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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The brake lights on my wife's '32 Trike won't turn off. I have replaced the rear brake light pressure switch and this did not help. I have loosended up the two halfs of the front brake mechanism and have manually worked the plunger with a screwdriver and this does not even cause the lights to flicker.

Has anyone seen this before? What am I missing? I am thinking that I should replace the plunger switch entirely at the front brake. I'm assuming this is just a standard Harley part. Any other ideas?


Bill
 

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Bill,

Have you tried to isolate which switch is bad by disconnecting one of them?? I think if it's stuck on, it is usually the front one, rear usually goes bad and won't activate it.

Wag had that problem and fought it for quite a while, don't remember exactly what he did to finally get it to work right. I know that even the way it is tightened on the bars will get it oout of adjustment or if you torque it too tight. Good luck.

Tim
 

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Brake Lights

Bill,

The problem most likely is the taillight integration unit used on the Trikes.

The Trike uses the two wheel wiring harness. The two wheeler has separate rear turn signals and brake light. So...the Trike needs an integration unit to combine the two functions into a single taillight. This is exactly the same problem you face when hooking up a trailer with a combined turn and brake light to a modern automobile with separate turn signals (amber) and brake lights (red).

Both my unit and Capt Bob's failed early on. The factory replacement also failed in short order.

So...the solution depends on the type of taillight you are using. If you are running the early model taillights with incadescent bulbs, a trip to the auto supply store will yield a replacement integration unit for about $12.

Bob and I are running halogen bulbs in our lights and, due to the higher current draw, the standard units would not last. So, I designed and built a relay based unit which we have both been using for over a year with no further problems.

I think Tim Siron has relay based units for sale that work with both the old style taillights as well as the new LED taillights.
 

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I am having this same problem right now. I disconnected the hydraulic switch and the light still stayed on. A chopper guy who is near here told me that he suspects that it has to do with the front controls sliding down the handlebar away from the stop. I have messed with this but no luck so far. I may take them completely off and put them back together again with new screws.

Any ideas on mine Neil???


Hoss


P.S. Bill, how is your dad doing these days???
 

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HOSSMANs Front brake switch

HOSSMAN,
I may be able to help on this one. After accessing the switch, where you can push in the microswitch with a small device, if the system works, do this. Find a rubber cover, like would fit over a brake bleed nipple, and slide it over the metal tab that is supposed to push the microswitch open. carefully reassemble. That keeps the tab from misaligning, and makes up some space for wear. Someone @ Boss Hoss factory shared that with me last April, and mine hasn't malfunctioned since (staying on). Hope that helps.
HAWK88
Jack Phillips
 

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I had the same problem on my bike when it was new from the factory. The hand controls are by Harley Davidson and is a common problem with HD. We loosened the brake controls and slid them up as far as possible on the handlebar as possible, and that fixed it. It happened to my old Heritage one time as well. Good Luck.
 

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You guys are correct. The front one is usually the one to give your grief (at least on the 2 wheelers). I have had 2 rear switches go over the years and had to replace the front one once. Be carefull when taking the halves apart on the handlebar or you will find yourself soldering the connection on your brake switch. BTW they not only slide down but if the switch housing twists slightly it will do the same.
Glenn
 

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Brake Light Switch

Hoss,

Sorry to be so long responding. You probably have it fixed by now.

It is a fairly simple process to take the two screws out of the throttle, handlebar control and separate the two halves. You can then see the brake light switch. It has a torpedo head. You should be able to depress that torpedo shaped button and see if the light goes off. If so, most likely just an adjustment is needed to fix. However, I know from personal experience that if you are not careful when you reassemble the two halves on the handlebar you can break off the end of the torpedo button when you tighten the screws holding the two halves together. If this has occurred, you will need to replace the switch.

Also, it is possible (but not likely) that the switch has actually failed and is permanently "closed". You can diagnose this by unsoldering one of the wires attached to the switch. Turn on the key and if the light is off the switch is defective and needs to be replaced.

If the light remains on with both swiches (front and back) disconnected, you have a short in the wiring.
Good luck,
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks to all for the help on this problem. I went and bought a new module and was ready to replace it and decided to take a closer look at the front brake plunger mechanism first.

I depressed the plunger switch, removed it from the housing and was ready to unsolder one of the wires to see if that turned the brake lights off and I noticed that there was a small amount of solder that was lodged between the two wires at the contact area of the switch. Problem fixed!

Thanks again to all for the responses and help on this one.

Bill
 

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I messed around with my brake switch the other day for a couple hours and couldn't make it work. The lights also wouldn't go out when I pushed the nipple in manually. I also found that I couldn't get the two halve of the control to fit together tightly. I took it to a chopper shop and a mech looked at it for me. We discovered that the lever that pushes against the nipple was bent out and that the nipple had been rubbed and scratched on the top. The switch was bad and needs to be replaced. Levi is sending me one and I should get it in a couple of days. I think that I must have screwed it up when I took the control apart to put a new throttle cable in a month or two ago when I had all the problems with my bike. I must have put it back together poorly and caused all these problems.

Another lesson learned.

Thanks again for your help everyone.


Hoss
 
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