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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Howdy folks.

Something happened with my bike ('16 Roadmaster) recently that I though it would be something interesting to share with you. I´ll tell the whole story just to contextualize (the solution is at the end).

My bike is on the third FOB so far. The first replacement was made by the bike´s first owner, so I got the bike with two FOBs. The problem with the first FOB was that it wasn´t holding its battery charge (put on a new CR2032 and it lasted for only two weeks - like it wasn´t "turning off" when away from the bike). The second, I accidentally damaged when I replaced its battery (broke the soldering on the battery connector). Then I got a new FOB and had it programmed at the nearest Indian authorized service center, which is about 150mi from where I live.

This was accomplished about two months ago, and it was working just fine so far. Then, another day, I went on a small ride , went back home and when I tried to start the bike the next day, the FOB key wasn´t being recognized by the bike anymore.

At first, I thought on the FOB key battery (as the part was probably on stock for quite some time and the battery might have degraded). It didn´t solve the problem, in fact, testing the FOB battery on the multimeter the voltage was just about right.

Totally p***** off, thinking I´d had to lose another whole day to go to the nearest dealer to reprogram the FOB (a job that costed me 100 USD, plus gas and toll booths on the way to the dealer) ... well... been riding the bike using the PIN to start it for the last three weeks. I´m kinda used to it, but I was enraged that the bike was on its third FOB key and going to the fourth (for which I´d probably have to wait some 60 days to delivery as Brazilian Polaris representatives have almost nothing in local warehouses).

Yesterday (still not the solution, I´m just putting into context), I thought about the FOB antenna receiver (the small rectangular box that´s near the VCM). Well... my thoughts were... the underside of my seat is really cramped up in wiring (illuminator modules and other stuff), and as during the last ride where the FOB was still working, I did take some major bumps. I wonder if maybe the seat wasn´t properly positioned and might have damaged the FOB antenna wiring.

So, today, I took out the seat to check the wiring. It was in totally perfect order.

Then, EUREKA! I remembered about the horn issues (VCM wrongly accusing shorted horn) I had a few months ago (after taking out the Buffalo horn - due to malfunction - and putting the stock back on). What I did back then? I did reset the system. I disconnected the battery and the horn started working again.

So, I thought: I wonder if doing the same will "reboot" the ECM (afterall, the FOB key code is programmed into it).

Taking out the seat, the first thing I remembered was about the risk on frying the VCM when disconnecting the battery. Then, what I did: I simply unplugged the three connectors that go into the bike´s VCM. I didn´t even bother to disconnect the battery, I only disconnected the VCM from the system (it might be wise to do it before messing with the battery, instead of risking a short circuit!) and let the bike "rest" for two minutes.

Plugged the VCM back in and then... voilà!!!! My FOB key is now working perfectly again.

So, in the event of your FOB key is no longer being recognized by the bike (even with a good battery), BEFORE spending good money taking the bike to a shop or dealer, simply disconnect the VCM and let it rest for a few minutes (two minutes is enough).

Edit: Just pull out the VCM fuse as suggested by Demolition Man below. No need to take the seat out.

It might just do the trick for you, as it did for me.
 

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Thanks for the tip!

If you have the minimalist of soldering skills. It would have been very easy to fix the one you broke. I've done it a couple times to fellow rider's FOB's with no issues or return customers.
 

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German Rider
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Maybe not a bad idea, but why removing the seat, etc.

Just remove the left side cover and pull the vcm fuse. Wait about your 2 suggested minutes and the result could/will be the same - way easier.


Cu,
Sven
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Maybe not a bad idea, but why removing the seat, etc.

Just remove the left side cover and pull the vcm fuse. Wait about your 2 suggested minutes and the result could/will be the same - way easier.


Cu,
Sven
never thought of that. to be honest I didn´t even considered "resetting" the VCM before I took the seat out. My first thought was to check the FOB receiver for damage.

But I did add your suggestion to the original post, though. :) MOST DEFINETELY a time saver!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for the tip!

If you have the minimalist of soldering skills. It would have been very easy to fix the one you broke. I've done it a couple times to fellow rider's FOB's with no issues or return customers.
Let´s say I don´t have problem with soldering wires, but when it comes to circuit boards (specially tiny ones like the fob key board) I´m the worst. LOL.

I did , in fact, throw the broken FOB away last week.
 

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Let´s say I don´t have problem with soldering wires, but when it comes to circuit boards (specially tiny ones like the fob key board) I´m the worst. LOL.

I did , in fact, throw the broken FOB away last week.
Before attempting to solder the FOB. I might have only soldered a handful of wires in my lifetime and never a circuit board. I rose to the occasion for a buddy of mine, trying to save him whatever it cost to buy a new one. Plus, it was already broken so what's the worst I could do? So I made the attempt. I was shocked at how well I did and the connection looked better than a new one. So when I came across a few others. I did the same and it never seemed to be an issue.

Edit: Thought I would share the steps I took to accomplish this in hopes that it will help others.

In the case of my friends FOB. The entire battery terminal popped off the circuit board.
I set the terminal to the side and grabbed the solder iron and solder. Build up some solder on the iron's tip, not too much to cause a drop to drip off, but enough to have a dab sit on the tip. Then touch the iron to the board in the correct spot. Immediately set the battery terminal onto the board. Then I repeated the step with getting a bit of solder on the iron and touch it to the tab on the battery terminal you just soldered down. This bit of solder will coat around the connection tab and melt into the first drip of solder you first put down. Making a strong connection.

Another way this can be done when the terminal is completely free from the circuit board. Would be to drip the bit of solder onto the battery terminal tabs and let dry (while off the board). Then place the battery terminal on the circuit board and then touch the terminal tabs with the iron, heating it up and melting the solder you had placed on the underside. Let dry and done.

Hope that makes sense and will help others save from buying a new FOB. And like I said earlier. It's already broke, so how can you go wrong? Gotta at least try!
 
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