Quirky ignition - Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Forum : Kawasaki VN750 Forums
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-13-2013, 02:17 PM Thread Starter
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Quirky ignition

I noticed from the very beginning that my ignition was stiff and that I had to go past run to lock then back to get the start button to work. I shot some wd-40 in the keyhole and the issues went away.

Recently, however, as I ride the bike occasionally cuts out and the tach falls to zero even though the lights all stay on. Sometimes it's only for a second, sometimes I have to reach down and jiggle the key for it to come back. I'm going to go pull the dash apart later and have a look, but in the meantime what do you guys think is wrong other than just replacing the ignition switch? I'd rather not have to buy another used switch if I can repair or bypass this faulty one.

Last edited by SlowBox; 04-13-2013 at 02:26 PM.
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-13-2013, 02:38 PM
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Try using the word - puck - for a search in the forum and you should find posts about cleaning the puck in the ignition switch. I haven't had to do it, but it sounds like that may be the problem on your switch.

edit: Well, someone used puck for a username so you have to dig a little. I found this one:

https://www.vn750.com/forum/archive/i...p/t-18441.html

Quote:
Ceal
05-23-2011, 03:46 PM
I had a similar problem. Bike would start up but it would die when I turned the bars to the right. I replaced my whole wiring diagram (not hard to do) and the problem went away.

Cleaning the contacts on the ignition switch's "hockey puck" would be a good thing to do as well just in case it's the switch itself, which has been mentioned here before that could cause something like this too.

To find the hockey puck just look at the switch, where you put in the key to start the bike... then look under it and you'll see the switch's cylinder and beneath it, a plastic thing that looks like a hockey puck. That's what you have to take off, take apart and clean. Be careful though, cause there are small springs in there that you don't want to lose! First time I pulled it off it opened accidentally and I had to spend a half hour looking for the small springs and ball bearings.

So you take the hockey puck off carefully so it doesn't crack open, take it inside and onto a desk or maybe even try to open it over a big bowl in case things to pop out. When it's open you'll see some copper contacts, clean them until they're shiny again and then take the small springs and stretch them out a bit and then reassemble it and put it back on the bike.

If that doesn't work, you can either try to trace the cable that's giving you the problem or change out the wiring. I found my wire harness for like $12 on ebay.

Hope this helps out a bit.

Last edited by Spockster; 04-13-2013 at 02:44 PM.
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-13-2013, 04:49 PM
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I was just gonna mention the "hockey puck" looks like Spockster "took the words out of my mouth" well, out of my post, to be more literal lol.

That definitely seems like a "hockey puck" problem though, so you gotta look under the switch where the key goes into, to the actual contacts and wiring that make the electrical stuff work.

1985 VN700 unknown mileage (over 33K)

AGM Battery
Iridium spark plugs
NGK wires and caps
Relocated R/R
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-15-2013, 01:51 AM Thread Starter
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Alright guys, I pulled the headlight assembly and key cylinder earlier and took the guts out of the switch itself. It looked to me like the dielectric greasy got old and was causing the problems. There was actually copper smeared across the backside of where the contacts drag the plastic. It's all nice and clean now, well see how it rides this next week since the weather is supposed to be so nice.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-15-2013, 02:21 AM
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A previous owner must have done some work on it before, since there isn't supposed to be any grease in there. Hope everything runs smoothly now.

Did you stretch the little springs a bit?

1985 VN700 unknown mileage (over 33K)

AGM Battery
Iridium spark plugs
NGK wires and caps
Relocated R/R
Marbled
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-15-2013, 03:54 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ceal View Post
A previous owner must have done some work on it before, since there isn't supposed to be any grease in there. Hope everything runs smoothly now.

Did you stretch the little springs a bit?

No sir, I did not. If it still gives me problems then I'll go back in and pull them apart a little.
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 04-15-2013, 09:26 AM
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Yea, it helps the parts make contact and everything feels a little tighter. Hopefully the cleaning will be enough though.

When I had mine apart I had to clean everything up, sand the contacts a little bit to remove a thin layer of rust (got them nice and shiny), I stretched the springs for better contact and in my case, I had to resolder a cable that looked like it was about to let go.

I got around 6 more months out of that. Eventually I just had to replace it.

1985 VN700 unknown mileage (over 33K)

AGM Battery
Iridium spark plugs
NGK wires and caps
Relocated R/R
Marbled
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