Jump to content

87 xl600 runs top then unexpectedly not?


Recommended Posts

This has been going on for months. I posted a thread months ago and have learned alot about OHMing things out and what a joy it is to remove the carbs, won't mention the air box but another 1/4 in. of room would have been nice Honda. I have an 87' and an 86' xl600r. The 87' is the bike with the electrical gremlin, it has 13,000 mi. on it and is all stock no snorkel and origional jetting. Some times when i get on she fires first kick and is full of power. There's also the inbetween where she still has power just not as much as she should. Then her third personality is big back fire then she shuts off. I can sometimes bump start her and usually have about 2 or three tries before we come to a halt. After that she will sometimes fire back up with a few kicks (or many more or not at all). She's quite the lady. Then when I'm pushing here home I get to my street and give her one more bump start and I do a half hour of wheelie practice in front of my house trying to simmulate the same condition and get her to die. That's when she decides to run tip top and I get home and scratch my head.😏 I have a Honda factory manual and am not new to working on motorcycles. Admittedly electrical components are my weekest link.

Ignition coil spec my 87' xl 600

primary 0.1-0.3 Omhs 0.8 Ohms

secondary 3.7-4.5 K Ohms 4.27 (without spark plug boot)

secondary 8.5-11.0 K Ohms 9.31

(with boot) on this one i can rarely even get it to read anything I have a new boot and will still get spark sometimes with out being able to get any reading. Any tips?

Alternator exciter coil 230-320 Ohms 243

Pulse generator 360-440 Ohms 379

The spec numbers are out of the Honda factory manual and the K stands for 1000 maybe those numbers will help someone else who doesn't have a manual.

My next move is to put the 86' cdi on my 87' and see if that helps. My only other ideas are loose wire or stator that has an issue when its hot. A few nights ago I had no spark and was trying to isolate the problem in my garage. I did see a slite bit of green corrosion on the top side of the two prong connecter that comes off the ignition were the key is. After unclipping that connecter and the one that goes to the kill switch and spraying with electrical cleaner i miraculously had spark and i thought I had it whipped. Road the next day and it died about 10 min. into ride, rite after the blue high beem indicater came on. High beem was not on. When it does that head light goes out. I tap on head light while riding and it comes on for a while then goes out. Also switched ignition coils with 86' xl and had same issue will end up buying a new coil at the very least but don't want to put it on until i find gremlin. If stator goes bad at certain temp may fry ignition coil? Could write more details but I've probably said more than enough. This is where i want to be 😏 Thanks for your time fellas. Some times runs for hours sometimes won't even start.

Edited by brother87xl600
would have put xl in title
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Expect the stator to fail sooner or later, but don't replace it if it tests to spec when at operating temp. Also be sure to test the pulse generator at operating temp. Both parts can test good when cold and bad when hot. Borrow the '86's CDI to rule that out as a problem.

Simply buying new parts in the "shotgun approach" always wastes time and money and does not always fix the problem.

secondary 8.5-11.0 K Ohms 9.31

(with boot) on this one i can rarely even get it to read anything I have a new boot and will still get spark sometimes with out being able to get any reading. Any tips?

This is suspicious to me. If you can't get a consistent reading with the plug boot and resistor installed, then something isn't right with the connection between the boot and wire.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Can always count on you for a solid reply HT. Will be a day two until I have time to toss the cdi on. Is there any way to test just the cdi or is it more like rule everything else out first then if you still have electrical issue its the cdi? Ac regulator and rectifier are not part of the equation right? Ac regulator just turns dc into ac to charge battery (which is charged). And rectifier is for signals and lights? One thing I didn't write in my post is the 3 prong plug for the head light is melted and burnt(black) on one of the prongs. Head light works most of the time but does not like rain.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Can always count on you for a solid reply HT. Will be a day two until I have time to toss the cdi on. Is there any way to test just the cdi or is it more like rule everything else out first then if you still have electrical issue its the cdi? Ac regulator and rectifier are not part of the equation right? Ac regulator just turns dc into ac to charge battery (which is charged). And rectifier is for signals and lights? One thing I didn't write in my post is the 3 prong plug for the head light is melted and burnt(black) on one of the prongs. Head light works most of the time but does not like rain.

er.. a lot of wires around the headlight area could cause shorts shutdowns sporadic running if they are burnt and shorting out..ie..kill switch,,ignition,,I'd be in there cleaning up and inspecting anything that appears burnt or semi melted as well as checking all the other wires that look ok..That's the obvious place to start...the rain thing is also a sign somethings amiss with the wiring/coil/cdi/ignition switch/kill switch.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1.) Is there any way to test just the cdi or is it more like rule everything else out first then if you still have electrical issue its the cdi?

2.) Ac regulator and rectifier are not part of the equation right? Ac regulator just turns dc into ac to charge battery (which is charged).

3.) And rectifier is for signals and lights? One thing I didn't write in my post is the 3 prong plug for the head light is melted and burnt(black) on one of the prongs. Head light works most of the time but does not like rain.

1.) There are some basic continuity checks that can be done on the CDI, but they will not reveal if any of the more sensitive integrated circuits inside are malfunctioning.

2.) Right; the CDI gets AC power directly from the exciter coils on the stator and not from the regulator/rectifier.

3.) I don't recall exactly, but I think the XL600 headlight and possibly tail lights run on regulated AC and that the rectifier is for the charging system. Some other electrical components share connections with the CDI, so it wouldn't be a bad idea to go over them as Horri said.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Did you check the exciter coil when the engine is hot? The resistance should go up when the stator is hot. If it goes down then that is a sign of a bad exciter coil. When mine went bad it read fine when cold.

Make sure that all the electrical connections for the ignition are clean and make good contact.

The XL has an AC headlight one one stator winding. There is another lower power winding for the DC side that runs all the other lighting and the horn.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Simply buying new parts in the "shotgun approach" always wastes time and money and does not always fix the problem.

In the case of these bikes I disagree in regard to electricals.

"If in doubt...turf it out" is my motto.

Despite the fact that you may not know exactly what caused the problem..at least you will have some spare parts for next time.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Those spare parts don't do any good if the problem wasn't fixed. I lost count of how many times I have read "I replaced the stator, CDI, and pulse gen and my bike still runs bad" followed later with "turns out it was the carb" or tight valves or a slipped cam chain or the gas was off or the kill switch malfunctioned or something.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Those spare parts don't do any good if the problem wasn't fixed. I lost count of how many times I have read "I replaced the stator, CDI, and pulse gen and my bike still runs bad" followed later with "turns out it was the carb" or tight valves or a slipped cam chain or the gas was off or the kill switch malfunctioned or something.

First you must determine if the fault is due to spark or fuel.

If it is spark(and this can be determined fairly easily) there are relatively few things it can be... and these are all cheap to replace. I believe these parts are destined to failure anyway.

People on here seem to be very skilled at fixing mechanical things but are easily daunted by simple electric probs.(understandable)

The ignition components are under high stress...replace them if in doubt.

I respect your opinion HT but I beg to differ on this point.😏

Link to comment
Share on other sites

road her tonight. Started right up and road her hard, hoisting the front and having fun in my neighbor hood that doesn't care about noise (will often fire up my 1970 DT250 which starts on the 3rd kick every time and play with at midnight i live in heaven). Headlight kept going out. Never died on me. From testing it I'm starting to hypothisise it's a short close to the ignition. Bad cdi and she would tell me to F off if i wanted to ride her like that?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Reply with:

×
×
  • Create New...