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Discussion Starter #1
Here's the story: Replaced the stator -- bike (VN900 classic) started fine, but with lots of extra noise - grumbling, almost grinding noise at the front of the motor -- went for a 10k test ride, lots of power and responsiveness -- got back, still lots of noise -- unplugged the regulator/rectifier and started the motor, NO MORE GRUMBLING NOISE?? -- plugged reg/rec back in, noise is back -- took the whole thing apart again and pulled out the stator, ran the motor for a couple seconds, with and without the reg/rec plugged in and no noise either way.

I think this isolates the noise to the generator/stator. I see no bare wires, no shorts anywhere. So here are my questions;

- the rotor has a slight bit of play in and out - very slight - could that be a problem?

- the connection plug that Rickstator sent for the 3 white wires coming out of the stator seemed really loose and open - can shorting happen there (outside the oil chamber)? Should these connections be soldered?

- There was no simple way to determine which white wire from the new stator was to be connected to which white wire in the wiring harness; they are all the same. Does it matter? If so, how does one decide what the match is?

I know there a lots of posts on stator issues. I couldn't find answers to these questions. Here's hoping someone can help.
 

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the loose connection could be an issue,but can't say for sure,sorry.I have come to learn that going oem on alot of parts(electrical,brakes,etc) is best. When my stator went out my mechanic said to get nothing but an oem replacement,others may argue this but he has never steered me wrong in the padt.Good luck in finding the problem/solution.
 

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I don't believe it matters which white goes where, but Rick's stator instructions say to soldered the connections.... not sure if a short would cause there to be any noise coming from the front of the engine....
 

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I don't believe it matters which white goes where, but Rick's stator instructions say to soldered the connections.... not sure if a short would cause there to be any noise coming from the front of the engine....
Don't worry about phasing the three white wires. The connections need to be soldered and well insulated. Black electrical tape followed by heat shrink.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Is the charging voltage correct?
I don't know exactly what you are asking me. So, I'll describe the situation so that you can let me know how to get you the info you need.

- the stator is out of the motorcycle - I tested the oms on the end of the 3 white wires coming out of the stator - all of them read .7 with the digital meter set to 200. Any of the white wires to ground read "1" (nothing happens on the meter so I assume that is infinity).

- the battery has been on a trickle charge - it tested at 13.56 v. with the meter set at 20. Because the motorcycle died after a 10k ride I am assuming that no charging was happening at all during that ride. Is that a reasonable assumption?

- are their any tests I can do now before I put the stator back in and put the bike back together? Or can I put it together partially and test something? Dealing with sealing up the gasket and putting oil back in is a big hassle if it all needs to come apart again.

Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Don't worry about phasing the three white wires. The connections need to be soldered and well insulated. Black electrical tape followed by heat shrink.
Actually, the stator from Rick's came with a little bag with 3 male and 3 female connectors and a plastic plug case to install them into. I pinched the connectors over the bare wires, pushed them into their plug cases and plugged them together.

Are you saying I need to take that apart, solder everything together, wrap it and then heat shrink it? Can you imagine how the provided connection would not allow a charge to go through? or how it could result in so much racket in the front of the engine?

Thanks.
 

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Actually, the stator from Rick's came with a little bag with 3 male and 3 female connectors and a plastic plug case to install them into. I pinched the connectors over the bare wires, pushed them into their plug cases and plugged them together.

Are you saying I need to take that apart, solder everything together, wrap it and then heat shrink it? Can you imagine how the provided connection would not allow a charge to go through? or how it could result in so much racket in the front of the engine?

Thanks.
The Rick's stator sitting on my shelf did not come with any plug-in connectors but let's assume they are the type that require the wire ends to be stripped, and then crimped, to make a good mechanical connection. The use of a crimping tool built for the purpose is almost manditory. Using a pliers just won't work. Now there's the male-female connection that could be loose and causing the 3 phase alternator to single phase. This plays hell on your whole charging system. Eliminate nine potential problems and solder the connections would be my choice. The fact that disconnecting the rectifer/regulator stopped the noise is proof to me that the noise is not a mechanical problem resulting from your installation. Motors, generators and alternators make a lot of noise due to the harmonics during normal operation. When something is malfunctioning the noise can easily sound like a mechanical problem.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
So, put Ricks stator back into the bike (the gasket cleaning is the worst part of the job). Soldered the three white wires together - heat sealed - wrapped with black electrical tape - finished the assembly - replaced the oil and filter. Then, started the bike and NOTHING HAS CHANGED!

Run the bike without the reg/rec - fine. Plug in the reg/rec while running and the RACKET is crazy!

Digital multi-tester, on the battery terminals:
motorcycle not running: 12.83 v
idle, no reg/rec: 12.43 v
idle, reg/rec: 11.12 v

What's my next step? more tests? to the dealer?
 

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So, put Ricks stator back into the bike (the gasket cleaning is the worst part of the job). Soldered the three white wires together - heat sealed - wrapped with black electrical tape - finished the assembly - replaced the oil and filter. Then, started the bike and NOTHING HAS CHANGED!

Run the bike without the reg/rec - fine. Plug in the reg/rec while running and the RACKET is crazy!

Digital multi-tester, on the battery terminals:
motorcycle not running: 12.83 v
idle, no reg/rec: 12.43 v
idle, reg/rec: 11.12 v

What's my next step? more tests? to the dealer?
That's unfortunate. Before you tear into the stator again I would test the output with the regulator disconnected.
Unplug the regulator and set your volt meter for AC. With the bike running at a fast clip measure across all three white wires coming from the stator one pair at a time. A-B, B-C, A-C. This can be done at the plug going to the regulator. If the stator is any good all three readings should the same and be in the 40 to 50 VAC (that's volts alternating current) range. Anything out of the ordinary would indicate a bad stator. If all is well with your test then the regulator is suspect. Plz go back and check all your wiring from the stator area to be sure nothing got pinched or stripped. Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
That's unfortunate. Before you tear into the stator again I would test the output with the regulator disconnected.
Unplug the regulator and set your volt meter for AC. With the bike running at a fast clip measure across all three white wires coming from the stator one pair at a time. A-B, B-C, A-C. This can be done at the plug going to the regulator. If the stator is any good all three readings should the same and be in the 40 to 50 VAC (that's volts alternating current) range. Anything out of the ordinary would indicate a bad stator. If all is well with your test then the regulator is suspect. Plz go back and check all your wiring from the stator area to be sure nothing got pinched or stripped. Good luck.
Thanks for watching this thread.

With the reg/rec unplugged and the revs up (don't know how high because there is no tach): each combination got near or exactly at 73.2 volts, AC.

As I assembled the parts I checked over and over to make sure all was well with the wiring, no pinches or stripping.

I replaced the reg/rec last fall after the initial problem occurred, but before I replaced the stator. So that reg/rec has no more then 20 klms on it. Is it possible that the "new" reg/rec is fried already? I plugged in the old (original) unit and it makes the exact same noise (a strong grating sound).
 

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Thanks for watching this thread.

With the reg/rec unplugged and the revs up (don't know how high because there is no tach): each combination got near or exactly at 73.2 volts, AC.

As I assembled the parts I checked over and over to make sure all was well with the wiring, no pinches or stripping.

I replaced the reg/rec last fall after the initial problem occurred, but before I replaced the stator. So that reg/rec has no more then 20 klms on it. Is it possible that the "new" reg/rec is fried already? I plugged in the old (original) unit and it makes the exact same noise (a strong grating sound).
It sounds like you've done everything right so it goes back to the product. I would be calling Rick's next and relay your problem and test results to them. I've got one sitting on the shelf so am taking a keen interest in you sorting out this issue.
 

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Did you check the stator for rub marks on the ends of the pole pieces?
Did you check the reg/rect. for being shorted?
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Well, I'm at the end of my rope on this. I plan to load up the bike and bring it to the local Kawasaki dealership.

Will
 

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Did you check the stator for rub marks on the ends of the pole pieces?
Did you check the reg/rect. for being shorted?
Hi sfair, I don't blame liongrin for throwing in the towel. It seems odd that the Rick's stator is putting out over 70 VAC when the OEM stator checks out good at 50 VAC or slightly above at 4000 RPM. Just guessing that it may be an over-voltage situation.
 

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The reason that I mention #1 is the rotor to stator clearances are very tight and if the stator was made slightly out of tolerance, or if it was mounted incorrectly or if the side cover was askew, when the alternator is under load, the stator may just rub.
The reason for #2 is if the regulator is shorted, it can put a big load on the stator causing all kinds of noise.
He mentioned that the stator was replaced with no mention of checking the reg/rect.
There are certain stator failures that take out the reg/rect in short order whether they be new or old as soon as they are plugged in.
 

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The reason that I mention #1 is the rotor to stator clearances are very tight and if the stator was made slightly out of tolerance, or if it was mounted incorrectly or if the side cover was askew, when the alternator is under load, the stator may just rub.
The reason for #2 is if the regulator is shorted, it can put a big load on the stator causing all kinds of noise.
He mentioned that the stator was replaced with no mention of checking the reg/rect.
There are certain stator failures that take out the reg/rect in short order whether they be new or old as soon as they are plugged in.
Good point. Hopefully it's something simple and not too expensive.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Not sure if I communicated correctly. Here's the sequence:
- the bike started the new whining noise at the end of a very hard week long trip last fall. Still drove fine.
- Brought it into a local bike shop. They looked at it, confused and said to take it to a Kawi dealer.
- I found you guys on the Forum and discovered the stator issue on the 900. Decided to try to tackle it myself.
- took out the original stator. Had it tested. It tested fine, so I put it back in, but replaced the reg/rec just because.
- now the noise was much worse but it ran. Took it out and the bike died after about 10 k. The CAA guy that picked me up was a battery guy and he said definitely the battery was dead. I assumed therefore that the charging system was not working.
- I put the bike on blocks, ordered the new stator and took the time this spring to put it in. I put in the new stator and started the bike. Huge noise. Went for a short drive. Drove very well, but when I got back - about 10k it wouldn't start! Assumed the battery was dead, because there was no charging.
- I was showing a friend and he asked me start the bike. I happened to have the reg/rec unplugged and was shocked to find out that the bike sounded totally different - almost normal. Then I plugged the reg/rec. in and the noise was back with a vengeance.
- so then I'm back on the forum with you guys.
- I take the stator out again. Check everything - no sign of rubbing of any kind - no worn rubbed wires. I put it all back together, solder the wiring, wrap the wiring and close it all up.
- start the bike - NO CHANGE
- test the bike - and get the 70_+ readings (I assume that the higher the revs the higher the voltage, so my thought was that the stator is fine). Now from this thread it sounds like you guys think the stator may still be the problem - over voltage???.
- I don't know what would cause the reg/rec to blow, so if you know what would do that.... Could a new reg/rec solve the problem at this point?

Thanks.
 

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Not sure if I communicated correctly. Here's the sequence:
- the bike started the new whining noise at the end of a very hard week long trip last fall. Still drove fine.
- Brought it into a local bike shop. They looked at it, confused and said to take it to a Kawi dealer.
- I found you guys on the Forum and discovered the stator issue on the 900. Decided to try to tackle it myself.
- took out the original stator. Had it tested. It tested fine, so I put it back in, but replaced the reg/rec just because.
- now the noise was much worse but it ran. Took it out and the bike died after about 10 k. The CAA guy that picked me up was a battery guy and he said definitely the battery was dead. I assumed therefore that the charging system was not working.
- I put the bike on blocks, ordered the new stator and took the time this spring to put it in. I put in the new stator and started the bike. Huge noise. Went for a short drive. Drove very well, but when I got back - about 10k it wouldn't start! Assumed the battery was dead, because there was no charging.
- I was showing a friend and he asked me start the bike. I happened to have the reg/rec unplugged and was shocked to find out that the bike sounded totally different - almost normal. Then I plugged the reg/rec. in and the noise was back with a vengeance.
- so then I'm back on the forum with you guys.
- I take the stator out again. Check everything - no sign of rubbing of any kind - no worn rubbed wires. I put it all back together, solder the wiring, wrap the wiring and close it all up.
- start the bike - NO CHANGE
- test the bike - and get the 70_+ readings (I assume that the higher the revs the higher the voltage, so my thought was that the stator is fine). Now from this thread it sounds like you guys think the stator may still be the problem - over voltage???.
- I don't know what would cause the reg/rec to blow, so if you know what would do that.... Could a new reg/rec solve the problem at this point?

Thanks.
I would still give Rick's a call and pass on to them everything you told us. Your problem may not be that unique to a shop that specializes in charging systems. They will also clear up what voltage you should be reading from their unit.
My guess is you didn't have the revs as high as you may think. Four thousand RPM, which is what the shop manual says to bring the bike up to during testing, is a lot of revs when the bike is just sitting on the sidestand.
It's hard to second guess Kwak when they state the voltage reading should be 54 VAC and up at 4000 RPM. Just how much is "up"?
 

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Do the following:

1. Take a voltage reading across the battery.
2. Key on, take another reading.
3. Leave the key and meter probes on for five minutes, take another reading.
4. Start bike and at idle, take another reading.
5. Bring revs up to about what you think that the engine turns at normal city speed. (2000 to 2500 rpm, or there abouts)

Post back with the five readings.
 
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