I'd take a different tact.
I prefer to test the charging system as a whole. Testing one component (like works with a burned out bulb) rarely works with battery
charging. There are 3 components to charging: voltage
, and Time on charge. I prefer to test these separately with analog meters.
should be in the 14.5V area at 3000+ RPM reading across the 2 battery
terminals. The current
is often what kills the deal, because it is wholly determined by what electrical accessorizes the owner has placed on his bike. Connecting a 0-10A DC ammeter in place of the main fuse should show something in the 4-5A range with the ALL
accessories and lights OFF
at 3000+ RPM. Second test with ALL accessories turned ON should also be in the positive range, but more reasonable 0.5 to 1A range.
By turning accessories OFF one by one, we often find that the charging current might pop into the acceptable (positive charge) zone. These systems are rather basic and I often find that owners install super bright headlamps, heated riding suits, fancy flashing rear lamps, bar-mounted GPS, phone chargers, etc and the electrical system simply can't handle it.
I know what you were promised when you bought the fancy charging system, but the meter doesn't lie
. If the charging current is not in the POSITIVE charging arena, then the battery
is being DISCHARGED because of too many electrical accessories. Remove those extra items from the bike !!Other common sense thoughts:
• A home charger cannot charge a dead battery
in 5 minutes. We all agree on that. But a surprising number of owners think that they can take a 5 minute ride down to the local pub and their battery
should be charged. NO WAY !
If it takes 2 hours to get a battery
recovered at home, then it will also take 2 hours of riding time at 3000+ RPM (without using the brake lamp, horn, or turn signals
) to charge the battery
on the road. If you live in-town and are constantly using the turn signals, brake lamps, and left idling at traffic stops, then YOU are the cause of the problem. You need to head out onto the open road at least once a week for extended times to charge the battery
. TIME on charge is often the most over-looked piece of charging information.
• You should be taking the main fuse out of the bike during any and ALL times the bike is sitting in the garage. That will stop any battery
drain while you are not riding.
• Nortons also have an Achilles Heel that other Brit bikes don't have: the Lucas 2MC.
After 40years the 2MC cap will not
be behaving the same as it did when it was new. As they age the 2MC turns from an electrolytic cap into a resistor. As such, it can discharge the battery
within hours. I highly advise you to disconnect the RED
wire (only) from the 2MC. Don't get fancy,
disconnect ONLY the RED
wire and put heat shrink over it so that it can never be re-connected.
Hope this helps.