Electrical toys

viewYou may have noticed that I am a little suspicious of the ST2 electrical system. I have been used to riding BMWs all my life and those bikes have high capacity electrical systems when compared with the Ducati. I believe that this can be made more reliable by reducing the loads on the system while bringing the bike up to date with things like low power LEDs. The other thing that would be useful is to be able to monitor the system, the best way being the use of a voltmeter. The battery is only on the bike to start it and has no function when the engine is running, the power should be supplied by the generator when running, and as long as that generator is putting out a higher voltage than the battery is, it will be charging that battery and powering everything else.

This is the voltmeter that I bought from ebay for less than £4 (€5). Link

It fits very neatly into the panel just above the fuse box and is tapped into a wire that is only live when the ignition is on. Before fitting I checked the accuracy against my garage voltmeter and found it to be good.

volt1Note that the engine is off (See the tacho) so it is showing 12.3 volts on the new battery.

volt2Here the engine is running, with the cold start lever on, at 2000rpm. noting is switched on apart from the Front LED marker light and the voltage is reading 14.1 volts. That will be chucking power into the battery that will be a little depleted due to having just started the engine.

volt3This was taken a few seconds later with the HID xenon headlight switched on, showing 13.7 volts. The additional load is: 35 watts headlight, 2 watts tail light (LED), and about 3 watts for all the instrument lights (LEDs). As the battery will have a little more charge than in the last picture the regulator rectifier will also be lowering the voltage automatically.

3 thoughts on “Electrical toys

  1. brian January 12, 2015 / 7:00 pm

    Hi Bob, glad to see you are enjoying your ‘fiddling’!!!! You should have said that you didn’t like the red stipe on the front mudguard, i’d have sent you the non-red stripe one!!! I painted it on one day when ‘playing’ with a spray can, to see what the bits looked like!!



    • rouffignac January 12, 2015 / 7:04 pm

      No offence intended Brian, as you know we all like some thing a little personal on our bikes. Hope that you find something interesting on this blog.


  2. brian January 12, 2015 / 9:13 pm

    No offence taken, Bob, it is your bike now, you can paint it pink as your desire takes you…………….:)
    I’ve done 4000 kms on the ST3, and with some fairly extreme departures from the standard suspension setting, i am getting happier with it. The engine is lovely that extra 20 hp makes breaking the speed limit even easier.


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