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Discussion Starter #1
All last summer the speedo on my K1200LT would work fine at the start of a ride, then jump around intermittently about 15 min to 30 min into the ride, then quit. Of course, that means no Cruise either. Feels like a bad connector. Just remove nose fairing, and checked connector at instrument panel, and connector under passenger seat. Before I remove the gas tank to check the main electrical "centre" I thought I'd ask to see if anyone else has experienced a similar issue?
thanks!
 

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What year LT?

If it is pre 2002, there is a well known, and easily fixed problem. The speed sensor wire from the speed sensor on the final drive unit is zip tied to the brake line, and at the front of the rubber section, near the swing arm pivot, the wire gets cut on the metal ferrule it is zip tied to.

Remove the small fairing piece in front of the right side case, and you can see it. Cut away the insulation, solder in a short jumper, wrap it with a split piece of rubber hose to prevent future cuts, zip tie it back, and ride.

If the bike is 2002 or later, the speed sensor is part of the ABS system, so this fix does not apply.
 

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I have seen this problem many times before, the crown piece that is pressed onto the final drive gear that makes the impulse for the pick up has come loose. Remove the speedo pick up ,take a screwdriver and stick it in the hole and feel if the castle type peice moves when you turn the rear wheel. It is pressed on and they do come loose. the fix is to open the rear drive, pull the large gear out, if the peice is loose remove it, take a punch and make several punches into the shaft and then drive the piece back on.
Joe
 

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rocketman007 said:
I have seen this problem many times before, the crown piece that is pressed onto the final drive gear that makes the impulse for the pick up has come loose. Remove the speedo pick up ,take a screwdriver and stick it in the hole and feel if the castle type peice moves when you turn the rear wheel. It is pressed on and they do come loose. the fix is to open the rear drive, pull the large gear out, if the peice is loose remove it, take a punch and make several punches into the shaft and then drive the piece back on.
Joe
First, we do not know what year his LT is. The cut wire or the loose sensor ring is only applicable to pre 2002 LTs. If it is a pre 2002, it is far more likely that it is a cut wire, as this happens OFTEN. I cannot recall more than one, possibly two postings about a loose sensor ring on the axle shaft, exceedingly rare, and a LARGE number of postings about the sensor wire being cut on the brake line, very common.
 

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rocketman007 said:
... the crown piece that is pressed onto the final drive gear that makes the impulse for the pick up has come loose...
As dshealey says, it all depends on the vintage of bike. However, I had exactly the problem described by rocketman007 on my mid-90's K100RS. Have been blaming electrics and it took me a long time to find the mechanical failure.
Resolved it by opening the drive and epoxying the sensor gear onto the shaft. Nowadays I'd use the gear-repair Locktite.
 

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It is of course difficult to diagnose a problem with out hands on the bike. But in my 35 years of working on BMW in a dealership, I have only had the broken wire one time. it was on my bike and occurred from not being careful when removing the rear tire and letting the caliper hang and put tension on that wire. However I have seen at least 15 different times on several different models where the sensor ring has come loose. You cannot make a snap judgement simply by the number of posts on this site, because not everyone with a problem has a computer or uses this site. Lets be fair and be real and not get an attitude. Just because its on the internet does not make it true. It is a simple test to determine what is wrong. The purpose of this site is to help each other, not to show whos the smartest.
 

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rocketman007 said:
It is of course difficult to diagnose a problem with out hands on the bike. But in my 35 years of working on BMW in a dealership, I have only had the broken wire one time. it was on my bike and occurred from not being careful when removing the rear tire and letting the caliper hang and put tension on that wire. However I have seen at least 15 different times on several different models where the sensor ring has come loose. You cannot make a snap judgement simply by the number of posts on this site, because not everyone with a problem has a computer or uses this site. Lets be fair and be real and not get an attitude. Just because its on the internet does not make it true. It is a simple test to determine what is wrong. The purpose of this site is to help each other, not to show whos the smartest.
Well, for the LT the cut wire is very common. Probably at LEAST 50 (probably many more) different posts on this site and it's earlier iterations by people having the problem. I was the first to have it here and post about it and it's repair. There have been very many since. The issue on the pre 2002 LT's is that the wire is zip tied tightly to the front fitting of the rear rubber brake line, right over the sharp edge of the ferrule around the rubber hose. Also, this is right at the pivot of the swing arm, so as the swing arm moves up and down over bumps the sharp edge cuts through the wire.

Granted, dealer mechanics see some things more than others, but by the same token the collective large number of owners of one particular bike on this site see FAR MORE of a particular problem than any one dealer ever will. Remember, there are thousands of LT owners on this site, no one particular dealer will likely ever see more than a couple hundred different LT's, if that.

This site is probably the largest single cross section of LT's on the planet, and we have had prpbably 50-100 cut sensor wires, and as far as I know, only 2 sensor rings come off. Neither is relevant on the 2002 and later LT's. That is far more statistical data relative to the LT (not other models) than any one dealer can ever hope to amass.
 

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I can confirm what Dave Shealey is talking about, having had that EXACT problem with my 99LT on a recent trip from New Jersey to Florida. The speedometer fluctuated, then began to read low (read 0.7 miles for a 1 mile distance), and finally stopped working altogether. I cleaned out the speed sensor (of course, while doing that I torqued off the bolt holding it in place!!! Things never go as planned) but rode it back to NJ without any speedometer/cruise/mileage odometer. When I got home, I disconnected all the ties holding the speed sensor wire to the frame and indeed there was a break in the wire from the sensor to the speedometer. There are two wires, one of which is the ground (brown), and one was broken. I spliced them together and now the speedometer, cruise etc work perfectly.

I appreciate the advice from Dave Shealey and also from John Zeiler (I was with him at the North Carolina spring Training Conference- he identified the cause of the problem as well). Experience can never be duplicated.
 

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I was yet another "broken wire speedo/cruise control failure" victim. Thanks to the fine folks on this site, I found and repaired it quickly. Thanks to all...
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thank you all for the great replies! The bike in question is a 2001. I now lean toward the "broken wire" theory...when the speedo does work intermittently, applying the brakes causes it to read normal during the brake application....then revert to being flaky again when the brakes are released.
I had to leave the LT in Vancouver when I found a PC800 for my wife to ride, and brought that home in my trailer. Will go retrieve my bike in two weeks...I can hardly wait to try your suggestions!
thanks so much again!
 

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I just started experiencing the same problem on my 2000 LT. I was told by the deaaler it may be related to the infamous rear failure but I was skeptical. That didn't make any sense to me. Anyway, MANY THANKS to all who provided some reasonable insight into this issue. I will be checking the wire to see if that is the problem. As a note, my LT would fine for a few miles, then the speedo needle would drop suddenly, regain its position, drop again and so forth. It hasn't, to this point, completely stopped working. I will post my findings later after I have a look.
 

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tbl160 said:
+1 with Dshealey, we had this issue with one of the LTs in our club a few years ago.
+2 - it was my bike.

If David says to tighten the bolts on your license plate to make your radio work properly - just go tighten the dam bolts.
 

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It just happened today on my '07. Just noticed the speedometer needle is on 0 all the time, odometer not ticking miles either and the cruise will not engage.

Because it is still on warranty, I'm taking it to the dealer. IRV Seaver is closed Mondays, so I'll have to wait until tomorrow.
Will post an update when it's fixed.
BJ
 

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bjedruszczak said:
It just happened today on my '07. Just noticed the speedometer needle is on 0 all the time, odometer not ticking miles either and the cruise will not engage.

Because it is still on warranty, I'm taking it to the dealer. IRV Seaver is closed Mondays, so I'll have to wait until tomorrow.
Will post an update when it's fixed.
BJ
BJ - I'm not sure, but you may have a different cause than the one described in this thread. Seems to me sumpthin' was changed after '04 or '05 that eliminated the wire/cable failing at that ferrule location. I don't have a clear recollection of it, but I'll do some searchin' and see what I find. Stay tuned, and prolly someone else with a better memory than me will be along shortly.
 

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Dick said:
BJ - I'm not sure, but you may have a different cause than the one described in this thread. Seems to me sumpthin' was changed after '04 or '05 that eliminated the wire/cable failing at that ferrule location. I don't have a clear recollection of it, but I'll do some searchin' and see what I find. Stay tuned, and prolly someone else with a better memory than me will be along shortly.
It changed in '02 Dick. That is when BMW dropped the speed sensor on the final drive, and now gets the speed signal from the ABS system.
 

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Well,
It's been a week since I left it at the dealer and so far they could not fix it.
They tried a connector and a new sensor, but that did not work. They may have to take it apart and look into the harness.
Next possible update day is this Wednesday - will keep you posted.
BJ
 

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Well, it's been almost 3 weeks since I left it at the dealer and the speedometer is still dead. They keep replacing parts whatever they may think of, including the turn signal relay, but it did not fix the problem so far.
I don't think they have any clue of what to do about it.
In this time frame, they could have replaced avery single part on the bike if they wanted to.
I think I'm going to take the bike back today and go another shop, hoping they have better trained or more experienced technicians.
This is getting plain ridiculous, fixing speedometer for 3 weeks!
BJ
 
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