Rectifier Problems


Information and questions on GL1200 Goldwings (1984-1987)
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JoeEatTaco
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri May 27, 2016 5:43 pm
Location: Michigan
Motorcycle: 1987 GL1200A Aspencade

Rectifier Problems

Postby JoeEatTaco » Fri May 27, 2016 11:21 pm



Hello everyone, I own a 1986 GL1200 Aspencade and have been battling electrical issues for almost a year now. Beginning last year the bike began to run itself dead,and not knowing much about working on motorcycles since I'd only worked on cars I took it to a local shop. The shop concluded that the rectifier needed replacement and I went ahead and did this myself. The connector happened to be melted so I ended up just soldering the wires directly together. This worked fine for about a week, then the bike began to slowly (after about a full day of driving) work its way down to a dead battery. After lots of reading, and not much probing, I just went for it and replaced both the stator and rectifier (before I used a $20 amazon one, now I found one for $120 off of a parts site that appeared to be better quality, although the unit I received was missing the black wire I was still seeing over 14V with the engine running). As exciting as it was to have a functioning charging system, I kept an eye on the rectifier while I drove all day. The rectifier seemed way too hot, since I couldn't even hold my hand on it for long. By the time I finished an hour long drive home, my system was no longer charging at an adequate rate and the battery worked its way to dead after a couple of stops for gas and food.

I'm assuming the rectifier ended up killing itself due to all the heat it was dissipating, so I've ordered one more final unit after calling the company my rectifier came from. This unit has all matching wires and appears to be of better quality, even though it should've been the same part. After probing all day today, I notice about a half volt drop from my positive terminal to my fuse box positive lead, and no drop between my grounds. I ran a continuity test and I believe this was just returning values in Ohms, and found there to be about 500 ohms of resistance from the positive battery lead to the positive fuse lead. Again, the ground has essentially 0 ohms of resistance. I'm assuming this isn't normal and that my positive connection needs to be replaced. I also opened all the connectors to the left of the fuse box and cleaned them out wire wire brushes so there's no corrosion.

My main issue is that I don't know which wires this piece actually consists of as it runs through lots of connectors and wire colors between the fuse box and battery. I also don't know if I can just bypass all of these and go right from the battery to the box, I would assumed this would mean the fuse box is always on regardless of ignition status so I'm avoiding this right now. I would hate to burn up another rectifier but if anyone could point me in the direction of where to probe, or what wires I may need to replace I would greatly appreciate it. I really love this motorcycle and all these electrical issues are killing me not being able to drive it.

Sorry for the long message but I wanted lots of details.

Thanks,
Joe



flash1942
Posts: 129
Joined: Fri Jan 24, 2014 4:37 pm
Location: Midwest
Motorcycle: '84 Aspencade

Re: Rectifier Problems

Postby flash1942 » Sat May 28, 2016 9:16 am

There is a LOT of info on this site that will help you. Use search box to look up. One of the best things you can do for your bike is to convert to a SERIES R/R (find at roadstercycle.com) and hardwire the 3 stator output wires. Hookup is super simple and intuitive. The series type as opposed to the shunt type gives the bike only what it needs. The shunt type makes the stator run at FULL output 100% of the time, which does use engine power. ONE caution here..........don't overrun your stator's rated output with overuse of lighting and "electrical doodads" or you will "force" the stator to try to put out more than it was designed for and could possibly fail.

JoeEatTaco
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri May 27, 2016 5:43 pm
Location: Michigan
Motorcycle: 1987 GL1200A Aspencade

Re: Rectifier Problems

Postby JoeEatTaco » Sat May 28, 2016 12:32 pm

Thank you very much for your advice so far, I hadn't considered the series type yet. I have done a lot of searching and am having a bit of trouble finding someone with an issue very close to mine. I did cut the connector and hard solder the stator connection when I replaced it like I had seen others on here do,and all accessory lights are always left off since I know I have electrical issues.

flash1942
Posts: 129
Joined: Fri Jan 24, 2014 4:37 pm
Location: Midwest
Motorcycle: '84 Aspencade

Re: Rectifier Problems

Postby flash1942 » Sat May 28, 2016 2:07 pm

I would guess the series type would solve your problems. I had a similar situation with mine. Why would anyone want to use a "block" heater to burn up excess power when there is a better way?
I would also suggest the use of a good voltmeter mounted in the dash to monitor things.
Happy riding!

Rusty Bike
Posts: 269
Joined: Sun Feb 28, 2016 1:55 pm
Location: New castle, PA
Motorcycle: 86 GL1200 SEi, 78 Yamaha XS750SE, 86 Honda XL125, 4.5 HP belt drive Minibike my dad built, foot clutch!

Re: Rectifier Problems

Postby Rusty Bike » Sat May 28, 2016 7:26 pm

There is an "Electrical Troubleshooting Manual" for that bike. Fine them on Ebay.
You may have some corrosion in the electrical connectors on that bike. Keep poking at it, you'll find it.




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