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" A dirty fuel filter is a common cause for a voltage regulator to fail on a fuel-injected bike. " I found this quoted on the Powerlet website and thought that it would be interesting to hear people's opinions on it given that the R/R is the the main area of sudden failure on the otherwise indestructible VFR's. Scroll down to Table 4 " What if I don't have enough power?" #3 http://www.powerlet.com/learningCenter/excessCapacity
I replaced the original OEM regulator/rectifier [r/r] on my 2001 5th gen with a Shindengen SH847 series-style r/r from roadstercycle.com. There were no problems evident with my elecrical system, but with 48,595 miles on my old[ish] VFR, I might be on borrowed time with the all-original wiring, stator and r/r. I read through the pinned threads on the vfrd electrical forum: 'stator tests', 'electrical upgrade', and 'tips and tricks' - thanks to everyone who contributed their advice and experiences to these informative threads. Thanks to Duc2V4 for his guidance and for introducing me to roadstercycle.com and introducing me to Jack, the craftsman behind the roadstercycle website. Special thanks to Jack for his excellent suggestions, products, service, and for showing me his amazing shop and machines. Readings before beginning project: 12.9v on the battery with ignition switch off 0.8-0.9ohms across all three stator legs when disconnected from r/r [my meter reads 0.6ohms when I short the two probes together] No continuity from any stator leg to ground 19-20v on all three stator legs at 1200rpm idle [engine temp 174F] 61-63v on all three stator legs at 5000rpm I neglected to check battery voltages with engine running before I began I used this nifty $20 voltmeter [It also has two USB charging ports] from ebay for continuous battery voltage display - plugged it into my always-on steering stem power outlet. I compared it to my multi-meter, and they displayed the same voltages: Here is the original OEM r/r with leads disconnected: The connectors on the cables coming from the stock r/r didn't look bad, though the connector on the stator wires was a bit discolored: The series-type SH847 is $50.00 more than the popular mosfet SH020AA, but operates on demand instead of constantly, runs even cooler than mosfet, and has a 50 amp capacity. I went with it because I've been doing track days and don't want to challenge the r/r if I have to unplug the lights before taping them over [the headlights melt through polyethylene tape if you leave them on after you tape them over - ask me how I know]. The SH847 connectors are built onto the r/r. Roadstercycle sells the SH847 as a kit and makes up the connectors/cables for the battery and stator leads from 10 gauge marine grade wire: The SH847 is a physically larger unit - here it is next to the stock r/r: Before purchasing, I made an actual size mockup and taped it in place to test fit it under the rear cowl in the stock r/r location. It would have efficient cable routing and clear the cowl and passenger rear set assembly if oriented with the connectors facing forward, which would mean the cooling fins would be perpendicular to airflow as I perceived it. Jack said the series-type and mosfet Shindengen r/r's don't care about airflow direction: After visiting roadstercycle.com, receiving an education and a tour from Jack, then picking up r/r kits for my bike and for member Hammerdrill's 's 6th gen, I fit the SH847 in place, mapped out its location, and marked where to drill the top mounting hole [Yes, I cleaned up the hole with a rat tail file after drilling]: This left the new r/r's bottom mounting hole just below the bottom rail of the subframe. I hate mixing SAE and metric fasteners [I never know if I'll remember the right size tools later], but my best mounting solution was the threaded endpiece of this 1/4-20 draw bolt. I used the threaded piece to grab the subframe from underneath by threading it onto a bolt running through the r/r's bottom mounting hole: I cut a 1/4-20 flange bolt short enough that it wouldn't grind into the plastic fender behind the subframe, cut the bottom rear corner off the threaded draw bolt piece so it could clear the fender when pivoted up to grab the subframe securely, then loctited the threads and cinched it all up with stainless washers between the mounting bolts and the r/r: Roadstercycle's kit comes with finished battery cables. I asked for 11" battery cables, but Jack wisely recommended 12" lengths. I'm glad he did, because they fit like this [The nearest black and red cables in this photo are the leads from the new r/r and the red fixture on the left with two bumps on it is the 30amp circuit breaker that Jack builds into the kit]: Per the instructions, I taped off the now unused connector that ran from the wire harness to the old r/r and fastened it out of the way: The kit comes with 18" stator cables, solder-on sleeves, and crimp connectors - you choose whichever connector you prefer. I cut the stator cables to length using cable cutters. I like actual cable cutters for stranded cable because they capture the strands and compress them together so the strands don't get crushed and spread apart between the two blades of regular wire cutters or dikes. Next was to solder on the sleeves, followed by completely forgetting to take photos of the cables in my solder jig, but there's not much there to imagine. Roadstercycle has a good video on how to solder connectors. Just before heating the last piece of shrinkwrap onto the last finished stator connection, I remembered to take a photo: That's it. My final electrical readings are all the same - I didn't change out the stator or battery. I finally took battery readings with the engine running and got 13.3v at 1200rpm idle, 14.5v at 5000rpm.