Two brake "GO" handshake not working reliably when Vectrix is frosty cold.
I drive my Vectrix back and forth to work most days. When it is under 20F degrees when I leave work at about 10:30 pm the two brake "GO" handshake is not working reliably If it is cold enough to frost. The annoying part is that it never has issues leaving home, just when I want to leave work! Most of the time trying the handshake over and over will get it after five minutes, WD-40 around the brake seems to have no effect. This week however even after playing with it for ten minutes I could not get a GO. Came the next day when it was warmer started just fine. Any ideals on what I need to fix so this does not happen?
I had a similar problem, but WD-40, applied to the wiring connectors, near the switches, but under the rubber covers, solved the problem. (It was necessary to move the covers to expose the wiring connectors-also check to be sure they are tight, as they are cheap "crimp-on" connectors that plug into the switch-SOLDERED connections would very likely be better!) My HONDA motorcycle, with 16 years and over 100,000 miles of use, still has its origional brake light switches, with no problems, and the connections are SOLDERED to the switch.-Sometimes, it is good to look at what works for the competition!---Bob Curry
I had the exact problem a while back. Steve Scott suggested the following:
'Just pull the rubber cover off of the ofending switch and the wires will probably come off with it.
unscrew the switch with a pair of pliers, spray WD40 inside the plunger and work it in and out a few times then re-assemble.'
As it turned out, the problem was as marylandbob described, the spade connector on the rear brake lever had come off completely so was only making intermittent contact. I just re-crimped it back in place and haven't had the problem since.
When the brake lever cable came loose on the Vectux, I figured it was my guardian angel who wobbled them...
During my investigations as to why the bike would not boot, I witnessed the side stand spring retaining pin drop out! It would certainly have fallen out during riding shortly thereafter, had I not wobbled the side stand to find out if maybe that sensor was to blame for the boot failure.
Pinching the brake sensor connectors together just a touch with a pocket-multi-tool fixed it. The whole thing had absolutely nothing to do with frost, though ;-)
I've experienced the same problem, almost every time it froze below -5°C
you can actually see that the switch lever doesn't move.
I found the quickest way to resolve it, is to use a hairdryer to warm up the switches, as well as the keylock and to melt away the layer of ice that can stick to the seating spot.
I don't carry around the hairdryer, because most usually it's early morning when I have to leave for work that the freezing occurs.
I have now also added a little string to the backseat-lock to be able to open the trunk at those occasions.
Btw,I can see the the irony of using a hairdryer on an "environmentally friendly" vehicle :-)
Just had this happen to me this evening- very cold evening, frost all over the bike.
Left brake switch not operating at all (no brake light either). Had to pull the wires out of the back of the switch and short them together so that I could get home.
I'll dismantle it tomorrow and find out what's going wrong.
Edit2 Jan 2011
The switch is made by Anglí Industrias SA of Spain, part no 468.03 and is designed for motorcycles and scooters, so it is surprising that the cold weather is having an effect. The "crimped vs soldered" argument is irrelevant in this issue, since (apart from the broken crimp above), the switch functions again when warm.
I would suggest that the plunger is getting damp, then freezing solid. A spray of WD40 at the beginning of the winter should resolve it.
It looks like the consensus is that the plunger on the brake light switch, gets water on the inside and causes the connection to never be made. Some type of aqua-phobic spray should be used at the beginning of the cold season.
Also for cold weather riding, a pair of handle bar muffs and a good pair of ski pants, make all the difference between an enjoyable ride and freezing your but off. ;-)
I'm afraid the explanation is not that simple: The switch is a "push-to-make" contact, but the default position (with the brake not applied) is "in", i.e. the contact is made. When you pull the brake lever, the plunger comes out and breaks the contact. The software detects this and puts on the brake light - or initiates the start sequence.
So, for this to NOT work, it means the plunger is not coming out. Water in the switch which then freezes solid is the only explanation I can think of. As the water is unlikely to be clean, it would need to go well below 0C (32F) to freeze it, which is why the reports only come when it's every cold indeed.
WD40 should not only help keep water out, but also act as an antifreeze.
Skipants and good gloves (or mitts) are definitely a good plan!
I just got this vectrix vx-2, is already having issue, the hand-shake does not work anymore. Usually, holding left brake then apply right brake will make the directional light to flash then the bike is good to good, but it doesn't do that anymore. I figure it has something to do with the left brake, since holdings it will NOT turn on the brake-light. Please help, thanks!
Well, if the pulling on the left brake lever does not energize the brake light, then most likely the brake light switch on that brake lever is not working anymore and might have to be replaced. Or repositioned.
That's exactly how I fixed my VX-1. Just went to the local scooter shop with the old switch and they found me one that fit, it has a red plunger not black, but you don't really see it... Cost less that $5
Somewhat related to this (and I'm a newbie here, haven't figured out how to post a new topic yet):
Last month my VX-2 got dropped by accident on the right side (i.e. throttle side), and now it won't start. The throttle rotation now has a tiny bit of roughness/stickiness to it.
Other electrical items are still working fine - headlight, signals, horn, and LCD display, but the bike won't start at all. Used the service manual to remove the covers but didn't see anything obviously broken.
Any ideas? Throttle? Brake switch?
The original dealer, Rockridge Two Wheels in Oakland, no longer has the expertise to do repairs.
Separate and possibly related info:
Before, I used to have occasional trouble with the start-up, especially during warm weather. But I figured out that rolling the throttle slightly while doing the left-right brake squeezes did the trick and I had few problems after that.
However, I would also occasionally have a problem with the bike "stalling" while sitting at a red light, whereupon I'd have to pull over to the curb and reboot (sometimes with difficulty).
Any help would be most appreciated. (I've also contacted service.vectrixparts.com about this.)