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  #1  
Old 9th September 2021
mccullpl mccullpl is offline
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Default 2003 883, no spark, dead tach

I searched, but couldn't find an issue quite like mine. I hadn't started my bike this year, so I dug it out last week, and it fired right up. Let it idle for several minutes, then rode it down the street and back. By the time I got back (about a 2 minute ride) it had started sputtering, and died. After that, it wouldn't start. No spark. I noticed with the key on, the tach was dim, and reading negative, so I though maybe it had crapped out, and was shorting out the coil, so I removed the harness from the tach. The tach stunk like a blown cap, so I figured that was my problem. The bike fired up immediately, so I let it idle for several minutes, and was planning to go get gas. I tried to push the choke in, but didn't want to idle, and died. I haven't got it started again. Still no spark. Measured the coil, and it reads the correct resistance. The voltages to the coil seem ok. I'm guessing ignition module, but haven't seen a failure mode quite like this...especially the tach crapping out. Any suggestions on what else to check before I order a new ignition module?

Thanks!
Pat
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  #2  
Old 9th September 2021
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When you're having issues with the electrical system, use this Sportsterpedia section about
checking the battery cables, voltages and grounds - DO THIS BEFORE ANYTHING ELSE:
http://sportsterpedia.com/doku.php/t...place_to_start

The OEM nosecone ignitions are a known weak link. You might try spraying the module with COLD SPRAY to see if it is failing due to the heat. If heat related, when you spray it, the module may begin working and producing a spark. If failing due to heat, it would still need to be replaced.

After a year of sitting, I would also check the vacuum hoses, the petcock vacuum diaphragm and maybe pull the carb for a thorough examine/rebuild.

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Old 10th September 2021
mccullpl mccullpl is offline
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Thanks...I went through the Sportsterpedia page first, and came to the conclusion that it's probably the ignition module. I'm definitely getting fuel, but not getting spark. It's not a heat related issue...or at least not starting after setting for a day at ~75 degrees.
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Old 10th September 2021
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Well - Then you probably are on the right track - The Ultima ignition module is the one most often chosen by folks on this forum:

http://sportsterpedia.com/doku.php/t...-_nosecone_icm


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Old 10th September 2021
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But being a rigid mount you might check a bit more. With my 2000 it was a strong vibrator and I had issues with fractured wires. The most common, four times actually-I’m a slow learner, it was one of the small gage wires dropping down from the back tube to the coil. I learned hat pulling extra slack out of the harness and adding some esses allowed the wires to flex without fracture breaking. Another time it was a fractured negative cable running through Florida going to the Keys. A lot of bikes came from the factory with taunt wires. But Sportsterpedia is and will be one of your best resources.
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Last edited by sportsterpaul; 10th September 2021 at 23:21..
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Old 10th September 2021
mccullpl mccullpl is offline
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I just ordered the Ultima ignition module. If that's not the fix, I'll start looking for broken wires. Thanks guys!
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I think it was the pink and the white ones if memory serves me correctly.
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Old 3 Weeks Ago
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Just to follow up, replacing the ignition module fixed it
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Thanks for that, let the bonding continue!,,
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mccullpl View Post
Just to follow up, replacing the ignition module fixed it
Thanks for completing the story --- Now how about a picture of the bike --- We love to see what folks are riding...


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