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Ignition switch on/off

Electrical issues
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Ignition switch on/off


Post by 57Kicker » Thu Jun 19, 2003 1:30 am

Maybe this is nature of the beast but i installed a new 6-pole ignition switch on my 57flh to replace the old 6pole switch, and as fate would have it the new one has the same symptoms as the old one.
From the first position (on with no lights) it some times won't make contact to give me spark at the points. This is indicated by wheather or not my horn works. No ignition. After kicking my guts out without any luck i'll press the horn button and find it dead. I wiggle the switch, the horn works and PRESTO! one kick it goes! @#$%ing thing.
Anyways onto the next stage... if it is running and i switch to the next click on the switch for lights...lights come on and bike shuts of. (double #$%@) I wiggle the switch just right and I'll have lights and ignition again.
Soooo...after looking at how the switch is built it would appear to be BULLET PROOF why is it I seem to be having this problem? I can't see any loose wires so I wonder if its just the way it is and I have to live with it? Or is there something I can do to the switch to remedy it?
I'll buy you a beer if we can sort this out


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Re: Ignition switch on/off


Post by Cotten » Thu Jun 19, 2003 1:47 am

The wiggleing aspect indicates that something is out of order in the switch itself.
Add to the confusion the fact that 6-pole switches require a totally different wiring arrangement than the original: Four terminals must be jumper'd in order to wire like the book...

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Re: Ignition switch on/off


Post by kell » Thu Jun 19, 2003 3:49 am

Take the wires off the switch, check them with a continuity tester while wiggling the connectors.
And maybe you should take all the connectors and replace them, even if they test good. I know I've had old crimp connections that, while still working, came apart with just a pull of the fingers.
Vibrations, oil and grease seeping in, and just working on the wiring will loosen up those crimp connections over time.
Not to mention (well, I'm going to mention it) crimp connectors cost pennies.

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Re: Ignition switch on/off


Post by Sidecar » Thu Jun 19, 2003 2:23 pm

I don't think you'll be buying anyone beer real quick like.
I have a similar problem. My problem lies in changing from ignition to headlight and back. It kills the bike in both directions. When switching up to lights you must jiggle it to get anything at all. It will go back to ignition and have power without jiggling though. There seems to be a big dead spot between the 2 positions.
I had the same problem on a 4wd Honda ATV. I sprayed white chain grease from a pressurized can into it and have not had any problems since then. I'm getting about ready to try this on the H-D ignition.

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Re: Ignition switch on/off


Post by 59pan » Thu Jun 19, 2003 11:45 pm

I am glad to see that I am not the only one who has this problem! Maybe we should start a support group.
If I try to go from position 1 to position 2 (turning on the lights) I have to rev the motor slightly. That gives me enough time to find the sweet spot with the switch that will keep the motor running.
Goof ball stuff but I love her anyway!

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Re: Ignition switch on/off


Post by dereborn » Fri Jun 20, 2003 8:40 am

Yep! Same thing! Took the switch apart and cleaned the contacts. Got a little better, but I still have to rev it a little to turn the lights on... One of these little things that makes your bike a personality, isn't it?

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Re: Ignition switch on/off


Post by dirtydistrict » Fri Jun 20, 2003 9:31 am

Yes, add to this the little oily spot every time you stop, the way evo riders look at you (does it REALLY works ???!) and you feel like a mutant from outer space. Great !!! ;D

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Re: Ignition switch on/off


Post by 57Kicker » Sun Jun 22, 2003 5:17 am

Thanks for the tip. I ran new wires when I re-located the voltage regulator and thats when I found a lose connection on the wire from the "bat" terminal on the regulator to the +battery terminal. Slid right out when I tugged it. Next I'll solder all the joints I can in hopes to eliminate any futer probs.
Just as a note, I tried several times starting my bike with the lights on (2nd position) with great success! Hope it wont cause any problems doing this. Same deal...turn on switch, beep horn, check lights and kick away. Third kick usually does it.

*beer for kell* and a round for the house.....

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Re: Ignition switch on/off


Post by dirtpandan58 » Sun Jun 22, 2003 5:45 am

I had the same problem with an after market switch. I found an OEM switch in a box with some other old parts in my garage. Even had the key in it (woohoo).
Put it on and problem solved.
Alot of that new stuff is realy crap.
They make another switch that they call electronic that bolts rigt up. Even looks the same.
I'm told from the guy that I buy my parts from that it is not actualy an electroninic switch. But doesn't have that bar to post connection deal that seems to be the big prblem.
I think if mine goes bad I'll replace it with one of those.

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Re: Ignition switch on/off


Post by VintageTwin » Sun Jun 22, 2003 7:18 pm

Don't use a Taiwan switch. They have dead zones. Just turn a rough AM switch and then turn a smooth Japan re-pop. Feel the difference? V-Twin used to say "import" or "Japan" with their switches. Now the Jap ones are called "Replica", and anything they call "replica" is better quality than the alternative. A Replica '47-67 switch is (VT 32-8077)

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Re: Ignition switch on/off


Post by Cotten » Mon Jun 23, 2003 1:36 am

With all due respect to V-TWIN Mfg. ( I order from them weekly...),
I wouldn't consider a reproduction switch accurate unless it accepted a B-1 key blank, as per the original Briggs and Stratton switches.
The mechanical switch design lasts generations, as many originals are still in service. Perhaps the "electronic design is better,... but only time will tell.
The mechanicals can be serviced: it's just hardware. Turn the contact bar to opposite of its worn spots.
Whoa dude it works.

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