Handlebar Mounted Voltmeter - Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Forum : Kawasaki VN750 Forums
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-03-2013, 02:47 PM Thread Starter
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Handlebar Mounted Voltmeter

I would love to have a handlebar mounted voltmeter (and maybe a clock or thermometer too...) but have yet to find any online.

Similar to this would be awesome - bar-mounted clock

Anybody seen anything like that? I really am not ready to start drilling holes on my bike just yet...

\m/ Jaymz \m/
SOLD! 1999 Vulcan 750 | Pics (bought 3/29/2013 with 5657 miles)
Upgrades: MF/AGM Battery|Kaw F&S Luggage Rack|Kaw F&S Windshield|NGK Iridium plugs DPR7E1X-9|Kaw F&S Saddlebag Supports & Turn Signal Relocators|River Road saddlebags
Fixes: Repainted battery cage|Replaced bent clutch lever|Replaced left headlight bracket|Splines lubed and new tires @ 6,000mi.|Sold @ 6320 miles on 10/28/2013
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-03-2013, 06:56 PM
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I had one of their clocks...but I put mine , along with a voltmeter in my "dash":
http://www.flickr.com/photos/knifema...7602277628495/

If You Are Not Sure If I Am Joking or Not....I AM !!Photos:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/knifemaker1954/sets/
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-03-2013, 07:35 PM
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I attached an oil filled round automotive one to my windshield brackets in between the speedo and tach. looks almost factory. also my H.D.stator That I put in last weekend from race-tech gave me a free stick on voltmeter that is led 10-15 volts red to amber to green.

MODS: AGM/MF battery.Rect.Black Mirrors,Smoked windshield H D brakes,Voltmeter,Backrest pack,Chrome brake cover, Chrome res. cover, Hard saddlebags red turn signal lights built in.Custom back rack.Chrome mirror dampeners,Red NGK spark plug wires,K+N air filters, Chrome windshield trim, Chrome fender trim front and rear,Gas tank chrome trim. Extra turn, stop and running led's,ss flame radiator grill, HD stator R/R Mod Low handlebars F+S engine guard, hwy pegs continental II tires,fog lights
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-03-2013, 07:38 PM
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never thought of a dash

MODS: AGM/MF battery.Rect.Black Mirrors,Smoked windshield H D brakes,Voltmeter,Backrest pack,Chrome brake cover, Chrome res. cover, Hard saddlebags red turn signal lights built in.Custom back rack.Chrome mirror dampeners,Red NGK spark plug wires,K+N air filters, Chrome windshield trim, Chrome fender trim front and rear,Gas tank chrome trim. Extra turn, stop and running led's,ss flame radiator grill, HD stator R/R Mod Low handlebars F+S engine guard, hwy pegs continental II tires,fog lights
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-12-2013, 10:15 AM
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A few riders have mounted an LED voltmeter on the bars, either a Kury, Show Chrome, or other.

Almost every MC parts site I've looked at has some version of clocks and thermometers, most are bar mount, but bar mount voltmeters are pretty scarce. The Show Chrome unit has everything on it but is the largest one you'll find. A few here have one mounted somewhere above the speedo/tach.

Show Chrome Digital 5 Function Volt Meter
http://www.compacc.com/p/Show-Chrome...d=scsho2813326

Here's two voltmeters I've been considering, both coming from Asia. This first one comes in chrome or dark purple, the chrome one seems harder to find and this one on Ebay is the best price I've found on it, not 100% sold on this seller's feedback though. At least one rider here has this same one mounted on the factory dash, pic around here somewhere and it almost looks factory:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/320563048124...84.m1423.l2649


This is one that would flush mount on the dash or bar clamp, and they've been going real cheap:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/330904165752...84.m1423.l2649

Edit: Buyer beware and use your own judgment if anyone decides to try the last digital gauge I listed, on Ebay. Some negative feedback on it yesterday.

Quote:
LCD 2.2-30V meter range not as described, refund + promise to change description
It's relisted after one sold yesterday, but the description wasn't changed. It sold for about $3.50, so it could be a little too cheap.

Last edited by Spockster; 04-16-2013 at 10:31 AM.
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-12-2013, 10:29 AM
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Silly question, but why have a volt meter? It will go down at idle and up at higher RPM. I am just missing the point I guess. Or is it to monitor the electrical system for failure?

You will know pretty quick if your electrical system fails, your battery will die.

just curious - thanks, kenny
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-12-2013, 10:41 AM
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Voltmeters are for monitoring your electrical system. Waiting for the battery to die to find out there's a problem is as useful as a gas gauge that only tells you that your low on gas seconds before you run out.

If you plan on adding ANY other electrical accessory to your bike having a voltmeter is a good idea.

I should say there's no reason if you really wanted a meter on your handlebars you couldn't just adapt one fabricating a mount for it. The one I used on my "Dash" could have easily been mounted to the bar with a bit of work...

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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-12-2013, 10:48 AM
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It lets you keep an eye on what your charging system is doing.

You might head home instead of out of town if you see your volts have plunged in the past few miles, or you would know to not use any extra lights or accessories. You could even unplug the headlight just to make it home.

I even thought about using three AC meters at the stator connection to keep an eye on that. Overkill and more connections to worry about though.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-12-2013, 11:16 AM
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KM / Sprokster, I understand it. If you are far from home, I see it as no more then totally useless. What will a voltmeter tell you other then, 'soon your bike will die'.

I was pretty sure electrical charge systems do their job or don't, there is not usually any 'on its way out' type monitoring that can be done.

I can understand though the turning around and heading home if the charge system is failed and you just left for a big ride. And you are close to home.

Do the stator / charging systems go bad that often on the 750's? That really amazes me, there should be a class action suit.

Even though the volt meter is a 'light load' it just seems counter intuitive to me personally. Lets add more electrical load to monitor the electrical system that is bound to fail with electrical load. See what I mean?

I am just not a fan. At night I can tell if my charging system is working by pulling up to a building or the car in front of me, cranking all my light bar lights and beam and check the brightness at idle and when I rev it it gets brighter, I am good to go.

On the 750, don't you guys have all kinds of dash gauges and stuff? What does all of that stuff do with a dead charging system and a dying battery? I know my cobra tach went nuts for a while with a stone dead battery, reading strange rpm's etc.. with the bike running on only the charging system. That was on my way to PA the battery croaked, we stopped for gas, I filled up and wouldn't start.

I think cheapy walmart batteries dying would be more dominant a problem then charging systems failing, in my opinion.

anyway in my case...
I pushed it, pulled the choke, and popped the clutch, asked the guys I was with - where to next, they were amazed the bike got running again, the one guy was checking his tow coverage, I told him not to.... I was not worried, I have done it before. They were like, "you should go home before your bike dies" I explained it was not dying but instead of finishing out the ride I did head home, on the way stopping for another battery and doing the roll start maneuver again haha.

Eh, you know the old saying about opinions, everybody has one. I just wanted to know if there was any reason that I would want to add a voltage monitor for my bike personally. ~ 10 years and 50,000 miles, never a problem, I think I will keep it how it is. Now watch, I have to go to NC end of this month on the bike, I bet my charging system dies on the way there, funny thing though, is the only difference will be that I know about it vs the bike just dying somewhere. And I am thinking if the bike just 'dies' somewhere I would disconnect lights, roll start and get myself to the closest shop anyway.

Just my couple a cents....

It would be neat though to have another thing up there to look at.

The LED ones can be made fairly cheaply I am sure using a micro controller with analog input and 6 digital out's.

sheesh - talk about cheap I just saw one for 4.30 + shipping, why not - right?

< 8mA current draw too.

http://dx.com/p/3-digit-voltmeter-fo...FYYw4AodJHIARw

Prolly wont do too good in weather though.

Kenny
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-12-2013, 11:28 AM
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Unfortunately, stator failure is very common.

In my case, my stator checked ok, R/R was stone dead. Just to be sure, I checked the stator at least seven times over a few weeks before ordering a MOSFET kit. Without any riding and just a couple of brief startups, the stator was dead shorted to ground by the time I installed the MOSFET.

I'm in the middle of pulling the stator right now.

Saw a few videos about people adapting car alternators to their bikes. Some Goldwings mostly but I did see it done on a VN1500.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bDshU553znU
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