From:Keith Electronic:kehughes -A- windstream.net
Subject:RE: RE: Light/wiring/ignition switch issue??? Date:Mon Feb 13 21:08:36 2012
Response to:16975
Thanks for your help. I thought thats how it was supposed to be but wasn't sure. Now Im positive the switch is defective and will tear into it. What's crazy and what had me doubting myself is that I have an extra switch and it is defective in exactly the same way. I thought what are the chances of both being messed up. Sounds like about 100%. Thanks again to you and to Dave!

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Keith,
In the diagram that Dave posted the #4 terminal is the tail light feed, you should have 6 volts on that one with the switch turned one click counterclockwise or two clicks clockwise. The #2 terminal is the feed to the dimmer switch on the handlebars (and then to the headlight), it should have 6 volts with the switch turned two clicks clockwise. #5 is the ignition, power to the coil. #1 is always hot, 6 volts straight from the battery. #3 is not used.
So, you probably have a dirty switch. Those switches are very simple and almost bulletproof. The problem you are having is common on bikes that have sat unused for a long period of time. The cure is to pull the switch out of the tank and clean it. Once you have it upside down it will be easy to see how it works, one of the common tricks is to simply rotate the contact bar 180 degrees so that it will contact on a fresh unworn surface. The attached page is from a big-twin service manual but the switch is identical to a lightweight switch.
Hope this helps!
Mike
p.s. for "dummy" Dave, it might not hurt to add service manual page to our library
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trying to figure out why my headlight doesn't work. Is the first click on ignition switch to give starting circuit power and the second click for lights? If I short the hot post(front of switch,2nd from left) on the ignition switch to the light circuit post(front of switch,far right post) on ignition switch, the lights work and will turn on and off with the handlebar switch. Does this sound like a ignition switch issue? other possibles?