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1976 Honda TL250 no ignition/spark or bad coil?

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I recently bought a 76 Honda TL250 that didn’t have spark.  I have spent the last 4 weeks scouring the internet for info, calling and emailing several “vintage dirt bike” shops.  Nothing I have found or info Ive been given has helped so far.  


 


Little backstory about the bike so far:


 


The bike kicks over, has great compression and all the correct parts from what I can tell. (matching things up with partzilla and bike bandit schematics)  The bike was ridden the summer of 76 and then 77 and parked ever since.  The guy (friends father) I bought it from said the bike died on him the last time he rode it and it never started again.  


 


Here is a rough diagram of what the electrical wiring looks like:


 


 


 


                                             /—points


Magneto——black wire—— off ON off switch


                 \                           \—coil


                   \


                    \—yellow wire—nothing*


 


...and thats it.  that is alllllll the wires that are on the bike.  A grand total of 4.  The black wire from the magneto has a 3 way split and breaks off into the points, kill switch, and coil.


 


The problem I am having is; while kicking the bike over, after the coil is properly connected, the entire system grounds out and the test light does not light up.  When the coil is removed every connection up until the coil connection test out perfect.  Bright, clear, strong light as long as the bike is turning over by kicking it.  Once the coil is plugged in, there is an incredibly dull light at the connection before the coil and no spark after the coil.  I have tried both mounting the coil to the frame as well as holding the coil so it doesn’t ground out.  


 


I have searched and searched and cannot find a coil for this year, a superseded part number or another bike that the electronics were used on another model of those same years.


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I ended up ordering new points to see if they may be bad somehow.  They are only 20$ so its not a big deal if it doesnt fix it.  Thank you very much for that diagram, its going to come in very handy.  I just wish I could find a damn coil but everything has been cancelled for parts.  

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You should be able to convert this to XR185/200 cdi ignition for a reasonable price. The end of  the cams are the same and I'm pretty sure the cdi trigger and housing bolts onto a 250 head. Add the matching coil and wiring harness and you'll never have to sweat points again. If you use XR185 parts you don't need to change the ignition stator coil while the 200 stator or a rewind of the stocker may be required with 200 stuff. 185 ignition is 6 volt I think but 200 is 12 volt. For most all ignition info the TL250, XL250 and 350 are the same. I was working on collecting parts to build a TL250 with 185 ignition and XL350 engine when I found the TLR and just bailed on the whole project.

Edited by valvesrule
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Thank you a LOT for your suggestion!  Is there a certain year of XR that I would be looking for?  

You should be able to convert this to XR185/200 cdi ignition for a reasonable price. The end of  the cams are the same and I'm pretty sure the cdi trigger and housing bolts onto a 250 head. Add the matching coil and wiring harness and you'll never have to sweat points again. If you use XR185 parts you don't need to change the ignition stator coil while the 200 stator or a rewind of the stocker may be required with 200 stuff. 185 ignition is 6 volt I think but 200 is 12 volt. For most all ignition info the TL250, XL250 and 350 are the same. I was working on collecting parts to build a TL250 with 185 ignition and XL350 engine when I found the TLR and just bailed on the whole project.

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I think 79-83 XR185 would be the most compatible electrics. They are still 6V like the TL but with CDI. Other than CDI vs. points they're very similar. I recently converted my TLR200 to XR200 cam triggered cdi instead of the original crank trigger.

Edited by valvesrule

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Well I heard from the place that took a look at my electrical.  Only cost me 70$ to get the coil, wiring, condenser, point system, and stator all tested.  Came back that the stator is bad.  Anyone know of a like-model bike that would have used this same one, or where to source a good stator?  All the ones I find on ebay say no refunds and the status of the part is unknown.  Thanks for all those other comments as well guys, Ill be looking into maybe turning this into a little bar hopper for around town!

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Then depending on test results the stator has an internal short or a broken wire.  It can be rewound, pretty staight forward but tedious.  Do a search on stator rewind for more info, or contact some one like Ricky Stator to see if they will rewind your ignition stator.

 

Early eighties XR CDI conversion might be the best and as Valves said the early Honda systems are the easiest, couple of thoughts:

Early XR185/200s (thru 84) used stators with the same physical configuration as the TL.

But rotor IDs may be different, Honda likes to change dimension to prevent part interchange during manufacturing.

Crank tapers seem to be pretty standard on the all of the two valve ATC/XL/XR/185/200 engines except for the TLR200 which used a larger diameter taper. I don't know the size of the TL crank taper.

The references to 6volt vs 12volt are in regard to the lighting system, and 6v can be conveted to 12v via an 12v AC regulator and 12 volt bulbs. 

In the mid eighties Honda changed the ignition systems to a new style of using connector plugs instead of bullett connectors, and a different type of CDI boxes.  

So the issues are crank taper, rotor ID if you want to use XR stators with the TL rotor, stator mount to the side cover if you want later stator w/ the TL cover, or will later covers fit the TL engine.   If you use XR ignition then the you also need portions of the wiring harness, CDI module/coil, CDI sensor and advancer unit.

 

If the crank tapers are the same and the XR cover fit the TL then also consider the 86+ XR200 system; it has an 11oz heavier rotor than the early XRs and a robust ignition system, I put the late system on an early XR200R; great improvement in starting, idle, and light power. But you need everything for the conversion; wire harness, CDI sensor, CDI box, stator, rotor, and cover. All avail on ebay.

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