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Charging an Electra

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Charging an Electra

Posted by Ian Easton at June 29. 2017

My Electra has two 6v batteries connected in series to give it a 12v system. If I want to charge them without taking them out the bike and doing them individually do I charge them at 12v or 6v?

Re: Charging an Electra

Posted by mark_woodward at June 29. 2017

You say you don't want to remove them from the bike but charge them individually in which case you need to disconnect the cable linking the +ive of one battery to the -ive of the other (thus 'splitting' them into two separate batteries) and then charge each battery at 6v (ensuring that you get the polarity correct). If you don't remove the link cable i.e. leave the batteries as one 12v package then attach your charger to the output terminals (- the wires that connect to the bike's electrical system) ( the +ive on one battery and the -ive on the other) and charge at 12v.

Unless you suspect that one of the battery's is getting 'tired' I'd opt to charge them as one 12v package (saves disconnecting cables etc.).

Re: Charging an Electra

Posted by patrick_mullen at June 29. 2017

Charge as 12V as Mark says but do remember that an Electra is wired as positive earth. So connect the charger negative lead to your battery negative terminal and connect the charger positive lead to a good earth point such as the cylinder head rather than the battery positive.

It always feels strange (to me) connecting up the charger backwards specially as I have red tape wrapped around the battery negative lead and black tape on the positive lead to remind me it's positive earth!.

 

Re: Charging an Electra

Posted by peter_holland1 at June 29. 2017

I use an Optimate charger and the Optimate connector and lead which is connected to the 12 volt battery terminals and tucks away between seat and top of battery/tool box. My Electra charges happily on this system, at 12 volts with two six volt batteries in series.

The Optimate connector, connecting charger to the bike, is polarity protected, so no fear of getting confused by the positive earth of the Electra. Tucked away, a finger pulls connector out for trickle charging.

Exposing the 12 volt battery terminals on the Electra is a tedious job with one battery is in the battery/tool box and the other under the (not QD) seat.

Peter

Re: Charging an Electra

Posted by Ian Easton at June 30. 2017

Thanksfor the help guys. I was thinking 12v was the way to go keeping them connected in series. I just wasn't confident enough to plug the charger in to see what would happen.

Re: Charging an Electra

Posted by Alan Osborn at July 01. 2017

Previously patrick_mullen wrote:

Charge as 12V as Mark says but do remember that an Electra is wired as positive earth. So connect the charger negative lead to your battery negative terminal and connect the charger positive lead to a good earth point such as the cylinder head rather than the battery positive.

It always feels strange (to me) connecting up the charger backwards specially as I have red tape wrapped around the battery negative lead and black tape on the positive lead to remind me it's positive earth!.

 

Seems a very strange thing to do put the wrong colour tape on each terminal!

By the way the idea of one 12V battery is very good, and you can get a 14Ahr battery under the seat by removing the mechanical regulator device fitted on the mud guard. The one on my Electra still worked when I removed it but the battery was either over or under charging with it, so removing it for a Zener got the charge correct.

Re: Charging an Electra

Posted by patrick_mullen at July 02. 2017

Hello Al,

The standard wiring colours of the battery leads on a Jubilee are Red for the earth lead and Translucent for the positive lead.  Now I know you are a real auto electrician so this makes sense to you but all my other vehicles (even the lawn mower) are Red/Brown for the positive lead and Black for the earth lead.

My excuse is that I was a chartered accountant when I was alive !.

Re: Charging an Electra

Posted by Alan Osborn at July 03. 2017

Previously patrick_mullen wrote:

Hello Al,

The standard wiring colours of the battery leads on a Jubilee are Red for the earth lead and Translucent for the positive lead.  Now I know you are a real auto electrician so this makes sense to you but all my other vehicles (even the lawn mower) are Red/Brown for the positive lead and Black for the earth lead.

My excuse is that I was a chartered accountant when I was alive !.

The standard colours for ALL batteries is Positive=RED Negative=Black, never mind Jubilees.....

Strange breed chartered accountants.....

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