what would cause a 1983 honda cb550 to over charge its battery?
Realize you are talking to a guy with a Harley attitude. But if you promise to upgrade to a Harley when you become a man I'll tell you.
Pull the saddle on that disgusting ricer and you will see a red or orange box with cooling fins. That is the voltage regulator.
VR's do three things. They let the alternator-starter charge your battery and trickle off the charge when the battery is charged.
They short out, and let the alternator overcharge the battery in which case it boils out the tube and the battery goes bone dry. Not a good thing.
They open circuit, and nothing gets to the battery, so it drains on every start and never charges back up.
Either way you replace the VR and you are back on the road. Still I'd think about getting a Harley............
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