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Amp gauge question #411592
01/03/12 9:03 pm
01/03/12 9:03 pm
Joined: Aug 2001
Posts: 2,535
New Hampshier USA
MikeG Online content OP
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MikeG  Online Content OP
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New Hampshier USA
I want to add an amp gauge to my 71 Bonnie. On my BSA A10 all regulated power runs through the gauge before going to the lights and battery. Is this necessary or can I simply run a wire from the podtronics unit to the gauge and back to the battery? Will it show power consumption from lights ect without the lighting wiring passing thru it?
Thanks


1960 BSA A10
2007 Suzuki Bandit
1957 A10
(Used to be a Triumph here)
71 Norton Commando
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Re: Amp gauge question [Re: MikeG] #411609
01/03/12 10:13 pm
01/03/12 10:13 pm
Joined: Jan 2009
Posts: 323
Montana, USA
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Dr. Z Offline
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Mike,

A current meter operates by putting a break in the circuit, and the meter is connected into the break. So the meter only indicates the current through the wire it is connected to.


Craig Zaspel

T100R
BSA A10
Re: Amp gauge question [Re: MikeG] #411612
01/03/12 10:28 pm
01/03/12 10:28 pm
Joined: Aug 2001
Posts: 2,535
New Hampshier USA
MikeG Online content OP
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MikeG  Online Content OP
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OK-so if I ran a seperate wire from the regulator to the gauge and back to the battery all it would read is alternator output, any other load I put on the system would not show?


1960 BSA A10
2007 Suzuki Bandit
1957 A10
(Used to be a Triumph here)
71 Norton Commando
Re: Amp gauge question [Re: MikeG] #411644
01/04/12 2:02 am
01/04/12 2:02 am
Joined: Jun 2002
Posts: 9,471
Scotland
S
Stuart Online content
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Stuart  Online Content
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Hi Mike,

Originally Posted By: MikeG
I want to add an amp gauge to my 71 Bonnie.

You could do what Triumph did before the year of your bike.

If you study a '71 wiring diagram, you'll see the Brown/Blue cable connects battery, rectifier, Zener and ignition key switch.

Otoh, a '70 or earlier wiring diagram shows that Brown/Blue only connected the battery to one side of the ammeter; rectifier, Zener and ignition key switch were connected by Brown/White to the other side of the ammeter.

You've replaced rectifier and Zener with a Podtronics but the principles of a pre-'71 wiring diagram hold true - connect the battery to one side of the ammeter and the Podtronics output to the other side (and the ignition key switch); then the ammeter will show you draw from and charge into the battery.

Originally Posted By: MikeG
if I ran a seperate wire from the regulator to the gauge and back to the battery all it would read is alternator output, any other load I put on the system would not show?

No. As Craig has indicated, Amps are the units of electrical charge past a given point. So, if all you want to read is alternator output, the ammeter must go between the Podtronics DC output and the rest of the harness. In practice, this means you must run a cable from the Podtronics DC output to one side of the ammeter, then another cable from the other side of the ammeter back to where the harness originally connected to the Podtronics DC output.

Then what sort of gauge do you have in mind? Ime, the commonest ammeters for vehicle mounting tend to be around 2"/50mm dia. with about a 90-degree needle sweep, central zero so about 45 degrees either side to indicate the current direction. Otoh, if you want to measure just alternator/reg.-rect. output, you need a scale with needle on one side, with a much greater angular sweep, and/or a larger gauge diameter, to be able to see any detail on the move?

Hth.

Regards,

Last edited by Stuart; 01/04/12 2:29 am. Reason: Additional info.
Re: Amp gauge question [Re: MikeG] #411645
01/04/12 2:24 am
01/04/12 2:24 am
Joined: Apr 2005
Posts: 1,611
Mississauga, Ontario.
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Adam M. Online content
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I'd rather have a voltmeter in this place.
And I have it:)
Much more information about your charging and state of the battery.

Re: Amp gauge question [Re: Adam M.] #411649
01/04/12 3:09 am
01/04/12 3:09 am
Joined: Aug 2001
Posts: 2,535
New Hampshier USA
MikeG Online content OP
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MikeG  Online Content OP
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Originally Posted By: Adam M.
I'd rather have a voltmeter in this place.
And I have it:)
Much more information about your charging and state of the battery.


If I could find one to fit in place of the Lucas amp guage I would. My bike originally had a flat backed headlight with just a charge indicator lamp. Am switchimng it to an earlier type shell.


1960 BSA A10
2007 Suzuki Bandit
1957 A10
(Used to be a Triumph here)
71 Norton Commando
Re: Amp gauge question [Re: MikeG] #411654
01/04/12 3:45 am
01/04/12 3:45 am
Joined: Jun 2002
Posts: 9,471
Scotland
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Stuart Online content
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Stuart  Online Content
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Posts: 9,471
Scotland
Hi Mike,

Originally Posted By: Adam M.
voltmeter

Originally Posted By: MikeG
If I could find one to fit in place of the Lucas amp guage
Am switchimng it to an earlier type shell.

The headlamp shell hole is for a 2"-dia. ammeter. Standard size for automotive gauges. Loads of 2"-dia voltmeters out too there but beware of the 50mm-dia. ones; they don't fit in the 'ole so easily. frown

That said, much better even than a voltmeter is Al Osborn's LED Battery Status Monitor.

Hth.

Regards,

Re: Amp gauge question [Re: MikeG] #411984
01/06/12 4:35 am
01/06/12 4:35 am
Joined: Jul 2009
Posts: 3,549
Vic. Australia
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Pete R - R.I.P. Offline
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Pete R - R.I.P.  Offline
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Joined: Jul 2009
Posts: 3,549
Vic. Australia
Originally Posted By: MikeG
On my BSA A10 all regulated power runs through the gauge before going to the lights and battery.


No.The alternator output is connected to ignition switch and light switches,without having to go through the ammeter.

Only the battery and the horn are connected to the other side of the ammeter.

The battery only gets charged through the ammeter if the lights etc already have their share.
The battery only discharges through the ammeter if the alternator output isn't enough to run lights etc.

When the ammeter burns out,you only lose assistance from the battery (but the horn might still work from the battery).If you have a 2MC capacitor,you might not even notice until you slow down.Without the capacitor,the ignition timing will be out of phase with the alternator and you will notice;the bike might not run above idle without misfire.

You can run 6" of wire between the ammeter terminals for insurance.The ammeter will read about 1/2 as much,but it will still show if you have charge or discharge.The bike won't stop if the ammeter burns out.There's 1/2 as much current trying to burn it out.

If you don't like that idea,the voltmeter is good.Nothing stops if the voltmeter fails.

Re: Amp gauge question [Re: MikeG] #412025
01/06/12 1:34 pm
01/06/12 1:34 pm
Joined: Dec 2004
Posts: 9,082
Scotland
kommando Online content
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kommando  Online Content
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Posts: 9,082
Scotland
If I could find one to fit in place of the Lucas amp guage I would. My bike originally had a flat backed headlight with just a charge indicator lamp. Am switchimng it to an earlier type shell.

You can get an LED voltmeter that fits in an amp meter hole here

http://www.beckelektronika.nl/voltmeter.html



Moderated by  Alan_nc 


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