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Thread: POSTING: Starter Relay Mod: Futura w/ Ford Relay

  1. #1
    apriliaforum expert Motech's Avatar
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    Starter Relay Mod: Futura w/ Ford Relay

    Important Note: (added May 19, 2010)

    I had a problem with the cheap Chinese Airtex brand I originally installed. It stuck closed once and caused the starter to continue cranking after the engine started. I replaced it with a relay from the Ford dealer, Ford part number E9TZ-11450-B I highly recommend installing the Ford part in place of any cheap Asian part from the chain stores to avoid the problem I encountered.

    Also note this Ford unit has no "I" terminal, so installation will be even simpler.
    (Sorry, I do not know how to insert the photos into the text on this forum. If an administrator or mod wishes to do so, please feel free. I apologize for the clumsiness.)

    EDIT: Here is what I wanted it to look like:

    http://www.southbayriders.com/forums...ad.php?t=91996




    We all know aprilia starter relays are a very weak link on all their V990 bikes. Rated at 50 Amps, it is woefully inadequate for a starter that pulls over 200 Amps. The after-market offerings are not much better with 75 Amp ratings.

    I vowed when mine failed, I would upgrade to a heavy duty Ford unit that can withstand well over 500 AMPS on any given Sunday.

    Mine failed a couple days ago at 43K miles. It had been weak for awhile with a 3-volt drop causing only 7 to 8 volts to reach the starter with weak cranking. The contacts heated up enough to partially melt the rubber boot on the output lead.

    I decided to take pics after I had already removed the old relay and cut the leads. Sorry, but here's what I have:

    The empty cavity with relay removed:

    http://www.apriliaforum.com/forums/a...1&d=1266778758

    Good idea to start off with a good schematic, thanks to Carl McNamee for the Futura shop manual on PDF. From this, I learned the red lead at the relay is battery power from the ignition switch while the blue one is the relay ground coming through the sidestand and neutral safety switches.

    http://www.apriliaforum.com/forums/a...1&d=1266778758


    I used an after market Airtex brand Ford starter relay, part number 1M1090, any brand will do. I pulled this number for a 1988 F-150 5.0 liter application, but any relay from a Ford vehicle from the sixties all the way up to the nineties will work. The two small terminals are marked "S" and "I" on the ford relay. The "S" is the start input signal from ignition switch where our red lead of the old relay harness will attach, the "I" is an ignition output we will not use.

    This relay cost me USD $12.00 wholesale, retails around twenty bucks.

    http://www.apriliaforum.com/forums/a...1&d=1266778758


    Here's the old relay after I already cut off the harness connector and began attaching connectors. Cut it off close to the relay for maximum length to work with, then throw that piece of shit in the rubbish can where it belongs.

    http://www.apriliaforum.com/forums/a...1&d=1266778758


    Here is the old next to the new. Big difference.

    http://www.apriliaforum.com/forums/a...1&d=1266778758


    Here is the wire prep, a small 4 or 5 mm heatshrink eyelet on the red lead to attach to the "S" terminal of the new relay, and a larger 6mm plain eyelet soldered to the blue lead for the sidestand/neutral safety switch ground circuit.

    http://www.apriliaforum.com/forums/a...1&d=1266778758


    The Ford relay must receive a ground signal to work, just like the aprilia relay. Difference is, the metal relay base must be grounded. Here I have attached the red lead to the "S" terminal, and bolted the blue lead to the relay base using a short 6mm bolt and locknut. By wiring it this way, the safety switch features on the bike are still 100% retained. Were the base simply grounded to battery negative, all safety functions would be bypassed. Don't want that.

    http://www.apriliaforum.com/forums/a...1&d=1266778758


    The factory aprilia battery positive and starter leads have 6mm eyelets on them, and our new relay has beefier 8mm terminals. A simple reamer takes care of that issue.


    http://www.apriliaforum.com/forums/a...1&d=1266778758

    This is the final installation. With the "S" terminal at 9:00 o-clock from this view, the battery positive is attached at 12:00 terminal, while the starter lead is at 6:00. The modified relay harness plugs directly into the factory wiring harness.

    http://www.apriliaforum.com/forums/a...1&d=1266778758


    When I thumbed the starter, it spun so fast that the bike fired up before I could listen to the new cadence! I put it in clear-flood mode by opening the throttle wide and cranking for ten seconds. It did not skip a beat, cranked fast and glorious, has never cranked this beautifully in over 25,000 miles I've owned it, and the new relay has a deliberate and authoritative "thunk" when engaged that is music to my ears.

    Oh yeah, time to sit back and relish a mod well done.

    http://www.apriliaforum.com/forums/a...1&d=1266778758


    This mod will work exactly as described for any motorbike that utilizes both power and ground triggers to activate it. Caution must be used when mounting it though. Futura gives me the luxury of a lot of space above the battery with all plastic, no metal frame for the relay to contact. If your different bike has metal nearby, care must be taken to not allow the relay base to contact any metal part of the bike as this could provide an unwanted ground to the relay that will allow it to bypass all the safety switches and crank over anytime.

    DO NOT MOUNT THE FORD RELAY TO ANYTHING METAL!

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    Last edited by Motech; 03-04-2012 at 04:06 PM.
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  2. #2
    apriliaforum expert SpitfireTriple's Avatar
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    Allow me to muck about with BB/html (I'm trying to expand my knowledge)


    nope, not getting anywhere. Not yet, anyway.
    Last edited by SpitfireTriple; 02-21-2010 at 03:34 PM.

  3. #3
    apriliaforum expert deefred's Avatar
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    Do you know the coil resistance for the two starter relays?
    You may but a higher stress on the starter button if the new relay has a lower resistance.
    2001 RST Futura in stream Silver.
    Mods: Modified Öhlins fork from mille R, EBC brake discs, HEL front brakelines, Carbon RS 250 front fender, Wiring mod for charging. Engine related:05 map, Iridium plugs, tuneboy, derestriced intake, old mille airboot, staintunes exhaust. Lambda bung hardbrazed in the "breadbox". Öhlins mille R rear shock with 110N/mm spring and the integrated hydraulic preload adjuster. LED Voltmeter installed inside the dash for monitoring charging. Duc 999 radial m/c for brake and clutch. EBC 320mm brake discs
    NWS hugger. Equipment: Famsa tankbag,
    CBR 600 -07 MOSFET R&R FH008EE providing stable 14.4 - 14.5 V (with my wiring mod). Daytona heated grips with mccoi pwm controller and automatic chain oiler

  4. #4
    apriliaforum expert Motech's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SpitfireTriple View Post
    Allow me to muck about with BB/html (I'm trying to expand my knowledge)
    Thanks Mate.

    I posted it up on another, more user-friendly forum. This is what I wanted it to look like here:

    http://www.southbayriders.com/forums...ad.php?t=91996


    Quote Originally Posted by deefred View Post
    Do you know the coil resistance for the two starter relays?
    You may but a higher stress on the starter button if the new relay has a lower resistance.
    Have no clue, and measuring the old one would be futile anyway. If using a genuine Ford part though, I would be willing to guarantee this mod for life if I installed it professionally for a customer.

    I suppose I could measure the switch current draw and post it up later for you.

    Last edited by Motech; 02-21-2010 at 04:08 PM.
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  5. #5
    apriliaforum expert SpitfireTriple's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Motech View Post
    Thanks Mate.

    I posted it up on another, more user-friendly forum. This is what I wanted it to look like here:

    http://www.southbayriders.com/forums...ad.php?t=91996
    Hmm, my first efforts have failed. Moving the photos isn't too difficult:

    Choose a pic. Right click on it. Select Copy Image Location. Now left click with the cursor where you want the pics to be - perhaps between two paragraphs. Left click the little picture symbol - it has two pyramids and a stamp - or is it the sun? You'll see a field where some code is already highlighted. Right click on the code. Then select Paste. Click Okay. That's it, you are done! You might now want to remove the old picture from its unwanted location.

    Whilst it was relatively easy to move the photos, I wanted to shrink them too. I tried inserting into the [img] prefix the BB code ...=800x600. Which should have given [img=800x600]blahblahblah[/img] ie a shrunken image, but it didn't work.

    I could do it the long way, by importing it into picasa, changing it there, then re-exporting. But I'd rather do it the right, quick way. Can any BB experts throw light on this? But perhaps this is not the right thread for a discussion of BB code.

    Edit, now I've tried inserting ?imgmax=800 at the end of the image url but that doesn't seem to work either. Hmm. I had none of this trouble when I was resizing uploaded photos on tour, I just change whatever size was already indicated to what I wanted..
    Last edited by SpitfireTriple; 02-21-2010 at 04:24 PM.

  6. #6
    apriliaforum expert deefred's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Motech View Post
    Thanks Mate.

    I posted it up on another, more user-friendly forum. This is what I wanted it to look like here:

    http://www.southbayriders.com/forums...ad.php?t=91996


    Have no clue, and measuring the old one would be futile anyway. If using a genuine Ford part though, I would be willing to guarantee this mod for life if I installed it professionally for a customer.

    I suppose I could measure the switch current draw and post it up later for you.

    Just measure the resistance over the actuation coil for the Ford relay and then we know the value at least.
    You could probably do the same for the old relay measuring over the soldered posts.
    There is a risk that the coil is now damaged, but the measured value would tell you.
    2001 RST Futura in stream Silver.
    Mods: Modified Öhlins fork from mille R, EBC brake discs, HEL front brakelines, Carbon RS 250 front fender, Wiring mod for charging. Engine related:05 map, Iridium plugs, tuneboy, derestriced intake, old mille airboot, staintunes exhaust. Lambda bung hardbrazed in the "breadbox". Öhlins mille R rear shock with 110N/mm spring and the integrated hydraulic preload adjuster. LED Voltmeter installed inside the dash for monitoring charging. Duc 999 radial m/c for brake and clutch. EBC 320mm brake discs
    NWS hugger. Equipment: Famsa tankbag,
    CBR 600 -07 MOSFET R&R FH008EE providing stable 14.4 - 14.5 V (with my wiring mod). Daytona heated grips with mccoi pwm controller and automatic chain oiler

  7. #7
    apriliaforum Junkie Kyytsö's Avatar
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    Good write-up. Thanks!

    Consider to post the pictures to Imageshack or some other picture hosting service. Then it is easy to use the IMG tags to attach them to the post to correct positions.

  8. #8
    apriliaforum expert SpitfireTriple's Avatar
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    There you go Motech. Time for you to join the 21st century!

    Some people use photobucket, but I've seen far too many broken links. Flickr is apparently good if you want to make a social life around photos (I'd raise an eyebrow, but I live in a glass house), I find Picasa Web pretty good. And it's free.

  9. #9
    apriliaforum expert kzmille's Avatar
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    That's a good repair Motech though you might have gone a bit overboard with your choice of relay. Though some might cringe at the use of an automotive part there is a great lesson here especially for those who travel far from home. You can find a starter relay almost anywhere that can be easily connected in an emergency that will get you home. Any auto parts store, lawn mower repair shop, or tractor supply will have a starter relay that will get you going.

  10. #10
    apriliaforum expert RAS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kzmille View Post
    That's a good repair Motech though you might have gone a bit overboard with your choice of relay. Though some might cringe at the use of an automotive part there is a great lesson here especially for those who travel far from home. You can find a starter relay almost anywhere that can be easily connected in an emergency that will get you home. Any auto parts store, lawn mower repair shop, or tractor supply will have a starter relay that will get you going.
    And as many of us have discovered, a boat shop in Florida as well.

  11. #11
    apriliaforum Junkie Kyytsö's Avatar
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    The one thing I want to remember from all this is that I can easily by-pass the sidestand and neutral safety switches from the relay.

  12. #12
    apriliaforum expert RAS's Avatar
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    If you are thinking of bypassing that side stand switch, it's a heck of a lot easier to do in light at home than in the dark alongside the road somewheres.

    I think my brain is a little more careful now that mine is bypassed. I've not put it in gear once with the stand down since.

  13. #13
    apriliaforum Junkie Kyytsö's Avatar
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    Sure it is, but my bikes never break when I'm at the garage with tools. They usually do it at night time, when it is raining and no-one around. Except for the few living dead wondering around hungry for some fresh brains...

  14. #14
    apriliaforum expert Fox Fader's Avatar
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    I'll say it again. I just went to a bike shop and got a universal 100 amp relay; plug and play.
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  15. #15
    apriliaforum expert woodman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fox Fader View Post
    I'll say it again. I just went to a bike shop and got a universal 100 amp relay; plug and play.
    What brand? Part #? How much?
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