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How much truth there is in the saying, "Know your motorcycle."

Rode my 400 to work for the first time yesterday. Since I work in a so-so neighborhood in a small city, I decided to lock it up tight -- handlebars, ignition key cover, the works. I never take that much trouble at home.

You experienced folks can see this one coming, right? :wink:

I accidentally locked the handlebars in the position that engages the parking lights, then went to work for 8 hours. I totally forgot that the handlebar lock has two positions -- one that leaves the lights on, and one that does not. :oops:

From this embarrassing event, I learned the following:

1. Be careful which handlebar lock position you choose. Be doubly-careful in broad daylight, where it's harder to notice that your lights are on.

2. If you need to jumpstart a 400, it's best to use cables that have small alligator clips. Large clips barely fit in the glove compartment (or "front trunk" as Suzuki calls it). We worked around the problem by using two of the Philips-head screw drivers from the Burgman's tool kit as an extension of the 'gator clips -- grabbed a driver in each clip, then held the philips heads against the battery contacts. McGuyver would have been proud, but it wasn't terribly safe. Ideally, one might consider re-fiitting the battery contacts with tabs of some sort that any clip can grab with ease.

3. If jumping your 'cycle from a car battery, DO NOT start the car. The car's alternator will push too much juice to your ride. Merely connecting the two batteries with a cable is sufficient to jump your Burgman.

Actually, I learned a fourth thing, too -- even experienced riders are only human. I was assisted by several solicitous co-workers, one of whom has ridden motorcycles for 40 years. He cheered me with a tale of recently going on a group ride and getting about 20 miles down the road before his bike simply quit -- because he'd forgotten to turn on the gas valve. Says he still hasn't lived it down among his buddies.

--Chris :lol:
 

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Thanks for sharing that one with us. It is a very easy mistake to make and thus a timely reminder for all.

However I am suprised that the sidelights dropped your battery in 8 hours - I must do some calcs.

Edit: Yip -if you have the standard 8 AmpHour battery - you timed that almost perfectly. The total load of the position lamp and tailight = 10Watts which equates to 0.8333 Amp/Hrs - so in 8 hrs you used 6.66 Amp/hrs or 83% of the battery capacity. If you had left it for another hour and a half you could have achieved a zero battery state :wink:

Edit Edit : We need some electrickery guru to come up with a mod to fit a timer to that circuit so that in the event of the circuit being activated the switch opens after say one hour - preventing complete battery discharge. I imagine most laws only mandate the use of these lights if parked on an unlit road - which is the UK position - I cannot see me ever wanting to do that.
 

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ChrisLucey wrote
How much truth there is in the saying, "Know your motorcycle."
I did the same thing first day I had my BMW , they have a small bulb in the head light case I never saw.
The good news is you only do something like that once. 8)
 

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Hey, nice calculating, Norman! Yes, I can believe I had 17% of my battery's power left, because there was enough juice left to run the tiny light under the seat. That threw me off for several minutes, as I erroneously thought, "Well, it can't be the battery, because this silly light works." I could occasionally see the various meters -- speedo, tacho -- roll up and down, but there simply wasn't enough left in the battery for ignition.

The parking light feature is mostly a nicety here in the States. To the best of my knowledge, it's not a requirement here as it is in the U.K. and elsewhere. A timer would seem like a good idea, wouldn't it?

--Chris
 

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ChrisLucey said:
Hey, nice calculating, Norman! Yes, I can believe I had 17% of my battery's power left, because there was enough juice left to run the tiny light under the seat. That threw me off for several minutes, as I erroneously thought, "Well, it can't be the battery, because this silly light works." I could occasionally see the various meters -- speedo, tacho -- roll up and down, but there simply wasn't enough left in the battery for ignition.

The parking light feature is mostly a nicety here in the States. To the best of my knowledge, it's not a requirement here as it is in the U.K. and elsewhere. A timer would seem like a good idea, wouldn't it?

--Chris
Well if it were me............

and it was not a legal requirement.............

I would have the bugger out and disconnect that circuit at the ignition switch right now!! :lol:

On the 400 it is quite easy to access the ignition switch assembley.
 

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Also not just the parking light will drain your battery. If you don't slam down the seat and leave the trunk light on it is possible to drain the battery. Mine was sitting in the garage for only about 9 hours and because it was only one small blub I was OK. I have since gotten the routine down and make sure this latched and also I have turned the trunk light off.
 

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When my bike is in the garage it is plugged into the battery tender.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Timothy, I know what you mean about the seat latch! Somehow when I store my full-face helmet under the seat, it often interferes with getting the seat to latch properly. I have found the tiny underseat light to be of so little use that I set the switch for it to the "always off" position, and I flip the light on manually if I need it. "Don't want to drain the battery!", I said to myself. :roll:
 

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The amp/hour calculation by NormanB is accurate only under perfect
conditions.
Variables to account for when calculating percentage of battery power left:

Age of the battery.

Tightness and cleanliness of battery terminals.

Temperature of battery being drawn upon.

Corrosion of connections from battery to load.

---

A partially drained battery does not have the cranking power that a fully
charged one will. The Burgmans' starter solenoid will eventually chatter
if it doesn't have sufficient voltage from the battery and the starter will never crank.
 

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ajwood said:
The amp/hour calculation by NormanB is accurate only under perfect
conditions.
Variables to account for when calculating percentage of battery power left:

Age of the battery.

Tightness and cleanliness of battery terminals.

Temperature of battery being drawn upon.

Corrosion of connections from battery to load.

---

A partially drained battery does not have the cranking power that a fully
charged one will. The Burgmans' starter solenoid will eventually chatter
if it doesn't have sufficient voltage from the battery and the starter will never crank.
Thanks for that statement of the obvious - that practice can be different from theory. In this case the outcome is no different. :wink:
 

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Thanks for the heads up...

As a new (finally) 400 owner I was glad I came across your post...hadn't even noticed this "feature" and may well have been subject to the same inconvenience. IMHO this switch setting is of nominal value and has probably burned more folks than it has helped....similarly the trunk light
sans auto and timed shut off is a really hazardous "feature"...since I'm on a roll, I'll throw out that the magenetic key shutter system has some real
life weaknesses, and the lack of self cancelling (or minimally audible alert
like the loud clicking on Kymco's People bikes) is a a weakness.

Paul
 

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Another parking light victim here -- about 2 months ago. :oops:

Maybe it's time for another poll -- have you left the parking light on and drained your battery? :wink:
 

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My neighbor spotted mine when I did the same and came and told me. Now I watch what I'm doing when I lock it up that way. :oops:
 

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Dead Battery.

Does the burgman have an cig/accessory plug mounted on the burgman?if so make up a wiring harness with twin lead wire and two male connectors for the plug. so the next time you have a dead battery just take it out and plug it in.for less then a few dollars you can have a set of jumpers that plug in the cig lighter from a car/truck/scooter you name it to your burgman.



Glennby


P.s. hope this makes sense,i just got off a long 13 hr shift and i am wiped out.
 

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I've run my 400's battery down twice in the year I've owned it -- once by accidentally turning the ignition key past the fork lock and leaving the parking lights on all day while I was at work, and it took a jumpstart to get it going, and again by leaving the underseat light on because the seat latch wasn't closed tightly. That took a while -- during the infamous Oregon rainy season where my scoot sees the garage more than it does pavement.

Both things I'll never do again...
 
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