Kawasaki Motorcycle Forums banner

1 - 20 of 28 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello fellow Kawi Riders -

I was wondering if anyone had any ideas @ a problem I'm having w/ a 1989 KZ 1000 Police Special. The main symptom is a Main Circuit fuse that gets so hot over the course of just 15 minutes of riding (it's to hot to touch after just 2 minutes of warm-up) that it melts the solder & 'blows' the fuse.

Obviously, the problem is in the electrical system. I have replaced the voltage regulator, ignitor & battery. I have inspected the ignition switch & starter motor(rebuilt starter). This occurs when all of the 'police switches' are in the off position (or on, for that matter). Since none of the other circuits get hot & the battery holds a charge for weeks: I'm assuming there is some sort of short in the main circuit after the ignition switch. Any weak points to check? Any tests to run?

The wiring harness is relatively un-butchered, but the bike's definately been worked on before. The wiring to & from the main fuse/ ingnition switch appears to be the original heavier guage (White, White/Black)still in the factory wrap/tape. I found a hot unswitched lead (probably from the rear police lights/equipment) rubbing against the frame beneath the battery box. But the melting fuse problem continues as it has from the begining.

I can't see any signs of melted wiring in the visible portions of the harness. The only thing (electrically) that had been done since the bike was purchased was to rebuild the starter motor. Could this be the culprit? All other electric functions work perfectly (lights, self cancelling turn signals, horn, guages, etc.).

Does anyone have any insight? It's a great bike in all other respects & I'd hate to see it burst into flames @ 75 miles an hour (Especially w/ me astride).

Thanks for any help.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
KZ1000P fuse "melting"

I don't have the answer to your problem...but we are having the same problem with one of our 2002 KZ1000P's that's currently in police enforecement service. And I was hoping to FIND the answer here!

I am NOT a certified mechanic but I do the routing maintenance on both of our bikes (both 2002's) such as oil changes, clutch replacement, installation of emergency equipment, minor repairs, etc.

Both bikes have the exact same led emergency lights, siren, radar, comm system, etc. but one bike has started doing the exact same thing you are describing...only intermittently. It will go weeks at a time without any problem, them it will melt the solder out of the glass fuse and the metal end separates from the glass. The fuse never "blows" as if shorted out.

I have been out with the rider once when the bike "died" suddenly and I immediately checked the 30 amp main fuse. It was TOO HOT TO TOUCH as you describe and the metal end had come off of it.

The local dealer suggested replacing the fuse block because the clear cover had been lost and they suspected a "short". I checked all the insulation of the wiring above the fuse block and found NO breaks. I did replace the fuse block with a new one because you can't just buy the clear cover (!).

I was hoping to find a short or something in the back of the old fuse block but it was fine. The SOLID WHITE wire side of the fuse terminal of the 30 amp fuse was discolored purple from heat but the WHITE w/RED tracer side was not.

I'm going to look at the wiring diagram tomorrow to see where that SOLID WHITE wire goes and maybe that will give us the answer. I'm not sure if this is the battery side or the "downstream" side of the fuse.

I will post the answer if I figure it out. ANY HELP WOULD BE GREATLY APPRECIATED!
 

·
Official BTK Forum Pot Stirrer
Joined
·
37,387 Posts
any bare wires touching the frame?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I found a 'bare' lead under the battery box, but that didn't help the problem(though it did take out the regulator b4 I found it!). what finally fixed it was swapping the fuse block for a modern one w/ blade type fuses. Evidently the old tube type brass ears weren't holding tight & generated high resistance....that equals heat. Melt city.

Much nicer now!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
That sounds too simple to be true but I'm glad to hear that the blade fuse block solved your problem!

Just to follow up, i found that the SOLID WHITE wire on the "burnt" side of our fuse block goes straight to the ignition switch and a tap runs off of it to the "pursuit lights" switch on the right hand grip.

I was planning on checking all the grounds to the emergency lights and the ignition (as was suggested) until I read your last reply.

Based on your solution it would appear that our bike should now be fixed since I installed the NEW FUSE BLOCK...at least for a while until the brass ears loose their grip like the old one did.

Was the replacement blade-type fuse block a direct fit? And if so, where did you purchase it, and what was the intended application? Just curious in case I have to resort to the same fix. Thank you in advance and thanks for all the other input!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
17 Posts
Sorry about reviving an ancient topic everyone, but i just got me a 1989 kz1000P also, the P/o was riding it one day and the electricals (everything) suddenly shorted and turned off and bike never ran again.

I was wondering how difficult it was to switch out the fuse block if that is an issue on all these bikes.

the main glass fuse is good and checks out ok, but i cant figure out why everything electrical would die in one instant.
 

·
Navy Vet Search & Rescue
Joined
·
8,842 Posts
Most likely, the main feed through the 30 amp fuse has lost connection somewhere. It should go from the battery through the fuse to the ign switch. Get a meter and start checking to see where it's being lost at. It most likely is at the fuse connection or the ign switch but could be in the wires also. It also may have lost the ground so don't forget to check that too. Be sure to check both sides of the fuse with the meter. Some times they look good but are actually bad.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
17 Posts
thanks for the reply, however i got bored and started tinkering.

resoldered some wires and replaced a few fuses on the fuse block today and got power.

fumbled around on the wiring harness a bit more since it was a lighting fuse that was toasted, found that the Stator wires were all history so that will be my next issue in repair, I will most likely solder them direct to the wires behind both melted connectors giving them a better connection and not worry about bad connections anylonger.


and the red connector next to the battery

the reason it died like it did was a bad ground caused the Stator to overwork itself and heated the wiring system beyond its capacity and found the easiest escape. Somone had a 35-amp fuse in the block where a 10-15 amp fuse should have been, having proper fuses and not pop bottle caps would have avoided a serious problem like this one.

I think i will be able to go back a ways and find good wires again and avoid replacing the stator, I have no clue about the condition of the rectifire though, maybe my replacement one for my other KZ will work who knows.

Best thing today was seeing all the lights glowing, turning the bike over a few times and spraying starting (WD40) into the carbs and hearing it fire up.

Carbs dont get any fuel so a good thorough carb cleaning is going to need to happen really soon too.

Then off to State patrol for VIN inspection since the state doesnt give titles for the bikes without a salvage tag on them and ride the crap out of it with my Doughnut decals on the side covers.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
17 Posts
sure would be nice if i had this bike out of my truck. driving a Ranger that is lifted around town with an extra thousand pounds in the bed sucks!

I refuse to work on it in the back of a truck and the wife isnt too happy i have it in the first place. screw her and what she thinks though i am keeping it.

Jus want this out of the truck so i can make it purr again, clogged carbs and stator wiring in a mess of broken wires needs my attention and its bugging the crap out of me knowing the bike will be in my truck ALL month until the 25th at the earliest when the Washington State troopers look it over.
Cant unload it or reload it by myself.
 

·
Navy Vet Search & Rescue
Joined
·
8,842 Posts
Too bad the wife and your new toy don't get along with each other. :wink: The carb work will need to be done on a bench so you could always remove them and take them to your work area. At least that way you are still making progress while you wait on the inspection date.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,601 Posts
i just noticed this was an OLD post to give u the answer =/ any way did u fixed it?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
I developed the same problem with my 1995 p-14 Kawasaki. Glad I always carry spare fuses took three more to get me back home, only 7 miles. The first one went when I turned off the bike when I got to my destination. The second one went as I turned a corner and was trying to get into the left lane so I could make a turn. The third went when I shut the bike off at home. After seeing these posts about the fuse block being the culprit I immediately went out and looked at mine. Even though the fuses were being held tightly in place the receptacle the fuse went into was fairly tarnished so I proceeded to clean the metal ears and put a new fuse in. Rode for a couple of hours and didn't have a problem so I hope it's fixed.

The fuses were very hot to the touch, and had melted the end pieces free. one even check out as being good still you could see just a little of the solder had melted on it.

Would love to know more about the new style fuse block that was mentioned so if I have to replace this one I could use the newer style of fuses and not have to worry about the thing anymore.

Everyone knows how it is. Once you have a problem like this it takes some time to get your confidence back for going places. Your always waiting for the other shoe to drop.

dazed&confussed
1995 KZ1000 P-14
1971 Cougar 429 CJ
1989 Mustang Cobra twin Turbo
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,328 Posts
Squeezing the fuse clips for the glass tubed fuses will reduce the chance of fuse failure. Remove the fuse and take a pair of needle nose pliers and carefully bend the clip so it is tighter gripping the fudse.

It will help while the fuse is out of the clip to take some 400-600 grit sandpaper and polish the fuse holders. I do this to my 82 GPZ1100 B2 every so many years followed by a spritz of electrical contact cleaner(NOT WD-40!)
made by a company in San Diego called Deoxit. deoxit.com - Home of DeoxIT - CAIG Laboratories, Inc. is their website. I think it can be purchased at Radio Shack.

A way to trouble shoot repeated blowing of fuses is pretty simple:

I go to the nearest Radio Shack or electronic supply house and purchase a 12 volt D.C. buzzer and a 12 volt light and holder. Some 16 gauge wire(maybe 4ft), some alligator clips(4),Solder or have someone make up two test devices for you consisting of a light set up with clips and the buzzer the same way.

Fully charge the bikes battery as this will be the power source for the test.
Disconnect the positive battery terminal and put either the buzzer or the light between the positive battery terminal and the now disconnected positive battery cable.

If there is a short the light will come on or the buzzer will sound(depending on what is hooked up) Now the fun begins as circuits will have to be disconnected untill the light/buzzer quits. This will narrow down on where the short is.

I'd look for rubbing or pinched wires in the handlebar switch pods, and where the main wire bundle flexes going to the headlight. Shorts can develope inside wire bundles and may have a spot or two where the insulation has rubbed through causing intermittant failure.
 

·
GHOSTRIDER
Joined
·
3,361 Posts
Familiar Symptoms!!!

I found a 'bare' lead under the battery box, but that didn't help the problem(though it did take out the regulator b4 I found it!). what finally fixed it was swapping the fuse block for a modern one w/ blade type fuses. Evidently the old tube type brass ears weren't holding tight & generated high resistance....that equals heat. Melt city.

Much nicer now!
:toetap: Ive made several upgrades to the electrical systems on my bike over the winter,halogen head light,ignition system,signal lights,and hours replacing connectors,retaping,etc. I took a day trip to Kansas City to show off the new look to the old bike and 75 miles into the trip, travelling south on Interstate 29, the bike suddenly died at 70mph!:eek: It had been running strong and smooth and then nothing,no lights,no emergency flashers,no idiot lights at the ignition,nothing ,dead! The first thing I checked were the fuses and all three appeared to be good,that is the metallic strip inside each glass fuse was intact and unburnt! I then began checking everything else,tank off,side covers pulled, I looked for any and all possibilities,still nothing! the battery was up,I finally returned to the fuse box and decided to jump the fuses and saw a fragment of solder roll by inside the glass of the 20amp fuse,under closer inspection,the prongs showed signs heat discoloration!I popped in a new fuse and that bike lit up like a Christmas tree! It has run perfectly since! But I am still aware of the fact that the primary ignition circuit is functioning at the very peak of its capabilities and after some tests and reading you fellas experiences, Im about to resolve to this conclusion!Heat is electricity's worst enemy,heat and time will compromise the integrity of any once new electrical circuit! The weakest link,or connection in this case, is going to be that 30 year old fuse box! I plan to replace mine with a new box with blade fuses! This upgrade will only be as good as the new wire connections to the new box are!Maximizing the current and minimizing resistance is the key.Until I find something else wrong,somewhere else in the primary circuit,this is the theory Im going with.Any other ideas are more than welcome:biggrin: Good Luck!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
400 Posts
I too have had this happen, but only once. The bike died for no apparent reason and it turned out the main fuse had blown. I assumed it was because I had been riding with the 2 pursuit lights on for about 20 minutes.
It should tell me something that the only thing that came in the radio box was a box of fuses.
I would be curious to hear where to buy a modern fuse block, model # etc.
I have a friend who is an electrical wizz, I will ask his opinion.
Greg58
 

·
GHOSTRIDER
Joined
·
3,361 Posts
Good Info! Thank You, Mike!!!

Squeezing the fuse clips for the glass tubed fuses will reduce the chance of fuse failure. Remove the fuse and take a pair of needle nose pliers and carefully bend the clip so it is tighter gripping the fudse. :

It will help while the fuse is out of the clip to take some 400-600 grit sandpaper and polish the fuse holders. I do this to my 82 GPZ1100 B2 every so many years followed by a spritz of electrical contact cleaner(NOT WD-40!)
made by a company in San Diego called Deoxit. deoxit.com - Home of DeoxIT - CAIG Laboratories, Inc. is their website. I think it can be purchased at Radio Shack.

A way to trouble shoot repeated blowing of fuses is pretty simple:

I go to the nearest Radio Shack or electronic supply house and purchase a 12 volt D.C. buzzer and a 12 volt light and holder. Some 16 gauge wire(maybe 4ft), some alligator clips(4),Solder or have someone make up two test devices for you consisting of a light set up with clips and the buzzer the same way.

Fully charge the bikes battery as this will be the power source for the test.
Disconnect the positive battery terminal and put either the buzzer or the light between the positive battery terminal and the now disconnected positive battery cable.

If there is a short the light will come on or the buzzer will sound(depending on what is hooked up) Now the fun begins as circuits will have to be disconnected untill the light/buzzer quits. This will narrow down on where the short is.

I'd look for rubbing or pinched wires in the handlebar switch pods, and where the main wire bundle flexes going to the headlight. Shorts can develope inside wire bundles and may have a spot or two where the insulation has rubbed through causing intermittant failure.
Hey,Good idea Mike<Thanks!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
400 Posts
Yeah Greg,let me know what his take on this whole theory is,If you dont mind.Thanks, Michael Hill @ Ghostrider industries

Hi Michael, I talked with my friend about this and he thinks it makes sense. Since it seems to be a common problem for a lot of these older rides. He said we can find what we need at NAPA. He is going to help me with this when it warms up around here, I'm sure we will do it right with solder and shrink tubing.
Greg58
 

·
GHOSTRIDER
Joined
·
3,361 Posts
Hi Michael, I talked with my friend about this and he thinks it makes sense. Since it seems to be a common problem for a lot of these older rides. He said we can find what we need at NAPA. He is going to help me with this when it warms up around here, I'm sure we will do it right with solder and shrink tubing.
Greg58
:biggrin: Good morning Greg, Thanks for the "Hollorback"!:wink: I also found a what looks to be a stock replacement fuse box at a place in the "UK"called "Zpower". They carry a hard to find rear gas tank grommet I need for $5 bucks,and $30 bucks for the fuse box, dont know what the shipping's going to cost until Monday,Ill let you know.:biggrin:
 
1 - 20 of 28 Posts
Top