Chelsea tractorsApril 25 2012 at 9:03 PM
rex (Login thestinkiestbob)
Response to Dear sir,
The bastards haven't called me in for work again so I'm not being anywhere near Chelsea tomorrow. That means no work at all so far this month. Not good.
I figured you had a three phase alternator as that's what pretty much all Harley's have had for yonks as far as I know and although your bike is a new and improved Harley there's probably no reason to mess with the good old tried and true operation of a standard long lived alternator.
No doubt your regulator is a nice newfangled electronic one and your other electrical gubbins are probably very modern, but at the heart of it all is a 1940's alternator design just because is just works.
I don't know what your particular design is but on regular alternators that live in the air (like what mine's supposed to be) they are sometimes a bit too protected and can overheat enough to unsolder things like the phase wires at some point. That's pretty much the only problem MZ alternators ever had and I cured mine 20 years ago by drilling certain well placed air holes so the circulation kept it all cool.
Some alternators live in the oil, but I bet your's is very hermetically sealed behind a well gasketed cover somewhere. When you find it have a good old snoop around and see if you can trace the grounding fault. If it's just unsoldered something at a terminal or connector it might be able to be fixed. I fixed a few MZ ones on other people's bikes that way. But if it's grounding out in the windings there's not much you can really do about it.