ECU, Coils, or ???? -- Legend TT - Triumph Forum: Triumph Rat Motorcycle Forums
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Hinckley Classic Triples 885cc Classic Styled T3's: Legend, Thunderbird, Thunderbird Sport & Adventurer.

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Old 03-16-2010, 02:31 PM   #1 (permalink)
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ECU, Coils, or ???? -- Legend TT

What are the symptoms of a failing ECU? Failing coils? Bad switch (clutch)?

I have a 2000 Legend TT, bought new in early '01, with about 14k on it (I have 2 other motorcycles and I also ride bicycles a lot, so the Legend doesn't get a lot of mileage). About 1 month ago, I was riding home in heavy, heavy rain. While stopped in the left turn lane, waiting for traffic to clear, nearly drowning (did I mention it was raining?), the Legend just quit. All three cylinders at once. No hiccups, no misses, just stopped, like I flipped the kill switch to off (I didn't). It wouldn't start -- almost like the battery was dead. The motor would just turn over very slowly, never quite catching. I pushed it in the heavy traffic (did I mention it was raining -- and I was in 5 pm rush hour traffic) about 400 yards until I could pull into a driveway and let the rain fall, and the traffic clear. After about an hour, the rain had quit, rush hour traffic had died down, and the bike started right up, like nothing had happened. I rode it on home, wondering what the heck, and pulled into the garage. I put the charger on the batteryand brought the battery (a gel cell less than 1 year old) back up to full charge, just in case.

I've ridden it several more times since then -- no apparent problems until today.

Today (clear & cool, no rain), I took the Legend out for a short ride. I had to stop for a l-o-n-g traffic light, and the bike stopped again. No hiccups, no misses, just quit. This time it started right back up w/o problems. I rode it on to my destination, about a mile further, pulled into the parking spot, and it died again. Since I was at my destination, I parked, ran my errand, came back out, and the bike started right up, but died when I pulled up to a stop sign leaving the parking lot. Again, it started right back up, and it didn't quit again on this short ride, but I didn't have to stop again on the return trip back home.

Bike had a full tune up @ 12K, per the guidelines in the shop manual. It did sit for 9 weeks last summer (June-July), after the tune-up, while my broken pelvis was healing, but started up immediately when I was released to ride again.

What should I check? I'm stumped!! I want to have the confidence in my Legend again.
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Old 03-16-2010, 02:40 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I would go for the pickup coil straight off from what you've said. If all the instances are when the bike has standing for a while idling with the engine already hot it suggests to me that pickup coil gap is closing up with the heat, returning to a viable gap when cooled a bit. I'd go for a short run on the bike and (if you haven't had to stop meantime) leave the bike idling for a while when you get back home, see if the problem occurs.
Good luck, Mick.
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Old 03-16-2010, 03:37 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Could be coils, but the bike usually doesn't start right back up if that's the case.

Are your battery cable screws tight?
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Old 03-16-2010, 04:21 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Is what you're calling the pickup coil what's labeled "sensor, ignition" on the Bike Bandit site? ($74.95US cost)? It looks like the same part as the "pickup sensor" from the factory manual.

I'll check it out. Thanks!

Jack
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Old 03-16-2010, 04:51 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trophy4 View Post
Is what you're calling the pickup coil what's labeled "sensor, ignition" on the Bike Bandit site? ($74.95US cost)? It looks like the same part as the "pickup sensor" from the factory manual.

I'll check it out. Thanks!

Jack
That's the part, but check your serial number. If it's still the original Gill that you've got it's about due for failing anyway!

Cheers, Mick.
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Old 03-16-2010, 05:01 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Im new to the Triumph Legend so dont know many of its problems,so it could be coils like other say.
But i would check the battery first,as it might not be taking a full charge,takes a lot of bikes to be in the 2000 rpm to charge the battery,when your sitting at the lights your below them revs,so with a bad battery you could be draining the power very fast,letting it sit for a while can give you that little bit extra kick to get it started.
Hope you get it sorted soon.
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Old 03-16-2010, 06:51 PM   #7 (permalink)
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If the bike starts again tho' after cutting out, I would think the battery is ok?

Doesn't sound like ignition coils, they cause misfiring as well as cutting out. This sounds like all cylinders are affected also.

The ignition pick up/sensor (r/side crankshaft cover) is known to sometimes fail when hot, ok when cold. The gap (to the ignition rotor) is important, so should be checked.

Other electrical possibilities are the igniter itself or sidestand switch which must supply a 'ground' input to it to continue running.
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Old 03-17-2010, 12:00 PM   #8 (permalink)
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The Haynes manual shows how to check the resistance of the pickup sensor, but if it's only failing when hot, I'm not sure it will show me an error. Resistance, per Haynes, is 530ohms, +/- 10%. I'll trace the wire and check it. Maybe I'll get lucky and it will be in failure mode when I check it.

I do hope the igniter isn't failing. That's a $$ expense!
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Old 03-17-2010, 12:20 PM   #9 (permalink)
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When my pickup coil went out it exactly the same thing you describe.
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Old 05-08-2010, 11:00 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Problem apparently solved! After what seemed to an interminable wait for the new pickup coil and case gasket from Bike Bandit, and a couple of weeks while my schedule sorted itself out to give me enough time to tackle the problem, I replaced the OEM Gill pickup coil with a new one. No name on the new coil, so don't know who made this one. I just know that "Gill" was nowhere to be found on the part.

Bike came apart and went back together w/o problems. Put the charger on the battery to bring it up to full charge, and Voila! The bike started right up and now runs great! I took her out on a shortish ride -- 45 miles or so -- over to Barber's museum and back, with several stops along the way to see if it would stop again. I'm pleased to report that she's running maybe even better than ever!

What a sweet ride again!
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