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FLAME Ev'rything
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Discussion Starter #1
Gentlemen (& ladies)...First of all I'd like to bid everyone on VTF a Happy (& Safe) Thanksgiving.
I'm sittin' here eatin' a bowl of "Trix" & have reached the conclusion that the new Trix really SUCK. They should have just left 'em alone!
Now for the matter at hand...Been doin' some night ridin' lately & noticed that when the bike is runnin', headlight on, the headlight will brighten when I touch the clutch lever...Whats up with this? Help me out NewUltra.
Thanks, T.
 

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Shithead
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4,836 Posts
Just touch, or pull ?
 

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Highly Seasoned Rider!
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4,884 Posts
I'd probably be willing to bet the.......

Tony S said:
Gentlemen (& ladies)...First of all I'd like to bid everyone on VTF a Happy (& Safe) Thanksgiving.
I'm sittin' here eatin' a bowl of "Trix" & have reached the conclusion that the new Trix really SUCK. They should have just left 'em alone!
Now for the matter at hand...Been doin' some night ridin' lately & noticed that when the bike is runnin', headlight on, the headlight will brighten when I touch the clutch lever...Whats up with this? Help me out NewUltra.
Thanks, T.

.....deed to the farm that you have the dreaded "Shovelhead Rotten Wire/Connector" syndrome. This is because, if the FXE is anything like my FXS was, all of the wires are stuffed into the headlight, right?

The symptom as mentioned sounds like a poor ground to the headlight. When the clutch is pulled, the tightening of the cable presents a better ground path and the headlight brightens. Remember, you probably have rubber cushions on the bars to isolate them.......

Silly you say? Bordering on the Occult? Nope, just a Shovelhead. I had nothing but trouble......let me repeat that with somewhat greater emphasis....NOTHING BUT TROUBLE with my wiring until I got fed up one winter and ripped the whole harness out and re-did it so that all of the connectors were in- between the tanks and now only three wires go into the headlight: High beam, Low Beam and ground. The heat from the engine keeps the connectors nice and clean. Heh heh.

The wires (if they are n the headlight) and connectors will get corroded and tend to rot. Sometimes the ignition will quit. Sometimes, it wil lbe the headlight and sometimes, the turn signals. They used open connectors that are a nice target for moisture and rot.

A few years ago I went to the Hollister, California rally and the headlight and ignition started to act up intermitteltly. I had to jury rig several wires and leave the headlight unit out to get it to work. Fortunately, I have two passing lights in addition to the headlight and I was able to ride home with those. I later discovered that two pins of the main power connector (orange wires) had rotted together so that it was shorting to a ground wire next to the hot inside of the connector. Nice, huh?

You might be able to get by on the cheap by running a separate ground from the headlight bulb to the frame.

Oh, another thing. HD ran the full current of the headlight through the headlight dimmer switch. That means, there are no relays. Sometimes those switches get a little dirty and will cause a dim headlight. My first inclination however, due to the clutch-brightening episodes, is that the ground is poor due to impending failure of the wires and connectors.

Good luck and happy wiring! :)
 

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Knower of Stuff
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1,978 Posts
Needs a better ground to the front end. Touching the lever probably pushes it tight up againest the metal housing, creating a better ground through the clutch cable. Shovel shake keeps the lever moving and an interminit ground. Check the ground wires to the headlight and front end.
Newultra beat me to it and said it way better. Thanks.
 

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FLAME Ev'rything
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65 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Thankyou Gents...I have the week off & will get to the "troubleshoot" just as soon as I drink my pot 'o' cofee & smoke my 10 Marlboros. Sounds like a relatively easy task...providing I don't turn it into MAJOR project. I might just take the same route as you, Ultra, & re-wire my bike this winter. Seems all I've ever written to the Forum for is some sort of wiring problem.
I was going to use my week off wrenchin' on my Pro-Street '55 "Effie" but I cannot find any peace of mind when one of my Toys isn't exactly perfect.

Thanks again & I'll let you know the results later tonight...Tony
 
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