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I have a 2004 vstar 1100, the ignition switch will shut motor off, but even with the key removed my headlight and break light will stay on. And ideas? Thought ignition switch may be bad, but wouldn't the bike not shut off as well? Thanks in advance.
 

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did this just start happening by itself, or was it like this when you bought the bike?

did you change the wiring for something, and then this happened?

the brake light and headlight are two separate circuits - sounds like something got into a wire harness and chewed or damaged some insulation, shorting wires together?!
 

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did you try toggling the key a few times?

I know the service manual for the 650 can be found free online in a PDF file. If you can find the service manual for the 1100, the schematics for the wiring are on the last pages.

It would tell you if the key switch has different contacts for the lights and the ignition, that would allow the lights to stay on but the engine stops.

I would assume when you say the brake light says on its really the tail light? That would be a single point failure because the tail light and head light are on the same circuit. I assume you disconnected the battery to get the lights to go off. If you hook the battery back up, if the lights come on again, or they stay off, that is more information (relay hanging up or a shorted wire...)..

If you hook up the battery and the fault is still there, see if you can tell if its the brake light or the tail light - grab the front brake and see if the light gets brighter.
 

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someone else may jump in and comment about this: Im pretty sure the headlight on the 1100 has a relay, and it does not turn on until the motor is started. That relay may be sticking on, and not actually be powered by the ignition switch.

Having it stuck on might also back feed the tail light. I'd look into that, it would be a single failure that explains what you are seeing.

dont just assume its the ignition switch, its not easy to get the thing out of the frame.
 

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Headlight comes on with the key on my 2000 1100
 

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I think we had this conversation about a year ago. The early 1100s had the headlight tied to the key-on. At some point after 2000 they kept it off till the motor started. I dont think we ever chased down how it was implemented but we had people going out and starting their bikes and watching the headlight. Some yes, some no.
 

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I think we had this conversation about a year ago. The early 1100s had the headlight tied to the key-on. At some point after 2000 they kept it off till the motor started. I dont think we ever chased down how it was implemented but we had people going out and starting their bikes and watching the headlight. Some yes, some no.

All the 650s come on with the key. Im pretty sure its not the same on all 1100's. I dont know what words to search to find that thread.
I think this is the thread KCW was thinking about.

https://www.starbikeforums.com/forums/49-v-star/109138-when-does-headlight-come.html?highlight=Headlight
 
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