Singing those old voltmeter blues


Information and questions on GL1200 Goldwings (1984-1987)
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rcgreg
Posts: 204
Joined: Sun Jul 10, 2011 11:46 am
Location: Creston BC Canada
Motorcycle: 1985 GL1200 Limited

Singing those old voltmeter blues

Post by rcgreg »



So there I am, riding around on a beautiful hot summer day, wind beating against the helmet, confident in my wiring fix for the 32 year old stator on the GL 1200 Limited. I glance down at the voltmeter and it says 11.5 Volts. Yikes! Did I screw up on the wiring somehow? Yup, it happens, I've known to manufacture a cold solder joint or two in my time - but a Weller gun on high held onto the joint till the insulation starts to curl indicates that should not be the problem. So homeward I hurry, hoping the old girl gets me there. Then to my surprise, voltmeter shows 13.7 then 12.5 then 11.8 then back to 13.6 and holds steady. All sorts of expensive thoughts go through my head - PoorBoy Mod, New Stator and engine pull, rewiring?
Back home I pull off the cover and throw the multimeter onto the battery terminals - 14 Plus volts - Whaaa???
Voltmeter is definitely reading different than whats coming off the stator.
So - question is - why? Searching the wiring diagram maze (An exercise suitable for Mensa members only) leaves me only more confused.
There appears to be a whole bunch of connections going to what is labeled voltmeter - why? Logic tells me there should only be three- a digital voltmeter is a simple instrument. Positive and negative for the meter itself, and a sensing wire for the circuit to be measured. Nowhere in the Clymer or Honda service manual do I see how to R and R the beast.
Has anyone replaced, refurbished, repaired this thing - or do we just live withe inaccuracy of a 32 year old meter?



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virgilmobile
Posts: 9082
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Location: Denham Springs,La.
Motorcycle: 1988 GL1500 I
Previously owned
78 GL1000
81 GL1100
82 GL1100 I
83 GL1100 I
83 GL1100 standard
84 GL 1200 I

Re: Singing those old voltmeter blues

Post by virgilmobile »

30 year old wiring,connections,faring plug,questionable grounds and a old meter meter...Hmmmm.....Leave it alone and add a simple small digital meter.Hook it to the relay mod you did to the stator sense wire.
You did this mod didn't you?

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Rednaxs60
Posts: 2353
Joined: Wed Nov 18, 2015 12:44 pm
Location: Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
Motorcycle: 1985 GL1200 LTD
1995 GL1500 SE CDN Edition
2012 Suzuki DL1000 VStrom
2008 GL1800 (sold)
Ontario 1985 GL1200 LTD (sold)

Re: Singing those old voltmeter blues

Post by Rednaxs60 »

The voltmeter is last in a series of wiring connections as I recollect. I'd take the voltmeter out and rewire so it is the only item on the circuit. You can cut the plug and use it. Another issue with these older bikes are the grounding points. I have the same bike and there are only two grounds for the entire system. One from the battery to the engine, and one just forward of your regulator/rectifier. Might want to check these as well.

Agree with virgilmobile as well - add a separate voltmeter if necessary. The sense wire mod is a good one, as is doing a new 12 VDC wire through a relay to the coils. Did the sense wire before the alt mod on mine, and the coil 12 VDC supply as well.

Good luck

Cheers
"When you write the story of your life, don't let anyone else hold the pen"

Ernest

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virgilmobile
Posts: 9082
Joined: Sun Sep 19, 2010 5:39 pm
Location: Denham Springs,La.
Motorcycle: 1988 GL1500 I
Previously owned
78 GL1000
81 GL1100
82 GL1100 I
83 GL1100 I
83 GL1100 standard
84 GL 1200 I

Re: Singing those old voltmeter blues

Post by virgilmobile »

A common missed connection is the faring plug.It has all the grounds and feed wiring for the whole thing.Mine corroded through the park lamp circuit.Its tough to get at too.Below the left pocket and between the frame and faring.

rcgreg
Posts: 204
Joined: Sun Jul 10, 2011 11:46 am
Location: Creston BC Canada
Motorcycle: 1985 GL1200 Limited

Re: Singing those old voltmeter blues

Post by rcgreg »

virgilmobile wrote:
Wed Jul 05, 2017 1:01 pm
30 year old wiring,connections,faring plug,questionable grounds and a old meter meter...Hmmmm.....Leave it alone and add a simple small digital meter.Hook it to the relay mod you did to the stator sense wire.
You did this mod didn't you?

First I heard of it
I'm obviously put of touch witht he 'Mod Squad' :)

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Rednaxs60
Posts: 2353
Joined: Wed Nov 18, 2015 12:44 pm
Location: Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
Motorcycle: 1985 GL1200 LTD
1995 GL1500 SE CDN Edition
2012 Suzuki DL1000 VStrom
2008 GL1800 (sold)
Ontario 1985 GL1200 LTD (sold)

Re: Singing those old voltmeter blues

Post by Rednaxs60 »

virgilmobile wrote:
Wed Jul 05, 2017 1:54 pm
A common missed connection is the faring plug.It has all the grounds and feed wiring for the whole thing.Mine corroded through the park lamp circuit.Its tough to get at too.Below the left pocket and between the frame and faring.
Tough to get to is an understatement on an '85 LTD.
"When you write the story of your life, don't let anyone else hold the pen"

Ernest

rcgreg
Posts: 204
Joined: Sun Jul 10, 2011 11:46 am
Location: Creston BC Canada
Motorcycle: 1985 GL1200 Limited

Re: Singing those old voltmeter blues

Post by rcgreg »

Oh yes - I know of that one, a real B***h



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