BMW K bikes (Bricks)

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1Back to top Go down    none lead-acid battery options for bricks on Thu Dec 08, 2016 11:21 pm

Beamer

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Hi,

some time ago I found a good thread here suggesting more modern technology batteries that could be used on K-bikes but I can't find it now.

With the cold weather coming I'm close to not starting in the mornings and need to get on top of this.

Thanks for anyone who can remind me where that is ( or make a suggestion here ).

    

BobT

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The old 24, or was it 28, amp huge lead acid battery is 40 year old technology. I am now running the K100 16v with ABS, on a Yuasa YTX14 amp Gel (might be AGM) battery, it is about a quarter of the weight and size of the original and weighs around 3.5 kg compared to twice over that for the original.
There is no need for and overflow pipe as they are sealed, and no problem should the bike fall over for the same reason.
I have a lithium on my Ducati that weighs in at 600 grams and has no problem turning the big twin over but i would not use one on the K as they can be slow when cold.
The Yuasa YTX14 has 200 CCA (Cold Cranking Amps) which I believe will be about the same as the original wet big battery for the early K100s.
The K1100 had a smaller battery fitted for no other reason apart from that battery technology had changed by then.

    

Chocolate

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Hello!
Many Batteries fit in a K, just check the original size.
Besides the non acid batteries are always smaler.

In Germany many K rider use the Kung Long WP 18 ore 22ah
18 ah is perfect. This is the cheapest and Long lasting Batterie on the market. I use it for years in all my bikes.

Cheers

KUNG LONG WP18-12 SEALED LEAD ACID - AGM - VRLA BATTERY


__________________________________________________
Only a few activities make me experience my senses in a way motorcycle riding does, it is like swimming in the nude in a river.
K75 BA/1992 ABS, K75 BA/1991 noABS, Ducati, Mobylette M1/1973
Pictures:Me my bike and I
    

Beamer

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Thanks for tip. I think there was some discussion of LiFe batteries in the previous discussion and some specific recommendations. I thought I had it marked but can't find it now.

    

Dai

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I would have recommended the Motobatt AGM, but I just bought one for the 1000SP I'm building and the battery is buggered.


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'83 K100 upgraded to K100RS spec
Others...
'78 Moto Guzzi 850-T3, '79 Moto Guzzi 850-T3 California,'93 Moto Guzzi 1100ie California,
'03 Suzuki Blandit GSF600SK3 (NFS any more because wifey has claimed it)
    

RicK G

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The lithium batteries are not LiFe (lithium Iron) but Lithium Ion which are a very different kettle of fish.
The whole terminology is a bit misleading considering that just about all batteries us an Ion exchange to produce the power.
The lithium ion battery does not form the debilitating memory that a lithium Iron battery does.
I have had very good service from a Motobatt MBTX30U, about 7 years from the just past one.


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If everything seems under control then you aint goin fast enough:- Mario Andretti
Bikes 1986 K100RT, 1993 K1100 LT, 1994 K1100 LT, 1993 K75 RT, 1996 K75RT, 1986 K75 GS, 1979 Z1300 Kawasaki X 2 & 1976 SR 500 Yamaha for now
    

Crazy Frog

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Beamer wrote:Hi,

some time ago I found a good thread here suggesting more modern technology batteries that could be used on K-bikes but I can't find it now.
Thanks for anyone who can remind me where that is ( or make a suggestion here ).
On the portal page, in the Forum Google search box, type Battery.
It will return a list of all the topics about battery. Very Happy


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1986 k75, 1985 K100rt, 1985 K100rt/EML sidecar.
    

Beamer

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Thank CF , that is what I did before posting but having read about ten threads and not found the one in question I thought it may be quicker to ask.

The ref. that Rick just gave rings a bell and I think he was on that thread so I'll try searching using that.

That may even be the one I was pricing up last time.

Thanks Rick.

    

Crazy Frog

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Beamer wrote:Thank CF , that is what I did before posting but having read about ten threads and not found the one in question I thought it may be quicker to ask.
Tip:
When searching the forum with Google, it not only search on the tiles, but it search on the content of postings. For example, if you type lithium + battery, you would refine the search to posts containing the 2 words.


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1986 k75, 1985 K100rt, 1985 K100rt/EML sidecar.
    

Point-Seven-five

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My personal preference is for absorbed glass mat (AGM) batteries. As mentioned above they have good cranking amps, smaller size and won't leak acid when tilted. They are maintenance free which means that you don't have to top off the water which is a pain in the butt on K bikes. They're more cost effective than lithium, and don't have the reputation that lithium has for starting fires.

Right now I have three of them in my bricks, two Scorpions and an Odyssey. The Scorpions are Chinese and have been flawless for the past three years and 40,000 miles. The Odyssey is the gold standard among brick riders and has an excellent reputation, the Odyssey in my K75S is 5 years old and is still going strong.


__________________________________________________
Present:
1994 K75RT
1994 K75S
1992 K100RS

Past:
1982 Honda FT500
1979 Honda XR185
1977 Honda XL125
1974 Honda XL125
1972 OSSA Pioneer 250
1968 Kawasaki 175
    

brickrider2

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I have come to think of battery and oil threads as very similar, in that recommendations vary widely and it's virtually impossible for the layman to sort out the truth from the fanciful. My experience with the Scorpion has been dismal. A three-month old Scorpion battery died of an apparent internal short and stranded me hundreds of miles from civilization two years ago. Odysse batteries have been an interesting experience. My Laverda has had one installed for about 7-8 years now. It's simple amazing how long that battery can sit without loosing its charge. Other identical Odysee batteries have died within two years. I've used the same charger on both, with really different outcomes.
What's one to do? Ya pays yer money and takes yer chances, I guess. Rolling Eyes
However, one thing is clear to me. Acid flooded batteries in my bikes are a thing of the past.

    

Motorbike Mike

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brickrider2 wrote:I have come to think of battery and oil threads as very similar, in that recommendations vary widely and it's virtually impossible for the layman to sort out the truth from the fanciful. My experience with the Scorpion has been dismal. A three-month old Scorpion battery died of an apparent internal short and stranded me hundreds of miles from civilization two years ago. Odysse batteries have been an interesting experience. My Laverda has had one installed for about 7-8 years now. It's simple amazing how long that battery can sit without loosing its charge. Other identical Odysee batteries have died within two years. I've used the same charger on both, with really different outcomes.
What's one to do? Ya pays yer money and takes yer chances, I guess. Rolling Eyes
However, one thing is clear to me. Acid flooded batteries in my bikes are a thing of the past.
I agree with everything BR2 says above.
I too have had differing (bad) experiences with the same battery on different bikes. Above all else I learned that the best way to look after a battery is NEVER EVER let it go flat if at all possible.

I've got one of these on my Cobas Flying Brick and you'd think the plastic case was empty. It has loads of power, cranks strong and for every when needed.

https://www.ballistic-batteries.com/product_info.php?products_id=425

    

BobT

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In my opinion the only reason to use a Lithium battery is to save weight and that is something that just does nothing for a K100. You save the weight of a couple of litres of fuel by fitting one and who is going to feel that difference on a K100?
I tried to watch the video on the link, the one where the chap has a nice red battery strapped into his two wheeled tractor, but all he was comparing the Lithium battery to was a lead acid wet battery, you don't find those on bikes these days. It would be much better if he was hones and did comparisons with a Gel or AGM battery.
I think that Lithium has a place, but not on a K. I have one on my Ducati, but that weighs in at about 160 kg and nearly 140 bhp - I can't feel the weight reduction of 3 kgs! I doubt if I would notice the difference on my K with 260 kg and 100 bhp.
If you have a bike with an alarm or any device that soaks a small amount of power when it is garaged then a Lithium is not for you either.

    

Motorbike Mike

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I say black, he says white-so what's new there?
I wasn't suggesting that one was fitted to Beamers K it was just showing what I've had fitted to my K track bike and had 2 years good service from the battery. Rolling Eyes

    

Point-Seven-five

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Based on my experience as a mechanic in a marina for 10 years where our customers owned boats with a total of 400-500 batteries of every type and size from every possible supplier, my take on batteries is that proper maintenance and storage is more important than how much you spend or what brand you buy.

A cheap battery that is KEPT CHARGED will easily outperform and outlast the most expensive battery that is allowed to discharge during storage and left in a discharged state for long periods(more than two or three DAYS). NEVER store a battery that has anything less than a full charge on it. Storing a battery that even has a 90% charge on it will seriously damage it's ability to hold a charge later when returned to service.

Batteries need to be kept clean, especially around the terminals. Dirt will allow small amounts of current to bleed off over long periods of storage. When stored, any battery will respond well to an overnight trickle charge at least once a month. Even better is if you can start the engine and let it run for about 5-10 minutes every couple of weeks during storage.

Electrolyte level needs to be maintained to cover the plates. I'm not sure which is worse, letting electrolyte levels run low for extended periods of time or filling the cells with tap water instead of distilled. Either way, after sitting discharged, that is the second best way to trash a battery. Maintenance-free sealed AGM batteries go a long way toward reducing this cause of battery demise.

I have seen the same brand and model battery last 8 years for one owner, and fail after one winter for another. Any battery installed in an occasionally used vehicle will have higher maintenance requirements and need more owner vigilance to see a long and useful life. There are a few design features in expensive premium batteries that will help ward off the effects of negligent care. If you are willing to spend a few minutes every month when you're not using it, you can be pretty sure that you will get maximum battery life from even the cheapest batteries. It used to make me crazy to have to listen to owners complain about how often they had to replace their abused batteries.


__________________________________________________
Present:
1994 K75RT
1994 K75S
1992 K100RS

Past:
1982 Honda FT500
1979 Honda XR185
1977 Honda XL125
1974 Honda XL125
1972 OSSA Pioneer 250
1968 Kawasaki 175
    

Point-Seven-five

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Weight savings! LOL!!!

Back to boats. A couple years ago the West Marine catalog listed a marine head(toilet) made of molded carbon fiber for use on ultimate racing sailboats, the kind that go for $500,000 and up. Price of this head was listed at $9,995! That's right, $9,995 for a toilet.

Next to it was the standard porcelain head that sells for $99.

Shipping weight for the two heads was IDENTICAL at 28 pounds.



Last edited by Point-Seven-five on Fri Dec 09, 2016 11:31 am; edited 1 time in total


__________________________________________________
Present:
1994 K75RT
1994 K75S
1992 K100RS

Past:
1982 Honda FT500
1979 Honda XR185
1977 Honda XL125
1974 Honda XL125
1972 OSSA Pioneer 250
1968 Kawasaki 175
    

Crazy Frog

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Lack of maintenance/proper care and any battery could turn to be a bad one.
Great comments.


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1986 k75, 1985 K100rt, 1985 K100rt/EML sidecar.
    

Motorbike Mike

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Point-Seven-five wrote:Based on my experience as a mechanic in a marina for 10 years where our customers owned boats with a total of 400-500 batteries of every type and size from every possible supplier, my take on batteries is that proper maintenance and storage is more important than how much you spend or what brand you buy.

A cheap battery that is KEPT CHARGED will easily outperform and outlast the most expensive battery that is allowed to discharge during storage and left in a discharged state for long periods(more than two or three DAYS). NEVER store a battery that has anything less than a full charge on it. Storing a battery that even has a 90% charge on it will seriously damage it's ability to hold a charge later when returned to service.

Batteries need to be kept clean, especially around the terminals. Dirt will allow small amounts of current to bleed off over long periods of storage. When stored, any battery will respond well to an overnight trickle charge at least once a month. Even better is if you can start the engine and let it run for about 5-10 minutes every couple of weeks during storage.

Electrolyte level needs to be maintained to cover the plates. I'm not sure which is worse, letting electrolyte levels run low for extended periods of time or filling the cells with tap water instead of distilled. Either way, after sitting discharged, that is the second best way to trash a battery. Maintenance-free sealed AGM batteries go a long way toward reducing this cause of battery demise.

I have seen the same brand and model battery last 8 years for one owner.
I'd agree with that.
My 2008 R1200R is still on it's original BMW AGM battery. It only gets used 4 times a year totalling about 4 weeks use as I keep it at my place abroad. It's hooked up to a CTEK optimiser that works very well which leads me on to another point relevant here. I've found the type battery conditioner is also important. I had 2 other bikes out there previously and both batteries ruined by a cheaper conditioner unit. After the second failure I decided it wasn't a coincidence so changed over to the CTEK.

    

JR_K100RS

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x2 on Point-Seven-five's comments , I've had an Odyssey PC680 AGM battery since 2009 , still going strong and half the weight

John Re


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Diamond Grey ( 617 ) 1987 K100RS ( European Delivery ) Original owner
    

Dai

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RicK G wrote:I have had very good service from a Motobatt MBTX30U, about 7 years from the just past one.
The one in LFB has been there since I bought the brick and it's never given trouble. Must have got a bad one for the Guzzi as they use the same battery but this one was FOA. The first and obvious thing was that the voltage said 11.97; it then took all night to come up to full charge. Once it was there it wouldn't throw the starter solenoid. I stripped the starter motor thinking that it might be a part of the ongoing problem I've had with the powder-coaters getting powder everywhere except where it should be, so I slapped on a spare starter motor. At least this time the solenoid pulled in but no-turnee. I assumed the solenoid busbar was carboned up on this SM (common problem for the Bosch starter motor), so I completely overhauled the original SM, put in new brushes, a new solenoid and removed the powder-coating from the final places it shouldn't be occupying. I tried it again, but bang from the solenoid and that was it. The battery voltage wasn't dropping much from 13.8 but - and here's the rub - the lights on the battery charger were dropping to 50% after just a couple of tries on the button. Worse, it was only taking minutes to come up to 'full charge' again.

It's pretty obvious that one or more cells are screwed. My guess is that it's been transported upside down for part of the way. It's got to go back but 'back' is the other side of the water and 'back' is a bloody expensive courier. The evidence so far is strong but, as far as a supplier is concerned, circumstantial; after all, how do they know that I'm not a fat-fingered-fart? (Shush, Olaf Very Happy ). The only way to turn 'circumstantial' to 'proven' is to drop LFB's battery into the 1000SP and then they can pay for the bloody courier.

Yes, I'm annoyed. Shocked But a personal 50% failure rate is why I can't recommend Motobatt any more.


__________________________________________________
'83 K100 upgraded to K100RS spec
Others...
'78 Moto Guzzi 850-T3, '79 Moto Guzzi 850-T3 California,'93 Moto Guzzi 1100ie California,
'03 Suzuki Blandit GSF600SK3 (NFS any more because wifey has claimed it)
    

SteveFord

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Do NOT buy a Chinese battery.
I've been riding for over 40 years now and I've only had two batteries actually fail and both came from China. On one the case buckled due to heat from a Buell's header pipe and on the other one a cell shorted out on a Triumph Sprint and when the ignition was turned on it went from 13V to 4 millivolts.
Given a choice, I always order Yuasa.

    

BobT

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JR_K100RS wrote:x2 on Point-Seven-five's comments , I've had an Odyssey PC680 AGM battery since 2009 , still going strong and half the weight

John Re
I would normally agree with you. I have had 680s on both the R1100S's, the K100RS and my microlight. They were all great and could be left for long periods of time and lasted forever, except for one. The K100RS was not started for about 6 months and the 680 had nothing in it. I charged it with an optimate and could not get it above 6 volts, I hit it withe a 20 amp car charger and eventually got it back to 13volts but it will not hold its charge for more than 24 hours while sitting on the bench!
It is obvious that I have a bad one. The microlight can sit in the hangar for 6 months and the 680 will turn the high compression 1400cc 4 cylinder over and start it with no problem.
I now stick to Yuasa apart from one of the Ducati's. The K100RS does not need a battery as big as the 680 anyway.

    

RicK G

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Like .75 was saying you have to look after any battery to have even half a chance of getting good life from it Some will be better than others but keeping the charge up to them gives them the best life possible.
I had one Motobstt go 7 years but one only lasted 18 months because the ABS was causing a drain and it went dead flat several times and that was the end of it.


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If everything seems under control then you aint goin fast enough:- Mario Andretti
Bikes 1986 K100RT, 1993 K1100 LT, 1994 K1100 LT, 1993 K75 RT, 1996 K75RT, 1986 K75 GS, 1979 Z1300 Kawasaki X 2 & 1976 SR 500 Yamaha for now
    

Point-Seven-five

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BobT wrote: The K100RS was not started for about 6 months and the 680 had nothing in it. I charged it with an optimate and could not get it above 6 volts, I hit it withe a 20 amp car charger and eventually got it back to 13volts but it will not hold its charge for more than 24 hours while sitting on the bench!
It is obvious that I have a bad one.
So you left a battery connected for 6 months without trickle charging it during the period and it's obvious to you that it was a bad one???

If I recall, the clock draws about 5ma or about 1 amp-hour of capacity every 8 days. That tells me that the clock will kill a 20 AH battery in a little over 5 months. Then you let a totally dead battery sit for another month and try to tell me you got a bad battery.

You sound just like a lot of my customers when I tell them their batteries sh!t the bed in their boats over the winter.

The fact that you were able to do that with another battery makes it obvious to me that you were lucky with that one.


__________________________________________________
Present:
1994 K75RT
1994 K75S
1992 K100RS

Past:
1982 Honda FT500
1979 Honda XR185
1977 Honda XL125
1974 Honda XL125
1972 OSSA Pioneer 250
1968 Kawasaki 175
    

Motorbike Mike

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Point-Seven-five wrote:
BobT wrote: The K100RS was not started for about 6 months and the 680 had nothing in it. I charged it with an optimate and could not get it above 6 volts, I hit it withe a 20 amp car charger and eventually got it back to 13volts but it will not hold its charge for more than 24 hours while sitting on the bench!
It is obvious that I have a bad one.
So you left a battery connected for 6 months without trickle charging it during the period and it's obvious to you that it was a bad one???

If I recall, the clock draws about 5ma or about 1 amp-hour of capacity every 8 days. That tells me that the clock will kill a 20 AH battery in a little over 5 months. Then you let a totally dead battery sit for another month and try to tell me you got a bad battery.

You sound just like a lot of my customers when I tell them their batteries sh!t the bed in their boats over the winter.

The fact that you were able to do that with another battery makes it obvious to me that you were lucky with that one.
Smile Laughing

    

Point-Seven-five

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Batteries work because of chemical processes inside of them. The charge/discharge cycle is one process and the degradation is a separate process.

The degradation happens all the time and eventually kills the ability of the battery to hold a charge both in quantity and time. One thing abut the degradation is that it is greatly reduced when the battery is held at nearly full charge. For this reason, you want to recharge your battery immediately after using it. This is why the battery in a vehicle that is used daily will last so much longer than one that is used infrequently. The daily running fully charges the battery often enough that it is never at less than full charge and the degradation is minimized.

The trouble with batteries is that hardly anyone knows how to properly take care of them. Most people assume that they can just sit for long periods of time waiting patiently to be used, and they won't suffer any breakdown. The assumption is that with no moving parts, you can just stop using them. People ignorant of how they work talking to each other foster weird theories that are impossible to kill.


__________________________________________________
Present:
1994 K75RT
1994 K75S
1992 K100RS

Past:
1982 Honda FT500
1979 Honda XR185
1977 Honda XL125
1974 Honda XL125
1972 OSSA Pioneer 250
1968 Kawasaki 175
    

Motorbike Mike

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...but sometimes they do just give up. I have a VW T5 van that I Bought new in 2004. It gets daily use but every 3 years the battery just dies. The last but one managed 4 years-answers on a postcard please.

    

Point-Seven-five

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Mike, I don't have a postcard handy, but my experience with historic VW vehicles indicated that the charging system of the vans was a bit inadequate. Never really got into why because the engines never lasted as long as the batteries.


__________________________________________________
Present:
1994 K75RT
1994 K75S
1992 K100RS

Past:
1982 Honda FT500
1979 Honda XR185
1977 Honda XL125
1974 Honda XL125
1972 OSSA Pioneer 250
1968 Kawasaki 175
    

Motorbike Mike

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Point-Seven-five wrote:Mike, I don't have a postcard handy, but my experience with historic VW vehicles indicated that the charging system of the vans was a bit inadequate. Never really got into why because the engines never lasted as long as the batteries.
I should have asked for email replies. My T5 has a 5 cylinder 2.5 diesel engine so everything slightly more advance than the air cooled flat 4's.

    

BobT

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Point-Seven-five wrote:
BobT wrote: The K100RS was not started for about 6 months and the 680 had nothing in it. I charged it with an optimate and could not get it above 6 volts, I hit it withe a 20 amp car charger and eventually got it back to 13volts but it will not hold its charge for more than 24 hours while sitting on the bench!
It is obvious that I have a bad one.
So you left a battery connected for 6 months without trickle charging it during the period and it's obvious to you that it was a bad one???

If I recall, the clock draws about 5ma or about 1 amp-hour of capacity every 8 days. That tells me that the clock will kill a 20 AH battery in a little over 5 months. Then you let a totally dead battery sit for another month and try to tell me you got a bad battery.

You sound just like a lot of my customers when I tell them their batteries sh!t the bed in their boats over the winter.

The fact that you were able to do that with another battery makes it obvious to me that you were lucky with that one.
I must be very lucky then because all the other 3 PC680s were treated in exactly the same way without problems.

    

Dai

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Embarassed Embarassed Embarassed Embarassed Embarassed Embarassed Embarassed

See them up there? I have a profound wish to withdraw my rant against Motobatt batteries.... Embarassed Embarassed Embarassed Embarassed Embarassed and a few more to go with the first lot. As an almost last resort I chucked on the starter motor from my Cali 1100ie and the engine turned over so fast (no plugs in) that I though the throwout gear had failed to engage with the starter ring gear. I stuck my thumb over the leftside plug hole to test the engine and nearly had to rescue my thumb from the side wall of the garage. Turned out that the nice spanky new solenoid was pulling in alright... but the busbar isn't connecting across the main feed terminals. That can't go back because I've accidently scratched the laquer on the body of it - well, it could go back but the truth is I can't be arsed to argue about it. I'm just going to dismantle it, find out what's snagging the busbar and then put it back together.

And guys - you're both right. Batteries do die spectacularly if not maintained but some survive better than others for reasons known only to themselves. I used to buy the Lucas gel-type batteries when they first came out. I abused the first one for five years and when it finally died, I bought another because I was so impressed. At 80-odd a shot nearly thirty years ago, I decided to look after the second one properly, trickle-charge and all. It gave me the finger at just under the two-year warranty period, so the shop replaced it. Again, I looked after the replacement properly but got just under three years out of that one. I went back to lead-acid for years afterwards - too expensive for a battery that may or may not exceed the life of a normal acid battery. One of the succeeding lead-acid batteries then survived almost six years of abuse, including being allowed to run low on acid and being topped up on nasty hard-water tap water. I remember that one because considering what I did to it, it surprised the hell out of me that it didn't die earlier. Its corpse sat under my workbench for years afterwards, reminding me of how badly I'd treated it. You know where this is going, don't you? Yep - its non-abused replacement died just outside the warranty period.


__________________________________________________
'83 K100 upgraded to K100RS spec
Others...
'78 Moto Guzzi 850-T3, '79 Moto Guzzi 850-T3 California,'93 Moto Guzzi 1100ie California,
'03 Suzuki Blandit GSF600SK3 (NFS any more because wifey has claimed it)
    

Snod Blatter

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Motorbike Mike wrote:...but sometimes they do just give up.
I'll agree with that! I had a cheap AGM jobbie die in my CB250 while I was at work - in the morning it was fine, everything was normal, came back out of work on a lovely warm summer's day and it could barely make the neutral light glow. Madness.

Battery life seems random to me, I've had barely used and never charged batteries last 5-6 years and often used always charged batteries last 2 years. I just buy whatever's cheapest but not old fashioned lead acid, nowadays.

Interesting thread, anyway. My K has an OE BMW battery in it because a previous owner had far more money than sense, I'll no doubt be looking for a replacement at some point. I don't look after it at all, never even checked the levels Embarassed


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1989 K100RS SE ABS 8v VIN: 0149214
Others: 1.5 x Honda CBX250RS-E, '94 CB250, '95 TRX850
http://justbikethings.blogspot.co.uk/
    

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