“Ground Fix” for VTX 1800 Bareass Choppers Motorcycle Tech Pages

12 Мар 2015 | Author: | Комментарии к записи “Ground Fix” for VTX 1800 Bareass Choppers Motorcycle Tech Pages отключены

“Ground Fix” for VTX 1800

by Bare | Last Updated 5, 2011

Original pictures by Tapper, Bill, and “Dangerously” of the

This is an article about up and fixing the grounds on the VTX 1800, all It has been done so often by so riders that it has taken on the moniker of “the ground I’d like to thank Tapper who was the to document this process has helped riders all over for years.

He is also responsible for the pictures in this article, I have modified.

Now you might be why this is so important, or even why a brand new VTX would need – I mean, it’s a new bike, Well here’s the deal, Honda made the VTX they did much the same thing always done – design the powder coat it, bolt all the to it. Now that has worked for Honda and other manufacturers for years, the that sets the VTX 1800 is that it is fuel injected (FI for

FI means this bike has a lot of and sensors that carbureted don’t have. Electronics a good power source and grounds to function.

I mentioned that Honda powder the frame and then bolted to it. This includes the electronics and the ground eyelets. Anyone who anything about electronics tell you that it’s to run power through an insulator powder coat.

This the bike’s ground points are trying to connect through the coat are struggling.

The next is caused by all the connections at the grounds. For the common electronics ground of a powder coated steel a steel coil mounting and a brass eyelet for the electronics These are all connected by a zinc-coated 10mm bolt.

This poses a problem because of an process known as “Galvanic or “Galvanic corrosion.” The short is that when you have metals in direct contact each other they at an advanced pace. When you run a through these metals the occurs even faster. So there are multiple metals in contact, and one of them is a ground so there is current passing them all…

Hopefully this helps the picture of why this is a necessary to do with your bike it gets bad enough to cause Once the corrosion sets in bike will likely exhibiting all sorts of problems running poorly, fouling rough idling, cylinders or the worst part – throwing ECU error codes. These codes can cause you to spend of cash at a dealer as chase trying to diagnose what is just a poorly connected terminal.

So let’s fix this it becomes an issue, right?!


Tools to remove

Tools to remove gas tank


10mm socket


Socket extension

Dielectric (available at most auto

Sandpaper or Dremel w/ grinding


In order to get to everything to fix grounds you need to be able to the seat and remove the gas tank. this can be done without removing the tank, so if you’re a little intimidated by that you can just break the tank and slide it backwards on the backbone to get to the coil. This is admittedly a easier on 02-04 model but I still believe it can be done on the 05+ with a little care.

It makes things easier if you the front spark plug (5mm allen) and disconnect the plug boots so the coil can be loose later.

So remove the the front spark plug and decide how you’re going to the gas tank. Now you should be ready to get

Common Electronics Ground

ground is the most problematic of the and is usually the culprit when problems arise. Look on the side of the backbone towards the of the bike – just behind the under the front tank and in front of the radiator cap and you should see the ignition coil. If for any reason you trouble finding it just the spark plug wires the front cylinder up, they into this coil.

The pic is what you’re looking it’s just already

When you find it you’ll see it is in place with two 10mm Remove the 2 bolts and the coil loose, the rear bolt has the common electronics ground under it. This is some of I talked about above, different metals all in one place a current across them.

you take yours apart you may find corrosion throughout the

The easiest way to do this job is to remove the from the bike altogether. is why I said to remove the spark boots from the plugs There are 2 additional wires into the rear of the coil.

them as well. Take that the 2 wires are black w/ a stripe and blue w/ a yellow – the black one connects to the inner closest to the backbone of the bike.

the 2 bolts, 2 plug wires and 2 wires disconnected the coil and should come right off the You’ll have to wiggle it a and compress the radiator hose to get it but it will come out.

Now everything apart, start it all. First take the and use it to clean the ground eyelet. A sanding should remove any corrosion and get it nice and shiny. sand off the powder coat at the mounts until you have metal. I find that sandpaper to clean the ground works well, but it can take a bit of for the powder coat.

This is why I a Dremel or drill with stone attachments. If you have an like the ones pictured it can make this job a breeze. You have to be careful because will also quickly paint and powder coat other places where you want them.

Grinding for use on rotary tools

At this you should have cleaned the mounts and the ground eyelet so you can on to the coil and coil bracket you removed from the bike. at the bottom of the coil on each end and you see a 10mm bolt. Remove 2 bolts to remove the coil from the coil.

Be careful not to the “U” shaped connectors that the run through on each terminal. sandpaper clean the paint off the bracket where the 2 bolts through it (see pic above) on the inner and outer face. You to be certain that when you this back up, you have metal to metal contacts.

Also sand the coil where the coil mounts to it – where the nuts are tack-welded to the

Now set the coil bracket aside and the coil itself. Remove the “U” pieces on the coil and clean with sandpaper. Also the coil connections where “U” connectors sit and both 10mm Then get ready to put everything together.

Get the coil, bracket, and “U” pieces ready to reassemble and put a coat of dielectric grease on Begin to reattach the coil to the coil, making sure you put the “U” shaped pieces on the coil you put the bolts back through. as you reassemble the coil and bracket, part should be clean to metal contact and coated dielectric grease – the bolts, “U” coil and coil bracket.

If is the case then go ahead and the two 10mm bolts that the bracket to the coil. With all reassembled cover the connections more dielectric grease. is no reason to be stingy with the because you are depending on it to provide a barrier around the connections, them against the elements.

the coil reassembled squeeze it under the front tank and into place. Don’t to reattach the 2 electrical wires to it, – black wire to the inside. going to do the same thing that you just did attaching the and bracket – cover the coil on the frame with dielectric cover the ground eyelet grease, cover both of the coil bracket (the you sanded where the bolts through) with grease, and the two 10mm bolts with

Just like when you the coil and bracket back think to yourself and be certain you sanded, cleaned and greased piece being bolted If this is all done then it back up, the shorter black should be in front and the longer bolt should be in the back the ground eyelet under it. these bolts down to ensure you have a good

You also want to squeeze of the dielectric grease from the pieces as you tighten everything.

Honda VTX 1800 S

The part here is to once liberally cover both and the ground eyelet with grease to form a protective around everything. If you look, the to the above right is what you have when finished – bolted up and greased over. At point you can reconnect the spark (put some dielectric in the plug boots before you them) and reinstall the plug

You can reinstall the tank by following the directions in reverse and if you have a (05+) VTX this is it, you’re – there is no secondary battery on these models and the common ground issue I mention was only a problem on a limited of ’02 C models. Congrats!

Secondary Ground

With the common ground completed, doing secondary battery ground be a piece of cake. Look the seat, in front of the battery and ECU and to the of the Proportional Control Valve for the brakes. You will have to dig move some wires and a few out of your way to get to this.

Under all you will find a 10mm with another ground under it (see pic to right).

ground is subject to the same as the common electronics ground – coat issues, multiple and electric current. To fix it let’s the 10mm bolt so you can get in there and

With the bolt removed, use or a grinding stone (if you can fit it in there) to the powder coat off the frame where the bolt sits. the powder coat cleaned, use on the ground eyelet and get it clean and From the factory the bike only has this one eyelet but Power Commander and some accessories use this ground so if you find multiple terminals clean them all with the

You can see an additional terminal in the picture

Just like above, put grease on the frame, eyelets and and reassemble everything. Snug the down nice and tight to out any extra dielectric grease and liberally cover the entire with more dielectric for protection.

With this you can put all the wires, etc. back they came from the seat and reinstall your If you have anything other an ’02 C model you are done – congrats! The section discussing the common ground is a problem that only on certain ’02 C model

Common Chassis Ground

As above, this is a problem existed only for certain VTX 1800 C models. Chet Rattlebars did an excellent article on issue years ago so I won’t try to the entire thing. You can view article here:

The short is that Honda had a short run of C models where someone was the common chassis ground under the rear bolt on the cover rather than the bolt on the motor case. incorrectly located ground resulted in all sorts of problems things as simple as trouble the bike all the way to electrical fires by melting insulation on the ground I am sorry to say that my bike was one of that briefly caught so I learned about this the hard way long before I saw Chet’s article!

The picture to the is the proper location for the ground but it can be slightly misleading because picture was actually taken the bike, just in front of the wheel. The picture is so nice and you might not realize this if you recognize the oil filter and coolant also in the pic.

Honda service memos to all their so if you find this and don’t like getting your dirty you can ride over to local shop and ask them to fix it for If you want to do it yourself, it’s a matter of unbolting the ground from the wrong bolt and it to the proper one. I cannot how important it is to have this if you discover that you have one of problem ’02 C models.

My bike caught on fire 6 after I bought it, I have of others not having problems for but then one day – “…” – the wire up in flames.

If you have any additional please check out Chet’s as it is very thorough and has even pics.

That’s it – you’re – congratulations!


This is one of the important things you can do to keep VTX 1800 up and running well. As above, and discussed time and again on VTX forums all over, are so many problems that can as a result of these poor

Ask someone on a forum what be causing a problem on your and 9 times out of 10 the first thing will be “Have you done the fix?!” Fouling plugs, starting, intermittent ECU error rough idle, one cylinder All these and more can be solved by the fix.

Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not that these grounds are the of every one of these problems single time – but I can say from that the overwhelming majority of types of problems are resolved reworking these grounds.

is a fairly simple process only requires a few tools and a few worth of dielectric grease – but importantly it’s a process will eliminate so many before they ever I consider this to be so important I recommend doing it as a part of maintenance. Every 1-2 years, on mileage, riding conditions, etc get the bike and check these

Reclean them with and put a fresh coat of dielectric over everything to insulate Trust me, you won’t be sorry!

Honda VTX 1800 S
Honda VTX 1800 S


Tagged as:

Other articles of the category "Honda":

Our partners
Follow us
Contact us
Our contacts


Born in the USSR


About this site

For all questions about advertising, please contact listed on the site.

Motorcycles catalog with specifications, pictures, ratings, reviews and discusssions about Motorcycles.