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Discussion Starter #1
hello everyone! first post here! so glad i found this site because im stumped!

so i was out riding this past weekend with a bunch of friends, and left my hardwired gps on between rides. the battery seemed to be doing fine, but one time, after starting it with the easy button, i was driving, and all of a sudden my headlights dimmed. when i eventually came to a stop and put it in neutral, i noticed the following:

1. when i rev the engine, both the stock headlights, and the neutral light dim. but when i let it idle, and almost die, they get real bright.

2. i have a pair of headlights mounted to my handlebars which are directly wired to the battery(inline fuse). these do not dim or brighten regardless of the rev's.

3. at the battery i show 12.8 volts when off, as well as when on.

4. when it is off, the neutral light and stock headlights do not turn on.

5. when it is off, the direct wired headlights turn on and are as bright as ever.

i have a clymer manual on the way but i was hoping you guys would be able to suggest if its the stator, rectifier, battery, etc, or tell me some tests that i could do to find out for myself.

i really appreciate any help i can get from you guys, and hopefully i posted this in the correct place!

thanks!
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I am not a bike mechanic, but I've got a background in electronics, so I will make an educated guess.

It's definitely not the battery. It's more than likely the alternator or the stator or what ever it is on a bike that creates the juice. It might also be something in the charge circuit, but I'll have to look at my service manual schematic to see what is in there.

Little help, I know. But, the fact that the lights are dim UNTIL the engine almost dies, tells me when the engine is off or about to die the lights are getting the juice from the battery, so it aint the battery. When the engine is running, the voltage on the battery doesn't change, so it's not being charged. And, when the engine is running the lights dim, so something in the circuitry is not allowing power from the battery to the lights...and that might be by design because the battery shouldn't be in use when the bike is running, so that makes sense.
 

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I first of start by checking all my connections, than get yourself a manual and a multimeter. Start testing each component according to the manufacturers specs. In the manual is a testing procedure to help you with this as well as the ranges each component is supposed to be at. You will save some buck in the long run. good luck and keep us posted.


Welcome to the forums!! by the way
 

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Is it possible that you are pulling to much juice? The quads power output is set up to run the lights it comes with. You said that you have a GPS and additional lights hardwired to the quad...
 

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It's certainly possible, and one might be able to help diagnose the problem by disconnecting all the aftermarket stuff and then troubleshoot it from there.

If it's not charging the battery, then eventually the battery is going to die, duh, but why hasn't that happened yet...when it appears the battery isn't getting charged if the voltage doesn't increase while running.

Curious.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
thanks for all the good suggestions. i finally got a chance to dig into the quad.. the service manual arrived right after i posted the original question. turns out one of the 15A fuses next to the battery blew. according to the diagram in my manual, its the fuse between the battery and the regulator. which i hadnt even known about. thats a cheap enough fix!!

as for running all of the aftermarket items, i did check when the quad's charging system is up to snuff, and with all of the lights on, as well as the gps, it doesnt have enough juice to charge the quad at idle, but anything over a slight increase in rpm's, and it jumps up to nearly the same as it is with all of those items off. should i still be concerned? if i turn off the stock headlights(i wired in a switch so i can turn them off and still use the taillight), it charges at idle and at speed. in fact, since the aftermarket lights are halogen, they barely pull more of a draw than the stock incandescent headlights. but yeah, im no electrical expert. so maybe i should still be concerned?

thanks again for your help!
 

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I would just run my stock light until you actually need the others. if it comes up when you throttle up then chances are your fine. If you do use all your lighting then when ever you stop cwitch something off to keep the regulator happy.
 

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Without my morning coffee yet, I would say you should avoid running everything together. If you leave your aftermarket stuff on all the time, then just leave the stock headlight off unless you need it while riding. Seems to be the easiest solution. Might also be a good idea to get a bigger battery.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
yeah, i think my biggest problem was, just prior to it happening, me and a bunch of friends stopped, and i left my aftermarket lights on while the quad was off so we could inspect an issue with another quad. it started fine, but half way down the slope is when i noticed the neutral light flickering with the revs. i forgot that i also had my stock high beams on. this combination was probably the hardest i could be on the stock charging system with my current setup.

i think ill just start carrying a bunch of fuse's, and do my best to make sure i dont overly tax the charging system.
 
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