Page 1 of 1

Leader Electrical fault

Posted: Thu Feb 22, 2018 3:12 pm
by Trevorc
Took the Leader out for a run following a 2 month rest in the garage. Surprise, it started 2nd kick and ran really well until I slowed to turn right.The engine died then revved died and revved. I quickly realized it was in time with the indicators.
I pulled over and turned on the lights - ok on side lights but killed the engine on dipped and main. The bike restarted first try with all lights and indicators turned off.
I obviously have an electrical problem, but any ideas where I start?
Things were ok prior to today's trip out
6 volt system with standard ignition and positive earth
New battery fully charged showing 6.5 volts
Amp meter reads positive when engine running
If bike left unused , the battery goes flat after 4 to 5 days if not on trickle charger.

Re: Leader Electrical fault

Posted: Thu Feb 22, 2018 3:52 pm
by iansoady
I would start by looking at earths - these can cause all sorts of problems.

If the battery goes flat I'd also be thinking about the rectifier. I fitted a solid state one to my Arrow.

Re: Leader Electrical fault

Posted: Fri Feb 23, 2018 7:58 am
by ian williams
could be the battery and to find out put the headlights on and see if it conks out like it does when you have the indicators running .

you might have a charged battery at the time you go out but it may lose charge after a while hence the engine missing .

check the alternator is working etc .

on my leader i had problems with the indicators not working properly and found the wires behind headlight were the area of trouble along with the horn wire as well , basically the wiring loom runs close to the the forks and tops of suspension units and can rub and get caught up when you turn the forks .

not sure if only arrows use plastic caps on top of suspension and leader doesnt but my leader is an early 1958 one and has no caps and this leaves the shock absorber threads exposed and able to catch the loom .

i had 4 wires chafed or broken behind the headlight due to this and had to repair them .

it can be a bit of a job to get at the wiring to work on it but the headlight comes out easily so you can look at the wiring .

years ago when i used the bike as a teenager it conked out on me one night in 1982 and was missing an coughing etc and eventually stopped dead
that turned out to be the alternator gone and needed replacing , i am now riding the bike again and using the alternator that was fitted back then and it is ok .

my AJS dynamo failed a while back and i didnt know about it until the lights went dead after i pushed the horn button one day , then found oil in the dynamo , so i rebuilt it and all is fine now .

measure your voltage output at the centre terminal out of the rectifier on the leader and see if it is providing the right voltages , if using a analog meter you will see the needle swinging between about 5 and 8 volts .
good idea to fit in line fuse of about 10 amps in the negative line from the battery just in case you get a short anytime .

look under handlebars as there are wires that pass through holes in the top of cubby box and also down inside cubby box where the steering lock is as the wires are close there too for catching ..

hope you sort it without much trouble


Re: Leader Electrical fault

Posted: Fri Feb 23, 2018 1:06 pm
by Trevorc
Thanks guys (2 Ians) . Had a quick look round this morning. Fuses all ok and loom is relatively new. Was after a quick fix but nothing obvious from visual inspection.
As a point of interest battery is showing 4.7 v ( stood overnight) but now have no lights , indicators , horn etc. (Haven't tried to fire it up).
Looks like I'm in for the long haul "elimination" route. - where did I put that multi meter?

Re: Leader Electrical fault

Posted: Fri Feb 23, 2018 3:22 pm
by iansoady
It would be worth charging the battery off the bike and seeing whether it still loses its charge overnight. If so, it's the battery - if not something like the rectifier.