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Discussion Starter #1
Well not at first anyway, here's the situtation.

Bike was outside last night as it is most nights (no garage:banghead).

Temps were a bit below freezing.

I attempted to start it like I always do - clutch in (not that it matters - switch bypassed), side stand up (switch also bypassed) in neutral. Turned key on, thumb'd the starter button. Motor spun over quickly as normal, but didn't fire, pop, backfire or do anything. Tried several more times. Eventually the bat got sorta low. Gave it one last try and gave one little pop though the exhaust, but didn't start. By this time is was cranking somewhat slowly. I pulled the seat off and slid the bat high enough to get jumper cables on it. Hooked up a jumper pack and it lit right off. Rode it into work without issue.

Background:
It has been cranking longer before starting than it used to, but its also been staying running after starting while it used to die after the first attempt, only to start right back up and run perfectly.

Nothing has been changed very recently on the bike - last work done was to install a pro-fire coil (front cylinder - still have an SV coil on the rear cylinder, ran out of time, intend to install the rear pro-fire asap) and replace the plugs (brisk plugs installed) and check valve clearances (in spec, but on the tight side of things).

Bike has 49k miles on it.

Runs perfectly once started. Normally starts perfectly.

Sometimes after re-fueling the low fuel light stays lit, turning the key off and back on fixes it. Other times it lights up imeadiatly after starting when it shouldn't and stays on or flashes quickly - again, key off and on fixes it.

Bike gets ridden every weekday for ~2 - 2.5 hours a day. Battery is the origional one as far as I know, but still spins the motor over quickly when cold.

Its started in much colder weather both last winter and this fall without issue.

Bike had ~3/4 tank of fuel at the time of the no-start situtation. Fuel was from a Sunoco station I've never used before but I was low and it was there....

Had helmet and ear-plugs in and couldn't tell if the fuel pump was priming or not.

Have not done + mod yet, did check voltage at the coils, it was 0.7v less than at the bat.

Has syn 5w-40 oil in it.

TB's are properly seated in their boots.


Any ideas? I don't have time to do much if any work untill Sunday so really quick/simple checks would be great. The bike is my primary transport and it would be a pita to have it off the road for more than one weekend at a time...I can ride the DR but its a bit slow for interstate use (and isn't currently wired for electrics = cold ride)
 

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Did it sit in the recent rains? Corrosion in the loom where the hot leads splice gave me weird results once. I found it by feeling for hot spots on the wire (extra resistance at the point of corrosion).
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Yep, it gets wet a lot as it sits outside a bit and I ride it every day, rain snow or shine. I'll have to try looking for hot spots. Thanks for the tip!
 
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i think the battery is slowly giving up on you. It could be spinning the engine just a tad too slow so that it doesn't catch...explains the longer cranking too before it catches. One-starter instead of two-starter is caused by TL-angels having a laugh with you :laugh My TL always was a two-starter, while my rap always always starts right off the first time...god knows why :)

9 years on the original bat is pretty good though :thumbup ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Could be, I certainly have gotten my use from the battery, never expected it to last so long, but near as I can tell (just by sound) its cranking over as quickly as always. Still, its likely that it is slower but not enough for me to detect:O
 

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Will ride for Food
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Battery. Period.
 
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just a fraction too slow (impossible to hear) will be enough to have the engine not catching...especially in the cold :)
 

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Discussion Starter #10
That's probably it then. It started fine this morning (started really quickly, died, re-started....). Usually it doesn't go but one night without being started, but as of last monday it hadn't been started since friday evening. Perhaps sitting for an extra day is just enough to slow it up a bit:O
 

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Yep, I'd go with a new battery.
 

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The Suck, Squeeze, Bang, Blow Moderator,
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Yep , new battery

You may have only 0.7v less at the coils, but that measurement won't be when cranking a cold engine in zero conditions.

Starter is pulling all the available power and nothing left for the coils to fire it :devious
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Very good point! So I need a small seperate battery to fire the coils while cranking:lol
 

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But if you've also got a loom that's got extra resistance even a new battery will have trouble. Have you megged the starter and primary circuits?
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Nope I haven't. I do have an extra loom that I intend to go though and solder all connections, bypass all the crap I don't want and intergrate a + mod and power for grips and heated vest....Just need to make this one last untill I have time to get all that done.
 

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Very good point! So I need a small seperate battery to fire the coils while cranking:lol
Well, since you only need enough to boost the voltage back to the correct value, you might try carrying a "D" cell or two with you. :laugh
 

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Discussion Starter #17
lol - kinda wish the coils were fired like on dirt bikes - directly powered by the stator output (AC I think) and totally seperate of the battery circut (if there is one). Suzuki isn't a fan of that in general for some reason I think. Even on my DR and on kick start DR's the coils are fired by a battery. Thus, on the kick start models if the battery goes dead the bike won't start:dowhat

I think I might buy a battery charger and just plug it in on weekends and really cold nights. Will probably do the trick for now:O
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Updating an old thread here for posterity............

I did end up getting a battery tender and plugged that in on especially cold nights. That did the trick up untill yesterday, when even after being plugged in all night the bike wouldn't start. It spun over pretty well and would sputter, but just wouldn't start. I had ridden 200 miles the day before as well, so no worries about the battery being drained. Green light on the tender was on when I first tried to start it:O

I put a new battery in it and it started right up and spun over more quickly than I think it ever has. Temps were in the mid-teens to low twenties.

So there ya go, y'all were right, just a weak battery:thumbup
 

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Ha... I was just about to offer up my old TLS battery (still good). :laugh

My trick is to remove the high-beam fuse when I think I'm having battery issues. That way I just flick the switch to high then crank it over. Not driving the lights helps a whole heap when trying to turn over a reluctant TL.
 

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+1 battery.
 
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