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cdi conversion for 77

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by sweatybetty89, May 2, 2021.

  1. gggGary

    gggGary When a whole one is just too much. XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    Your labor is dirt cheap learning how to trouble shoot a points system is old school cool! What skull sez and most of it applies no matter which system you have or install. Headed out for a 2,000 mile trip Tuesday on a kick only 70, with points, usually an easy one kick vrrm vrrm.
  2. Team Junk

    Team Junk XS650 Guru XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    I don't know if that is a behavior that you would want people to know about. Rather daft in some peoples minds.

    Have fun.:)
    gggGary likes this.
  3. LanzSilva

    LanzSilva XS650 Addict

    You are absolutely right, but once you learn to adjust the points it is fun. I am relatively young and my friends are a bit younger and are always surprised to see this old point system.
    Machine, sweatybetty89 and gggGary like this.
  4. RustiePyles

    RustiePyles Semper Fortis XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    Since most new ignition systems start at about the $300 mark fixing the points would be the least amount of money. The stock points system is WAY more robust than most of the modern replacements. New systems are prone to total failure from things as simple as turning the key on then off without starting the bike. You can replace your breakers and condenser for less than $40.
  5. arcticXS

    arcticXS XS650 Guru Top Contributor

    Just out of curiosity, hoping some of us with decades of XS ownership and experience will chime in:
    If someone would like to do a budget upgrade to the ignition system, costing say 100 US, just for argument's sake:
    What makes most sense, getting better coils and keeping the points and mechanical advancer.
    Or keeping the stock coils, and fitting a cheap electronic ignition system.
    sweatybetty89 likes this.
  6. WideAWAKE

    WideAWAKE Single Fins and Twin Cylinders

    yes, points are pretty simple and quite reliable system that if it fails can still usually get you home or at least off the side of the highway.

    they seem mysterious to those who first encounter em but spend an hour or so working them and mystery solved.
    txxs and sweatybetty89 like this.
  7. GLJ

    GLJ Never go faster than your guardian angle can fly. Top Contributor

    Sorry Rusty have to take a little issue with your post.
    It is true the stock system is cheaper to repair and get running. In the long run electronic is cheaper. No parts to wear out like points/condensers. If you factor in time saved it's no contest.
    I've bought new Boyer's for $225. Added benefit with a Boyer is it also replaces the troublesome mechanical advance unit. Which can cost money to fix.
    Boyer's have been around for a lot of years. They have a good track record. Turning the key on and off will not hurt them. I'm not sure about leaving the key on for a long period of time without the engine running. I do know that you will burn up a coil on a points system if sets with the key ignition on and not running.
    If I bought a bike with no of the motor I would fix the points system to get it running in order to find out what I had for a motor.
    arcticXS and YamadudeXS650C like this.
  8. arcticXS

    arcticXS XS650 Guru Top Contributor

    On a bike that you have owned for a while, and are familiar with, that is not daft at all. Especially when the owner knows what he's doing, like Gary.
    I'd be more concerned to embark on a 2000 mile trip on something more "modern", but with expired warranty. Or worse, an EV.......
  9. Team Junk

    Team Junk XS650 Guru XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    Gonzo less then 80.00 to replace everything.
    nj1639 and LanzSilva like this.
  10. Team Junk

    Team Junk XS650 Guru XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    I was kidding.
    gggGary and GLJ like this.
  11. RustiePyles

    RustiePyles Semper Fortis XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    My comment was in response to his statement that he wanted to spend the least amount of money possible, $40 vs $245+ is no contest. And yes I know that not ALL electronic ignitions are prone to failure like that but some are. Yes there are more moving mechanical parts with a points system, but there are more heat sensitive electronics with an electronic ignition. And when one of them fails you replace a $245-300 ignition. When one of the mechanical parts in a points system fails you're out $20-30. FWIW I have zero issue with electronic ignition upgrades, I converted the 74motor in my chopper to stock TCI with a gonzo because it had no ignition or charging system when I got it. There are advantages and disadvantages to any ignition system available for XS650s.
    Team Junk, jetmechmarty and LanzSilva like this.
  12. jetmechmarty

    jetmechmarty What should I put here? XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    Dyna coils. Or Accel.
    arcticXS likes this.
  13. Jan_P

    Jan_P XS650 Junkie

    I have had massive problems with the mechanical advance ...In part because I many years did not know about the
    bushing to be lubricated . But also with the other things objects in there. Springs and so being worn
    Not retarding properly
    But I have a sneaking suspicion that it was better on middle and top end.
    Not certain but a feeling that it was more Wroaaaaa ...aaa ... giving gas ..
    As compared to the Boyer 2 different i have used there after
    I have even pondered to go back to points now when I Know more.
    Points can have its problems ..grounding and so.
    But I am with Mr Pyles on that I don't think one should take em off to quickly if not needed.
    If worn ... then it is another situation
    And if the alternative is a cheap unknown box .. I would most likely work on with the Points.
    I like stock --- but the advance unit is most likely the worst design on the
    bike I vaguely remember a proper bearing can be installed instead of the Bushing
  14. sweatybetty89

    sweatybetty89 XS650 Enthusiast

    Where do I find this. Asking out of curiosity
  15. sweatybetty89

    sweatybetty89 XS650 Enthusiast

    And what all does it replace?
  16. 650Skull

    650Skull SSSSSSSSSlither Top Contributor

    To much talk about ignitions........learn about what you have and need to do.........as the discussion seems to revolve around ignitions i posted this so you can do some research and get you ducks in a row......

    learn to continuity test
    Use the lowest Ohm setting. In the tutorial i didn't. The lower the setting the more sensitive it is to picking up resistance, (resistance is when the wiring or coupling restricts the flow of the current between point A and point B)........and go through the whole loom/harness and clean and/or repair all connections, both bullet connectors and couplings. These can be just a worn or old connector, broken wires or corrosion/oxidization around the connector
    Continuity test between all connections, where a wire goes through a switch, test up to the switch then the wire on the other side of the switch. When this is done then test the wire from each end through the switch. If there is resistance the switch need to be taken apart and cleaned.

    The condition of the bike when you got it it would be a given to dismantle all switches, inspect for broken wires and clean all contacts

    Remove all grounds/earth
    connections, clean the contact points on the frame and wiring. make sure there the earth/ground is tight when reinstalling








    Not going to post about any other ignition systems as there are so many and doing this will get your bike going

    Points related


  17. sweatybetty89

    sweatybetty89 XS650 Enthusiast

    Thanks man. Food for thought
  18. Jim

    Jim Beyond the edge is the unknown. Here be Dragons XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    My two cents.... Modern electronics gives you a no maintenance, reliable system. Basically install and forget. Same same with EFI.... install and forget. Still..... there's a part of me that's still in love with the old school. Over the years, I've lost count of the times I've limped home on one cylinder. It sucks, but one cylinder will get you home. If a condenser/coil/points/carb (pick one) goes south, the one cylinder dance will get you home. Modern tech is awesome... but when it dies, you're dead in the water. With old school you have one of each for each cylinder. Somehow over the years, the old school always managed to limp me home. There's a charm and satisfaction to that that's hard to explain. Anyone who's ever made it home with one set of points that cooked itself will understand.
  19. Team Junk

    Team Junk XS650 Guru XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    Jim likes this.
  20. 650Skull

    650Skull SSSSSSSSSlither Top Contributor

    You don't have a TCI model bike..................You have points ignition........need to use this link for the Gozo ignition for your bike.

    Your Rotor and stater dont have the magnet or pickup required for the TCI models, where the gonzo is a straight swap in for the factory TCI unit.

    On your bike the rotor has to have a magnet embedded into the rotor, Or you can buy a rewound TCI one from Jim with the magnet in it, ...........That is a cost..........

    well lets take a step back....................You need to test your rotor and stater and reg to see if they are working before implementing the Gonzo.......Back to checking the electrics

    Also you need to buy a picup and install it onto your Stater..........or you can buy a TCI model stater that has the TCI pickup on it........Another cost, also getting harder to find .

    Its not just a matter of buying a Gonzo box for $30.00, (or what ever they cost), and you have an ignition.
    Team Junk, Jim and gggGary like this.

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