I love my 2012 Bonneville, don’t get me wrong. It’s just that some things about it drive me crazy, like the absence of a toolkit or a place to put one, the bolt-on seat that requires a hex key to remove, and the ignition switch’s location in the left headlight bracket. That last irritation became even worse when I put a big windscreen on the bike, the bottom part of which extended down far enough to make it nearly impossible to turn the key without getting off the bike and reaching into the narrow space between the screen and the turn signal. That’s when I started thinking about a way to move the ignition switch—something Joker Machine had already figured out.
The Joker Machine Ignition Switch Relocation Bracket for the Bonneville is CNC machined from 6061-T6 aerospace aluminum billet, and comes with two high-quality bolts and a pair of spacers. The bolts replace the two OE ones that attach the front frame downtube to the upper part of the chassis, and the spacers move the bracket outboard so there’s enough room behind the bracket for the switch body.
To install the Joker bracket, first I had to unbolt the left fork ear, swing it to the side and remove the switch from it. Next, I opened the headlight shell, found the ignition switch’s wiring loom and freed it from the clip holding it in place. Pulling the slack out of the loom allowed the switch to reach down to the area near the frame joint, right above the left side of the oil cooler. Finally, I bolted the switch body to the Joker bracket.
The two bolts that hold the frame together aren’t load bearing, so they came out easily. I put the new bolts through the bracket, put the spacers between the bracket and the frame, added a dab of blue Loctite for safety (the bolts are holding the frame together, after all) and torqued the bolts as specified by my Triumph shop manual. And that was it.
While mounting the ignition switch up near the speedo—where it is on most bikes today—would have been preferable, the new position under the front left side of the tank is far better than the original spot. I can easily reach it from the saddle, and the black anodized bracket looks like a stock part (which it ought to be––I’m talking to you, Triumph).
The Joker Machine ignition-switch relocation bracket fits all years of Bonneville, T100 and Thruxton models. It comes in black anodized, clear anodized or chrome, for left- or right-side fitment, and sells for a suggested retail of $54.95 ($59.95 for chrome).
For more information: Call (909) 596-9690 or visit jokermachine.com
(This Gearlab review was published in the July 2014 issue of Rider magazine.)