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Old 02-02-2014, 03:44 PM   #1
robstarr OP
Joined: Aug 2011
Location: Sunshine Coast, QLD, Australia
Oddometer: 21
Puke Is it my battery or my alternator (or something else)?

Hi all,

I just purchased a Honda CT110 second hand (postie bike).

It's an oldy and the guy I bought it off said it had a new battery put it. All good.

I then ride it for a week or so and noticed last night the lights didn't auto come on as they do. Strange. A Blown bulb I thought. So I switched to high beam and it worked, got me to my destination.

On the way though, I noticed each time I braked my lights nearly shut down / off. Freaked me out a bit.

I then noticed on a good long part of the run that I switched to low beam and the low beam came back on! I then braked and the lights turned completely off. OUCH!

So, back to high beam and finally made it home.

What's the verdict doc? Alternator? I'm VERY new at all this, so please be easy on me. :-)

Thanks so much,

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Old 02-02-2014, 04:17 PM   #2
Joined: Dec 2008
Location: Eldon,Mo
Oddometer: 768
Sounds like it might have multiple problems but I would start with a voltmeter and check to see if the battery is putting out more than 12v with the engine off.
Then start the bike and see if it is putting out about 13.5 or more when running about 2000 rpm. If the voltage doesn't go up then the charging system has a problem and needs to be diagnosed. Stator,regulator,wiring connections. If the battery is way low on the first voltage test then it needs to be charged before doing the running test.
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Old 02-02-2014, 04:58 PM   #3
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Also check to make sure your battery terminal connections are clean & tight. Ground wire connection good, etc.
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Old 02-02-2014, 05:00 PM   #4
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It's the battery.
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Old 02-03-2014, 06:05 AM   #5
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Location: Hiding off Hwy 6, B.C.
Oddometer: 4,744
Isn't the rectifier hiding behind the battery on them? Check the connections, nasty what we found recently on one that hadn't run for years, a CT90 but I think the same systems.

Runs OK now but yes it does need a battery, dead and somewhat sucking all the juice from the charging system.
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Old 02-03-2014, 06:36 AM   #6
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Location: Turning expensive metal into scrap
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I seeme to recall this was a known issue. Something about the headlight and frying the rectifier? Can't recall where I saw that
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Old 02-03-2014, 11:13 PM   #7
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need to know what year I think. didn't some of these have AC headlights? if so, they are not part of the battery system.
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Old 02-05-2014, 08:47 PM   #8
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Joined: Feb 2004
Location: Parker, CO
Oddometer: 16,667
how old of a bike?

if there are brushes in the charging system they could be worn....with the battery not charging it will run off the battery until it's done
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Old 02-05-2014, 09:10 PM   #9
robstarr OP
Joined: Aug 2011
Location: Sunshine Coast, QLD, Australia
Oddometer: 21
Hi all and thanks so much for all the great feedback.

It's a 1994 model, she's pretty old and I've since done some research and as Beezer says the bike's lights don't run off the battery but off the motor (or so I've been told).

What's great is the place I bought it off immediately said to bring it in at no cost when I gave them a call, so for now, it looks like all will be good.

I'll post back here though to give some feedback for anyone in the future that has the same issue.

To everyone that replied, again, thanks. It's given me many tips for the future when I'm going it alone.

All the best,


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Old 02-10-2014, 06:00 PM   #10
Joined: Jul 2009
Location: Chandler, AZ
Oddometer: 5,069
The charging system and battery are easy to check. But you will need some information first. You need to start the engine, and check the idle voltage with a voltmeter. It will likely be 12V or less. Then rev the engine up to around 3000 rpm, and the reading should go up to about 14 volts (it varies by bike, that's why you need the numbers from the manual) I have seen some pretty strange configurations on old bikes (and old design bikes) some have a specific lighting coil on the stator that is separate from the charging system. Some also have a separate ignition coil on the stator (not the coil that the spark plug wire goes to) and will only run off that coil, and not the battery. My Puch moped is like that, and so is my Stella. The Stella has a battery, but it was only for the electric starter. Since I removed the starter, the battery is pretty much worthless. I keep it to run electrical things off of, like my compressor if I need to inflate a flat tire.

The problem could be anywhere in the electrical system. The light sockets, switch, loss of ground, a bad connection somewhere. I don't know if an Australian bike would have a sidestand safety switch, I thought only American bikes had those silly things.
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Old 02-10-2014, 07:44 PM   #11
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Joined: Apr 2009
Location: BC
Oddometer: 3,190
rectifier I ve read is crappy. I remember something about people using a rectifier from radio shack to replace it. From parts in usa it's . Email him since he is the expert on them plus it's the place to get the replacement parts. Also this website for more info including the manual
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Old 03-06-2014, 04:28 PM   #12
robstarr OP
Joined: Aug 2011
Location: Sunshine Coast, QLD, Australia
Oddometer: 21
Get this. It had 6 volt lights in it rather than 12 volt. They changed the globes. Bike I'd fine. How's that for simple.

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