high/low beam switch problems


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wyly
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high/low beam switch problems

Post by wyly »

I'm stumped by the sudden failure of my high/low switch I've dissembled it and can find nothing wrong. It's the first time it's been opened up since it left the factory.

I have either low or high when I switch between them and sometimes neither. It will works when disassembled but not when I screw it back in the housing. A friend gave me switch from a cb750 or cb900 and I combined some of the relevant parts and the same issue reoccurs.

I've cleaned the contacts, checked wire continuity all good, a jumper wire to bypass the contacts results in functional high and low. It's really got me stumped.

I could order a new replacement but that's $140 with shipping, a waste of cash when I should be able to make a single functional switch from two units.

I've resorted to soldering the low beam into full time and no high to avoid being stopped by the police but that's not an ideal solution. What am I overlooking?
CBX a work in progress, still improving...GS1150EFE completed and awaiting modifications.....RD350, remnants in boxes scattered throughout the garage

Bill Kemp
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Re: high/low beam switch problems

Post by Bill Kemp »

I don’t mean to sound silly but have you ensured the bulb is working. I had that issue a long time ago on a CB550 thinking it was the switch and it was in fact a faulty bulb that worked on and off on the low beam.

Try switching and putting in another bulb to test it.

Just a thought

Bill

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Re: high/low beam switch problems

Post by jnnngs »

Hi,

The electrical contacts on that switch are difficult to get seated correctly.

They appear to go in, and everything looks ok but they won't make contact. There's a contact with a spring behind it, that needs to be fully pushed into position using a screwdriver or something, then insert the plastic bit that you push forward / back.

I have seen this a few times - has always been that contact not being seated.

Hope this helps!

Paul.

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wyly
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Re: high/low beam switch problems

Post by wyly »

Bill Kemp wrote:
Thu Jun 09, 2022 10:32 pm
I don’t mean to sound silly but have you ensured the bulb is working. I had that issue a long time ago on a CB550 thinking it was the switch and it was in fact a faulty bulb that worked on and off on the low beam.

Try switching and putting in another bulb to test it.

Just a thought

Bill
First thing I tried, took out the expensive led and replaced it with the oem, nope. Replaced the oem with a new bulb same result.
CBX a work in progress, still improving...GS1150EFE completed and awaiting modifications.....RD350, remnants in boxes scattered throughout the garage

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wyly
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Re: high/low beam switch problems

Post by wyly »

jnnngs wrote:
Fri Jun 10, 2022 3:47 am
Hi,

The electrical contacts on that switch are difficult to get seated correctly.

They appear to go in, and everything looks ok but they won't make contact. There's a contact with a spring behind it, that needs to be fully pushed into position using a screwdriver or something, then insert the plastic bit that you push forward / back.

I have seen this a few times - has always been that contact not being seated.

Hope this helps!

Paul.
Yeah that's definitely where the problem lies, I've lost count how many times I've disassembled it. Contacts work fine outside the housing but as soon as I screw it back into position it fails, I'll either have only high or low or nothing at all. The new spring loaded contact is definitely better than mine but again it was the same result. I'll try to gently file half moon shaped contact flat and see if that helps, over 44 years use there's a slight depression in the surface. Maybe I'm expecting too much from a 44yr old bits of plastic and copper. :lol:

I think I'll give it one more days effort then I'll hard wire it into full time low and order a new replica switch.
CBX a work in progress, still improving...GS1150EFE completed and awaiting modifications.....RD350, remnants in boxes scattered throughout the garage

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Re: high/low beam switch problems

Post by daves79x »

Take Paul's advice - don't modify anything - you didn't get it together quite right. These are just about the most fiddly things Honda could have made.

Dave

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Re: high/low beam switch problems

Post by Larry Zimmer »

I've never had mine open. However, if it is anything like the brake switch on an old Suzuki, be certain that the closed end of the little 'U' thing is oriented to slide over the contacts. It may be possible to easily assemble with the open end going to the contacts. (Suzuki did this to me. Took me forever to sort it out.)
Larry Zimmer
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wyly
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Re: high/low beam switch problems

Post by wyly »

daves79x wrote:
Sat Jun 11, 2022 7:23 am
Take Paul's advice - don't modify anything - you didn't get it together quite right. These are just about the most fiddly things Honda could have made.

Dave
:lol:That was an understatement Dave, I understand your dedication to the CBX but it's way, way, way beyond fiddly!

I've been ill for a week and did nothing to the switch when I previously left it still had a functional a low beam, I came back today to no beam at all :? It breaks/malfunctions even when it's not in use. I could fiddle with it forever and not get it to work and even if I did work I've no confidence it won't malfunction again out on the road, there's $172 fine for riding without a light.

Today I took a flat file to the contacts to remove any surface grooves combined that with new(used) spring loaded contact and again had the same result.

Now I'm left with a choice of modify and ride, take a chance on a wonky switch hoping it won't quit mid ride resulting in a$172 fine or not ride until I order a new reproduction switch which is possibly a month off if I order today. If my GS1150 wasn't in the middle of a full rebuild I'd have another riding option but completion of that could be month away.

I've been pulled over by the police for driving with my lights off in my truck at night and was let off with a warning as I was in a very well lit area and hadn't noticed they were off. On a bike where the light may not work at all there will be a fine and if it happens at night they could make me park the bike and arrange to have it towed home at $150-200 plus the $172 fine. A new switch virtually identical to the oem is $140 CDN with shipping.
CBX a work in progress, still improving...GS1150EFE completed and awaiting modifications.....RD350, remnants in boxes scattered throughout the garage

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