How to Relocate the Rear Turn Signals on a Harleyby Chris Gilliland
Most Harley-Davidson motorcycles are equipped with a pair of turn signals mounted on the rear fender's frame rails. Although they serve their purpose well in this location, it may be necessary to move the turn signals to install a set of saddlebags or for aesthetic reasons. In fact, special license plate brackets are offered by Harley-Davidson and other manufacturer's for this purpose. Relocating the rear turn signals using any of these products, or a bracket that you have crafted yourself, is a fairly pain-free task that can be completed in less than an hour.
Remove the motorcycle's seat, using a Phillips screwdriver to remove the seat bolt on the rear fender. Lift the seat up and away from the motorcycle to access the battery. If you are working on a Sportster or Dyna model, lift the cover off of the battery box. Unscrew the bolt from the the battery's negative terminal, using a Phillips screwdriver. Pull the negative wire away from the battery.
Remove the screws from the tail lamp's lens, using a Phillips screwdriver. Pull the lens and the bulb off of the lamp housing to access the rear turn signal's wiring connectors, positioned at the upper corners of the housing. Pull the turn signals' connectors off of the prongs on the lamps' housing.
Reach under the rear fender and pull the turn signals' wiring and connectors out of the tail lamp housing. Unscrew the nuts from the turn signal's mounting studs on the bottom of the rear fender, using a socket wrench. Pull the turn signals and their wiring off of the rear fender's frame rails.
Unscrew the stock license plate bracket's bolts, using a socket wrench.
Slide the rear turn signal's wiring through the new license plate bracket's mounting holes. Loosely tighten the turn signal's nuts against the bracket, using a socket wrench.
Push the turn signal's wiring through the holes on the rear fender's stock license plate mounting points. Rotate the turn signals until they are level, then tighten their mounting nuts with a socket wrench. Bolt the license plate bracket into place on the rear fender, using a socket wrench.
Push the turn signal's wiring through the rear fender and into the tail lamp housing. Plug the connectors into the appropriate prongs. Screw the tail lamp bulb and lens into place with a Phillips screwdriver.
Reattach the negative cable to the battery's negative terminal, using a Phillips screwdriver. Lower the battery box's lid, if any. Reinstall the seat and tighten the seat's screw with a Phillips screwdriver.
- "The Professional Motorcycle Repair Program"; Professional Career Development Institute; 1995
- "Harley-Davidson Service Manual: Softail Models"; Harley-Davidson Motor Co.; 2005
- "Layback License Plate and Turn Signal Relocation Kit #60215-06 Instructions"; Harley-Davidson Motor Co.; 2007
- "XL Directional Relocation Kit #53532-02 Instructions"; Harley-Davidson Motor Co.; 2001
Things You'll Need
- Phillips screwdriver
- Socket wrench and sockets
- License plate bracket
An avid motorcyclist, Chris Gilliland has immersed himself into the two-wheeled world while balancing work life and raising three daughters. When he is not managing the parts department of a local, multi-line motorcycle dealership, Gilliland can often be found riding, writing or working on his motorcycle blog, Wingman's Garage.