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How To: Install Heated Grips [56k warning]

Discussion in 'Modifications and Projects' started by ginji, Jun 19, 2007.

  1. Anyway, I installed my heated grips today, so I figured I'd write up a bit of a how to.

    What I've used:

    Oxford Hotgrips
    Suzuki GS500F

    Installation is a fairly easy, and I'll start with the switch and the electrical wiring.

    I removed the front and side fairings from the bike to get easy access to the wiring, you don't have to do this, but it does make life easier. While I had the fairings off I did some other things as well.


    Install the controller where ever you want it. I've chosen to use the supplied bracket, but you could use the double sided sticky tap they give to put it anywhere.


    Find a suitable place to wire in your live wire (that's the red one). I've just put it straight on the wire leading from the ignition to all the other electrical components. If you have a lot of electrical load on your bike, then I suggest you use a relay in this place, and wire the grips straight to the battery, using the relay to make sure they get turned off when you turn the ignition off. That way you don't have the load of the grips on the main fuse either. The GS doesn't have that much load, so I've just connected it directly. Future electrical mods will go direct on the battery though.


    The orange wire is the one we want in this case. The red one is the one that goes from the battery to the ignition in the first place and as such is always live. These cables on the GS are on the left hand side of the bike, and go over the motor to the right hand side.

    Splice your cable onto this cable. I've used some auto connectors to do this as it makes life easier rather then having to strip the cable and solder it in place. It's easier to protect from water as well.


    Tape up the connection for some added weather proofing.

    Next you want to find your earth. I've picked the earth that leads to the head lights in this case as it was the largest earth cable that was nearby and easily accessible. Same thing as for the live wire, splice it in and tape it up.


    I've left the cable as it's full length, but you could trim it to the required length, but you'll have to reposition the fuse holder for this model of heated grips. Tidy up the cables and make sure you can turn the handle bars to full lock both ways without the cables getting in the way or pulling. Connect it up to the controller and test to make sure it all works.


    No pics for the next bit, but that doesn't really matter...

    The grips themselves are pretty easy to put on. Take off the old grips (cut them off if you don't care for them, or get a screwdriver and pull em off.

    The right hand side has a plastic thing under it, for the throttle. You might need to take a knife to it to remove any raised bits. I took a dremel to mine and made short work of the raised bits that got in the way. If you're using a knife, use a bit of fine-ish sand paper to smooth the bits you've cut off out.

    This is what my throttle slider looked like after I got to it:


    There's also a smaller collar at the base. Make sure it's clean before you try and glue the grip on, I used isopropanol (rubbing alcohol) to clean the slider, and the inside of the grip.

    Put the grips on, find a position that the wires don't get in the way, take em off, put the glue on and put them back on. Resist the temptation to go for a ride and wait for the glue to set and cure, it typically takes 24 hours depending on the glue. (I know, it's hard having to wait an entire day for the glue to cure.) The glue sets as soon as you stop moving the grip, get it in the right position to begin with!

    Enjoy the new warmth while riding!

    As a side note, my control unit leaked and shorted itself. I took it apart and dried it out, tested it (it still worked!) and put it back together with silicon sealant. If you want to make sure your control unit is water proof, get a non-acidic silicon sealant that is safe to use on plastics, and smear a whole heap over the bottom, and around where the wires enter the controller. Because mine is mounted on the bracket, I've sealed around there as well. Silicon sealant typically takes 3-7 days to cure fully, depending on temperature.
  2. .. and you're only supposed to post three pictures per post :wink:.

    Good tutorial, ginji.

    (I cheated and paid someone to do it for me :LOL:).
  3. i know that ;) I figured i could probably stretch the rules in this case with a warning in the title and as it was something helpful :)
  4. updated with info for the grips! I don't have a camera with me atm, so no pics, although I haven't glued the grips on yet, so they may yet come.
  5. well , I finally got a set yesterday, the local bikeshop had some VSM heater kits hanging on the rack!

    they were thin plastic stick-on pads with resistor material inside them designed to wrap around the bar to fit under your standard grips.

    last night i fitted them, the hardest part was getting the grips on and off. i had asked the bikeshop for advice , they said to use wd40 or crc to loosen the grips , clean that off with shellite or alcohol , then apply the sticky pads with the wires facing towards the front of the bike to hide them.

    the grips are really tight fitting onto the bar on my transalp on the left side and over the throttle slider on the right side , and hairspray was sugested as an easy way to reapply the grips, either that or a little wipe of wd40 just at the end to get them started. so thats what i did and they are all fitted ok.

    tomorrow i have to tidy up the wiring as i just passed some twinflex from the bars to the back of the bike across the tail lamp wires to be able to use them this morning.

    the results? absolutely brilliant. they should be standard fit. i had warm hands and fingers on the ride to town and back today (110kms) and it was -1.5 this morning and just above 0 on the way home. (now subtract windchill at 100kmph !)