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Old 27 Sep 2010
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Question Wee Strom Electrical Problem

The brake lights on my 2008 Wee Strom don't work. I checked the bulbs, fuses, switches and all connections and didn't find a problem. The only non-original parts in the electrical sysytem are after market front turn signal lights, so I disconnected them. I tried disconnecting the front brake switch connecter at the lever and tested both leads to see if I was getting power to the switch, but both sides of the switch leads were hot. When I hooked a jumper from the battery to each lead, all the lights came on, except the brake lights. I'm very confused; any advice?
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Old 27 Sep 2010
oothef's Avatar
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Have you tried new bulbs?
Anything can happen in the next half hour
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Old 28 Sep 2010
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I checked both bulbs by removing them from the sockets and checking for continuity with a VOM. Both checked out OK. I've eliminated bulbs, fuse and both switches. All check out OK.
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Old 28 Sep 2010
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On such a new bike this should not be an issue. Unusual. Could the installation of the new signals be the problem? Shorted something? or Used the type that require a separate ballast? Running them without the ballast can cause problems.

If you have power to the brake switches (right grip and foot pedal) then problem should be downstream from there.

The Vstrom tail light wires come in through the storage space in the tail section, if I recall. Anyone fooled with anything back there? Or jammed some tools in there (could cut a wire). Hard to see in there but make sure its all neat and tidy. Follow those wires forward (see below*).

Have you checked to see if you have voltage at the tail light fixture? Pull bulb, take your VOM, turn on key. Check the running light and brake light contact points on the fixture for 12V.

*The rear turn signals and tail/brake lights have wires that run forward and plug into the loom near the battery ... or somewhere in that area. Little plastic plugs are used.
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Old 29 Sep 2010
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Your front turn signal lights will not be the problem.

If you have panniers and racks then this will take a tad longer, but there is a connector at the rear, LHS looking from back to front. This is right where the plastic rear section joins the frame and is a normal connector.

You say you have power to both sides of the brake switch, that does not sound right to me.

Rather than try and be a middle man between forums, go here and ask your question, the Gurus on the VSRI V-Strom Riders International - Index forum helped me many times over the years.

Personally, I think it is the bulbs, they may measure OK with a DVM, but may break down under load, the only way to test the bulbs is to apply 12v to them.

VSRI - V-Strom Riders International - Index

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Old 29 Sep 2010
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Thanks guys; both of your posts give me something new to look for. For what it's worth, I tried to follow the leads from the tail lights back into the bike. I removed some of the plastic panels to get better access, but it's still really difficult to follow the individual wires as they go in and out of the wiring harness. I didn't find any loose, broken or corroded wires or connectors. I was concerned about the turn signals because they come off the same power source from the fuse box as the brake lights, but the turn signals work fine. I couldn't find a wiring diagram for the V-strom, but I found one for the SV 650, and there is nothing unique there that can explain this. When I had the bulbs out, I hooked them directly to a battery and they worked; both filaments lit when I hooked them up. The bike has not been wrecked or fiddled with, so I don't think anyone has boogered up the wiring. When all else fails, I'll bypass the wiring harness altogether and hook up brake lights on a seperate circuit.
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