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Author Topic: Lights problem on my Sixty5  (Read 294 times)

Bulletbaz

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Lights problem on my Sixty5
« on: April 27, 2013, 06:28:04 PM »
I re-fitted the battery to my Sixty5 today after giving it a good charge (it hadn't been ridden for a few months, during which time the battery had been indoors and periodically trickle-charged). Now when I switch the lights on, the ammeter flicks instantly to total discharge with no lights working (sidelights, tail light or headlights) as if there is a dead short. Yet the indicators are bright and flashing normally and the brake light works, and there is current getting to the horn, although its sound is very muted (it might just need adjusting). This is when the engine is not running (I am aware that the headlight only works properly when the engine is running, but the side lights and tail light should come on). The ignition circuit is working normally and the engine starts ok, and the ammeter is showing a charge when the engine is running with lights switched off. (I didnít try switching the lights on when the engine is running). I cannot try the electric start, as I converted it to kickstart-only three years ago. Does anyone with knowledge of such matters, have an idea where I should start looking? Thanks!

ace.cafe

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Re: Lights problem on my Sixty5
« Reply #1 on: April 27, 2013, 06:51:35 PM »
I think you should try starting the engine, and see how it is then.
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baird4444

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Re: Lights problem on my Sixty5
« Reply #2 on: April 27, 2013, 10:46:43 PM »
All sounds about right to me. If the engine is NOT running it will
be at discharge on the amp meter. The question is does the needle go to
center or right of to green when running above idle.
           - Mike
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        -Cody Baird
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 but tomorrow I shall be sober and you will still be ugly'
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Bulletbaz

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Re: Lights problem on my Sixty5
« Reply #3 on: April 28, 2013, 10:20:27 AM »
I have now traced the fault (initially) to the small light in the headlight shell. I took the headlamp off and discovered that the reflector is live and the rim shorts against the nacelle. The bayonet fitting has metal to metal contact with the reflector, but I think that is standard. When I remove the small bulbholder from the reflector and refit the headlight, all the lights work ok. I tested the bulbholder off the bike, by hooking it up to a spare car battery and it lit up ok (as it does on the bike) and when I touched it to a steel cabinet it continued to light and without sparking - unlike when it is fitted to the bike (when it sparks the headlight against the nacelle and kills all the front lights, including the speedo/ammeter lights and the tail light). As I said, the indicators and brake light are unaffected. Clearly something else is not right and I am now at a loss as where to look next!

Blltrdr

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Re: Lights problem on my Sixty5
« Reply #4 on: April 28, 2013, 11:44:15 AM »
I have now traced the fault (initially) to the small light in the headlight shell. I took the headlamp off and discovered that the reflector is live and the rim shorts against the nacelle. The bayonet fitting has metal to metal contact with the reflector, but I think that is standard. When I remove the small bulbholder from the reflector and refit the headlight, all the lights work ok. I tested the bulbholder off the bike, by hooking it up to a spare car battery and it lit up ok (as it does on the bike) and when I touched it to a steel cabinet it continued to light and without sparking - unlike when it is fitted to the bike (when it sparks the headlight against the nacelle and kills all the front lights, including the speedo/ammeter lights and the tail light). As I said, the indicators and brake light are unaffected. Clearly something else is not right and I am now at a loss as where to look next!

It sounds like you have an aftermarket light like mine. Do you have the 7" light that uses a H4 bulb and has a small pilot light below the main light? If so, my pilot light bulb holder is held in by a rubber grommet. I don't understand where you would be getting contact unless yours is mounted wrong.

It is a great light to have working. I have mine wired in so it can be switched on if the alternator takes a dive which leaves the bike to run on the battery. The light isn't legal for night or day running but would probably get you home in a pinch.
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barenekd

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Re: Lights problem on my Sixty5
« Reply #5 on: April 28, 2013, 11:44:55 AM »
Try looking at the wires where they go into the socket. It sound like the power wire is moving around and making occasional contact with the shell.
Bare
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Bulletbaz

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Re: Lights problem on my Sixty5
« Reply #6 on: May 01, 2013, 08:42:28 AM »
This is so weird!

As I was still having no luck tracing the fault, I tried swapping the spade terminals around on the pilot light just to see what happenned - and BINGO - problem solved! Or is it??? Because during my checks I carefully marked the two spades to ensure they went back the same (same way that they had been for four trouble-free years in fact!). It's as if the polarity has somehow been reversed for some reason (and no, the battery has never been fitted the wrong way!).

So it may (or may not!) have been fixed now. How could this possibly be?

Blltrdr

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Re: Lights problem on my Sixty5
« Reply #7 on: May 01, 2013, 09:37:00 AM »
This is so weird!

As I was still having no luck tracing the fault, I tried swapping the spade terminals around on the pilot light just to see what happenned - and BINGO - problem solved! Or is it??? Because during my checks I carefully marked the two spades to ensure they went back the same (same way that they had been for four trouble-free years in fact!). It's as if the polarity has somehow been reversed for some reason (and no, the battery has never been fitted the wrong way!).

So it may (or may not!) have been fixed now. How could this possibly be?

You should look at the wire that was giving you problems. Inspect for damage to the insulation. Finding and fixing this issue is a must.
2003 Classic 500 5 spd
1992 Kawasaki ZG 1200 Voyager XII
1977 Yamaha XS 360-2D (Cafe Project)

High On Octane

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Re: Lights problem on my Sixty5
« Reply #8 on: May 01, 2013, 10:41:13 AM »
Try looking at the wires where they go into the socket. It sound like the power wire is moving around and making occasional contact with the shell.
Bare

+1 to Bare.  I too have seen this happen on more than 1 occasion.  Investigate all the wires in that area that are prone to repeated bending and/or abrasion on any chassis part.  Sounds like you have an exposed wire somewhere that is making contact with the chassis and grounding out.  Look very carefully for cracks, breaks, pinches, burn marks, broken terminals and such.  You have a problem somewhere and if not addressed and taken care, you could risk an electrical fire while riding the bike.

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