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Thread: What have you done today?

  1. #311
    Senior Member
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    Cam Douglas
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    I've had some issues with the charging system on my Tre-K not doing its job. I'd be on a ride, everything seemingly OK, arrive at my destination without any clue that anything is wrong. No "BATT" warning on the display. But when I go to re-start the bike there's no juice in the battery.

    Last time it happened I was at a mate's place. When I went to leave, there was not even enough power to actuate the starter relay. We put a voltmeter on the battery and it read 8V. Checked all the fuses - all good. Put it on the charger for a few hours and the voltage came up to over 12V, the bike started normally and was making about 14V when I revved the engine, so I rode it home. Checked it when I got home and it was still behaving normally. Starting and charging OK.

    Anyway, that's the second time it's done that to me, so my confidence in the charging system is somewhat diminished. I need to be able to monitor it when riding and do something about it if it goes belly-up. To that end, I bought a cheap little waterproof voltmeter on eBay and stuck it to the dash mounting bracket with double-sided tape. It's wired so it powers up when I switch on the ignition. The display is bright enough to read in direct sunlight. So far The charging system has been behaving itself, so still no clue as to what the original problem was.
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  2. #312
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    Rolf Wittwer
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    Loss of power

    Quote Originally Posted by Sprocket View Post
    I've had some issues with the charging system on my Tre-K not doing its job. I'd be on a ride, everything seemingly OK, arrive at my destination without any clue that anything is wrong. No "BATT" warning on the display. But when I go to re-start the bike there's no juice in the battery.
    Hi Cam, an interesting new phenomenon! Nice display! In the Aussie FB group there have been two causes for loss of power. They were 1/. Alternator drive coupling coming undone and 2/. Start solenoid terminals not contacting properly due to bolts bottomed in the terminals instead of tightened against the cable lugs. Neither of these sound like your issue. Could something have sucked power out of the battery while the bike was off? I've had something similar when a battery failed in my car. Recharged once or twice but soon died properly. I also had something a bit similar on the TreK, after I neglected to tighten both earth terminal bolts in the early hours while reassembling for the next days ride. In that case the battery still had power but intermittently it didn't get where it was needed, until I discovered my mistake. It was costly, because the ECU was the only earth path and was damaged by the current. Until I found a used ECU I had to disconnect the battery to turn-off the ignition. Hope you get to the bottom of it without being stranded! If you find it is the battery I can recommend the SSB Lithium battery. I am using a LFP14H-BS which is incredibly light, tiny and only $165 delivered via eBay.
    Last edited by Redbaron57; 01-11-2021 at 04:38 AM. Reason: Extra comment

  3. #313
    Senior Member Engenia's Avatar
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    Errol Kowald
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    My money's on your battery Cam, or the terminals. Your alternator was holding up the voltage while the engine was running.
    If that is the case, your voltmeter might show a slight increase in voltage when it happens while the engine is running. That's exactly what happened when the battery failed internally on a Fairlane I had many years ago, while driving on a corrugated gravel road for a few hours. I immediately knew that when I turned the engine off it wasn't going to start again, and it didn't.
    hooroo, Errol www.engenia.com.au [139,200 km - and counting .....]

  4. #314
    Senior Member RobShed's Avatar
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    Robin Shedden
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    My money's on a fecked cell.

  5. #315
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    Cam Douglas
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    I doubt it would show over 12V with a buggered cell. It's a new battery anyway. I suspect a poor connection somewhere in the charging circuit.

  6. #316
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sprocket View Post
    I doubt it would show over 12V with a buggered cell. It's a new battery anyway. I suspect a poor connection somewhere in the charging circuit.
    Still think as do others, its the battery. Had a new one in June this year, went flat in September. charged it back up , fine for two rides, then , zilch 3,8 v .
    Dead as a nit. Got a spare , as you do, no probs since .
    Just get a cheap spare, and try it . At least you can ride out . Over here the weather is shit and we are in lockdown .

    Oh And in the shit , its a race against the vaccine and the numbers infected/ did not make it .
    Last edited by freeatlast; 01-11-2021 at 04:51 PM.

  7. #317
    Senior Member
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    Cam Douglas
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    I sympathise with your problems in UK. Tasmania has been Covid free since about May last year, but it's not all perfect here. It was 37 Celsius here yesterday - a bit too warm for motorcycling.

    As for the bike's charging issues, I remain unconvinced it's a battery issue. I'll monitor it (now that I can check voltage at a glance) and let you know if you're right. In the meantime I carry a little jump-start lithium battery pack in my pocket in case it misbehaves again.

  8. #318
    Senior Member RobShed's Avatar
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    Robin Shedden
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sprocket View Post
    I doubt it would show over 12V with a buggered cell. It's a new battery anyway. I suspect a poor connection somewhere in the charging circuit.
    Almost new is no guarantee?

    A very hot or freshly-charged battery should start a lump despite a dodgy cell or even two. It's 'cold' that's the killer and the real pointer (your 8vDC reading). Post-charging, 12.4 vDC is barely good (12.6 is accepted as good enough with approaching 13 ideal). A rested battery (many hours after use or charging) is the true health indicator.14vDC at the terminals with a multimeter just signifies that the charging circuit is working and good-ish (tbh, I'd have expected better with a handful of revs). The lesser than expected charging voltage could be a sign of dicky charging or more likely dodgy battery.

    As per normal, the lowest cost 'over-hanging fruit' option is the prudent one.

  9. #319
    Senior Member Engenia's Avatar
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    Errol Kowald
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sprocket View Post
    I doubt it would show over 12V with a buggered cell. It's a new battery anyway. I suspect a poor connection somewhere in the charging circuit.
    Measure the voltage as you pull 100A from it. Even better 200A.
    hooroo, Errol www.engenia.com.au [139,200 km - and counting .....]

  10. #320
    Senior Member Rick67's Avatar
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    Rick
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    Today I've mostly been looking around the garage checking tyre pressures on the bikes and cursing at the fact were on an open ended lockdown ... Again ! ..
    I'd rather die riding a bike than of boredom !!

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