not starting and tail light not working

Information and questions on GL1000 Goldwings (1975-1979)
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Posts: 1
Joined: Tue Jul 23, 2013 7:04 am
Location: kansas city, mo
Motorcycle: 77 gl1000

not starting and tail light not working

Postby dotinie » Tue Jul 23, 2013 7:53 am

Ok i have a 77 gl1000. so I have had some problems with it starting for a while. I am pretty sure its dirty in the cut off switch. But the other problem is no tail light. It was working just fine but it was burning fuses like crazy and it melted the fuse box. I replaced the fuse box and it still burned fuses so I took the tail light off and found frayed ground wire where the wire harness goes under the fender. I fixed the wire but I checked and no power is getting to the connection wire under the seat but I have power to the brake light.

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Posts: 397
Joined: Mon Oct 01, 2012 9:51 pm
Location: Portersville, Pennsylvania
Motorcycle: 1977 GL1000
1980 KZ750 LTD
2007 H-D XL1200C

Re: not starting and tail light not working

Postby wjnfirearms » Tue Jul 23, 2013 8:42 am

Electrical issues can be frustrating.

What you need to do is to back trace the offending wire to the source in either the harness or the fuse box. Often, the issue is in a plug in connector. It could also be a broken wire which can not necessarily look broken at a glance. If you found a shorted wire that was bad enough to cause a lot of resistance that melted the fuse box, it is prudent to replace the entire run of wire starting at the tail light and running completely to it's termination. The extreme heat that traveled through the wire likely damaged the wiring elsewhere than just at the box.

Something to remember. When one replaces damaged primary wiring, make sure to use at least the same gauge wire that is being replaced. If you go up in gauge size, no problem. Don't go smaller, ever. Also, if there are connectors in the bad circuit, replace them also as they can suffer a similar fate the wire did. Try to use solid sections of wire and limit splices. They can increase resistance. If you do have to splice sections for whatever reason, the preferred way is to solder them. The solder joint must be a "hot" joint with plenty of flux and the solder needs to have flowed well into the joint. If you cannot do this, use weatherproof butt connectors and make sure your crimps are tight and sealed.
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Fred Camper
Posts: 1140
Joined: Sun Aug 16, 2009 9:15 pm
Location: Metro Detroit, MI
Motorcycle: 1977 GL1000, 1976 LTD GL1000

Re: not starting and tail light not working

Postby Fred Camper » Tue Jul 23, 2013 10:39 am

I suggest bypassing the Reserve Lighting Unit
(RLU) as that speeds trouble shooting and the RLU often goes bad. They were eliminated on later bikes. There are available links for the toads wires. Easily done. Many of us keep the bypass on all the time.

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