I live in Ukiah, CA and it was around a 104 degrees the other day so I dicided to take my 10 year old son out for a ride through the redwoods to the coast to cool off.
About an hour into the ride and 3 miles from the nearest town, the bike sputtered a little and suddenly died. The starter turned over a few times when I tried to start it again. Eventually, all I got was a click. The symptoms were consistent with that of a dead battery. However, I had replaced the battery about six months ago. Fortunately, a good Samaritan named bob was kind enough provide jump. The bike fired right up when connected to his car. I turned the bike off and left it connected for about 10 minutes and we were on our way again. Just as I got into town (4 miles), the bike did the same thing. This time, I noticed the sputtering got worse as I gave it more throttle. Thinking that this might be because of the fuel pump drawing more juice, I up-shifted to lower the RPMs and that bought me an extra quarter mile before the bike died. I ended up pushing it about three blocks to a dirt bike repair shop. Dirt bike mechanic checked the battery voltage. He said it read over 14 volts. I didn't even get a click when I tried to start it then. He said he thought the problem might be in the charging system or the computer. In speaking with the mechanic, I discovered he didn't go to service school or have any formal training in bike repair.
Anyway, long story short, I had my wife come get us with the pickup. The next day, the bike started right up. I ran it for 10 minutes both at idle and rev. I am not a mechanic, but I have some experience with electronics. I am wondering if the problem has something to do with temperature. I have heard of similar problems with cracked microchips. They might work fine when they are cool, but as the temp goes up the crack expanse and it fails...only to work later after it has cooled down. I talked to me dad (retired electrician). He said the had a cracked coil in the alternator on his old R90 once that did the same thing.
Does anyone have any ideas? If so, what kind of a job is it to fix?
Sorry for the long story.