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Author Topic: Assembly and Discussion of the Right-hand Switch (a rebuilder's guide)  (Read 24673 times)

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Offline the-chauffeur

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Hey - glad I could help.

Painting on markings is no problem over powdercoat.  Enamel paint works particularly well and just one coat seems to hold up pretty good.  Paint application and adhesion is the easy part - what I find more of a problem is getting the accuracy of the lettering right when the original markings are not very pronounced.  Sorry, I haven't explained that particularly well . . .

 . . . if you look at the all black switchgear, you'll see the L, H and dot marks are well defined.  Filling marks like those in is very straightforward with an artists brush, toothpick end or other fine pointed applicator - and if done carefully, they look pretty much factory spec.  However, the OFF and ON lettering is much more shallow - so getting those markings to look right is more tricky, and requires considerable patience. 

As for the killswitch knob, although the one in the picture was black to start with (early K0 SL350's share the same switchgear as Sandcast 750's), it was very sun bleached, almost to the point of being white.  I wet-and-dried it with a fine paper, gave it a couple of coats of plastic paint and I gotta say it came out far better than I ever thought it would.  I'm sure the same can be done with red ones.

Hope that's useful.

Offline SohRon

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Great info! Some shots of the finished results would be good to see. I've attempted it myself with so-so results. I sandblasted, then coated with POR15 Chassis Coat followed by two coats of Rustoleum Painter's Touch semi-gloss. I used the above-mentioned Model Master International Orange for the marks, which came out okay, I guess. The kill switch indicators are very poorly molded (stamped? roll-engraved?) into the body of the switch, so it's hard to get a good solid letter (especially the "U" on "RUN"). They were applied with an automated silkscreen at the factory, so it didn't matter what actually happened with the incised markings...


Re-marking these is one area where I'm having a tough time getting what I believe are acceptable results, so any suggestions are welcome.
« Last Edit: December 31, 2010, 09:50:58 AM by SohRon »
"He slipped back down the alley with some roly-poly little bat-faced girl..."

Assembling my '74 CB550: http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=86697.0
Assembly of the Right-hand Switch (a rebuilder's guide):  http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=80532.0
Installing stock 4X4 exhaust: CB500-CB550 K: http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=82323.0

Offline apex_seeking

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Looks better than most of the switches I see but I do understand wanting perfection. Not sure if it would work but what about using a wax crayon on the surface around the lettes and then you could get as messy with the paint as you'd like. Let it dry and then use alcohol to clean off the wax. I don't know if the raised area is shaped right for this to work or not but maybe...

Offline SohRon

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Looks better than most of the switches I see

Thanks... The color is right, but I still haven't got the lettering.

The crayon is an interesting idea, but it might be tough to get a sharp edge. I may just mask off the "U" and try it that way...
« Last Edit: January 15, 2011, 06:25:10 PM by SohRon »
"He slipped back down the alley with some roly-poly little bat-faced girl..."

Assembling my '74 CB550: http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=86697.0
Assembly of the Right-hand Switch (a rebuilder's guide):  http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=80532.0
Installing stock 4X4 exhaust: CB500-CB550 K: http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=82323.0

Offline Dean

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Thanks for the outstanding write up.  If I had found this a while ago I might have rebuilt mine instead of buying that NOS one I just got from eBay. 

Have you thought about offering switch rebuilds as a service for a fee?

Offline mrbreeze

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Dude.....I haven't read through this post but I wish it was on here a few years back.I have a grab bag of hand control parts (mostly right side) that I aquirred from Ebay purchases. I finally gave up and bought Yami 650 controls from Mike's XS and after alot of experimenting.....made them work on my bike.I know the stock bike purists don't care for what I did.I don't care!!! If I ever really wanna go stock...I can pull it off one way or another and your post I'm sure will be a huge help with that.Thanks for contributing to the club and I promise I will read this whole thread(book-marked) later.
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Offline SohRon

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Thanks for the outstanding write up...  Have you thought about offering switch rebuilds as a service for a fee?

Only if I can get better results re: re-application of the markings!  :)  Honestly, I'm not sure how well it would pay, considering the time involved; though I am working on a couple of things for ebay



I have a grab bag of hand control parts (mostly right side)...  If I ever really wanna go stock...  your post I'm sure will be a huge help...

Sounds like you have what you need... what's keeping you!?!  I found this out at the local boneyard just swaying in the breeze



I'll be doing a rebuild thread on it, then adding the results here to kind of fill in some of the blank spots. Be sure to check back for further develpoments.

I also encourage anyone doing a rebuild based on this thread to post pics and add their impressions to the general discussion.


I promise I will read this whole thread(book-marked) later.

You better, fellah; otherwise you're gonna find yourself in a heap 'o trouble!  ;D
« Last Edit: January 19, 2011, 07:35:18 PM by SohRon »
"He slipped back down the alley with some roly-poly little bat-faced girl..."

Assembling my '74 CB550: http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=86697.0
Assembly of the Right-hand Switch (a rebuilder's guide):  http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=80532.0
Installing stock 4X4 exhaust: CB500-CB550 K: http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=82323.0

Offline DarcyCB400F

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SohRon you may have missed your calling! You write with a manor of experience and professionalism that is a treat to read!!! Haynes or Chilton should have been so lucky to have you on their team!!!!

Just last night I replaced my badly broken starter switch on my '77 CB400F and although I was not happy with my "Honda" replacement (made in China) because the kill switch was purple (I did put the original red one on), the black finish is different and the "clam" doesn't fully embrace the handle bar leaving a gap; one large or two small depending on how you tighten it onto the bar.

I am considering exchanging all the new guts into the old "clam" so would appreciate any advice you might have about this.
1977 CJ360T
1977 CB400F
1980 CB900 Custom
1981 GS550L
1989 DR200R
1998 VT1100C2 ACE
1999 XR400R
2006 CR230F
2007 HD Road King

Offline mrbreeze

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I sure will use this as reference when I go to rebuild a set. Have 2 new project bikes waiting in the wings. Thanks for sharing 8)
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Offline fastbroshi

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Just last night I replaced my badly broken starter switch on my '77 CB400F and although I was not happy with my "Honda" replacement (made in China) because the kill switch was purple (I did put the original red one on), the black finish is different and the "clam" doesn't fully embrace the handle bar leaving a gap; one large or two small depending on how you tighten it onto the bar.

  I know this is a little off topic, but how many times have we heard about some product like this from China?  That piece fitting like that is just silly.  You'd think before they finalized production they'd actually put them on a set of bars that the switch was intended to go on, or at least measure the darned thing.

Carry on Ron.

Offline MOtub

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Thanks for going to the trouble of putting this together, it's very well done. I had my switch partially apart yesterday, then discovered your post today. Yesterday I gave up and put it back together because I didn't fully understand how it all works. Now that I've read your excellent explanation I'll give it another try. The pictures and the text are perfect. Thank you!
76 CB400F
74 CB550
73 CL125S

Offline wentwest

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Terrific write-up. Thanks.

The only tip I can add, learned after years of cursing, creeping around the garage with a magnet looking for tiny springs and balls, is to work over a light colored towel, not a sheet of paper. Those little balls stop dead in their tracks on a towel. The same idea also works when you are rebuilding the balls in the steering head.

Offline SohRon

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Work over a light colored towel, not a sheet of paper. Those little balls stop dead in their tracks on a towel.

Good tip! And thanks to others for all of the kind words. Glad this helps.
"He slipped back down the alley with some roly-poly little bat-faced girl..."

Assembling my '74 CB550: http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=86697.0
Assembly of the Right-hand Switch (a rebuilder's guide):  http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=80532.0
Installing stock 4X4 exhaust: CB500-CB550 K: http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=82323.0

Offline Ricky_Racer

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SohRon, beautiful write-up! I hesitate to ask, but could you (by any chance, respectfully, gratefully, et.al.) do a similar article on the left-hand switch? 

And I really think your post should be in the FAQ!  Thanks.  RR

I was put on Earth to accomplish a certain number of things. Now I'm so far behind, I'll never die!

Offline Accolay

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Quote
And I really think your post should be in the FAQ!
Here Here! Is it in the FAQ? Awesome write-up!

I redid mine for the CB550F and I posted the pictures here: http://s581.photobucket.com/albums/ss258/accolay_accolay/1977%20CB550F/Handlebar%20Switch%20Disassembly/
The only thing I would do differently was have them re-anodized instead of painting, only because I'm an awful painter and I get too much on. This filled up some of the letter markings so when I reapplied the paint for the letters I couldn't get paint in some of them to be orange again. I used the exact same color of model paint as you did, SR. The only thing I did differently was I put a little dab of anti-sieze in with the internal screws-one of them was really hard to get out. Those internal screws were hard to find
1977 CB550F

Offline SohRon

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Anodizing is certainly how it was done in the first place! So, what are the costs/proceedures required to do it? Can you get the semi-gloss finish originally applied to these? And - as we all know how the original finish turns gray after a while - how long can we expect the finish to last before we have to re-apply?

This certainly is an option that would be good to have. Can you post pics of your controls?
"He slipped back down the alley with some roly-poly little bat-faced girl..."

Assembling my '74 CB550: http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=86697.0
Assembly of the Right-hand Switch (a rebuilder's guide):  http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=80532.0
Installing stock 4X4 exhaust: CB500-CB550 K: http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=82323.0

Offline Accolay

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I would post pictures of my controls if they looked as good as yours do. They are mechanically and electrically sound but not as pretty on the outside: I got some chips in them before I put them on and didn't have time to touch them up. Maybe I can get pics tomorrow.

I have no idea about the anodizing, but if I did it again I would definitely look into it.
1977 CB550F

Offline anthony

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have you tried a tooth pick or a Popsicle stick cut to a point for lettering. 

Offline the-chauffeur

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A little update following some stuff I've been working on. 

I had my 750 frame and ancillaries powdercoated a couple of weeks ago and got the switchgears and master cylinder done at the same time.  Much like the switchgear for my 350 (see previous post) I had the 750 handlebar parts finished in a sort of satin finish, and refinished the kill switch with a vinyl paint.  But as before, found I was struggling with the lettering infills, until the following two words occurred to me - lacquer pen.  In a local model shop, I picked up an extra fine nib red lacquer pen in pretty much the same red as the kill switch paint, which itself isn't a million miles from the infill lettering on the high beam switch that I picked up recently.  Using one of those magnifying lights that dentists use - which makes the job much easier - and as steady hands as I could manage, I put this lot together:




Not perfect by any means, but good enough from a foot or so away to not look out of place.  The P was particularly tricky because the indentation is very shallow - and that's pretty much the same reason the ON isn't filled - yet.  I've tried it a couple of times, but it's a poor stamping, which is very tough to get right.  I've wiped it down a couple of times with turpentine to take off what little red I'd put on, but knowing that powdercoat is basically paint, I'm a bit wary of going too far and messing the switchgear coating up.  I'll keep working on it.  BTW - gotta say I'm particularly pleased with the way the master cylinder turned out  ;)

Products used - ignore the brands; unless you're looking for concourse, I reckon any that look right will do.



Another couple of quick notes: 

If you're rebuilding the switches from scratch, strip out the kill switch wires from the rest on that side - it makes them easier to solder onto the switch plate.  Use a decent soldering iron; the little joints are a pig to do without one.

13mm heatshrink is just about big enough to cover the internal wiring and once it's shrunk makes the job of threading the handlebars much easier than coverings like electrical tape (spraying the outer sheath with some form of silicone lubricant before threading also helps). 

Hope that helps.
« Last Edit: April 06, 2011, 09:10:22 AM by the-chauffeur »

Offline SohRon

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Thanks,  the-chauffeur for giving us an update, and for sharing some excellent tips. Those switches look great! I'll have to try the marking pen. And anthony, I've heard of folks getting good results using toothpicks and popsickle sticks as you describe; I've been meaning to try it but just haven't taken the time

If you're re-sleeving your wiring, the heatshrink will work, but the original shiny black nylon sleeving (not a heatshrink, BTW) is also available here:

http://www.vintageconnections.com

the 11MM sleeving is what was used for the switch loom. Either way gives excellent results.

Anyone else have any tips for marking these things?
« Last Edit: April 07, 2011, 09:32:30 PM by SohRon »
"He slipped back down the alley with some roly-poly little bat-faced girl..."

Assembling my '74 CB550: http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=86697.0
Assembly of the Right-hand Switch (a rebuilder's guide):  http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=80532.0
Installing stock 4X4 exhaust: CB500-CB550 K: http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=82323.0

Offline Scott S

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 OK, using this guide, I got my RH switch rebuilt. It was actually easier than I thought it would be.

 HOWEVER.....Now, I'm working on the LH switch and I'm having a HELLUVA time getting the contact board/block for the turn signal switch back in place.  It has a ball and spring on one side (which is actually the easy part) and a spring and contact plate on the other that goes against the circuit board. That part is kicking my ass. Any suggestions?
'71 CB 500 w/ CB650 engine
'78 CB550K
'75 Yamaha XS650
'87 Yamaha Radian
 and too many projects...

Offline Scott S

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 Finally got mine done. This thread was a great help. I have to say, though...the LH switch was probably harder than the RH side. Getting the block in place for the turn signal was a real P.I.T.A.



 Ever have a gap in the control housing? I had to work on mine with a dremel tool and I still don't have it completely closed up. Here's a pic and a thread I started on it.

http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=87532.0


'71 CB 500 w/ CB650 engine
'78 CB550K
'75 Yamaha XS650
'87 Yamaha Radian
 and too many projects...

Offline SohRon

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Lots of new questions regarding this switch; I'll be posting new info soon!

Later
"He slipped back down the alley with some roly-poly little bat-faced girl..."

Assembling my '74 CB550: http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=86697.0
Assembly of the Right-hand Switch (a rebuilder's guide):  http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=80532.0
Installing stock 4X4 exhaust: CB500-CB550 K: http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=82323.0

Offline spartyon8

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I bought a bike that the previous owner slaped together. He couldn't get the right hand switch working and cut all of the wires off at the base. How hard would it be to rebuild using all new wires? Is it just soldering up the joints?

Offline SohRon

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I ran across this in another thread and thought it would be appropriate to quote here. Quote from Bord0080 :

I recently replaced my start button.  I have the 1976 CB750, whose start button will inevitably break.  I used a mini SPDT rated for 3Amp at 125VAC from Radio Shack to replace it.  My local RS only had the On/On pushbutton, but there is a momentary pushbutton on their website: http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2062541.  It works quite well, I just had to solder the wires from the old switch to the new, wedge it into the housing and use the supplied washer and nut to hold it in place!

It seems like it would work fine to me. Thanks for the tip.
« Last Edit: August 17, 2011, 05:22:09 PM by SohRon »
"He slipped back down the alley with some roly-poly little bat-faced girl..."

Assembling my '74 CB550: http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=86697.0
Assembly of the Right-hand Switch (a rebuilder's guide):  http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=80532.0
Installing stock 4X4 exhaust: CB500-CB550 K: http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=82323.0

 

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