System - No Alternator
The deal is....buy a large car battery (or a deep
cycle, if you're really serious about it!) and place it in the trunk.
Consider an AGM type if your budget will handle it. Mine is a
conventional wet cell. There are some advantages to using two large
6-volt cells in series.
You need a disconnecting knife switch terminal for
the hot side (AutoZone) and a plain terminal for the negative. You'll
also have to install a 30A automotive circuit breaker on the hot side
terminal right after the knife switch. Run #14 or #12 wires thru a
grommet hole in the trunk floor (you may have to enlarge one...and use a
grommet unless you like mobile welding) Connect them to the existing
Ural wiring: positive to positive, negative to ground on the bike.
Disconnect and remove the alternator. Use a small
bolt to connect the two wires on the alternator output terminal. Tape up
this connection GOOD and then the alternator lamp wire and tie them up
out of sight.
To cover the hole you can get as elaborate as you
want..... I used a piece of 1/2 ext plywood and a sheet of gasket paper
with two fender washers...took about 5 minutes to make and has lasted
35000km (ok, after many critical comments about the wood grain, I did
paint it black!) :)
If your batteries are of different types or
capacities, never leave both of them in the circuit at the same
time....their different electrical "needs" will confuse your smart
charger and they won't charge properly .... eventually, one of them will
destroy the other one! You'd need some kind of isolation system if you
want to do this and that can get complicated and costly. My initial
conversion with a standard car battery cost less than $60 for all the
parts, including the battery! You can buy a battery box if you like.
Again, I used a piece of plywood to reinforce the trunk floor.
When you're using the aux battery in the trunk,
use the bike's battery main switch (under the seat) to shut it off.
Depending on the battery you choose, you should have 300-800 mile
range.....more than that if you can kill the headlight (with LEDs bulbs
and a low watt aux headlight, I had mine up to 2500km between charges!)
If you have extra running lights, you'll want to be able to switch them
off. There are cheap LED charge level indicators available.
Once you drain the aux battery (and you do want to
avoid this when possible!), use it's knife switch to disconnect it and
turn the bike's battery back on....you'll have 50-80 miles on a fully
charged Ural battery (again, more than that if you can kill the
headlight). If you don't have a switch you can pull the headlight's fuse
in an emergency. As I mentioned, never have both batteries switched on
and active at the same time....the fully discharged aux deep cycle
battery will drain a fully charged Ural battery in about 10 minutes!
Charge both batteries once a week in cool weather
and every two weeks in warm weather (or every 200-300 miles). The size
of the battery you choose will affect its range....I used the biggest
deep cycle I could comfortably fit in the trunk! Keep the bike's battery
topped off in case you need it to get home. In VERY cold weather, with
sub-freezing temps, your range will drop to about half that of warm
And remember (and this is important!)..... when
running on aux, you have to kick the bike to start it.......you Can NOT
use the starter. If you want to use the electric starter with the
auxiliary battery, you need to run like a #2 or #4 wire (something the
diameter of a jumper cable!!) to the trunk battery.......it draws major
amps and will melt your wiring if you hit the button and hold it (it
won't crank..... it will just growl and make the wires smoke and glow
and finally, melt down!) Of course, you can reach under the seat and
flip the switch on and start it and then switch back off. Very
convenient if you stall in traffic. Its good for about 10 starts on a
Fortunately, Urals usually start on one or two
kicks...and thank goodness for that!
If you do get a deep cycle battery, get a deep
cycle charger......trickle charge the Ural battery to top it off each
time you charge the aux battery.
And that's about
it.....I've run over 35,000km in 2 years using this method!