Not charging

Electrical issues
Forum rules
Please do not start new topics here, but here: New Panhead and Flathead topics
Post Reply
Posts: 62
Joined: Sat Jul 14, 2007 9:38 am

Not charging


Post by dirtpandan58 » Sun Feb 15, 2004 7:08 am

Description: I guess it is not charging or the regulater (solid state) is not working.

I was ridin' home from about 25 miles out. About half way home the thing startes runnin' bad only to get worse as I went. I shut off the lights and it started running good. After about 5 miles I turned the lights back on and it ran good the rest of the way home.

Next time out I didn't go to far, just to see what would happen.
(Hopin' she fixed herself,,,You know what I mean.) Well she didn't. I pulled up behind a car and noticed that there was no headlight reflection on the car. I switched my brights on and could see a good reflection.(this was daytime) I switched back down to low beam and still had good light. When I got home I had no light at all. I shut her down and let her set for about 5 mins.. Turned on the light and it was about half way up, so I know the battery is good.
I was told it could be the ignition switch so I put a new one on. I ran it for awhile letting it warm up with the lights on and they started getting dim.
So I guess it's not charging or the regulater (solid state) isn't working. What puzzels me is the light staying on after switching to high and back to low.
Any Ideas?

Can I test the gen. from A to ground to bypass the regulator to see if it's the gen. or reg. that's bad?

Posts: 158
Joined: Fri Mar 19, 2004 3:35 am
Location: Maine USA

Re: Not charging


Post by haggis » Sun Feb 15, 2004 3:33 pm

Sounds to me like a bad connection ,checkthem all from Battery forward, including the ground strap ...everything nice and clean and tight? haggis

Posts: 369
Joined: Sat Jun 19, 2004 2:58 am

Re: Not charging


Post by kell » Sun Feb 15, 2004 6:48 pm

Haggis' suggestion makes sense. Then you might want to check the generator and regulator if you don't find anything wrong with the connections.
"Can I test the gen. from A to ground to bypass the regulator to see if it's the gen. or reg. that's bad?" With a bad regulator, you won't get any power out of the A terminal. Disconnect the regulator. Short the F terminal to ground with a jumper. That will make the generator go to its full output. You would put your test load from A terminal to ground. Or you could just hook your bike's wiring to the A terminal and run it. If your generator's good you will be putting mucho watts into your battery, ignition and lights that way when you really get the engine revving up -- even with that antique electrical equipment, but testing it briefly won't hurt the battery or points.
There's another trick somebody on the board mentioned, I think it was Sidecar. Put a bulb (#47?) between the F terminal and ground. This should limit the amount of current going through the field coils, serving as kind of a crude regulator. Disclaimer: haven't tried it myself.

Posts: 62
Joined: Sat Jul 14, 2007 9:38 am

Re: Not charging


Post by dirtpandan58 » Mon Feb 16, 2004 7:53 am

I checked all the wiring and it all looks good.

I'll try unhooking the regulator and testing from the A terminal tomorrow. I have a Mallory unilite ignition so I don't know if hooking wiring to the A terminal would hurt it or not.
I tested with a continuity tester between the two posts and from each one seperatly to ground with the regulator ( CCI solid state) and had continuity between everything.
I don't know if that makes ant difference or not. Just thought i would throw that in there.

Thanks to both of you for the replies,

Sorry, I meant to say with regulator still hooked up.

Posts: 82
Joined: Sat Jul 29, 2006 1:11 pm
Bikes: .
Location: Halsingland, Sweden

Re: Not charging


Post by dereborn » Mon Feb 16, 2004 12:15 pm

Here's the old -"don't forget the obvious"- input;
I'm just today replacing the brushes and cleaning the surface of the commutator of my genny. ..
Had the same problems happening at the end of summer, and I'm pretty convinced this was the source of the problem. Brushes worn down and contact surface dirty.

Good luck!

Posts: 62
Joined: Sat Jul 14, 2007 9:38 am

Re: Not charging


Post by dirtpandan58 » Tue Feb 17, 2004 3:34 am

Thaks for all the help guys. I did some testin' like ya'all said to do and couldn't come up with anything.
So I took it down to shop and let them check it.Just like I thought ,, it wasn't gennin'.
He took the generator apart and put the armiture on a growler and said it was bad.
He could have rebuilt the gen. for about $75.00 less than the price of a new one with the solid state reg. built on to the end. So I just went ahead and put the new one on.
Later on I'll get the old one rebuilt and have a spare settin' on the shelf.
Thank again for all the input,

Post Reply

Return to “Electrical”