Interpret references to "plug," "cable," "condenser" etc., as "plugs," "cables," "condensers" when more than one are used.

When hard starting or missing indicates a faulty ignition system, first, check condition of source of current (battery or magneto depending on model of motorcycle). If lamps light with full brilliancy and horn blows, indicating current source is in at least fair condition check, clean or replace spark plug. If this does not correct performance, inspect circuit breaker points and install new condenser. If condition persists, try a new ignition coil. (In the case where two separate coils are installed determine which is believed to be faulty.)

Temporarily substitute a new ignition coil by attaching it at any convenient point near old coil (coil will function without being securely grounded). Transfer terminal wires to new coil according to the information given in the wiring diagrams pertaining to the model being worked on. Attach new coil cable to the spark plug. If ignition trouble is eliminated by the temporary installation of new coil, carefully inspect old coil for damaged cables and insulation. The insulation on cables (and on some models the coil itself) may be cracked or otherwise damaged allowing high tension current to short to metal parts. This is most noticeable in wet weather or when motorcycle has been washed.

Replacing plug cable is the only repair that can be made to an ignition coil. If this does not correct faulty coil performance, coil is defective.

1. Spark plug cable

2. Spark plug cable boot

3. Ignition coil

4. Positive terminal strip

5. Negative terminal

6. Positive terminal

Figure 5G-2. Ignition Coils 1961 to 1964 Duo-Glide


Remove old cable (1) from coil terminal and install new cable. Always be certain that cable boot or cap

(2) is securely tightened to the coil tower to prevent moisture and dirt from contacting the high tension lead. Replace boot or cap if damaged or loose fitting.

Warm coil slightly to soften sealing compound so old cables may be pulled out easily, without breakage. To warm coil allow current to flow through it by turning "ON" ignition switch (circuit breaker points must be closed). Have new cables ready with ends trimmed and rounded so they will follow the holes left in sealing compound. Clip off old cable at plug end and transfer cable packing nut, (4) cable washer

(3) and new cable packing washer (2) onto the new cable and dip new cable end in very light oil. Remove old cable and quickly install new cable making certain it bottoms in the coil. After cable is installed turn seal nuts down against rubber packing to secure and seal it.

replacing cables do not heat coil too hot, doing so will soften sealing compound to the extent that cable holes through compound will close up as old cables are pulled out, blocking the insertion of new cables. If this happens, allow coil to cool and then form new cable holes using a piece of tubing with saw teeth filed in one end. Tubing should be of slightly larger diameter than cable. Holes through compound must be open so cables can be inserted all the way to their seats, where they contact high tension winding terminals; otherwise there is a gap in the high tension circuit and coil will not function.

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