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Tips & Tricks To Help Your Charging System

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So I'm sort of getting the impression that R/Rs are somewhat universal... Rather than spending $100 on a replacement for my 1st gen, I'm wondering what donor bikes I might be able to ebay a cheaper one from. CBRs? R1s? What's the deal with that?

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So I'm sort of getting the impression that R/Rs are somewhat universal... Rather than spending $100 on a replacement for my 1st gen, I'm wondering what donor bikes I might be able to ebay a cheaper one from. CBRs? R1s? What's the deal with that?

R1's work, but have odd plugs so they require more tweaking. Look for an R/R from a bike with more electrics (so newer generally) and 3 stator wires going to it. The Red/Green may be Red/Black, and may not be duplicated like the VFR R/R.

I don't think the R/R is the problem, I think it is the wiring. Of course all regulators can fail...happens in cars all the time. Happens less than it used to, but wiring has gotten better in them generally.

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It is amazinq what upgrading the wiring did for my VFR. Now running heated grips, electric jacket liner and regular bike stuff I never run lower than 13.6. Oh the warmth! PS using a 35 dollar R1 reg from ebay. I think it is a 2002 model but not sure.

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Could someone PLEASE condense all of this into an easy to follow how-to for 5th gens with pictures ¡¡POR FAVORRRRR!!

After reading the whole thing I can longer think straight!! :fing02:

1999 and older don't have a sensor wire.

98 and older (ehem). In then end tightwad, as you can see, I smashed up my Vtecker and was forced to keep the 5th gen for I have no car... should have gon through with the 5th gen harness too, plug and play... almost... drool drool...

The 5th Gens, especially the 98-99 are very easy(no monitor wire). Here are pics of the VFR developement for the 5th gen that should help:

5th Gen R/R Fix

Those are nice pics, but would you please explain what you did? What is that wire you have connected the rr mounting bolt?

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Could someone PLEASE condense all of this into an easy to follow how-to for 5th gens with pictures ¡¡POR FAVORRRRR!!

After reading the whole thing I can longer think straight!! :biggrin:

1999 and older don't have a sensor wire.

98 and older (ehem). In then end tightwad, as you can see, I smashed up my Vtecker and was forced to keep the 5th gen for I have no car... should have gon through with the 5th gen harness too, plug and play... almost... drool drool...

The 5th Gens, especially the 98-99 are very easy(no monitor wire). Here are pics of the VFR developement for the 5th gen that should help:

5th Gen R/R Fix

Those are nice pics, but would you please explain what you did? What is that wire you have connected the rr mounting bolt?

The VFRness is just the "Beef up dem wires" thread condensed into a plug and play harness....no soldering/cutting/special tools required. In this case another board member trailered his bike up to have it developed, as I have a 6th gen and wanted a live specimen.

That is where the duplicate ground was connected, to avoid too much going to the battery terminals.

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Can I run a couple of wires from the Red RR wires (using a buttonhook or positap) to the battery and same thing from the green RR wires to a ground? I just want to add to the existing system, not reroute it. Also, would I need to put a fuse on the positive wire coming from the RR to the battery?

Edited by Badazzteacher

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I'm just going to put this out there in case anyone can offer some insight to my situation..

I just put my freshly rewound stator in, plugged in my brand new R/R from Rick's (really nice), and started it up. It runs fine, charges right around 14.5 from idle through 5k. So everything sounds right, right? Well, after about a minute of running, something started smoking. It was the connector with the 2 red and 2 green wires, between the R/R and the harness. It was heating up on the harness side. Basically, that's all I've got right now, it's dark outside and I'm going to get back into it tomorrow. Probably a bad ground, or a short? any advice on how to chase down this problem? It seems real weird to me... two weeks ago, I fried the connector on the stator side of the R/R, now it's frying the connector on the harness side.

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I'm just going to put this out there in case anyone can offer some insight to my situation..

I just put my freshly rewound stator in, plugged in my brand new R/R from Rick's (really nice), and started it up. It runs fine, charges right around 14.5 from idle through 5k. So everything sounds right, right? Well, after about a minute of running, something started smoking. It was the connector with the 2 red and 2 green wires, between the R/R and the harness. It was heating up on the harness side. Basically, that's all I've got right now, it's dark outside and I'm going to get back into it tomorrow. Probably a bad ground, or a short? any advice on how to chase down this problem? It seems real weird to me... two weeks ago, I fried the connector on the stator side of the R/R, now it's frying the connector on the harness side.

Contact Ricks, it sounds like an internal R/R issue. They make a nice product but everyone has bad days or gets a bad piece.

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Can I run a couple of wires from the Red RR wires (using a buttonhook or positap) to the battery and same thing from the green RR wires to a ground? I just want to add to the existing system, not reroute it. Also, would I need to put a fuse on the positive wire coming from the RR to the battery?

Yes, this is exactly what the VFRness does, except I use the frame for ground and a heavy duty inline fuse holder (8 gauge wire). Instead of Button Hooks I added a set of connectors to tee into the harness. Button hook would potentially introduce less possibilities for issues, but can be hard to do without a good soldering gun (not an iron, they don't get hot enough really).

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Can I run a couple of wires from the Red RR wires (using a buttonhook or positap) to the battery and same thing from the green RR wires to a ground? I just want to add to the existing system, not reroute it. Also, would I need to put a fuse on the positive wire coming from the RR to the battery?

Yes, this is exactly what the VFRness does, except I use the frame for ground and a heavy duty inline fuse holder (8 gauge wire). Instead of Button Hooks I added a set of connectors to tee into the harness. Button hook would potentially introduce less possibilities for issues, but can be hard to do without a good soldering gun (not an iron, they don't get hot enough really).

I just did one wire each. One from the red to positive terminal and one from a green to the stock ground point and picked up significant voltage. I am within specs for the idle, but the @5000 rpm I'm still only getting about 13.9. I hope this is fine now because I was making due with a lot les voltage before.

I may go back in and do the other wires if I continue to get charging probs. I am also going to order one of those little digital volt meters so I can monitor the system constantly.

Thanks for your help Tightwad!

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Nice, thanks. I've got the bike running and charging, but I can't help but still worry a little, so having some numbers to watch will be nice.

Just to finish off the last post: I did some investigating trying to see what was causing that connector to heat up, and didn't find anything. I then went ahead and did the wiring mod that Zam started this whole thread with. I did the positive wires from the RR to the battery leads first, and that caused the pos side of the connector to stop heating up. Then I did the RR grounds to frame ground connection, and that completely solved the problem! I opted to skip the beefing up of the actual batt terminal-to-frame ground; the OEM is an 8 gauge wire, only about 7 inches long, and it looks to be in perfectly good shape. If anyone sez there's a good reason to beef up that connection, I will, but I put 140 miles on it on Sunday and everything checked out fine when I checked stuff at every stop. STOKED. Nothing better than a running Viffer.

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Add me to the list on 5th gen. I doubled the 4 charging wires running back to the battery and gained almost 1 volt at 5 grand. The idle volts are up about a half volt. It never has been right since I put a new regulator on about 2 seasons ago so I'm ready to go with one less worry. :biggrin:

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WOW - I haven't been back for awhile - lloks like this thread has taken on a life of its own (over 11,000 views!)

Thanks Tightwad for coming up with a plug and play harness...makes it easy for the masses.

Glad to see this has helped out so many!

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Yea, all the above might prevent this..

gallery_8428_2711_2834.jpg

I have this problem exactly. Does Honda make a replacement connector for this and what is this part so i can ask the dealer or Honda America, customer service? My connector isnt burnt quite as badly but still ugly and causing problems so i need to fix this. Then i will work on reducing the resistance in the charging system.

Thanks

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Just wanted to add my .02 on this...

Most car audio shops have quality wire (in just about any gauge you need) and connectors for just about any of these wiring upgrades. Easy to source, and cost is pretty decent. :rolleyes: Easy to make your own harness if you have the proper stuff to start with.

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I wrote this up for someone and decided I would copy / paste it on here for any interested. I'm sure some / all off it might have been covered elsewhere but I didn't feel like reading all the 100000 electrical posts to verify.

Turn the key on but not running, check voltage on the black ( or black/white) wire at the R/R. Then test battery voltage directly at the battery. She if there is a big difference. Generally the only reason those connectors melt is because the R/R is overworking itself. But in nearly every case its only working itself to much because it thinks the bikes not charged. Two reason, number 1: That black wire is telling the R/R what voltage the battery is ( monitor wire ). If it see's to low of voltage, it tells the R/R to work harder, that's where the heat comes from. That wire is running from the R/R to the key cylinder, then back to the battery, but it passes through some 6 switches/connectors before it gets there, so resistance is a huge issue on that wire, along with a lot of room for voltage drop error. The more voltages the R/R has to product, the more the diode packs inside heat up. Those plastic connectors have a much lower insulation than the wire itself does, so when heat reaches a critical point, the connector will melt before the insulation on the wire will. Number two: You can only push so many volts through a wire before the wire will start restricting the voltage flow, even before it starts to melt. Those two red wires coming off the R/R also route themselves through a few connectors before actually getting the charge from the R/R to the battery. Voltage output on that red wire probably looses some 1/2 a volt by the time it reaches the battery as it passes through the ignition switch and different connectors. So in order for your battery to get a 14.4 volt charge, ( which is where my R/R keeps my battery planted at every second without fluctuating at all, and where ideal charging is ) the R/R would have to push 14.9 volts to allow a 1/2 volt to be lost and get 14.4 to the battery. So my solution. Tap ( solder ) to the two R/R wires coming out of the R/R, leaving the two that are already there in place, because they do to much routing and serve other purposes that I didn't feel like going through, and place a inline fuse in each running the new cables directly to the battery, no connectors, no switches, no voltage loss. Now that black wire you need to pull out of the connector completely because you need to tape off the wiring harness side leaving it hooked to nothing, connect a new wire the the R/R's black wire and run it straight to the battery also, that way its reading exactly whats at the battery and not voltage dropping through connectors.

If you do a backward calculation. Even if you loose about 0.1 volt on every connect made, that's ideal but usually your close to 0.2 on a connector because of the world isn't ideal. If your battery says 14.4v, and the black monitor wire passes through 6 connectors at 0.1 voltage drop per connector that means your R/R would have to charge 0.6v more to keep 14.4v, so your R/R is now pushing 15.0v. Now the red wires pass through about 5 connectors loosing another 0.5v forcing the R/R to be pushing 15.5 volts which you will never see that its pushing that because it loosing it before it reaches the battery and all you see is 14.4 volts ( ideal number ). Your R/R pushes way more than you notice if wiring isn't working properly. Even putting a voltage meter on the battery isn't taking into account how much extra your R/R is having to work to show that number, extra work = extra heat = R/R connector melting because its the weakest point.

Let me know if you have other questions. That's the best way to explain what I've learned and what I've done to fix / prevent future problems on my bikes charging system.

Pictures can be found on the bottom of the first page of this post.

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Good things never last...or lasted about 18 months in this case. The stator just keeps burning up connectors...

IMG_9215Medium.jpg

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Good things never last...or lasted about 18 months in this case. The stator just keeps burning up connectors...

Were those crimped, only? Or crimped and soldered? What kind of crimp tool? I understand there are good ones and less good ones. Interesting outcome.

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Interesting. Looks like the splices couldn't handle anywhere near as much current as the wires.

When the GF's 99 melted the near-new Hitachi stator connector I went into overkill mode, and used 10G spade lugs crimped & soldered. It's been fine since.

My 98 still has the replacement Hitachi that I put on back when my R/R fried 2 Decembers ago. Go figure. That will be going away soon though as I feel like that connector is a ticking time bomb....

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Interesting. Looks like the splices couldn't handle anywhere near as much current as the wires.

When the GF's 99 melted the near-new Hitachi stator connector I went into overkill mode, and used 10G spade lugs crimped & soldered. It's been fine since.

My 98 still has the replacement Hitachi that I put on back when my R/R fried 2 Decembers ago. Go figure. That will be going away soon though as I feel like that connector is a ticking time bomb....

I was all set to do the "eliminate the connector" drill and direct-connect the stator wires to the r/r wires, but now see that apparently a "standard" connection won't work for long. You used "10G spade lugs" and I found this site/pic that shows those: http://workmanship.nasa.gov/lib/insp/2%20books/links/sections/206%20Spade%20Lug%20Terminals.html

1. How did you use spade lug connectors to make the connection? It looks like these go under a bolt head, or something like that, not attached to one another. Did you have one of these lugs on each side?

2. You used 10G lugs - what is the gauge of the stator and r/r wires? It looks smaller than 10 gauge to me, so wouldn't the lug not fit very well? Or am I misunderstanding?

I just want to do this job right, the first time. Thanks for any help.

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Interesting. Looks like the splices couldn't handle anywhere near as much current as the wires.

When the GF's 99 melted the near-new Hitachi stator connector I went into overkill mode, and used 10G spade lugs crimped & soldered. It's been fine since.

My 98 still has the replacement Hitachi that I put on back when my R/R fried 2 Decembers ago. Go figure. That will be going away soon though as I feel like that connector is a ticking time bomb....

I was all set to do the "eliminate the connector" drill and direct-connect the stator wires to the r/r wires, but now see that apparently a "standard" connection won't work for long. You used "10G spade lugs" and I found this site/pic that shows those: http://workmanship.nasa.gov/lib/insp/2%20books/links/sections/206%20Spade%20Lug%20Terminals.html

1. How did you use spade lug connectors to make the connection? It looks like these go under a bolt head, or something like that, not attached to one another. Did you have one of these lugs on each side?

2. You used 10G lugs - what is the gauge of the stator and r/r wires? It looks smaller than 10 gauge to me, so wouldn't the lug not fit very well? Or am I misunderstanding?

I just want to do this job right, the first time. Thanks for any help.

Well I guess the ones I used aren't true "spade" lugs since they have a hole not a slot. I simply bolted them together, and covered 'em with shrink tube. The stator/R/R wires are 12G, but you can put 10G connectors on 'em just fine. Just gotta crimp 'em a bit more. I ALWAYS solder too. Don't trust crimping alone to provide a good electrical connection.

The ones I used look like the yellow one on the R:

59929.jpg?rand=539224160

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Well I guess the ones I used aren't true "spade" lugs since they have a hole not a slot. I simply bolted them together, and covered 'em with shrink tube. The stator/R/R wires are 12G, but you can put 10G connectors on 'em just fine. Just gotta crimp 'em a bit more. I ALWAYS solder too. Don't trust crimping alone to provide a good electrical connection.

The ones I used look like the yellow one on the R:

Thanks for the clarifications.

Re: the soldering, how do you solder after the crimp with that plastic cover in the way on the lug? Do you do away with that? Move it off and then try to slide it back over the now crimped/soldered connection?

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Well I guess the ones I used aren't true "spade" lugs since they have a hole not a slot. I simply bolted them together, and covered 'em with shrink tube. The stator/R/R wires are 12G, but you can put 10G connectors on 'em just fine. Just gotta crimp 'em a bit more. I ALWAYS solder too. Don't trust crimping alone to provide a good electrical connection.

The ones I used look like the yellow one on the R:

Thanks for the clarifications.

Re: the soldering, how do you solder after the crimp with that plastic cover in the way on the lug? Do you do away with that? Move it off and then try to slide it back over the now crimped/soldered connection?

Just use a large, hot iron, heat the lug, & flow solder into the crimp area. Work quickly, and the plastic won't melt too much. If you use too small an iron you'll melt the plastic long before the solder flows. You could always just remove it too since it's getting covered anyway.

Edited by MBrane

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