Rudy's GL1200 Photo
1200 Ignition Switch Shots last revised April 19 , 2007
Reference pages are not intended to provide full procedural guides. They are merely photos and comments, many submitted by others who have contributed them out of interest in helping others see what might help them in the same situations or if they just have interest in the subject matter. I attempt to regulate what is placed here and may add my own comments but bear in mind these are in no way guaranteed to be tested by me. Think of them as potential, future, Photo Guides under construction for your reference only.
Thanks goes to the contributors who are the reference point for anything listed as submitted by them.
Total loss of all electrical power, on the road, when the key is jiggled, handlebars turned from lock to lock when you apply pressure around the bottom cover and cables. The bottom of the switch feeling warm. General electrical problems, remember this is the main artery to the battery, all circuits run via the ignition switch one way or another.
Note, if the key feels loose (does not click in each position) then it is a problem with the ball bearings that lock each key position) located between the switch base and the contacts. Unfortunately you probably will have to replace the switch
There are two types of switches on the 84 models (late models have the 3 screws, but can still suffer from poor contacts).
One is held together by three plastic clips built into the cover; the other Honda added three screw in addition and two clips.
Above clip type with smooth back
Above modified type with 3 screws
Below modified cover showing the ridge and 3 screw locations
It easy to identify what one is fitted to your bike put you fingers down behind the ignition switch, if it is smooth you have the problem recalled switch if there is a ridge then you have the later version.
The recall is still current, but you have to push the issue or find a really good dealer that cares about customers. (mine donít so if you do post the dealer on the Forum).
Honda recognized the safety hazard and promised to keep the recall till ALL faulty switches have been swapped out, there was no time limit.
The problem lies within the construction of the switch the contacts are spring loaded, and tend to try to force the switch apart, the cover is supposed to hold the whole thing together with a small lip on the center shaft, but the cover applies pressure via the soldered cables on the back of the switch and a tiny movement over the years is enough to cause the problem..
The cover wears loose and the switch halves try to separate causing less pressure on the contacts, arcing, heating and melting of the plastic, you know the rest.
Hence the modification from Honda adding an extra 3 screws to secure the cover and a better bracket to stop the cables pulling on the switch when handle bars are turned to full lock.
But over time even the modified version can go the same way, itís important that the cable is firmly secured to the bracket to avoid strain on the switch.
The switch is tricky but not too difficult to remove, (held on by two 10 mm bolts accessed with a couple of long 3/4 or better still 1/4 extensions and a swivel socket from under the fairing.
When the bolts are out the switch can be pushed downwards and wriggled out, If you remove the right hand glove pocket (4 Phillips screws) then the left cover clips off, and the rubber splash guard can be gently slid f from the two holding pegs you can create plenty of room to get to the plug that connects the ignition loom to the main loom.
There are also a couple of cable ties that have to be removed (note the position and donít forget to install new ones)
One a simple modification to keep the
Switch halves snug is to add a self tapping screw to the center size SS4 x 3/8 (Ace hardware 5 cents).
If you decide to inspect your switch,
Remove the 3 screws (if fitted)
Bend back the cable support tabs or remove the cable tie on 3 screw version
Place the key in the switch turned to ACCS position.
Press the 3 tabs of the cover in with a blunt screwdriver (two on the 3 screw version).
Remove the contact switch assembly from the housing.
The switch can be prized clicks open, watch for small parts.
There are 3 copper contacts and 4 springs
Inside the switch
The two smaller diameter springs fit the long contact and be the same length and the same strength.
The two larger springs should match each other also.
If the contacts are damaged, beyond a general cleanup I understand that you can order just the electrical switch and cables from Honda.
Or if you are really lucky get it swapped out under the recall.
On the left is the modified switch insert, note the two tags at 11 0/clock and 1 o/clock
They do not interchange, the left is the 3 screw version and the right is the original callback version.
One point is before you put the glove pocket and covers back, turn the handle bars to full left and right lock, and make sure that the cables do not interfere or strain and that you have them neatly tied and out of the way.
I hope this has helped, if anyone needs more information or a better explanation or the photos let me know.
Thanks to the members that have contributed information. I have tried to put all the information in one message.
Please feel free to copy and distribute this information.
I have the cable diagram and contact test somewhere buried on my hard drive, as soon as I can find it or someone re-sends it to me I will add it to the message board.