well it depends on what fries first.
if the Regulator goes, your voltage will go high (actually had that happen on my GS550) the Headlight would go really REALLY bright and then finally burn out. I burned out dash lights, turn signals, just about every light.
the regulator part limits down stream voltage to like 15 volts and dumps the rest to ground, that's why they get hot. When you are running under 5 or 6k RPM, the generator isn't producing enough to feed the loads so the battery covers the loads, but as you cruise down the road at 8k RPM for 25 minutes the generator is over producing so the reg/rec is dumping that extra to ground.
If the rectifier burns out... no voltage/amps are being lined from the generator and line voltage is what ever battery voltage is.
So it can do either, high or low/none voltage.
and it can fail, then cool down, and work again (for a bit) so it's a tough one to track down.
but you have the classic symptoms... a good battery that suddenly goes dead for no good reason, and a bike that just dies out of no where. My CBR died at 60mph on the highway when the first reg/rec went.
hope that helps
Thanks for the insight Rifleman, one final question I am curious about though. In your experience, when the R-R unit goes out, does it go high or low voltage output and does it just quit completely or sometime work and sometimes not depending upon temperature?
This battery also has me scratching my head as it shows an apparent full charge but nothing but relay chatter with starter on, like it's got a couple of dead cells.