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Sticky motorcycle ignition key

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sapstar
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PostPosted: 17:36 - 14 Jan 2020    Post subject: Sticky motorcycle ignition key Reply with quote

I got my bike a month ago. All has been well to yesterday. But since yesterday morning, I noticed that the ignition key became quite sticky. I am able to push the keys in, but struggling to turn them. After trying for a few mins I am eventually able to turn the ignition on.

I tried the spare key today as I thought the other may have worn, but again it's the same problem. The key works fine on petrol tank and unlocking the seat. Can I just use subs wd40 or gt85 on the ignition?
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WD Forte
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PostPosted: 17:55 - 14 Jan 2020    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sticking the nozzle of a say wd40 can down the lock and giving it a good flush might wash any debris fouling the tumblers out
wont do any harm.
If it's still sticky, you may have to fit a new switch or barrel to be on the safe side.
I changed a lock set on a YBR recently and it wasn't expensive so would hope a set for ER wont be.
Removing the old lock was the hardest part due to the security screws
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Riejufixing
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PostPosted: 17:58 - 14 Jan 2020    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sounds like wear or stuff glueing up the lock. Try for a quick fix dropping some white spirit or similar solvent in, then try the key. Don't force it, it could be damaged. If it's better, clean it out properly with more solvent, give it a blast with an air line if you've got one, then lubricate it with some graphite (e.g. from a pencil, you don't need a lot) If it's not better you might have to do something else, but try that first.
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stinkwheel
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PostPosted: 18:07 - 14 Jan 2020    Post subject: Reply with quote

Riejufixing wrote:
then lubricate it with some graphite (e.g. from a pencil, you don't need a lot) If it's not better you might have to do something else, but try that first.


DO NOT USE GRAPHITE IN YOUR IGNITION LOCK. It makes and breaks electrical connections and graphite is a conductor of electricity.

it's a good choice as a "dry" lube for other locks but not ones with switches in.

Lubricate ignition locks with silicone lubricant. WD40 is also ok as a quick fix but does leave a residue that tends to accumulate dust and muck over time which can gum up the works.

In a perfect world, I'd use WD40 to clean out the muck and any water followed by a spray solvent to clean out the WD40 followed by a silicone spray to lube and protect.

One thing. This happened suddenly. Is there actual glue in there? It is not unheard of for a theif to put superglue in the lock so the bike is left in the same place so they can come back and steal it later.

So if you are in a bike theft area, the bike was left unattended somewhere a theiving bastard could get at it and it looks a bit like there could be actual glue in the ignition lock. Park it elsewhere and lock it up tight.
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Polarbear
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PostPosted: 18:46 - 14 Jan 2020    Post subject: Reply with quote

^^^ Good shout re the glue in the lock^^^
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Nobby the Bastard
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PostPosted: 18:52 - 14 Jan 2020    Post subject: Reply with quote

It could be a worn key. Do you have a spare?
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sapstar
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PostPosted: 20:16 - 14 Jan 2020    Post subject: Reply with quote

WD Forte wrote:
Sticking the nozzle of a say wd40 can down the lock and giving it a good flush might wash any debris fouling the tumblers out
wont do any harm.
If it's still sticky, you may have to fit a new switch or barrel to be on the safe side.
I changed a lock set on a YBR recently and it wasn't expensive so would hope a set for ER wont be.
Removing the old lock was the hardest part due to the security screws

Looks like wd40 did the trick.

I initially tried air duster. It didn't make a difference. Then tried wd40. After this I am able to turn the key on and off without too much effort. It is still not as smooth as it used to be last week, but much better than yesterday.
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sapstar
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PostPosted: 20:25 - 14 Jan 2020    Post subject: Reply with quote

stinkwheel wrote:
Riejufixing wrote:
then lubricate it with some graphite (e.g. from a pencil, you don't need a lot) If it's not better you might have to do something else, but try that first.


DO NOT USE GRAPHITE IN YOUR IGNITION LOCK. It makes and breaks electrical connections and graphite is a conductor of electricity.

it's a good choice as a "dry" lube for other locks but not ones with switches in.

Lubricate ignition locks with silicone lubricant. WD40 is also ok as a quick fix but does leave a residue that tends to accumulate dust and muck over time which can gum up the works.

In a perfect world, I'd use WD40 to clean out the muck and any water followed by a spray solvent to clean out the WD40 followed by a silicone spray to lube and protect.

One thing. This happened suddenly. Is there actual glue in there? It is not unheard of for a theif to put superglue in the lock so the bike is left in the same place so they can come back and steal it later.

So if you are in a bike theft area, the bike was left unattended somewhere a theiving bastard could get at it and it looks a bit like there could be actual glue in the ignition lock. Park it elsewhere and lock it up tight.


Thanks for your input. I leave my bike outdoors when going for work. I think the area is quite busy and probably no one should try to put glue in it.... But I can't be sure. At home, the bike is garaged.

Not sure if this is a coincidence. I have installed an alarm last week and when I unlock the bike, the alarm LED flashes twice. Yesterday back from work, I noticed it was continuously flashing and I had to click unlock again. I called the alarm manufacturer and they said that the flashing led during unlock means the alarm has been triggered when it was locked.

The only alternate location I can park near my office is a near by carpark. I think the street is more secure than the carpark.

In terms of cleaning the lock barrel, now that I have used wd40 already, what should my next steps be? Can you suggest a solvent spray and silicone spray?
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Riejufixing
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PostPosted: 20:48 - 14 Jan 2020    Post subject: Reply with quote

stinkwheel wrote:
DO NOT USE GRAPHITE IN YOUR IGNITION LOCK. It makes and breaks electrical connections and graphite is a conductor of electricity

I've never seen an ignition lock where the connections are in the barrel, and generally use graphite lubricant. No problem. Have you got a picture of one with connections in the barrel?

Of course graphite's a conductor.
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Riejufixing
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PostPosted: 20:52 - 14 Jan 2020    Post subject: Reply with quote

sapstar wrote:
In terms of cleaning the lock barrel, now that I have used wd40 already, what should my next steps be? Can you suggest a solvent spray and silicone spray?

I generally use white spirit and blow it out. Petrol's good too. Any silicone spray should do, but I prefer graphite. Edit: You could try this: https://www.toolstation.com/ptfe-spray/p63929 which the bloke over the road says is good.
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sapstar
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PostPosted: 23:13 - 14 Jan 2020    Post subject: Reply with quote

Riejufixing wrote:

I generally use white spirit and blow it out. Petrol's good too. Any silicone spray should do, but I prefer graphite. Edit: You could try this: https://www.toolstation.com/ptfe-spray/p63929 which the bloke over the road says is good.

I have some white spirit. I also have Gt85 which has PTFE written on the can. Can I use this instead of the silicone spray?
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Pigeon
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PostPosted: 23:40 - 14 Jan 2020    Post subject: Reply with quote

sapstar wrote:

Looks like wd40 did the trick.


As is so often the way in life, lube is the answer.


I use wd40 for removing water (obvs) and crap, unsticking stuff and providing short term lube.
But it will act as a degreaser if used a lot.

I've used 3in1 oil in my locks on a fairly regular basis for years (on the hopes it helps reduce wear). Seems to be ok.
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stinkwheel
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PostPosted: 00:54 - 15 Jan 2020    Post subject: Reply with quote

Riejufixing wrote:

I've never seen an ignition lock where the connections are in the barrel, and generally use graphite lubricant. No problem. Have you got a picture of one with connections in the barrel?

Of course graphite's a conductor.


The vast majority on Japanese bikes have the electrical connectors directly underneath the lock barrel and the switch housings are not sealed. Graphite is a loose powder with remarkable spreading properties, gravity is the law.

Not saying it WILL happen but what you put into a vertical ignition barrel can and does land up in the switch. If you get water in the switch, you spray WD40 down the lock to clear it.

OP. Your WD40 will be absolutely fine. I am referring to what would be best rather than what is practical. I persoanlly use dielectric silicone grease in my ignition locks... but I have a can of it in the garage and do a fair bit of wiring which is its main use. It wouldn't make sense to buy it for this one job.
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jaffa90
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PostPosted: 01:29 - 15 Jan 2020    Post subject: Reply with quote

Many years ago i used sticky backed velcro on the top yoke and a rubber flap (old inner tube) , lift the flap stick the key in, the flap directed the rain over the key & barrel. Cool
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JackButler
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PostPosted: 06:07 - 15 Jan 2020    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you need to wiggle & jiggle your key to turn it then pushing the key forward usually allows you to turn.

It's actually WD40 that usually causes this & locksmiths love it, keeps 'em real busy. When the solvent in WD40 dries off, it leaves a shellac like gunge behind.

Spray WD40 into an ignition barrel & it will wash away the grease the manufacturer put in there. It will make the tumblers sticky as well as blocking the water drain hole. The classic sign WD40 has been used is the little flap over the key hole sticking open.

By using WD40 after it caused the problem all you are doing is temporarily dissolving the gunge only for it to solidify again.

The tumblers are made of brass which is softer than the steel of the key, over a period of time you will eventually wear down the tumblers & you will always have to push the key forwards to turn it.

Solution is to strip the lock & clean those tumblers. If you wipe grease on do it only to the outside of the tumbler barrel, otherwise you get a pocket full of grease everytime you put the key away. You can use a wet grease but most pro locksmiths will use a graphite or sillicone grease.

It's important that the drain hole is clear & the path through the barrel is free for any water to flow straight out & not collect in the barrel.

Please stop spraying WD40 down your ignition barrels.
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recman
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PostPosted: 07:49 - 15 Jan 2020    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just give my ignition a bit of a waz with contact cleaner from time to time and the key gets a drop of 3 in 1.
In, turn on and off a few times, out, wipe key, job jobbed.
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