Getting to know my new 5th Gen VFR's electrics...

Discussion in 'Mechanics Garage' started by VFRSW, Aug 13, 2022.

  1. VFRSW

    VFRSW New Member

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    Hello all,

    A new member here, having only owned a VFR for the past couple of weeks, so please forgive any daft questions or errors of forum etiquette!

    I've recently acquired my 2001 5th Gen VFR. It seems in lovely condition overall, however comes with no service history, or much of a handover from the previous owner at all, so I'm trying to suss out what exactly I have...

    Going by the few extras here and there, it's clearly been loved by a few of the 9 previous owners, and must have had at least a bit of work done on it.

    Last night the FI light began to flicker and fade, becoming more and more present as the ride went on and engine heated up. So, having consulted this forum, I set out to find and assess the orange earth box that often seems to be the cause...

    I have a few questions for those with experience in this field if I may:

    1. The orange box and joints seem visually ok, with only a slight patina on the 3rd and 4th slot. I'm no electrician - Could the minor patina seen in the 3rd and 4th 'slot' cause an issue? I've given it a good dose of contact cleaning spray for now, and will take it out for a test ride this eve to see whether this has resolved the issue. (Long term I will look to solder and earth them as suggested elsewhere in the forum).






    2. The box was open and exposed as shown. I've now taped it up. Will this cause further heat build up and therefore resistance?



    3. Whilst I had the fairing off, I photographed the R/R - there is no apparent model number on it to establish whether this is an upgraded, standard or original. Does anyone know based on appearance alone? (I've checked voltage, and all seems in order for now - just planning what may need changing down the line...)



    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. mello dude

    mello dude Member

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    9 previous owners? While you have the ground block apart, you may as well take care of it fully. .
    And then search for a thread called "the drill" and do a full charging system check.
     
  3. VFRSW

    VFRSW New Member

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    Thank you, will take a look at that thread this eve

    Yeah, 9 seemed a bit high at first to me too.... though excluding the chap before me (who had if for a few months due to a change of circs), it only averages out as 2.5 years each, and MOT records look nice and consistent
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2022
  4. raYzerman

    raYzerman Insider

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    I would have smeared contact paste or OxGard into the orange spider connector, but it looks to be in OK shape. Your R/R juding by the wires coming directly out of it means likely OEM. Check the connectors and make sure they are clean and tight..... until you can upgrade.
     
  5. VFRSW

    VFRSW New Member

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    Thank you - good to know in case I don't get around to soldering soon.

    I've just taken it out for a ride and cleaning the block seems to have resolved the FI flicker thankfully. Though I'll still look to get it soldered off sooner rather than later.

    I'm also planning on installing a voltmeter shortly - with this in mind, will there then be any urgency to change the R/R in the absence of any issues? From what I can read, the 2001 Gen 5 are wired slightly different and may be a bit more resilient to issues - I'm keen to keep my limited funds for jobs that need doing for now.
     
  6. raYzerman

    raYzerman Insider

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    IMHO, I wouldn't solder it unless I had to, just me. Voltmeter is an excellent idea. Just check your R/R and stator connections, clean and tight will be OK, Ox-Gard wouldn't hurt providing it doesn't bridge anything. Your voltmeter will give you warning signs if something deteriorates...
     
  7. VFRSW

    VFRSW New Member

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    Thank you both for your time and information, really appreciated.

    As someone else said on another thread, it's far more enjoyable owning the bike without that sinking feeling of there potentially being something unfixable wrong with it!
     
  8. skimad4x4

    skimad4x4 "Official" VFRWorld Greeter

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    Hi and Welcome to the Madhouse:Welcome:

    When you get time please add a post in the introductions section and tell us a bit about your riding history and your VFR and don't forget a photo or two.

    Sadly electric gremlins have dogged 5th gen VFR versions and hence some see it more a question of when rather than if problems will occur with VFRs prior to the most recent 7th and 8th gen models, so your idea of adding a volt meter could prove worthwhile.

    A typical cheap voltmeter from tBay which shows volts as numbers rather than a line of pretty lights, is idea even if they are rarely super accurate. Once fitted to an ignition on circuit it will allow you to quickly get a feel for what is normal, and then if you see volts drop or rise suddenly gives you a chance to head for someplace safe before the energy remaining in the battery is drained and you end up stranded at the roadside.

    As for whether it is important to tackle this 21 page thread may give you an idea of just how common electrical failures occur with these motorbikes.

    https://vfrworld.com/threads/how-to-fix-common-regulator-stator-failures.39277/

    Hopefully you will q:wheelie::wheelie::wheelie::wheelie::wheelie:uickly get the issues resolved and can enjoy some of the amazing riding weather currently in the UK.

    Take care ATGATT


    SkiMad
     
  9. mello dude

    mello dude Member

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    ^^^^^Adding to above....check post #9 for "the drill" charging system testing in the how-to-fix link...
     
  10. VFRSW

    VFRSW New Member

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    I'll post something in the intro section shortly.

    So... I've completed 'the drill' this evening...

    Figures-wise, from what I've read, the readings are in the correct ranges for the battery and the stator.

    The bad news however, it's that upon checking the reg to stator connection, there's clearly been a heat issue at some stage:



    I was going to solder the wires together, but I think if I'm going to do that, I may as well sort it properly and solder in a MOSFET reg at the same time.

    One thing I noticed is that the wires on the stator side are thinner than those on the reg side of the connection. Is this normal? I wasn't sure if the wires on the reg side were aftermarket?


    Lastly.... On the advice of a post elsewhere on the forum, I checked the top of the starter relay. Though there were no signs of corrosion, I wasn't sure if there was a connection missing from one of the 4 slots? Again, is this the norm?!



    Again, thank you all for your time and input. Really appreciated.
     
  11. mello dude

    mello dude Member

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    Your bike very much looks all OEM.......
     
  12. Grum

    Grum New Member

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    Completely normal. Your stator outputs 3 phase AC at around 50 to 75v on each wire, that is then rectified and reduced to 14v approx DC by the R/R.
    Higher Voltage means smaller gauge wire can be used to deliver the same power (Watts) requirement. A similar analogy is your domestic house power, relatively small looking transmission cables can power a whole city, that's because these power lines are Very High Voltage then transformed down to your local house AC voltage.
     
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2022
  13. Grum

    Grum New Member

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    Yes it's normal only 3 are used. Two wires are for the Starter Relay Coil and the heavier Red wire is from Main Fuse A 30amp to feed your Ignition Switch. You want to be sure the Red wire spade connection is clean and good, no signs of heat stress or melted wire insulation.
     

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    Last edited: Aug 14, 2022
  14. VFRSW

    VFRSW New Member

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    A great - one less thing to worry about! Thanks again
     
  15. VFRSW

    VFRSW New Member

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    Thanks Grum, makes complete sense.

    Any idea which guage to use to bridge the two when income to fusing them together?

    I'd assume the larger, though I'm not sure what it is. (Though hopefully the new RR will come with enough length)
     
  16. Grum

    Grum New Member

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    ???? Are you talking of how to join the Stator output wires to the R/R input wires?
    No doubt about it. That center Stator connection is heat stressed and not far from serious meltdown. The best option is to get rid of the white Stator Connector all together. Simply cut the three wires as close as possible from the rear of both, then neatly solder and sleeve or use good quality in-line splice connectors and sleeve. There is no polarity to worry about, just join a Stator Output wire with an R/R input wire by 3 times.
    Your R/R output plugs look OK as far as heat stress!



    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2022
  17. VFRSW

    VFRSW New Member

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    That's what I was thinking, thanks for confirming.

    My question re the gauge of the wire is that if there is insufficient wire to join the stator and RR wires together, and I need to add a wire bridge
     
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