Additional lights kill the stator?


Information and questions on GL1200 Goldwings (1984-1987)
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dougindixie
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Additional lights kill the stator?

Post by dougindixie » Wed Aug 07, 2019 10:55 pm



Thinking about adding a couple of aux lights to the front to see and be seen and have been told that they will kill my stator. Even if they are LED or is this a false statement?



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Andy Cote
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Re: Additional lights kill the stator?

Post by Andy Cote » Thu Aug 08, 2019 5:36 am

The dreaded three yellow wires!! Oh no!!!

The system was not designed for extra loads.

The system was not designed for 30 life.

It will fail eventually.

I saw it on the internet so it must be true.

There are many threads regarding the GL1200 charging system. Adding a couple lights, even LEDs, could possibly be the straw that breaks the back but you also replace all the current bulbs with LED to reduce the load. Certainly a higher load on any electrical system can increase risk of failure. As can exposure to a corrosive environment. Or even a faulty battery. I would read the various threads on this and then inspect your harness and connectors for corrosion or signs of overheating.

The best preventative maintenance is to replace the main charging harness with heavier wire and fewer but properly terminated connectors. There is some info on DIY or you can purchase a new harness from companies such as Electrical Connection.

Alternatively, go ahead and do a so-called poorboy conversion to a self contained alternator. Or at least buy the parts and have them on standby for a potential failure.

Oh yeah, install a voltmeter to give some piece of mind regarding an impending failure. Not perfect but better than operating blind.
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Previously: GL1200 standard, GL1200 Interstate, GL1500 Goldwing, GL1500 Valkyrie Standard, 2000 Valkyrie Interstate, many other Hondas

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DenverWinger
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Re: Additional lights kill the stator?

Post by DenverWinger » Thu Aug 08, 2019 6:24 am

Additional lighting will NOT put any additional load on the stator, the permanent-magnet type alternator used in the 4 cylinder wings runs at FULL-OUTPUT constantly, any additional power not needed by bike, accessories and charging the battery is shunted to ground by the regulator. Total stator output is determined only by engine RPMs

So an added accessory actually means the regulator is shunting less power to ground.

What can happen though, if too many accessories are added, the reduced total output of the stator at low RPMs may not be enough to keep up with demand and the battery has to make up the difference.

What kills stators is bad/burnt/shorted connections ("The Dreaded Three Yellow Wires"), or shorted diodes in the rectifier, otherwise they are pretty bullet-proof.

Go ahead and add your lights. Especially if LED, won't be enough of an additional load to make much difference. May not want to run them in stop/go traffic where you are doing a lot of idling.

You can check that with a voltmeter on the battery, if you are showing over 12.7v with the lights on at idle RPM, you aren't loading the battery any and the stator is carrying the full load. Voltage will increase to as much as 15v as you rev the engine, this is normal.
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CrystalPistol
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Re: Additional lights kill the stator?

Post by CrystalPistol » Thu Aug 08, 2019 9:59 am

The stator is a stationary winding around pole or poles which a rotor passes a magnet past faster with increased engine RPM, that's all. There is nothing else there, it's dumb. What fails is the insulating coating on that wire winding the poles or a solder joint, broke wire, etc. Lights will not kill a stator. It puts out what it puts out, and what is not needed gets shunted to ground by the Regulator / Rectifier and is disposed of as heat. It lives in a hot vibration prone environment.

Your extra lights will ease the load on the R / R as they will absorb some of the excess and the most they will harm is if they do add load to wiring harness / connectors from the battery, stator, ignition switch, etc transporting the current. As long as you provide for adequate power supply line, like dedicated wiring from battery, switch, relay, etc. …
… you won't add to electrical loads of the bike's wiring harness.
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Ghostt
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Re: Additional lights kill the stator?

Post by Ghostt » Thu Aug 08, 2019 5:23 pm

My own personal experience with older bikes using a shunt R/R is when you convert the lighting to mostly LEDs is the unused power causes the shunt R/R to dump said power, which causes a lot of heat it's trying to get rid of, this causes it to fail even quicker, especially on old units.

I converted almost of the lights on my GW to LEDs, and noticed the R/R was getting very warm, if not hot. As I've done on my other bikes I converted the R/R to a MOSFET R/R. They are better in every way to a shunt one. If your not familiar with MOSFET R/Rs, you should do some research on them.

As I said I've done with upgrade to mine, and friends bikes, with all positive results, I've done how-to write ups on this subject.


One of the first things I did was upgrade the 3 yellow wire connector, to a modern style, as mine was showing the signs of going bad.

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Rednaxs60
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Re: Additional lights kill the stator?

Post by Rednaxs60 » Thu Aug 08, 2019 9:11 pm

Agree with the Ghostt. An RR upgrade is a good idea, a new shunt RR using MOSFET internal components is good, but an upgrade to a series RR versus a shunt RR is the best idea. MOSFET is just an electronic internal component replacing the older style SCR and such. It has been around for a long time, but has now started to be used in the motorcycle industry. You can get an RR that uses the MOSFET technology, but still be a shunt RR.

Make sure the stator connector is clean and in good condition. If not replace with a suitable high amp connector, 40 amp is good, or solder the wires.

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CrystalPistol
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Re: Additional lights kill the stator?

Post by CrystalPistol » Fri Aug 09, 2019 3:23 pm

And … there are two connections OEM from stator to R/R, one is the 3 yellow wire one down beside battery on your left as facing the battery, another at the gang plug where R/R plugs into harness. Check there too for signs of excessive heat.

I'll also add here … that when I replaced my 1200's stator … I ran three yellow wires from the then partially melted plug near the battery up to R/R using automotive grade stranded copper 12 gauge wire … but the three wires that mate with them from the upstairs gang plug at / nearer R/R are not copper, more like steel stranded. I bypassed the plug up there by cutting & splicing them to the 3 yellow 12 gauge ones, found out after cutting, they didn't like my Kester solder so well, even with flux core. I cut three short pieces 3/16" brass tube, slid a piece on each yellow wire, wrapped (interlaced) the copper to steel really well, slid the brass tube up over splice, crimped with crimpers, then I added solder and taped the splices up really well. I left the other several wires from R/R to gang plug and bike's harness as they carry less load.
I maintained a plug down beside the battery, I just used a new plug kit from Honda, opened crimps in terminal to remove pigtail and add my 12 ga. wires, soldered and crimped to wires where connect to terminals, reinserted terminals into plug housing and packed the plug with dielectric grease and kept it wrapped secure from any possible effects of battery vapors. I inspected it and rewrapped at oil change times, it remained pristine.
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Ghostt
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Re: Additional lights kill the stator?

Post by Ghostt » Fri Aug 09, 2019 7:26 pm

FYI

For those whom are looking for a plug-n-play MOSFET R/R, Rick's Motorsport Electrics has one for an excellent price, not to mention excellent craftsmanship, and customer service

https://ricksmotorsportelectrics.com/Ho ... or-10_105H

As I said earlier, my 3 wire connector was getting bad, and I replaced it with a Metripack 280 Series Three Conductor Set,











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oldishwinger
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Re: Additional lights kill the stator?

Post by oldishwinger » Wed Aug 14, 2019 9:51 pm

50 watt hologen bulbs each side are too much and may cause a discharge, 35 watt hologen on each side seem to be ok, but need to be watched.keep in mind the system isnt really designed for extra but if prudent its possible to add bits and pieces. if you do add, install a volt meter to keep an eye on things.

LED are the way to go the power used is very small for great lighting keep in mind some can cause static on radios and cbs etc.

ultimately though, in my humble opinion, a poor boy conversion helps immensely for extra lighting

saw these on ebay no idea about them but its an interesting concept

https://www.ebay.com/itm/1-pair-Car-8LE ... 8GQX1lTDsw



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