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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
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I know this is on here somewhere, but I couldn't find it. You all know the thing I'm talking about- it's beside the battery and has 3-4 wires coming into it. The wires have heated up repeatedlyover the years and become brittle. I'm having increasing trouble with the bike cutting off, and I have to pull over, remove the cover, and play with those wires till I get power again.

I have the Dupli-Tech alternator conversion kit installed, so the stator is of no concern, just in case some of those wires go there.

How can I fix this before I'm stranded for good?
 

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That was common enough that Honda made a fix-kit for it, but I don't know any part numbers. Basically you will need to replace the relay/solenoid, cut the burnedwires back and probably solder some fresh extensions onto what's left ofthem, with female spade clips on them to fit the males on the relay.

That's the way Honda did warranty fixes on it before the kit.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
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So there's no good way to bypass the relay/solenoid entirely and just, I don't know, twist some wires together? :tongueout:
 

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DO NOT JUST TWIST WIRES TOGETHER!
YES I AM YELLING

You cannot twist the wires tight enough for a good connection.

If you are talking about the starter contactor, (solenoid) that device main contacts must withstand the starter current 90A -120 A if the starter is good, but if any problems the starter can suck up to 150 A or more.

Again if it is the starter contactor, work through your system from the load, the starter to the battery and all cables, connections. Everything clean, no corrosion, rust, oxide of copper (green stuff).

The contacts of the contactor start to fail and increase resistance and heat. This heat works into the cables and melts, burns them up. If you have to replace them use the next bigger size and only solder then to good quality clean copper, no crimp lugs.

The starter motor itself must be verified, use a DC amprobe, a clamp on meter that reads DC amp via induction no cutting into the wires.

Existing solenoid can be repaired but takes know how, if you need to replace use a Ford simple starter solenoid, but remember the primary contacts are big and the secondary contacts are the control contacts used to power the contactor via the coil and the coil may have only a + connection with the - contact being made through the mounting of the solenoid to the body, in your case the frame of the bike. You may need a # 14 wire to ground the solenoid.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
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Thanks, ARKnapp, for the info. I deserved the yelling, lol- even though I don't think I would have done that.
 

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Just trying to get your attention, so you do not makes things worse for yourself. :waving:
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·

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wolfy wrote:
So there's no good way to bypass the relay/solenoid entirely and just, I don't know, twist some wires together? :tongueout:
Are you talking about doing something like installing an in-line 30amp main fuse? Like this??:





 

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By-pass a controller that operates a 100 A load is quite a lot to ask for.

A contactor is able to control at about 12 V 100 Amps at the correct time the amps enabling the starter motor to start, run up, turn the engine then stop the starter motor.

The good thing is it can do all this with you pushing the start button, then releasing it when the engine starts.

To by pass this, yes, you can use 2 wires, shorted together then open the wires up when the engine starts

But instead of a thumb on the button you are going to need 2 hands to handle the wires. The 2 wires are going to spark, when closed but more so when opened. Because DC current is such that it does not want to stop when switches are open.

It is this phenomenon that occurs that design of DC contactors quell the spark when shutting off. By-passing the starter device that turns on/off the starter motor can be intermittent for testing but to by-pass that device could be dangerous.

If the solenoid is acting up, it cannot start/stop the 100 A of current safely. Sign of this are:
Starter motor remains on
Starter motor does not engage
High heat on leads to or from starter because what goes into the starter in amps comes out
There is no limiting device as fuse that controls the starter.
The starter motor draws on average 100 A at 10-15 V directly from the battery
1000W to 1500 W of power
loose connections are heaters with that amount of energy going through them.
And that includes the contacts of the contactor, the wires, the terminations and the actual motor and the battery and its terminations
It is no wonder you should let the starter motor rest between start attempts to allow cooling.
A starter motor can get so hot that it will melt soldered connections and actually fling the melted solder out of the commutator. And self destruct within 2 minutes with constant pushing of the starter push button.

Remember no more than 3 seconds on at a time with 20-30 seconds waiting time and never more than 3 attempts.

Anything more will possibly destroy that series wound motor and the non starting tells you there is something wrong, so don't add a fried motor to an already problematic situation.
 

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Do it right, with Honda parts, and it may last another 25 years. Or Mickey Mouse it and maybedo it again next year.
 

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Bike...and Dennis wrote:
Do it right, with Honda parts, and it may last another 25 years. Or Mickey Mouse it and maybedo it again next year.
I beg to differ with my Esteemed fellow Forum Member Dennis but Honda parts were tossed out of the equation when Wolfy mentioned that he has the Dupi-Tech conversion which supplies a LOT more amperage than the stock charging system!!! A bit more info is needed here as to how the conversion is connected to the bikes charging system, how many add-ons there are, and whether they are drawn through the OEM 30amp"dogbone fuse" set-up....
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
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Well, the bike bit the dust this morning. It cut off and I ended up blowing the dogbone fuse while trying to manipulate the wires to get power. Luckily, I was able to coast it home.

I want to do this repair right. The problem isn't just the fuse, it's the whole fuse block that's brittle and burned.

Roscoepc, to answer your questions- I can't remember exactly how I wired the alternator in, but it was straight forward, nothing fancy. I have no add-ons, and the original dogbone fuse and block are what I need to replace.

Now, given that the setup I have now supplies more amps than stock, will that affect how a replacement kit will perform? I'm ready to order that one from eBay right now. I don't want to lose this perfect riding weather!
 

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Both of you make valid points and that is why I expressed the points of the system. OEM equipment is good but the use must match the load. As soon as the load is increased, a part needs to be up graded.

Honda starter relays or contactors are rated for that bike starter with not much left over. The Ford contactor for example is a lot bigger in electrical size, not much in physical size.

Knowing what you can change and get away with it, is better than not knowing and after all we are all in the same boat when we own 32 year old bikes and often as not OEM parts may not be available. And buying used parts from another older bike may or may not fix the problem.

Information is very important, how that info is used is just as important. And then we have to live with the decision.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
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ARKnapp, you've forgotten more about this stuff than I'll ever know. All I do want to know is will an aftermarket replacement relay/solenoid work in this instance, and will I be cheating myself of the boosted amps I get now? I do plan to add more lights or toys to the bike eventually.



I don't mind being the guinea pig in this, but I'd like to get all opinions before I do.

And just let me say how much- as always- I appreciate the advice and input.
 

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Originally, the two "red/white" wires from voltage reg/rectifier went to one wire at a splice, then into the plug then through aset of connectors to internal connection inside starter relay and then to run the bike, back through a seperate set of connectors into the "red" wire. These two sets of connectors are located in C103 .



The updated Honda plug modified this routing by adding a jumper outside of the plug which I added into my wiring diagram drawing July 28, 1998. The internal path inside the starter relay through two sets of connectors remains, but now it is augmented with another path prior to the two sets of connectors.



I'ld alsotake outthat 30 amp dogbone fuse that's shown inside the starter relay, use a 30 amp HD Fuse holder with 12 ga wire that holds a tubular glass type fuse is what I did, it's spring loaded, I disssymbled it and soldered connections whetre crimped and then soldered two ring terminals on it and placed it in place of the dogbone fuse and routed fuse holder behind starter relay. The relay is built on a plastic housing and the dog bone is thin metal, as they heat and cool they grow at different rates, eventually the dogbone fuse developes a crack.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
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The updated Honda plug modified this routing by adding a jumper outside of the plug....

So you think I should get the Honda assembly instead of an eBay special?
 

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You can do either! The modified OEM is already done, or buy a Ford or similar and modify it as the OEM.

Or buy an aftermarket contactor that will fit the limited space where the original was located and with this aftermarket make sure it can handle the amp load.

Voltage is all the same at 12-15 V DC or so but amperage is the killer. Most starter contactors are built with large enough contacts and real good one have silver plate or silver alloy contacts.

Most cars are 4, 6 or 8 cylinders and the contactor must be big enough to handle the starting load and in cars that would range from 125A to 300 A. The problem is not the starter contactor but the physical sizes.

You may have to twist, bastardize, or somehow get that bigger car contactor within the bike frame.

I have used the Ford Fender solenoid because first it's cheap, second it is small and third it is in great supply...but it is not a direct replacement. Wires, connectors, added ground connection will have to be done.

For someone familiar with electrical modifications no big deal, for some one not familiar with modifying electrical devices the job could be a hassle.

By all means do your repairs but do it to your abilities. If you get stuck post pictures and we will help out.
 

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I got a replacement solenoid and fuse block from Rick's Powersport Electrics and it was a pretty easy swap. I carry the original with a 30 amp inline fuse that replaces the dogbone around in the saddlebag as an emergency backup.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
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Well, I ordered one from eBay, so we'll see. It appears to have a blade type fuse. I'll let you guys know how it goes.
Thanks to everyone.
 
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