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Hey guys. Here to post my first of many fixes I've done over three great years with my first Triumph. This is what I'm working on today.

My bike stalled in a slow left turn the other night. Weird. I cranked it back up and then the lights blinked on and off twice before it died again. As I pulled up on the sidewalk and reached under the ignition and wiggled the wires the dash lights blinked on and off. Yay!

The next day I brought out my tools and took the ignition apart. There's another thread on this already and if you're unlucky you've got a bit of work ahead of you, removing the top fork clamp to get at the back of the ignition.

If, like mine, you've simply broken one of the solder points in the switch, you WON'T need grind off the shear (security) bolts and remove the whole assembly. You WILL have to remove the wire and plate to properly hold and solder this difficult point. I spent 3+ hours trying to do it while it was hanging off the bike and it's very difficulty, so go ahead and take it off the bike. So, here's the step by step that will save you $150+ on a new ignition assembly.

1) remove the cockpit so you can unplug the ignition switch. Follow the cable back from the ignition and unplug it (above right headlight)

2) Remove the top clamp so you can access the back of the ignition.
- I was very lucky. My switch had been worked on before, so there were torx screws instead of shear (security) bolts holding the ignition switch on. They were also loose, so I was able to slip a bit in there and take the bolts out with my fingers.

3) take the black cap off the back of the ignition wire harness and slide it down the sheath. If your break is like mine, you should NOT HAVE TO GRIND THE IGNITION ASSEMBLY OFF THE CLAMP.

4) This is where I tried to solder it on the bike, however, the plastic housing makes this next to impossible. You've got to get another set of hands and pop out the white plastic plate that all the wires are soldered to (and where my wire break, and probably yours, is). It will take skill alone, or three hands to gently pry the black housing open while you push the white plastic plate notches up and out (see pics)

5) now you should be able to get this wire assembly off the bike. Be careful not to overheat the pot in the plastic plate. Another guy melted the plastic and the pushed the pot through. I fought with my wire quite a bit. The hole in the plastic plate is tiny and your wire will be fat with solder and bigger than the original, fresh wire end. I considered splicing in a new wire but in the end i trimmed down the end of the wire. Not the ideal method, but I was tired of fighting with it.

6) note the wire orientation when you put the plate with the fresh solder back in the ignition housing.

Now I'm wondering if it was reinstalled improperly from a previous lock replacement. The stressor in the area is the clutch cable, which seems like it should be BEHIND the ignition wiring, not in FRONT, as it has been on my bike for years. When I turned my fork left and right it looked like the clutch cable had been pressing really hard on the wire harness, as compared to when I experimented with putting the ignition cable in front of the clutch cable.

Hope this helps someone out!
 

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Anyone that takes the time to make a writeup like this is to be thanked! :thumb

I have the same bike and it has the 08" "bars" on it, the clutch cable has always seemed like it isn't exactly routed right IMHO. Don't know if the stock one was like that too as when I got the bike it was already modified.

I've tried rerouting it when I added the faux pazzo's to no success though the routing issue seems to be more so at the perch than at the switch (comes out at a bit of an odd angle to me).
 

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THANK YOU! I had a sudden failure on my 2002 Sprint ST. Diagnostics led me to the ignition switch. With your help, I was able to get it out and solder the white wire back. Took longer to take apart than affect the repair because of your help.
 

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Good post! There are several threads on the topic, including a couple by yours truly.

I think the original configuration of the wiring, at least in the ST's (maybe not the RS's), was a small ziptie cinched tight around the wire bundle and carcass inside the bottom of the switch housing, to keep the vinyl carcass from pulling out of the housing. This is part of the strain relief scheme, to help protect the wire connections at the terminations.

Then, the bundle was immediately looped to the left and ziptied to the side of the switch housing. While that arrangement looks rather goofy, it gets the wiring away from the clutch cable. From there, the harness proceeds forward and under the left side of the fairing, where it is again ziptied to the nose fairing stay.

Last time I went through the whole affair, I found a used switch with a broken lock on eBay, and swapped out the bottom end. I had an electronics guru friend of mine pull the pins out of the plug and remove the age-hardened vinyl carcass and replace it with new vinyl mesh 'snakeskin' and then reassemble the whole thing. Much more better!
 

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Sorry to bring back a super old post. But does anyone know the color code to the wires for the ignition? I have a universal im trying to hook up because mine took a crap. Need the bike since its my daily to work. Thank you in advance.
 

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@Biland955i - you have to recognize that as a new member with essentially no posting history, that is not information that would be freely given out, especially with no information on your profile

I'm sure you are an honorable person, but the membership has no way of knowing that.

Complete your profile, give more information about yourself, including your location and maybe even a picture of your bike and members will feel more comfortable.

As for you original failure, if you review the opening post in this thread, yours almost certainly has the same issue, if a regular electrical failure and possibly repairable (unless the lock itself is what is broken)
 

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@DEcosse I added a picture. I got a universal ignition wired up bike ran great. We taped the wires up and now runs like crap. Wont go over 5k and sounds like running on 2 cylinders
 

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Picking up on this old, but very helpful, thread as I need to disassemble the ignition switch on my 02 Sprint RS to see what's up (ignition doesn't 'engage' unless the key is slightly rotated counter clockwise, out of the detente, where it won't stay ... guessing it's the infamous white wire bugger, but the weird thing with the key rotation has me confused.

Update: I just pulled of the cap at the bottom the ignition to check the wires and soldered bits. It looks good - no broken wires or soldered connections.

So back to the key rotation issue. Does anyone have insight about the cause of this? Is it the lock?

Thanks for the help.
 

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I've not been into the ignition on these bikes, but my experience on others suggests the switch itself. The way I've always seen them work is the bottom of the key barrel turns a 'plate' with contacts on that line up with connections inside the switch body. I've had them apart a few times over the years on other bikes & they've normally just needed cleaning as a the crud in the lock ends up there.
 

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I've not been into the ignition on these bikes, but my experience on others suggests the switch itself. The way I've always seen them work is the bottom of the key barrel turns a 'plate' with contacts on that line up with connections inside the switch body. I've had them apart a few times over the years on other bikes & they've normally just needed cleaning as a the crud in the lock ends up there.
Thanks for the response, Hooli. I'm a little anxious about opening up the switch without damaging the plastic shroud. On the other hand, if I don't dig in nothing will be solved. ;)

The parts seem to fit together pretty tightly, with little dirt getting in, judging from the looks of the soldered connections at the bottom of the unit. I'm surprised that the connections look so good, actually ... given that the bike was knocked over twice due to the front wheel being struck by passing traffic (lousy NYC drivers! :mad:), breaking the ignition mounting bolts.
 

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I think I fixed the problem. I took apart the switch (cracking the plastic shroud - maybe some heat would have prevented this?), learning how it works in the process. I discovered that it's two ball bearings that rotate in a plastic cup with divots in it. One ball bearing has lost its chrome plating (affecting movement?) and the divots in the cup were a little dirty. I cleaned both and put some grease on them. I also cleaned the electrical contacts and put some dielectric grease on them. It took two attempts to reassemble the switch so that 'on' was in the correct key position, but I got it zipped up and working. I'll take it for a test later today.
 

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Yup looks just like inside the Suzuki ones I've done, the ones I opened appeared to have a pond inside as the contacts where covered in a sludge exactly like you find in the bottom of a fishpond.
 

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Yup looks just like inside the Suzuki ones I've done, the ones I opened appeared to have a pond inside as the contacts where covered in a sludge exactly like you find in the bottom of a fishpond.
This one really wasn't too bad, but bad enough that turning the bike on (igniting it? ;) ) was a problem.
 
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Glad you got it sorted, and interesting to see the inside of the ignition switch too :) It's probably too late now but if you can get that corroded ball out you can get a replacement off ebay or similar. I've done the same for the ball in the indicator switch in the past.
 

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Glad you got it sorted, and interesting to see the inside of the ignition switch too :) It's probably too late now but if you can get that corroded ball out you can get a replacement off ebay or similar. I've done the same for the ball in the indicator switch in the past.
I thought about putting in a replacement, but it occurred to me that the ball doesn't roll around much, if at all. To get it out the copper piece would have to be bent and I thought maybe I'd bungle it - not worth it.
I got out for a city ride yesterday and I found a new-to-me pocket in a neighborhood I thought I knew well. Lots of stops to check out this and that ... the ignition worked just fine. 🤙
 

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Hi all! Wow, this is a great thread.

I have a new-to-me 2001 Tiger 955i, purchased last year.

I've found that my tail lights have stopped functioning recently. It may have happened after a driveway drop - just not sure. Flashers, brake, and headlights function just fine. Strangely, the tail lights do function normally when the key is set to the "position" light setting . . .

I traced continuity between the tail light socket to the fuse (Fuse #10). The 5A fuse was good. Then, traced continuity from the fuse to the ignition switch plug. All good.

With the ignition switch disconnected from the bike, I noted that there is no continuity between the main power (#1, solid white) and tail light / position light (#3, red). However, when the key is turned to the "position" light setting, continuity is present (as it should be). Shouldn't #1 and #3 be electrically connected when the key is set to the ignition position???

I noted that the ignition switch was factory sealed - had not been previously monkeyed with. I took it apart per the excellent instructions above (thanks so much!!!!). All wires are in place, and there is no corrosion anywhere.

What the heck is going on? Thanks in advance for any support!
 

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OK. So I guess the front position lights and plate light suffer the same issue. The wiring seems pretty simple as it's directly connected to the key ignition switch. The key ignition switch contact is for position light only (rear and front). So there is a slight chance the cause is inside the switch. The wires are yellow on a 2005 1050 sprint. You may test that by connecting the wire (switch side) to the battery + and see whether the tail light goes on.

The ground is shared by all the rear lights including indicators and brake.
 
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