Weestrom Regulator set up?
Does anyone know what type of voltage regulator is fitted to the Wee and how it will react to a reduced load?
I’m looking at my options for heated kit, probably grips, a seat pad and a vest. There is a slight chance (with a pillion wearing the vest) that all three would be used together, giving enough load to start draining the battery.
The best solution would be to replace the headlight and tail light bulbs with LED’s, thus giving spare capacity when needed. However, in the back of my mind I have it that there are two type of regulators used on bikes and that the cheaper sort (shunt type?) doesn’t actually cut off any excess production, it just leaks it away via one of it’s own components. If this is the case, the excess when the heated kit is not in use will be bigger than the system designers envisaged. Would normal use (Summer) without the expected load heat/wear the VR faster or cause it to overcharge the battery?
I’d rather fit a three position switch that locks out the seat heat when the vest socket is on than fry a VR or battery.
Wee Regulator - heater power
Andy, it is the shunt type and it just dumps power to ground to bring the voltage down to the level required to charge the battery and supply the engine and lighting. This is the system used by almost all motorcycles (but not the new Triumph Explorer). I run heated grips and also heated liners for both myself and my wife. The Wee output is only 400 watts and even just the rider can overwhelm it. I installed LED taillight bulbs to gain 10 watts. That gives just enough power for one heated liner and grips both on high but it is marginal. When it gets cold and the wife is with me, I just pull the plug off of the right head light. It is easy to reach to take off and to replace, and that gives me an extra 55 watts or so. I also installed a digital volt meter down inside the right cowling that I can see while I ride so I can monitor it to make sure the voltage is not getting too low. I think you are correct that if you drop the load too low it could cause problems for the regulator. For sure it would run much hotter. Without the headlights it would have to dissipate around 100 or more additional watts all the time! Not good.
Try the "unplug one head light" trick. Works well for me. The only time is is an issue at all is when it is very cold, riding two up, and at night on dark roads. All at the same time. Then you have to chose.
Good idea on unplugging. I like things to be simple and easily put back to standard to aid fault finding. I might knock up a little blanking plug to keep it secure.
Looks like I'll just have to bother to dress properly and let the wife run her heated kit, it's not that often or that far.
There is (according to another forum) a kit to change fron a shunt type system, but I'm thinking expensive and a hassle to fit, so not worth it for the type of riding I do.
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