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Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Chandler, Arizona
I've always kept my VN750s mechanically and electrically stock, except for the manual cam chain tensioners on the '02, The first one, a new '93, lasted past 80,000 miles and was still running and charging fine when I sold it. The second one, also new, had a stator failure around 83,000 miles. I replaced the stator with a TPE rewound unit. Then the upper rear cam chain failed at just over 108,000 miles. The cam chain failure does not surprise me given the mileage. The VN750 has a nightmare of a cam chain system. I have also had 2 other bike fail due to broken cam chains. A chain is always going to be the weakest link in an engine, even if it only has one. I believe a cam chain should be considered a maintenance item, and the engine should be designed so it can be replaced fairly easily.
As for the stator failures, 80,000+ miles for a stator is not bad. Stators actually fail on most bikes before that. A stator failure should not be a big deal. The VN750 was not designed so it could be easily replaced. That is the big issue. Car alternators on the other hand, can last a lot longer. But they are a completely different design, one which I think should be used on motorcycles. A stator puts out full power all the time, whether it is needed or not. The R/R has to dispose of unused current. This generates heat in both the stator and R/R. IMO, the answer is to control the output of the stator based on the load placed on it. That has been the way it is done on cars forever. We have all this modern technology on new bikes, but are still using electrical technology from the early 20th century, and tire technology from the 1940s.
I am a motorcyclist, NOT a biker.
1997 Vulcan 750, purchased about a week ago
2006 Sportster 1200 Low
2013 Royal Enfield Bullet 500, converted to carb
2001 Yamaha XT225, heavily modified
2004 Honda Rebel 250
1979 Vespa P200E
2002 Vulcan 750 parts bike
1994 Yamaha XT225 parts bike