lighting issue - Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Forum : Kawasaki VN750 Forums
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Where does this wire go?
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-06-2012, 11:52 PM Thread Starter
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Question lighting issue

so i was riding home from my American Legion Riders' meeting tonight and noticed something really odd:

my lights seemed dim. head light, fuel gauge, and tach only, but not the speedo. then they brightened back up for a few seconds, then back to dim. did that a few times, then just stayed dim. when i got out of town, i hit the brights, and it seemed like the dim shut off before the bright came on. same going from bright to dim.

something aint right here, and i have NO CLUE as to what to look at. i got home and wiggled all the wires i could get my hand to without burning it trying to get it to brighten back up, but no luck. any ideas?

- 1998 Vulcan 750
- Black with red
- MCCT conversion
- Pick up coil mod
- Stereo with 3.5 inch speakers
- Sylvania ridiculously bright headlight
- Westco maintenance free battery
- Vance & Hines slash cut pipes
- Custom turn signal bracket
- Arrowhead universal turn signals (rear only)
- Kuryakyn longhorn offset highway pegs
- Suzuki Savage 650 rear shocks (2 inches shorter)
- Lowered front 1.5 inches
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-07-2012, 01:13 AM
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Did you check the fluid for your headlight?



Sorry, couldn't resist. Hopefully a bad ground or a short somewhere.

"Show me a man who makes no mistakes, and I'll show you a man who doesn't do things." Theodore Roosevelt."

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Current projects - 1986 VN750 & 1988 EL250
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-07-2012, 02:10 AM
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my '88 vn750 gave me fits a few years ago, dim lights at times, no neutral light at times, no speedo lights at times, gas gauge not working at times, finally got pissed off enough (after killing the bike at a red light, being in gear when i thought i was in neutral) to pull out the headlight. about 30 seconds into the repairs i saw a pretty big connector plug was not plugged in all the way. "click" and the headlight back in, problems were solved. check all your grounds, pull the battery cables off and clean 'em with a paste made of baking soda and water, flush well and let dry, put some dielectric grease back on 'em. next check the headlight bucket connectors and frame grounding cable. it sounds like a loose/corroded ground to me. my symptoms were about the same. good luck!

2005 VN750

2003 VN1500 Nomad FI Bagger

2004 KLX400SR Dual Sport light adv bike

1969 CB750 K0 sand cast #1767

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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-07-2012, 02:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shark88 View Post
Did you check the fluid for your headlight?
or yeah it could be the headlight fluid is low for sure! or maybe some blinker fluid dripped on the framistan and burned out a thermistor. it could even be that the cyrstal polarity has become reversed in the giznorchi tube. but at least the pilot spark hasn't gone out!! those things are such a pain to get lit again! and don't even get me started on the "710" cap!

i never believed the 710 cap myth until i asked a mechanic buddy, he said "yeah people do say it"

turn the 710 upside down to ponder what people are talking about when they say the 710 cap is leaking hehe

2005 VN750

2003 VN1500 Nomad FI Bagger

2004 KLX400SR Dual Sport light adv bike

1969 CB750 K0 sand cast #1767

couple of nice GL650 Silver Wing Interstates, one with hack

2 and 4 stroke dirt bikes

other vintage stuff back in the corner
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-07-2012, 09:34 PM Thread Starter
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headlight and blinker fluids both full and no leaks. my 710 cap was nice and tight (and surprizingly the circle gasket (o-ring) was still in good condition lol.

what made me wonder about it was the fact that it dimmed out on all the lights (that i could see while riding) EXCEPT the speedometer. that one don't make sense, but i guess if i have a bad ground or connection somewhere, about anything is possible lol

- 1998 Vulcan 750
- Black with red
- MCCT conversion
- Pick up coil mod
- Stereo with 3.5 inch speakers
- Sylvania ridiculously bright headlight
- Westco maintenance free battery
- Vance & Hines slash cut pipes
- Custom turn signal bracket
- Arrowhead universal turn signals (rear only)
- Kuryakyn longhorn offset highway pegs
- Suzuki Savage 650 rear shocks (2 inches shorter)
- Lowered front 1.5 inches
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-08-2012, 12:29 AM
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The speedometer is only a 3w bulb, so that might not dim as quickly.

"Show me a man who makes no mistakes, and I'll show you a man who doesn't do things." Theodore Roosevelt."

2007 Victory Kingpin
Current projects - 1986 VN750 & 1988 EL250
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-11-2012, 10:41 PM Thread Starter
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so i may have found part of my problem. the other day, i was riding and the bike started pretty hard. got done and parked the bike. decided for a better parking spot, so i turned the key, and when i hit the start button, all the lights went out! no power what so ever. started messin with wires till i got to the obvious. lifted the seat to check the battery and low and behold, the ground terminal on the battery MELTED!!! not all of it, just the top part. was able to fix it enough to get me back home the next day. cleaned the connector when i put it back together and it started smoother and faster than ever. just ordered a new westco battery, and when it comes, i'll be installing a battery tender and some of that anti corrosion stuff and putting new connector ends on as well. hopefully that is the end of my electrical problems

- 1998 Vulcan 750
- Black with red
- MCCT conversion
- Pick up coil mod
- Stereo with 3.5 inch speakers
- Sylvania ridiculously bright headlight
- Westco maintenance free battery
- Vance & Hines slash cut pipes
- Custom turn signal bracket
- Arrowhead universal turn signals (rear only)
- Kuryakyn longhorn offset highway pegs
- Suzuki Savage 650 rear shocks (2 inches shorter)
- Lowered front 1.5 inches
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-13-2012, 05:02 AM
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You need to consult a mechanic before its too late because this can cause you more damage if you keep running with this sort of condition.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-13-2012, 07:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LenaSuzu View Post
You need to consult a mechanic before its too late because this can cause you more damage if you keep running with this sort of condition.
The OP said
Quote:
lifted the seat to check the battery and low and behold, the ground terminal on the battery MELTED!!! not all of it, just the top part. was able to fix it enough to get me back home the next day.
this tells me that it is fixed... a bad ground will cause excessive heat, melt wires, and do all kinds of funky stuff with the electrical system to include dim lights, no lights, hard starting... ect..
To the OP,
I would take your own advice and wait for the battery before going through with any more testing.
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 06-13-2012, 07:47 PM
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Grounds,Grounds,Grounds!!! I really think that this is the very first starting thing to look at when you are having probs with a dc system. A faulty ground will make you go crazy trying to sort it out. ex-turn on left signal-brake light comes on, hit brake and headlight goes out so on & so on---CK GROUNDS!!!!!!!!!

04-3,200 miles bought July 2011 with 928 miles. Loaded with acessories to many to list here, see my albums for more details! I also make a custom tank bib specific for the 750 if anyone is interested, ck my albums for some pics.
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