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Discussion Starter #1
Hey guys I was riding around two weeks ago and the CDI box started smoking....

The battery has been dead for a while now but i've just been pull starting it and it runs and sometimes charges up and will run the lights or restart after running a while.

I tested the yellow wires to the ECM and my stator is not burnt up.

Ordered a cheap $35 ebay CDI box online and unplugged the ECM because I was told to check one thing at a time when plugging back in. Read that the ECM/regulator sometimes will fry the CDI box.

When I plugged in the CDI, turned on the key, the circuit breaker under the seat clicked off and the neutral light went off.

I've looked at the schematics, tested the white/red and white wires to see if they were shorted but they read 764 ohms and infinity to ground.

Primary coil is .8 ohms and i even tried unplugging it just in case there was a short.

I've also unplugged the black wire that goes to the stop switch, etc.

I've ordered another more expensive $65 ebay CDI box from Caltric and i'm going to try that Saturday.

Anyone have any advice? TIA
 

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The ignition on your model is DC CDI - it needs battery voltage to run - if the battery is dead and you run it or if you remove the battery and run it, it will burn out the lights and/or CDI - It needs the battery to absorb some of the energy of the charging system.

I'm going to guess you got an AC CDI box and when plugged in it created a short to ground and your circuit breaker was tripping out to protect the wiring - plug it in, turn it on with a good battery and let it click away - it will stop clicking when the CDI box burns up.
 

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I understand your CDI power requirement logic, but the way this ECU is described to work is that it only "charges" when there's a low voltage load detected otherwise the CDI runs off the coil output. I have a 99 Scrambler 400 2 stroke i've run for years and years with no battery.... I've read lots of others who also run with dead or no batteries just fine. It appears the CDI box on the 330 Magnum 00-06 models are weak or were not coated with silicone/potting well and moisture is making them go bad. I'm going to dissassemble my bad one to look at the board soon.

You may be right that it's an AC box, but i'm not frying my wires to find out. I can't find any part numbers on this cheap CDI so who knows if it got mixed up with another one at the warehouse.
 

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The 99 400 has an AC CDI - it also has a single phase alternator to charge the battery - it will run forever without a battery, but it will still burn the lights out if used without a battery installed as the voltage regulator is not functional without a good battery connected to it.

Now the 03 has a DC CDI - believe whatever you want to believe, but running without a battery will burn out the CDI and the lights for the same reason, the voltage regulator is not functioning unless connected to a battery in good condition that will accept a charge. Running with a dead battery that will not take a charge is the same as running with no battery. I don't care what kind of battery you choose, but if you want the CDI and lights to last, install a battery.

And, yes, the Chinese do not mark the CDI boxes AC or DC, it's up to the purchaser to select the correct one for the system they are working on - example; my Chinese parts supplier sells a CDI for ALL Polaris 90's - in the package are two CDI units - an AC for Polaris 90 two stroke (Dinli) and a DC unit for four stroke (Aeon) models. I was working on a Aeon Polaris, bought the replacement CDI unit - selected the unit that matched the size of the failed unit - turn the key on and a short time smoked it - I had by the luck of the draw put the AC CDI in the DC circuit (note - both units had the same number of plugs and wires) - I then installed the larger unit and no smoke, but no spark either - turns out the CHEAP replacement ($300 from Polaris - $35 from China) unit did not have a reverse limiter built in - when the reverse light was connected to the input of the CDI unit, it did not limit RPM, it killed the spark - it worked fine as long as the reverse light bulb was removed or otherwise disconnected from the wire going from the light to the CDI unit.

I have a degree in electronics and pretty well understand the system and am telling you that a battery is needed - you do what you want - I here to help you and will argue a point and if I am wrong, I will concede and change my way of thinking. One thing I learned on here is that it is possible to get AC from the alternator to the battery with a perfectly good rectifier, if the alternator fails in a specific way and they fail in that way about 50% of the time.
 

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Thanks for being respectful of my comprehension of the issue at hand. I've been taking stuff apart since I was 8, took electronics in high school and also have 2 year/associates degree in electronics so I understand how the innards work. I rebuild laptops, phones, car ECM's, TV's, Playstation's, etc... Soooo many bad caps. And I've learned so much by doing though not by the book. Yeah i'm like a high tech redneck on the farm here. If two of the diodes fail you would get half wave DC which would show as normal charging on a DVM. I'm just speaking from experience with my magnum 330 and an old 98 Big Boss 6x6 we had run with a dead/no battery for 8+ years now so i guess i'm lucky or the DC CDI box just finally failed because of stress or moisture. The old box actually still works, with battery it will fire up the engine and run and i get 14.2 volts so the ECM is regulating ok but the CDI box starts smoking. The Caltric box didn't come in today, USPS at it's finest will supposedly deliver it tomorrow "on time" they say. (y)
 

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@Rumblefish
Where did you study electronics? I got my degree at United Electronics Institute in Louisville KY 1972 - worked part time in a Yamaha shop to put myself through school - drove a 65 Mustang 2+2 back and forth from Illinois to KY every weekend to be with my girlfriend - we got married in 1971 - next year will mark 55 years together (50 of them married) :)
 

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I went to Tyler in the early 90's which had a partnership with ITT which is no longer in business.

I replaced the CDI box this afternoon with the one from Caltric and it's not overloading the circuit breaker, started right up so I plugged the ECM back in and it's charging the new battery at 13.4 with the lights on and 14.09v max with lights off and revving up engine so I think that's all good now. I may put an extra fuse inline between the ECM and CDI box wire just to have an extra layer of protection.

Looking at fixing the oil leak on this thing now, I ordered the o-ring to the exhaust valve cover but can't find the gasket that goes between the head and the valve cover, if there is one? Do you use 518 or RTV between those?

137916
 

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There is no gasket between the head and head cover - I don't know what 518 is and will never use RTV anyplace sealing oil or gas is required - RTV is not gas and oil resistant - I use Three Bond 1187 - it's similar to (looks the same as) Honda Bond or Yamabond - Loctite might have a similar product, but TB1187 is a tried and true product
 

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I learned about Loctite 518 (anerobic sealant) dries kinda like RTV when air is not present but flexs with flanges also and its gas/oil resistant. It's used a lot on Seadoo and Yamaha JetSki's. Its very good at sealing where aluminum and steel are mating where salt water usually would create corrosion. Do you see many of the Polaris top ends leaking oil between then head and cover?
 

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So don't bother? Just brake cleaner the outside before starting when it sits for a long time? Which reminds me I need to change the oil... ugh always something
 

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So don't bother? Just brake cleaner the outside before starting when it sits for a long time? Which reminds me I need to change the oil... ugh always something
If the oil is not running down the outside of the engine and dripping on the floor when parked, then it's not a leak, it's a seep - no, don't fret the seeps, but repair the leaks.
 
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