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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I bought my Vintage three months ago and have 2900 miles on it. This morning while riding to work in the dark all of the lights shut off. Headlight, running lights and dash lights. Everything! About one second later everything came back on except the running lights. The running light switch was red instead of green indicating they where turned off. I switched them on and they lit up. Rode the remaining twenty miles with no issues. I had no codes at all. I did not accidentally hit the kill switch, my hands never moved a bit other than tensing up a little when I was in total darkness. Also may have tightened up other places! It was a very dark road! Anyway, has anyone else had this happen? Any suggestions to check? Bad ground somewhere? Thanks.

Mark
 

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I experienced the same thing last year when my Chieftain was a few k into riding. I had to pull over, turn off the bike, let it reset, then start it back up before my lights came back on. A trip to and inspection by the dealership, along with a call to Polaris, brought about the standard "first time we've heard of this happening" followed by zero follow up. It happened one other time during start up where the lights simply did not come on and I restarted the bike to get them to switch on. Good luck finding the gremlin.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I experienced the same thing last year when my Chieftain was a few k into riding. I had to pull over, turn off the bike, let it reset, then start it back up before my lights came back on. A trip to and inspection by the dealership, along with a call to Polaris, brought about the standard "first time we've heard of this happening" followed by zero follow up. It happened one other time during start up where the lights simply did not come on and I restarted the bike to get them to switch on. Good luck finding the gremlin.

Thanks Loki, sounds pretty similar. Kinda sounding like maybe the relay for the lights may have a bad connection??
 

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Since mine didn't flicker off and on, I attributed it to the computer not completing a check sum for powering the lights when the bike was started. Basically, the bike's computer had a brain fart.
 

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Had similar problems, started with the Aux. lights going on and off, finally had to replace the voltage regulator (under warranty, but a two week wait for parts). I would suggest you keep a close eye on your voltage and if it falls below 14.4 while underway, say 12.1 or so, take it in before it quits on you when you need it the most.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Had similar problems, started with the Aux. lights going on and off, finally had to replace the voltage regulator (under warranty, but a two week wait for parts). I would suggest you keep a close eye on your voltage and if it falls below 14.4 while underway, say 12.1 or so, take it in before it quits on you when you need it the most.
Will do Indijoe. Thanks!
 

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I had a similar situation. My dealer installed trickle charger ends on the battery post and around 3500 miles my screen on the chieftain started fading in and out and the auxiliary highway lights would just turn off by themselves. Finally decided to take the seat off and noticed the negative screw on the battery was loose, went a little further and saw the same with the positive side. Put a rachett an extension an socket on both and all was good again. Just a reminder to be careful with the EMC an not get too close to your extension when tighten the positive side.
This my not have been your solution but maybe help someone.
The more I ride this machine the more I love it.
 

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I had exactly the same experience...once. Scared the crap out of me as it was a very dark night on a very dark road with the addition of a car behind me. I called my dealer and got much the same response and with my 500 mile check...nothing was found amiss. 2k miles later it has not happened again. The only thing I can add to the possible cause of my gremlin is I was toggling between low and high beam in rapidly as cars would approach and pass. I have since almost stopped using the high beams.
 

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Don't know if anyone is still looking at this thread or not; also I don't know if Polaris is using the same electronics as previous Indian management or not. I've had a problem with my 1999 Chief and I think I have it narrowed down to the electronic harness controller (EHC). Sometimes while riding the bike just shuts off without warning: engine stops and all electronics stop functioning. Fortunately the engine does not lock up and I am able to coast to a safe stopping area. After a short break (varies from a few minutes to an hour or two) and manipulating the wire harness I can restart the engine. I have tried multiple fixes without success: relay switch, ignition switch, voltage regulator, multiple headlight replacements. It was suggested that I had a loose relay switch that was possibly vibrating loose due to engine vibrations and so I replaced the relay switch connected to the EHC; I also secured the EHC with zip ties. That fix worked for some time but the problem returned and more frequently. It was suggested that the key ignition switch was loose or had a short in it and so I replaced it, unfortunately no resolution to the problem. Also it was suggested the voltage regulator was bad and so I replaced it and again no resolution. I should add that during all this my low beam headlight never worked; high beams work without fail. I tried several bulb replacements but no low beams. I replaced the wire connection within the headlight housing since I did notice some melting plastic at the connection (possible short). It was again suggested that the electronics had a short in the system causing the EHC to cut power to the bike and that the EHC would restart after turning the power off for several minutes. The headlight fixes did not solve the problem. ( I will also add there are splices in the wiring so the wires are not solid from the EHC to the switches, eventually I will try to rewire the whole system to maintain a consistent flow of electricity.) Since none of the above attempts have worked I decided to check each connection within the EHC and discovered that the low beam connection had no flow. ... This is where my attempts have slowed since an EHC costs about $300 and a rewire costs even more. I will add more when I am able to replace the EHC.
 

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Thanks Loki, sounds pretty similar. Kinda sounding like maybe the relay for the lights may have a bad connection??
The Spirit Lake Indians don't actually have relays, its all controlled through the ECU computer. I've experienced a number of electronic glitches on my Chieftain #873 that clear when the power is switched off and on again. They seem to occur more in colder temperatures.
--- Randall
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
The Spirit Lake Indians don't actually have relays, its all controlled through the ECU computer. I've experienced a number of electronic glitches on my Chieftain #873 that clear when the power is switched off and on again. They seem to occur more in colder temperatures.
--- Randall
Thanks for the education Randall. Fortunately it hasn't happened since, I would hate to have to cycle power in the dark at sixty miles an hour in the cold on a regular basis!
 

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I am just about pissed off at my bike..... had a weird electrical problem show up while I was in Sturgis this week. Headlight and Driving lights were not working, took it in to the shop, paid them to find and fix the problem, They said it was loose connections at the battery.... trailered the bike home, rode it all day today in 100+ degree heat, got it home and parked it, waited about a half hour and decided to move the bike, fired it up and the codes for low beam, high beam , left and right driving light came back and no headlights!!!!

Fired the bike up this morning, everything worked again... rode with my wife up towards Kansas City, worked well until I fired the bike up to come home, no headlight or driving lights again... not sure if it is heat related, as yesterday and today it was up over 100 degrees. gonna let the bike cool off and tear into it to see if it is still battery connections or attempt to figure out any other connections that it may be.
 

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I am just about pissed off at my bike..... had a weird electrical problem show up while I was in Sturgis this week. Headlight and Driving lights were not working, took it in to the shop, paid them to find and fix the problem, They said it was loose connections at the battery.... trailered the bike home, rode it all day today in 100+ degree heat, got it home and parked it, waited about a half hour and decided to move the bike, fired it up and the codes for low beam, high beam , left and right driving light came back and no headlights!!!!

Fired the bike up this morning, everything worked again... rode with my wife up towards Kansas City, worked well until I fired the bike up to come home, no headlight or driving lights again... not sure if it is heat related, as yesterday and today it was up over 100 degrees. gonna let the bike cool off and tear into it to see if it is still battery connections or attempt to figure out any other connections that it may be.
I've noticed there's a part of the wire harness is clipped to the rear cylinder head cover could the heat from it have an affect
 

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Took it to the dealer, they found a fried terminal where the wiring harness connects to the VCM. They are replacing the VCM and harness under warranty....
 

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So, after returning to Sturgis without my bike for a week to do the tear down, I return home thinking that my bike should be ready soon. I called the dealer and they have the new harness, but no new VCM and no idea when they will be getting it. So I called Polaris Customer Service and find out that the ship date isn't until Aug 28. AUG 28?!?!?!?! If I had wanted Harley style service I would have bought a Harley! This is really upsetting, and got me considering getting rid of the bike! Hear that Polaris???? Not the proper way to treat a customer!!! My only hope is that the dealer decides t take pity on me and pull a VCM from one of their bikes and use it to get mine running. We shall see how that pans out.
 

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So, after returning to Sturgis without my bike for a week to do the tear down, I return home thinking that my bike should be ready soon. I called the dealer and they have the new harness, but no new VCM and no idea when they will be getting it. So I called Polaris Customer Service and find out that the ship date isn't until Aug 28. AUG 28?!?!?!?! If I had wanted Harley style service I would have bought a Harley! This is really upsetting, and got me considering getting rid of the bike! Hear that Polaris???? Not the proper way to treat a customer!!! My only hope is that the dealer decides t take pity on me and pull a VCM from one of their bikes and use it to get mine running. We shall see how that pans out.
Keep us in the loop
 

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I had this happen on my 2014 Vintage yesterday. I have just over 1k miles on it (yes i know... VERY low milage... I'll explain in a little bit). I left for work at about 5:20 AM yesterday and about a half mile into my ride to work all my lights went out and then came back on. All console lights came on like I had just turned on the bike and the driving lights stayed off till I turned them back on. Headlight also cycled... I called the dealership today and I'm going to take it in and have them check for any "ghost codes" that may have been left without an actual code readout on the console. I'll let y'all know if they find anything.

So... Now you want to know why I have pretty much no miles on my beautiful bike! Well it seems that the bike was purchased new by a little old man that used to own Indians back in the day and he wanted to own one of the new ones. He bought it and had it in his garage for over a year and then called the dealership one day and said come get it I'm ready to sell... It's a numbered bike and before I took it for a test ride it had 4 original miles on the bike.... :cool:
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I had this happen on my 2014 Vintage yesterday. I have just over 1k miles on it (yes i know... VERY low milage... I'll explain in a little bit). I left for work at about 5:20 AM yesterday and about a half mile into my ride to work all my lights went out and then came back on. All console lights came on like I had just turned on the bike and the driving lights stayed off till I turned them back on. Headlight also cycled... I called the dealership today and I'm going to take it in and have them check for any "ghost codes" that may have been left without an actual code readout on the console. I'll let y'all know if they find anything.

So... Now you want to know why I have pretty much no miles on my beautiful bike! Well it seems that the bike was purchased new by a little old man that used to own Indians back in the day and he wanted to own one of the new ones. He bought it and had it in his garage for over a year and then called the dealership one day and said come get it I'm ready to sell... It's a numbered bike and before I took it for a test ride it had 4 original miles on the bike.... :cool:

Sounds just like my experience, I was about three miles into the ride. I wonder if this is more common than we know since most people don't ride in the dark that often. You would probably not even notice it in daylight until you realized your driving lights where off. Cant be too serious though since I'm the original poster and it hasn't happened since. I ride in the dark to work every morning, in winter months on the way home too!
 
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