LED headlamp bulb upgrade


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702scottc
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LED headlamp bulb upgrade

Postby 702scottc » Mon May 05, 2014 5:45 pm



Has anyone used the H-4 LED headlamp bulbs that are available or the units sold by cycle max? I have an LED headlamp on my 81 Interstate and I really like it but it's a sealed beam assy. My 1990 has 2 H-4 bulbs that I replaced with 55/60 watt bulbs and it works ok but the add says these LED bulbs are better. Would like some input before I drop 100$ for 2 bulbs. I'm also thinking about replacing the cornering lights with the LED driving light kit. Any thoughts on this as well?



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Re: LED headlamp bulb upgrade

Postby Mh434 » Mon May 05, 2014 11:53 pm

I've been wondering that myself! I saw that Cyclemax has an 80 watt LED headlight bulb! I'm hoping that they would work with the factory reflector & give a decent pattern. It would be nice to reduce my electrical usage budget while increasing light output...

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Re: LED headlamp bulb upgrade

Postby 702scottc » Tue May 06, 2014 1:47 am

Ya, I'm with you on that. A little extra current is a good thing. The LED headlight on my 1100 works great but it's big bucks. The ones on the cyclemax website are reasonably priced if they work decent. I' m a bit scheptical of the HID upgrade kit and it's longevity. I really don't want to have to add another switch to turn them on. I know I'll forget to turn them on! The HID kit is supposed to be plug and play, wonder how long they will last without adding a switch?

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Re: LED headlamp bulb upgrade

Postby MikeB » Tue May 06, 2014 8:45 am

Like 702scottc, I'm a bit skeptical too but about the LED headlight not the HID. If I could find an LED that can put out the light an HID does in the form of a beam rather than an area light, I'd buy it. I've bought lots of LED bulb replacements but the performance of them has all been disappointing. Maybe the bulbs from Cyclemax are very good, I don't know and may never know. I would have try them or at least see them in use.

I've bought supposed 80 watt LED lamps but they have not impressed me. To begin with, they are advertised as 80 watt but guess what, they are actually only about 12 watts at best. Current consumption is more like 750 - 900 milliamps which makes them 10 to 12 watt bulbs. That tells me they are advertising them as 80 watt replacements in illumination and not current draw. It's too bad that the marketing hype is leading us astray in that manner. I would rather see them advertised with a wattage and lumen output.

I have 10 watt LED driving lights and those are impressive. The beam is like that of the 55 watt driving lights I replaced and the white light color is perfect. AND, they only draw about 710 milliamps at 14.2 volts each. That is just over 10 watts each. A great current saver.
These are very reasonably priced. If you would like to look at them, they are an Ebay item. For the 10 degree spot it is item# 131022190041. for the 30 degree spot it is item#121129460127. They ship from China so there is about a 2 week delivery time.

The thing is, those LED lights have reflectors that are designed to produce the desired effect. When you just purchase replacement LED lamps and stick them in the reflector that was designed for your filament bulb, you may well be disappointed. The reflector is just as, if not more, important than the lamp itself.

As to HID lamps, yes, they really should be used in a projector type housing with reflector designed for them but they do work well in the existing reflectors we have on our motorcycles. The light is fantastic. And it is not necessary to add a switch that you may forget to turn on as 702scottc is saying. If you add a relay that will delay the lights excitation until the engine is running, the lamp and ballast will last longer. That is actually true of any lamp. There are only so many on/off cycles any bulb can endure.

Here is some interesting reading about HID and LED lamps. http://www.halcyon.net/node/217. At the end it says "...LED technology is changing rapidly and it is foreseeable that LEDs will eventually surpass the performance of HID lighting." Personally, I don't think the LED is quite there yet.
MikeB
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Re: LED headlamp bulb upgrade

Postby JorgeTx » Fri May 09, 2014 12:14 pm

Mike B
Did you get the 10 or 30 degree lights?
Which would you recommend?
Did you mount on the engine guard? (crash bar)

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Re: LED headlamp bulb upgrade

Postby MikeB » Fri May 09, 2014 1:51 pm

I have the 30 degree lights mounted at present on the GL1500 and GL1800. I bought some of the 10 degree lights but have not mounted them yet. I think they will be better because they can be aimed pretty much straight down the road without fear of blinding the oncoming drivers. Presently I have the lights pointing down somewhat to keep the glare to a minimum. With these lights on, I don't even need the headlights.
This is where I mounted the GL1500 lights, under the fairing chin.
This is where I mounted the GL1800 lights, under the mirrors.
I do not know where you would mount them on your GL100 but they could be mounted on the engine guards with a bracket that would wrap around your guards.
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Re: LED headlamp bulb upgrade

Postby Dwight_n_Sue » Mon Jun 09, 2014 8:42 am

I just ordered the 10 degree LED lamps from eBay.I am hoping these lamps will work. I plan on mounting them per the photo (thanks MikeB) for the GL1500. I will wire them to the AUX to be always on. I don't have the compufire power generating system. My 96 SE is triked with a light bar. I have bumped my headlamps up a notch from the factory bulb to improve my night lighting situation but these old eyes need something better. I would like to get back to the factory headlamp to cut the power draw and if I could find the replacement LED bulb for my 2004 Lehman GTL conversion lightbar I would be a happy camper.

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Re: LED headlamp bulb upgrade

Postby WingAdmin » Mon Jun 09, 2014 8:54 am

Dwight_n_Sue wrote:I just ordered the 10 degree LED lamps from eBay.I am hoping these lamps will work. I plan on mounting them per the photo (thanks MikeB) for the GL1500. I will wire them to the AUX to be always on. I don't have the compufire power generating system. My 96 SE is triked with a light bar. I have bumped my headlamps up a notch from the factory bulb to improve my night lighting situation but these old eyes need something better. I would like to get back to the factory headlamp to cut the power draw and if I could find the replacement LED bulb for my 2004 Lehman GTL conversion lightbar I would be a happy camper.


Honestly, your best bet is to put a set of HID headlights in your bike. LEDs are nice, but they don't put out anywhere near the massive amount of light a HID bulb throws. As an added bonus, HID lights draw much less power (as little as half) than stock halogen headlights.

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Re: LED headlamp bulb upgrade

Postby MikeB » Mon Jun 09, 2014 9:22 am

I agree that HID produces a lot of light but it you don't have the $150 readily available and are on the fence with the HID installation, the 10W LED lights are a good bet.

You would be surprised what these LED lights will produce and they consume only about 750 mA each. They produce as much forward light as the 55 watt dichroic lens halogen lights I had mounted in the same location on my GL1500 at much less current.

For an immediate upgrade in forward light at under $50 and easy installation, this is probably the best first step. When all you are using is the standard halogen lamps for headlights, a set of these 10 Watt LED's will double the light available. If you are using HID lamps like I am, the light increase is not nearly as noticeable but there is a noticeable improvement. If you have not used these or seen them used, you owe it to yourself to try them out.
MikeB
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Re: LED headlamp bulb upgrade

Postby Dwight_n_Sue » Mon Jun 09, 2014 9:43 am

Thanks MikeB and WingAdmin for your input. I've considered the HID lighting system and may end up there but I'm starting here. A long time back ( a year or so) I thought you (WingAdmin) posted replacement LED lamp numbers for various places on GoldWings. I can't find it if it ever existed. Am I going nuts or did I really see it?

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Re: LED headlamp bulb upgrade

Postby MikeB » Mon Jun 09, 2014 10:08 am

Look here for the GL1500 How To articles - http://goldwingdocs.com/How-To-Articles-GL1500.asp

There are several LED upgrade links there.
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Re: LED headlamp bulb upgrade

Postby Grasshutperformance » Tue Jun 17, 2014 10:47 pm

OK, I have an LED that fits my H4 and it is great. I must tell you that it is 2 wires only. I have it wired to the high beam. It has 3 modes, low, high, and flashing. Each time it is powered back on it changes mode. So if I turn the key on, and it is flashing, then I start the bike and of course, it will jump to the next mode, low, then if I want high I turn the high beam switch to low, shuts off the light, then back on high turns it on again and it is on high. Flip low to high again and it is back flashing, etc. It cost $20 and is brighter than my halogen. Here is a link http://www.ebay.com/itm/Motorcycle-Supe ... af&vxp=mtr
Tom

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Re: LED headlamp bulb upgrade

Postby MikeB » Tue Jun 17, 2014 10:56 pm

Very interesting little LED. I don't think I would want something like that but it is nice to know that it is out there.
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Re: LED headlamp bulb upgrade

Postby Grasshutperformance » Tue Jun 17, 2014 11:53 pm

I can understand that. I want to come up with some sort of circuit that will have an indicator light on the dash so I know what mode I am in daytime, at night you can tell lol! That is my only complaint. I love the flashing during the day!

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Re: LED headlamp bulb upgrade

Postby WingAdmin » Wed Jun 18, 2014 8:09 am

Is it FLASHING or is it modulating? A flashing headlight is illegal on a motor vehicle and will get you a ticket. If it is modulating (where it goes from dim to bright) there are very specific rules as to how it must modulate - the modulation rate, the percentage of brightness it dims down to, etc.

If you click on Manuals at the top of the page, you'll see a document that describes it in detail: Motorcycle Headlight Modulator Regulations - USA and Canada

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Re: LED headlamp bulb upgrade

Postby Dwight_n_Sue » Wed Oct 22, 2014 1:22 pm

I am beginning my installation of the 15 degree LED fog lamps (I thought they were 10) I purchased from eBay last June for our GL1500SE. I am testing the mechanical mounting before completing the electrical tie in. I took MikeB's idea and massaged it a bit to get two axis control because I didn't have confidence in my 'collar's' (the plated band that the assembly connects to) ability to keep the horizontal axis from blinding oncoming traffic. With this mounting scenario I can control up and down and side to side. I just need to verify this set up is strong enough to keep the lamps properly aligned. Because of the uncertainty I am going to wire the lamps through a toggle switch and check the stability of the set up while stationary in our alley after several trips. If all holds true I will make the mount permanent and post the results later this month. I have shimmed the LED metal bracket away from the trike's collar with (2) 6mm washers because of an existing clear plastic trim strip. I will remove the washers and cut the trim strip later if this works. I used a 3/8" X 1/2" X 1" steel bushing (Lowe's) inside the LED bracket. I ran 5mm X .8mm threaded stock (ACE Hardware) through the LED bracket, steel bushing. and LED lamp (I tried 6mm threaded rod through the lamp's plastic bracket but it was a tight fit. If all works out I will drill open the plastic to 6mm and use 6mm threaded rod), securing with 5mm nuts, washers and lock washers. The bracket mounts to the collar with the supplied 6mm bolt washer and lock washer.
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Last edited by Dwight_n_Sue on Wed Oct 22, 2014 2:00 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: LED headlamp bulb upgrade

Postby Dwight_n_Sue » Wed Oct 22, 2014 1:31 pm

I'll enclose a look from the other side.
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Re: LED headlamp bulb upgrade

Postby Mh434 » Wed Oct 22, 2014 2:37 pm

Looks good! My lights are still in transit...should be here soon!

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Re: LED headlamp bulb upgrade

Postby Dwight_n_Sue » Wed Oct 22, 2014 2:46 pm

The weak link is the lamp's housing connection to the part that connects to the mounting bolt. I will JB Weld these parts when I determine my assembly is acceptable.

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Re: LED headlamp bulb upgrade

Postby MikeB » Wed Oct 22, 2014 3:23 pm

The small mount blocks that the light attaches to have worked well with the three sets I have installed. I had to run a tap through one of the holes for the small socket head bolt that holds the block in place. Other than that they have worked and held well.
Last edited by MikeB on Wed Oct 22, 2014 3:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: LED headlamp bulb upgrade

Postby Dwight_n_Sue » Wed Oct 22, 2014 3:42 pm

Thanks for your help MikeB. If not for you I'd still be in the dark.

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Re: LED headlamp bulb upgrade

Postby MikeB » Wed Oct 22, 2014 3:50 pm

Dwight_n_Sue wrote:Thanks for your help MikeB. If not for you I'd still be in the dark.

You are quite welcome. I love the extra light.
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Re: LED headlamp bulb upgrade

Postby Dwight_n_Sue » Mon Oct 27, 2014 5:51 am

I powered up and aligned my LED's last night and I must say I am impressed. They are as bright if not a touch brighter than my high beams. We live in deer country and these lamps give me the ability to look a block down the right side of the road for the varmints. I am going to order factory headlights now to replaced my power grabbing Silver Lights.

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Re: LED headlamp bulb upgrade

Postby MikeB » Mon Oct 27, 2014 10:01 am

I don't think factory lights will be an improvement over the Silver Lights. I think you will be disappointed in the results. The stock 45W/45W lamps sell $34 each, twice the price of Sylvania Silver Lights.

If you want to see a really great improvement in forward light, I'd upgrade to the HID light system sold by Cyclemax http://cyclemax.com/inc/sdetail/gl1500_35_watt_hid_headlight_kit/83/143554. If you really want to see down the road, this system will do the job for you and with a 10 watt decrease in battery power. Compared to stock Honda 45W/45W headlights part# 34901-MN5-003, the 35 watt HID's are a great value. The HID system sells for $150.
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Re: LED headlamp bulb upgrade

Postby kickkem » Sun Jan 03, 2016 12:47 pm

Thanks for all the goodness in your posts about LED driving lights. Where did that bracket come from? Looks awsome.

Thanks

Kick




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