High capacity and sealed Gel Cell batteries.

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Jul 24, 2006
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It looks like I'm going to be putting a new battery on the MK3, as the old one is goosed!

As I intend to use the starter on it (crossing of fingers), does anybody have any advice or opinions on make/ AH and how to get the highest output battery in the standard MK3 battery tray, without modifying it? And has anybody got any experience of using gel filled batteries in their Commando with any benefits? I understand that for their size, gel filled give a higher AH than lead acid.

One of the spares suppliers did once suggest putting an earlier battery tray on and putting a BMW type battery in, but I would rather not do this. I would like to leave the original tray on if possible. I have fitted one of the later Japanese starters though, as they got a good write up.
I have used the Odyssey PC545 (which needs to be stood on end in the original tray), and I am now using a Westco 12V14L-B that fits the normal way in the 850 MkIII battery tray.

And I would consider both types to be more than adequate even with the original starter (provided the rest of the system is too, (heavier leads, good solenoid etc.) these battery types can stand for months (provided there's no current drain) without the need to periodically trickle charge them.

These battery types being 'AGM' (absorbed glass mat) type rather than 'gel'. And there doesn't appear to be any need to fit a physically larger battery.

I'd never heard of these AGM batterys before. But I have just read up on them, and if the information is acurate that I have read, I am very impressed with the specification and advantages even over gel batterys.

I have put on upgraded cables (as well as the new Japanese starter motor), and so hope to have a starter that is reliable, when I don't fancy kick starting it. Also I've just fitted a new prestolite solenoid today.

How long has the battery been on your bike L.A.B?

Appreciate the advice.
The Odyssey PC545 I fitted to my MkIII over three years ago, although I 'borrowed' it to use on another bike, but it is still going strong and is in constant use, although at £90 a time (I've bought three Odysseys for various bikes) it does get a bit expensive!

The Westco I fitted on the Commando earlier this year and it would seem to have the same cranking output (in fact has a slightly higher CCA than the 545) although it is a 'cheaper' battery it spins the starter without any lugging at all, in fact the bike starts considerably easier with the electric starter than the kick starter!

How either battery would perform when using the Commando starter on a frosty morning after it had been standing in the street all night I must admit I don't know, but then how often is that likely to occur these days!
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