Can the 83 GL1100 headlight be upgraded?


Information and questions on GL1100 Goldwings (1980-1983)
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lionsullivan
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Motorcycle: 1983 Honda GL1100 GoldWing

Can the 83 GL1100 headlight be upgraded?

Postby lionsullivan » Mon Nov 02, 2009 8:45 am



Can my 1983 GL1100 Aspencade headlight be upgraded to a halogen bulb by simply "pluggung in a halogen bulb" as some ads imply? This sounds too easy. Your expertise is appreciated!



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WingAdmin
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Re: Can the 83 GL1100 headlight be upgraded?

Postby WingAdmin » Mon Nov 02, 2009 11:50 am

It already has a halogen bulb. It uses an H4 bulb, and the "H" in H4 stands for Halogen.

What you can do is change it for a better, brighter halogen bulb. I put a SilverStar H4ST (make sure it's an ST - that's the motorcycle bulb) in my bike, and I'm thrilled with it - as many others have been as well. It's FAR brighter than normal H4 bulbs, but uses no more power than regular H4 bulbs. It makes a huge difference.

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tumunga
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1980 GL1100I Interstate (gone)

Re: Can the 83 GL1100 headlight be upgraded?

Postby tumunga » Wed Nov 04, 2009 7:19 pm

I pulled the entire housing from mine, and installed a Silver Star 7" sealed beam (Sylvania H6024). It wired right up, and works like a charm.
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1989 GL1500 Goldwing with all the optional goodies (I think)

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Re: Can the 83 GL1100 headlight be upgraded?

Postby WingAdmin » Thu Nov 05, 2009 4:28 pm

That's true - on some older bikes, the reflective coating on the inside of the light has dulled, and is not reflecting as much light out the front as it used to. In that case, replacing it with a sealed beam will make a big difference.

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wbetheajr
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Re: Can the 83 GL1100 headlight be upgraded?

Postby wbetheajr » Mon Nov 16, 2009 11:53 pm

Thats a big problem that I have with my 82 Wing, I can't see good at night. When we ride at night I have to get my buddy's wife on her Honda Rebel to ride behind me so I can see (its getting bad when a 250 puts out more light than a big cruiser). I want to find a way to light up world without putting a lot of strain on the old alternator(don't want to have to pull the engine off). My buddy has an 82 also and he put some fog lights on his but they kill the battery especially if we ride in town at slower speeds. Maybe the sealed beam is the way to go. Any alterations need to be done to install the sealed beam?

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tumunga
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1980 GL1100I Interstate (gone)

Re: Can the 83 GL1100 headlight be upgraded?

Postby tumunga » Tue Nov 17, 2009 8:18 am

wbetheajr wrote:Thats a big problem that I have with my 82 Wing, I can't see good at night. When we ride at night I have to get my buddy's wife on her Honda Rebel to ride behind me so I can see (its getting bad when a 250 puts out more light than a big cruiser). I want to find a way to light up world without putting a lot of strain on the old alternator(don't want to have to pull the engine off). My buddy has an 82 also and he put some fog lights on his but they kill the battery especially if we ride in town at slower speeds. Maybe the sealed beam is the way to go. Any alterations need to be done to install the sealed beam?


Not a bit.
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1989 GL1500 Goldwing with all the optional goodies (I think)

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WingAdmin
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Re: Can the 83 GL1100 headlight be upgraded?

Postby WingAdmin » Tue Nov 17, 2009 11:56 am

wbetheajr wrote:Thats a big problem that I have with my 82 Wing, I can't see good at night. When we ride at night I have to get my buddy's wife on her Honda Rebel to ride behind me so I can see (its getting bad when a 250 puts out more light than a big cruiser). I want to find a way to light up world without putting a lot of strain on the old alternator(don't want to have to pull the engine off). My buddy has an 82 also and he put some fog lights on his but they kill the battery especially if we ride in town at slower speeds. Maybe the sealed beam is the way to go. Any alterations need to be done to install the sealed beam?


I put a Sylvania Silverstar bulb on my 82 1100, which made a big difference in the amount of light that it puts out (using the same amount of power as the original H4).

I also added a set of driving lights. I bought a set at Wal-Mart that were 55 watts each - however, the 55 watt bulbs caused the battery to discharge if the engine was below 3,000 rpm. So I replaced the 55 watt bulbs in the driving lights with these 35 watt bulbs. They have the same light output, but only draw 35 watts instead of 55 watts. The bike's electrical system was able to handle these with no problem.

I detailed this whole procedure in this thread if you want to have a look at it.

The end result is that I no longer feel like I'm riding the dark - it lights up the road quite nicely, and I have no problem seeing in the dark.

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guitarlos
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Re: Can the 83 GL1100 headlight be upgraded?

Postby guitarlos » Wed Nov 18, 2009 8:00 am

What about upgrading to the headlight on a 1980 Gl1100? I have a Vetter fairing.

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Re: Can the 83 GL1100 headlight be upgraded?

Postby WingAdmin » Wed Nov 18, 2009 8:10 am

guitarlos wrote:What about upgrading to the headlight on a 1980 Gl1100? I have a Vetter fairing.


Does the Vetter fairing include its own headlight, or does it fit on and around the existing one?

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guitarlos
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Re: Can the 83 GL1100 headlight be upgraded?

Postby guitarlos » Wed Nov 18, 2009 8:13 am

It has its own enclosed headlight that is sealed.

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Re: Can the 83 GL1100 headlight be upgraded?

Postby WingAdmin » Wed Nov 18, 2009 8:21 am

Without knowing the type, I can't say for sure - but I would look at the type, and see if Sylvania has a SilverStar version of it that could be used:

Sylvania SilverStar

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MSGT-R
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Re: Can the 83 GL1100 headlight be upgraded?

Postby MSGT-R » Sun Nov 22, 2009 10:33 am

The sealed beam of the early style motorcycles of the 70s uses a larger headlight than a car. Sylvania may not support Silverstar technology for that type of bulb. If your bulb is not a sealed beam (the bulb plugs in from the back) the Silverstar bulb replacements will fit and are very easy to install. The biggest PITA is getting the assembly out of an Interstate. ;) The amperage draw is not less than stock, but the light output is far greater for the same value.

As for the rest of the system, to reduce draw, you can start replacing all the old incandescent bulbs with LED technology. The amperage draw is rediculously low and makes the alternator very happy. If you replace the turn signals with LED, the old current-draw flasher will have a fit, so you will also need a constant-rate electronic flasher (that can be found at any auto parts store). The cost is not great but the benefits are.

I'm currently changing over all the lights on my GL1100 Interstate to reduce system draw. The only lights that aren't changable are the tiny ones in the gauges; there aren't any LED equivalants for a bulb that old - only 194 push in types.

Here is a link for the biggest LED candy store you've ever seen!
http://www.customdynamics.com/
It's not the only one out there, but its one of the best.
Don't spook the road sheep.

stonyjohn
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Re: Can the 83 GL1100 headlight be upgraded?

Postby stonyjohn » Mon Dec 28, 2009 9:56 am

if you have just a sealed beam headlamp yes you can buy a halogen light and replace it with that. On my 81 wing it calls for an element 45/50 and i replaced with 50/60 light and made a huge difference in the brightness and distance i can see.

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MSGT-R
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Re: Can the 83 GL1100 headlight be upgraded?

Postby MSGT-R » Sun Jan 10, 2010 7:51 pm

Okay, I got around to taking a picture of my Silverstar headlight. This is on low beam, and the camera is above it's line of focus. The garage lights are on and the walk-thru door is open behind me (daytime):

Here's another (you can see the exra fairing lights better in this one):

The main turn signals in the upper fairing are LED replacements.
Don't spook the road sheep.

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Oldewing
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78 GL 1000

Re: Can the 83 GL1100 headlight be upgraded?

Postby Oldewing » Wed Jan 13, 2010 8:09 am

On my 82 Interstate, I just took the factory H4 out rated at 55/60 and put in a H7, for off road use only :twisted: :mrgreen: :twisted: . Its rated at 60/100 watts, eight or nine years into the test, without any wiring problems or failures.
you can go exactly .4 miles with the petcock turned off.


82 GL1100
68 CB350
06 GL1800

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Re: Can the 83 GL1100 headlight be upgraded?

Postby WingAdmin » Wed Jan 13, 2010 11:08 am

The problem with the larger bulb is twofold:

- overloading already minimally sufficient wiring harnesses
- overheating the bulb reflector/enclosure itself

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Oldewing
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Re: Can the 83 GL1100 headlight be upgraded?

Postby Oldewing » Wed Jan 13, 2010 6:04 pm

Yes sir, I understand that the upgrade is wrong, I was just putting out that I have done it and not had any problems as of yet. These things are our babies, and we treat them as such.


I check for trouble, wireing or fuel or just a grease or two each time I change oil. These borads are for information only, not liabel for "he told me so"

OK, off my box now.

Greg


you can go exactly .4 miles with the petcock turned off.


82 GL1100
68 CB350
06 GL1800


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