Headlight bulbs keep breaking - Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Forum : Kawasaki VN750 Forums
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Where does this wire go?
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-31-2010, 12:24 PM Thread Starter
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Question Headlight bulbs keep breaking

I recently had some problems with my 92 VN750. It was running very sluggish, not much power at all and the engine would kill often while riding. I ended up replacing the spark plugs (I found out the old ones were the wrong size), I rewired the 3 stator wires because I had problems with them melting so I used a heavier gauge wire to connect them. At first I only twisted the wires and taped them up with electrical tape. This seemed to work as my bike ran better than ever. Then two days later on my way to work my headlight went out and the bike started sputtering and losing power like it had been doing before. I ended up using wirenuts on the 3 stator wires and taping them up really good with electric tape. I also replaced the headlight bulb because I noticed the elements connecting the springs to the filaments were gone. One odd thing about the new headlight was that the low beams seemed to be brighter than the hi beams, not sure why. After this my bike rode better than ever, again, for about 3 days. Now this morning I had the same exact problem happen. The headlight went out and the bike started sputtering and losing power again. I haven't checked the headlight or wires yet but i'm certain the bulb is shot just like the last one was. Any suggestions on what is causing my headlight bulb to keep breaking and the bike to sputter and lose power when this happens?
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-31-2010, 03:07 PM
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lance or slim will prob chime in on this but sounds like your r/r is going bad. what is the condition of your battery. usually if the stator wires are cooking the stator is too. over charging will cause headlights to blow. you might want to check the entire electrical system. battery regulator rectifier and stator. check the vulcan verses. and the beefing up the charging system thread. hope this helps


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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-31-2010, 03:08 PM
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I have several theories. 1 you have a sever charging problem. 2 you touched the glass part of the bulb. 3 your RLU isnt working
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-01-2010, 09:38 AM Thread Starter
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I made sure not to touch the glass on the bulb when I replaced it after the first bulb went out so that's not it. The battery is good, i'm getting a charge of 13+ with the engine on. How can I check the RLU?
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-01-2010, 10:14 AM
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May have nothing to do with the headlight issue, but do the 3 stator wires some good and SOLDER THEM!! Just twisting them together with wire nuts is no way to get good current flow.

Also, check in the headlight bucket to see if there may be some wires grounding out.
As tight as things are in there, I wouldn't be surprised if something has rubbed through the insulation on a wire or two.


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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-01-2010, 11:20 AM
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Quote:
One odd thing about the new headlight was that the low beams seemed to be brighter than the hi beams, not sure why.
Have you checked that you do not actually have both filaments on when the low beam is on?
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-01-2010, 11:33 AM Thread Starter
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I have a new bulb I can put on and check the filaments when I get home. I will have to wait until this weekend to solder the stator wires since I have no clue where my solder is and will have to buy a new one.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-01-2010, 03:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slimvulcanrider View Post
I have several theories. 1 you have a sever charging problem. 2 you touched the glass part of the bulb. 3 your RLU isnt working
My understanding is that an oily fingerprint weakens the glass bulb during the heating/cooling cycles, and eventually the the glass breaks. nekro only mentions the electrical element burning out, not the glass breaking, so I don`t think slim`s theory #2 applies in this case.

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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-05-2010, 04:05 PM Thread Starter
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I hadn't had a chance to check the filaments on the low beams and the stator wires, but i'm going to get a new solder today and solder the wires and i'll also check the headlight.
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-05-2010, 04:37 PM
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Here's some slightly more serious advice, thought the others are on the right general path..

1st: use the electrical tape on household problems, like muzzling a yapping dog. For vehicle wires, use shrink tubing on each wire. Not the cheap Chino stuff from Radio Shack, go to Napa or AutoZone or similar because it's heavier and more resistant to getting soft from engine heat.

2nd: measure the voltage and current drop across the individual high and low beam connectors at the headlight connector. If you don't have the proper instruments and know how..STOP..and find someone that does. Do the checks at idle and at steady rpms up to at least 4,000, not just blipping the throttle. You need good continuous readings.

3rd: check the resistance against the factory values for the stator. Do this before you re-solder the wiring since they are already cut. In any case, do the measurements with the stator disconnected from the rest of the harness.

4th Make sure the r/r rlu regulator is WELL grounded. Check the mounts and bolts, make sure rust/corrosion isn't hiding. Check your connectors for any breaks or gaarbaage that may have found it's way inside.

5th Make sure you're not using those cheap Chino/Taiwan bulbs. The ratings are pretty bogus and the resistance is usually way off. This cause voltage/amperage/load problems the reg can't handle.

Good Luck.
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