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Discussion Starter #1
So last night I was riding home and I started to have some issues. About half way home (about 10 miles on the bike) the engine started to stutter causing random RPM spikes, from about 4k to 6k, and a really rough ride, at the same time the lights on the bike would all dim. If I revved the engine up a bit higher, it would seem to clear up for a minute before starting up again, or if i shifted to a higher gear it seemed to give me a few minutes of problem free cruising. As I was about 5 minutes from home I started braking as i came to an intersection all the power on the bike just completely cut out and the bike died.

I've already checked the battery and it has come up fine so I'm really looking for where else I should start looking to figure this out.
 

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Sounds like a dead battery and not charging, but could be a short or bad switch.
 

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..have a vulcan good day!
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Check your grounds, your stator and R/R and.....your ignition switch.
x2

If all above seems ok, next look into possible POOGS.

hth

:smiley_th
 

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2014 KLR 650!
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3,361 Posts
Its the switch i bet. Open and clean the ignition switch puck under the key. No need to take it all the way off. You will have enough room to sand lightly the copper and slightly stretch thecsprings. Three if i remember. Careful as the springscand ball bearing can get away from you. Then if you break the plastic clips lije i did, a little superglue and a tie wrap the really cinch it up under the key works great.
 

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1986 VN750
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3,255 Posts
I've had a loose ground cause the exact same issues. Simple stuff first!
 

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..have a vulcan good day!
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4,508 Posts
Simple stuff first!

x2

:smiley_th
 

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Discussion Starter #8
So looks like my multimeter had gone belly-up... I went to use it for some work on my computer and noticed that it seemed to be reading everything incorrectly, specifically it was reading 10-15% high. Borrowed a different one from a neighbor and it looks like I need to start at a new battery, only got 11.2v on it with a confirmed working meter as opposed to the 12.4 my old meter gave me.

Looks like I need to start there and then see if I actually have any other issues.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I had a little bit of time to take a closer look at the bike today and I found at least a couple issues, the ground had broken and the terminal connecting to the negative pole of the battery had come loose and wasn't getting a good connection. I fixed the break in the ground, soldered the wires back together and used some heat shrink to seal it, and I have a terminal back on the wire to the battery. I am borrowing a battery from a co-worker at the moment to test any work that I do. Beyond that I also took the time to clean the ignition switch today.

At this point I get electricity when I turn the key but when I try to start the bike It cuts out...If I turn the key off and on again I get power again.

I haven't had the time to dig into the bike any more yet (regulator/stator) because of work and I likely won't have a chance to do much more than I have until next weekend because of work and some classes that I am currently taking but I was wondering if I should keep looking in the same direction at this point or if I should start looking to the starter.

By the way, thanks for the point about checking the ground, probably wouldn't have thought about it until I had the bike completely torn apart if it wasn't said.
 

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Crowley
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1,263 Posts
Check also your connection at the 6 pin connector between the rectifier and the wiring harness.

Also, take off the left side neck area cover (between the front of the gas tank and the handlebars) and check all of those plugs - I found the brown plug corroded, and cleaned it up.

This, in addition to cutting the rectifier connector and individually spade connecting each of the six wires, helped me with almost the same issue you are having.

Take note - is your tachometer dropping rapidly (instantly) to zero when it dies? Does it blip up and down a bit when it's stuttering? That's the problem I had.... Still working on it too.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
The cables are clean, and the connections are tight but I can take another look when it is light out to make sure that I'm not overlooking anything.

As to what the tach was doing, when the bike would stutter it would jump quite a bit and when the power cut it did drop instantly to zero but that could have just been part of having lost power completely.
 

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Crowley
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1,263 Posts
If it had been a mechanical failure (out of gas and died) the rpms would have dropped steadily. The instant zero tells me that your problem is electrical, and it seems to be the same problem I had.

I don't know if this did anything, but pull the side bolts off the gas tank and remove the left side neck cover.
Unbolt the coil, and disconnect the spark plug wires from the plugs, and pull the coil out of the way.
Check those connections in there - my brown plug was heavily corroded, and I cleaned it.

That plug, and my r/r plug mod, and my problem seems to have to gone away.

I'm still not convinced it could be the key, but I'm Eagar to hear what others say and where this goes.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Well, got the bike up and running again today. After digging into the wiring a bit i found a couple of slightly corroded connections to the stator and the r/r as well as a couple of blade style connectors that had gotten extremely loose. Cleaned up the corrosion and replaced the connectors that had gotten loose with new ones and the bike is running well again, at least it ran well for the 15 minutes that I had it out. I'm not going to risk taking the bike to work yet in case i missed something because I really don't want to have to get it towed home again but this weekend I'll be able to take it out for a nice long ride to make sure that everything is running smoothly again.

Thanks for the help guys.
 
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