regulatortemperature


Information and questions on GL1200 Goldwings (1984-1987)
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regulatortemperature

Postby JohnCJK » Wed May 09, 2012 9:46 pm



On a 1985 Aspencade 1200 what is the temperature of the regulator when running on idle?
I am measuring +-165 degrees
Is this a normal temp or is it too high.

The regulator seems to be fairly new and is an aftermarket part
I just got the GW a few weeks ago and had it pretty much stripped down.
Did a test run of the engine and all seems fine, but i am worried about the high temp of the regulator.

Here is what i did to the bike:
New fork seals, fork oil and progressive springs
all new brake pads.
New front brake fluid.
New air and oil filter (K&N)
New engine oil and coolant.
Re jetted Carbs and cleaned. ( still have to sync them)
new air cut off valve.
Removed all secondary air system parts
New fuel line and filter.
New valve cover seals
new rear drive oil
Full air compressor maintenance ( how long does it take to get the recommended air presuure in the rear shocks?)
3 yellow wire mod
New full exhaust and gaskets
Cleaned all electrical connections
A lot of body work


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Re: regulatortemperature

Postby Mooseman » Wed May 09, 2012 10:06 pm

The regulator/rectafier is a large heat sink. Doesn't take much after starting to get hot to the touch, then to hot to handle. Put a volt meter on the battery and see what kind of charge you are getting. Any extra goes to the heat sink. That's why so many fins.
Enjoy the ride. They are all good, just some better than others.
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Re: regulatortemperature

Postby WingAdmin » Wed May 09, 2012 10:14 pm

165 is reasonable. It will get hotter when the engine is running at higher RPM, and the battery is fully charged. Whatever energy generated by the stator that isn't used to charge the battery and run the electrical accessories is converted into heat by the regulator. When the battery is fully charged, and the engine is at a high RPM, that's a lot of energy being converted to heat, so it gets very hot.
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Re: regulatortemperature

Postby JohnCJK » Thu May 10, 2012 9:14 am

Thanks for your replies.
So basicly it is better to use more electrical accessories.
The alternator generates 500W and whatever is not used by the battery is power to be used for accessories, lights....or otherwise tranferred in to heat at the regulator.

A good battery should not use more then 50W at any given time.
Leaves 450W to be used! That is a lot! Time for some extra driving lights.

Would also be great to increase the air flow at the regulator...
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Re: regulatortemperature

Postby tricky » Thu May 10, 2012 10:07 am

The stock alternator setup will not power more than 1 55 watt driving lamp or two 35 Watt, if your going to add the lamps make sure you install a voltmeter
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Re: regulatortemperature

Postby Mooseman » Thu May 10, 2012 11:31 am

If you add more lights to the GL1200 you are looking for trouble. Especially in stop and go traffic. If you add more lights, LED's are good and converting the running and brake bulbs to LED's will make things better. I have a volt meter installed on my wing and it really takes a dip when running errands and a lot of stop and go traffic. The brake lights and turn signals plus the starter eats a lot of that battery reserve. Then when I get back out on the highway it takes awhile before I get back to the 14V mark. Sometimes quicker than others. When I get home and put it on the battery tender, it takes a little time before going to float mode.
Bottom line is the GL1200 was not designed for extra lights.
Enjoy the ride. They are all good, just some better than others.
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Re: regulatortemperature

Postby WingAdmin » Thu May 10, 2012 2:16 pm

Running at idle, a stock 1000, 1100 or 1200 will actually draw down the battery. You need to be up around 2,000 RPM before the stator produces enough power to run the bike AND charge the battery.

50 watts is only 3.6 amps - I can guarantee you that the battery will draw way more than this immediately after start.

I have two 35 watt lights on my 1100, but I had to switch my running and brake lights to LEDs to free up enough power to be able to drive those lights without drawing down the battery - and I still have it set up to shut them off if I'm sitting at an intersection.
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Re: regulatortemperature

Postby JohnCJK » Thu May 10, 2012 2:26 pm

I have all accessory lights changed to LED's on a seperate switch.
The amber lights at the front wheel are also LED's on a seperate switch.
and the extra driving lights are 2 headlights with H4 led's also on a seperate switch, but wired so that when i use the high beam on my main headlight, the high beam on the led's comes on also.

The brake lights are regular bulbs, because i think when changing those to led's, the tail/brake light will stay on on my dashboard.
Using a compensator/ resistor would defeat the purpose of using led's.

so if the GW uses so much power, how come that the regulator heats up that much from unused power.
sounds a bit like a contradiction..
Not trying to argue, but i want to understand 100%
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Re: regulatortemperature

Postby WingAdmin » Thu May 10, 2012 4:22 pm

Your electrical system should never be running for any length of time without some reserve capacity. If it is, you're overloading your bike's electrical system. You should have enough capacity to run your accessories, ignition, and to charge the battery when it is depleted after starting the engine. Eventually, the battery is going to reach a full charge state, and that will represent excess capacity right there.

So the regulator should ALWAYS be dissipating some energy. It really does not take a lot of energy to produce a lot of heat. As an example, I used a pair of 3.3 ohm, 100-watt power resistors in parallel with the turn signal LEDs on my GL1500 to keep the auto cancel operational. When I fed 12 volts through them, they dissipated approximately 43 watts each, and reached a temperature of 180 degrees F in about 30 seconds. I mounted them to the frame of the bike to use as a giant heat sink. That, and the fact that they are on a 50% duty cycle (they're turn signals, so the power is intermittent), was enough to keep the temperature down to a point where they wouldn't melt my trunk/saddlebags.


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