Key Problem and solution

Discussion in 'General Harley Davidson Topic' started by Jonas, Jun 1, 2010.

  1. Jonas

    Jonas Junior Member

    While on trip 700 miles away from home this weekend. One of the guys I was riding with has a Electra Glide (1998?). We stopped for breakfast. Came out he could not get his key in the bike to turn the ignition on. The slot in the key hole was between the lock and unlock positions. Since the key has "key" that fits in this slot, there was no way to get the key in the bike to turn the ignition on. So we were stuck, at least the forks where not locked.

    Our solution was to to file the "key" off of the key. And we were on our way.

    I have no idea how this could have happened, but it did. My theory is the key hole became sloppy over time, the key worn and some weird combination allowed the key to come out between positions.
  2. glider

    glider Veteran Member

    Very common to file the "key" off the barrel keys. Just make sure to turn the lock to the desired position fully when using a key like this to avoid excess heat to the contacts of the switch itself from a poor connection.
  3. Jack Klarich

    Jack Klarich Guest

    Had a similar problem with a 97 FLHT with 500 miles, when the key came out the fork was locked and I was stuck. The MOCO replaced the ignition and paid the tow but I was without my bike for a week
  4. dbinbc

    dbinbc Active Member

    Happened to me with the lock on my tour-pac. We were on the road and when we stopped for the night I discovered I could not get our luggage out because the lock was partly turned. Had I been home I probably would have done something stupid like try to drill the thing out. After some head scratching I took the little file from my nail clippers and filed off the outer 'key'. Problem solved.

    BUBBIE Well-Known Member


    Great idea Glider!!!!!

    Just a thought..... Once the ONE key is filed off then Use the Good normal key until Next Time It Becomes a Problem..

  6. glider

    glider Veteran Member

    Has anyone that has had this problem with the tumblers not aligning with a "normal" key that is not filed off tried to manipulate the tumblers back into the full off position with a pick of some sort? The normal key really shouldn't come out under normal circumstances unless it is in the full off/on position.