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Strange Electrical Problem

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I have a weird electrical issue. I have a 2000 DRZ400 kick model with a street legal kit on it that I just picked up. The bike runs great, but the headlight, blinkers etc are dim.

 

Measuring ohms at the stator, all three phases check out at 0.5. Cool. My problem is that I only have 3 volts from the stator at idle when I should have like 16 right, and it only increases to about 5 volts with an increase of RPM.  This is consistant both idle and at rev for all 3 phases from the stator before the Reg. So I've found my problem and I'm pretty sure I need a new stator based on this test and information I've read on other forums, although it seems a little odd that all 3 phases test low and not just 1.

 

Here's the weird part. With the bike running, as soon as I unplug the 3 yellow power from the Reg, the bike shuts off. From what I understand, this shouldn't happen as the ignition goes straight to the CDI box right? So I had to do my stator voltage testing with it plugged in. My question is, could I have some sort of grounding/crossing of something between the power side and the ignition side bringing down the voltage from the stator, that would be a simple fix or is a new stator in my future? Wha would cause the link between the 2 sides of the system? Remember, this is the kick only model so no Rectifier, only Regulator. I tried to find someone else online with this problem but everyone seems to have the opposite problem where the bike will only run when the 3 yellow wires are unplugged and not the other way around like I have.

 

Thanks for any and all advice, professional opinions or otherwise help you can provide.

 

PS  I took the stator out for visual inspection and it appears ok. No fried coil posts or anything like I've seen others have. I also disconected the street kit just to rule out any interference from it. Also, when the street kit was put on, no small external battery was added so the entire system is supported from the bike.

Edited by dillydalley

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I think you answered your question in your last paragraph, as far as I know, you must have a battery

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That is correct.  A Kick start DRZ runs entirely off the stator.  For test purposes you can wire in a battery to run the motor so you can test the stator output disconnected with no load attached to it.  Replace the capacitor with a battery and it should run.  (stator wires to the CDI of course need to be attached)

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That is correct.  A Kick start DRZ runs entirely off the stator.  For test purposes you can wire in a battery to run the motor so you can test the stator output disconnected with no load attached to it.  Replace the capacitor with a battery and it should run.  (stator wires to the CDI of course need to be attached)

Ok, so because it's a kick model without a battery, it's normal for the engine to die when I unplug the 3 yellow power wires, is that right? And you're saying that I'm not getting accurate AC volt readings from the stator with it still plugged in to the Regulator?

 

Thanks guys

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it's normal for the engine to die when I unplug the 3 yellow power wires, is that right?------Yes


 


And you're saying that I'm not getting accurate AC volt readings from the stator with it still plugged in to the Regulator?------Right

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it's normal for the engine to die when I unplug the 3 yellow power wires, is that right?------Yes

 

And you're saying that I'm not getting accurate AC volt readings from the stator with it still plugged in to the Regulator?------Right

 

 

I just remembered that this drz kick only has a regulator and not a reg/rec so the entire system is AC. How to I connect a DC battery to an AC system for testing?

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Mmmmm, No.  Your KIck only DRZ has a regulator/rectifier and is all DC.  Not sure why Suzuki did it that way but they did.  You would not have a capacitor to smooth out the DC wave form if it was AC.

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Mmmmm, No. Your KIck only DRZ has a regulator/rectifier and is all DC. Not sure why Suzuki did it that way but they did. You would not have a capacitor to smooth out the DC wave form if it was AC.

Noble, you were right. Got a battery hooked up and my stator volts are spot on with the R/R disconnected. So I'm assuming now that R/R its bad, or is there more testing I need to do.

Thanks so much. You saved me from tearing into the stator because I couldn't find the capacitor. I ended up hooking the battery at the R/R plug.

Edited by dillydalley

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Well Noble, I just found your post on another thread about this topic and you're saying that the stator could still be bad?

 

your quote:

 

"Unfortunately you have discovered the most common failure of the stator. When the coils short to ground the stator is bad. Once you look at it you probably will find it is all burned looking. Oddly enough most of these grounded stators will pass the no load AC voltage test. That is because the ground is not in the test circuit. Once the stator is plugged in to the RR the AC and DC grounds are interconnected and a load is placed on the stator, it no longer works correctly."

 

Which might be ok because I'm hoping to be able to wind it myself and save money. I've successfully wound my 450x stator but that was single phase and this drz of course being 3 phase. But I've got the wire and I'm willing to give it a go. The thing is that my stator doesn't look burned like you referenced in this other post, so is there anything else it might be?

 

------

 

Ok, I just reread the DRZ400 FAQ page and I did mis the very first stator coil test. So I went out and checked all 3 yellow wires to ground and they all checked out. So now I'm back to being confused. According the the FAQ for electrical issues, my stator passes all 3 checks. I'm going to go out and do the R/R check now.

 

-----

 

So the rectifier checks out per the procedure. Man Noble, I don't know what to do. I see no discoloration or corrosion in any of the plugs wires and the stator and R/R seem to check out. I apologize for not going through the FAQ as thoroughly as I should have before I started posting my questions. It's gotta be frustrating having to repeat yourself over and over, but even after thoughly going through the steps, I'm back to my original problem of why am i only getting 3-5 volts from my stator when it's plugged into the R/R, unless I missed something?

 

Thanks for your help, and thanks for being the major contributor to the information in the FAQ.

Edited by dillydalley

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Just to verify what you said - None of the 3 yellow wires have an connection to ground, right? All 3 yellow wires are connected internally at about 1 ohm.  All 3 sets of yellow wires produce good AC voltage more or less the same.  Stator looks good visually.  Yes I'd say your stator is good.  There is 1 more test you can do as a double check.  Motor running, Yellow wires disconnected.  Test for AC voltage each yellow to ground.  There should be none. (you will see some low stray voltage that is insignificant.  But if you see 20, 30 or so AC volts, there is some sort of an unintentional connection (short) to ground.

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Just to verify what you said - None of the 3 yellow wires have an connection to ground, right? All 3 yellow wires are connected internally at about 1 ohm.  All 3 sets of yellow wires produce good AC voltage more or less the same.  Stator looks good visually.  Yes I'd say your stator is good.  There is 1 more test you can do as a double check.  Motor running, Yellow wires disconnected.  Test for AC voltage each yellow to ground.  There should be none. (you will see some low stray voltage that is insignificant.  But if you see 20, 30 or so AC volts, there is some sort of an unintentional connection (short) to ground.

 

Correct on verification. So i did that last test you suggested and I AM getting about 7 volts from each phase yellow to ground. And just to be sure I checked continuity and still get OL from all 3 yellow to ground. But somehow I'm getting some kind of connection when the motor is running.

Edited by dillydalley

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7 volts AC does not sound significant.  Is that at idle or the motor reved up a little? The Stator sounds fine to me.  You could repeat the test with a low wattage 6 volt light bulb (6 volt 5 watt) connected yellow to ground.  Probably will not even glow.

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7 volts AC does not sound significant.  Is that at idle or the motor reved up a little? The Stator sounds fine to me.  You could repeat the test with a low wattage 6 volt light bulb (6 volt 5 watt) connected yellow to ground.  Probably will not even glow.

 

ok, i think i had my meter on DC volt reading instead of AC because now I'm getting 16 volts from each yellow to ground. This is at idle. I'm also wondering if the stator that's in it is even OEM? Do you know if there's a way to check?

Edited by dillydalley

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I do not know a way to verify original, replacement or aftermarket stator.  They all look alike.  16 volts AC does sound like a lot.  I have never done this test with a good stator so I don't have a real answer but 16 volts does sound like a lot when there should not be any.  I might try this test myself tomorrow.

 

Go ahead an hook up a light bulb (1156) yellow to ground and see what happens when you put a load on that power.

Edited by Noble

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Ok Noble,

 

Sorry it's been a few days. hooked up an 1157 and no light from yellow to ground. Also, to try and isolate the system, I had R/R connected to the stator only with the DC side NOT connected to the rest of the bike and the voltage was back to being low.

 

Now my confession. Out of frustration and figuring my problem had the be the stator, I rewound it. The good news is the rewind was successful.  The bad news is it didn't fix my problem, although my yellow to ground volts dropped from 16 to about 10. But I think I may have wound it too much. I used 18awg wire and I'm getting 20 volts at idle now and I noticed that the R/R gets pretty warm just at idle when connected to the stator with the DC side not connected.

 

Noble..... what do I do sir?

 

----------

 

So I decided to broaden my searching to the S and SM models and found a lot of folks with my similar problems. I now know why the R/R was getting hot as it was taking all the load from the stator with the DC side unplugged. It sounds like I need to do the "Free Power Mod" to maybe fix my problem even though I don't have a battery, and report back to you. I'm assuming though that instead of ring terminals I'd just either bypass the OEM plug hard wire style or replace with a better plug.

 

And I'd also like to know your opinion on the possibility of over-winding my stator. I definitely don't want to pop the R/R from too much wattage.

Edited by dillydalley

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The RR really likes to be connected to a load to test output.  The alternator (stator and  rotating magnets) is going to produce power just based on the physics.  The job of the RR is to regulate.  When it sees power coming in and no load to use the power it shunts all power back to the generation coils.  Only test the voltage out of the RR when connected to a battery or capacitor or a load of some kind.  The low voltage you see on your meter is probably because your meter can not keep up with the RR shunting power.

 

What happens when you connect the RR to a battery and test voltage at the battery?  Next connect the RR to a capacitor (it will smooth the output and keep the RR happy) and to a 55 watt load and check voltage.  Connect the ignition to a battery to run the motor.

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It works. I should have put a load on it after the stator rewind and checked it because now I don't know if out was that or the free power mod. But I did the free power mod, except in my case not having a battery, I cut out the oem connector and soldered a good RC car battery connector on its place. When I plugged in the 55 watt headlight, it lit up as it should and all is well. My guess is my stator was fine from the start and the problem was the plug.

Do you have any thoughts on the possibility of over-winding my stator and potentially damaging the R/R?

Thanks so much for your help on this and I appreciate your patience with me.

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Do you have any thoughts on the possibility of over-winding my stator and potentially damaging the R/R?--------RR is robust and will handle at least 200 watts from the E/S/SM stator.  Your kicker stator is 150 W.  I would be more concerned about the life expectancy of your rewinding job. Seems like that would not be much of a problem for you.  Well done.

 
Edited by Noble

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Well Noble,

 

I celebrated too soon. My apologies for the victory assumption. the headlight looked bright so I didn't even measure actual volts when I thought I'd fixed the problem. But, I still have my original problem. With headlight connected I'm measuring about 5 volts. So I was thinking wiring connections somewhere in the line had to be blame so I setup my battery connection to the bike and the DC unplugged from R/R and a 12v auto tail light bulb as the only source of draw on the R/R, I measure a little less than 2 volts, so this rules out any line wiring on bike right as I should be getting 12v to that bulb?

 

Now for the weird. When I had everything connected, the headlight would brighten a bit when I both hit the horn and also when I lit the brake light. So it seems like the voltage regulation could be the culprit because it appears that when more load is added to the bike, the voltage increases ex... 2v - with a single bulb, 5v - with a more power hungry headlight, and headlight brightening when horn or brake light load is added.

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