Ignition Switch cleaning

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Post by peteybug »

CROCUS: 1) A dark red powdered variety of natural iron oxide [[ferric oxide]], Fe2O3, used as an abrasive for polishing (American Heritage Dictionary). 2) The name is applied to the peroxide of iron obtained [[artificially]] by calcination of sulphate of iron, and used as a polishing powder. (Oxford English Dictionary)

CROCUS CLOTH: A very slightly abrasive cloth which contains the mineral ‘crocoite,’ lead chromate, PbCrO4. The mineral was named in French in 1838 by Berthier crocoise, from Greek krokoeis, saffron-colored, from krokos, saffron (crocus is another name for saffron, an orange-red condiment consisting of the dried orange-colored stigmas of Crocus sativus and used to color and flavor food); altered by Dana in 1844 to crocoisite, and in 1868 to crocoite (American Heritage Dictionary, Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Oxford English Dictionary) Crocus Cloth
Crocus Cloth
This is a very fine grit iron-oxide coated abrasive on a cloth backing. It is used to polish after most of the work has been done with emery or aluminum oxide. Normally used only on metals.
love new ideas for old wing's. AS I have three and am always working on them

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Post by Sidecar Bob »

OK. I stand corrected.

But I would recommend flushing it well with contact cleaner afterward because iron oxide is conductive.

Actually, flushing it with contact cleaner is a pretty good idea no matter what you use.

Another possibity is to use a Scotchbrite pad and contact cleaner. I just did the commutator of 650's starter motor that way and it came really clean really fast.
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Post by cycleman »

Often when you take the base off it will come loose on its own later & cause the bike to die. You'll chase your tail off trying to figure out what is wrong.

Wire the plastic portion to the metal part of the switch when you have it out. That way it can't come loose. These switches have a habit of loosing continuity.
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Ignition S/W fixes


Post by Bufobufo »

Just had my s/w assy off due to a stuck lock, comes out easy. Lock freed with light oil and a few 'technical taps'.
As for the lock electrics, try to a avoid a strip, I did one on a Suzuki because it fell apart and, as someone said, it needed to be held together externaly afterwards.
Switch cleaner can work wonders, buy or borrow (best). I have some Servisol super 10, very good on Boeings as well.
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Re: Ignition Switch cleaning


Post by luludog »

Pete, just a word of Thanks for your tutorial. Had an ignition switch problem and was able to follow your excellent instructions. Works great now. Saved me some $$$ too.

Thanks again!

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Re: Ignition Switch cleaning


Post by larryb »

I have my 79 GL 1000 ignition key switch out of the bike. My headlights and gauge lights are not working. When I meter the posts on the ignition switch I only get a closed on two of the pins opposite each other. From looking at the switch position schematic I believe I should get two closed switches when I meter the pins. Am I on the right path??
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Re: Ignition Switch cleaning


Post by roncar »

If you look at where the wires are, in conjunction with the switch position:

1. in lock or in off positions no connections are made
2. in the acc position a connection is made from the red wire to the light green/black wire (applies power to the acc terminal)
3. in the on position a connection is made from the red wire to the black wire and the light green/black wire (applies power to the fuses and fan)
...also a connection is made between the 2 brown/white wires (this connects the tail light to power)
4. in the park position a connection is made between the red, green/black, and brown wires. (applies power to the acc terminal and tail light only.)

The only connection in the switch that affects the headlights and gauge lights is the on position red to black. If that connection was bad, nothing on the bike would work (ie wouldn't power up or run.)

If your switch makes connections as described above, check your fuses and their sockets. Remember, just because the fuses look good, doesn't mean that they are.
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Re: Ignition Switch cleaning


Post by Barney T Weasel »

Thanks for this thread. :-D :orange
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Re: Ignition Switch cleaning


Post by Scooter »

Great post peteybug! I have found that a 3M disc on my die grinder cleans up and even removes grooves. Since it's flat, I just "resurface" the contact area, plastic and contacts. Keep the tool at a lower speed and just touch the contact surface to the moving 3M pad. Wear gloves and be careful to keep part concentric with the 3M pad, or the switch might fly to the other side of the shop :-? . Since the contacts are spring loaded you can remove quite a bit, but only take off as much as is necessary, to restore the surface.
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