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Hi all, I'm brand new here and hoping for some helpful advice. I've been riding three years and have very limited electrical ability (but am reading lots and very slowly learning how to narrow down and diagnose issues).

My CB400ti's headlights will not work at all. Everything else has power and works fine aside from the highbeam indicator light in the dash. I have read a lot of forums that indicated that the starter button is a common cause (as the starter button kills the headlight when the starter is engaged) so I jiggled the wires on the right-hand controls and the headlight came back on - momentarily.

Naturally, I assumed that everybody else was correct and the starter button was the culprit. I removed the starter/kill switch entirely and continuity tested every combination (button depressed and not depressed, kill switch on and off), disassembled the button and cleaned all the contacts, etc. It has continuity in every possible combination. I put everything back together and back on the bike, but still no headlights or highbeam indicator dash light.

Am I correct in assuming the starter button/kill switch is absolutely 100% not the problem (because it has continuity in every scenario)? I've tested all fuses and the headlight itself. All are good. I'm stuck as to how to narrow this down.

Please bear in mind that I'm new to electrical issues and very limited in multimeter diagnosis. I'll understand better if you explain it to me as if I were a 5 year old.

Thanks in advance, folks!

-Jason
 

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If you didn't find anything wrong with the switch then it's probably one of the wires you jiggled. All of the strands (but one) are broken, barely touching, whatever.

You can continue jiggling till you figure out WHICH one is broken inside the insulation, OR

Make yerself a big long alligator clip (4-5 feet long)

And use it as "detour wiring"

One at a time "detour" around every wire going to this switch, from the switch to wherever the actual wire goes.

When your headlight lights up, you've found the wire broken inside the insulation.

You could also VOLTAGE DROP the whole thing, but thats a little advanced for a guy new with a meter, etc.

Good luck and sorry for the delay in responding.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Fixed!

Thanks so much for the reply, and no worries, you were actually pretty quick!

I found the problem... at least it seems like it since it's still working after a half an hour ride.
It turns out it was my own fault. At the end of the last season, I replaced the ignition switch because the contacts were failing. I replaced it with an identical one however when I did, I noticed that there was an extra wire custom spliced into one of the old wires. I clipped it and didn't know what to do with it (as I knew even less about electrical back then) so I left it dangling, plugged in the new ignition switch and tested all of the lights, etc. and everything worked fine. Moving forward to this season, the light worked just fine at idle but wouldn't after a very short ride. Checked the fuses and turned out I had blown the 7A fuse that is on the right hand and left hand controls. Replaced with a good one and the same thing happened again. I noticed this morning that the fuse was blown again, so I suspected that that custom spliced wire (left dangling) was somehow causing the headlight to stop working via the dimmer switch. I spliced the same wire back into the same spot on the new ignition switch and now everything seems to be working perfectly fine! Lesson learned... this is why I spent all winter reading up on electronics, I hate being so green at it. Hopefully no more stupid mistakes!

Thanks so much for your help!

-Jason
 
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