Should I Replace the Neutral Switch

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Rob H
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Should I Replace the Neutral Switch

Postby Rob H » Sat Jul 21, 2018 7:56 am

Have the gearbox off to replace the clutch. The neutral switch is likely the original but still working.

As I understand that these can be troublesome should I replace this as a matter of course with a modern one even though it is working or just leave well alone.

Whats the current consensus on this,

regs
Rob

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Re: Should I Replace the Neutral Switch

Postby boxerman » Sat Jul 21, 2018 8:52 am

If it ain't broke, don't fix it...
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Re: Should I Replace the Neutral Switch

Postby CaptAirhead » Sat Jul 21, 2018 9:25 am

Totally agree with Boxerman on this. No point in trying to anticipate a failure as there are dozens of things on an Airhead that are known to be 'troublesome', you can't go replacing them all, what if the new one fails? Nothing wrong with replacing the odd inexpensive washer or seal etc but I'd draw the line at swapping out a working 20 quid switch 'in case' it fails. I'd rather put the 20 quid in the tank.
Good luck with the clutch swap.
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Bill Smithson
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Re: Should I Replace the Neutral Switch

Postby Bill Smithson » Sat Jul 21, 2018 11:01 am

I'm in the same position - should I change the neutral switch on my 1981 R65LS?

The last time I used the bike the neutral light didn't show in neutral. I'm about to swap the sidestand for the Surefoot stand I've had since last October.

Is there a way to test whether the switch is working (without the engine running) before I buy a new one?

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Rob Frankhamr
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Re: Should I Replace the Neutral Switch

Postby Rob Frankhamr » Sat Jul 21, 2018 11:14 am

I'm in the same position - should I change the neutral switch on my 1981 R65LS?

The last time I used the bike the neutral light didn't show in neutral. I'm about to swap the sidestand for the Surefoot stand I've had since last October.

Is there a way to test whether the switch is working (without the engine running) before I buy a new one?


Yes, very simple.

Remove the wires from the switch. With the ignition on, sort the two connectors together. If the neutral light lights, your switch is toast... if it doesn't, you have to find out why.

Simple as that

Rob
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CaptAirhead
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Re: Should I Replace the Neutral Switch

Postby CaptAirhead » Sat Jul 21, 2018 1:11 pm

I agree with Rob but I did it slightly differently. I checked the circuit first then the switch. With ign on, I removed the feed wire ( Brown/black in my case) and shorted it to earth. The light came on which proved the circuit was OK up to the switch. I replaced that wire then disconnected the other wire ( brown) and shorted the spade connector on the switch to a known good earth using a wee earth test wire that I knocked up. If the light lights up at this point then the switch is OK. In my case, the switch was OK but the connection to earth was bad which was easy to fix with contact cleaner.
The other way to test with ignition off is to connect a multimeter across the two switch terminals with the meter set on Ohms.
ImageBMW R80/7. Testing the Neutral switch. by Ian Beat, on Flickr

Then operate the gear lever and see the change:-

ImageBMW R80/7. Testing the Neutral switch. by Ian Beat, on Flickr

Simples
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bwprice100
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Re: Should I Replace the Neutral Switch

Postby bwprice100 » Sat Jul 21, 2018 3:06 pm

If you leave the neutral switch in place make the necessary improvements to make it easier to remove in the future.

Brian

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Re: Should I Replace the Neutral Switch

Postby Rob H » Mon Jul 23, 2018 11:12 am

If you leave the neutral switch in place make the necessary improvements to make it easier to remove in the future.

Brian

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Which would be?

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Re: Should I Replace the Neutral Switch

Postby Bill Smithson » Mon Jul 23, 2018 11:15 am

I'm in the same position - should I change the neutral switch on my 1981 R65LS?

The last time I used the bike the neutral light didn't show in neutral. I'm about to swap the sidestand for the Surefoot stand I've had since last October.

Is there a way to test whether the switch is working (without the engine running) before I buy a new one?
Thanks for all the replies.
I am not yet able to get down to carry out the tests, but I will post the results when I can.
Regards.

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Re: Should I Replace the Neutral Switch

Postby bwprice100 » Mon Jul 23, 2018 11:18 am

If you leave the neutral switch in place make the necessary improvements to make it easier to remove in the future.

Brian

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Which would be?
Make the tube easier to remove and replace, small chamfers on the ends help a lot. The tube and engine bolt should be coated in copious amounts of anti seize grease.

Easy :)

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1958 R26, (not so many bits now)
1978 R75/7, (a project bike)
1981 R80, (was a TIC)
1995 R1100RT, (speeding ticket the first day I rode it) (Sold)
http://www.eBolt.co.uk
http://www.ToolroomChucks.co.uk


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