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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My speedo on my '96 Vulcan is toast. Started to have a mind of it's own, a few months back, reading various mph at speed and at rest. It was kinda like a box of chocolates........you never knew what you were going to get. Now it is at a steady 110 mph. I haven't checked the gear drive or cable yet, but I have my suspicions that they will be fine. Since the unit is sealed, I don't have the option of repair. A new one is out of my price range and I have not found a used one as of yet. I was thinking of maybe adapting one from another bike, but have not followed through much with that option. I realize that I may lose my gas gauge, but that is no concern. I do have access to a CNC, so any part I need, I can make. I can make a whole new housing if need be. I'm not sure which route to pursue, hence this post. Anyone with some good ideas.....let's hear them.
 

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Disconnect the cable from your gear drive at the front wheel and hook it to a high speed drill. Running the drill in reverse you can rule out a cable break. If all is running fine (speedo is working) then it is your front wheel gear drive. Let me know what you find out.

-R
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Disconnect the cable from your gear drive at the front wheel and hook it to a high speed drill. Running the drill in reverse you can rule out a cable break. If all is running fine (speedo is working) then it is your front wheel gear drive. Let me know what you find out.

-R

The speedo is at a permanent 100mph..............I think it's trash
 

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Oh, I missed that part LOL
Still, you may want to check for a kink in the cable. Try disconnecting it and see if it goes down to zero. Those cables DO go bad.

-R
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Oh, I missed that part LOL
Still, you may want to check for a kink in the cable. Try disconnecting it and see if it goes down to zero. Those cables DO go bad.

-R
I will
 

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Check out e-bay. Sometimes you can find a used one there. You could also check out the mororcycle salvage yards.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Well........here's the update on my speedo saga. First option was to buy a new one for $300, scratch that. Second option was to buy one off Ebay. I found one for $130, but scratched that option, because knowing my luck, it will go south in two months. Third opton, that I found, was to send it away to a company that rebuilds metric speedos. I found one in San Diego (about a 2 hour drive) that would fix it for $160. They came with good references. I almost went that route, but I would be without my speedo for 3 weeks. I'm going to pass on that. I ride eveyday.....no way.
So.......I then come to my option of choice. I am going to replace it with an Autometer, 5" Procycle, 120 mph electronic speedo. They sold, new, close to $300, but I found one new in the box for $70. The driving force on this decision is that this speedo has programmable calibration. I just want an accurate speedo. I will adapt the sender to my hub and be on my way.
The downside is that I will lose my gas gauge. Not a big deal. If I really miss it, I will add a programmable gauge in the tank panel where my idiot lights are. I will also lose my neutral and high beam indicator. I will just add them above my idiot lights.
So....yes, it is more work, but it wil give me what I want....an accurate speedo and a new piece of equipment. I will take pics of my progress and the finished product.
 

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When was the last time your cable was replaced? Do yourself a favor...replace it and try the speedo then. it's cheap...about 20 bucks, and may well be your problem.

I had a problem with my 01 speedo last year. It was behaving extremely similar to what you are describing. Since the odometer seemed to be working properly, I was sure it was the speedo part itself. I replaced it twice and things were still wrong. I then replaced the speedo cable and to my surprise, it was working fine.

I wasted close to 300 bucks to fix a 20 dollar problem. it's worth a try since it's likely the cable could use replacing anyway....
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
When was the last time your cable was replaced? Do yourself a favor...replace it and try the speedo then. it's cheap...about 20 bucks, and may well be your problem.

I had a problem with my 01 speedo last year. It was behaving extremely similar to what you are describing. Since the odometer seemed to be working properly, I was sure it was the speedo part itself. I replaced it twice and things were still wrong. I then replaced the speedo cable and to my surprise, it was working fine.

I wasted close to 300 bucks to fix a 20 dollar problem. it's worth a try since it's likely the cable could use replacing anyway....
That's for the advice,...............but the cable and hubdrive check out fine. My current speedo's odometer and trip odometer work perfectly. My speedo is junk. When i walk my bike out of the shed, the needle swings from 30 to 50 mph. Riding down the road, it will vary from 90 to 110, but usually sticks around 110.
 

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exactly the same as mine was doing. Mine would sometimes move very slow, then go up to 80 and stay there no matter what. When I checked the hub and the cable itself for binding, everything was clean and clear.

My uneducated guess is that it's the very end of the cable up in the housing that drives the speedo and it's worn enough to not keep good contact to move the speedo. Just a guess, but it's the only thing I could find to explain why mine was doing what it was doing. Especially after changing speedos.

Here's a thought. How about finding someone in town with the same bike and try switching the speedo and see what it does. or perhaps try switching the speedo cable and see how that works. I suspect the speedo switch would be easier.

By the way...when I switched speedos, it worked fine for perhaps 2 weeks and then would flake out again. Very unpredictable results. All I know is it all cleared up when I replaced the cable.
 

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Depending on the miles registered on a ebay or salvage yard speedo I would of went with a used one, thinking that in the event I wanted to sell or trade the bike in the future, that a none OEM speedo would be a negative my $.02.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Depending on the miles registered on a ebay or salvage yard speedo I would of went with a used one, thinking that in the event I wanted to sell or trade the bike in the future, that a none OEM speedo would be a negative my $.02.

Sell my bike?..............................................never.
 

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I like your replacement idea. Not only will be calibrated accurately, but it will be unique. I def want to see pics. Since the suggestion was thrown out, why not replace the cable first. It is cheap and easy and if it doesn't work you will know you have a new cable for your new speedo.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I will not be using a cable with the new speedo. The electrical sender will be mounted on the front hub and wired from there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Update............My speedo has been verified as junk. Swapped the cable and the same scenario exists. I got my new speedo and it sure is pretty and it looks like it will fit perfectly in the original housing. It will be nice to have a speedo that has a calibration feature that will put it on dead nuts. Now for the next part. I have found a sender cable that will screw directly into my front hub. I am not sure if they are directly compatible as far as output. The speedo requires a 2.0 to 120v peak to peak output to operate. I should recieve the sender soon. I'll just have to wait and see what happens.
 
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