Electrical HELP


Information and questions on GL1100 Goldwings (1980-1983)
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tallman21
Posts: 227
Joined: Tue Feb 15, 2011 8:09 pm
Location: Rahway, New Jersey
Motorcycle: 1980 GL1100i

Electrical HELP

Postby tallman21 » Tue Jun 14, 2011 11:45 am



Ok so. I have been fighting with a short somewhere in my electrical system that keeps blowing my fuse to my tail lamp. Its weird tho... For example. Today I spent an hour going through all of the wires that travel under the seat to the lamp. there were a few open spots that I taped over. I replaced the fuse and started the bike. The lamp work and I wiggled the wires around a bunch to see if it would short and it didnt. I put the seat on, sat on it and bounced up and down some and it still didnt blow. I also reved the engine a few times and it still was fine. Sooo thinking i was all set i got my gear on and took off. 2 min down the road I stopped to visit a friend and the fuse had blown again..

What is going on?!?! Does the wires to the tail lamp cross up into the dash area also? Would it be good to run a whole new wire back?? i just have no idea.



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virgilmobile
Posts: 7649
Joined: Sun Sep 19, 2010 5:39 pm
Location: Denham Springs,La.
Motorcycle: 1988 GL1500 I
Previously owned
78 GL1000
81 GL1100
82 GL1100 I
83 GL1100 I
83 GL1100 standard
84 GL 1200 I

Re: Electrical HELP

Postby virgilmobile » Tue Jun 14, 2011 2:15 pm

Don't just cut wires,it may not be a problem.It can be the socket.
A couple of questions come to mind.
1.Exactly what lights go out?Include any add on lighting,front marker,etc.
2.what does the fuse look like when it's blown?Vaporized ,burnt black or just broken in the middle.
3.What's the fuse number.
If the fuse is vaporized,it's a dead short near the fuse block(2')
If it's just popped then it may just be an overload.
now considering the length of wire from the fuse to the tail light,a short in the socket would just pop a fuse.A short near the fuse will burn it bad.
If you added extra lighting,the circuit may be just overloading the fuse.If you can,measure the current draw and fuse at 125%. eg.bike running,circuit draws 12.5amp..X125% = 15 amp fuse.
Harbor freight has a digital amp meter for $10. that can be adapted to a glass fuse holder somehow.

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tallman21
Posts: 227
Joined: Tue Feb 15, 2011 8:09 pm
Location: Rahway, New Jersey
Motorcycle: 1980 GL1100i

Re: Electrical HELP

Postby tallman21 » Tue Jun 14, 2011 2:41 pm

The fuse looks like it just broke in the middle. The tips are a little black inside. Its also a 5 amp fuse. The only lights that go out are the 2 tail lights. If i apply the brakes then the lights turn on but once i let go of the brake the lights turn back off instead of just dimming. I wasnt able to check wiith a volt meter or anything yet but hopefully tommorow. If i dont freak out first

DragonRider
Posts: 136
Joined: Thu May 19, 2011 11:11 am
Location: Ocala, FL
Motorcycle: 1982 and 1983 GL1100 Aspencades

Re: Electrical HELP

Postby DragonRider » Tue Jun 14, 2011 3:11 pm

Let me see if I understand the Taillight burns the fuse out and the brake light works fine.. Fist I would change out both bulbs, and use a touch od dialetric grease on each bulb, While the bulbs are out of socket look for any rust or dirt in or near the sockets.
How many fuses have you gone thru? Check carefully that you have the correct size fuse.
Green wire on GL1100's are ground wires and unless you are the original owner I suggest checking these carefully for damage and splices. the tail light wire should be brown. Has there ever been a trailer hitch installed? If yes someone may have spliced wires in for the trailer and tucked them under the license plate.

I have found problem on mine under the taillight behind the license plate, the wire had been rubbing the metal and finally wore thru just a touch and would ground out every now and then. Carefully pull out all wires and reinspect, in areas where you suspect rubbing carefully wrap wire in electrical tape. if wire feels old and brittle you may want to replace the whole length, use the same color or you will pay for it later.

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tallman21
Posts: 227
Joined: Tue Feb 15, 2011 8:09 pm
Location: Rahway, New Jersey
Motorcycle: 1980 GL1100i

Re: Electrical HELP

Postby tallman21 » Tue Jun 14, 2011 3:31 pm

I checked all of the areas i thought they would chafe and there didnt seem to be any problem. It does look like the guy before me spliced some of the wires under the seat but i closed them off. Maybe they were supposed to interconnect with each other. Im not sure. Not sure why the bulbs would need to be replaced. They work fine? neither one is out

DragonRider
Posts: 136
Joined: Thu May 19, 2011 11:11 am
Location: Ocala, FL
Motorcycle: 1982 and 1983 GL1100 Aspencades

Re: Electrical HELP

Postby DragonRider » Tue Jun 14, 2011 3:37 pm

You could have a problem inside a bulb, it is very very rare but it does happen. I would have to take mine apart to see where wires run but dont recall them joining up anywhere.

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tallman21
Posts: 227
Joined: Tue Feb 15, 2011 8:09 pm
Location: Rahway, New Jersey
Motorcycle: 1980 GL1100i

Re: Electrical HELP

Postby tallman21 » Tue Jun 14, 2011 3:45 pm

i was looking at the wiring instruction sheet in my manual and they do cross over adn connect at some point. gotta find taht tho on the bike.

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virgilmobile
Posts: 7649
Joined: Sun Sep 19, 2010 5:39 pm
Location: Denham Springs,La.
Motorcycle: 1988 GL1500 I
Previously owned
78 GL1000
81 GL1100
82 GL1100 I
83 GL1100 I
83 GL1100 standard
84 GL 1200 I

Re: Electrical HELP

Postby virgilmobile » Tue Jun 14, 2011 4:01 pm

Ok , lets get the terminology the same.
the 80 gl1100 has a tail light.

It has 2 lamps in it.
each lamp has 2 filaments,one is a low level running light and one bright brake light.
each circuit has it's own 5 amp fuse.
Now.which one doesn't work?
A mildly blown fuse indicates a near short(corroded,chafed.broken filament,etc) far from the fuse.

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tallman21
Posts: 227
Joined: Tue Feb 15, 2011 8:09 pm
Location: Rahway, New Jersey
Motorcycle: 1980 GL1100i

Re: Electrical HELP

Postby tallman21 » Tue Jun 14, 2011 5:14 pm

The running lamp fuse is the one that keeps blowing

User avatar
virgilmobile
Posts: 7649
Joined: Sun Sep 19, 2010 5:39 pm
Location: Denham Springs,La.
Motorcycle: 1988 GL1500 I
Previously owned
78 GL1000
81 GL1100
82 GL1100 I
83 GL1100 I
83 GL1100 standard
84 GL 1200 I

Re: Electrical HELP

Postby virgilmobile » Wed Jun 15, 2011 3:44 pm

Now it's clear as mud, :D .Here's a schematic.The brown wire goes in the harness and ends near the shock mount in a bundle.look for the brown connector,it will have 2 matching plugs that go to the tail lamp housing.Unplug both wires,this will kill power to the tail light running(parking)light.See if it still blows the fuse.If it does,the short is elsewhere.The schematic shows a continuation of the parking(brown) wire that's optional.It may be in the bundle behind the fork weight.
If the fuse doesn't blow,the short is in the tail light housing or wiring to it.
It appears the extra wire up front is there for some ad on lighting.Other than that,the ONLY thing that 5 amp fuse is for is to run through the key switch and goes directly to the park lamp.
If you can absolutely can't find a short,the next step is to use a external fuse holder,remove the blown fuse,attach the new fuse holder to the switched hot terminal,run the wire to the rear,unhook both lights and hook them to the new wire and re-test. This will completely bypass the vehicle harness,other than the piece that goes into the housing.
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tallman21
Posts: 227
Joined: Tue Feb 15, 2011 8:09 pm
Location: Rahway, New Jersey
Motorcycle: 1980 GL1100i

Re: Electrical HELP

Postby tallman21 » Wed Jun 15, 2011 3:56 pm

Perfect!! I tore the bike apart today and taped each part of tue wires that ingered through a port on the bike. This seems to have done it... Ive been riding around all day and the fuse hasnt blown yet!




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