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- From: "Tom Brown" <tbrown@xxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Wed, 21 Mar 2007 14:11:33 -0500
- Subject: Fw: Batteries
Mark and List:
Mark, thanks for the additional info....Mark says the new BMW battery is
AGM. Sounds good. He says that Odyssey is also AGM. Also fine with me
and rings true. He says AGMs, like the newest BMW battery, are sealed. I
agree there. Says AGM is a form of lead-acid battery...sure, why not? I
don't pretend to be an expert. Batteries are black-boxes to me. In spite
of "knowing" how they work, I have no idea why they work. Please, no
emails...I don't want to know...at least, not right now.
The website Mark offers up is interesting reading. I read through several
such sites a few years ago and have forgotten near all of it. AGM, PDQ,
GMC, it's not important for me, just that my bike will start when I want it
to and that I'm taking good care of the type battery that I have. I'm
probably not going to manufacture these myself anytime in the near future,
so I just try and remember the issues relevant to my personal situation. I
can only retain about 900 million facts in my memory at any one time with my
current level of medication, so I have to budget.
My impression is that the BMW non-conventional battery was improved
sometime in '04 or beginning of '05, that the first ones weren't that good
and the new ones are pretty damned good if they're charged up correctly etc.
My 1200RT is an '05. If I need a battery, I'll probably buy another BMW
battery. I just went through a little warranty problem with BMW over
aftermarket shocks and broken suspension pieces. I won't repeat unless
there's a damned good reason to do so. I don't think the Odyssey is enough
better or cheaper to warrant my goofing around with it. It used to be a
good idea to seek out conventional batteries and avoid the BMW gel or AGM or
whatever it used to be, but these new ones seem to work well.
I bought a special charger from from Battery Tender when I bought my '04
1150RT. The new batteries (at that time maybe gel type?) had just come out.
My 1200 battery holds a charge seemingly forever, but I top it up
(electrically) now and then during the off-season with the B-T. I'm not
convinced that a new type of charger is necessary if your current charger is
low amperage and you're just using it to maintain the battery over the
winter and you're not charging it from flat or near-flat.
To top up the battery on a can-bus system like the 1200RT, you have to turn
on the keyswitch (don't start the bike), plug the B-T into the accessory
socket, then plug the B-T into the wall, then turn off the bike. When the
battery is fully charged, it will shut down the accessory socket circuit.
Last time I did this, my radar detector was switched on (It's powered off
this accessory socket circuit - from the back.) The charger kept charging
(red light on) for a full day. Normally it just takes an hour or so. When
I finally noticed and switched off the detector, the B-T went to green and
the Can-Bus circuit shut down almost immediately, indicating to me that the
battery was fully charged. High tech as all get out!
Let's see, the only other stories I've heard about batteries is that the
early Westco's would give ABS faults, even when they were new, because they
were slightly under the capacity one needs for that combination of adequate
cranking power and maintaing enough voltage to keep the ABS circuit happy,
especially on earlier Oilheads. A friend bought one of those Panasonic
batteries for his '96 RT and never had a problem with it. I don't know now
if this is typical or not. The Panasonics used to be very inexpensive.
Subject: Re: Batteries
> The newer BMW gels seem fine to me. I had one on my 1150, no problems,
> have a better one on my 1200RT, again, no problems so far. (2 seasons &
I think you'll find that the battery on your R12 is an AGM battery.
AGM is NOT gel and websites that advertize "AGM Gel batteries" are
wrong. The Odyssey battery, for example, is an AGM battery. Both
AGM and gel are forms of sealed batteries.
> lead acid and one is the RT with the 2nd Generation of gel type battery.
Not gel, AGM. Oh, and both gel and AGM are forms of lead acid batteries
Valve-Regulated Lead Acid (VRLA) batteries.
See http://www.vonwentzel.net/Battery/01.Type/index.html for some
battery info (written for the marine battery user).