October, 2005




20th Anniversary Cavalcade Rally “CADE RAID 2006


September 11-15, 2006 ~ Golden, Colorado


Many of our Cavalcades officially turn 20 years old this year. To celebrate we are hosting a gathering of Cades and Cade owners in the Rocky Mountain resort town of Golden , Colorado . We have a full schedule of events all week. There will be workshop classes by the best Cavalcade mechanics in the world. Learn to repair, maintain and enhance your Cavalcade from these experts. We’ll feature daily rides through the majestic Rocky Mountains . We will have an Advanced Rider Training Course to improve our skills riding heavy motorcycles. We’ve scheduled evening meals and entertainment, highlighted by our Friday Night Cade Raid Dinner with our own Cavalcade Prime-Time Entertainers, including Jay, Tracy, Nancy “Motherwind” and others.


Email for a registration form to attend Cade Raid 2006. Reserve the week of September 11-15, 2006 at the Holiday Inn in Golden, Colorado . If you call for reservations, be sure to identify yourself as with the Suzuki Cavalcade Owners attending “Cade Raid 2006” to receive our special room rate of $70.



We are in the planning stage for a weekend Cade Raid next Spring somewhere in British Columbia , Canada . If you would like to attend, please contact with your suggestions for dates and locations. 


If you are planning a ride, rally, or other motorcycle event

of interest to the membership of the Suzuki Cavalcade Owners Group, send the information to and it will be posted in the next issue of this newsletter.





It was that informed me of the secondary drive issue, how common was that failure anyway? Nice tip on the database, thanks. ~James
Too common, way too common James.  I have 380 bikes in the database, of which I have at least some failure data on 171.  Of those 171 bikes, 61 reported either a secondary plug failure or a seal failure or both, that's over a third. 

I broke them out into the four production runs, and found that the secondary seal failure rate didn't change all that much (considering that the last run has only three bikes on which I have failure data, not enough to draw any conclusions.)  This came as no surprise, since they didn't change the design of the seals.  I think
Tracy mentioned they were a different color on the later models.  Materials change? 

The interesting trend is in the failure rate of the plug:  First run, 54% failed.  Second run, 24% failed.  Third run, 17% failed.  Fourth run, 0. If any conclusion can be drawn from that, it is that the plug redesign between the first and second runs probably helped, but didn't completely solve the problem. You also know what can happen if you do nothing, right?  Total failure of the secondary gear case bearings, suddenly locked rear wheel, certainly a serious Failure To Proceed, and most likely the dreaded Truly Bad Consequences.

My contention then is this: if you have a first run bike, (last four digits of your VIN is less than 3764 for the G models) then you know what has to happen and who to see for the parts (
Tracy ).  If you have a later model, second, third or fourth run, then it is up to your judgment, but in the meantime do check dem you-know-what’s, and you-know-how-many of dem, check dem early and often, and please don't make me hafta read about you here.  Check em.

I have a second and a third production run, decided to Tracy-plug both.  My first production run Cade I plugged with the original equipment plug and green Loctite, but I now suspect that the heat in the secondary case has dissolved the Loctite, so that job will need to be redone.  It's a pain to get that secondary case off of there, so if you do go to the effort, go ahead and spring for the Tracy plug and change out the seals while you are in there, take your time, do it carefully and do it right. 

If you are not sure of yourself, get a buddy to help.  If you are not sure of your buddy, get a professional mechanic.  This is one job that must be done just right, it's unforgiving.  Even after you do the job, check dem oil levels anyway. ~spike



Under the left side cover there is what looks like a prescription bottle with a tube running into it.  Can anyone tell me what this is and the function? ~Stosch


Tracy can attest to this I CONFESS ~ When I was having my secondary problems WAY Back when, I came up with the bright Idea of QUICK CHECK Of the ENGINE OIL IN GEARBOX, so I made up a couple of little catch tubes and attached it to the OVERFLOW OR breather tube as it's best known and when the OIL WAS FORCED OUT of the gear box into this tube I knew it was time to CHANGE the secondary GEAR oil as it was contaminated with ENGINE oil. THIS HAPPENS when the gear box OVERFILLS and FORCES the contaminated oil into the container.

PERSONS with these CATCH Bottles should think about replacing the engine to gear box seal as this is the cause, AIR over the tube or whatever will NOT cause the gear oil to come out of the gear box as
there is a shield built into the gear box to prevent this. It's plain that your gear box is OVERFILLING from the transfer or YOU just put toooo much gear oil in it to start with. I did this ONLY as an experiment mentioned it on the website and maybe someone mistook it as a fix but to do this is simply prolonging the proper repair and as we all know engine oil IS NOT a good replacement for gear OIL>>> as I stated before while I was experimenting with this idea when this container started filling with oil I KNEW my gear oil was contaminated and IMMEDIATELY changed it by draining it completely dry and REFILLING it with the proper grade gear oil.

If there are any questions please contact me personally. These catch bottles were ONLY used for a reference, not as a fix to stay out of DIVORCE court, and IF it's NOT FIXED properly you may have an
appointment with the undertaker. When where and who from, did you purchase the bikes with these


 I am glad to be a part of this group.  Yes, I am a newbie, just joined. Been lurking in the group for about 4 months. Knew I wanted to buy a Cade, just wanted to learn more about them first.  You guys are great.  I love being part of the "unusual, unique" Cade group.  Finally found one and bought it last weekend.  A pristine, 1987 LXE “limited edition", 62K miles.  So now I've joined the group. Rained 4 of 7 days, still put 500 miles on.  It sure is a nice bike.  It is absolutely a great riding bike and I love being part of the group.

 Looks like I have lots to learn from all of you.  My first question is; what does the "limited edition" mean?  How many of you have them? I registered my bike with Spike; he says right now I have the oldest 1987 "known to man".  So it appears this is one of the first 1987's to roll off the production line.  I'm just looking for a little education. The guy I bought it from says the limited edition is  the following:
 - 6 front fork orange running lamps
 - chrome front disc brake covers
 - matching front and rear "cavalcade" insignia mud flaps
 - more chrome body strips/striping
 - security theft deterrent red flashing light
 - more emblems, decals and chrome
 - rear cargo "relay/sequential" flashing brake light
 - CB radio system (although this is not part of the radio system, so I doubt it is part of the limited edition)
 - voltmeter (generator/regulator/battery charge output lighted gauge)
 - heel/toe gear shift lever
 - five separate lighted toggle switches with 1 amp fuses
 - head lamp override on/off switch
 - 2 rear lighted candle/Popsicle lights
 - electric radiator fan override switch
 - compressor override switch
 - lighted 4 side red/yellow reflectors and rear red lens over license plate
 - two tone seats
 - drivers backrest with carry bag
 - 3 Cavalcade carry on luggage bags
 Don't know if any or all of this is true – but the  bike does have this  stuff and is marked "Limited Edition" in several locations.  I see other bikes on eBay with some of this - were they just options for all Cade, but they put on the "limited edition" version?  I feel lucky to have one, just not sure how lucky.  What is your opinion?  ~ Stu Brown,
Wausau , WI , 1987 LXE "Limited Edition” 62K

 Stu, It sound's like you have one awesome Cavalcade. I'd love to see it and sure hope you can make it to our Cavalcade rally next year in
Colorado , CADE RAID 2006. We will be celebrating the 20th anniversary for most of the Cavalcades, but I guess only the 19th for yours.
 Limited Edition? It may be an edition limited to 'one.' I suspect a former owner may have dressed up the LXE and borrowed the Limited Edition logos from a Gold Wing Interstate LE. The items you listed are all Suzuki options or aftermarket goodies that were available for Cavalcades back in the '80s. I may be wrong (frequently am) but I don't think Suzuki produced such an animal. Welcome to the family of Cavalcade owners. ~Jay


-on the subject or rare cades back in 86 an old friend of mine bought his maroon and silver 87 from the Toronto bike show. It was the last day of the show and he convinced Suzuki to sell it to him. It had no engine serial # no frame # motor sound different than my 86 and sat 3-4 inches lower than mine. I haven’t talked to him since 98 and don't know if he still has it or not. I had to take it to the dealership when we got it home and they put #'s on both motor and frame with an engraving punch. It was a Canadian bike (kilometers). two tone seat black and gray. ~Tim


Chroming THE Side Covers

Has anybody had any experience with chroming the stator and clutch covers? Mine are scratched up and I was thinking about doing this if the cost isn't too much. Does the oil level site glass pop out or can they cover that with something when chroming? ~Kirby, 86 LX, Topeka , Ks.

Kirby, I had my covers re-chromed in 2001 by a company called Paul's Chrome Plating in the Pittsburgh , PA area (found them in Hemming's Motor News).  And they still look as good as they did when I got them back.  The sight glass stayed in the clutch cover throughout the entire process.  They did tape over it, just in case.  Originally, they thought they would just remove it, but I was worried about either breakage or having a problem getting it to seal up again.  So I called my Suzuki dealer & they informed me that the sight glass was not avail alone - it was part of the clutch cover.  Paul's said the worst that could happen is the window might get a little etched during the process, especially if it was not actual glass.  But it came through crystal clear and never leaked a drop.  They charged me around $325 for the stator, secondary & clutch covers (although, afterwards, he said he bid a little low since the clutch cover was much larger than he thought it would be).  ~Mark & Nibbler, '86 Grey-on-Grey GT in OH



OK guys, Here’s the scoop on the starting system.  On the negative side of the solenoid is the clutch switch, normally open until you pull in the clutch, then it closes the circuit. On the positive side of the starter solenoid is the run/off switch, the start button, and the side stand relay (not on early run 86's).  With this setup, the bike will not start without the clutch switch being closed. But it will not start if the side stand is down and it’s not in neutral, 1 or the other can happen, but not both. So it can start with the clutch in, the side stand down and in neutral, or clutch in, side stand up, and in gear. But it will not start if side stand is down and it’s not in neutral. I hope this clears things up. ~Brian in IN

I have found the product that takes care of those frozen bolts, screws, etc. Wish I had used it when I had to pull everything off and replace my stator. Pal Oil makes a product called Marine Pal that is a penetrant and lubricant and a product called Lugbuster that is a penetrant. They claim the Lugbuster penetrates even better than the Marine Pal, if it does then it is REALLY good.

I used Kroil for years and thought it was as good as you could get until I tried the Marine Pal. It puts Kroil to shame. A couple of drops and a couple of minutes and most anything will come loose. No drenching, no overnight soaking, just put a little on and it works. I have nothing to do with the company other than being a satisfied customer. You can check them out and order their products at

When I change the oil in my Cade, I will be adding their Desert Pal to the oil. In my F150, I got about 20% better mileage and the heat hand dropped noticeably. I hope it can help the Cade run cooler in traffic and extra gas mileage certainly doesn't hurt these days. I will let you know how it works once I put it in. ~Hitekrednek

Good luck with this project. I just had to change mine.  The problem is that it is much harder to get it off than to put the new one on.  I do not know of anything else that will fit.  There will be a lot of stuck
hardware to remove.  Aside from the cost of the part-called a pre-muffler- I suggest you also order the following parts, which will also be broken from age and wear, etc.

Get the four bolts that hold the pipes in the front of engine. For the flanges get all 6 of the muffler couplings- 4 are one size and two are larger (muffler) The 4 screws which hold the bracket clamp from the front pipes. The two front flanges which hold the front pipes into engine. My bolts were seized in these. Two gaskets are in the front pipes to the engine. A tube of anti-seize for reassembly. New pipe clamps come with the new pre-muffler. I had a major problem removing the frozen bolts after all these years. I had to remove the swing arm as the bolt for the left rear pipe clamp was too close to the auxiliary fuel tank to get a wrench on it.  I cleaned all the pipes and stuff on the wire wheel and used anti-seize on everything.  I will never again 'dangle' the mufflers, as described in the procedure for tire change.  I will fully remove from now on.

Rest assured-your vocabulary will increase by some words that you didn't know you knew. (Get the idea here?) However when the two months of working on it in your garage in your spare time are over, and you have now recharged the battery again, you finally hit the start button and it once again sounds like that nice cavalcade we all love,  IT WILL BE WORTH IT!

Is there a way to check the auto level switch? I do not get a light on the switch, nor do I get any action from the pump when I try to hot wire it. Are there any tests I can do on the auto level switch, sensor, and circuit? ~Scott, 86 LXE,


 There are some circuits that have to be closed/open for the auto level to work. For instance neither the side stand nor the center stand can be in the down position. Also the gear must be in neutral. The motorcycle must also be running. With all of the above, when you press the switch, what do you get?  If it lights up momentarily, the motorcycle may already be level. But it may mean the ignition switch is messed up a little and will not allow all of that to work. Simply grab the wires from the bottom of the ignition switch and push them up. Try it again and see if there is a difference. There is also a test procedure in the manual, but it does require a special tester that most of us don't have.  You may also want to check the auto level switch itself by the rear wheel. I found mine completely disengaged one time, from a pot hole way too deep.  ~Tom (1986 LXE in Alabama )


I pulled into my garage last night and the gasoline smell was BAD. Looked at the carbs and sure enough there was gasoline dripping. Not sure exactly where it was from but sounds like I need the DVD. Is the rebuild a job that a half-way do-it-yourselfer can do? Or should I just take all the carbs off and send them to Tracy ? How much $$$ and how much time to rebuild them? ~Jim, Madison , WV , ‘86 Brown/tan

Jim; A few weeks ago, I had the same experience with my 86. Found that the gas was coming from the overflow tube from the nearest front carb on the right side. I removed the carbs as a unit, bought four cans of carb cleaner from Wal-Mart, sprayed the crap out of everything on the carbs, every orifice, and then used air and sprayed the unit well. Replace the unit and everything was fine. Must have been a piece of dirt stuck somewhere. I was probably lucky, but it worked for me. ~ Gary




What would people suggest for "disappearing" clutch? For some reason when I get around 70mph for more than 30 min...the clutch pressure goes away. After the bike "cools" a while the pressure returns. I recently drained the fluid from the cylinder down to the casing and replaced with new but it didn't seem to change the situation.


Change the brake fluid in the system. It has water in it that turns to steam (air) when it gets hot. You need to change the brake side also if they have not been done in last two years. ~Gandalf


I’m new here and just to add a little info on clutch fluid saga. What happens is that condensation builds up over time with the Non-Synthetic Fluid. This condensation settles into the Slave cylinder. On hot days in heavy traffic, the condensation vaporizes from the heat and leaves a void in the hydraulic system causing the hydraulic system to fail.  So when you squeeze the lever nothing happens (its basically limp); it does not apply pressure to the slave cylinder. So, if you were to shut off the engine and put it in gear and restart, it would move. Simple solution - you need to change to a good DOT4 synthetic brake fluid.  Personally I use Valvoline for clutch & brake and never had the issue again. ~Leigh


I will add a little to what Leigh has stated. Synthetic or not, all brake fluid has a dry and wet boiling point. The dry point is about that when the fluid is first put into the system from a new closed container. However, due to permeation through rubber, water molecules work their way into the system over time until equilibrium is reached between inside and out of the system. That equilibrium is the point at which the brake fluid is fully saturated (with as much moisture as it will absorb) or wet.


The temperature difference between the dry and wet boiling points is a lot and the synthetic generally has a higher wet boiling point (the one we're most concerned with) than non-synthetic. Can you boil synthetic brake fluid? You bet. I just did it a few weeks ago. But, it was a little of an experiment as I hadn't changed the brake fluid in the clutch system for 3 years and it finally absorbed enough moisture to boil.


So, use DOT 4 at a minimum. Use the highest boiling point DOT 4 you can get. And, change it every year or 2 but don't let it go much longer than that. Some will chose to go with the DOT 5 silicone fluid, if you do that the system needs to be pretty squeaky clean before you put it in because it's not compatible with other fluids. Some may chose to go with the DOT 5.1 but I don't have enough knowledge of that fluid to know what it's compatibility's or additional heat tolerance over DOT 4. ~ Tracy






The previously obsolete rear wheel bearing/spacers are now in process of being produced again by Suzuki. I have 50 ea. coming to me and they are going to make 10 additional ones that Suzuki will put into stock. I will package the spacer with a new needle bearing and a new seal. The cost of this kit will be less than $50 (I don't have a cost on the seal at this moment but the new bearing and spacer will be $40). There will also be a tool that is shipped out for removing the needle bearing that will have to be returned to me. I only have one at the moment but if the demand is high I will make more as needed.


As I had previously ranted, this spacer needs to be checked whenever the rear wheel is removed. The early versions (and I don't know when they changed) will show an obvious wear scar on the spacer indicating the need for replacement. Thanks to Jim Kirkland with Suzuki for helping me with this project. ~ Tracy



Okay, last time I gave a recommendation for a car stat as a replacement for the $40+ Suzuki version it didn't fly so well. But, this time I can promise better results. The NAPA 201 thermostat that I just bought for $5.99 drops right into the Cade with no modifications to the stat housing and only one mod to the stat itself. It has an offset pill to clear the bumps in the housing and all you need to do is cut the end off the little brass valve so that it leaves an 1/8" hole in the face of the stat as a bypass. Now, is every NAPA #201 stat the same? I dunno. But it sure beats the hell out of spending so much $ for an OEM one. ~ Tracy



Once again help!!!  The clutch system on my Cade keeps building up pressure causing the clutch to slip. If I crack open the banjo bolt or the bleed port a little fluid comes out and then the clutch works ok.  I’ve taken apart the master cylinder and cleaned it up making sure that both holes in the bottom are open.  Does any one have an idea what may be wrong? ~Wayne Lee, ’86 LXE, blue on blue


Wayne , Here's how it all works and maybe that will lead to you an answer to your problem. In the master cylinder there is nothing more than a piston with a rubber seal on it that is spring loaded to the retracted (lever out) position. In the slave cylinder, there is nothing more than a piston with a seal on it that is spring loaded to the forward (towards the clutch) position. When the lever is out, the rubber seal in the master cylinder sits behind 2 holes in the bottom of the master cylinder (the holes both being ahead of the rubber seal). In that position, the larger hole allows fluid to completely fill the area ahead of the piston. That's what keeps fluid in there so that when you pull the lever there is a solid column of fluid so that the slave cylinder reacts in perfect synch with the master cylinder notwithstanding that the slave cylinder is larger in diameter which does nothing more than provide pressure multiplication (the smaller master cylinder piston can push more force since the slave cylinder is larger). They can get away with this since the slave cylinder piston doesn't have to move as far as the master cylinder piston to fully release the clutch.

The small hole in the master cylinder serves a couple of purposes. When you pull the lever in, a small amount of fluid will burp out of the small hole because there is a little distance between the front edge of the seal and that hole. This allows any air that is trapped in front of the seal to purge. Also, if there is air anywhere else in the system (past the master cylinder), the small hole is the first escape route and air will
automatically be purged out as it reaches the hole (lever out).

Now comes the part that may help. When the piston is fully retracted (lever out), both of those holes must be in front of the piston and be clean (open). The big hole isn't usually a problem but the small one can be as it is very small and really old brake fluid can crust up in it and block it. So, any problem with the brake lever that might prevent it from returning to it fully outward position (like a badly adjusted stock safety switch or a really worn out bushing or something), will not allow the fluid ahead of the piston to purge back into the master cylinder reservoir so that needs to be checked. Also, if there is something that is preventing the piston from fully retracting till it hits the retainer clip then that will cause a problem. There is a rubber dust boot on the piston and maybe it's gotten itself down into the piston hole and is keeping the piston from fully retracting.

And, each time you operate the clutch, the rubber boot under the lid must move to accommodate the fluid going out of and back into the reservoir. Since it's a positive displacement system and is sealed to outside air, the boot allows the volume of the reservoir to be variable. As the clutch wears, the fluid level will actually rise and the boot has to accommodate that also. Because the boot has to move in and out, the back side of it (the top side) must have free access to outside air. If it didn't, then each time to operated the clutch there would be a vacuum on the backside (lever going in) and then a pressure buildup on the backside (lever going back out). As the fluid in the system heats up (slave gets really HOT), then the boot must accommodate the expansion of the fluid by moving upwards. So, if the vent hole in the cap is plugged, there will be a pressure on the backside of the boot that will eventually continue to force fluid into the system and can put enough pressure on the slave to partially release the clutch (remember,
there is a substantial mechanical advantage of pressure in the master cylinder to pressure in the slave on the order of about 4 times). It doesn't take a lot of pressure in the system to partially disengage the clutch. So the vent in the cap must be clean. If you remove the little bent piece of metal that is on the bottom side of the lid, you will see the vent channel and the rather small hole that make a 90° angle at one corner of the cap.

I've seen several of those where brake fluid has gotten dried and crusty in the hole and was preventing backside venting of the boot. So, if none of this helps, I dunno what you've got going on. ~



I am replacing clutch springs got Barnett springs, what should I know or look for? ~Don


Take out one at a time, put new in one at a time. Don't use any sort of powered tool to do it. 1/4" ratchet and 10 mm socket with extension. Just snug the bolts good, don't try to twist them off. Cheap bolts and fragile threaded stems in clutch basket don't take a lot of abuse. ~ Tracy


The clutch on my '88 has been slipping so I replaced the springs. I also made sure the reservoir vent was clear and that the hydraulics were working fine. Still slipping. I came to the realization that I'm not getting any engagement until my clutch lever is *almost* to its very outward point of travel so I will assume that
the problem is worn clutch plates. Is there anything else that might be causing this? There looks to be quite a bit of disengagement clearance so, assuming there would be sufficient room to still allow engagement and full disengagement, what might be the possibility of adding one drive and driven plate to the stack rather than spending the $200 it will cost to replace the whole set?  I didn't actually put a caliper on the gap, just eyeballed at this point.  I realize that heat expansion could cause clutch drag if the tolerance is too tight.  Hoping somebody might have some experience with this. ~Craig

P.S. Tracy - my radio works great!  Fantastic job on the switches.  Thanks!


I had a similar problem and found that the housing that contains the choke lever/radio controls had slipped when I was moving the choke lever back to normal position. I assume that I had the clutch pulled in at the time.  There is a cable guide on the back of the housing that will, if put in the right (or should I say wrong) position that will prevent the clutch lever from coming out the full travel and produce a clutch slip.  The fix is simple enough; just turn the choke housing to its proper position and tighten it up to prevent further problems. Hope this is you problem. ~Randy H.


Worn plates will not cause the clutch lever to act that way. Since it's hydraulic, the lever doesn't care where the plates are as it self adjusts each time you use the clutch. Measure your plates FIRST. If they're still in spec, then you probably have a master cylinder problem. If they are out of spec, I can get you a full set of friction plates for less than $90. Don't be messing around trying to fit another plate in there as you will have to put another steel and friction plate and that will be too much thickness. Plus, if your plates are worn that bad then there won't be any oil grooves left in them. ~ Tracy



I've got a 1986 1400 Cade with only 56,000 miles on it. It has had the best of care for its entire life and now I am faced with a potential final drive failure. Is there a history on this? If so, can you give me some info on it? ~Don


Don, Final drive problems are rare and are not dependent on what kind of care the bike has had. Firstly, it may not even be a final drive failure. There are 2 wheel bearings, separate from the final drive, and one of those was the subject of a recall. The factory did not put enough/any grease in the bearing and it would fail. Do you know whether the bike was returned to a dealer to perform that work (essentially greasing the bearing)? Also, in some cases, the inner race that rides in that bearing (is also a spacer) can wear excessively. I know of one case of a pinion gear bearing failure in the final drive but there are 3 other bearings that are part of the final drive. It's uncommon, but there's no reason to believe that you may simply have a bearing going out and that's the cause of your issue.


1) What makes you think the final drive is failing?


2) What are the symptoms?


3) Have you had anyone qualified look at it or tear the final down?


The cheapest solution would be to put another low mileage final on it. They come up from time to time on e-bay and I know there are many off parts bikes that can be bought pretty cheaply simply because they never fail. ~ Tracy



The better half and I > just returned from a 3000 mile journey on my 86 LXE to > the badlands and all the neat stuff in South Dakota ... I need to tell you all that here are a couple of things you must not leave home without. One is a replacement rect/reg (an OEM one), and the Allen wrench that takes the mirrors out of the fairing, a volt meter and a stator. Didn’t need the stator though. We blew a rectifier between Deadwood and Sturgis and what a crappy feeling you get when you smell first and then see a puff of smoke come out from under your windshield. Not a sight to see  as my bike was loaded on a ramp truck as all these Harley's rode buy with there hands up asking what happened. I yanked it apart that same day and found my AFTER market rect. was smoked on the bottom side of it. We were down for two days as we got really lucky and the local Zookie shop ordered us a new rect. (OEM part) from US Suzuki and over-nighted it to us. I put it in that am and we continued on with our trip back home. We rented a car for two days as we waited for the part and didn’t miss a thing on our adventure. It’s better to spend a little more on OEM parts that to have the cheaper one crap out on you 1500 miles from home huh!! I learned the not so fun way. Anyway that’s my 8 cents worth. ~Kevin, Lake Stevens , WA , 86 LXE


Since there is mention of aftermarket regulators in Kevin's post, I wanted to add something to the discussion since I sell aftermarket regulators on my site. A few years ago there was a similar issue that came up with the Rick's regulators. After reading about the problem I was prompted to call and talk with Rick to see what was shaking out with his regs. At that time, they were in the process of redesigning the reg. for higher output stators (like the Cade's) to solve some operational problems they had with the higher output systems. I was comfortable at that time that Rick recognized a problem existed and was working towards a solution.


With Kevin's post, I wanted to reassure myself that the regulators I am selling are up to snuff with the Cade's output so I called and talked with Rick again this morning. Rick's uses the same basic regulator to fit many different bikes that use the same stator/reg-rec type charging system. The only real difference is the wires and connectors for each bike. Rick not only beefed up the components in the reg. but he did something else that's a little unheard of in the bike reg. industry, he actually attaches the SCRs to the heat sink. I had noticed on the top of his regs. there were some tapped holes and a short length of screw was sticking out of some of them. This is quite unique since most regs. don't have a physical attachment of the heat producing devices to the body of the heat sink and the attachment provides a more direct path for the components to shed heat to the heat sink.


Rick keeps track of his failed returns and expects to see a small percentage of them just as a course of doing business. During the main riding months, he will get back 3-7% of regulators with a problem. About half of those are failed because of something else in the charging system (bad ground, bad battery, etc.) and the remainder are "manufacturing defect". He admitted that sometimes he doesn't know why some regs. fail but he knows that after being in the business for a long time that with these types of systems it's never going to be 100% no fail. There are simply too many unknowns with each bike that one of his regs. is strapped to.


After the discussion, I feel fine about selling his regs. He did express some things that he's being thinking about for the "monster" systems (Cade, Gold Wing) like a larger heat sink (size of a football field I think is the term he used) which not only gives more heat shed area but also allows for larger internal components, one that turns on instead of grounding (would reduce the load on the stator and generate less heat) but those are future projects that may or may not come to fruition.


At the end of the day I think we have to keep a couple of things in perspective with this type of charging system. 1) The system is ON all the time and making as much power as it can ALL the time (amount of power is governed by RPMs), 2) What's not being used in the system for running things and charging the battery is sent to ground by a controlled on-off grounding action of the regulator, 3) Stators nor regulators are going to last forever, we know that stators generally last about 40K miles (some less some more) and regs., due to the heat of operation, are only going to last so long as well, 4) If your components are not new and have some miles on them then carrying a spare of both for a long distance trip is not out of the question, 5) This type of system is WAYYYYY different than a system in a car and most likely not last as long, 6) make sure that the regulator has a good ground to the battery (cut out that connector), 7) If your battery is going tits up and you know it get it tested and/or replace it, a bad battery is VERY hard on the system, 8) heat is the enemy, getting rid of heat better/faster will make everything last longer.


So, I didn't want to disregard what Kevin had to say about his experience but I did want to let everyone know that the reg. failure he experienced is probably one from Rick's prior design and he's making them better now. But, even though I have an OEM regulator in my bike, before I head out to Yellowstone this year I'm going to have an extra stator and regulator with me. And, if I can get it done, I'm going to relocate the regulator so that, a) it gets better airflow, b) is much easier to replace if I have to do it on the side of the road. I will send out the details of that when I get it done. ~ Tracy




Lacombe , Alberta , Canada

1986 Brown Suzuki Cavalcade LX ~ Features are: Electronic cruise control. Passenger controlled air cushion system in seat and backrest. Adjustable rear trunk for passenger comfort. Adjustable passenger foot rests. Intercom system for driver and passenger. CB radio for communication with other motorcycles. Passenger controls for am/fm radio, tape player and CB. Removable am/fm radio, tape player with auto volume control. One touch automatic level system. Map holder. Digital warning for kickstand, lights, battery, clock, gear position-indicator. Adjustable handlebars. Heat vents to warm legs in cold weather. Cold air vents in lower fairing. Vanity mirror and light in trunk. I can email a photo so you can see it has a lot of factory -made accessories. Phil was a mechanic and he maintained it lovingly. ~LaVerne Radmore Email:


Jacksonville , Florida

I am selling my 1986 Lx. It has 60k miles. It has a new clutch, new stator, new tires, new brake pads, recent tune up and all fluids changed, I replaced the inter cowling panels and lids also added floorboards and heel toe shifter, added new mirrors, have service manual, and hitch and CD from Tracy, radio, CB and auto leveler all work, intercom works will include 2 helmets with headsets, has drivers backrest, passenger air controls work, have the pegs and mirrors that I removed, choke level is broke but have new one from bike bandit still in box. All parts that I bought came from bike bandit or members of group. I replaced the fuel tank cover and upper right fairing, of course the bike is gold but the tank cover and upper right fairing are silver. The left upper fairing isn’t in the greatest shape. Side covers are good. Am going to advertise it locally in the cycle trader for 3500 but will let a group member have it for 3000. I am in Jacksonville Florida and will travel up to 200 miles to meet someone or deliver bike. Can send photos if interested......Hawk Email:


Ofallon , Missouri

I hope you can help me.  I was just going thru my husbands e-mails, He was a member of your group and I found this from you.  The dear man passed away Aug 30.  He was an avid rider of his '87 cavalcade and bought a trike kit for it so he could take me riding too.  He was never able to attach the trike kit, he passed away too soon.  So now I have both for sale. I can be reached at  or anyone can call 636-561-8183 ~Toddy


Western North Carolina

Looking for someone that would like a pretty nice Cavalcade for a fair price. Some new parts, brakes, wheel bearings, etc. looks pretty good and runs really good. Asking $3000.00. E-mail me at I'll make arrangements to speak to a SERIOUS buyer on phone or in person.



I have decided to downsize due to the fact I will be moving in the spring. I have a 1986 lx with CB and every accessory made for this bike for sale I also have a right side faring half and other goodies this bike was a one owner (I can put you in touch with him) bike has new clutch plates and springs new tires and battery cover and champion side car matching helmet used vary little it also has a factory installed CB. This bike can be ridden any where. Delivery possible, bike and sidecar are for sale as unit but could be separated e mail me @ pics enclosed $5,800.00 or best offer I also have a lift table for sale... ~Chopper

Last updated:   Wednesday, February 06, 2013

Copyright © 2000-2013  All rights reserved