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Refurbishing the TCI Unit!

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PostAuthor: slowpoke » Sat Jan 16, 2010 9:27 pm

Matthew";p="189977 wrote:probably for vibration and corrosion resistance.
just needs to be non conductive n easy-ish to remove.


THe "stuff" is not easily removed. It is like a silicone substance that is intertwined with the circuts. I soaked it with acetone and was able to remove some of it but the coveres on the capasters comes of too, so be careful. picked off most of the "stuff" and then soaked the board again in acetone just enough to cover the board to try and loosen its grip but after 3 or so hours of soaking and picking there is still alot left.
1985 Virago 700 bobber build DONE!! -for sale


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Re: Refurbishing the TCI Unit!

PostAuthor: cdjohnson88 » Thu Feb 04, 2010 10:04 am

I pulled my TCI last night, and there were five white wires on one of the connectors. The one in the picture only has four on both. Maybe that's what's missing? Perhaps other components from the missing circuit were removed as well.. don't have it in front of me to compare.

If anyone has a close up picture of a "bad" soldered connection I'd appreciate it... I don't have much experience with soldering and don't want to mess around with it unless I need to.

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Re: Refurbishing the TCI Unit!

PostAuthor: disturbedbonsai » Sat Feb 20, 2010 3:53 pm

Pulled my TCI today and it looks completely different to the one shown in this thread. Which model is that one from.

Mine is an '89 model XV1100

Below are some pics of it - box is plastic but to get in you need to leaver out the side with the connectors from inside the rest of it

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Anyway, I could not find anything wrong with the unit even though I've had a bit of trouble with it running on 1 when starting from cold. Holding the throttle at around 2500rpm for 20-30 seconds generally gets the second cylinder to eventually fire intermitantly and then settle in. i thought it may be a TCI problem hence why i pulled it.
Denby, Derbyshire, UK
1989 XV1100
- K&N air filter
- custom stainless steel 2:1 exhaust
- Hagon Classic 3 rear shocks
- Hagon dual rate fork springs
- Stainless steel braided brake lines
- 10" black ape bars
- Saddleman lowboy seat
- Oversize rear tyre (150/90-15)
- Custom front and rear mud guards
- LED rear lights
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PostAuthor: Xumi » Sun Feb 21, 2010 1:06 am

You will want to start your own thread - you'll get more help that way.

In general, you want to eliminate All other possibilities before chasing the TCI - They are pretty stable devices, and usually the symptoms you describe are caused by other things.

Have you:
Checked battery voltage?
Tried new plugs?
Eliminated Vacuum leaks?
Cleaned the carburetors?
Sync'd the carburetors?
Cleaned ALL electrical connectors thoroughly?
Made sure you have a good ground from battery to frame?
Checked cylinder compression?
Checked coil resistance?

If you get through all of these (and are SURE of them) - then suspect TCI.

Holler if you need help with any of the above (in another thread, preferably)
1981 XV750 - Rescued garage queen, restoration in progress
1979 XS650 (Lady of the Lake) - Barn find, restored, sold
1995 VN1500 - Daily driver

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PostAuthor: disturbedbonsai » Sun Feb 21, 2010 7:09 am

Sorry

Just put my situation in to let you know why I bothered pulling it in the first place. I'll get the problem sorted eventually. I have checked everything you've listed except the compression. It just seems like an electrical fault and runs fine once warmed with only a drop out at idle very very rarely.

I posted the pics as I thought that this thread was for all TCI's (seeing as there is no mention of specifics in the title, text or forum area) and so I posted the pics to show what the different TCI looked like inside and out. I'm assuming that the orininal pics are showing a 750 or 920 TCI.
Denby, Derbyshire, UK
1989 XV1100
- K&N air filter
- custom stainless steel 2:1 exhaust
- Hagon Classic 3 rear shocks
- Hagon dual rate fork springs
- Stainless steel braided brake lines
- 10" black ape bars
- Saddleman lowboy seat
- Oversize rear tyre (150/90-15)
- Custom front and rear mud guards
- LED rear lights
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PostAuthor: grazingazer » Sun Feb 21, 2010 8:55 am

the thread was for a 1986 xv700 tci...this might help: LINK
if you're asking for help please include the year and model of the bike in your signature
then turn your signature on

my bike is a modified 1981 virago xv75012927the rockabilly rat
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PostAuthor: disturbedbonsai » Sun Feb 21, 2010 9:30 am

Thanks Graz

Read that thread before and have cleaned all the electrical connections I could find. refitted the TCI this morning having fully cleaned that up as well and still have the 1 cylinder til warm problem.

I'll start a new thread later if i feel i need more help solving it
Denby, Derbyshire, UK
1989 XV1100
- K&N air filter
- custom stainless steel 2:1 exhaust
- Hagon Classic 3 rear shocks
- Hagon dual rate fork springs
- Stainless steel braided brake lines
- 10" black ape bars
- Saddleman lowboy seat
- Oversize rear tyre (150/90-15)
- Custom front and rear mud guards
- LED rear lights
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PostAuthor: Xumi » Mon Feb 22, 2010 1:00 am

Good luck in sorting it out - I'd still want to eliminate compression - especially because it's temperature related. Not that it couldn't be electrical, just that the main thing that is changing as the motor warms up is mechanical tolerances.
Pistons, walls, rings, valves, seats all heat up, causing tolerances to change, which can change the compression (test the bike both cold and hot), so that you have an internal leak when cold that then warms itself up enough to make a good mate.

Now it is true that electronics heat up too, and cold solder joints can work when warm and not when cold as well... so it's definitely possible..
1981 XV750 - Rescued garage queen, restoration in progress
1979 XS650 (Lady of the Lake) - Barn find, restored, sold
1995 VN1500 - Daily driver

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PostAuthor: Xumi » Mon Feb 22, 2010 1:30 am

I just posted a KB article on cold solder joints - you can find it here:
Link

Good luck!
Xumi
1981 XV750 - Rescued garage queen, restoration in progress
1979 XS650 (Lady of the Lake) - Barn find, restored, sold
1995 VN1500 - Daily driver

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Re: Refurbishing the TCI Unit!

PostAuthor: anaman51 » Tue Feb 23, 2010 6:30 pm

There's another sort of "cold joint" that needs to be mentioned, and that's what happens when a joint is incorrectly soldered in the first place. For those who have little or no experience soldering, it's tempting to get the joint ready to go, heat the solder on the iron, and let it drip onto the joint until it's covered. The problem with this is that although the joint is covered with solder, there's no solder actually inside the joint itself. That leaves a hiding place for hidden corrosion and a bad connection you can't spot by looking at it. Here's the deal:

When you prepare to solder a joint, the way to go about it is to use the soldering iron to heat the joint, not the solder. Hold the point of the iron firmly on the bare joint until the joint itself gets hot enough to "draw" the solder into itself without the solder touching the iron at all. That way, the whole inside of the joint is filled with solder, it leaves no room for corrosion and you get a good, solid connection. Remember, heat the joint, not the solder! When the joint's hot enough, it will melt the solder and draw it in, and that's as close to permanent as you're going to get with solder.

Dan
:con: An analog man in a digital world.

'81 XV750---Mods: Battery ground modification, forward controls, four brush starter, Jardine slip-on exhaust, custom seat.

Riding my Virago is knowing pure freedom. :chop:


PLEASE RIDE SAFELY!
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Re: Refurbishing the TCI Unit!

PostAuthor: Xumi » Tue Feb 23, 2010 6:51 pm

anaman51";p="195044 wrote:There's another sort of "cold joint" that needs to be mentioned, and that's what happens when a joint is incorrectly soldered in the first place. For those who have little or no experience soldering, it's tempting to get the joint ready to go, heat the solder on the iron, and let it drip onto the joint until it's covered. The problem with this is that although the joint is covered with solder, there's no solder actually inside the joint itself. That leaves a hiding place for hidden corrosion and a bad connection you can't spot by looking at it. Here's the deal:

When you prepare to solder a joint, the way to go about it is to use the soldering iron to heat the joint, not the solder. Hold the point of the iron firmly on the bare joint until the joint itself gets hot enough to "draw" the solder into itself without the solder touching the iron at all. That way, the whole inside of the joint is filled with solder, it leaves no room for corrosion and you get a good, solid connection. Remember, heat the joint, not the solder! When the joint's hot enough, it will melt the solder and draw it in, and that's as close to permanent as you're going to get with solder.

Dan


You make a good point, Dan, that cold solder can also be caused by improper technique when hand soldering, though the majority of TCI issues are going to be caused by wave machines, not hand soldering.

Also, it is actually very easy to spot cold hand solder - Look at the shape of the joint vertically.... If it is convex in shape (more like a ball), it's likely cold. If it is concave in shape (like a tent with a too tall center pole) then the solder was able to wick onto the lead and pad correctly. Another inspection point for hand soldering is to look at the component side of the board - if there is solder present and it appears to be one with the ring/pad on the component side, then that is a solid joint. If there is no solder, it is likely cold. If it partly fills the hole, it will probably be ok on most simple boards like our TCI.

The technique I describe in my cold solder fix should well prevent this type of problem, as it has the solder being fed from opposite side of the joint as the iron (basic soldering technique).

I don't expect people to be able to teach people to use blade irons and wipe techniques on SMT packages, but if they follow the technique, they'll do alright, especially with a little practice.

A second, faster way to fix cold solder (if you have moderate electronics soldering experience at minimum) is to use a high silver content solder (80% works great), and to "re-flow" the solder by over-wetting the tip, coming at the joint at 90 degrees to the solder slope, waiting for the wet solder to melt the existing solder, and feed about 1/2" of silver solder from the other side... Using this technique I can resolder the whole TCI in less than 10 minutes, but I do NOT recommend this for the beginner, lest you end up with bridges and balls all over the board.

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PostAuthor: Pinhead » Wed Apr 28, 2010 9:25 pm

anaman51";p="189979 wrote:Let me get this straight---this is off an '86 XV700, so wouldn't this be a CDI instead of a TCI? We're not talking about the old TCI under the tank on the first gen models, are we?

Dan


BTT! Is this the same spark control box as would be on an '81 XV750?
1981 XV750 Virago.

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PostAuthor: totallyredvirago » Wed Apr 28, 2010 9:36 pm

it is but it isnt.. yes it is plastic.. the insides are different.. no that one posted by disturbed is off a 1100. a 1100 will not work on a 750...
thats why we ask to do separate threads so people dont get confused on what is being worked on...dan
82 xv 750 skull on grips,levers,3rd brake and side covers.soft bags and tool bag, relay for coils, fresh inferno red, paint code PEL(red)

no time to do it right..always enough time to do it twice.
it is if is isnt :con:
If it went together easy... you forgot something.
when in doubt.... ground it out!

http://www.viragotechforum.com/viewtopic.php?f=140&t=35947 (bare bones wiring81-83 xv750)
http://www.viragotechforum.com/viewtopic.php?f=140&t=48895 (91 up xv750 bare bones)
http://www.viragotechforum.com/viewtopic.php?f=140&t=36987(84-85 xv700,1000 bare bones)

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PostAuthor: grazingazer » Wed Apr 28, 2010 9:46 pm

VIRAGOS DO NOT USE CDIs only TCIs no capcitor discharge ignitions only ground interrupt circuitry
if you're asking for help please include the year and model of the bike in your signature
then turn your signature on

my bike is a modified 1981 virago xv75012927the rockabilly rat
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Re: Refurbishing the TCI Unit!

PostAuthor: grnrngr » Thu Apr 29, 2010 1:10 am

My TCI was already hacked when I got the bike (xv500), managed to get it sorta running anyway, but closer examination turned up a fried resistor, one of the 4 big blue ones. The pic that shows the caps and what they do is nice, but I'm assuming the lines from the circled caps merely point to the descriptive label rather than the associated resistors? is there a way to check the ICs for possible damage? any idea what would make a resistor pop? they're not usually prone to failure on their own...I actually bought another bike so I could test the TCI off that one, seems to work good but I'm sorta worried if there might have been a problem outside the box that could have caused a problem inside?? shorted alternator/stator or whathaveyou? any ideas? and being a guy that likes to go a little faster, I wouldn't mind removing rev limiters and such if I knew where they were..has anyone done a "performance upgrade" to a TCI box? or a have more definitive diagram of which circuits do what on the board?
'83 XV500 Red (2+)
'72 Honda 750 K2
'77 Honda 750A

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PostAuthor: Xumi » Thu Apr 29, 2010 2:15 am

Most likely the resister overheated, and the big blue ones are load resistors, which I believe (I'll know more in a few weeks..) is acting as a current limiter, taking a large amount of current while the coil is charging... If the output transistor shorted E-C, that would cause a continuous current flow through the resistor, and overheat it.

As to the TCI, they could be tested with an O-Scope and a signal generator, once test points have been developed off of a known good unit.

Speaking of, looks like I may have a lead on a decent 2 channel scope in exchange for a little carb work. Now where the hell am I going to get a signal generator on the cheap...?
1981 XV750 - Rescued garage queen, restoration in progress
1979 XS650 (Lady of the Lake) - Barn find, restored, sold
1995 VN1500 - Daily driver

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Re: Refurbishing the TCI Unit!

PostAuthor: james_b123 » Sun May 15, 2011 5:03 pm

Did you manage to repair it ?
This is new
newer ignitor repair

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