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  #1  
Old 6 Jan 2011
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What do you do if your battery dies...

Theoretically --- if you're out in the middle of nowhere and you've managed to boil the battery dry what can be done to extricate yourself from the do-do..??

My LC4 has a rather large capacitor under the tank that is supposed to let it run without the battery, but ... I dunno fo'sho'

So - if your battery's cream-crackered how can you modify the electrics to get you home?

Greg
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  #2  
Old 6 Jan 2011
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Pour hot water over the battery, kill all lights and don't use the e-start.
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  #3  
Old 6 Jan 2011
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get a new and proper Gel-battery, fit it in advanced, before you do a trip, preventing it from going dry in the first place... the benefit is that you end up with a higher Amp that way which is an advantage.

depending on what model year your LC4 is... depending on size, a 2003 LC4 with plastic battery carrier would cope with a:
TECNO = YTZ10-S
L:150 x W:85 H:93 / 12volt - 8,6AH / 190A

a LC4 before 2003 like the 2002 with a steel battery carrier need a:
GEL.type: SHIM YO = YTX11-BS
L:150 x W:87 x H:105 / 12volt - 10Ah / 175A

the standard battery and size of a 2002 LC4 is
Std.size: L:152 x W:88 x H: 106 mm
Std.type: Hi-Q = YTX9-12BS/9-12B / 12volt - 8Ah
Varta = 50812

so, why not spending £50 quit, upgrading your LC4 before you run in to trouble... had a faulty acid battery one's which was unable to hold the charge, I was unable to start the bike, had to disconnect the head light just to make use of the little bit charge that was left and kick the bastard in to live to bring me home, road that way about 250Km, luckily it was summer and still daylight when I arrived.

originally my LC4 "used to be a 2002", but with a lot of mods, it's now on a stage of a 2003 upwards.. to be able to use the later type battery, I converted the battery carrier to the plastic one as well... now with all the options and benefits that come with the latest upgrades up to the 2005 LC4 bikes, did cost me only a few more quit.
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  #4  
Old 6 Jan 2011
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My battery was poor and died in central asia so I got in the habit of finding somewhere 'high up' to camp and then jump starting it every morning, I could cycle enough charge through it to keep the bike running but it woulod lose it all overnight. I had fitted a dash voltmeter because of ducatis reputation for electrics but all that did was tell me how shafted I was!

I had a magneto on an old triumph that worked fine, no battery required at all but I'm not sure how that would work on a newer bike
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  #5  
Old 6 Jan 2011
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Whither the kickstarter???

Whither the kickstarter???

I think that's almost the most important deciding factor on any bike I buy for long journeys to far-away places.

Other than that I think it's been answered.

Except:
carry jump leads - in the UK you can get them lighter and smaller than for cars, designed for motorbikes.
Before you depart, learn to bump-start your bike, especially on level ground (there's not always a hill). I find a lot of youngsters are completely unable to do this, but I'm lucky, having learnt to do it in the 60s when road-races started with a dead engine.
But you have to remove all the luggage and gizmos (well, I do), to make it as light as a 750 Norton!

Finally, I've only recently started using gel batteries (they're a bit new to me!) and have been told if you let them discharge a significant amount (maybe through an alarm) they won't last very long at all.
Anyone have any views on that?
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Old 6 Jan 2011
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Thanks for replies so far ...

Spooks, yes in an ideal world that's a solution, in fact my 400 has the battery from my old 950Adv 'S' in it right now...

But my question was kinda hypothetical... I was looking for an option for a battery eliminator, or something you could connect in place of the battery - which is what the capacitor does on my little Katy..

So - if the battery's buggered to the extent that it doesn't take charge will it still conduct electricity? What if you just junk the battery altogether - what potential damage could be done to other parts of the electrics? Crank, the LC4 has the kickstarter on the wrong side of the bike for some unfathomable reason and is a complete b!tch to start on the lever ...


I think Henry's solution is halfway there, but somewhat hill dependant!



G
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  #7  
Old 6 Jan 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by McCrankpin View Post
Finally, I've only recently started using gel batteries (they're a bit new to me!) and have been told if you let them discharge a significant amount (maybe through an alarm) they won't last very long at all.
Anyone have any views on that?
That's true.

When they start to get weak (for whatever reason) they don't take charge very well and die fast. I wouldn't used it for an extended trip in remote regions but I love it for my enduro-bike.
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  #8  
Old 6 Jan 2011
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Kickstarts are all too rare these days, people want the 'convenience' of just pushing a button instead of the obvious and less obvious benefits of a kickstart. By less obvious I mean that you can 'feel' how your engine is - the italians need caressing!

I'm in the process (a very very lengthy process) of building my 'dream' travel bike. It's got a 1985 ducati pantah bottom end and casings from a 650, complete with kickstart, but the cylinders and barrels from a mid 90's 750 monster and hopefully some aftermarket kehin 45mm carbs. Having the kickstart should be really really useful but I've already nearly snapped my ankle kicking over the old 650 engine so god knows if I'll even be able to start the engine with the larger capacity setup.

Inn theory I'll end up with a very sorted sub 200kgs (including extra tank and pannier racks etc) bike chucking out 85 odd HP with ohlins at the back and marzocchi at the front with ohlins internals. In about 4 years!
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  #9  
Old 6 Jan 2011
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It depends on your bikes electrical system.

My racing bike, must have a battery to power the computer or it won't start.

Other bikes will run off the magneto, they only need a capacitor to smooth out the voltage and filter out the peaks.
If this is the case, your capacitor parallel over the battery will enable you to run the bike without the battery and all light etc, off.

If you want to be sure, you could install a small backup battery, charged but isolated from the main battery.
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  #10  
Old 6 Jan 2011
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Agreed it is a shame that bikes don't come with a kickstart as well.

I have both on my Ural and it makes such a difference when your electric starter stops working for a year, and when you finaly strip it all down you find it was just sticky relay

Hypothetically speaking, of course...
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  #11  
Old 6 Jan 2011
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In ye olde days we used big capacitors as battery eliminators, and on the simple electrics of the day they worked ok. Lights etc were poor, but it ran. Magnetos sounded great, but as someone who had to fix the things - regularly - they were a long way from perfect. "Reliable" in those days was "anything over 500 miles without breaking down and stranding you in the middle of nowhere".

aside....
Did you know that 650 Triumph engines were rated as 30,000 miles before a complete rebuild?


Sadly most modern bikes won't start/run without a working battery. All the electronics need the juice nice and steady, and all the time. The good part is that they are generally VERY reliable, and rarely fail.

Remember that if you can't find a replacement battery that's just right, a small cheap car battery will work just fine. Strap it on the back somewhere with some big well-insulated leads and you're good to go. If your charging system isn't working a decent car battery will run a bike all day with ease.
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  #12  
Old 6 Jan 2011
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How many amps at 12V does one need to run a modern bike? Is it possible to use a solar charger, from which one can get about 0.4A at 12 V to run a bike (without lights, obviously) in which the battery has died?
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  #13  
Old 6 Jan 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Docsherlock View Post
How many amps at 12V does one need to run a modern bike? Is it possible to use a solar charger, from which one can get about 0.4A at 12 V to run a bike (without lights, obviously) in which the battery has died?
Without lights but with a functioning generator, it will run forever, even without solar chargers, but if the battery is disconnected you need a capacitor to filter out spikes that might kill your electronics and it could be very difficult to start the bike in the first place.
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  #14  
Old 7 Jan 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pbekkerh View Post
Without lights but with a functioning generator, it will run forever, even without solar chargers, but if the battery is disconnected you need a capacitor to filter out spikes that might kill your electronics and it could be very difficult to start the bike in the first place.
The question is, if the generator is dead, and therefore the battery too, if the battery is left in place to act as a capacitor, would the output from the solar charger run the bike without the lights on i.e. would it power the fuel pump, injectors, ecu and ignition system?
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  #15  
Old 7 Jan 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Docsherlock View Post
The question is, if the generator is dead, and therefore the battery too, if the battery is left in place to act as a capacitor, would the output from the solar charger run the bike without the lights on i.e. would it power the fuel pump, injectors, ecu and ignition system?
No, a solar panel of the size you describe is not able to keep the bike alive, not even the ignition.
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