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Feb 13th 2018, 02:17 PM   #1
 paradox206's Avatar
 
  Jan 2016
  Des Moines

  M1200S, VFR800, XR650R & GSXR750
The refreshing of a Big Red Pig by a guy with no clue.



Well, my new to me BRP is making a mechanic out of me! It was operational when I bought it, but since this was going to be the bike that I finally wanted to learn how to really work on motorcycles with (not just oil changes) I started to tear into it after it stalled on me a couple times. Now there are pieces of it spread all across one of my garage bays.

First things first, drain the who knows how old gas and clean the filter/petcock. It has a Clarke tank on it and I got to learn about how those tanks don’t have a way for the gas to get from the left side to the right….well, unless you can pop a wheelie (I can’t) or you don’t mind putting it on its side. I like having a bigger tank, but I must say it’s an interesting design choice. At least it looks better than the Acerbis. There were some small blueish white crystals on the filter and settled at the bottom near the petcock, so tearing it all apart was worth it for cleaning purposes.

The next tasks were to rebuild the carb, do a valve adjustment and give it an oil change. The carb is currently in pieces waiting for parts (rebuild kit, air cut off valve and replacements for stripped screws), so that’s in a holding pattern. I was able to disassemble and then verify that I had the right jets, needle and clip position using this YouTube video while taking into consideration the mods on my bike. The valve job was my first attempt ever at one, but I’m fairly positive I got it right on my 3rd try (TDC verified with the stator cover off, all rockers loose, .008 exhaust / .006 intake). Finally, the oil change will have to wait until I can start it again.

So, that brings me to electrical. This is what I started with:



I thought about fixing it, but then the ghost of my electrical engineer step-dad visited me and told me to do it right, so I ripped all of this off the front of the bike and ordered a brand new Baja Designs dual sport kit (this one didn’t even support an H4 bulb). I also ditched the $9.99 special heated grips and disassembled the chopped up wiring that leads back to the KTM radiator fan. When I had the stator cover off I was able to verify that it has a Ricky stator installed, but until I get the new Baja Designs kit I won’t be totally sure if the owner before the last owner actually wired everything back to the Honda wiring harness correctly, or if additional re-wiring will be required (which will be 100% new territory for me).

And this recap leads me to my first (of probably many) questions for the forum. I need DC power to run my fan and I’m sure I’ll need it in the future when I get around to installing heated grips and a power port for a GPS. It’s my understanding that I’ll need to wire up a rectifier/regulator to two of the wires (green/white) from my stator to power things like my fan. I’m looking at the diagram from the Ricky stator website and it has a battery coming off the rectifier/regulator. Do I really need any sort of battery if I’m powering accessories off of a rectifier/regulator? And probably another dumb question; if I need a battery... for example this one...I only see two leads, so is the red/black wires coming off the rectifier/regulator and my wiring going to my accessories connecting to the same leads? I'm assuming yes, but I don't understand how that prevents surges (man I wish my step-dad was still around...).



More story-telling and pictures to follow as this noob mechanic gets his hands dirty and hopefully gets his bike running again without having to take it to a shop! My supermoto wheel kit and carb parts arrive tomorrow, Trail Tech rectifier/regulator on Thursday, Baja Designs kit on Friday and my RSW Racing fork brace should be here next week.
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Edited by paradox206 on Feb 13th 2018 at 04:44 PM
Feb 13th 2018, 06:11 PM   #2
 
  Apr 2016
  WA

Anything on the output of the regulator/rectifier should be ~12v DC.

If you were just using a regulator it would be ~12v AC. The rectifier is a full bridge rectifier that flips the negative swing of the AC to a positive swing. So you get bumps of +12v, then there is typically a smoothing cap and the battery to make the bumps a smooth +12v DC.
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Feb 14th 2018, 06:51 AM   #3
 Wrench's Avatar
 
  Jan 2016
  West Richland, WA

When I did mine a few years ago, I removed the original windings that were on a few poles and replaced them with windings that used every pole on the stator. I used larger wire and coated it lightly with epoxy. I think I have enough left on the roll I bought to wind another.

I'm pretty sure this is what I did (this quote is from THIS PAGE ):

Quote:
Hey,
Removing the stock lighting coil is CAKE. Just start pulling and unwrapping and it will come off with the wire. Clean the poles for any excess epoxy.

Those much smarter than I already figured out that the secret formula is in the # of winds. Over ten poles, you want 32-34 turns per pole, totalling 320-340 turns. Approximate output with 18 awg is ~125W, approx output with 16 awg is ~200W+.

I did the 16awg wind on mine ~340 turns total over 10 poles. I was scared so I upgraded the stock wiring that goes up to my BD reg/rec to 16 awg also. It was a TIGHT fit in the rubber grommet that fits in between the cases but I made it happen.

I have dually 55W headlights that both run all the time (110W), they are wired in series with the two yellow wires on my BD reg/rec. In other words, my headlights run on regulated AC voltage, so they run when the bike runs only. Everything else in my BD DSK works just as usual on DC voltage from the battery.

I would say the results are EXCELLENT, my dually 55's are like 98% bright at idle, and my battery is fine and the reg/rec never gets hot.
I ran a Trail Tech regulator/rectifier and ran everything on 12vdc instead of AC.

I also ran the Tusk wiring kit (comes with all LED tail lights and signal lights), and ran a BD headlight assembly with an LED headlight bulb installed. It worked awesome.
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Edited by Wrench on Feb 14th 2018 at 06:58 AM
Feb 14th 2018, 09:06 AM   #4
 PeteN95's Avatar
Moderator
 
  Jan 2016
  Muklilteo, WA

  Suzuki DL1000, Honda XR650R, KTM 250 XC-W
I think you'll want a battery unless you don't mind your lights going dim at idle. Something like the Trail Tech, but it is just 10 NiMH AA cells. You can buy those at Costco for $20 and put together your own pack. That is what I did.
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Feb 14th 2018, 04:31 PM   #5
 Wrench's Avatar
 
  Jan 2016
  West Richland, WA

Quote:
Originally Posted by paradox206


Well, my new to me BRP is making a mechanic out of me! It was operational when I bought it, but since this was going to be the bike that I finally wanted to learn how to really work on motorcycles with (not just oil changes) I started to tear into it after it stalled on me a couple times. Now there are pieces of it spread all across one of my garage bays.

First things first, drain the who knows how old gas and clean the filter/petcock. It has a Clarke tank on it and I got to learn about how those tanks donít have a way for the gas to get from the left side to the rightÖ.well, unless you can pop a wheelie (I canít) or you donít mind putting it on its side. I like having a bigger tank, but I must say itís an interesting design choice. At least it looks better than the Acerbis. There were some small blueish white crystals on the filter and settled at the bottom near the petcock, so tearing it all apart was worth it for cleaning purposes.

The next tasks were to rebuild the carb, do a valve adjustment and give it an oil change. The carb is currently in pieces waiting for parts (rebuild kit, air cut off valve and replacements for stripped screws), so thatís in a holding pattern. I was able to disassemble and then verify that I had the right jets, needle and clip position using this YouTube video while taking into consideration the mods on my bike. The valve job was my first attempt ever at one, but Iím fairly positive I got it right on my 3rd try (TDC verified with the stator cover off, all rockers loose, .008 exhaust / .006 intake). Finally, the oil change will have to wait until I can start it again.

So, that brings me to electrical. This is what I started with:



I thought about fixing it, but then the ghost of my electrical engineer step-dad visited me and told me to do it right, so I ripped all of this off the front of the bike and ordered a brand new Baja Designs dual sport kit (this one didnít even support an H4 bulb). I also ditched the $9.99 special heated grips and disassembled the chopped up wiring that leads back to the KTM radiator fan. When I had the stator cover off I was able to verify that it has a Ricky stator installed, but until I get the new Baja Designs kit I wonít be totally sure if the owner before the last owner actually wired everything back to the Honda wiring harness correctly, or if additional re-wiring will be required (which will be 100% new territory for me).

And this recap leads me to my first (of probably many) questions for the forum. I need DC power to run my fan and Iím sure Iíll need it in the future when I get around to installing heated grips and a power port for a GPS. Itís my understanding that Iíll need to wire up a rectifier/regulator to two of the wires (green/white) from my stator to power things like my fan. Iím looking at the diagram from the Ricky stator website and it has a battery coming off the rectifier/regulator. Do I really need any sort of battery if Iím powering accessories off of a rectifier/regulator? And probably another dumb question; if I need a battery... for example this one...I only see two leads, so is the red/black wires coming off the rectifier/regulator and my wiring going to my accessories connecting to the same leads? I'm assuming yes, but I don't understand how that prevents surges (man I wish my step-dad was still around...).



More story-telling and pictures to follow as this noob mechanic gets his hands dirty and hopefully gets his bike running again without having to take it to a shop! My supermoto wheel kit and carb parts arrive tomorrow, Trail Tech rectifier/regulator on Thursday, Baja Designs kit on Friday and my RSW Racing fork brace should be here next week.
After actually reading your entire original post, it seems your problem with the original setup is in the wiring.

-that regulator in the pic looks just like the Trail Tech reg/rec I had. Ordering another may not net anything. It is obvious it already had a DC circuit.
-I used an actual SLA battery, the smallest one Batteries Plus had on the shelf. Those look like NiCads, which dont last long on a bike. Batteries DO act as a filter in a 12vdc system, and thats a good thing.
-your original Ricky Stator should be fine. I'm willing to bet it wasnt wired right.
-I would eliminate any 12vac circuit and run it all DC, making sure you float the ground on the charge circuit. With LED bulbs, you NEED dc voltage and there is no advantage to running ac like there was in the past.
Feb 15th 2018, 10:58 AM   #6
 paradox206's Avatar
 
  Jan 2016
  Des Moines

  M1200S, VFR800, XR650R & GSXR750
Hi, All!

Thank you for the feedback. I finally found a USA wiring diagram for the xr650r and that answered a lot of my questions regarding the condition of the OEM harness. Indeed, it was not all running where it should have been (or not connected at all). There was also signs of heat/burning due to corrosion, so I eliminated those connections and soldered/heat wrapped them instead.

I got myself a battery...went the lazy/expensive route and got a Trail Tech one to go along with the rectifier I ordered. I was totally looking at those SLA batteries from Batteries Plus, so now I'm kinda kicking myself, but oh well. I'm going to keep it a mixture of AC/DC right now until I get the Baja Designs kit (which is designed for the OEM wiring scheme) but I might switch it all over to DC once I get the kit in my hands and see what I'm dealing with. In the meantime, I started creating individual fused wiring looms for each of my accessories (Vapor gauge/fan/charger) to make it easier to isolate problems.

The last of my carb parts arrived today, so tonight I get to re-assemble that and put it back on the bike. I also should get my brace today or tomorrow, so I'll put that on while I'm installing these...



I'm starting to feel better about things and more confident that I'll be able to get it fully functional without taking it to someone. Thanks again for the advice and examples from your own projects!
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Mar 14th 2018, 02:14 PM   #7
 paradox206's Avatar
 
  Jan 2016
  Des Moines

  M1200S, VFR800, XR650R & GSXR750
I finally have an update for y’all!! I think I have learned the hard way with every step of this refresh, but it has been satisfying wrenching on my bike in the garage every weekend instead of being lazy. Go get a beverage, because this post is a novel.

Let’s see here….I left off with getting the sumo setup, re-wiring and rebuilding of the carb. The re-wiring wasn’t too bad, though I wasn’t sure I had done it correctly (until I had SUB double check it for me). All of the wiring is now tidy and the new Baja Designs kit was super easy to install and works great, though it took some creativity to tuck everything without it looking like a rats nest.

Then there was the carb. The first rebuild kit I received was for a xr650l even though it said otherwise. I should have put things on hold and waited for new gaskets, but noooo. I slapped it all back together just to have gas start leaking everywhere…time to wait for the new gaskets. I decided to redirect my energies towards installing the sumo setup and all went well until I snapped two of the axle holder studs. I got the opportunity to order some more parts and learn how to fix those (also invest in good torque wrench). Thankfully, that gave me the time to think things through and I remembered that I should get new pads while I was at it. Once the parts arrived I was able to fix what I broke, replace the pads and get everything put back together correctly.

When I finally rebuilt the carb properly, I half buttoned everything up and gave the BRP its first kick….vrooom!! I turned it off thinking it might be a fluke, give it one kick and it started again. I probably did this 10 more times while testing out all of the electrical and was surprised how easy it was to start if you put it at TDC correctly. Even my neighbor came over, who had been snooping on me throughout the process, and he seemed shocked by how it was a one kick start. It was too good to be true!

Feeling good about my work, I put it all back together and was ready to go for a ride to warm things up for an oil change. I made it a few blocks and then I noticed the idle was rising. That should have been an indication to turn around, but I didn’t really know what it meant until later. I got about a mile away and the bike stalled and refused to start again. I got a ride home, came back with my trailer and put the XR back into my garage with my tail between my legs. I was defeated and decided to have a pro look at it.

Finding someone to look at my bike was easier said than done. The time of the year was one thing, but people just didn’t seem to want to work on a kick start bike. I got no response to a few emails and the shop closest to me couldn’t work on it due both of their techs having bad backs…”come back in a month”. I finally reached out farther from home and SUB happily took it in. I first told them that it was probably electrical, since I didn’t think the spark was all that good (after a new plug/coil), I had no faith in my wiring (even if it was clean) and I thought all was good carb wise after the rebuild. Well, SUB got back to me and said my electrical was fine, but I was getting no gas to the chamber. I thought I smelt gas, but I was incorrect. I thanked them for the diagnosis and took the bike back to try to fix it the rest of the way. I ordered a Precision Concepts choke plate to replace my OEM one with the flapper removed (by the previous owner, not via failure) and waited once again.

If you can tell by now, I’m not good at waiting. I had to be making progress somewhere, so when my front brake switch arrived before my choke plate I decided it was time to upgrade the front braking system and to replace the brake fluids in general. At the beginning of this saga I had ordered a front steel line, but was going to wait to do it later. I’ve never bleed a brake before, but I got myself a MityVac and dove on in. What I failed to get was an impact driver, because those screws holding on the cap were in there really well. I had PB Blaster from my stud replacement process, so I tried to soak those free too. Of course, the only time I wasn’t wearing my glasses, I sprayed the PB Blaster at an angle onto the master cylinder and that caused it to go splashing back into one of my eyes. 15 minutes of my eye under the faucet later, the PB Blaster and some hammering did the trick and I revealed brake fluid that looked like coffee. At least the rest of the process was fairly uneventful and an hour later I had a refreshed braking system and only a slightly sore right eye.

Since SUB said it was a fueling issue that meant it was time to remove the carb again. I went to remove the fuel line, like I had many times before, and it tore in half. I got the carb out and I knew fairly quickly what had gone wrong by the black particles around the needle…the line was going and had flaked off a bunch of crap into my freshly cleaned carb. I pulled off the float bowl and also found that my slow jet had come lose. I took the instructions to not over tighten it too literally and that was obviously causing issues too. I started soaking the jets and awaited the arrival of my new choke plate.

You’d think the boobery would be over by now, but oh no…I had more mistakes to make. The carb plate arrived and in my smoothness I dripped the thread locker onto the holes where the plate goes instead of on the screws themselves. The thread locker came out of the bottle much faster than expected and fouled up the carb and got into the choke spring assembly. I’m getting really good at tearing down a carb by now, so I quickly tore it apart, cleaned things up and properly mounted the choke plate. I also took this opportunity to replace the fuel line and rebuild the petcock (which also had signs of gasket failure). I got the carb installed, the rear subframe all tightened back up, but ran out of day light so I had to call it a night. Tomorrow was going to be the make or break day.

Yesterday morning before work I got the tank, fairings and seat back on. When I got to work I asked my boss if I could leave a few hours early to finish things up and he gladly approved, since he's been listening to my tales of woe from the very beginning. I got home, made a few final adjustments, added some fresh gas and crossed my fingers. Prime….one kick….nothing. I found TDC again….kick…and it’s alive!! I adjusted the choke and idle and it purred like it never had an issue to begin with. I took it for a spin and all seemed to be well. I finally got it up to operating temperature for only the second time since owning it and now it was due for an oil change.

By now I’ve watched the various xr650r oil change videos on YouTube too many times (I’m compulsive like that). I was all set with oil, a filter and tin foil (to avoid a mess). Of course, it wouldn’t be worth talking about unless something went wrong. So, I love my Baxley chock and use it all the time. This was one of the times I shouldn’t have used it though. Not thinking about proper draining (on the side stand), because all of my other bikes have drain plugs on the bottom and no skid plates, I removed the first oil drain bolt and instead of going into the oil pan it went into the oil pan and into the skid plate. I hadn’t figure out my failure point yet and proceeded to the next drain bolt. This drain bolt I didn’t realize was threaded differently and I tried to strip that out (until thankfully I tried the other direction). After making a mess there too, I move on to the oil filter and at least that went smoothly. After lots of oily rags and an Exxon sized slick later, I finally had a pig that was ready for a proper ride. Of course by now it was dark, cold and rainy out, so I only took it for a spin around the block, checked the oil level and called it a day.

So that’s my saga with many learning experiences. I didn’t ride it to work today, as I’d like to put more miles on it around my hood before taking it for a Seattle commute, but I think it’s finally stable. Next on the list of things to do is a trip to KFG to get it re-sprung for my weight, as it dives like a whale right now. My bank account is not very happy with me, but it’ll be worth it in the end. If you actually read all of this, you deserve a medal, or another drink. I have neither for you, so how about a picture of the final product!



And a couple other random things I've done are:
-Swapped the incandescent headlight bulb for an LED one.
-Cleaned the hell out of the inside of the gas tank.
-New chain/sprockets
-Vented the air box side panel, then figured it was too vented, sealed it up and then added needle sized hole for each of the holes seen above.
-Added the "batwing" mod to the airbox (since I was already buying everything that was available for the bike on eBay anyways...).
-Added a fork brace per PeteN95's suggestion.
-Bought some new graphics, but I haven't applied them yet (and I still need to hand perforate the ones for the tank...weee...).
-Got myself an AGV AX-8 helmet (on sale for 54% off) that matches the bike, because I gotta look cool while riding this thing!

Edited by paradox206 on Mar 16th 2018 at 12:53 PM
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