Electrical Grounding to the frame...... - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 13 Old 06-04-2008, 02:24 PM Thread Starter
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Electrical Grounding to the frame......

What difference does it make by either sending all electrical grounding wires to the battery negative post as oppose to grounding them to the frame?
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post #2 of 13 Old 06-04-2008, 02:34 PM
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Grounding copper wires through aluminum can cause a galvanic reaction that can weaken the aluminum. Usually not a good idea for stress members such as a motorcycle frame.

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post #3 of 13 Old 06-04-2008, 03:03 PM
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Grounding copper wires through aluminum can cause a galvanic reaction that can weaken the aluminum. Usually not a good idea for stress members such as a motorcycle frame.
I've heard this stated before, and it always brings up two questions in my mind:

a) Has anyone ever had a frame member failure where this was proven to be the cause?

b) A lot of main electrical cables, especially main feeder lines in homes are aluminum wire. Why isn't this considered a problem there, since they attach to copper members, such as the terminals in breaker boxes?

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post #4 of 13 Old 06-04-2008, 03:10 PM
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simplest method of grounding stuff on a bike it to run 1 wire from the negative terminal to the battery to a ground buss,

I have mine located on the front of the trunk space under the seat



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post #5 of 13 Old 06-04-2008, 03:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Xavier6162 View Post
What difference does it make by either sending all electrical grounding wires to the battery negative post as oppose to grounding them to the frame?
As a trained electronic tech, frame grounding is one of those things that has always weirded me out about automotive wiring. I mean, if it's supposed to be a door panel, floor pan, front bumper or whatever, why would you want to have all those points tied to one of the battery terminals? Is it supposed to save money on wiring or what? Practically speaking, on cars I've owned, a lot of fuses got blown when wires came adrift and grounded themselves by mistake.

The galvanic action argument between copper and aluminum has some merit. Automobile connections used to fail when body panels rotted out.

I think the real reason for running separate power and ground leads has to do with correcting a system that was just plain wrong in the first place, however, since computers are now part of these bikes, having the ability to precisely control where signals and power flow is a very good idea.

This is speculation, mind you, but as a life-long tech, it just made fundamental sense to me when I discovered the Vstrom was wired the way it is.

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post #6 of 13 Old 06-04-2008, 03:52 PM
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^^^^^^^^^^

Since most of my farkles are on the front of the bike, I just run a 10 gauge wire from the battery neg to the front of the bike somewhere, then attach a half-dozen or so short pieces of thinner wire, like 14 gauge to that wire. Crimp on (and solder if you're anal) a male bullet connector to each short piece of wire, weather-proof the connections, and you've got a grounding buss (I call it a grounding spider) ready to go for whenever you need a new ground.

When you add a new farkle just cut the supplied ground wire to length, slap on a female bullet connector, and plug it in. Cheap and relatively foolproof. Also, if one of your farkles starts acting up you know where the ground is.

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post #7 of 13 Old 06-04-2008, 04:39 PM
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When I used to sell Audi's much was made of the possible reaction when connecting Aluminum body panels to steel parts; in particular in the presence of water and salt. I don't think the aluminum part will fail so much as the connection can be very susceptible to corrosion which can then in the long run cause failures.

I sell Porsche's now, which use a lot of Aluminum, and I don't seem to hear as much about these issues.

As far as aluminum wiring, was there not a lot of concerns with potential fires as a result of the same corrosion when connecting to non-aluminum metals?

..Tom


[QUOTE=SVDon;245105]

a) Has anyone ever had a frame member failure where this was proven to be the cause?
...
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post #8 of 13 Old 06-04-2008, 04:51 PM
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Quote:
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As far as aluminum wiring, was there not a lot of concerns with potential fires as a result of the same corrosion when connecting to non-aluminum metals?
Fixtures that take either Al or Cu wiring have been in use for decades. In the old days they used to sell a paste called Noalox for terminals that weren't the Al/Cu type.

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post #9 of 13 Old 06-09-2008, 11:35 PM
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Put the grounds in a crimp on eye and be done with it. They're steel, and cheap. No worries about possible galvanic corrosion on your frame...which would take a very long time before it affected any structural integrity.

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post #10 of 13 Old 06-30-2008, 06:46 PM
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Grounding to the frame

For Audio Equipment grounding to the frame is a bad idea, spurrious ignition noises, alternator whine etc can be picked up by the big antenna (frame) you also never know where the problem is when checking out a problem. If you ground back to the battery you always know where to look. When I wire a bike for audio equipment I keep the circuits seperate, route one power cable and ground to the front of the bike, attach this to a terminal block with 4 + 4- terminals, then secure all wiring to accessories via the terminal block and crimped and soldered lug type terminals. things do not come loose and if one has a problem you know where to look for the problem. If I do have ignition noise in the system I first try to isolate it by disconnecting one audio device at a time. If this does not eliminate the problem I will change the type of wire from 12 gauge unshielded to coax cable using the interior copper wire only for + and a seperate coax cable for the _. If this does not quiet things down I then add a noise filter.
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