Starting / charging problem '99 SS900 - Sportbike Forum: Sportbike Motorcycle Forums
 
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-03-2002, 06:12 AM Thread Starter
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Unhappy Starting / charging problem '99 SS900

Hi - I'm hoping someone here can shed some light on this for me.

On Sunday morning I went to start my '99 SS900ie and no go. She turned over, seemingly quite healthily, but would not fire up - didn't even seem to try, just the engine turning over and nothing else. I retried with no choke (even though it was only about 60 degrees) and no difference.
Went and fetched a friend and he helped me bump start her - she fired up right away.
About three hours later and after three stops and perfects starts, we stopped again for 15 minutes and tried to restart her again - same problem. Then as I persisted the engine began to turn over slower and slower. I left it for a minute or two in my confusion thinking the FI might have been flooded, (but in retrospect I cannot even remember hearing the firing sound) and then tried again.

She started fine.

For a long time (first year of ownership) I kept this bike plugged into the battery tender religiously between rides and never encountered any problem. I haven't done this for the last three or four months. Put her on it yesterday (after she failed to start yet again) and the red light stayed on for about 10 hours (charging).

Prior to connecting the tender, I checked the voltage across the battery before attempting to start yesterday - it was 13V - that seems healthy to me.

I've heard that regulator problems are pretty common with Ducatis but I'm not sure if that is what is wrong here.

Can anyone make sense of this?? I'd be grateful for any help.

Cheers, Bill (BamBam)


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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-05-2002, 10:41 AM
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Most likely if it is running fine otherwise it's the battery.

They don't last forever you know. If yours is original it is probably pushing 4 years old.

I had some starting issues with mine but it was entirely my fault for not riding it often enough. Now that I am riding regularly it has gotten better.

Can I assume you have checked the electrolyte level and spark plug condition? Laid a sparkplu on the head to see if it sparks?

The other possible culprit is a TPS adjustment problem or possibly a bad rectifier, starter, or coil. How is the bike running otherwise?

There are some things nobody needs in this world, and a bright red, hunchback, warp-speed 900cc café racer is one of them -- but I want one anyway, and on some days I actually believe I need one. That is why they are dangerous.
H.S.T.

Last edited by lucifer; 09-05-2002 at 10:45 AM.
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-05-2002, 10:43 AM
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1 more thing. Sometimes batteries will show proper voltage but just lack the strength to get the bike going. Does it do a good job of turning the starter over?

How is your idle? You might also have an idle mixture problem.

There are some things nobody needs in this world, and a bright red, hunchback, warp-speed 900cc café racer is one of them -- but I want one anyway, and on some days I actually believe I need one. That is why they are dangerous.
H.S.T.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-05-2002, 10:53 AM Thread Starter
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Cheers Lucifer... I appreciate your input - actually, no I haven't checked the state of the plugs yet. I'll be doing that tonight - I'll also check to see if the plug is getting a spark at all!! Haven't looked at the electrolyte level either - sealed unit I thought - maybe I'm going crazy though, I'll check that tonight also.
The battery is really struggling to turn the engine over after the first three or four revolutions...
The bike has alway run really smoothely, when moving at least - although it has crossed my mind that the idle speed was a bit low.
If it's a TPS issue, how would I identify that and is adjustment something a home-hack can attempt?

Some good has come of all this though - I have got off my lazy arse and ordered the Ducati Workshop Manual at last...

Cheers, Bill (BamBam)


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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-05-2002, 01:27 PM
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I will be doing the TPS thing as soon as my carb syncs get here. Probably weekend after next. So i'll let you know. My battery has caps and needed topping up with distilled H20 at 6000 miles.
I usually change sparkplugs at least every 6 months.
Probably totally unneccessary but i used to run street 2 strokes so I guess old habits die hard.

There are some things nobody needs in this world, and a bright red, hunchback, warp-speed 900cc café racer is one of them -- but I want one anyway, and on some days I actually believe I need one. That is why they are dangerous.
H.S.T.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-06-2002, 05:01 AM Thread Starter
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Well, yes - it seems I WAS going crazy. The stock battery is a YAUSA and not a sealed unit... AND - all the cells were well below the minimum level of electrolyte so I topped 'em off and have it on the Battery Tender to 'trickle charge' right now. Maybe this is the problem. Oh my god - you'd thing battery level would be the first thing I'd check heh??
I'll post the results here.
Gullp.. sorry guys.

Cheers, Bill (BamBam)


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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-06-2002, 09:32 PM Thread Starter
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Well... I topped the battery off with distilled water, left the unit on the battery tender for a day and...

BA-BOOM - fixed!!

She now starts up beautifully. I'm going riding!!

Thanks for the help mate.

Cheers, Bill (BamBam)


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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-09-2002, 08:42 AM
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Anytime.


There are some things nobody needs in this world, and a bright red, hunchback, warp-speed 900cc café racer is one of them -- but I want one anyway, and on some days I actually believe I need one. That is why they are dangerous.
H.S.T.
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