Against the background of a bike that’s supremely reliable in the long run, there have been known to be a few electrical gremlins in the Aprilia RST1000 Futura.
Electrical problems are far more likely to show themselves in bikes that have been ridden through the winter in the UK and Ireland where salt is used to treat icy roads. Also, anything that has not been looked after is a candidate.
In common with other Aprilias, the sidestand cutout can cause trouble and can easily be bypassed.
Bad earths can also cause a lot of problems. The main earth is to the left of the bike and there are two more hidden away on the right hand side of the bike, secured by a single bolt. These need to be clean. See this thread for more information: Apriliaforum: Strange electrical gremlins.
Then there are the hard to trace faults, which can often be traced to a couple of factors:
- Incorrectly wired or malfunctioning accessories such as alarms and even Power Commanders can cause all sorts of running problems;
- Short circuits in the wiring loom. The loom can rub against metal parts, causing shorts and leading to all sorts of bizarre electrical behaviour. The part of the wiring loom that passes between the two cylinders is a common suspect. Water can also collect in the sheath around the wires. This info on the Futura and rain on the Apriliaforum is also worth looking at.
This electrical fault finding guide should help you get to the bottom of any problems.