2013 Yamaha FJR1300 - How To Access Battery
I guess Yamaha engineers efforts were so focused on making the bike awesome to ride and ultra reliable that they just had no time or energy left to make it serviceable. Case in point: The Battery and Fuses. The most complicated, time consuming, and tricky I've ever seen on any vehicle.
I recently decided I'd better do a run-through on this in my comfy, well-lit garage to get familiar with it before I some day need to on the side of a dark highway in the rain and cold (when it's most likely I will need to). Glad I did!
Please first read through the process in the OWNERS MANUAL or SERVICE MANUAL. The first time I tried it, I got only as far as trying to unsnap the instrument cowl and gave up out of fear for breaking something. But this is still very good info to know, particularly to note where the screws and clips are.
(both included in bike's took kit)
- 3 mm hex wrench / allen key
- Philips Screwdriver
- Small container to put screws and clips in (magnetic parts tray is great)
- 3 mm hex socket and screwdriver handle or 3mm hex driver
- Masking Tape
- Magnetic Phillips Screwdriver
Remove the 6 black hex screws from the left cover, instrument cowl, and right cover. These screws are easily lost so I suggest you get a couple extras (Yamaha Part: 90269-06008 "BOLT, HEX. SOCKET BUTTON"). You will not have to remove the left cover but it helps a lot for it to be loose.
Remove the 5 black push-pin-clips from left and right covers (3 on left, 2 on right). To remove these, use the short end of the hex key to push the centre bit IN (down) until it clicks. It goes in about 3 mm. This releases the clip. Use fingernail to grab outside edge of clip and pull it out. These little clips are likely easily lost or broken, so I recommend picking up a few extras from the dealer (Yamaha Part: 90269-06008 "Rivet")
Remove the two headlight adjuster knobs. NOTE: The Philips screws that hold them on are TINY and (experience talking here) the gravity path between them and the ground goes deep into parts of the engine area you will never see until the day you disassemble the engine. So DO NOT DROP THEM! I recommend using a screwdriver with a magnetic shaft (or you can magnetize your own by rubbing a strong magnet along the screwdriver several times). Someone on this forum said you don't have to remove the screws entirely. I could not get the knobs off until I had the screws all the way out. I suggest buying an extra 1 or 2 of these screws to keep on hand (Yamaha Part: 90269-06008 "SCREW, PAN HEAD").
Now the fun begins. Simply remove the instrument cowl. The manual shows where the snaps are (up the front outer sides, mostly). This is the scary part as the snaps are TOUGH to un-snap. I grabbed the bulbous part and wiggled and pulled it down and back until the snaps started coming un-done, starting at the top tip of the bulbous part working down toward the outside edge, one side at a time.. I advise against sticking anything in the crack to pry as you could easily either make marks around the edges or possibly break a snap fastener. Then you have to wiggle the bottom middle part out and eventually the whole thing comes off. I was terrified of breaking the snaps - you should be too! But they seem to be made quite strong and able to hold up to the power needed to un-do them.
I hope I described that good enough. I'd video it and put a clip here, but it would contain far too much profanity and slanderous commentary which could get me in trouble with Yamaha's lawyers.
There it is - the instrument cowl, or "front cowling" as the manual calls it.
Then remove the right cover. Removing the instrument cowl has revealed one last Phillips screw holding the right cover on at the very front tip. Remove the screw and then wiggle the right cover off, unsnapping it from the fairing.
This first time took me about 20 minutes. About 15 of that was wiggling and jiggling the instrument cowl, and stopping and pondering, as I tried to figure out how to remove it without breaking anything. Now that I've done it, I think it would take me as little as 5 minutes to do it next time - if in well lit area and have all the tools at hand.
Reverse procedure except to install the push-pin-fasteners, you have to push the centre pin OUT from behind until it sticks out/up from the fastener head about 3 - 5 mm. Then push the fastener completely into the hole and push the centre pin in just until it is flush with the fastener head.
What I did was install a fused accessory wire from the battery to under the seat. I used a good quality connector with battery terminal eyelet screw connectors on the battery end and an accessory plug with the positive pin insulated on the other end. (I actually just used the wires included with the Battery Tender
) I carefully routed it down the fairing and under the tank, attaching it securely along the way and wrapping with a bit of electrical tape at points where it runs across a sharp edge.
Before connecting to the battery, remove the NEGATIVE terminal first. Then if you are working on the positive and accidentally bump a metal part, you will not short it out. Remember: when working on batteries, remove the negative first, and connect the negative last.
Now I can remove the seat and simply plug in a DC socket, battery clips (to boost to/from another battery), trickle charger/battery tender, etc.
NOTE TO YAMAHA:
It would be real easy for you to make that right cover panel either removable by itself or make part of it openable / removable for easy access to battery; preferably without having to remove any screws or pieces that WILL get dropped and lost.
This would be a great safety feature that would reduce your legal laibility risk because in a crash of this bike there are many things that could short out and cause a fire. Quick access to battery terminals by emergency workers would help tremendously. And nobody is going to have a clue where this battery is, so a nice battery icon (or lightning bolt power icon or something) on that access panel would be fantastic. Maybe make that a sticker that the owner can choose to put on.
AND.. if you do make an improved part, PLEASE, PLEASE make it backwards compatible with the 2013 model so we can just buy the new part (you'll make some more money here) to replace the existing one.
Look at that! One simple fix and you will increase revenues, decrease legal liability risk, increase customer satisfaction (and dealer's too, I'm pretty sure), and thus increase profit. So, why wait? Get the engineers on this TODAY!!
Thanks for listening. And by the way, the bike is absolutely awesome despite this serviceability item.