Thursday, August 07, 2008

Rain-Testing the New Ignition Coil and ICM

To go with the new ignition coil I'd recently installed on Brigitta, my 1987 R80 Beemer, I'd shopped around and found a direct replacement Ignition Control Module for the most up to date ICM sold by BMW that was supposed to be used with the new ignition coil. Why not get the BMW one? $139 vs $25, quite a difference. The source is, and Stan the owner had a good reputation in the Airhead community.

Here's the two ICMs side by side, pretty much the same form factor, the changes are internal. The main one being that the new one does not send power to the coil until the engine is cranked over to prevent overheating the coil. More info here if you're really curious: LINK

I'd also discovered a small leak at the drain plug for the bevel final drive, the slow leak had spread hypoid gear oil all over the rear wheel. I tightened up the drain plug a bit more, cleaned off the wheel and will monitor for more leakage. Yes, I did use a new crush washer when I did the fluid change last week.

After the kids were in for the evening, I readied to go for a short 12 mile ride to check out all the changes I'd made Well, as I suited up I discovered that I'd left my wallet at work when changing into my riding gear. Dang. Instead of a short 12 mile ride, it was more like 24 miles there and back to retrieve my wallet.

Why do I mention this? Because it rained on me on the way home. Of course, since I was on a test ride, I did not put the sidecases back on and that's where my rain gear is stored. Sigh, got wet on the way home, not too bad.....just that cold Colorado rain while riding at night. The silver lining is that it was also a good rain test for the new coil and it did great! Held idle just fine, no sputtering, no complaining.

I did notice some slight twitchy behavior on the part of the tachometer needle though around the 4000 rpm mark. I'll have to watch that, am pretty sure its tied to the new ICM, hopefully its just part of the "burning in" process for a new ICM. I'll be carrying the old one as a spare anyways.

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