Motorcycle Electrical Systems & Wiring

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Use these pages to service and troubleshoot your motorcycle’s electrical systems. Refresh your old wiring harness or learn how to build one from scratch.

The electrical systems on many old bikes – especially ones that have been sitting for a long time exposed to the elements – can be a source of all sorts of problems. Learn how to identify and avoid them with the information in this section.

General Electrical Tips for Your Motorcycle

Learn what to do if you’re buying a motorcycle that has no keys. Fortunately, lost keys are not a deal breaker.

If you plan on reusing the existing electrical components and wiring on your project motorcycle it’s a good idea to check and clean the connections. Learn how to do so here.

Electrical issues can cause all sorts of no-start situations for your bike. Learn how to diagnose and solve common electrical issues you might be experiencing with your bike.

Points ignitions are pretty simple, but can cause problems if you don’t know how to check and adjust them. Learn how to set your points ignitions here.

Motorcycle Electrical Systems & Wiring Diagrams

Get to know your motorcycle’s battery and charging system. You’ll learn how the electrical system works and how to diagnose issues that may lie in the power or charging circuit.

At first glance, a motorcycle’s wiring diagram can be pretty confusing. Learn how to read and interpret the wiring diagram for your bike.

If you’re doing a custom build or have an existing wiring harness with problems, building a simplified harness yourself may be the right solution. Learn how to build your own wiring harness here and find some free wiring diagrams you can use as starting points.

Motorcycle Alternators

Types of Motorcycle Batteries

Bike-Specific Tips

CB750, KZ650, XS650 Ignition Timing

Here are the ignition timing procedures on some common project bikes.