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NorthEast USA Rider
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Discussion Starter #1
Help please. I did the pigtail battery jumper modification so that you don't have to take the seat off to jump the battery. I put in a new battery last year. The bike is kept on a battery tender when not in use and is always fully charged when I take off in the morning, like this morning. I drove 17 miles to work, drove home, drove to the gym, drove to get gas, then when I went to start it back up it didn't have enough juice to start. Had to wait for a nice cager soul with jumper cables to give me a jump. I tried using the pigtail modification posted on this site, but it didn't work. I had to take the bags and seat off to get to the battery. Finally got it started and drove home. After coming home and letting it sit for 10 minutes, I tried starting it again and it started fine, so the bike must be charging the battery when it's running. I checked the 30 amp fuse in the pigtail mod and it was blown. I read in the owner's manual that you should not get the bike jumped from a car battery because the higher amperage might damage the bike's electrical system. Is this true? Can you only jump a bike from another bike? Is the 30 amp fuse going to blow every time I try to jump the bike from a car's battery? And why did the battery seem to die? Thank you very much for your help.
 

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You can jump it from a car jyst be sure it isn't running. The battery doesn't hurt anything the alternator put out too much juice for a bike.
 

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I can't say for all bikes, but I have jumped several bikes (all Hondas) from cars, sometimes with the car running, and never had a problem. I also never had a fuse blow, even when I was using a 20 amp fuse up to about 10-15 years ago. Maybe your pigtail grounded to the frame?
 

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I'm betting you have a bad battery or alternator. The pig tail fuse blew when you tried to jump through it because the inrush current was very high (~100 amps) when you touched the starter button. Doesn't sound like you hurt anything but some problem is hiding. Otherwise, the battery would not have been dead.
 

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Road Name: Lethal
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I have jumped my bike a few times from a car (left the key in)......I usually just turn the car to the on position without actually starting it. After the bike starts up I take the cables off. I have to actually take the bike for a ride for it to recharge the battery...Just letting it run never works.
 

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NorthEast USA Rider
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Discussion Starter #6
I can't say for all bikes, but I have jumped several bikes (all Hondas) from cars, sometimes with the car running, and never had a problem. I also never had a fuse blow, even when I was using a 20 amp fuse up to about 10-15 years ago. Maybe your pigtail grounded to the frame?
Negative wire of pigtail is grounded directly to the battery.

I have jumped my bike a few times from a car (left the key in)......I usually just turn the car to the on position without actually starting it. After the bike starts up I take the cables off. I have to actually take the bike for a ride for it to recharge the battery...Just letting it run never works.
Well, maybe there is something to that. This morning's commute to work was a lot of stop and go, and I do have some extra running lights going all the time. The ride from work to home, though, was pretty highway all the time, not much stopping.

I'm betting you have a bad battery or alternator. The pig tail fuse blew when you tried to jump through it because the inrush current was very high (~100 amps) when you touched the starter button. Doesn't sound like you hurt anything but some problem is hiding. Otherwise, the battery would not have been dead.

Well, the battery was a Honda Battery and brand new last year. I keep it on a battery tender. How often to people find bad alternators on the VTX??
 

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Cafe Vendor
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Pull the battery and take it to Battery's Plus or Autozone or similar and have them "load" test the battery to see if it is good or has a weak cell.

You can easily check the bikes charging system also. Key off the battery should read around 13 volts DC. With the bike running you should read around 14.5 VDC give or take a little. You will need a volt meter to do this check.

As for jumping it with a car battery, like the others have said, this is easily done, my recommendation though is to play it safe and NOT have the car running.:D
 

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NorthEast USA Rider
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Discussion Starter #8
Pull the battery and take it to Battery's Plus or Autozone or similar and have them "load" test the battery to see if it is good or has a weak cell.

You can easily check the bikes charging system also. Key off the battery should read around 13 volts DC. With the bike running you should read around 14.5 VDC give or take a little. You will need a volt meter to do this check.

As for jumping it with a car battery, like the others have said, this is easily done, my recommendation though is to play it safe and NOT have the car running.:D
Thanks, Jeff. I'll have to buy a volt meter. Will have the battery load tested when I can. It really s_ _ks, is bad, to hit the start button and have a brief grunting sound when you are fully expecting the usual low rumble of the big 1800cc to spark up.

:choppersm:choppersm:choppersm:choppersm:choppersm:choppersm
 

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Thanks, Jeff. I'll have to buy a volt meter. Will have the battery load tested when I can. It really s_ _ks, is bad, to hit the start button and have a brief grunting sound when you are fully expecting the usual low rumble of the big 1800cc to spark up.

:choppersm:choppersm:choppersm:choppersm:choppersm:choppersm

You can pick up a cheap voltmeter for the type of work your going to be doing at Harbor Freight. Heck sometimes they have coupons to get a free one if you spend $10 :D, very easy for me to drop $10 there, lots of little goodies I like there.:mosh:
 

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Leaving the car running, and harming the bike is myth.
The average automobile alternator has an output of around 100 amps, full load.
The average automobile battery has between 850 to 1000 cranking amps available.
The minuscule amount that the alternator adds is negligible.
Simple put, you wont harm the bike jumping from a running car.
If there is a problem with the bike, that is going to cause a problem while jumping, it will make no difference if the car is running or not.
And lastly, juice comes in jugs, not in electrical systems... lol

If your battery is going "dead" that fast, you have a failed battery, or a problem in the charging system.
 

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NorthEast USA Rider
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Discussion Starter #11
Leaving the car running, and harming the bike is myth.
The average automobile alternator has an output of around 100 amps, full load.
The average automobile battery has between 850 to 1000 cranking amps available.
The minuscule amount that the alternator adds is negligible.
Simple put, you wont harm the bike jumping from a running car.
If there is a problem with the bike, that is going to cause a problem while jumping, it will make no difference if the car is running or not.
And lastly, juice comes in jugs, not in electrical systems... lol

If your battery is going "dead" that fast, you have a failed battery, or a problem in the charging system.
I bought the bike new (a 2006) a couple years ago. Last year I had the same problem with the original battery. I just figured the original battery had been sitting around for a few years before I bought the bike and that it was then 4 years old or so and was probably just no good anymore. As I now recall they checked the charging system (with the old battery in the bike and the bike running) at the shop last year and they said the charging system was good. Then I bought the new battery, took it home, prepared it as instructed and installed it. I was also told that if you keep the bike on a battery tender when not in use that it can prolong the life of the battery. (Plus, you always know that you are at least starting out with a fully charged battery.)
So, I can check the charging system again, but they checked it last year. Also, what do you think of keeping the bike on a battery tender like they had suggested?
Also, why is there a 30 amp in-line fuse in my jumper pig-tail mod if 100 amps are meant to go through the wire? That doesn't make sense to me.
 

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Don't know which mod you did for the Jumpers, but here is a mod I posted a few years ago. http://www.vtxcafe.com/showthread.php?t=17392

I don't have any fuse inline for my mod. If I connect something that needs protection, then I have a fuse installed on that cable (ie: cig lighter plug etc)

As for the new battery, I have bought more than one battery in my life that was bad from the factory. One for my VTX was a sealed cell battery and several for various vehicles over the years. It doesn't hurt to get the battery checked.
 

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NorthEast USA Rider
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Discussion Starter #13
Don't know which mod you did for the Jumpers, but here is a mod I posted a few years ago. http://www.vtxcafe.com/showthread.php?t=17392

I don't have any fuse inline for my mod. If I connect something that needs protection, then I have a fuse installed on that cable (ie: cig lighter plug etc)

As for the new battery, I have bought more than one battery in my life that was bad from the factory. One for my VTX was a sealed cell battery and several for various vehicles over the years. It doesn't hurt to get the battery checked.
Jeff- Yours is the mod that I did. I think somewhere along the line someone must have suggested putting a fuse in the positive wire, so I did. I guess I can just put in a new red wire without the fuse. Make sense? -Thanks. Also, I will have the battery checked. Maybe it's still under warrantee from the Honda Shop? I'll check.
 

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Jeff- Yours is the mod that I did. I think somewhere along the line someone must have suggested putting a fuse in the positive wire, so I did. I guess I can just put in a new red wire without the fuse. Make sense? -Thanks. Also, I will have the battery checked. Maybe it's still under warrantee from the Honda Shop? I'll check.
All mods usually get tweaked here and there LOL. My PDB mod the big debate is whether to put an inline relay or not. To each their own:cool: I didn't fuse my pigtail mod because the primary purpose was to enable "jumping" and or "charging" the battery without having to remove the seat and battery cover to gain access to the terminals.

Since then i have also used it as a remote power source and have a pigtail with a cigarette lighter receptacle to charge my cell phone in my saddlebag. that pigtail has a fuse on it to protect my device.

I also modified the pigtail for my Schumacher Smart Charger to plug into my access point.

Simpleman44---I have not heard any issues with people using reputable brand smart chargers/tenders like "Battery Tender" brand or Schumacher. I have heard of some issues with the "off" brand stuff.
 

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NorthEast USA Rider
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Discussion Starter #16
Thanks, Jeff. The only thing I would want to use the pigtail for is jumping the battery, so I will definitely remove the fuse (it's not in the pigtail part itself, but it's in the separate part that has the alligator clips on it, shows you how dumb I am). I have a Kury Powerpoint on the handlebars for plugging in my GPS and it can also be used to charge my cell phone, while I'm riding if necessary. I have my battery tender connection plug hanging out slightly above my left side cover so when I ride into the garage it's very easy to just connect it to the tender.

Someone was right about Harbor Freight having good prices on voltage meters. They have them for $5 !

I have the power distribution mod as well, and that is working out great so far. I have the battery tender connected to it since there were too many wires connected directly to the battery terminals, and it has seemed to work fine that way, until now??
 

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Just leting your bike run wont charge the battery,bike must be under load (running) to charge the battery,defeating the purpose by just leting the bike idle.
 

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NorthEast USA Rider
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Discussion Starter #18
"willies54" posted this on another thread about a year and a half ago:

"There is a procedure in the maintenance manual to check for discharge (short) in the system. With the key "OFF" disconnect the negative terminal from the battery and connect a multi-meter in series between the negative terminal and the lead. with the key off look for amperage (current) flow. Max allowable is 0.1 mA. Ref section 16-6. Good luck!"

This sounds like it may be worth trying in addition to getting the battery checked and checking the charging voltage as previously suggested.
 

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NorthEast USA Rider
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Discussion Starter #19
Load Testing Battery

In case anyone is interested, I found this on-line procedure for load-testing your battery, and would like to hear any comments/opinions about it. If my charging system checks out OK I may try this instead of taking the battery out to AutoZone or wherever for load testing.

"How to Load Test a Battery
I have been asked now and then about how one goes about load testing a battery. If you do not own a Load Tester (Harbor Freight sells them), then you must improvise, which is certainly OK. The load testing procedure for a formal Load Tester (or, improvised method) is to FIRST be sure the battery is fully charged....a terminal voltage minimum 14 before disconnecting/turning-off the charger, is a good voltage to use.
Let the battery sit an hour or two.
Connect the load tester and IMMEDIATELY adjust it such that when it will provide a load of 1/2 of the battery's rated CCA. If you do not know that value, then use THREE times the rated ampere-hours (AH) of the battery). Apply the load quickly, monitoring the voltage with a digital meter at the battery terminals. Be careful of the connections, the load is great, and you want the battery terminals, NOT the load tester terminals connection point, to be where the voltmeter is attached. That avoids errors. 15 seconds of the load applied should show, load tester still connected, a minimum of 9.8 volts, if the battery temperature is approximately 20°C.....this is approximately normal pleasant room temperature (68°F).
If you do NOT own a load tester, the normal quickie way of doing this job, and it is perfectly adequate a method, is to remove the fuel or ignition (ground it properly) from the engine so the engine will not start. Charge and then monitor the battery voltage as above. Crank the engine for 10 to 20 measured seconds. At the end of the time period, still cranking, note the voltage....again, 9.8 is the minimum."

Check out this link and please let me know if it makes sense for the VTX. Thank you.

http://www.ehow.com/video_2330193_check-motorcycle-battery.html
 

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You know Tom after replying to you in this thread and your other thread about your battery problems, you would think I would not pull a Bonehead and leave my key on completely killing my battery:banghead::banghead::banghead::banghead::banghead::banghead:

My Pigtail Jumper worked great though.:D

No no I didn't accidentally drain my battery, I did it on purpose to be sure my Pigtail still works, yeah that's it, that's my story and I'm sticking to it:cool:
 
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