Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Wadsworth, Ohio USA
Is it the original battery? Did you keep it charged this winter? I would get a hygrometer and check the battery. If it is 4 years old like the bike, I wouldn't be surprised if that was the problem.
Then again, another thing you can do is hook your multimeter up to the battery terminals, BEFORE you start the bike, and read the voltage. It should be around 12. Start the engine and read the voltage with it running. It should be around 13-14. It has to at least be higher than 12 to be charging the battery. If it is not higher than the battery voltage before you start, you are not charging. You may have to rev the engine SLIGHTLY when you take the reading, as the alternator may not be putting out much power at idle, though it should be enough to be more than or equal to the battery voltage. Revving the engine should put the alternator output to it's maximum and at least make the difference in voltage more noticeable.
The alternator provides all of the power to the bike when it is running. The battery is mostly for starting and "reserve" power when the bike is not running. I would think that if your lights continue to burn when the bike is running, but the battery just kind of dies over a few days and doesn't have enough power to start the engine, then it is probably a good candidate for a new battery, as it is most likely not holding a charge.
This is a problem I have not had yet on a bike, but all the time on aircraft and cars and lawnmowers, etc. Since you don't have an ammeter, and to install one would be more of a pain in the @$$ than it is worth, try the voltage game.
I'll never get over Macho Grande
Last edited by Bobas; 05-14-2002 at 10:21 PM.