Author Topic: Elec-trick-al  (Read 2910 times)

Offline wortluck

  • Valued Contributor
  • ****
  • Join Date: Jul 2015
  • Posts: 459
  • Karma: 2
  • Just ride!
Elec-trick-al
« on: 18.06. 2017 21:52 »
I love my bike, but the f*&^%%g electrics are driving me mad - this mad *pull hair out*

When it's stationary with the engine off, the lights and horn work - sometimes.  Occasionally, I switch the lights on and the headlamp takes a few seconds to come on - then main beam doesn't work.  Sometimes the horn and brake light work but the lights don't.  When all is on (when it decides to), I fire her up and a nice charge goes through the ammeter and all is well - until I rev her a bit then the ammeter goes dead (but the lights still work going brighter the higher the engine revs and much dimmer at tickover).  The battery seems ok as everything works well when it works well.  Have checked as much as I can and have put an extra earth in between the headlamp cowl and frame.  Just can't figure where I should be looking.  Have ordered another ammeter as the Wassell item I had previously fell apart - could this be the problem??

Help, or I'll have to pay a clever person to sort it out for me.

Yours Very Angry

Online duTch

  • Ricketty Rocketty Golden Flashback
  • Wise & Enlightened
  • *
  • Join Date: Oct 2011
  • Posts: 4502
  • Karma: 40
Re: Elec-trick-al
« Reply #1 on: 18.06. 2017 22:45 »

 Initially it sounds like loose connections, until  i arrive here;
Quote
...... I fire her up and a nice charge goes through the ammeter and all is well - until I rev her a bit then the ammeter goes dead (but the lights still work going brighter the higher the engine revs and much dimmer at tickover)......

.... depending which way it goes makes me wonder if the ammeter is wired backwards, and what do you mean by 'dead' ? If 'dead' is in the middle that's close to normal with lights on at revs, and if genny is charging properly.

 
Quote
... and have put an extra earth in between the headlamp cowl and frame...

 Waste of time I say, better to run it straight to the battery as with all earth wires.

 Is it +ve or-ve earth ?


Started building in about 1977/8 a on average '52 A10 -built from bits 'n pieces never resto intended -maybe 'personalised'
Have a '74 850T Moto Guzzi since '92-best thing I ever bought doesn't need a kickstart 'cos it bump starts sooooooooo(mostly) easy
Australia

Online a10gf

  • Wise & Enlightened
  • *
  • Join Date: Sep 2006
  • Posts: 2700
  • Karma: 42
  • West Coast, Norway & Alpes Maritimes, France
    • A10 GF
Re: Elec-trick-al
« Reply #2 on: 18.06. 2017 22:56 »
Got a multimeter to do some measurements ?

About the ammeter, you could short the 2 connections (you'll only lose the meter readout) and see if it makes any difference (probably not, but good for the elimination method), if everything works then it was the ammeter, if same problems then it's not caused by ammeter.

A10 GF '53 My A10 website
"Success only gets you a ticket to a much more difficult task"

Online beezermacc

  • Resident Legend
  • *****
  • Join Date: Dec 2011
  • Posts: 876
  • Karma: 35
  • Not for the purist!
    • Priory Magnetos Ltd.
Re: Elec-trick-al
« Reply #3 on: 18.06. 2017 23:10 »
In a situation like this, i.e. where everything seems utterly unpredictable I recommend a complete rebuild of the electrical system which shouldn't be as arduous as it sounds. The key is to treat the charging system and lighting system as different systems and not introduce them to each other until each works perfectly independently. First of all disconnect the lead which links the ammeter to the lighting switch - this divorces the two systems. Now build the charging system so that it works properly. Once you have achieved this, build the lighting system, but power it directly off the battery, putting power into the lighting switch via the pole which would normally be connected to the ammeter. The horn and rear brake are usually wired independently so you can forget about those until everything else works. When the charging system works and the lighting system works connect the two together via the link lead off the ammeter. That's what I do anyway.....

Yours, Very Calm! *whistle* this calm
Priory Magnetos Ltd - A10 spares, magneto and dynamo refurbs. www.priorymagnetos.co.uk

Online Greybeard

  • Jack of all trades; master of none.
  • Wise & Enlightened
  • *
  • Join Date: Feb 2011
  • Posts: 5677
  • Karma: 30
Re: Elec-trick-al
« Reply #4 on: 18.06. 2017 23:30 »
Might this problem be down to a dodgy light switch?. Try contact cleaner on the back of the switch.

Offline bobandbec

  • Moving Up
  • **
  • Join Date: Sep 2013
  • Posts: 65
  • Karma: 1
Re: Elec-trick-al
« Reply #5 on: 19.06. 2017 00:14 »
New loom would be my easy way out.
My A65 had unsolvable problems (for me!). A gentleman on ebay does looms made up with all connections and labelled to show what each connection is. Even I was able to wire it in. Touch wood no problems since. Shouldn't have said that should I.

Online mikeb

  • Valued Contributor
  • ****
  • Join Date: Dec 2014
  • Posts: 499
  • Karma: 9
Re: Elec-trick-al
« Reply #6 on: 19.06. 2017 00:28 »
sounds like some connection problems to me -  i'm assuming the vibration of the engine rattles things around. have a nice cup of tea (or stronger) and get systematic:
Quote
the ammeter goes dead
I don't really know what that means, but as its sounds like it charging ok then as a10gf says I'd short out the ammeter until other problems resolved. I'd start with wanting the lights and horn reliably working.
as Dutch says run that extra earth lead from the bulb's wiring (not the cowl) back to the battery earth (not the frame). and a separate wire from the battery earth to the frame.
then just wiggle around those awful lucas connectors and find one that stops the lights or horn from going. I hate those connectors as you can't see what's going on in them and they corrode and they break wires.
as greybeard says fill the light switch up with contact cleaner and operate it 100 times, also wiggle the wires going into it as those screws can losen. tho as the horn fails i'd assume its more likely earthing, as the horn live runs direct from the battery (doesn't go thru the ammeter) and earths via switch to bars.
its very unlikley but wires can break internally (this happened to a local club members' A65). agains, wiggle them. they are much more likely to corrode near the exposed ends and different metals of the connectors.
the good things about electricity is there's not that much that can actually go wrong, even when Joseph Lucas was involved (excluding magnetos that is).
New Zealand
'61 Super Rocket  - '47 B33 -  '18 Triumph Street Triple RS

Online Rex

  • Valued Contributor
  • ****
  • Join Date: Apr 2017
  • Posts: 473
  • Karma: 1
Re: Elec-trick-al
« Reply #7 on: 19.06. 2017 10:44 »
Nothing wrong with dear old Joe...more like the 50 years and 50 bodgers who've been involved since it was manufactured. ;)

Online cyclobutch

  • Wise & Enlightened
  • *
  • Join Date: Aug 2010
  • Posts: 1423
  • Karma: 14
Re: Elec-trick-al
« Reply #8 on: 19.06. 2017 12:23 »
Yeah, I must admit that I’m pretty hopeless (with electrics), but found mine very easy to deal with. Mine’s magneto ignition, and with the std 6v dynamo. I did have both of those units refurbed professionally whilst I was putting the bike back on the road. I just bought a cheap loom off ebay – and there isn’t really much to it. I re-soldered all of the crimped connectors at the outset. I’ve just got a cheap pattern matchbox style light/horn switch on the left bar, a cheapy ammeter from somewhere, and a cheap brake light switch (Bantam type?), and I swapped out the dodgy looking mechanical VR for a solid state unit. And it just works.

As people are saying here, the amount of issues you have it might well be best to start again. 
Various, including ...
'58 Iron Head Flash Bitza


Online Greybeard

  • Jack of all trades; master of none.
  • Wise & Enlightened
  • *
  • Join Date: Feb 2011
  • Posts: 5677
  • Karma: 30
Re: Elec-trick-al
« Reply #9 on: 19.06. 2017 15:39 »
Yup, I got a ready made loom that included earth returns, new, (pattern) light & dip switches and ammeter all from from Draganfly. Solid state DVR2 regulator. High capacity battery. Still on 6v lectrics.

Online duTch

  • Ricketty Rocketty Golden Flashback
  • Wise & Enlightened
  • *
  • Join Date: Oct 2011
  • Posts: 4502
  • Karma: 40
Re: Elec-trick-al
« Reply #10 on: 19.06. 2017 19:30 »
 I'll second GB's suggestion of lightswitch; I'd forgotten mine did similar-ish a couple of years ago....the replacement switch connections are slightly different, but it works.

 Another thing I just remembered that's also often overlooked is the earthing of the genny/dynamo. As standard it relies on a good contact between its' body and the crankcase cradle, but if that is not clean/or a bit corroded, may not do its stuff properly.
 The body of mine is missing some of the original plating and prone to corrosion, so I've added a wire to the internal earth screw where the field and brush tails join, and run it straight to the battery, with a connection to the engine case somewhere along the line....

 
Started building in about 1977/8 a on average '52 A10 -built from bits 'n pieces never resto intended -maybe 'personalised'
Have a '74 850T Moto Guzzi since '92-best thing I ever bought doesn't need a kickstart 'cos it bump starts sooooooooo(mostly) easy
Australia

Offline Topdad

  • bob hebdon
  • Wise & Enlightened
  • *
  • Join Date: May 2011
  • Posts: 2215
  • Karma: 32
  • l
Re: Elec-trick-al
« Reply #11 on: 20.06. 2017 12:27 »
 I have been very fortunate with electrics  in that I watched and helped  a family friend rewire my first bike many yrs ago , he incorporated more earth points as is now recommended and my present system was made up using those same techniques in 2001 when first on the road again since zero problems .I bought all my wire from a local auto elec  who once I explained what I was up to became even more helpful and even gave me enough  plastic sheath  for  the bike not original but it works and looks neat and tidy . Most important is time and a wiring diagram and you can do it for believe me I'm not a  great sparky.
" rules are made for the guidance of wise men and the blind obediance of fools"
United Kingdom

Offline wortluck

  • Valued Contributor
  • ****
  • Join Date: Jul 2015
  • Posts: 459
  • Karma: 2
  • Just ride!
Re: Elec-trick-al
« Reply #12 on: 22.06. 2017 20:10 »
Thanks everyone for your suggestions, would have replied sooner but the post notifications aren't arriving in my email as they should  *angry*  Will try the Notify me of replies box again.

Ok - bike is +ive earth.  What I mean is the ammeter shows the correct charge when the bike is started and no lights on (just above halfway).  With the lights on, the ammeter dips initially then returns to roughly halfway. When it's revved, the ammeter returns to the centre and will not move under charge and no lights, horn, brake light work. 

I know there is charge in the battery and that it's functioning correctly because, occasionally, everything works.  Sometimes nothing comes on and then, miraculously, after a few seconds, everything comes on again.

The bike had a brand new loom on rebuild.

I think I've got to pull it apart a bit to see if I can identify the problem - as most of you suggest.  It's just a bit of a tits up as I don't have an obvious starting point.

Thanks again folks - suggestions, advice and knowledge always welcome!!!

Online beezermacc

  • Resident Legend
  • *****
  • Join Date: Dec 2011
  • Posts: 876
  • Karma: 35
  • Not for the purist!
    • Priory Magnetos Ltd.
Re: Elec-trick-al
« Reply #13 on: 22.06. 2017 20:56 »
Starting point would be to isolate the lights from the charging system and get the charging system working reliably, IMHO
Priory Magnetos Ltd - A10 spares, magneto and dynamo refurbs. www.priorymagnetos.co.uk

Offline wortluck

  • Valued Contributor
  • ****
  • Join Date: Jul 2015
  • Posts: 459
  • Karma: 2
  • Just ride!
Re: Elec-trick-al
« Reply #14 on: 23.06. 2017 19:30 »
Update.....!!

Looked at the bike today and electrics were completely dead.  Disconnected ammeter and joined all ammeter wires together.  After a while tinkering, all the lights came back on, although I'm not sure why??  Fitted new ammeter and lights were still working - then everything went off again!!  Watched ammeter carefully and it fluttered slightly back and forth then all the lights came back on again.  Shorted out system deliberately to see if everything would come back on - ammeter did the same thing before lights came back on.  Started the engine and ammeter showed excellent charge, ran the engine for a minute then revved it hard.  Ammeter stopped showing a charge and wouldn't move either way even when lights were switched on and off.  Lights, horn and brake light all worked - brighter at high revs and dimmer at low revs.  Stopped engine, switched lights on and ammeter shows discharge as you'd expect, returning to middle when lights switched off.

One question arises from this is about the regulator, which is a modern 6v item.  Is there a switch inside the regulator which stops the charge to the battery if it goes too high or when the battery is fully charged?  Could the regulator be faulty in some way which could be part of the problems I'm experiencing?

Cheers all