Brake light issue..

Discussion in 'Sportster Models' started by Beachbumz327, Dec 27, 2013.

  1. Beachbumz327

    Beachbumz327 Member

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    Hey guys, I have an issue with the brake light staying lit up on my '94 Sportster. I had the throttle cables snap on me while riding about a month ago. I got the parts ordered and did the repair myself,but now my brake light stays on. So, I started to do some investigating to see if I could locate the problem. I can squeeze the brake lever back and forth and the light will sometimes go off and stay off but once I squeeze the lever again I can hear a "click" and then the light is stuck on again, weird. I changed my grips today (Christmas present) and noticed that there is a little knob that sticks out of my control housing that pushes in and out kind of like spring loaded that shuts off my brake light when held in and lights it up once released out. So, after finding that I was putting all back together and seen where the brake lever has a piece that should line up with this knob to hold it pushed in (brake light would be off) and once i squeeze the lever it would let the knob out (which would light it up). but the piece on the lever can be moved up and down about 1/4" like its loose,not sure if it's supposed to be like that.

    Either way, I can't get the 2 to match up with each other and if i were able to the lever part would slip off of the knob and have me back at the same issue. So, is there a type of clip that maybe I have lost or does it sound like something has messed up or broken? I have researched all I know but can't find any diagram that shows me each individual part/piece that I should be seeing. Any help is appreciated cause I don't want to go to dealership and pay an arm and a leg for something this simple.

    Oh and I also must let you know that when I was doing the original fix of my throttle cables, I didn't place a piece of cardboard or anything behind my brake lever when disassembling the control housing. I have read that that should be done to prevent anything breaking...oops.
     
  2. Jack Klarich

    Jack Klarich Expert Member

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  3. Ace59

    Ace59 New Member

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    Your brake switch is broken.
     
  4. tourbox

    tourbox Senior Member

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    The plunger that actuates the brake light switch can rotate as you noticed. It should line up with switch to push it in or let it out. Letting it out turns the brake light on as you stated. It sounds like your plunger needs to be bent slightly to hit the switch properly. Bend the tab on the plunger that hits the switch a little and retry. Trial & error type thing. I've had to do the same thing on my Hard Tail. It has the same front master cylinder. Remember to place the cardboard first before removing lever.
    tourbox
     
  5. 2000classic

    2000classic Active Member

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    It sounds more to me that your brake lite switch may be loose. When you changed the cables, did you come across a piece of folded metal? This would be placed behind the switch to keep it in place. I would look inside the housing to see if the switch is tight.
     
  6. Beachbumz327

    Beachbumz327 Member

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    Ok time for an update. Going from what Tourbox replied..I took the top housing cover off and was able to push the plunger arm on the brake lever down far enough to catch the black knob coming out of the switch, which fixed my problem. But, the only issue Im having now is that after so many squeezes on the brake lever, the plunger eventually works itself back up and pops out from behind the knob thus leaving my light on again. I am constantly having to keep pushing the plunger back behind that knob. So, with that in mind, is there something wrong with my lever?or maybe there is something that's suppose to retain that plunger in a fixed position? I can take pictures if you think it may help better understand the situation..thanks again guys!!
     
  7. tourbox

    tourbox Senior Member

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    You can find a parts break down at Granite State Harley-Davidson Lebanon, NH (603) 448-4664. Look for OEM parts finder, then parts finder by model. I would guess that if the plunger is not returning all the way back to push the switch then your master cylinder needs a rebuild kit. That would be item # 24 for your front brake control in the parts finder. The kit number is 45072-87. I may have an old unit in garage, if so I'll take a close look at it.
    tourbox
     
  8. tourbox

    tourbox Senior Member

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    I found the old master cylinder & lever and took a look see. There is no indent or retention notch for the push rod(plunger). You can remove the lever without removing the switch housing. Remove the cir-clip on the bottom of the lever pivot pin. The push rod end sets in a pin that's in the lever. It, the pin, will fall out of the lever, but no worries. The other end of the push rod goes into the piston of the master cylinder. Just pull it out and note the which end goes into master cylinder, BEND the ear on the push rod back, small amount, towards the switch. Put the push rod back in the master cylinder, put the large round pin back into the lever with the hole towards the push rod end,line up and replace the lever. Put the pivot pin back in. Test a few times for good operation. When you're happy put your cir-clip back on and go for a ride.
    It sounded like from your post all you did was to rotate the tab on the push rod down and didn't bend it. You may not need the rebuild kit or the switch. Sounds like the switch works just fine when actuated.
    tourbox
     
  9. Beachbumz327

    Beachbumz327 Member

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    Ok, thanks Tourbox! I will try to get around to doing just that tomorrow if possible. I don't have a garage to use yet and it's supposed to rain all day tomorrow but I will let you all know what I can find with that info. Thanks again guys, this community is a great resource for sure :newsmile031: