Brake light switch question


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Thread: Brake light switch question

  1. #1
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    Brake light switch question

    Does the hand brake switch operate totally independently of the foot brake switch? If the foot brake switch is disconnected should the hand brake switch work properly anyway? I dumped the bike stopping quickly the other day, and the crash bars and saddle back fortunately saved the painted parts, but the crash bars were bent back a little. I noticed when I got home that the brake lights were on constantly, so I started fiddling with the foot brake switch with a screwdriver pushing and pulling the little metal prong in and out gently. I got them to shut off finally, and then the hand brake switch seemed to be operating properly. I couldn't get the foot brake switch to work at all after that, and looks like I'll have to replace that. It's disconnected now, but now the hand brake switch isn't working at all. I think the brake lights are on again and won't shut off. Replace both switches? Check a fuse? Whaddaya think?

  2. #2
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    The brake light switches are totally independent. Either will turn on the brake light. If the light is on, it is most likely the foot switch. I believe there is a connector right at the switch. Unplug it. Won't effect the hand switch.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Old Fool View Post
    The brake light switches are totally independent. Either will turn on the brake light. If the light is on, it is most likely the foot switch. I believe there is a connector right at the switch. Unplug it. Won't effect the hand switch.
    The actual connector to the foot brake switch is up underneath the gas tank. (The manual says to start by taking the gas tank off----right.) Anyway, I had taken the switch apart right at the switch, and made sure the contact points were open. That way I figured the hand switch would work but it still didn't because I think the brake lights (I have the triple whammy set-up) just stayed on the whole time, which doesn't make sense to me unless there is a short now in the rear brake switch wiring harness that wasn't there before, or unless the hand switch all of a sudden for no apparent reason went bad and is causing the lights to be on all the time. I forget how to use an ohm meter or a voltage meter to check across the brass prongs inside the foot brake switch to see if there is a short in the wiring harness. Any of you savvy folk out there remind me? Thanks a bunch. By the way, I'm up at 3:30 AM today because my ribs hurt so bad I couldn't sleep any more. So...keep plenty of distance between you and the person in front of you so you have time to safely stop in an emergency!!!

    By the way, in case anyone wants to know what the inside of that foot brake light switch looks like and how it works:

    Last night I wound up taking the foot brake switch apart. The way the switch works is that the spring connects to a plastic cylindrical piston of sorts inside the guts of the switch. There is about a 4mm wide band of brass wrapped around the cylinder, and there are two brass blades coming from the wiring harness side that ride along opposite sides of the cylinder. When the brake light is off, the two brass blades are resting against a plastic portion of the cylinder, so that there is no electrical contact being made. When you depress the brake pedal it pulls the plastic cylinder enough so that the brass blades now make contact with the brass band, thus making an electrical connection. If you keep pulling on that piston, though, by additional brake pedal travel, the two brass blades will slide off the back end of the brass band on the piston, will again rest on a plastic part of the cylinder and will therefore have broken the electrical contact again. I think there must be some sort of rubber piece or safeguard inside the switch to keep that from happening, but I couldn't find it. Anyway, looks like it's new switch time for me. Oh boy.

  4. #4
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    If I remember right there is an adjustment on the outside of the brake pedal switch.

    Donut

  5. #5
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    Help!!!!

    This is very frustrating. I locked up the rear wheel during a hard brake and dumped the bike on Sunday. Drove it home. Checked it out. I had to fiddle with the foot brake light switch a little to sort of get it to turn the brake lights on and off (I have the Kury Triple Whammy set-up). I checked the hand brake switch and that was working OK. Then I went back to the foot switch and tried to adjust it so that it worked properly but then it just seemed to stop working altogether. At that point, I couldn't tell if all the brake lights were on or off (i.e. judging by the intensity of the lights). Then the hand switch didn't seem to work, either. I completely took apart and disconnected the foot brake switch and still the hand brake switch didn't work, the brake lights just seemed to be on (guessing). The turn signals work fine, by the way. So, I replaced the foot switch and tried to get it to turn the brake lights on and off. Again, nothing, they just seemed to be on all the time. I did this with the hand switch both connected and also with it disconnected, in case there was a short in the hand switch keeping them on all the time. Then I replaced the hand switch also. Still, I can't get anything to work. It just seems like the brakes are on all the time no matter what I do. Can anyone help me on this ?!?!?!? I can't take the bike out on the road without the brake lights working and I'm going through withdrawal. Please please help.

  6. #6
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    Brake Light Problem

    This is a long shot guess but here goes. If you hit hard enough could you possibly have damaged the brake/tailight bulb, i.e. one of the filaments breaking and now touching the other filament making it appear that the brake circut is illuminated. Just my uneducated musings. Good luck with it. Glad you halled it in before making contact with the cage. Steve

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Treitel View Post
    This is a long shot guess but here goes. If you hit hard enough could you possibly have damaged the brake/tailight bulb, i.e. one of the filaments breaking and now touching the other filament making it appear that the brake circut is illuminated. Just my uneducated musings. Good luck with it. Glad you halled it in before making contact with the cage. Steve
    Steve- Thanks for the thought. I have the Kury Triple Whammy set-up, so when I hit the brake switch the brake light, plus my turn signal lights in the back, plus the lights on my license plate frame, blink a few times then stay on. When I did the initial fiddling all of the lights worked fine before they all seemed to stop working and stay on. Now I am wondering if what I am seeing is just the running lights all the time (not the brake lights all being on and bright), and neither of the brake switches are working because of a blown fuse. I will have to check that next, but any other ideas are certainly welcome!

    Darn. I am such an idiot. Must be from the head trauma!

    Checked the fuses and one of the 10amp was blown. Replaced it and the brake switches work fine now.

    Just a matter of cleaning and adjusting everything else up now.

    Take care and SAFE RIDING to all.


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