Power question - Kawasaki KLR 650 Forum
2008+ KLR650 Wrenching & Mod Questions For repair, maintaining or modifying discussions related to the newly updated 2008 and beyond, Generation 2 KLR650 Motorcycle.

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post #1 of 19 Old 01-13-2019, 08:09 PM Thread Starter
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Power question

I know this has been covered, but it seems like every old thread i found took me down another road of more questions and less answers.

My Goal is to add LED Auxiliary lighting via the JNS mounts.

I have ordered and am swapping:
The headlights to Cyclops LED.
The dash to LED from super bright.
The tail light with the WOW kit from happy trails.

I am assuming this has been done before (lots) and 12V is not necessarily my strong suit...... How concerned should i be as to wattage of my LED Aux lights?

I will be using this as a commuter on mountain roads in the early mornings- hoping to see the critters a little sooner than later
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post #2 of 19 Old 01-13-2019, 10:19 PM
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Fear not; LEDs typically use less power than incandescent bulbs; the Generation 2 alternator covers your power budget adequately, IMHO.

I know it's DONE; but . . . why change the minuscule power-using OEM dash lights to LEDs? Longer-lasting than bulbs, surely; but . . . insignificant power savings, again, in my view (I could be HORRIBLY in error!).
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post #3 of 19 Old 01-14-2019, 10:04 AM
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Without doing the math, I'm pretty sure that your auxillary lights take up less power than you've gained by swapping the headlight and taillight....dash lights are minor.

Dave
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post #4 of 19 Old 01-14-2019, 10:05 AM
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Info from JeffSaline and GoMotor;

In 2005 I did a draw test on all the circuits of my Gen I, 2003, KLR650. Then I took the specs for the Gen I and did the conversion. My guess is the Gen II KLRs use about the same amount of electrickery to operate the bike.

I dug out my factory service manuals and found the specs for the A14-A17, 2000, 2001, 2002 & 2003 models at the rear of the supplement manual. It rates the alternator at 17 amps @ 7,000 rpm @ 14 volts. That puts it at about 238 watts @ 7,000 rpm @ 14 volts.

The specs at the front of the supplement rate the alternator for A1-A9 at 14 amps @ 8,000 rpm @ 14 volts. That put the earlier alternators at 196 watts @ 8,000 rpm @ 14 volts.

For the Gen II (via Clymers) it is rated at (2008-2010) 14 volts at 17 amps at 7,000 rpm. The Gen II (2011-on) is rated at 14.5 volts at 17 amps at 7,000 rpm. So for the 2008-2010 it is 238 watts and for the 2011-on it is 246.5 watts.

Here is what MY KLR used for electrickery.

- With the headlight off, key on, I got a reading of 1.51 amps. I think this only taillight & instrument lights.
- With the headlight on, key on, I got a reading of 5.43 amps. Low beam drawing 3.92 amps.
- With the headlight on high beam, key on I got a reading of 6.10 amps. High beam drawing 4.59 amps.
- With the headlight off, key on, fan on, I got a reading of 3.83 amps. Fan drawing 2.32 amps.
- With the headlight off, key on, horn blowing, I got a reading of 3.08 amps. Horn drawing 1.57 amps.
- With the headlight off, key on, Dual Star LED Brake light on, I got a reading of 1.93 amps. LED brake light drawing 0.42 amps.
- My heated grips are on a different circuit and I got readings of 1.55 amps and 2.75 amps.
- My Gr8 Design heated vest pulled 2.21 amps.
- I didn't test my heated gloves.

This was done with a battery reading only 12.05 volts

So for MY KLR650 I'm maybe using 95 watts when using the bike.

Hope this info is helpful.

Best,

Jeff
Gomotor:
I fooled around with some numbers on my gen2.
Here is what I got.

Specs for alternators from sales brochures:
gen 1 = 14 amp: gen2 = 17 amp
At 14 Volts gen1 = 196 Watts; Gen2 = 238 Watts

ELECTRICAL USAGE in Watts excluding non continuous loads like turn signals, brake lights etc for Gen2

Dash meter lights 3 x 3.4 = 10.2
Tail Light 8
Tag light 8
Low beam headlight 55
High beam light (Gen-2 only) 55
High beam indicator 3.4
Ignition system ?? unknown
----
Gen-2 = 139.6 Watts Gen-1 = 84.6 Watts
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post #5 of 19 Old 01-14-2019, 10:15 AM Thread Starter
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Awesome!

Thank you guys, the information available from all your combined experience is much appreciated.

Why the dash lights? good question, it's a cheap farkle and figured with the known issues with KLR power, any amperage I could save so much the better......And i got a few different colors to try, greens, blues and whites, all wide angle.....
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post #6 of 19 Old 01-15-2019, 01:23 AM
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And, if you're worried about current capacity (e.g., you want to power Gerbings jacket liner, gloves, pants, and socks); there's always the option of the trick high-power aftermarket stator!

(Got one, on my Generation 1.)

Since, "There's no such thing as a FREE LUNCH," reality informs us: The higher maximum output stator actually produces LESS electric power at lower rpm than the stocker; higher output at higher rpm.
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post #7 of 19 Old 01-15-2019, 12:37 PM
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Rather than calculating power draws and alternator output, I like to have a volt meter on the dash. That way there is no guessing involved.

As Damocles points out, I did the calculations and determined that my gen2 should have about 100 Watts extra to power accessories. In Houston I don't have a need for much extra power, but over Thanksgiving I rode over the Continental Divide on the way to Las Vegas and passed through some freezing temperatures with snow on the sides of the road.

At 5,000 rpm with the high beam on and 80 Watts of heated vest and 20 Watts of heated grips the Volt meter still indicated 13.8 Volts. A nice thing on the gen2 is that if your Volt meter tells you that you need a little extra charging capacity, you can turn off the high beam and pickup 50 Watts when needed.

For dash lighting, I like LED lights that have an array of small elements pointing outward. This spreads the light out across the face of the instrument illuminating the whole face better. Also, they last longer and if one element burns out, you still have the other four working for you. I stick with the white ones.
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Last edited by GoMotor; 01-15-2019 at 12:40 PM.
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post #8 of 19 Old 01-15-2019, 04:00 PM
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I have a GEN 2 2015 KLR and I run heated grips(heat demon) and run Denali light that draws 3.2 amps total. I have never had any problems with the draw, then I don't sit standing still in traffic with everything on and the high beam on. I also have a voltmeter that I look monitor.
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post #9 of 19 Old 01-15-2019, 07:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoMotor View Post
Rather than calculating power draws and alternator output, I like to have a volt meter on the dash. That way there is no guessing involved.

As Damocles points out, I did the calculations and determined that my gen2 should have about 100 Watts extra to power accessories. In Houston I don't have a need for much extra power, but over Thanksgiving I rode over the Continental Divide on the way to Las Vegas and passed through some freezing temperatures with snow on the sides of the road.

At 5,000 rpm with the high beam on and 80 Watts of heated vest and 20 Watts of heated grips the Volt meter still indicated 13.8 Volts. A nice thing on the gen2 is that if your Volt meter tells you that you need a little extra charging capacity, you can turn off the high beam and pickup 50 Watts when needed.

For dash lighting, I like LED lights that have an array of small elements pointing outward. This spreads the light out across the face of the instrument illuminating the whole face better. Also, they last longer and if one element burns out, you still have the other four working for you. I stick with the white ones.
Really need an ammeter to know whether you are consuming more than the alternator is producting. A voltmeter won’t tell you that directly. You might be able to infer it if you know at exactly what voltage reading your current draw goes negative.
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post #10 of 19 Old 01-15-2019, 07:35 PM
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Installing an ammeter is a giant pain in the ass but, to Voyager's point, it provides the best information.

What I wish was made is a small inductive ammeter with a remote head. If the ammeter could be designed to clip onto a 14 gauge wire it would be a simple matter to clip it to the white wire and then run small gauge wires to a remote head on the dash.

There must be a technical reason for not making such a thing. I know an induction ammeter is not going to be the most accurate device, but it should be good enough to tell us what we need to know on a motorsickle.

Tom [email protected]

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