Fuel gauge perfidy - '86 GL 1200 I


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gemotra
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Fuel gauge perfidy - '86 GL 1200 I

Postby gemotra » Fri Sep 21, 2012 8:53 pm



Upon filling the tank, my fuel gauge needle pegs over to "Full" as it should. After 3-4 ignition cycles, however, it gradually slumps over to "Empty", even if virtually no fuel has actually been consumed. The needle will then stay on "Empty" until the tank is re-filled. The low fuel warning light operates normally, as does the temperature gauge.

Is this likely a mechanical problem (e.g. a faulty tank float) or an electrical problem? If, as I suspect, it's electrical, where do I start to look?

I concede this is far from the worst problem one could have, but I'd like to fix it if I could, short of tearing into the tank itself.



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skier
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Re: Fuel gauge perfidy - '86 GL 1200 I

Postby skier » Fri Sep 21, 2012 9:23 pm

Is your temp gauge operating normally? That will eliminate the 7 volt regulator as the problem, as it supplies voltage to both gauges.

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WingAdmin
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Re: Fuel gauge perfidy - '86 GL 1200 I

Postby WingAdmin » Mon Sep 24, 2012 2:43 pm

He mentioned the temp gauge operates normally.

I'm going to guess that the float itself has failed. When the tank is empty, any fuel in the float drains out. You fill the tank, the float moves up to the top of the tank with the fuel, as it should. As time goes on, it becomes saturated with fuel, and sinks to the bottom of the tank. You ride until the tank is empty, the fuel in the float drains out, and the cycle repeats.

gemotra
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Re: Fuel gauge perfidy - '86 GL 1200 I

Postby gemotra » Sun Sep 30, 2012 9:35 pm

Thanks, WingAdmin. Your assessment makes sense, but let me add this:

I very rarely let the fuel level get low enough to activate the low fuel warning light. Given that there is never less than 1.5 - 2.0 gallons in the tank, could a "sodden" float ever have the opportunity to regain the requisite bouyancy to operate properly when the tank is filled (which it does, without fail)?

Granted, I've no idea how the float functions, but certainly agree that it's the most obvious culprit...I've just been inclined to dismiss it precisely because the gauge DOES dependably register "Full" (albeit briefly) when the tank is filled.

I'm guessing the float and associated sending mechanism are inaccessible unless one removes, and perhaps disassembles, the tank, correct?

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WingAdmin
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Re: Fuel gauge perfidy - '86 GL 1200 I

Postby WingAdmin » Sun Sep 30, 2012 10:39 pm

gemotra wrote:Thanks, WingAdmin. Your assessment makes sense, but let me add this:

I very rarely let the fuel level get low enough to activate the low fuel warning light. Given that there is never less than 1.5 - 2.0 gallons in the tank, could a "sodden" float ever have the opportunity to regain the requisite bouyancy to operate properly when the tank is filled (which it does, without fail)?

Granted, I've no idea how the float functions, but certainly agree that it's the most obvious culprit...I've just been inclined to dismiss it precisely because the gauge DOES dependably register "Full" (albeit briefly) when the tank is filled.

I'm guessing the float and associated sending mechanism are inaccessible unless one removes, and perhaps disassembles, the tank, correct?


Probably not - I don't know how low the float can go in your bike, and just how much fuel is left at that point.

The float assembly can be removed from the top of the tank, just remove the seat and the crossmember, and the float assembly can be removed - make sure the tank is empty (or very low) first!

GL1200 Fuel tank
GL1200 Fuel tank

gemotra
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Re: Fuel gauge perfidy - '86 GL 1200 I

Postby gemotra » Mon Oct 01, 2012 3:15 pm

WingAdmin:
Hot dawg, a PICTURE! Cover me; I'm going in! I think I'll buy the full shop manual first though, so I can find my way back. Speaking of lost bouyancy, my OE seat has the same problem and I've been thinking of replacing it; this presents the opportunity.
Thanks again.

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Jorge Caneschi
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Re: Fuel gauge perfidy - '86 GL 1200 I

Postby Jorge Caneschi » Wed Nov 25, 2015 10:21 am

WingAdmin wrote:He mentioned the temp gauge operates normally.

I'm going to guess that the float itself has failed. When the tank is empty, any fuel in the float drains out. You fill the tank, the float moves up to the top of the tank with the fuel, as it should. As time goes on, it becomes saturated with fuel, and sinks to the bottom of the tank. You ride until the tank is empty, the fuel in the float drains out, and the cycle repeats.


Hi, I would like an opinion of the most experienced. As I bought the Aspencade 1985 a few time ago, I'm doing an overhaul on the bike. About the gauge and float, both are working correctly, which I might note is that there is sludge in the bottom of the tank, does not seem to rust but an sludge accumulated of long years. I thought I'd remove the tank gauge and float, for better access for cleaning. But I have a doubt in removing and to damage the ensemble and to have a defect that today I do not have. Has anyone had this problem and give an opinion about, whether it is worthwhile to disassemble all for cleaning, or this bottom sludge tank will be diluted and fade with time? Thanks in advance.
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thompsoj22
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Re: Fuel gauge perfidy - '86 GL 1200 I

Postby thompsoj22 » Wed Nov 25, 2015 8:45 pm

ok, ill throw my guess at it! Ill say it is the sender wiper or winding. The wiper is an extremely small metal contact that moves over the surface of the windings. it uses a small amount of friction/pressure to maintain contact and over time it can fracture, corrode. The winding must still be intact but could also be corroded. I haven't had much "long term" success restoring either. I have seen new sending units on ebay.

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Re: Fuel gauge perfidy - '86 GL 1200 I

Postby twocams » Thu Nov 26, 2015 10:51 pm

I would leave the tank where it is. But clean it as best as you can. Put in a little gas or something to break up the slug. And suck it out or get a rag inside to soak up as much as possible.

Twocams

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Jorge Caneschi
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Re: Fuel gauge perfidy - '86 GL 1200 I

Postby Jorge Caneschi » Fri Nov 27, 2015 6:26 am

twocams wrote:I would leave the tank where it is. But clean it as best as you can. Put in a little gas or something to break up the slug. And suck it out or get a rag inside to soak up as much as possible.


Ok. Twocams, Thank you for your opinion.

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Jorge Caneschi
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Re: Fuel gauge perfidy - '86 GL 1200 I

Postby Jorge Caneschi » Fri Nov 27, 2015 6:29 am

thompsoj22 wrote:ok, ill throw my guess at it! Ill say it is the sender wiper or winding. The wiper is an extremely small metal contact that moves over the surface of the windings. it uses a small amount of friction/pressure to maintain contact and over time it can fracture, corrode. The winding must still be intact but could also be corroded. I haven't had much "long term" success restoring either. I have seen new sending units on ebay.


Ok. Thompsoj22. Thanks for the tip.




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