Ok, I've been working on this bike (my harley). So I'm connecting the rear turn lights and they won't light up. decided to check the battery and it's showing maybe 6 volts or so. oh, by the way, I haven't had it started since last fall. I accidentally hit the start button instead of the turn signal and the engine turns over. so I'm still tinkering with it and happen to notice the solenoid is warm and I'm thinking maybe it's still engaged so I go to remove the ground cable when I notice the battery is quite warm too. In the time it takes to disconnect the cable the battery is getting warmer, actually almost hot by now. So I get the battery out and I'm pretty sure it is still getting hotter. I'm starting to think there is a chance something bad is going on and it could blow up so I sat it outside of the garage where it is now. This is a seal cycle-tron battery from interstate and in all my years of mechanicing I don't recall ever having a battery heat up like that. I checked everything to see if it's ground somewhere but nothing.
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My first question is did the bike work OK before it was stripped and painted?
It is possible paint has got onto the main earthing (ground) point on the chassis/frame. I would first check that there is a good earth connection from battery to frame and all light units. Other than the turn signals coming on do any other lights show when you turn the ignition on? If no I would try checking the battery. Remove the battery from the bike AND THIS IS MOST IMPORTANT remove the negative lead first then the positive.
Check the battery has voltage approx 12.5 to 13.2 volts is OK, next connect a 21 watt bulb to the terminals and see if the light dims over 1 minute. If OK get a dedicated motorcycle battery charger (a charger for a car is no good) with an output of less than 1 amp. Charge the battery for a few hours. Refit battery into your bike AND THIS IS MOST IMPORTANT TOO re-connect the positive lead first then the negative.
WARNING never try to jump start your bike from a car/van etc. The more powerful batteries in these vehicles will fry your bikes electrics.
ALWAYS use a dedicated motorcycle battery charger.
ALWAYS remove and refit your battery as stated above.
Hi Dep_buchholz, always check the bulbs first for broken filaments. Then check the connection at the rear fender wiring harness, inspect for corroded, broken or loose pins. Use a dab of dielectric grease and repair as necessary. Check your brake relay if you have one. For a free wiring diagram please visit the website below and good luck: Harley Davidson Wiring Diagrams and Schematics
I'd check the battery first. I've seen the post break loose from the batteries in many Sportsters and leave them dead on the road. I've only seen this happen once on a Big Twin. Why? I have no idea. If nothing on the bike works, this may be the problem. If everything else works but it just won't start, I need more information. Does the starter engage and the engine turn over?
If you have two wires that go to the turn signal and they don't work one way. You could try them switched around.
This is for a turn signal that is NOT also a running light. (Yellow Lens to Rear)
Use a test light and turn on the turn signal test both wires with the test light clipped to the ground or chassis of the bike. The wire that causes the light to blink will be the positive or hot side. That wire should attach to the bottom of the bulb.
The other wire is the Ground or common and that should attach to the side of the bulb holder.
To begin with, I'd have that battery load tested to see if it's any good. I've seen brand new batteries that were bad. It it checks OK, check all the connections that go to the battery. Be especially attentive to the smaller wires that attach to it. I've seen battery acid eat the wire out of the insulation leaving the insulation intact and the wire appeared fine. If the wire bends too easily, be suspect. If the wires have the "crimp on" connectors, make sure they're tight. Your problem sounds like a bad connection somewhere.
You have two brake light switches, one for the rear brake and one for the front brake. If neither switch turns the brake light on, the first thing to check is the bulb. If the bulb is good, check the socket and the wiring to it.
If all that is good, find the rear brake master cylinder. Follow the metal tube coming out of it going to the rear brake. Underneath the bike, there is a pressure switch that turns on the rear brake light. Check to make sure the wires are connected and that one set of wires is "hot" when the ignition switch is in the "ON" position. If so, the switch is probably bad. Replace the switch. I have seen them check good with a meter but still not turn on the brake light. Work with the rear brake light switch first as it's the easiest and least expensive to fix. When you get that working, repost and I'll take you through replacing the front brake light switch. It's quite a bit more difficult to replace than the rear switch. I'm sure that procedure is in the archives as well because I've posted it a number of times.
yes, there is a common connection. Find the rear master cylinder and the brake line that comes out of it running towards the rear of the bike. Along this line, you'll find a pressure switch. This is the rear brake light switch. It has two blades on it that usually have two wires one each connector. One of the connectors is supposed to be "hot" when the ignition is turned on. This supplies the power for both the front and rear lights. Jumpering across the two terminals at that switch should turn the brake light on. Test it with a test light.
Let's see what we have here,
Battery is hot
fuel gauge and light hot
What we don't have
no accessory lights and the starter won't turn the engine over.
I'm sorry but I don't have a schematic for your bike to refer to but usually Harley puts instruments, lights, ignition, and accessories on separate fuses or breakers. Sounds like you've blown the accessories fuse as I think this one controls power to the starter relay. I think your fuses are behind the electrical panel on the left side of the bike.