Neutral switch problem?? - Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Forum : Kawasaki VN750 Forums
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post #1 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-27-2011, 08:28 PM Thread Starter
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Neutral switch problem??

Hey guys I got something going on with my ride, Ill start it up run to the store but when i come out it wont start (starter wont kick in), so Ill put it in gear, back into neautral, move it a little bit then it will go just like everything is normal.

I think its probably something with whatever prevents it from starting when not in neutral, but just looking for ideas.

Im totally willing to by pass that switch and even the ignition etc, just loooking for some input.

1992 vn750, 16000 miles
seat shaved , lowered 2 inches in rear, ears shaved, degoated, cpanel is gone just a drag specialties 2.5" speedo
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post #2 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-27-2011, 08:51 PM
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That's funny, I just started having the exact same problem. If I put the bike in gear and then back into neutral, the starter switch works right away.
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post #3 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-27-2011, 09:15 PM
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The neutral switch is on the lower back part of the engine with one wire attached.
Try pulling the connector off and on a few times to clean the contacts. Apply a little dielectric grease to prevent moisture from causing future corrosion.

Also try wiggling the key back and forth in the switch a few times, then try again.

It has also been reported that the weight of extra keys jangling around on the ignition key ring can damage the switch over time, or maybe even short out on the dash.

In a pinch, pull the right side cover off and jump across the starter relay contacts with a metal tool or heavy wire to bypass all the safety switches.

Gordon

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Purchased May 16, 2008
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Last edited by OlHossCanada; 06-27-2011 at 09:20 PM.
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post #4 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-27-2011, 09:39 PM
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Does the neutral indicator light up and the bike won't turn over? Does it start if you hold the clutch in?
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post #5 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-27-2011, 09:51 PM Thread Starter
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Well I dont have indicator light anymore so Im not sure on that.

the bike has never started with the clutch pulled in. Only in neautral and no clutch will it fire to start.

1992 vn750, 16000 miles
seat shaved , lowered 2 inches in rear, ears shaved, degoated, cpanel is gone just a drag specialties 2.5" speedo
awaiting some pipes
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post #6 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-27-2011, 10:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toddmurdoch View Post
Well I dont have indicator light anymore so Im not sure on that.

the bike has never started with the clutch pulled in. Only in neautral and no clutch will it fire to start.
humm..... for the starter to spin you have to ground the starter relay coil in the JB. There are two ways this is supposed to happen; bike in neutral or clutch pulled in. IF the starter won't spin with the clutch in, then the clutch switch or wiring is messed up. My guess is your problem would be solved by running the green wire that is attached to the neutral switch directly to ground. This will bypass the neutral switch. Of course the starter will spin with the bike in gear if you push the start button, so do this at your own risk......
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post #7 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-28-2011, 01:59 AM
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Originally Posted by OlHossCanada View Post
It has also been reported that the weight of extra keys jangling around on the ignition key ring can damage the switch over time, or maybe even short out on the dash.
Unproven myth. The lock cylinder and the switch itself are two separate units, with the switch being insulated from the lock cylinder by its plastic housing; the keys cannot short out the switch.

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Originally Posted by OlHossCanada View Post
Also try wiggling the key back and forth in the switch a few times, then try again.
The lock cylinder actuator can (will?) cause wear in the slot where the metal actuator turns the plastic switch rotor. If the wear causes the switch to not quite make contact like it should, or short two contacts that shouldn't be making contact, wiggling the keys may cause it to line up like it should and make proper contact. (It's more likely the contacts in the switch itself are wearing out; copper is softer than the bakelite/plastic the switch housing is made of.)

BTW, this is backed up by experimenting; I got to wondering about it, and took a lock cylinder apart that I'd busted a key off in. I've also rebuilt several switches. That works for awhile...usually.

Jim

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post #8 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-28-2011, 02:04 AM
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Quote:
Unproven myth. The lock cylinder and the switch itself are two separate units, with the switch being insulated from the lock cylinder by its plastic housing; the keys cannot short out the switch.
how come my keys caused sparks when they hit the handle bar clamp.. also how come would the ignition key work as a grounding spot for my MM? I also have had my ignition switch apart.. multiple times to fix the week contact springs before i finally got rid of the hockey puck.. one of the best mods I ever did.
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post #9 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-28-2011, 02:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slimvulcanrider View Post
how come my keys caused sparks when they hit the handle bar clamp.. also how come would the ignition key work as a grounding spot for my MM? I also have had my ignition switch apart.. multiple times to fix the week contact springs before i finally got rid of the hockey puck.. one of the best mods I ever did.
The keys/lock cylinder are a direct ground, essentially bolted to the frame. If you're getting sparks, you've got a short situation somewhere.

There is one situation where the switch could short thru the lock cylinder assembly, that dawned on me after I posted; hairline cracks in the switch housing itself. Hard to find, and hard to diagnose, but could explain why you're getting sparks. Only way to know for sure may be to replace it with a new switch.

Remember the old bakelite coils in car ignition systems? You might not be able to see or find a crack in one, but you could damn sure tell one was there when it bit ya!

And by "hockey puck" you mean??

Jim

J.D.
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'95 Vulcan 750 "Therapy II",
aka "Raggedy Ann"
'95 VN750 project
'03 VN800B "The Little Black"
'04 VN800E Drifter project
'93 VN1500A custom project
VROC #16185
GCVROC #33

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post #10 of 24 (permalink) Old 06-28-2011, 03:44 AM
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Sometimes a starter winding will get a dead spot in it, and putting the bike in gear and moving it will jog the starter off the dead spot so she'll turn over. Haven't heard of that problem in a long time, but I know it does happen from time to time. Eventually, it will call for a rebuilt starter with new windings.
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