Overheating 950 and Battery drain - what to look for next?

Discussion in 'Dakar champion (950/990)' started by Mike Mueller, Jun 21, 2018.

  1. Mike Mueller

    Mike Mueller Adventurer

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    2006 950 Adventure with all the upgrades.

    So I tried to go out for a little ride the other day.
    The air temp was in the 70's, not too hot.
    100 miles of freeway - everything was fine.
    Gas stop - everything was normal.
    20 miles of flat gravel roads - everything fine.

    Just started to go up a large hill with switchbacks so slower speed and the bike overheats.
    I happened to look down and see the bars on the dash flashing and the water temp light on.
    I shut it down immediately. Filled the overflow tank with water and decided to head back towards civilization. With good air flow there was no issue with heat (stayed at 4 bars) on the gravel road and then all the way home. We noticed the fans were not running at all.

    The bike had all the upgrades done to it before I got it. Water pump and extra fan.

    When I finally got home I stopped for gas (cooling was running still at 4 bars) and the lithium battery was dead! No indicator lights on the dash suggesting charging issues. Battery was replaced just 8 months ago and has always been strong (never a trickle charger).

    [​IMG]

    So, I'm going to tear into it this weekend to see if I can fix it.
    Electrical has to be my weak spot but I have basic electrical tools.

    What do you think I should look at first?
    Thanks guys!
    #1
  2. albani

    albani Been here awhile

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    Your charging system won't have dashboard indicators.
    What is the voltage at idle with no accessories on, and at 5000 rpm? (you want 14V thereabouts, anything under 13 the system is not charging)
    the 3 wire stator to rectifier connector is a known weakspot. fwiw you want no less than 20ish Volts AC with the stator unplugged from the rectifier at idle, you should see 75ish Volts AC at 5000 rpm. FSM says ~1 Ohm per winding.
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  3. jhalfhide

    jhalfhide Been here awhile

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    Lithium battery should be a big no unless you upgrade your reg/rec first. Likely to kill the battery or catch fire if you’re really unlucky.

    Stick a normal AGM battery in and I bet it’ll fire right up


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  4. Mike Mueller

    Mike Mueller Adventurer

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    Awesome stuff Albani - I have a volt meter and will check that out.

    Jhalfhide - Really? It's always had the lithium and ran wonderfully. That said, the reg/rec might have been upgraded, I'll have to look. Either way, I still need to figure out the cooling issue.
    #4
  5. jhalfhide

    jhalfhide Been here awhile

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    Basically, lithium batteries can’t deal with overcharging or voltage spikes. Older reg/rec systems just dump it over to the battery and forget about it. With a lithium, the overcharging or spikes will either ruin the battery or overheat the reg/rec and break that.

    Modern bikes ship with new reg/recs that are designed to work with lithium. Some newer bikes even come with them. You check out an older bike with a lithium battery and check the temp of the reg/rec... it’ll be really hot.


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  6. albani

    albani Been here awhile

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    if your charging system isn't working properly your system's voltage will sag resulting in the fan not spinning at optimal speeds resulting in runaway temperatures.

    Source: my 950 went through this in April while I was visiting Tuscon with its seemingly infinite redlights and warm temps.
    Edit: stator was barely generating enough power to charge the battery above 6,000rpm. got me home to replace it and the regulator with a mosfet style model.
    [​IMG]
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  7. Mike Mueller

    Mike Mueller Adventurer

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    What a great looking bike! Orange with a high fender! I have the same hard cases too. We could be twinsies! ;)

    I don't think my fan was spinning at all, zero, nada. I'll find out more this weekend.
    How do you test to see if the charging system is working correctly?
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  8. albani

    albani Been here awhile

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    Thanks! Keep an eye out for it, and or lets go riding sometime if you're so inclined. (Vallejo here)
    Fan switch is on the rad, easy to get to, it's beside the coolant expansion tank. you can jumper it to make sure the fan itself is okay. The thermoswitch is rated to turn on at 105C. There's aftermarket options for lowering this temperature.
    volt test at the battery like mentioned before. 14V at 5000rpm. Anything under 13V it's not charging.
    #8
  9. Mike Mueller

    Mike Mueller Adventurer

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    UPDATE:

    So, I pulled the lithium battery I had in there since last October out of the bike.
    My local Cycle Gear had said they have a lithium tester.
    As I'm pulling it out I noticed the bottom of the battery was slightly bulged at the bottom.
    Cycle Gear saw it and warrantee'd the battery. They did test it and said that there was also a bad cell that might have come back with a proper charge but with the bulge it was an easy decision to toss.

    I got money back for the Lithium and ordered a new AGM styled battery that should be here mid week.
    I know it's not the answer, just a piece in the puzzle.

    When the new battery gets here I'll check all connections and start looking for the cause.
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  10. jhalfhide

    jhalfhide Been here awhile

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    The cause was probably the fact it’s been cooked by your reg/rec. Some lithium’s claim to have inbuilt protection but this protection just dumps the excess back down the line and causes your reg/rec to cook. My guess is, you’ll have zero issues with the AGM


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  11. Mike Mueller

    Mike Mueller Adventurer

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    That would be wonderful if it happens to be the case jhalfhide
    Interestingly, the first person I talked to at Cycle Gear when I mentioned I wanted an AGM style of battery, pulled one off the shelf and said this will work. It was a lead acid battery and the guy had no idea what he was doing. It wasn't until I found a 2nd person who knew what I was asking for and looked up batteries and found the right one.

    A 3rd person there, when hearing "AGM", thought the G stood for Gel and suggested that they did indeed have "GEL" Batteries in stock.

    Holy crap! You have to be so careful these days with sales people!
    #11
  12. roookie1

    roookie1 Been here awhile

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    Im sorry but that´s not correct. I have been running a Lithium battery in my 950 adv for the last 5 years (approx 50000 km). No modification, no problems..
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  13. Boatman

    Boatman Membership has it's privileges ;-) Supporter

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    AGM (absorbent glass mat) and Gel cell are both lead acid batteries. AGM has fiberglass mats between the lead plates. Gel uses a thickened electrolyte instead of liquid.
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  14. roookie1

    roookie1 Been here awhile

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    Check the red three wire connection to the rec/reg. Its known to get a bad connection. The rec/reg might still be fine.. That was the case with mine..
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  15. jhalfhide

    jhalfhide Been here awhile

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    It hasn’t happened to me yet, doesn’t make it right. Plenty of people do get away with it but also, plenty don’t. That’s when bikes catch fire and that’s when insurers don’t pay it. Your money, your risk.

    You’re in a thread where someone’s battery has actually gone and you’re saying it doesn’t happen!?!

    Spend a little more and upgrade your reg/rec too, and get the job done properly.


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  16. Mike Mueller

    Mike Mueller Adventurer

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    Ok, so the new AGM battery came in. I charged it overnight on a battery tender and installed it.

    [​IMG]

    I then cleaned all the connections, including both fuses in this thing. I pulled it all apart, pulled the fuses out, made sure everything was clean and dry.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Fuses back in, connections tight and dry.

    Bike starts right up. Volt meter to the battery terminals and I get the following:

    Key Off: 13.1 volts
    Idle: 14.75
    at 3,000 RPM: 17.6​

    I'm not sure how to unplug the Stator as Albani says...
    and I assume the 75ish is a misprint and might have supposed to be 17.5ish?

    #16
  17. albani

    albani Been here awhile

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    Not a missprint.
    75VAC is *PRIOR* to rectification/regulation *at* 5000rpm with no load (ie, no rectifier).
    17.5VDC *AFTER* rectification/regulation is *TOO HIGH* period.
    Your rectifier or a ground is fucked which is why your lithium failed. They cannot be over/undervolted or it damages the cells.
    dump a Fet model rectifier in it and forget about it. (FH012A, etc)
    Do not run the bike with it dumping 17.5V into the electrical system or else you run the risk of damaging electronics and boiling the battery.
    fwiw stator plugs are usually ruined. this isn't a new subject...

    Here's some reading:
    http://www.ktm950.info/how/Electric...Charging Systems/950-990_charging_system.html
    https://advrider.com/index.php?threads/ktm-990-adventure-2007-alternator-test.669249/
    http://www.ktm950.info/how/Electrical Shop/Troubleshooting Charging Systems/MCNdec05charging.pdf

    Nice work so far, you're getting there.
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  18. Mike Mueller

    Mike Mueller Adventurer

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    LOL! See how much I don't know?
    I'm off to read that stuff, order what I need and move along the right path.
    I really appreciate the help - and yeah, let's ride together some time!
    #18
  19. Mike Mueller

    Mike Mueller Adventurer

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    UPDATE:

    Ok, so I had a chance to work on the bike.
    I pulled the VRR off the bike and the connections were absolutely horrible. Grease, gunk, dirt and moisture.
    Ugh!

    I found that a lot of people have been pushing the MOSFET FH020AA VRRs and have been very happy with them. Apparently they work completely differently on the inside.

    That led me to http://www.roadstercycle.com/ (warning, it’s not a pretty website) and that led me to the video channel where I found out how to check both my VRR and Stator. That kind of stuff really helps me as I’m so not an electrical person.

    Here's the video for checking the VRR:


    Here's my results:
    [​IMG]

    Yeah, that third one should be a big fat ZERO so it looks like I do have a bad VRR.

    Now, on to the Stator. He has a video for that too ()

    I set my voltmeter at 200 ohms (I think)
    [​IMG]

    And followed what he did in the video.
    I didn’t get the same .9 that he did in the video. Is that important? I don’t know. B to C wouldn’t go down to the same 1.6 either. The best I could get was a 3.0 but it might also be that my crappy multimeter leads were falling apart too. The red metal probe part actually pulled out just before the B to C test. So it could be that.

    As for the ground portion, they all checked out fine.

    [​IMG]

    So it looks like I’ll be buying a Super MOSFET FH020AA kit from Jack.
    I know it was also suggested I use upgraded connectors of some sort - do you know if the MOSFET connectors are the 'upgraded' ones?
    #19
  20. Mike Mueller

    Mike Mueller Adventurer

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    Just a quick update...

    New MOSFAT Regulator/Rectifier arrive and installed.
    New AGM Battery installed.
    Voltage at rest and 5,000 is now fabulous!

    Unfortunately I still have the same Fan problem.
    I just replaced the thermocoupler with a new KTM OEM one and still no fans.
    Sticking my fat fingers in there, they feel like they spin ok.
    Next I'm going to pull the radiator and fans out and see if I can find an electrical connection issue (hopefully tomorrow).

    In totally unrelated news - new tires just arrived!
    Still waiting for a radiator cap from AOMC.mx but that's secondary to the issue I think.
    #20