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(Solved!) Had to get a jump start from roadside assistance; starter motor not cranking after a chilly night; intermitent issue?!


p6x
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17 hours ago, Tomchri said:

Highly recomended to install an extra relay feeding starter solenoid to avoid any stress to the ign switch.

Cheers Tom.

It makes complete sense. Routing the starting Amps through the ignition switch seemed to have been a cheap shot forced by management in a cost cutting effort.

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18 minutes ago, p6x said:

I am a bit uneasy about "Vaseline" grease.... it sounds "dirty"...

I am thinking about either Dielectric grease, or in the case of the Switch, something like "Carbon Conductive" grease, such as the one proposed by MG Chemicals.

So that would be two different type of greases:

The Dielectric one, that needs to "isolate" the connection from moisture, not conductive;

The "Conductive" one, this one should be used as an ointment inside that infamous contact switch. While retaining the moisture repellent property of the other type, it does not impede proper contact between the terminals.

I could even pass on the Dielectric and only use the Carbon based one.

What do you think?

 

Caig DeOxit Gold ®

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Pass on the dialectic, you already know why.

Dielectric grease, or tune-up grease, is a silicone-based grease that repels moisture and protects electrical connections against corrosion. ... The grease does not conduct electricity, so it shouldn't be applied directly to the mating surfaces (pins and sockets) of an electrical connection

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On 11/19/2021 at 5:09 AM, p6x said:

I am thinking about either Dielectric grease, or in the case of the Switch, something like "Carbon Conductive" grease, such as the one proposed by MG Chemicals.

So that would be two different type of greases:

The Dielectric one, that needs to "isolate" the connection from moisture, not conductive;

The "Conductive" one, this one should be used as an ointment inside that infamous contact switch. While retaining the moisture repellent property of the other type, it does not impede proper contact between the terminals.

I could even pass on the Dielectric and only use the Carbon based one.

What do you think?

 

Imagine the bad things that will happen when "conducting" grease gets spread between contacts inside the switch. Most conductive greases are designed for static voltage control or slip rails. They are not for ignition switches.

Ordinary non-conductive (dielectric) grease is best. Vaseline is a good dielectric, but gets thicker in cold and could hold contacts apart. Lubriplate DS-ES grease is designed for switches, but any white lithium based grease will be good.

Most connectors benefit from liberal application of dielectric grease. I wrote about this here: https://www.v11lemans.com/forums/index.php?/topic/19693-aircraft-piloting-analogies/&do=findComment&comment=259237

 

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The better Yuasa batteries are made in the same Pensylvanian factory as the Odyssey's.

I recently bought a brand new pc545 for a customer's Vincent in which i was after fitting an electric start.

That battery would not charge above 12.5v, would discharge in 3days down to 11.7v and give only 120 amps under test.

So a Dud could appear amongst the bests

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3 hours ago, p6x said:

I am a 20th century guy, and all the Japanese motorcycles I saw back in the 70's where equipped with Yuasa batteries, stock.

A lot of those "new" brands were not around back then, and even if they were, they probably did not cater to the wheeler people. Yuasa is a brand I would naturally trust because of its longevity.

Unfortunately, if you use the product find on the Yuasa site, you draw a blank for Moto Guzzi V11 Le Mans / Sport 2004.... :blush:

 

Well, with a niche brand like Guzzi, you have to get creative. All of the V11 Sports use the same battery, so just use the '99-'02 if that's all they show. I have noted that a lot of sites ignore the '03-'05/'06 V11s.

As to Yuasa, they make the AGM batteries in their Reading, Pennsylvania plant. Not far away, DEKA also makes AGM batteries, but I decided to go with Yuasa, as the last one I had lasted me 9 years. As a trial, I have installed a DEKA AGM battery in a Kawasaki I own.

YTX15L-BS for the AGM series for Guzzis. If you go to Yuasa UK, they have a far better application guide, listing each V11 variant separately, even though they all use the same battery. Although, I'm slightly miffed, as they list my bike as the "V11 Ballabgio" 

https://www.yuasa.co.uk/#lookup-manual-selection

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5 hours ago, fotoguzzi said:

Pass on the dialectic, you already know why.

Dielectric grease, or tune-up grease, is a silicone-based grease that repels moisture and protects electrical connections against corrosion. ... The grease does not conduct electricity, so it shouldn't be applied directly to the mating surfaces (pins and sockets) of an electrical connection

Agreed. I was not going to use Dialectic Grease in the Switch itself.

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4 hours ago, MartyNZ said:

Imagine the bad things that will happen when conducting grease gets spread between contacts inside the switch after weeks of action. Also keep in mind that conductive greases are poor conductors when compared to metal to metal contact, and certainly cannot carry 30amps. Ordinary non-conductive grease is best. Vaseline will work, but gets thicker in cold and could hold contacts apart. Lubriplate DS-ES is designed for switches, but any white lithium based grease will be good. 

As for dielectric grease, keep in mind that air and Vaseline are dielectric. We need a dielectric action on every switch type. 

Most connectors benefit from dielectric grease. I wrote about this here: https://www.v11lemans.com/forums/index.php?/topic/19693-aircraft-piloting-analogies/&do=findComment&comment=259237

 

As I type, I have not seen the inside of the ignition switch installed on my Le Mans; I can't tell what is wrong with it, and I until I open it and gets a visual check, then I will maybe get a better understanding.

My experience with Dielectric grease mostly come from installing logging heads on mono and heptacables to be run in oil wells. Conductors have to be completely insulated from either the well effluent, or the drilling mud. Including under pressure. So after the logging head is built, you pump it full of Dielectric silicone grease. And for that, we used Molykote 4 which is one of the compound you suggest in your write up....

I had my share of aborted runs due to insulation losses.... which invariably ends in the company man's office and a good reason to always have a tube of Vaseline handy....

Back to the V11, I did a test today. I let the Guzzi outside of the garage, and right on cue, no start when pushing the starter button. A few on/off, and eventually it cranked. I guess I confirmed the root cause, so I am going to need to get down to it, no other way around...

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Just to clarify, there are two distinct "no start" scenarios with the V11: 1) slow crank followed by solenoid clicking/ or just solenoid clicking, and 2) no action at all when the starter button is pressed.

Case #1 is being discussed here, extensively, and can be multicausal. Case #2 will sometimes exhibit a sudden recovery as if nothing had happened. Sometimes this can be reproduced by holding in the starter button while rotating the bars lock-to-lock. If the starter suddenly engages with full force, the culprit is likely the bullet connectors for the clutch switch lock-out located on the left forward side of the frame spine beneath the tank.

DSCN1472.jpg

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I don't know of any grease that actually conducts electricity, take your multimeter on Ohms and see, take a picture and post it here if you find a conductor.

Vaseline has been used by electricians for 100 years or more, its especially good on battery terminals and ground connections, what it does is protect the metal from Oxygen, no Oxygen = no Lead Oxide. Lead Oxide is an insulator, you can prove this to yourself by touching your Volt meter leads to the battery posts, chances are if you haven't scraped them clean you won't get a connection until you jab the terminals through the oxide layer, on moving contacts Vaseline lubricates  the contacts to stop them wearing. I swear by this stuff, I never work on bike electrics without it. I dip wire in it before I crimp a lug on, they never corrode that way.

Actually any grease will deter lead oxide formation, Vaseline is cleaner than most.

I wouldn't use Dielectric grease i've seen too many bad reports on it, I have no personal experience because I never use it, I believe its good for plug leads however, I would use it there.

The starter current doesn't pass through the ignition switch, it's the current to the starter solenoid coils this can be over 50 Amps for a split second. Once the solenoid pulls the gear into mesh and the main contacts close it drops to about 10 Amps.

If your dash lights are dimming it's either too much resistance in the switch or a bad battery or ground connection. It could be the battery of course, the test below will check that.

The easy way to troubleshoot the starter is to take a wire and touch one end to the solenoid spade connector and the other to battery positive, if it cranks that proves the battery and starter are both ok. Do this with a Voltmeter across the terminals and it should hold around 10 Volts while cranking.

A word of warning, make sure the bike is in neutral or the starter will launch it.

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11 hours ago, Kiwi_Roy said:

I don't know of any grease that actually conducts electricity, take your multimeter on Ohms and see, take a picture and post it here if you find a conductor.

Vaseline has been used by electricians for 100 years or more, its especially good on battery terminals and ground connections, what it does is protect the metal from Oxygen, no Oxygen = no Lead Oxide. Lead Oxide is an insulator, you can prove this to yourself by touching your Volt meter leads to the battery posts, chances are if you haven't scraped them clean you won't get a connection until you jab the terminals through the oxide layer, on moving contacts Vaseline lubricates  the contacts to stop them wearing. I swear by this stuff, I never work on bike electrics without it. I dip wire in it before I crimp a lug on, they never corrode that way.

Actually any grease will deter lead oxide formation, Vaseline is cleaner than most.

I wouldn't use Dielectric grease i've seen too many bad reports on it, I have no personal experience because I never use it, I believe its good for plug leads however, I would use it there.

The starter current doesn't pass through the ignition switch, it's the current to the starter solenoid coils this can be over 50 Amps for a split second. Once the solenoid pulls the gear into mesh and the main contacts close it drops to about 10 Amps.

If your dash lights are dimming it's either too much resistance in the switch or a bad battery or ground connection. It could be the battery of course, the test below will check that.

The easy way to troubleshoot the starter is to take a wire and touch one end to the solenoid spade connector and the other to battery positive, if it cranks that proves the battery and starter are both ok. Do this with a Voltmeter across the terminals and it should hold around 10 Volts while cranking.

A word of warning, make sure the bike is in neutral or the starter will launch it.

@Kiwi_Roy Thanks for the insight!

I got your point about Vaseline; it is just that I never came across it before reading this thread. When it comes to logging oil wells, we want the continuity and insulation possible, under hydro static or effluent pressure, and temperature. And we test with Mega ohmmeters or in the case of Electrical Down hole Pumps, ESPs, Giga Ohmmeters. 

The exact symptom, in my situation:

-I turn on the ignition switch, depress the clutch lever, depress the starter button, both neutral and oil pressure lights dim, nothing else. If I do not immediately release the starter button, the 15 Amps "key switch" fuse #4, described in the workshop manual page 46 in chapter 17 fuse terminal board, blows. Every time.

Following your proposed trouble shooting root causes, I am convinced the switch is the culprit, but I will run the tests to exclude all the possibilities.

The battery is new, and the terminals and connections do not exhibit  any trace of oxidation. I took them off for good measure.

 

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  • p6x changed the title to (Solved!) Had to get a jump start from roadside assistance; starter motor not cranking after a chilly night; intermitent issue?!

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