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  1. #1

    97 SL 900 Ignition

    Hello Everyone, I need some advice here.

    About this time last year I fried the stator and voltage Regulator in my 97 SL 900. So I purchased a used non-updated stator and a new regulator. When I went to check the timing it idled fine and when revving I noticed the timing light would stop firing above 2500ish RPMs. I re-did the spark plug boots with still no luck. After I verified the Tan wire and the MFD were not causing the issue I decided to bite the bullet on an Ignition update.

    My first stator shorted on the Red/Pur and Yellow wires in the stator housing, and drained the battery overnight. Second stator was an incorrect part. Third stator I was getting a nice spark outside of the engine, but once I installed the spark plug I got nothing. I verified this with the timing light while cranking. I checked cranking voltage at Red/Pur by the CDI and it never went below 11V. I checked the resistance readings on the Stator coils, did the Hull Effect sensor test, checked the resistance on the coils, and everything checked out. So I called the company back and they suggested to try and adjust the timing and see if I can get it to fire. Still no luck and after calling them back got a complete replacement upgrade kit.

    This weekend I got the new kit installed and now I am having the same issue as before with no spark when the spark plugs are installed. I was so frustrated that I did not get out the multi-meter to verify anything, I am fairly sure the battery was OK since it is on a tender.

    So my question is am I overlooking something? Should I try changing the coil? I think I have the coil where cyl 2 and 3 are swapped.

    Thanks,
    Brad


  2. #2
    casey67's Avatar
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    Having spark with one spark plug removed is a classic sign of a weak battery.
    Another person recently had the same issue, a stronger battery did start his ski.

    The 11 volts on the CDI red/pur wire is critical, are you confident your meter is accurate ?

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by casey67 View Post
    Having spark with one spark plug removed is a classic sign of a weak battery.
    Another person recently had the same issue, a stronger battery did start his ski.

    The 11 volts on the CDI red/pur wire is critical, are you confident your meter is accurate ?
    Yes I borrowed a Fluke digital meter from work and it matched with my cheap meter cranking with spark plugs installed. I have also checked and cleaned the ground connections.

  4. #4
    casey67's Avatar
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    With 11 volts on the red/pur while cranking-the CDI should "wake up" and have 8-9 volts on the brown wire.
    Alot of these 3rd Gen CDI will not wake up with out switching power off/on. That is the reason for moving red/pur to the orange wires powered by the LR.

    Did you see any damage to the flywheel magnets when you had it off ?

    There is a theory the stator produces a A/C voltage when cranking on the purple wire. This is not a Polaris test, so we don't have a specification. I measured 5-6 volts A/C on the pur wire when cranking. (on an engine that would start).
    Check that. Possibility of another bad stator.

    It seems the engine isn't cranking fast enough/flywheel isn't spinning fast enough with all 3 spark plugs installed.
    Could you try a stronger battery ?

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by casey67 View Post
    With 11 volts on the red/pur while cranking-the CDI should "wake up" and have 8-9 volts on the brown wire.
    Alot of these 3rd Gen CDI will not wake up with out switching power off/on. That is the reason for moving red/pur to the orange wires powered by the LR.

    Did you see any damage to the flywheel magnets when you had it off ?

    There is a theory the stator produces a A/C voltage when cranking on the purple wire. This is not a Polaris test, so we don't have a specification. I measured 5-6 volts A/C on the pur wire when cranking. (on an engine that would start).
    Check that. Possibility of another bad stator.

    It seems the engine isn't cranking fast enough/flywheel isn't spinning fast enough with all 3 spark plugs installed.
    Could you try a stronger battery ?
    The flywheel looked good.

    On the first stator I had it read around 4 or 5 AC Volts with the same Fluke meter. I can check the newest one tonight.

    Last night I tried to re-measure the cranking voltage and the voltage was dropping to nothing. Ran a jumper wire from the block to the electrical box ground and it would crank. Cannot remember the cranking voltage but it was good and still no spark. Should I put back the black wire from the battery ground to the electrical box? I have read that some move it from the battery to the block. Or should I take out the stator and try to clean up the ground connection? I have already cleaned the ground wire from the battery to the engine block.

    I have another battery in the SL650 I could try but I know it is older. I should probably resolve the ground issue first.

  6. #6
    casey67's Avatar
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    If the supply voltage to the CDI "drops to nothing" the CDI will not work.
    Best to test the voltage with the meter at the CDI wires, including the ground for the CDI. It has to be near 11 volts for the CDI to work.
    If you have any question with that battery, change it. A $90 battery is much cheaper/easier than the ignition system.

    The ground at the stator needs to be clean for trouble free operation of the entire electrical system.

    The small ground wire going to the battery could create an alternative path for the starter through the stator wire-destroying the stator-best not to have it go to the battery.
    The stator ground wire is enough for the electrical box-if you are worried about it,a ground could be run to the block,but it is not neccesary.

  7. #7
    Before I started cleaning up the stator ground connection last night I made a few measurements.

    Purple 5V AC while cranking
    Yellow 6V AC while cranking
    Brown 8.5 V DC while cranking
    Red/Pur at CDI 10.8 V DC while cranking. This was after taking the previous 3 measurements and cranking for little while.

  8. #8
    So I sent the ignition kit back to SBT and they verified that it works in their test engine. I have it back and installed and I am having the same problem. Any ideas? Is it the coil?

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Msx150 Guy View Post
    SBT took the time to install a stator and Cdi on a test engine to verify it works? I find that hard to believe. It's a ton of work to swap a stator
    I know I have done it about 5 times now . They had it for about a week. I spoke with the tech on the phone that installed it. He said it had good spark for a Polaris, and they started it up and made a bunch of noise. But they did send me back my stator with a bad ground connection (black wire to stator frame high resistance). Is there anything else I can try?

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