Meanstrk - December 2005 Katana of the Month

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Mechanics 101 Can't get it to run right? Find a trick to add HP?
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Old 04-09-2006, 02:47 PM   #1
Skid Mark
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Rochester, NY
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Default Huge error - I need help.

I am an idiot.
My battery needed a quick charge up for the spring launch. I gave it to one of the mechanics at work to put it on the charger in the machine shop. He charged it for me and I took it home. I installed it in the bike.

Nothing. No power. No lights.

OK. I think it isn't charged. I get my multimeter out and check it. Red to +, black to -.

It reads -12.8 volts.... minus twelve point eight volts!!!!

If I put the multimeter backwards on the battery, red to - and black to + it reads +12.8 volts. I check the multimeter on other batteries in the garage and it is functioning correctly.

It had been charged backwards! So, I have bought a new battery (checked it and got +12.6 volts on multumeter) and installed it.

Nothing. No power. No lights.

What damage was done by having the 'backwards' battery in there? I have checked the fuses that are in the fuse holder in front of the battery and they are all OK.

Is there another fuse somewhere that I have missed that may have blown? I am lost and looking for some help.

Any ideas?
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Old 04-09-2006, 03:19 PM   #2
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OK first off you cant "charge" a battery backwards.

A battery creates electron flow based on the
metals used to make up the plates and the
acid they are submerged in.
The polarity is based on the plates reaction to the acid.
It is in the design.. Chargeing a battery
basiclly reverses the process using the charger
power to create a reaction returning the electrons back into the fluid (recharging the acid.)

You can test this by measureing the pH of the
fluid in the dead battery, then charging it.
(the pH will change)

Anyway, installing the battery probibly poped either a fusable link (big fuse) or a circuit breaker.
I havent dived to far into the Kat electrics to tell you for sure.

Now what happened to your old battery?
Beats me.. you may have fused a bunch of cells
that caused a "reverse" of the voltage but
there may not have been much juice there.
Just enough to pop the breaker?
Actually I'm shocked that if the battery charger was
hooked up backwards is did'nt blow up.
It will wreck the battery for sure..
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Old 04-09-2006, 05:32 PM   #3
Skid Mark
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Location: Rochester, NY
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Thank you for the info. I am not a battery technology expert by any means! All I know is that the battery was reading -12.8 volts when tested normally, and reading +12.8 volts when reversed on my multimeter.

Can someone point me to any other fuses/links/breakers that I should check. I have never been beneath any of the covers of this bike since I bought it and don't have any manuals to help out.
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Old 04-09-2006, 06:17 PM   #5
Skid Mark
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Location: Rochester, NY
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Originally Posted by ZukiFred
There is a fuse on the left side under the fairing right near the tank. Did you check that one?
Heading out right now to look...
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Old 04-09-2006, 06:31 PM   #6
Skid Mark
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That was it - the main 30 amp fuse under the left fairing was blown. The spare was there and everything is operating normally now.

Thank you for the quick help!!
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