Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Travelers Rest, SC, USA
Model: GL1800, GL1200, GL1000
I had to chase down an intermittent contact problem in the turn signal switch on my ’87 Aspencade not long ago, so this is all fresh in my mind.
My experience is that you cannot successfully clean the handlebar turn signal switch assembly on a GL1200 without taking it completely apart.
You can try spraying WD-40 and then contact cleaner into it from the outside, but that just never gets down to where the real dirt and the real problem is!
There is a small black plastic contact block (about 3/4inch square ) buried in the very bottom of the switch housing that contains about six or eight contacts. Over the years, this contact block gets so gummed up, and the contacts so dirty, that it will just not make a good electrical connection anymore.
Once completely apart, spray that contact block with a ton of WD-40 to first get all the dirt out. Then follow up with contact cleaner to remove the oxidization from the contacts themselves. Get some DeoxIt if you can find it. That stuff is the best. Then spray with WD-40 again before reassembly to help keep the moisture out. Use some dielectric grease before reassembly if you want.
You can try spraying without disassembly, but until you get to that contact block on the bottom and thoroughly clean it, you are not going to get it permanently fixed.
2006 Arctic White GL1800
1987 Black/Grey GL1200 Aspencade
1976 Special Candy Maroon GL1000 LTD
U.S. Navy SWO (1967-1976)