1985 GW 1200 Power Issue


Information and questions on GL1200 Goldwings (1984-1987)
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Garage Rat
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Motorcycle: 1985 GoldWing 1200 interstate

1985 GW 1200 Power Issue

Postby Garage Rat » Tue Jun 21, 2011 12:34 pm



Power issue....
I have a 1985 1200 Gold Wing Interstate with low mileage.
Last night, took it out for a ride with my son, started fine like any other times.
Stopped for Ice cream. When ready to leave, would not start.

Related Problem;
I have a voltmeter on the side dash with a power on switch. When I turn on the volt meter (key to off position) it reads 12.5 + volts... When I turned the key to the on position, the volt meter went down to 0 volts where the radio clock also turns off and no apparent visibility of power.
When the key is turned back to the off position, the voltmeter goes back up to 12.x volts and clock display's 1 o'clock (reset's to 1:00).

Done some diagnostics where I verified the connection on the battery, power cables that was visible enough, fuses, etc. I don't think it's a battery or a fuse issue since there wouldn't be any power.
I believe it's like - A short in a wire, an electrical part that burned out, but which one ????

Can feedback be provide. Be appreciated.
Ride long, ride safe.

Albert



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thrasherg
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Re: 1985 GW 1200 Power Issue

Postby thrasherg » Tue Jun 21, 2011 2:21 pm

I would be fairly sure it's a bad battery. It is very common (due to vibration) that battery's fail, there is enough connection inside the battery to show 12+ volts with no load, but the minute any kind of load is placed on the battery it goes open circuit and shows zero volts. I would suggest disconnecting the positive lead from the battery, connect a volt meter across the battery (should show 12+ volts) then connect a load (like a 21watt light bulb) across the battery and see what happens to the volts. If they drop to zero, then it is definitely the battery that has failed. If the volts stay at 12 volts then it would indicate a fault in the bike electrics, but based on your description, I feel pretty confident your battery has failed.

Gary

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Re: 1985 GW 1200 Power Issue

Postby WingAdmin » Tue Jun 21, 2011 2:28 pm

Also check the (master) dogbone fuse. It can cause a sudden electrical failure as well.

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thrasherg
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Re: 1985 GW 1200 Power Issue

Postby thrasherg » Tue Jun 21, 2011 2:36 pm

WingAdmin wrote:Also check the (master) dogbone fuse. It can cause a sudden electrical failure as well.


Good point, I had forgotten about that one!!

Gary

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Re: 1985 GW 1200 Power Issue

Postby Garage Rat » Tue Jun 21, 2011 2:46 pm

I have verified the dog bone fuse and it's ok. I took it out and cleaned it and put it back in.
However, there is power with the ignition off, just when the ignition is turned on the power goes off.

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thrasherg
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Re: 1985 GW 1200 Power Issue

Postby thrasherg » Tue Jun 21, 2011 2:52 pm

Exactly what happens when a cell goes bad inside the battery, no load (Ignition off) there is 12+ volts, then under load (Ignition on) the volts drop to less than 8, often 0.. Really sounds like a failed battery. As mentioned disconnecting the positive terminal of the battery (So it is isolated from the bikes electronics) and then measuring the battery voltage with no load and then with a load (Something that requires a couple of amps) is the only way to be sure it is or isn't the battery.

Gary

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Re: 1985 GW 1200 Power Issue

Postby Garage Rat » Tue Jun 21, 2011 2:57 pm

Thanks Gary. I will try that tonight and see what the outcome is.
I hope that is all it is.

Do you think I could put a power charger to it and try that?

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thrasherg
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Re: 1985 GW 1200 Power Issue

Postby thrasherg » Tue Jun 21, 2011 3:16 pm

If it is a cell that has failed inside the battery, I have never seen anyone successfully repair it!! Usually a new battery is the only option (and they aren't that cheap!!).

Gary

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WingAdmin
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Re: 1985 GW 1200 Power Issue

Postby WingAdmin » Tue Jun 21, 2011 5:22 pm

If you physically look at the battery and one (or more) of the cells is extremely low on electrolyte, it's possible that you might be able to refill the cell(s) with distilled water and rescue it - but if not, the battery is toast, unfortunately.

Have a look at investing in a Battery Tender.

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Re: 1985 GW 1200 Power Issue

Postby Garage Rat » Tue Jun 21, 2011 9:25 pm

Hi Guys,

I have tried the battery test with a load (Tail light bulb), the battery his at 12.5 volts and drops to 0.5 volts when the bulb is put across from + to -.

I'll bring the battery to our Honda dealer tomorrow and have them confirm that the nattery is the problem.

Would a battery tender be strong enough to pass enough voltage to turn on the lights???

Thanks again. I'll let you know tomorrow.

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WingAdmin
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Posts: 17050
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1982 GL1100A Aspencade (sold)
1989 PC800 (wife's!)
1998 XV250 Virago (sold)
2007 Aspen Sentry Trailer

Re: 1985 GW 1200 Power Issue

Postby WingAdmin » Tue Jun 21, 2011 10:45 pm

Battery Tenders are not power supplies, they have fairly intelligent circuitry inside them that analyzes your battery condition and charges them as required.

Garage Rat
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Motorcycle: 1985 GoldWing 1200 interstate

Re: 1985 GW 1200 Power Issue

Postby Garage Rat » Wed Jun 22, 2011 9:05 am

I've re-tested my battery (stand alone) this morning with a multimeter and a small brake light bulp.
The battery showed 12.8 volts. When I place a load across, it goes down to 0.5 volts.
Got to be the battery......

Will let you know. For the mean time, thanks for all your feedback.

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thrasherg
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Re: 1985 GW 1200 Power Issue

Postby thrasherg » Wed Jun 22, 2011 11:06 am

Has to be the battery. As Wingadmin says, a battery tender is a great investment if you don't ride the bike very often. My batteries use to die every 18 to 24 months, I then bought a battery tender that I connect as soon as the bike is in the garage and I have not had a single battery fail in 6 years!! The tender only helps if your not riding a lot.. It does not run lights or anythying, it just monitors the battery and charges it when required then lets it slowly discharge and recharges it. this constant disharging/recharging is what stops the plates inside the cell from sulphating up.. Battery for a wing is around $80, a battery tender is around $40 so for me, if the tender extended the battery life by 1 year it had paid for itself.. It has paid for itself 5 times over now!!

Gary




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