Goldwing HID's & SoCalMotoGear & Cyclemax


Reviews of Goldwing and motorcycle-related products and services
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Eboness
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Goldwing HID's & SoCalMotoGear & Cyclemax

Postby Eboness » Sat Nov 02, 2013 9:54 am



Hi Folks, We've all seen posts once in a while about companies who have not lived up to their promise of good customer service. I guess we expect good service
and only say something when we get bad service. I want to pass on a story about a company who gave me great customer service. I've been looking into getting
our 1998 GL1500 HID lights the last couple of years but prices have not been conducive to a purchase. Then I heard about SoCalMotoGear and there
HID system for Goldwings. After a little research and seeing their product and price I decided to give them a try. I ordered a set from Cyclemax and in about
a week my HID kit arrived. The plug and play system was very easy to install and I was looking forward to the great forward lighting. After the recommended test
before completing the install I discovered that the right bulb would not work. I tried a few things but could not get the bulb to work. During one of my
tests I had placed the foam protective sleeve over the left bulb and forgot to take it off during a lighting test. Well you guessed it, not only did I have a
non functioning bulb but now I had a second bulb covered with melted foam goo. After contacting Cyclemax and telling them my problem, including my stupidity,
I was assured they would look into my problem with SoCalMotoGear and get back to me. A couple of days later I received a call from SoCalMotoGear and was told
they would send me a new set of bulbs at no charge. Wow great service. Well I received the new bulbs but again the right one would not work. This time I called
SoCalMotoGear directly and they gave me some tips on finding the problem. This helped a lot because I discovered it was not the bulb but the ballast that was
faulty. Again SoCalMotoGear said not to worry they would sent me a new ballast a.s.a.p. and again no charge. I received my new ballast and I'm happy to say
our 1998 GL1500 looks great and those HID's are fantastic. I can't thank the boys at SoCalMotoGear and Cyclemax enough for their great customer service and
I would not hesitate to recommend both companies to anyone. So if you want your GL1500 or GL1800 to light up the night these are the people to deal with and
this is the HID product to buy.
Ride safe. :D :D :D


Former 3PPCLI Canadian Armed Forces Member 1975-1982

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coolrunning
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Re: Goldwing HID's & SoCalMotoGear & Cyclemax

Postby coolrunning » Sat Sep 12, 2015 12:21 pm

I had a similar experience with my TruHID kit for my 1999 GL1500 ordered directly from SoCalMotorGear. The quality of the kit is very good. I noticed that the wiring harnesses are heavy duty, and the connectors are better than Honda OEM. After a few weeks, the right side went out. I verified it was the not the ballast by swapping bulbs. SoCal sent me another set of bulbs at no charge. The HIDs are the best and brightest you can buy. I highly recommend both SoCalMotorGear and Goldwing TruHID.
Coolrunning

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thrasherg
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Re: Goldwing HID's & SoCalMotoGear & Cyclemax

Postby thrasherg » Tue Sep 15, 2015 9:31 am

It might be just me, It's great to hear how good the customer service is, but it's poor to hear that many of you are getting defective kits in the first place!! Maybe they have sold thousands of these kits and we are only hearing about the 3 kits that went wrong in all of those shipped products (it's always hard to know with the internet) but my initial take is their checking of outgoing products is not as rigorous as it could be? Great that they stand behind their product, but how about preventing the defective products from going out in the first place!! This is not a bitch, just an observation, I like good customer support, but I prefer to get a good working product even more!!

Gary

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Re: Goldwing HID's & SoCalMotoGear & Cyclemax

Postby crock4 » Sat Sep 19, 2015 5:52 am

My experience with this product was that I bought a complete kit from Cyclemax. They arrived in a timely manner, and I proceeded to the install. There was a note on the directions that when installing the bulbs, if they don't work reverse them. Well with my luck most of the ones I put in I had to reverse to get them to work. On one of the bulbs I guess I pulled a little too hard on the bulb, and wouln't you know it it would not work after that. I did not call SoCal, but did call Cyclemax. Their response was we can sell you another bulb, plus shipping which came to around 25. I would have thought they would at least eat the shipping of 5 bucks. I know it's not their fault the bulbs are so fragile. However due to the number of things I buy from them that I could easily buy elsewhere it certainly would have gone a long way in building customer loyalty.
I am going to contact SoCal though just to see what they have to say about it, and whether they will offer to send me a replacement.
Thanks to this forum for giving me a mental soapbox to vent from.

Bob
Passion keeps your blood flowing and your heart beating. Motorcycles are my passion !

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Re: Goldwing HID's & SoCalMotoGear & Cyclemax

Postby MikeB » Mon Oct 12, 2015 4:49 am

The HID bulbs and ballasts normally carry a one year warranty. Some retailers offer a two year warranty. Pulling on the bulb or wire should not cause them to fail. If it does, call the retailer or manufacturer and get a warranty replacement.

I have installed seven HID kits in the past few years and have found that the Ballast seems to be the weak link. The bulbs seldom fail in my experience. The one bulb that did fail had a poorly connected wire at the bulb base. This bulb wire connection failed after about three months. It was warranted by SoCalMotoGear. They sent me a pair of bulbs since they should be replaced in pairs.

I've had three or four ballast failures from other kits I have bought. None of the kits bought from SoCalMotoGear have given me any ballast problems.

All the ballast issues I have had have been warranty replaced and those kits were bought from a seller on Ebay.
MikeB
Tacoma, WA, USA

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Re: Goldwing HID's & SoCalMotoGear & Cyclemax

Postby jbro08 » Fri Apr 01, 2016 6:47 pm

I have also purchased directly from SoCalMotoGear, I heard of them watching a Cruiseman video on youtube. I wanted to fit out my 08 Wing with LED bulbs for the blinkers and running and stop lights...I had two bulbs that were bad and without question they immediately sent replacements. They truly do have great customer service and I hope they keep it up. My next purchase will be HID's and I'll get them from SoCalMotoGear for sure!

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sczinege
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Re: Goldwing HID's & SoCalMotoGear & Cyclemax

Postby sczinege » Sun Apr 03, 2016 12:22 am

I've also had some issues with my HID lights for my 1500 and like you guys I received lightning fast service & replacement parts from SoCalMotoGear. When I last spoke to Tim at SoCal, last week he mentioned that they were coming out with some LED headlights for the 1500 & 1800. They have been testing them for months & should be available later this month. They are supposed to be as bright or brighter than the HID. I think that will be hard to beat the HID. Love them lights.
Keep the rubber side down - Steve

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Re: Goldwing HID's & SoCalMotoGear & Cyclemax

Postby jbro08 » Sun Apr 03, 2016 10:42 am

I would love to change my headlights to LED, but as of now, so far, they just don't throw out the quality of beam that the HID lights do or are as focused on the road..they look great from a distance and to oncoming traffic, but for the rider, the LED headlights just don't cut it yet.. and many put in that disclaimer when offering them. I hope these ones that SoCal is testing will be different.

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sczinege
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Re: Goldwing HID's & SoCalMotoGear & Cyclemax

Postby sczinege » Sun Apr 03, 2016 12:25 pm

Not in a rush to change mine, since I just did a '' ballast '' tuneup on my HID and hopefully they will last for a long while. Just the same I am interested to see how these new LED perform especially at night. Somehow I don't think they will be able to pierce deeply into the darkness like these HID do. But we will see. Good news is there are no ballasts for the LED, only a LED '' driver?''& LED are supposed to last way longer. Time will tell. ;)
Keep the rubber side down - Steve

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Re: Goldwing HID's & SoCalMotoGear & Cyclemax

Postby coolrunning » Sun May 01, 2016 11:33 am

sczinege wrote:When I last spoke to Tim at SoCal, last week he mentioned that they were coming out with some LED headlights for the 1500 & 1800. They have been testing them for months & should be available later this month. They are supposed to be as bright or brighter than the HID. I think that will be hard to beat the HID. Love them lights.


Tim sent me a set of his new LED's for my 1999 GL1500 Aspencade. I removed my HID kit and switched to the LED kit (a twenty minute job). Yes, the LEDs are bright! The issue I have with them is that the LEDs are only on the downside of the bulb, so the top part of my reflector is dark. The headlight lense on my bike is clear with no diffuser. I switched back to my HIDs, and I am totally happy with them. I have a friend with a 1994 GL1500 SE and he was considering going to LEDs. I let him try my set and they worked great! His headlight lense is diffused (with ribs molded into the plastic) and the light fills the entire headlight. I would not have imagined it would make any difference, but it does. The HIDs have a slightly blue tint whereas the LEDs are bright white. Both are super visible at night, and also increased safety in daylight.

Also, for those of you who have had bad experiences you with HIDs, two things to remember. 1) You get what you pay for. If the set on ebay is only $30.00 and the SoMoCal set is $130.00, there is a very good reason for it. Quality costs more. The Chinese have mastered the art of manufacturing junk in mass quantities at very cheap prices. Buyer beware! 2) As with any light bulb, you must exercise great care when installing so as not to leave any fingerprints on the glass during installation. I wear latex surgical type gloves when installing. If you don't have any and you try installing bare handed, it is a good idea to carefully wipe each bulb with an alcohol swab before powering them up. This is true for halogens as well. Apparently, all it takes is one oily fingerprint to cause the bulb to overheat in that spot and fail.
Coolrunning

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Re: Goldwing HID's & SoCalMotoGear & Cyclemax

Postby WingAdmin » Sun May 01, 2016 1:52 pm

coolrunning wrote:Tim sent me a set of his new LED's for my 1999 GL1500 Aspencade. I removed my HID kit and switched to the LED kit (a twenty minute job). Yes, the LEDs are bright! The issue I have with them is that the LEDs are only on the downside of the bulb, so the top part of my reflector is dark.


This is the way H4 bulbs are supposed to work. If you look at the actual original H4 bulb:



In this image, the top of the bulb is to the left.

Notice the front half of the bulb, there is a shield. The low beam filament is behind this shield, and the shield prevents any of the light from reaching the bottom of the reflector. All the low beam light is shone on the top of the reflector only. The reflector is a parabolic reflector, so it then reflects this light down to the bottom - onto the road, but not up above into oncoming drivers' eyes.



The high beam filament has no shield - it sends light out to both the top and the bottom of the reflector, so that the output from the headlight assembly is not limited like it is with the low beam filament.

On the LEDs I tested, there is one LED on each side - one on top, and one on the bottom, you can just see the bottom one in this closeup shot:

LED Headlight Closeup
LED Headlight Closeup


When in low beam mode, the one on top lights up, when in high beam mode, both of them light up.

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sczinege
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Re: Goldwing HID's & SoCalMotoGear & Cyclemax

Postby sczinege » Mon May 02, 2016 7:40 pm

I have the same 98-00 style headlight as you. I upgraded. So are they as bright at night as your HID ? Did you still have a high beam with the LED ? I'm still trying to understand your issue. When the light was on low beam, the top of your headlight is dark & it looks only half lite up ? Did you talk to Tim at SoCal about this. Is that the way it was supposed to look ? If so I don't think I would like them either
Keep the rubber side down - Steve

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coolrunning
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Re: Goldwing HID's & SoCalMotoGear & Cyclemax

Postby coolrunning » Sat May 07, 2016 10:42 pm

Yes, I spoke to Time about the issue. He said they were a new product they were trying out, and he was very interested in how they worked. Mine did not look like the ones in the picture. There were only 3 LEDs mounted in a row on the bottom side of the bulb, and none mounted on top. The result was a very focused bright band of light aimed at the street directly in front of the bike that was cut off sharply at about 50 feet in front of the front wheel. My HIDs, on the other hand turned night into day and have about a half mile range when I flip the brights on. I pulled the LEDs and reinstalled my Tru HIDs and will likely remain a fan of HID headlights. If the new Pathfinder LEDs are 360 degree bulbs, 5000K and at least 50W, I might give them a try. You simply cannot have too much light on a motorcycle at night! Curiously, the bottom sided LEDs I pulled worked fine in my buddie's 1994 SE, but I think it was because of the older style lense he has with the ribbed diffuser molded into the plastic. My 1999 Aspencade has the clear glass look with no diffuser at all. Apparently, the diffuser does such a great job of spreading the light all over the reflector that you cannot tell the bulbs only have LEDs on the bottom.
Coolrunning

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Re: Goldwing HID's & SoCalMotoGear & Cyclemax

Postby MikeB » Thu May 19, 2016 3:03 pm

I have both a GL1500 and a GL1800 with HID's installed. I love the extra light.

On the GL1500, I really miss the extra safety advantage of the headlight modulator. As we all know, the HID's are not compatible with the modulators.

I had the "high output" LED bulbs in the GL1800 high beams with my Kisan modulator but they looked like they were flashing or blinking rather than modulating. I was really okay with that at first. But I soon found out that the supposed high output LED's just were very inadequate for night time driving. They just did not penetrate the darkness. I took them out and installed the Halogen bulbs. They work with the modulator like they are supposed to and penetrated well but the difference in light temperature (color) made the high lights look yellowish. When they are modulating, it looks to some more like four way flashers than high beams. Not everyone has average or better visual acuity I guess.

If the LED's work with the modulator as they should, I will most likely upgrade to the LED system on both bikes. I like having the extra light and I really want the advantage of the additional safety margin of the headlight modulator.

I have written to both Kisan and SoCalMotoGear concerning this. Tim at SoCal wrote my back within about 10 minutes. He said Yes, the Kisan Pathblazer has recently been tested to work with our LED lights but as for the legality of the modulator with LEDs, I understand that they are legal, however, ANDY from Kisan might be able to answer this specific question. Tim CC'd Andy with that email and I too wrote to TechSupport at Kisan. Hopefully I will get some good information.

I'll let you know what I find out.
MikeB
Tacoma, WA, USA

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Re: Goldwing HID's & SoCalMotoGear & Cyclemax

Postby MikeB » Thu May 19, 2016 3:52 pm

I have some more info for you. Tim just emailed me and here is what he said:

I got the answer from Kisan...

The LED headlights DO NOT turn-off completely. FMVSS Sec.108 specifies a limit of 13% to 17% of full brightness for modulation. Our LED software code accomplished that. So we are fully compliant with Sec.108 requirements.


I also got this from Andy at Kisan...
Michael,

P115W-D with LED Option software code truly modulates the LED headlights.

LED headlights DO NOT turn-off completely. FMVSS Sec.108 specifies a limit of 13% to 17% of full brightness for modulation. Our LED software code accomplished that. So we are fully compliant with Sec.108 requirements.

I took some videos of my bike with and without the new software code. You can see the difference.

Andy
techsupport@kisantech.com


He sent me four the rather large videos and I can't post them here but yes, you can see that the LED software code for the modulator works very well.

I guess I'll be doing an upgrade soon.


MikeB
Tacoma, WA, USA


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