'll see how this Shindengen effects things, but I'm hoping that's the outcome.
Let me know how this works.
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Old 08-14-2012, 11:38 PM   #30
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When you see voltage difference, are all conditions similar?

During a trip, the lights could be on, the fan start working, lights turned on or heated equipment. People that see voltage fluctuations have all consumption equipment unchanged?
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