LED Driving Lights


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Mh434
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LED Driving Lights

Postby Mh434 » Thu Mar 05, 2015 4:16 am



Well, I bought a set of these 10-watt, LED, from-China driving lights. Over the winter, amid many maintenance chores, I installed them, and thought I'd post the results.


First, as some of you know, the seller (on Ebay) and I had a bit of a set-to, but in the end I got my lights. I was pleasantly surprised on the apparent quality of the lights. As claimed, they look to be CNC-machined aluminum, very solid indeed, purportedly completely waterproof, and come with all stainless-steel hardware. Wiring is quite stout (more than sufficient for LED lights), and clad in good quality heat shrink.

I mounted them just above each radiator, using the bolts that attach the "fairing skirt". I ran the wiring up into the fairing, past the stereo, and back to a push-on/push-off marine waterproof switch, in the black plastic beside the fuel door (to the right - on the left side is my audio-in plug & iSimple system switch). I used an inline 10-amp fuse, and took the power from the accessory terminal at the fuse panel. Current draw is essentially negligible. No relay was used, and my onboard voltmeter doesn't even react when they're turned on.



How do they work? They're blindingly bright - if you look into them at night, they'll sear through your retinas, burn a hole through your brain, and give you a sunburn on the inside of the back of your skull. :lol: :shock:

By way of illustration, the next pic is of the bike with just the H4 60-watt halogens on, and the one following is with the LED's on as well. The LED's are brighter - a LOT brighter. In the lighting pics below, the headlights look nice & bright. However, with the LED's on, the headlights look like they emit a dim, yellow glow by comparison. In person, the halogens look bright, but the LED's are searing!



On the road - same again. Dark road, no streetlights, just the headlights - road looks pretty well lit. Turn on the LED's, and it's like daylight, with surprising reach. Turn them off, and it looks like all the bike's lights have gone out, and I only have the little position lights on. It takes a moment or two before your night vision begins to tell you there really is light...just not much of it. I've always thought that LED's, while very bright, just don't project far enough for reasonable vehicle lighting. I can't say that anymore! As an experiment, I blocked out both headlights with cardboard & tried riding with just the LED's on. No problem - the lack of regular headlights was not even discernible. I pulled the cardboard off, and could hardly tell the difference when the H4's were adding to the lighting. Of course, the lack of high/low beam capability rules them out as the sole source of lighting, but in the event that, for some reason, I lost both headlights, I could safely see to drive with just the LED's.

Anyway, IMHO these were a worthwhile investment (around $45.00 USD, with free shipping). Not only will I be able to see better, but I'll be seen better as well.



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Mspinner
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Re: LED Driving Lights

Postby Mspinner » Mon Mar 09, 2015 5:03 pm

Thanx for the review...looking for some led for my 1100... Might have to mount on my forks.

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Re: LED Driving Lights

Postby roadwanderer2 » Mon Mar 09, 2015 5:13 pm

Mh434 wrote:Well, I bought a set of these 10-watt, LED, from-China driving lights. Over the winter, amid many maintenance chores, I installed them, and thought I'd post the results.

driving lights.JPG

First, as some of you know, the seller (on Ebay) and I had a bit of a set-to, but in the end I got my lights. I was pleasantly surprised on the apparent quality of the lights. As claimed, they look to be CNC-machined aluminum, very solid indeed, purportedly completely waterproof, and come with all stainless-steel hardware. Wiring is quite stout (more than sufficient for LED lights), and clad in good quality heat shrink.

I mounted them just above each radiator, using the bolts that attach the "fairing skirt". I ran the wiring up into the fairing, past the stereo, and back to a push-on/push-off marine waterproof switch, in the black plastic beside the fuel door (to the right - on the left side is my audio-in plug & iSimple system switch). I used an inline 10-amp fuse, and took the power from the accessory terminal at the fuse panel. Current draw is essentially negligible. No relay was used, and my onboard voltmeter doesn't even react when they're turned on.

IMG_0658.JPG

IMG_0701.JPG

How do they work? They're blindingly bright - if you look into them at night, they'll sear through your retinas, burn a hole through your brain, and give you a sunburn on the inside of the back of your skull. :lol: :shock:

By way of illustration, the next pic is of the bike with just the H4 60-watt halogens on, and the one following is with the LED's on as well. The LED's are brighter - a LOT brighter. In the lighting pics below, the headlights look nice & bright. However, with the LED's on, the headlights look like they emit a dim, yellow glow by comparison. In person, the halogens look bright, but the LED's are searing!
IMG_0657.JPG

IMG_0654.JPG


On the road - same again. Dark road, no streetlights, just the headlights - road looks pretty well lit. Turn on the LED's, and it's like daylight, with surprising reach. Turn them off, and it looks like all the bike's lights have gone out, and I only have the little position lights on. It takes a moment or two before your night vision begins to tell you there really is light...just not much of it. I've always thought that LED's, while very bright, just don't project far enough for reasonable vehicle lighting. I can't say that anymore! As an experiment, I blocked out both headlights with cardboard & tried riding with just the LED's on. No problem - the lack of regular headlights was not even discernible. I pulled the cardboard off, and could hardly tell the difference when the H4's were adding to the lighting. Of course, the lack of high/low beam capability rules them out as the sole source of lighting, but in the event that, for some reason, I lost both headlights, I could safely see to drive with just the LED's.

Anyway, IMHO these were a worthwhile investment (around $45.00 USD, with free shipping). Not only will I be able to see better, but I'll be seen better as well.


what was the item number of the lights you bought on eBay and what was the seller's store name.

stuart.

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Mh434
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Re: LED Driving Lights

Postby Mh434 » Mon Mar 09, 2015 7:19 pm

I'll have to look up the item number, but the seller's name was Uncledavid2010. I'd actually recommend a different seller, though - I had some...difficulties...with him (I ended up having to lodge a PayPal dispute to get my lights). They are quite popular lights, though, with many sellers.

When I get home from work, I'll post an Ebay link for the lights.

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Re: LED Driving Lights

Postby roadwanderer2 » Mon Mar 09, 2015 7:31 pm

thanks Mh, I'd appreciate that. yes, they are popular, I went onto eBay and saw a lot of them listed, in fact, it was hard for me to choose which ones to purchase lol. im also thinking about getting some of those LED light strips to add to my bike once I get the paint work done to it.

stuart.

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Re: LED Driving Lights

Postby MikeB » Mon Mar 09, 2015 7:37 pm

Here is the item number for the 30 degree spot beams: 121129460127. They are $44.99 with free shipping. Look through his store, there is a lot to choose from. There are also 15 degree spot beams I believe.

I'm glad you liked the lights. I have always liked mine.
I was sure you would like them once you received them and installed them. I was a little worried there for a while that you were not going to have a fair shake from the seller. I'm happy it all turned out okay.
MikeB
Tacoma, WA, USA

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Re: LED Driving Lights

Postby roadwanderer2 » Mon Mar 09, 2015 7:55 pm

hey MikeB, I just went onto eBay and saw them and I have them saved on my "watch list" and possibly next month i'll pick them up for my bike. where I live is basically country, so most our back roads here are very dark and there are deer, possum, rabbits and other woodland animals running around, and these lights would be a great help.

thanks again,

stuart.

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Re: LED Driving Lights

Postby MikeB » Mon Mar 09, 2015 8:00 pm

Take a look at these: 131448358658

They appear to be a double set of the same CREE LED. May be really bright.

Except the shipping is as much as the price of the light.

May be something to think about though.
MikeB
Tacoma, WA, USA

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Re: LED Driving Lights

Postby roadwanderer2 » Mon Mar 09, 2015 8:28 pm

MikeB wrote:Take a look at these: 131448358658

They appear to be a double set of the same CREE LED. May be really bright.

Except the shipping is as much as the price of the light.

May be something to think about though.


your right, it does. it appears that listing is finished, but your right, the shipping is as much as the item itself lol. im sure I can find a pair with free shipping.

stuart.

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Re: LED Driving Lights

Postby MikeB » Mon Mar 09, 2015 8:50 pm

If you do find a pair with free shipping, I would anticipate paying $59.90 for the set. But hey, that is only about $10 more than a set of 10 watt lights.
MikeB
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Re: LED Driving Lights

Postby roadwanderer2 » Mon Mar 09, 2015 8:59 pm

oh im sure I can find a pair for that or cheaper.

and with this being posted, im signing off for the night.

sleep well ya'll.

stuart.

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Re: LED Driving Lights

Postby Happytrails » Sun Mar 22, 2015 5:20 pm

Good review, thanks for posting. Been wanting to add driving lights for early morning commutes to work on the back country roads I drive. I like how these wouldn't be sticking out as much. Here is the same thing except in chrome. Price is a bit high but maybe someone else will find better.

http://www.amazon.com/Chrome-motorcycle-cruiser-passing-running/dp/B00J6990A2
1991 GL1500 SE Anniversary Edition
Sun Flare Gold Metallic
Vallant Brown Inset

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Re: LED Driving Lights

Postby SlowTyper » Wed Apr 01, 2015 1:33 am

I added LED driving lights to my Wing that are a different model/style/wattage, and they too are surprisingly bright. I wanted them on at all times for the extra visibility, but they were too bright for oncoming traffic to tolerate.

My workaround for the harsh brightness was to connect them to my low-beam circuit through a lower value high wattage resistor. With a little experimentation, I found a value that worked well with my particular LEDs (I think it was 4 ohms, 10 watt). I connected them directly to my high beam circuit too, using high current diodes to isolate the high & low beam circuits.

Thus, when I am riding with my low beams on, the LEDs are bright enough to provide the desired added visibility without blinding oncoming drivers. But when I flip on my high beam, the LEDs come on full brightness, letting me see more area in front on me. I actually have them aimed somewhat outward to light up the road ditches. I noticed one evening at least one deer did not like them and immediately spun around and ran back away from the road.

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Re: LED Driving Lights

Postby newday777 » Wed Apr 01, 2015 7:18 am

That's the fleebay seller(uncledavid2010) that Mh434 warned to stay away from or risk problems in your purchase. Heed the warnings. The feedback ratings are poor.
Fleebay is buyer beware. Check out the feedback ratings of any seller before you make a purchase.


MikeB wrote:Take a look at these: 131448358658

They appear to be a double set of the same CREE LED. May be really bright.

Except the shipping is as much as the price of the light.

May be something to think about though.

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Re: LED Driving Lights

Postby RBGERSON » Wed Apr 01, 2015 7:59 am

Looks like the same light fro .01 plus $30 shipping... http://tinyurl.com/q73xt8d
HAD LOTS OF GOLDWING 75-83
NOW INTO 1500'S..RIDING A 1998 SE

FAIR WINDS,
RB

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Re: LED Driving Lights

Postby dwarven1 » Wed Apr 01, 2015 9:03 am

These http://www.ebay.com/itm/PAIR-2INCH-10W- ... 1011592119 appear to be the same, although the listing does not specify the Cree LED used. $30 & free shipping.

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Re: LED Driving Lights

Postby tblank » Wed Apr 01, 2015 11:59 am

I got my lights through; superbrightleds.com. They were about 42.00 dollars a piece and I also ordered the wiring harness with built in relay and on/offswitch. The little switch has it's own light to show they are on during the day. I love them and experienced the same thing as the original poster. At night they really light things up. And, no I don't need the head light on to ride at night (although it is). I live on the west coast and many days we have overcast or foggy weather. The lights really show up on these cloudy days. I got them to BE SEEN, not to see the road better but the bonus is they work very well day or night. My bike is an '87 1200 Interstate and the lights are mounted like the original posters', using the fairing mounts. I had to make my own mounting brackets to accommodate. I'm about to install a volt meter to see if I can add another set of 120 degree 700 lumen lights down low to show the road and shoulders while riding at night. One of the best additions to date on my Wing. Thanks to the forum adminstrator for the tip. Heck, I thank him for all his work on this great site. An invaluable service.
Cheers.

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Re: LED Driving Lights

Postby dwarven1 » Wed Apr 01, 2015 12:29 pm

tblank wrote:I got my lights through; superbrightleds.com. They were about 42.00 dollars a piece and I also ordered the wiring harness with built in relay and on/offswitch. The little switch has it's own light to show they are on during the day.


Is that harness this unit? https://www.superbrightleds.com/moreinf ... 1979/4454/

It'd save a lot of work building the wiring, but I only see two power wires - wouldn't that let the lights stay on after the bike is shut off? Seems to me there should be another positive line coming into the relay so that you can only energize the lights while the ignition is on.

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Re: LED Driving Lights

Postby tblank » Wed Apr 01, 2015 1:33 pm

Hello Dwarvin1, In the long run, I thought it to be much easier to get the harness with the disconnects, relay, and the switch. Made installation quicker and easier. There is plenty of length supplied. I ended up cutting it down and soldering and shrink wrapping the splice to fit behind the fairing. The disconnects are very handy if you need to take the fairing off or apart and need access. The issue of the lights on or off with the key is all in choosing the power supply. I went to the fuse box and wired it direct. That way, it has two in line fuses for protection. The relay however is critical and I thought why not get the package deal. I'm happy I did. Best of luck.

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Re: LED Driving Lights

Postby dwarven1 » Wed Apr 01, 2015 2:01 pm

Is it possible to add a second positive line to energize the relay? That way I could supply the coil from a switched positive line (from the ignition) and the supply for the lights directly from the battery - the way it should be wired.

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Re: LED Driving Lights

Postby SlowTyper » Wed Apr 01, 2015 2:54 pm

I don't understand the concern for wiring these LEDs through a relay direct to the battery... Even if you purchase 24watt LEDs, that is only 2 amps each - 4 amps total for both. (Most links in this post are for 10w lights, which is <2 amps total!) Five amp rated switches are readily available, if you decide you want to be able to turn the LEDs off. But why not just connect them to the ignition power buss (or the aux power buss if you want them on in the 'park' key position)? An additional couple amps shouldn't overload the ignition switch. The exception would be if you have added several additional loads, in which case one 30Amp relay (controlled by the ignition switch) could be used to power everything.

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Re: LED Driving Lights

Postby newday777 » Wed Apr 01, 2015 3:16 pm

The reason is with any accessory added on to protect the bikes wire harness in case of not only load from the lights draw but also protects if you have a short in your wiring you won't blow or damage the bike harness. It helps in tracking down problems later too that you or someone else has to track down.
It's always better to have an accessory fuse panel at the least, that is relay activated and not add to the stock fuse panel.
But you do as you think will be acceptable for you.

SlowTyper wrote:I don't understand the concern for wiring these LEDs through a relay direct to the battery... Even if you purchase 24watt LEDs, that is only 2 amps each - 4 amps total for both. (Most links in this post are for 10w lights, which is <2 amps total!) Five amp rated switches are readily available, if you decide you want to be able to turn the LEDs off. But why not just connect them to the ignition power buss (or the aux power buss if you want them on in the 'park' key position)? An additional couple amps shouldn't overload the ignition switch. The exception would be if you have added several additional loads, in which case one 30Amp relay (controlled by the ignition switch) could be used to power everything.

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Re: LED Driving Lights

Postby dwarven1 » Wed Apr 01, 2015 3:24 pm

SlowTyper wrote:I don't understand the concern for wiring these LEDs through a relay direct to the battery...


Because I prefer to do things the right way.

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Re: LED Driving Lights

Postby WingAdmin » Wed Apr 01, 2015 3:45 pm

dwarven1 wrote:
SlowTyper wrote:I don't understand the concern for wiring these LEDs through a relay direct to the battery...


Because I prefer to do things the right way.


Not to mention LEDs are sensitive to voltage fluctuations. Having them powered directly from the battery through a relay, instead of through the myriad connectors, ignition switches, relays etc. will minimize voltage drop, which will make sure the LEDs are running at their full brightness.

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Re: LED Driving Lights

Postby SlowTyper » Wed Apr 01, 2015 5:16 pm

You may want to connect your LED lights to a variable voltage bench power supply, and document your findings.

For example, these LEDs:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/2pc-27W-5inch-Round-Flood-LED-Work-Light-OffRoad-Lamp-4WD-UTE-ATV-SUV-JEEP-Boat-/181705336091?hash=item2a4e7b651b&vxp=mtr
have a voltage supply range of 9-32 volts.

In the case of the driving light LEDs I purchased (which have >1000 lumens output), I found that they obtained full brightness (and had the highest current draw) at a mere 10 volts. As the supply voltage increased, their current draw decreased while the brightness remained the same. I bench tested them up to 16 volts, and noted they came became visible at about 8 volts. Their actual power consumption was about 10% lower than their published description, which I presume was actually the total wattage rating of the LEDs used in the fixture rather than the wattage consumption rating for the whole unit.

Cheap LEDs are powered through resistors, which will result in a brightness output that does fluctuate with voltage. And the value of the resistor used is determined by the maximum voltage the LEDs are subjected to such that it does not exceed a current level that will fry the LED. In this scenario, voltage is critical. And the LED will seldom output its maximum brightness because it will not be used at its maximum design voltage.

But in situations where the manufacturer is attempting to obtain the maximum brightness that the LEDs are capable of, they will incorporate an internal regulated power supply that automatically keeps the power to the LED very close to the maximum they can handle. And this power supply is designed to operate over the voltage range found in vehicles, typically 10-16 volts, with a bit of a safety factor added to the high side.

My opinion is that as it relates to the LEDs being discussed in this thread, it is OK to connect them directly to existing bike wiring, using a 3 amp fuse close to where they are connected to the bike electrical system, so as to protect the bike wiring harness from shorts or overload. 2-3 amps is not going to fry bike wiring...

On the other hand, connecting air horns is an entirely different matter (mine draw 90 amps!). It also is another matter if you are adding numerous accessories (as I have done). In that case, small loads can add up, and I do advise separate wiring back to the battery, controlled by a relay that operates in conjunction with the ignition switch (so you don't inadvertently leave anything on).




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