First, we need to decide where to put the parts. I’d like to stick with the semi-stock way of doing things and place the electronic parts under the seat. I also got a great tip from Roc to put the switch on the frame fork directly under the seat (so you can reach it right above the ignition while driving). So that’s what we’re going to do.
Unfortunately, the wires that come with the tach aren’t long enough for that, so we’re going to have to extend them. Also, the coil that’s actually easy to get to (the one on the front of the bike under the gas tank) is pretty far away from this location, but the second coil (under the high side cover under the seat) is right next to where we’ll be working … even if it’s a pain to work with.
Many of these steps can be done in a different order, so just read over them in advance and decide what would be easiest. I didn’t have a particularly hard time with any one step or think I should have done it a different way, but you may be different. For instance, if you don’t want to try to push a full size plug around the bike, you could solder that connection last and just route wires.
First thing’s first. Let’s get the wiring set up. First thing I did was to finish the connector. Just take apart the white connector they give you, untape the plugs from the tach, and you’ll see that they nicely fit in and snap in place. These aren’t hooked up to anything yet, the bike is just my workbench, so everything is sitting on it.
Next step for me was to strip some of the insulation back from the new plug we’ve just made. You may want to strip more or less … just depends how much room you think you need to work with.
Side Note: The wire is 22 guage. Would have been nice if I’d checked that first since I could have bought wire to match instead of the 16 guage I used to extend everything.
The next thing we do is to cut the wires with enough room on both sides to strip some insulation and solder new connections on.
To extend the wires, I cut four wires (this is where I would have liked to use 22 guage instead of 16, but I work with what I have), and cut them just a little longer than the length of the body (from the tripple tree to the seat).
We then solder these ends together, wrap everything nicely, and wrap the bundle nicely as well.
And of course the same thing on the other side. I chose to wrap the entire length in electrical tape (they were out of heatshrink at Checker, or I might have used that).
I also had to extend the other set of wires coming off the tach since we’re going to the rear coil and not the front one.
Now to actually touch the bike! I set the tach in place and ran my extended wires along with the main wire bundle down the frame. You can see both wire bundles I created sitting right next to the main wire bundle. You can also see the massive rat’s nest of colored wires sticking out the back end and the brain (silver box with black wire bundles going into it) where the seat would be.
I routed the wires from the tach in the same place under the right seat fork (on the left in this picture).
Here you can see the two bundles extruding from the rubber water cover. I wanted to route them through there with the other connectors to keep things tidy, dry, and easy to access.
See the red wire with the black stripe? That’s a switched 12 volt source off of your main switch. That’s all the tach directions ask for, so great, we’ve found a good source to tap into for the wires from both the brain and the tach. Keeps it inside the water cover as well, which is nice.
Here’s that wire stripped. I also took off the bullet connector that connects to the brain side of the Barons system. I’m going to use fully soldered connections here (except the ground). We want to wire in both that wire and the red wire coming off the tach.
Here you can see the two wires already soldered and taped. We got to shorten the tail end of the red wire from the tach, and attached the red wire from the brain. This will all be nicely covered up.
Notice I’ve now also stripped the black wire from the brain and stripped a portion of the black wire from the tach. I’m going to connect those two inside this bundle also, so I only have one ground wire going to my ground, and no connection outside this bundle (at least, no connection I can easily put /inside/ this bundle).
This is where I decided to make the ground. It’s easily accessed and had a millivolt difference with any other ground on the bike, but to be certain, I stripped away some of the paint where the connection will be made.
Notice the connectors all tucked away again. Notice also where I’ve set the brain. I don’t think I’d done it quite yet, but I just used some double sided tape there. The brain has wires coming down off of one side of it. I let those hang down from the lip there, and go under the rubber cover. It fits very snugly. Notice we have just one black wire coming out of the bundle, and one green wire (to the coil). I’ve already taped those up here … the green wire is going to the tach on the right side of the bike, following another wire bundle on that side (we’ll get there next).
Notice also that the only other wire remaining is the connector for the button on the tach. I didn’t feel like shortening that wire, so I ended up zip tying it in place.
Your work under the seat is now finished. You can see the wire for the button leading off to where I stuck it (just out of frame), and everything else is pretty nice and tidy again.
Here’s the coil on the right side of the bike under the plastic cover. I stripped away some of the covering so you can see the yellow / blue wire. That’s the negative one. It’s a good thing because the positive one (on either coil) is nearly impossible to reach without taking the coil off. This one is hard enough as it is.
I just stripped a little insulation off so we can make a connection with our green wire that’s going to come down here
Here you can see the path I chose to route the green wire. Kept it along another wire bundle (we’ll tie it to to that). Just need to solder and tape and this guy is finished as well.
Here’s the finished product on this side. Nice and taped up, you can make out the extra wire (it’s the one on the right of the main bundle), but it should be pretty secure, and I won’t have to stare at a silly green wire every time I take off my cover.
Just a picture of where I strapped the button. Right after the fork on the seat. There’s a small space that lets you get the zip tie through, and you can reach this easily as it’s right over the ignition.
And here’s a picture of the button’s location with the bike re-assembled. Just in front of the cover. You can see it’s position relative to the seat and the gas tank. You can easily move this forward a little if that’s more comfortable for you.
And here’s a blurry picture (it was dark, needed a long shutter time) of the tach lit up and working. You might be able to make out it’s reading just about 1k RPMs, so now I can adjust my idle speed and see how I’m riding the bike! Only next bit is to decide which color I like and see if there’s a way to permanantly set it on that color … or change the order they come up in (I’m thinking jumpers). I’ll detail that if / when I get to it, because I just don’t want red to be the main color.