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Frustrating Electrical Charging Issue


By dwilliams - Posted on 22 June 2010

I'm trying to troubleshoot an electrical issue in my DRZ400.  Any advise would be apperciated.

This weekend camping outside of Idaho City my battery died in the DRZ.  I went into town to get a new battery, and was then curious as to rather it was just an old worn out battery, or my charging system was malfunctioning.  The new battery is putting out 12V DC when not connected to the bike.  When I connect it to the bike, and start the bike, I am still only getting 12V DC.  From what I have been told by the service depertment at Carls Cycles,  I should be getting between 13 - 15V DC when it is connected in order to properly charge the battery.  This leads me to beleive that I am only reading the 12V DC directly from the battery, and not 13 - 15V DC from the regulator/rectifier.

So...  I decide to try to troubleshoot the stator and RR.  The stator is pumping out around 70 - 80 AC volts to ground on all 3 leads when the engine is revved.  I am also reading around 10 Amps per lead into the regulator.  When I do a continuity test on the stator leads to the engine, I am getting continuity.  This made me think that one on the windings had burnt up and shorted to ground.  Several service guys and some folks on Thumper Talk have told me this means me stator is shot.  However, server other mechanics have told me that resistance to ground is normal...  I am completely lost on this!  The stator seems to be working as it is producing volts and amps, but it clearly has some resistance to ground.  An aftermarket stator manufacturor told me that the stator is bad and that I will get voltage and amperage untill I hook it to the RR and hook the RR to the battery.  He says that the RR actually grounds some of the legs of the stator, and until this happens I will read voltage and amperage, but after it goes into the RR it will then ground out and stop working...  This is very frustrating.  I am not sure if it is bad or not,  Anyone have any ideas?

Also, I have perfomed a diode test on the RR and it totally checks out.  When I unhook the load side (charging side) of the RR, I only read 1V DC.  The aftermarket stator guy told me I cannot test the voltage off of the RR unless it is hooked up to the battery or a capacitor.  Anyone know anything about this?  If that is the case, then when I hook load of the RR back up, I should read 13 - 15V DC off the battery, which I am not reading...  I only get 12V DC which I assume is strictly battery voltage.  I'm a bit lost.  I don't know if my DRZ is just charging at a low voltage, or if my stator or RR are bad.  Both parts are well over $100 from suzuki, so it's well worth my time to correctly diagnos the problem.

Anyone have any ideas here?  I'm hitting a wall.

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