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Twins Technical Talk Technical Talk for Hinckley Triumph Twins: Bonneville, T100, Speedmaster, America, Thruxton, and Scrambler.

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Old 11-11-2012, 12:21 AM   #21 (permalink)
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I would certainly be looking at the ignition system first, as others have said. Easiest way to quickly check for spark, unplug just one spark plug wire (from the spark plug, not from the coil), place the end near the cylinder head and crank the engine. If you see spark, you just eliminated that entire system, and you know you have a problem elsewhere. If you don't see spark, you have to narrow down where in that system the problem is. I'd bet you won't see spark. Judging from the immediate loss of ignition, a coil is your likely culprit.

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Originally Posted by tsx123 View Post
Triumphs are so much sexier than Moto Guzzis!
Whoa now! Lets all just calm down before we say something we'll regret!

Seriously though, triumphs are sexy.. but I'll let a couple of my own pictures be my rebuttal:



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'77 Yamaha xs750 triple 'Luxe 77' build thread here

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Old 11-11-2012, 12:39 AM   #22 (permalink)
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sorry for the misinformation re grounding a single plug rather than both. i'm glad to have been corrected. thanks to the older members.

that said, i have done a single-plug grounded test on my bike and not actually killed the coil immediately. then again just because it didn't destroy the part immediately doesn't mean no harm was done to the ignition coil. a couple of short lengths of wire with alligator clips on are pretty useful to have around for this sort of stuff.

regarding removal of the clutch-side cover you can do it without dropping the oil but just throw an old rag over you right hand side exhaust pipe and work over scrap cardboard or similar to catch any dribbles. you don't want to get oil on the carpet in the lounge room.

why? where do you work on your bike?

others have suggested you buy a new gasket and rubbers. a new pick-up coil will come with a new rubber gasket and you can buy a clutch side cover for about ten quid i think. this is the easiest but not the cheapest option for resealing. i made a gasket like people used to do out of a brown paper shopping bag, cutting it to size with the shank of a screwdriver and punching out the bolt holes. you just grease it up and torque the bolts carefully and it'll hold oil in spite of being a triumph. something to consider if you're inclined to make things yourself anyway.
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Old 11-11-2012, 04:18 AM   #23 (permalink)
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Old 11-11-2012, 07:18 AM   #24 (permalink)
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Some new information.
I charged the battery yesterday and put it back on the bike this morning intending to test things. And of course it started right up, no problem. This obviously renders my mulitmeter a bit redundant as everything will just read normal.

To me this could be two things:

1. It's a cold morning this morning. The other night when it failed the bike was very hot as traffic was terrible. I would imagine, being actually in the engine, that the pick-up coil is the most likely to fail through heat, yes? There's no way the igniter or the ignition coil could get too hot.

2. This is less likely but I want to eliminate it as a possibility. I had a Honda which would not run without the battery having a certain amount of charge. A dead battery or a dead charging circuit would kill it. Is the Triumph the same? Could there be a problem with the battery charging circuit that would cause the engine to cease operations below a certain voltage? I've bump started this bike on a knackered flat battery before, so I'm guessing not, and there was enough charge for several goes on the starter after it crapped out, .

I checked the igniter contacts and all that looks brand new. The ignition coil has no signs of loose connectors or damaged wiring, or water ingress (I'd need to pull the tank to check properly but it looks OK from underneath with a torch, and besides it wasn't raining when the bike died.)
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Old 11-11-2012, 08:26 AM   #25 (permalink)
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no, if battery is charged and starts ok you can still test if system is charging with multimeter, volts should go up etc when revving on multimeter.
and then it might not be charging system could still be a duff battery not taking charge, so if meter reads charging ok could well be battery.
how old is the battery etc
remember its ohms needed for starting bike volts are for lights etc
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Old 11-11-2012, 08:30 AM   #26 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Mad Hatta View Post
I would certainly be looking at the ignition system first, as others have said. Easiest way to quickly check for spark, unplug just one spark plug wire (from the spark plug, not from the coil), place the end near the cylinder head and crank the engine. If you see spark, you just eliminated that entire system, and you know you have a problem elsewhere. If you don't see spark, you have to narrow down where in that system the problem is. I'd bet you won't see spark. Judging from the immediate loss of ignition, a coil is your likely culprit.



Whoa now! Lets all just calm down before we say something we'll regret!

Seriously though, triumphs are sexy.. but I'll let a couple of my own pictures be my rebuttal:



lol, i think you've only added fuel to the triumphs are sexier fire, sorry but thats ugly
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Old 11-11-2012, 08:44 AM   #27 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by timpee77 View Post
sorry for the misinformation re grounding a single plug rather than both. i'm glad to have been corrected. thanks to the older members.
Oi!!!
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Old 11-11-2012, 08:46 AM   #28 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Londonbabe View Post
Some new information.
I charged the battery yesterday and put it back on the bike this morning intending to test things. And of course it started right up, no problem.

Looks like it wasn't dead, only sleeping.
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Old 11-11-2012, 10:11 AM   #29 (permalink)
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Chop.. nope, you're incorrect. Maybe you need to visit your optometrist.

Londonbabe, if your bike just dropped out suddenly, without any other things happening beforehand (such as sputtering, dimming lights or odd gauge readout), it is most likely not going to be a battery or alternator. Especially if the bike cranked over strongly afterward, and you were able to continue to crank it over multiple times while you tried to get it to restart. That shows the battery had good amperage remaining. Now if it cranked over weakly when you tried to restart it (before you drained the battery), then yea, I'd look at the battery/charging system. It is common for worn out or damaged ignition parts to show their ugly faces when they get hot, especially if they get hotter than normal.

Because your bike is now working fine, first I'd check your alternator's charging voltage (engine running, multimeter leads touching each battery terminal) just because it's quick and simple. If that looks normal, you'll have to get your bike warmed up again, possibly back to the same temperature conditions it was in when the fault happened. If it is an ignition part having a fault due to temperature, it may happen again right away, or it might not happen again for some time.
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bought a wrecked 2010 T100 in North GA.. so wrecked it was sold as parts only.. I designed and rebuilt it. :) Build thread here
'77 Yamaha xs750 triple 'Luxe 77' build thread here

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Old 11-12-2012, 07:20 AM   #30 (permalink)
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When my pick up coil died it did not do so immediately or without warning. The bike would stop running suddenly when hot but then I'd be able to start it again when it was cooler again. The intermittent problem grew worse and I couldn't figure out what was going on until eventually it stopped altogether and I swapped out all components of the ignition system, eventually finding the problem to be the PU coil.

The mechanic at my local triumph dealership told me that he'd seen a few of around that vintage come through with dead PU coils. Mine is an '05.

Yours might be something different but it sure walks and quacks like a duck. I'll be very interested to see what it turns out to be.

Best of luck with the diagnosis and repair.


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