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Liam Nixon

Various Issues with ES and Speedometer on 450 Foreman

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So I've recently had a lot of trouble with my foreman, I was told to ask on here because it's apparently where the experts are so don't let me down haha, anyways in December the bike had an electrical hiccup of some kind, sudden stop, just dead, going along in 3rd and it just lost all power, pulled it back and it had blown multiple fuses, replaced them and my spark and electrical shift wasn't working, after tinkering my spark wasn't working but I got that going somehow, but my es is still not responsive, after testing everything I eliminated it down to either the gear position switch or the change control unit, I'm on the verge of just purchasing them but wanted to see if there was a way to tell which one was the faulty device, after temporarily putting it back together my speedometer stopped working, I had the rear crankcase cover off so the sensor was disconnected, it will read my speed from 2-4 km/h as long as I'm in first gear, but because the gear position switch isn't responding (I think) it only reads "1" in the gear slot on the dash, even in reverse, the only time it doesn't is when I'm in neutral which it reads "--" so that makes me think that it reads through the gear position switch that it's neutral, so basically I'm unsure of what to replace, the Speedometer head unit, the gear position switch, the change position switch, or all 3, in on a tight budget so I don't want to purchase anything I don't need, if you guys could give me some insight on what I need to do here that'd be greatly appreciated, anywho respond with anything that might help, cheers lads 👌

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It sounds like your wiring harness is damaged causing short circuits. If it is hacked up its best to just replace it rather than chase problems that can eventually eat your wallet..

 

The gear position switch is inside the rear alternator cover. When you put the alternator cover on the long end of the pin on the switch must be lined up with the "N" marked on the switch with the transmission in neutral. It sounds like your switch may have been damaged. You can test it using a multimeter. See the attachments... Let us know what you find out.

alternator-cover-gp-sw.png

 

gp-sw.png

 

EDIT: Welcome to ATV Honda!

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Hi , welcome to the forum

 

Did you know you can swop some parts and make turn that  ES into a foot shift 

 

or they just came out with this kit 

 

https://hondaesshiftkit.com/

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Thanks for the responses guys, you're probably right retro that the wiring harness could be out of whack, I'm hoping it's not because that's kind of a whole mess of business to get into but honestly probably the right thing to do really, but at this point in time the gear position switch I know is screwy because it doesn't show continuity in most of it and when I opened the rear crankcase cover it was very corroded looking and stiff to move, have a guy willing to mail me one for 25$ so I'll get that but I'm still not 100% if that'll fix all my issues, same fellow does have a change control unit but it's pricey, all I would like I'd to be able to get the ES system going again and see my speed, tight now I just removed the transfer gears behind the shift motor and stick a piece of flat bar on it so I could move, but long term I need that going again, so I'll replace the gear position switch and go from there, if the ES still isn't working I know it's the change control unit, then I'll figure out my speed issue.

And fishfiles that conversion kit actually seems pretty nifty, yeah I did know you could change some stuff around which is kind of what I temporarily did until I get it working again, but that conversion will basically allow me to do what I'm wanting to, avoid using a foot shift because it's hard on the gears (not really to bad but I've been told they are different than "s" gears and not really designed for a foot shifter) but that's actually a pretty good little rig, if I buy the gear position switch and it turns out faulty then I'm definitely considering just ordering that and being done with this whole affair haha.

Again thank you so much for your responses and if there's anymore wisdom or advice to lend I'm happy to hear it 👍

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I don't think you were following me on the conversion I mentioned  , they actually change the ES shift shaft to the foot shift shaft and the atv becomes a full fledged foot shift ---personally I am a 450 foot shift guy , but we have a couple of members here that have made that mod and pretty sure they would guide you thru it 

 

From the accent in you typing , I would guess you are from New Zealand , Australia or the UK ?  How's about going to the introduction thread and say hello to the gang 

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23 minutes ago, Fishfiles said:

I don't think you were following me on the conversion I mentioned  , they actually change the ES shift shaft to the foot shift shaft and the atv becomes a full fledged foot shift ---personally I am a 450 foot shift guy , but we have a couple of members here that have made that mod and pretty sure they would guide you thru it 

 

From the accent in you typing , I would guess you are from New Zealand , Australia or the UK ?  How's about going to the introduction thread and say hello to the gang 

No I guess I wasn't, I thought you just meant taking the gears out from behind the electric shift and slipping a wrench of something on the shaft, but no you mean like properly, not a bad idea at all, you would have to take off the rear crankcase cover and then the other cover too wouldn't you? More in-depth process I've heard.

Yeah looking back I should've gotten a footshift, didn't really do my research I guess, oh well.

It doesn't really matter to me what it is, es or s it just has to work and es if kinda, well, not, going and converting to es is probably the best idea, would you have to do anything else aside from switching out the shifter peg? Like I previously said I've already removed the gears behind the electric shift and just stuck a temporary wrench on it but I do want to do it right, thanks for the help again!

Also you were close, not one of the countries you guessed but it's still a Commonwealth, Canada eh, just a hop across the water, and thanks for warm welcome, It was suggested to me to ask on here by AKATV, was asking sane questions on hondaforeman.com and was getting nowhere, but already I've made more progress on here than I did after eating a month on there so thanks for that, yeah I definitely know where to go if I've got questions now, thanks again guys! I know I'll figure it out, either go foot shift, use the ES conversion, or fix the original system, thanks!

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eh !!!  --- Close ----  I think,  we here in the USA use to be  a Commonwealth at one time , things changed and I think it all was over a spot of  tea ??? LOL ---  

 

 I am sure we can get a couple of people  on this site right now ,  that has done it ,  to give you the low down of what all needs to be swopped out , I have read the procedure and it doesn't sound too bad at all , I might even be able to pull it off ... 

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5 minutes ago, Fishfiles said:

eh !!!  --- Close ----  I think,  we here in the USA use to be  a Commonwealth at one time , things changed and I think it all was over a spot of  tea ??? LOL ---  

 

 I am sure we can get a couple of people  on this site right now ,  that has done it ,  to give you the low down of what all needs to be swopped out , I have read the procedure and it doesn't sound too bad at all , I might even be able to pull it off ... 

Haha that's about right, didn't like the taxes so you turned the harbour to tea, all went from there haha

And yeah just looked and doesn't seem that bad, so I'll get that done, change the gear position switch just so I can tell what gear I is in and then try to figure the speedometer I guess 🤷‍♂️

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Posted (edited)

Welcome to the forum and glad to to see you made it over here you are in the right place for sure!

Happy that you are making progress, I just had a corroded gear position swith and my Rancher 350(nonES) as well-

The ATV was hot wired to start in any gear as would not show "N" or "R"

I tested the switch and could not get continuity and thought someone had it installed it incorrectly and broke the "N" pin off of the switch inside of case....or my shift drum was broken(sigh....)

The switch would not read continuity, so I opened case and removed it and the pin was not broken, still would not test right on the bench so I opened it up and it was  all corroded inside

Ordered a used one off fleabay for 5.00 and back in business-Hope your fix is just as easy

Either way we will help you get it all sorted out

If you have any issues with speedometer I can help you out just let me know

Welcome aboard!

Edited by AKATV

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The 450ES and 450 footshifts have different gears in the transmissions, so were it mine I’d keep it an ES and fix it. 

 

If you weren’t in Canada throwing used OEM parts at it wouldn’t be too expensive, but shipping stuff up there would make the slow, methodical approach a better option.

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1 hour ago, AKATV said:

Welcome to the forum and glad to to see you made it over here you are in the right place for sure!

Happy that you are making progress, I just had a corroded gear position swith and my Rancher 350(nonES) as well-

The ATV was hot wired to start in any gear as would not show "N" or "R"

I tested the switch and could not get continuity and thought someone had it installed it incorrectly and broke the "N" pin off of the switch inside of case....or my shift drum was broken(sigh....)

The switch would not read continuity, so I opened case and removed it and the pin was not broken, still would not test right on the bench so I opened it up and it was  all corroded inside

Ordered a used one off fleabay for 5.00 and back in business-Hope your fix is just as easy

Either way we will help you get it all sorted out

If you have any issues with speedometer I can help you out just let me know

Welcome aboard!

Thanks for telling me about this site, and yeah my switch isn't reading right so I'm going to replace than and then if all else fails it only leaves the change control unit, so I'd either replace that or get the kit mentioned by @Fishfiles, I'd like to convert it to footshift but like @jeepwm69 mentioned here:

 

44 minutes ago, jeepwm69 said:

The 450ES and 450 footshifts have different gears in the transmissions, so were it mine I’d keep it an ES and fix it. 

 

If you weren’t in Canada throwing used OEM parts at it wouldn’t be too expensive, but shipping stuff up there would make the slow, methodical approach a better option.

They have different gears so it may not be the best idea, but nonetheless it's still an option if nothing else works, basically right now I'm gonna replace the gear position switch and then see what that does for me, if that doesn't work I'll either buy that conversion or order a change control unit, they're both roughly the same price but the conversion is a sure-fire solution, at the end of the day I just want to get the ES working, and see what gear I'm in and my speed, easier said than done right? And yeah jeep up here in Canada everything is expensive, the dollar is crap and current events aren't helping 😬

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You also might be able to find good used parts on ebay, there are a lot of sellers in Canada that have seen thru the years

Also you might try Kijiji, which is similar Craigslist but in for Canada only. I found a lot of parts I could use on there,

but the shipping for me was too expensive or not worthwhile to US destinations

 

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Posted (edited)

So I'm talking to a guy right now who has a gear position switch, a change control switch, and a speedometer unit, but I'm unsure if I should just purchase the original gear position switch that I needed or to get those parts that I'm unsure about, what would you guys do? I just want to spend the minimum amount possible, is there a way to test the change control unit without the gear position switch working?

Edited by Liam Nixon
Misspelled

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Test your gear position switch first. If yours is bad replace it. Then prep your ES system according to the guide I posted. Then if there are any remaining issues we can troubleshoot those individually. This way you won't be wasting money on stuff you may not need. We can help ya fix it!

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1 hour ago, retro said:

Test your gear position switch first. If yours is bad replace it. Then prep your ES system according to the guide I posted. Then if there are any remaining issues we can troubleshoot those individually. This way you won't be wasting money on stuff you may not need. We can help ya fix it!

Sounds like a plan! Ordered the switch and it should be here in a few days, also ordered the clutch adjustment thingy because mine is seized and stripped 

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You can check your shift motor by connecting it directly to the battery with jumpers. If it shifts then you know that it is good. Connect the orange wire to the positive side of the battery and the green wire to the negative side. I was dealing with my foreman 450es it was totally unresponsive.  I did all the troubleshooting tests and checked out every wire and connection on my foreman. I finally found out that the little black sensor that has a 3 prong plug on the end of it which is mounted on top of the shift control motor was bad. I changed that sensor and it works like a brand new one. Hope this helps you with your bike.

Thanks, 

Shawn

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Sorry for the hiatus, things have been busy, anyways yeah so I installed the gear position switch today, put it all back together, and still nothing, the gears still say -- when in rev, neutral, or 5th, the only time it's show any numbers is when it's in 1st-4th and it only says 1st while in those gears, is there something I have to reset to try and get it to work? Or should I just hang my head and accept that I can't see what gear the bike is in, functionality hasn't been affected, but I still would like to see what gear I'm in if at all possible, any suggestions?

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Just now, Liam Nixon said:

Sorry for the hiatus, things have been busy, anyways yeah so I installed the gear position switch today, put it all back together, and still nothing, the gears still say -- when in rev, neutral, or 5th, the only time it's show any numbers is when it's in 1st-4th and it only says 1st while in those gears, is there something I have to reset to try and get it to work? Or should I just hang my head and accept that I can't see what gear the bike is in, functionality hasn't been affected, but I still would like to see what gear I'm in if at all possible, any suggestions?

Also wanted to say yes, I tested the shift motor and it works great 

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Hi Liam 

Sorry to hear you are having issues still- are you getting continuity at the new switch as per manual

Also what year was you Foreman 450ES -does your gear position switch  have the small 4 wire white connector or the big gray plug?

Did you happen to do the continuity tests that retro had posted above?

You should also be able to also ground each pin on the harness side of that plug to ensure the N light comes on and N position on speedometer is working

as well as the same for R and 5th, then you will know that side is good and can work on why the change switch side is not providing ground and we can take it from there

 

By the way I grew up in ME just across border from New Brunswick- Mom is from St Stephen NB-  used to sneak across as young man in high school as it was a little easier to look 19 than 21 to buy beer-LOL most of our teachers or friend parents worked the border crossing , so they would just wave us across and tell us to stay out of trouble -ah simpler times......

Labbatts blue and export "A"s haha

 

 Anyways, let us know how you are coming and we'll get this figured out  ... Eh? ..lol

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33 minutes ago, AKATV said:

Hi Liam 

Sorry to hear you are having issues still- are you getting continuity at the new switch as per manual

Also what year was you Foreman 450ES -does your gear position switch  have the small 4 wire white connector or the big gray plug?

Did you happen to do the continuity tests that retro had posted above?

You should also be able to also ground each pin on the harness side of that plug to ensure the N light comes on and N position on speedometer is working

as well as the same for R and 5th, then you will know that side is good and can work on why the change switch side is not providing ground and we can take it from there

 

By the way I grew up in ME just across border from New Brunswick- Mom is from St Stephen NB-  used to sneak across as young man in high school as it was a little easier to look 19 than 21 to buy beer-LOL most of our teachers or friend parents worked the border crossing , so they would just wave us across and tell us to stay out of trouble -ah simpler times......

Labbatts blue and export "A"s haha

 

 Anyways, let us know how you are coming and we'll get this figured out  ... Eh? ..lol

Upon testing it I have the continuity in the correct places, grey has continuity in reverse, yadda yadda, however I was confused by the diagram whether it meant I should have continuity in all colours in reverse, like when the line goes between the circles on the diagram, or I should only have continuity specifically when I'm in that gear indicated by where the circle on the diagram is, either way I'm getting continuity where I think I should, and when the gear position switch is plugged in and put in neutral, the green dash light is shining more than the red, and vice versa when in reverse, and I can still start it when in neutral with the starter, so the system still does know what gear it's in, is this a speedometer unit failure? Like would that explain why I lost both gear position and speed at the same time basically?

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Sounds like if you are getting the Neutral light and Reverse light, but the speedometer is not showing N or R on the speedometer you could have a 

speedometer issue.

When I have a speedometer on the bench completely separate from the ATV and powered up, as soon as you ground the wire for Neutral or Reverse the speedometer LED will come on and display will show the appropriate N or R etc...

Can you post a picture here of what its doing in N or R showing the display?

I have been repairing these for years and have seen most speedometer faults and might recognize better if I can see a picture or two

 

Also, in the diagram, it is correct that you should have continuity for the circles and the points where the line that connects them together

its important to also check the points for no continuity where there is no line/circle, as sometimes you can have a short that will cause an issue as well

Edited by AKATV

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13 minutes ago, AKATV said:

Sounds like if you are getting the Neutral light and Reverse light, but the speedometer is not showing N or R on the speedometer you could have a 

speedometer issue.

When I have a speedometer on the bench completely separate from the ATV and powered up, as soon as you ground the wire for Neutral or Reverse the speedometer LED will come on and display will show the appropriate N or R etc...

Can you post a picture here of what its doing in N or R showing the display?

I have been repairing these for years and have seen most speedometer faults and might recognize better if I can see a picture or two

 

Also, in the diagram, it is correct that you should have continuity for the circles and the points where the line that connects them together

its important to also check the points for no continuity where there is no line/circle, as sometimes you can have a short that will cause an issue as well

Okay, I have continuity only where the circles are on the diagram, I have no continuity anywhere else, only when it is specifically in the correct gear such as grey only has continuity in reverse, and LB only has continuity in 5th, nowhere else. If I understand what your saying correctly it shouldn't be that way?

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13 minutes ago, AKATV said:

Sounds like if you are getting the Neutral light and Reverse light, but the speedometer is not showing N or R on the speedometer you could have a 

speedometer issue.

When I have a speedometer on the bench completely separate from the ATV and powered up, as soon as you ground the wire for Neutral or Reverse the speedometer LED will come on and display will show the appropriate N or R etc...

Can you post a picture here of what its doing in N or R showing the display?

I have been repairing these for years and have seen most speedometer faults and might recognize better if I can see a picture or two

 

Also, in the diagram, it is correct that you should have continuity for the circles and the points where the line that connects them together

its important to also check the points for no continuity where there is no line/circle, as sometimes you can have a short that will cause an issue as well

Okay, I have continuity only where the circles are on the diagram, I have no continuity anywhere else, only when it is specifically in the correct gear such as grey only has continuity in reverse, and LB only has continuity in 5th, nowhere else. If I understand what your saying correctly it shouldn't be that way?

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