K100 with dead gauges and won't start - K-Bikes.com - Excellence in Motion
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old Jul 5th, 2006, 4:12 pm Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2006
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K100 with dead gauges and won't start

85 K100
I've been riding this bike for about 6 months now. Had a problem once with the start relay hanging. I took it apart and filed the connections and no problems since.

A few days ago, I came out of the gym and the bike had no problem starting. I rode across the parking lot (200m, maybe) cut the engine with the switch and sat there for a few minutes. Then, I went to start the bike and it wouldn't start. It had no gauge power, no gear indicator, no nothing except for the battery light on really bright.

I rolled the bike across the lot to see if it would kick off and it fired right up without a bit of hesitation. But, the starter won't even flicker.
Now, it's on the center stand with the sidestand retracted and I got nothing.

The headlight works, though. And the dash clock does too.
Battery tested @ 12.78 volts when I got it home.

Any ideas?
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old Jul 5th, 2006, 6:17 pm
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read here:

and more info here:


Mike Kelly

Triple M Engineering


Stanley, NC
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old Jul 5th, 2006, 8:14 pm Thread Starter
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Thanks Mike. Fortunately, I'm a moron and won't be worrying about the start circuit anymore because I forgot to do the simplest thing in the world: look at the fuses.

Yep, I had a blown 7.5 amp fuse. Switching out one of the others to that position made the gauges light up instantly.
I'm a moron. :think:

Thanks for the links though, Mike. I'm not out of the woods yet. I still have a fuse blowing gremlin somewhere.

At least I can ride again!
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old Jul 10th, 2006, 11:46 pm Thread Starter
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The plot thickens:

With the fuse blown, I'm getting ghost voltage to the gauges bakcfeeding through the ground, I suppose. The gear indicator will light up for a few seconds while going down the road and seems to get brighter the more revs the engine puts out.
I'm going to clean the starter and some connections and try to find the short.
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old Jul 11th, 2006, 6:18 am
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You need to look hard at the wiring diagrams, these bikes are electrically complex and it's easy for faults starting simple to get worse and damage other things.

You said the gearshift display gets brighter as the revs go up. Is that brighter from dim or brighter from normal brightness? . The gear/clock display is usually illuminated by small bulbs and they could be giving you the early warning signs of an alternator 'out of control'. If you can get lights on, check they aren't changing a lot in brightness from 1.5 to 5 K rpm. Fuses blowing and bulbs blowing are another clue.

You seem to have a more complicated problem than just a fuse blowing. They blow for a reason and you need to find out what that is. Backfeeding to grounds doesn't produce 'ghost voltages' If fuses are removed and voltages are present after the fuse then they must be coming from a part of the circuit that is still supplied. Sometimes this may be the case where electronics need a switched and permanent feed (e.g the clock) and there is a fuse in both lines and there is no load to sink the small current - so hang a bulb on the circuit after you take the fuse out and see if you still have your 'ghost voltages' Multimeters don't lie, but understanding the circuits you connect them to and the reason for the numbers they give is important.

Remember your bike has a very expensive ECU (and other electronics) and serious problems like an out of control alternator or wiring faults can do a lot of damage very quickly.

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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old Aug 25th, 2006, 2:13 pm Thread Starter
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The problem with the wiring turned out to be the right control bundle on the bar (turn, kill, start).
Sometime, the amount of right turns the bike has done has caused the short. Turning the bar to the right will make it go from ok to blown fuse.
I looked at the schematics in the service manual and tried to put two and two together.

The detective work was delayed by a bad injector seal at the fuel rail. It hosed the injector, shorted it, and then filled the electrical line with fuel and burnt about 8 inches of wiring including the 3 and 4 FI plugs. I was running down the interstate at the time and had just enough momentum to coast to the top of the exit ramp.
A little splicing and fixing and a new injector (napa) got the bike running again. All the seals are new. Funny how a 40 cent injector seal can cost you so much money. Much to be said for going over a used K bike when you get it to make sure it was properly maintained. The Clymer manual is worth its weight in gold when my bike has fits.

Rerouting the wiring for the right controls out of the tripletree and ziptying it to the bars did a good job of keeping it from shorting. It kept popping the fuse though until I wound it into an S shape and taped it off. Now, no worries. So, for sure, I have a short there.
Time to either build or buy a new harness for the controls.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old Aug 25th, 2006, 2:26 pm
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Glad you got it fixed.
Your bike must have been one of the few that were outfitted with Lucas wiring harnesses!

Bruce C
'04 K1200RS Capri Blue(totaled)
2008 Triumph Sprint ST
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old Sep 20th, 2006, 2:22 pm Thread Starter
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no kidding, man.
I'm getting it all sorted out, but I do take the K places it was never meant to go. Like dirt roads and such.
Currently, I've had no other hiccups with the bike and have actually enjoyed a couple more MPGs out of it since the injector problems were fixed.
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