Voltage - Charge Meter - Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Forum : Kawasaki VN750 Forums
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post #1 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-20-2011, 10:42 AM Thread Starter
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Voltage - Charge Meter

I am looking to add a meter to my 2000 Vulcan 750 and was wondering if any one has done this already. I am interested in what meter was used and the functionality of the setup. I saw a multiple function meter unit online and it looked pretty good with a clock, temperature, and such. Only problem was when I read some reviews from past users they complained that it wasn't water proof. After the first drizzle it shorted out and that was the end. I am not sure how a company can advertise an item for motorcycles that isn't water proof. Maybe there are some places that never get any rain at all and they never wash there motorcycles. In fact one picture on line showed the unit mounted on the fuel tank inside a plastic sandwich bag. It was a nice look if you are into rat bikes I guess. I want the added meter just to watch over my charging system as I am adding driving lights and twin rectangular headlights. I have switched over to LED bulbs where ever possible and the draw should be within the proper limits but I want to know for sure while on the road so as not to be surprised several hours away from home. I also want to add a power outlet for my mini air compressor if a flat happens with my bike or a fellow rider. Looking forward to any advice on available options regarding voltage - charge meters.
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post #2 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-20-2011, 01:43 PM
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I use the "heads up" LED monitor..... works fine......
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post #3 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-20-2011, 02:19 PM
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There have been various analog, digital and LED voltage meters mounted on the vn750 since I joined this board almost 3 years ago.

Some have used analog gauges from Tractor Supply with a look similar to the OEM gauges.
Here is a link with some pics and ideas:

Here is a link to a Kuryakyn LED meter on Daniel Meyer`s Valkyrie:


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post #4 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-21-2011, 03:59 AM
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LED guage


After I replaced my stator I installed the Kuryakn chrome L.E.D. Gauge. Its great I installed mine on a L-bracket and put it right above my fuel gauge and wired right into the headlight. I find it real easy to look down check fuel and meter. Haven't had any problems in the two years I've had mine. Here is a link http://www.kuryakyn.com/Products/872/LED-Battery-Gauge
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post #5 of 26 (permalink) Old 06-18-2011, 12:26 PM
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hows this one???


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post #6 of 26 (permalink) Old 06-19-2011, 06:38 AM
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looks good
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post #7 of 26 (permalink) Old 06-19-2011, 09:04 AM
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I have the multi function voltage gauge that you are speaking of made by Show Chrome or Big Bike Parts. Its about 30.00 and is always found in the "GOLDWING" section of Dennis Kirk or J&P Cycles......It is a great gauge and I have had mine for over a year and a half........but they ARE correct.....it is not waterproof.....now mine has not shorted out from water ...but water will get behind the face glass and make it hard to read and make the clock run too fast. I just fixed it by building a lexan cover for it to keep the rain/dew/and car wash water off of it. I just like having the Voltage.....Clock.....and Outside Temp gauges all on the bike.....the Outside temp gauge....yeah.....you know when it's warm or freezing on the bike with out that.....but the other two are very nice to have.
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post #8 of 26 (permalink) Old 06-20-2011, 02:31 PM
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The Heads-Up LED voltmeter that dariv linked to is similar to the BackOFF LED voltmeter that I've seen around (though the lack of info on that page makes it hard to say if it's the exact same thing).

It won't tell you exactly what your voltage is down to a tenth of a volt like some digital meters will, but it will tell you the condition of your electrical system at a glance:
Flashing Green (Above 15.25V)
Steady Green (12.9V-15.24V)
Steady Amber (12.6V-12.8V)
Steady Red (12V-12.5V)
Flashing Red (Below 12V)

I usually don't really care if my voltage is 12.6V or 12.7V. I do care if it's ~11V vs. ~14V, and the multi-color LED tells me if the voltage is "good", "a little off", or "really bad". If I do need to know the exact voltage for some precise troubleshooting, I've got a multimeter.

You can tuck the control box away somewhere, and only have to mount a single LED somewhere visible. It's a minimalist solution that I feel provides "good enough" feedback on the status of your electrical system. Especially compared to buying a full analog gauge that matches the stock gauges and fabbing up some sort of mount for it.

It can even be better than a digital gauge in some situations. On a standard LCD display, there's only a couple segments different between 11.0 and 14.0. With this LED voltmeter, the difference would be a flashing red LED vs. a solid green LED. Your brain doesn't have to take the (tiny bit of) time to see and process the numbers, you just know instantly that green is good and flashing red is bad.

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post #9 of 26 (permalink) Old 06-20-2011, 02:42 PM
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Yes, but a digital gauge...and by this I mean one that displays "digits" tells you exactly what your voltage is, and to me is the most precise. Cause if it reads 12.7 you know that means..... 12.7 ...not 12.6 or 12.8...


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post #10 of 26 (permalink) Old 06-20-2011, 06:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Knifemaker View Post
Yes, but a digital gauge...and by this I mean one that displays "digits" tells you exactly what your voltage is, and to me is the most precise. Cause if it reads 12.7 you know that means..... 12.7 ...not 12.6 or 12.8.......
It's not a question of precision........ obviously a readout in 0.1 volts is more precise that a tricolor LED. The point is, it is easier/quicker to process a color that a 3-digit number on a display readout.
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