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I failed to secure my 2018 DCT Tour properly on a recent Alaska ferry trip, and it fell over. The most significant damage, I think, was to the transmission control on the right handlebar: When I arrived at the bike, a car deck attendant handed me the small square of plastic (D, N, and A/M) that had popped off and sustained a little damage.


I just snapped it back on; the D/N function works (haven't tried A/M yet), and we rode the final 750 miles with no trouble. But you can see from the photo the hole at the upper right. I put a piece of tape over it to keep moisture out, but wonder if the group has better advice. JB Weld? Rubber cement? (This little piece of plastic is apparently not available separately, and the whole switch assembly is like $400+.)
 

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That switch plate is not loose? It popped back in securely?
 
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Discussion Starter #4
Well, I've been treating it pretty gingerly but it seemed to snap in OK.
 

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By the way, can anyone describe what's actually behind that little square of plastic? I wish I'd studied the actual switches before seeing if the plate would go back on... but I was in a bit of a panic, and when it did, I wasn't about to pry it off to satisfy curiosity.
 

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By the way, can anyone describe what's actually behind that little square of plastic? I wish I'd studied the actual switches before seeing if the plate would go back on... but I was in a bit of a panic, and when it did, I wasn't about to pry it off to satisfy curiosity.

That would be a pucker moment, :grin2:
Do what hulkss suggests . Its a good plan.:smile2:
Looks like the switch is $275, but Im sure there would be a ton of labor involved.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I would go with a little silicone, you can usually find it in a variety of colors.

I appreciate the feedback, guys, but I'm 5,000 miles from home and need to start that ride in about a week. Given this, and that the switch is functioning as is, I'm inclined to pursue nwvic's modest suggestion.
 

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I failed to secure my 2018 DCT Tour properly on a recent Alaska ferry trip, and it fell over. The most significant damage, I think, was to the transmission control on the right handlebar: When I arrived at the bike, a car deck attendant handed me the small square of plastic (D, N, and A/M) that had popped off and sustained a little damage.


I just snapped it back on; the D/N function works (haven't tried A/M yet), and we rode the final 750 miles with no trouble. But you can see from the photo the hole at the upper right. I put a piece of tape over it to keep moisture out, but wonder if the group has better advice. JB Weld? Rubber cement? (This little piece of plastic is apparently not available separately, and the whole switch assembly is like $400+.)

It is imperative that you keep moisture out of the switch or you're going to have problems with erratic operation or possibly "no operation."

Hulkss has the best advice; get a new one. However, that's probably not going to happen before you leave on your trip.

:doorag:
 

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Sugru to the rescue! If you've never used, or even heard of this amazingly versatile product, I suggest that you try it. It is a moldable glue that you can use to repair just about anything. It comes in several different colors, but I actually found some black at a nearby Target.
 

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While at Wing Ding last year I came across a booth that had Plastic Repair Kit. They been in business for a long time. Web site is: www.plastex.net. This product makes even difficult repairs quick and easy. Plastex is sandal & Paintable.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Sugru to the rescue! If you've never used, or even heard of this amazingly versatile product, I suggest that you try it. It is a moldable glue that you can use to repair just about anything. It comes in several different colors, but I actually found some black at a nearby Target.

Thanks, Skyflix. I did pick up some black Sugru at Target last night, and just finished applying a couple of small slivers of it to the switch plate. It does what the silicone would have, and then some. I have a rear-tire appointment tomorrow morning (about 24 hours from now) so that will be a test. I'd rather not have had this happen 5,000 miles from home, but there's an old saying about having made one's bed...
 

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I failed to secure my 2018 DCT Tour properly on a recent Alaska ferry trip, and it fell over. The most significant damage, I think, was to the transmission control on the right handlebar: When I arrived at the bike, a car deck attendant handed me the small square of plastic (D, N, and A/M) that had popped off and sustained a little damage.


I just snapped it back on; the D/N function works (haven't tried A/M yet), and we rode the final 750 miles with no trouble. But you can see from the photo the hole at the upper right. I put a piece of tape over it to keep moisture out, but wonder if the group has better advice. JB Weld? Rubber cement? (This little piece of plastic is apparently not available separately, and the whole switch assembly is like $400+.)
I know you are looking for answers on the repair of your switch, but could you give me advise on what you should have done to secure your bike on the ferry? We will be going to Alaska next summer, and will be taking some ferries to different locations. Your advise would be helpful.

Do you need your own tie downs? Do the ferries have points to secure the bikes? I'm sure they don't have wheel chocks, so would you put it on the center stand?
Thx!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I know you are looking for answers on the repair of your switch, but could you give me advise on what you should have done to secure your bike on the ferry? We will be going to Alaska next summer, and will be taking some ferries to different locations. Your advise would be helpful.

Do you need your own tie downs? Do the ferries have points to secure the bikes? I'm sure they don't have wheel chocks, so would you put it on the center stand?
Thx!!!

Apology for the long delay in replying!

I've only been on the Alaska Maritime Highway ferry once, so my knowledge and experience are limited, but here goes:
(1) They seemed to have plenty of straps, but I had two ratcheting 10' ones, from Wal-Mart, of my own. It seems prudent to bring a couple: cheap in money, space, and weight. (2) The MV Columbia had nice floor-mounted metal tie-down points, looked like flowers. I found one on the right, but on the left saw only a large yellow pipe over near the hull. There were a couple of sea kayaks in the way, and I was tired, so I ignored a tie-down on the left... to my regret later. (3) I didn't see any ferry-provided wheel chocks; I just relied on the parking brake. I thought the side stand would be better, since I didn't have a strap on the left.

Finally, the ferry personnel at the time of my loading were not at all helpful. From other riders' reports this may not be representative, but please ask for (demand!) their advice and help with securing the bike. If you do it yourself, require them to check and approve it for you. In my case it was basically "Park here, bye bye" and I was too tired and green to follow up.

HTH, as they say!
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
Back home!

Just a quick progress report to those who have helped me with this...


We (that is, me and the Gold Wing) left Anchorage on June 28 and arrived in Baltimore, 4,804 miles later, on July 13. (There was a one-day delay obtaining and installing a new battery in a small Michigan town, but that's another story.) The Sugru stiffened the switch plate but of course couldn't deal with what I assume was a broken mounting point underneath. But I found that by poking carefully and firmly at the upper edge (N) and lower edge (D) it was usable... and got us home.
There was one anxious night at a British Columbia campground when I was tired and poked carelessly. The plate shifted its position, without shifting into Drive... oh oh, and still 4,000 miles to go. But the next morning, a careful gloveless index-finger poke brought the welcome "clunk" and "1".


A few days after we got home, I delivered the bike to my dealer... and exactly a month later (!), just a few days ago, got it back with the new switch box (and a couple of minor bodywork things) covered by insurance. I changed the oil and we took a nice 68-mile ride on the back roads of Baltimore County yesterday. After two solo Alaska round-trips it has 20,400 miles on the odo.


I still have some concerns about electricity, but they're not related to this thread (as far as I know) and will be brought up elsewhere.


Thanks, everyone, for your encouragement and advice!
 

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Duct tape for your trip. Then replace the switch when possible
 

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Duct tape for your trip. Then replace the switch when possible
:agree: Duck Tape a Handy Mans best friend-Aye!
 
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