03-08-2015, 09:36 AM #1
Updated Cdi & Stator Grounding Question
So when updating a 96-97 sl900 or sl1050 the instructions are to eliminate the small grounding
wire that goes to the battery. I have read various "tech tips" explaining that the ground is
provided through the stator. (i'm assuming through the block).
And then the later versions (gen III) pvl systems are doing the same.
Having rebuilt a few engines, I have found the negative cable (block to battery) to be corroded
and if you peel the insulation off the wire its black and seems burned, making it a poor conductor
and probably causing a number of issues. Since this is the only wire that provides a negative,
to the system, wouldn't the small wire be a good thing to remain so it provides a direct ground to
the electrical system, especially with these domestic engines that need a strong battery to provide
a strong spark.
03-08-2015, 11:17 AM #2
03-08-2015, 11:39 AM #3
Extra grounds should not be an issue, but looking at it this way, your Main ground cable becomes corroded. what Gauge is that groud wire? i think around a 6....so you end up with his resistance due to the corrosion on the big ground wire, so now. your relying on that small what 16-18 gauge wire...that will burn up QUICK.
03-08-2015, 11:41 AM #4
- Join Date
- Jul 2007
- near Toronto, Canada
Revised/updated electrical box grounding for red domestic engines, thin black wire
If there is corrosion and electrical resistance at the engine block connection for the heavy black battery negative cable, that is a big problem. Not only will the starter motor crank more slowly than it should, but the entire electrical system will be compromised.
If the thin secondary black wire to the battery is allowed to remain, it becomes a hazard if the main battery cable is not 100% good.
When that starter motor engages and draws heavy power flow, the thin black wire is in no way capable of carrying that load. There is real risk of the thin black wire burning out or possibly causing an electrical fire.
It may seem counter intuitive to remove a grounding wire. My understanding is that the secondary wire cannot help if the main battery cable is not already in good working order. If the main cable is not good, the thin secondary wire is simply a liability and will also fail. So not a useful thing.
Another downside of having that thin black wire to the battery is it can mask a main battery cable that is just beginning to fail. In the early stages, part of the starter motor power will flow through the partially corroded or loose main cable and part will flow through the thin cable. The engine still starts, so the rider may think everything is OK.
As the main cable corrosion progresses over time the amount of starter motor power forced through the thin cable increases, until one day the thin cable just cannot take any more abuse and it burns out or possibly starts a fire.
My view is that it is better to have the main battery cable corrosion problem discovered earlier, since the engine won't crank at full speed and may not start at all. No risk of thin wire burnout since it is not there.
Once the engine is started and running, if the main heavy battery cable is providing a good solid connection between battery and engine, again there is no need for a thin black wire to the battery. If the main battery cable is not so good, that needs proper repair, not a workaround bypassing with a thin wire.
I view the engine crank case itself as the reference point for all electrical grounds, not the battery negative post. That thin black wire to the battery negative was a poor design on the original red engines. The thin black wire should have gone directly to the engine case, not the battery negative post.
Polaris eventually realized this and in later years factory production they re-routed the electrical box ground to the engine case. As part of the Gen III update they simply combined this with the stator cable and stator frame bolt grounding at the front of the engine.
Thinking about it now, it seems advisable that original Gen I and Gen II red engine ignitions that have not been updated should have the thin black wire moved from the battery negative post to a grounding bolt on the engine itself. This should provide the same benefits and safety as the Gen III revised/update ground wiring for electrical box ground.
Can you have too many ground wires?
Yes, if they are of the wrong wire size or connecting the wrong things together.
Last edited by K447; 03-08-2015 at 12:01 PM.
03-08-2015, 01:17 PM #5
Thanks for the response guys, really good stuff here - I can see now, how it would be a problem if the main
cable isn't 100%. guess the solution for me since I ride in salt water is inspect the cable at the end of each
season or replace it 3-5 years.
03-08-2015, 01:44 PM #6
- Join Date
- Jul 2007
- near Toronto, Canada
If the cable end is too corroded or not trustworthy, replace it.
Spray or coat the cable end and the case hole with Fluid Film or similar protectant. Assemble, torque to spec. Spray some more protectant. Reapply as needed to maintain protection. Every so often remove the bolt and inspect the cable. Should be clean metal if the protection is working.
Do the same thing at the battery posts and at the starter motor cable connection. And the starter motor mounting bolts.
It is possible to maintain a salt water PWC well enough that corrosion is not a major concern, but it requires some effort to stay ahead of it. Fresh water rinse after each ride, all around the engine area and the jet pump, is a good practice. Reapply protectant if it gets washed away.
Do not use WD-40, it does not protect long term.
Users Browsing this Thread
There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)
By Spsnando in forum Polaris Open DiscussionReplies: 3Last Post: 07-03-2013, 06:11 AM
WTB - Parts Updated CDI and Stator for 1050By Drkvampire2001 in forum Polaris ClassifiedsReplies: 4Last Post: 03-04-2013, 07:51 PM
By bgaidan in forum Polaris Open DiscussionReplies: 7Last Post: 08-23-2012, 01:27 PM
By mattdub in forum Polaris Open DiscussionReplies: 29Last Post: 07-11-2010, 09:19 AM
By john zigler in forum Polaris ClassifiedsReplies: 1Last Post: 05-06-2009, 09:53 AM