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XR400 "DC kit"

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Just ordered the "XR400 DC kit" from Ricky Stator.

 

http://www.rickystator.com/catalog/honda-xr400-charging-system-p-626.html

 

Should have it middle of next week and will post some install pics and a review once I get it working. I thought about getting individual pcs. to put something like it together but at the end of the day, it didn't look like the cost savings would be worth it for me. Buying a kit, you know all the pcs. will hook together with minimal fuss and you won't need 2 or 3 extra trips to the hardware store or get confused on wire colors and what should hook up where. Anyway, the XR4 adventure "lite" is coming together slow but steady!

 

 

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Uggggh!!!

 

Nothing "good" to report at this time. I installed the kit last Wednesday, install went fine and everything seemed to be working great. Went for a night ride and it worked beautifully,,,,,,, for about an hour. The RS DC kit comes with a switching reg / rec so when current stops coming from the stator (motor off), it flips an internal relay and shuts battery power off. This is great, no extra switch needed to turn off your tail light or cut power to your headlight switch.

 

Anyway,,, after approx. an hour of run time I was about 1/4 mile away from home, the lights went dim while going down the road. Probably about 30% of what they were. I pulled in, turned the bike off, waited for the relay to kick the system off then re-started. Everything worked like normal again, battery has a good charge. But now, when I start the bike and just run it in the garage, everything works but as soon as I take off to ride, they go dim again about 30 seconds down the road. When it was acting up, I left it running and took the seat off and checked voltage. It was only at like 7-8V when running. If I shut the bike off then start it again, I'm around 13.8V at idle and that jumps up to 14.4V at approx. 3-4,000 rpm. Basically, everything seems to work fine in the garage or until I actually plug something into the system and take off down the road. Ricky Stator will be sending me some parts to try out. I talked to the tech there for a while both Friday and Saturday and he has never heard of this issue before so he said the next step is to swap some parts out. I'm glad they are being very helpfull, I was a little scared I would just get told "it's your fault, sorry bout your luck". That was not the case, he told me they would help anyway they could wich was really good to hear.

 

Battery voltage has always been around 13.6 - 13.8 every time I check it and it doesn't seem to be bad but who knows, it may have an issue that only happens with vibration from riding.

 

I checked all connections about 3 or 4 times. The ground connects on the battery were a "little" loose but seemed tight enough they should have been fine. I tightened those up, scuffed up the tab where I grounded it to the frame and got the same result. No change at all.

 

I tried unplugging the stock harness from the switched lead on RR and running it straight from the battery +, same result.

 

I tried running just a headlight from the battery (nothing else plugged in), and from the switch lead, same result.

 

I tried a different bar switch on the light, same result.

 

I tried a new bulb, same result.

 

I ran a seperate hot and ground (new wires and connectors) straight to the light from battery, same result

 

I disconnected the frame ground from the battery and just ran a wire from the negative side direct to the light with nothing else. no change.

 

Hopefully a new RR or battery does the trick, I have changed everything it's hooked up to at least twice and it has never made a difference. I got pissed off Sunday night, pulled the plates off the XR and stuck 'em on the KTM so I could atleast go for a ride. I put the same kind of kit (from Trail Tech) on my KTM a couple years ago and that went well so I know I'm not way off track with my install. It's basically all the same parts. Hopefully the new stuff does it, I'm bumming out right now. Anyone ever experience this? OH ya, when it's acting up at idle the light are dimmer for sure but it gets worse as the rpms increase and my LED tail light will actually flicker like on AC power. I'm thinking the RR has something going on, I cant think of anything else to try.

Edited by michigan400

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I have a question for the electrical gurus here - 

 

I have RS high out put stator, wired for a single output (200W) to a Trail Tech RR with relay. 

 

According to the directions sent with the kit -

 

Green and White from stator (both greens / both whites already spliced together from RS) hook up to yellow and yellow on RR. Red and Black from RR hook to battery red and black. They also said to ground the battery to the frame and supplied a short wire with a ring terminal to do it with. This plugs into the same spot the RR does (double female bullet connector on battery)

 

Does this sound right so far???

 

I have seen posts on here that said to run all grounds JUST to the battery and not to use a frame ground. But, that was on a split system that also had an AC output for the headlight. Mine will be ALL DC power so do I need to use the frame ground or not? Does it matter?

 

I just got a different RR from RS and want to be extra sure it's not my screw up. Ultimately, I want to use the switched lead (red with yellow stripe) from the RR to power my stock wiring harness (plugged into white/yellow wire from old regulator that feeds the blue power wire to the lights). Do I need to run the ground (green wire under gas tank, bolted to frame by the ignition coil) for the stock harness to the battery or can I leave it hooked up to the frame as it is stock?

 

If you see my above posts, initially I left the harness grounded to the frame and also grounded the battery to the frame and everything worked for about an hour. I tried just running a single light hooked to ONLY the battery negative (frame ground removed) but it made no difference. I'm waiting for a call from RS but wanted to see what you guys thought. HELP PLEEEEEEASE!!

 

Here is a pic of the kit from RS website

http://www.rickystator.com/catalog/images/XR400DCCS.jpg

Edited by michigan400

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To fire the spark plug, the engine needs to be grounded, but don't you have a separate ignition winding on the stator for that?  I think your CDI remains AC.

 

The 250L has everything grounded to the frame but the CDI is also DC.  The whole system is grounded to the frame/engine. It has a three phase stator with three yellow wires.  

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Yes, the ignition is AC and plugs right in like stock. Bike starts and runs fine, but after about 30 seconds of riding the lights go dim and I only show about 5-7V where the RR and battery hook together with the bike running. I always have a charged battery in the system. I turn the bike off and the battery shows a full charge (13.5V). Start the bike again and the lights work fine (it then shows 13.8-14.5V at the same spot so battery is charging)  but take off down the road and they do the same thing in about 30 seconds. Dim to about 30% of what they were and even get a little dimmer with increased rpm's.

 

I guess my main concern and question is about the grounds. It acted the same way no matter if I had a frame ground or not. The last test I did was to remove the frame ground from the battery/RR connection, and just ground the light directly to the battery negative. I even changed the bar switch (and bulb) to a different one but it made no difference. I'm grasping at straws a little bit here. If this new RR does not work I'm at a complete loss as what to try next.

Edited by michigan400

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But now, when I start the bike and just run it in the garage, everything works but as soon as I take off to ride, they go dim again about 30 seconds down the road. When it was acting up, I left it running and took the seat off and checked voltage. It was only at like 7-8V when running. If I shut the bike off then start it again, I'm around 13.8V at idle and that jumps up to 14.4V at approx. 3-4,000 rpm. Basically, everything seems to work fine in the garage or until I actually plug something into the system and take off down the road. 

To me, these appear to be the key observations.  The question is, what is different when you ride the bike vs running it in the garage.  First guess would be a loose wire somewhere.  You stated earlier that the battery connections were a bit loose, and snugging them up yielded the same results.  Assume you re-checked the other connections?  Did you re-check the connections on the stator itself?  Have you tried 'jostling' the bike around a bit in the garage while testing the output?

 

Also, what does "until I actually plug something into the system" mean?  Is there something running on the road that isn't running in the garage?

 

Lastly, I'd suggest that it's a bad RR.  You might try disconnecting one of the 100w circuits from the stator and see if the RR can handle just 100w cleanly.  Of course you'd have to make sure all your high-power accessories are off.  Maybe run just the headlight if that's possible with your current wiring.  Not sure how else you would test the RR.

 

 

FYI, my battery is grounded to the frame.

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Also, what does "until I actually plug something into the system" mean?  Is there something running on the road that isn't running in the garage?

 

Lastly, I'd suggest that it's a bad RR.  You might try disconnecting one of the 100w circuits from the stator and see if the RR can handle just 100w cleanly.  Of course you'd have to make sure all your high-power accessories are off.  Maybe run just the headlight if that's possible with your current wiring.  Not sure how else you would test the RR.

 

 

FYI, my battery is grounded to the frame.

 

I tried running just the stator hooked up to the RR and battery with no lighting at all plugged in. Just so it would charge the battery and that's it. Doing that everything seemed to work but the only way to check was to go for a ride (with no effin lights), leave the bike running when I got back and then check the voltage. Doing that the voltage stayed up around 13.8 - 14.5V when reved up a little.

 

I plugged in just the headlight to the battery, with new wires ran, new bulb and new switch and it still did it. Works fine in the garage when running but take off and ride and boom, light dims out after about 30 seconds and voltage drops to around 7 or 8. To me, this says it's not a short in the harness or anything like that. Stator connections were all nice and tight.

 

I tried slapping the battery and wires around in the garage to get it to act up but had no luck. Put the seat on, bounced on it etc. and it worked fine. Go down the road and they dim about 30 seconds later. The whole kit worked great for about an hour after I installed it. I put about 30-40 miles on it with no troubles. I get almost back home and it does it for the 1st time and has done it ever since.

 

I mentioned to the RS tech that when it's acting up, the RR makes a buzzing noise. When in the garage and everything working correctly, it does not. He said that was the timer on the relay but why would the timer be active with the bike still running? I have what amounts to the exact same kit (Trail Tech KTM DC kit) on my KTM and it doesn't make that noise that I can tell anyway. Install on that kit went great and have had no issues at all.

 

The XR400 DC kit comes with the 2 100W outputs already spliced together. I'd have to hack up the wiring to try a split system and find a way to hook up the stock regulator again as well. I guess all I can do at this time is try the new RR and see if that does it. I was hoping somebody here would have had a similar experience or heard of it before.

 

Thanks for confirming the battery ground. 

Edited by michigan400

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Very odd indeed.  Mine RR doesn't buzz, but it's not the same model, so apples & oranges maybe.  Still think that's the likely culprit though.

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Very odd indeed.  Mine RR doesn't buzz, but it's not the same model, so apples & oranges maybe.  Still think that's the likely culprit though.

 

 

 

I'll try the new RR in a few hours after work and see what that gets me. I came to the same conclusion but it's nice to get it validated by someone else.  :thumbsup:

 

I REALLY hope that does it. Just before I installed the kit I transfered the plates from my KTM to the Honda and of course, a day later this happens!!  :facepalm:

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I think 14.5v is high.  Mine runs around 13.5v with a four pound battery.   Try hooking up more load such as lights and see if that helps.

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I think 14.5v is high.  Mine runs around 13.5v with a four pound battery.   Try hooking up more load such as lights and see if that helps.

 

 

I'll see what this new one puts out. I thought it might be also so I actually took a small screwdriver and turned down the adjustable voltage a little on the old one. No difference. Went from 13.8 - 14.2V at idle to around 13.5 - 14V at idle. I thought the battery might have got a full charge, turned off the charging circuit and somehow that made it go weird. I'm an electrical dumbass but I'm learning quickly with this!! LOL!

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I just installed a digital volt meter on my bike so I can see what is happening.  I wired it from each side of the keyed ignition switch with a SPDT switch so I can turn it on when the bike is off.  I highly recommend this to monitor any DC battery system.  I also installed a SPST switch on the headlight ground wire so I can turn the headlight off if I encounter charging problems.  

Voltmeter0733.jpg

Edited by Baja Rambler

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New one didn't help. Tech at RS said to wire just a bulb straight to battery, AGAIN, tried that and still does it. Gets dimmer with rpms and if I shut the bike off the light goes out!! It will come back on only if I unplug it from the battery and wait a little bit then plug it back in. I'm getting seriously pissed off and am considering going back to stock and asking for a refund. I dunno, maybe the battery is shit. :(

Edited by michigan400

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Some problems only show up under load.  It could be a short in the battery.  Try a different battery.  Also, you could test the stator under load with a light bulb.  If it's 200w then a 200w bulb.  I use a 60w on my three-phase stator to test each phase.   If the stator checks out.  Then disconnect the reg/rec from the harness and check its output with a volt meter.  I suspect the battery.  What type is it?

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It's the battery pack that comes with the kit. 3700 traitech battery like everyone uses on their xrs. Only other battery I have is in my ktm. No way to mount it on the xr and be able to ride it. Atleast not easily. Way to big to go under the seat. If I ask them for one, it'll be middle of next week before it shows up. I gotta step away from it for a few and collect myself.

Edited by michigan400

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Hang the KTM battery in a nylon sack.

That seems to be doing the trick!!! I strapped the ktm battery to the back fender and went about a mile and back with no dimming, no buzzing noise from the RR and that was with all my lights and harness plugged in to the switched lead like it should be with this kit. I'm gonna ride it around a couple more times to be certain but so far so good. Thanks for all the suggestions!! TT F'N RULES!! HAHA!

1401551841878.jpg

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New battery on it's way from RS! Itching to ride, hope it gets here soon.

 

I also ordered a used capacitor from a TRX450 off ebay for 15 bucks. Shoulda just done that in the 1st place!!

 

If this new battery is shit also at least I can plug that in and ride still. Taking a tip from Baja Rambler and am going to munt it up and have it ready to just plug in if the battery does go again. I don't trust the NIMH batteries now! LOL!

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Plugged in new trail tech battery and all the same bullshit starts again!! Within seconds of going down the road. Hopefully the capacitor works. That will show up tommorrow. I cant see how I can get 2 bad batteries in a row. It worked fine with my ktms glass mat battery.

Edit - hooked up the ktm battery again just to double check, everything worked perfect. If the capacitor works to, I'm sending both batteries back to Ricky Stator and they can shove em. Sorry to say but my experience with them has been terrible. I will say its trail tech who makes the 3700 mah nimh batteries and Ricky Stator that sells them. Screw it I'm trashing everyone. Their stuff is garbage.

Edited by michigan400

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