Best LED Headlight Retrofit


Information and questions on GL1500 Goldwings (1988-2000)
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JohnO28
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Best LED Headlight Retrofit

Post by JohnO28 » Sun Mar 18, 2018 1:51 pm



Looking to upgrade my stock headlights and have done a bunch of reading but looking for some more input from all you guys.. Kind of leaning towards the Pathfinder LED Plug and Play upgrades.. Anyone use these and if so can I get a review as well as any recommendations for something else or better.
Thanks guys...



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Mh434
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Re: Best LED Headlight Retrofit

Post by Mh434 » Sun Mar 18, 2018 2:35 pm

I have the Pathfinders, and they're excellent.

WingAdmin did an excellent review, and I did my own here: viewtopic.php?f=6&t=33306

There are now lots of aftermarket (i.e. "offshore") alternatives, some of which are excellent, and some of which are not. It can be a bit of a crap shoot, but you can save a bunch of money. If you're going to try an "offshore" alternative, be VERY sure to check all the reviews of the seller & product first.

If you go with Pathfinder, I can assure you that their after-sales support is outstanding. I had a problem with one of my bulbs, and they not only sent a replacement, but an entire kit, immediately, and without question. Sometimes the old expression holds: "Pay a lot now & cry now. Pay a little now, and cry later", so there's a lot to be said in favor of "Made in the USA".

JohnO28
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Re: Best LED Headlight Retrofit

Post by JohnO28 » Sun Mar 18, 2018 2:39 pm

Thank you. Will check it out

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bellboy40
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Re: Best LED Headlight Retrofit

Post by bellboy40 » Sun Mar 18, 2018 4:22 pm

I will agree with MH434 about the Pathfinder LED headlights. I have a set on mine also they they are a good upgrade from the stock ones. I found their after sale service to be fantastic also. I had one of mine quit burning just about a month or so after I put them in. I got in touch with SoCal Moto gear and after some questions and a picture of the unit not working, they sent me out a new headlight without waiting for the return shipment of the old one. I recommend them.

jer2000se
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Re: Best LED Headlight Retrofit

Post by jer2000se » Mon Mar 19, 2018 5:41 pm

attached is a picture with one pathfinder and one OEM bulb, big difference
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Lutzinmn
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Re: Best LED Headlight Retrofit

Post by Lutzinmn » Mon Mar 19, 2018 6:03 pm

Has anyone tried the Opt7 FluxBeam or FluxBeam X led headlights?

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Mh434
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Re: Best LED Headlight Retrofit

Post by Mh434 » Tue Mar 20, 2018 12:08 am

One thing I'd caution about - all of the LED halogen-replacement headlight bulbs make a fair bit of heat. Nowhere near as much as a halogen, but certainly enough to fry an LED.

For this reason, all of them have some kind of cooling device or heat synch. I don't think the ones with little mechanical cooling fans are a great idea, personally, because, while the LED's themselves have (theoretically, anyway) a very long lifespan, possibly as long as the vehicle's projected life, a small mechanical fan doesn't. If (or when) the little cooling fan gets gummed up or burns out, the LED emitters will follow minutes later. You won't have any warning - the LED will simply wink out, for good.

On the other hand, passive heat synchs are just that - passive. They're there, all the time, and can't fail.

Just my $.02' worth...

madmonkey
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Re: Best LED Headlight Retrofit

Post by madmonkey » Sat Mar 24, 2018 8:08 pm

I installed the pathfinders on my bike; I also just finished an install of a Nilight 12inch combo LED light bar. I custom made brackets off the 2 fairing mount screws under the chin. But if a pain but ever worth it. I wired the light into the high beam circuit.
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Lutzinmn
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Re: Best LED Headlight Retrofit

Post by Lutzinmn » Sat Mar 24, 2018 9:48 pm

Is there issues with scattered light with pathfinders? I have been reading that on other sites.

JohnO28
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Re: Best LED Headlight Retrofit

Post by JohnO28 » Sat Mar 24, 2018 9:50 pm

My understanding is it depends on rhe year if your bike because of the glass on the headlight housing

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Mh434
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Re: Best LED Headlight Retrofit

Post by Mh434 » Sun Mar 25, 2018 10:29 am

Lutzinmn wrote:
Sat Mar 24, 2018 9:48 pm
Is there issues with scattered light with pathfinders? I have been reading that on other sites.
The early model Pathfinders had an issue with the fore/aft placement of the emitters on the stalks, where they were equidistant from the reflector. This resulted in being able to focus for high beam, or low beam, but not both. They've since fixed that.

There shouldn't be any problem with the Pathfinders in any headlight system designed for H-4 halogen-style bulbs. Essentially, ALL headlight reflectors & dispersion designs in the headlight glass are designed to work with the identical bulb design (H-4). So, ANY LED that has its emitters placed precisely the same as those in an H-4 bulb should focus exactly the same as its halogen counterpart. For example, the Pathfinders designed for my 'Wing should also work perfectly well in my Miata & my Ford Escape.

All of the focusing & dispersion of light in a headlight unit are governed by the headlight's reflector and front glass, regardless of the type of bulb inside, provided that the emitters in the bulb (whether LED or halogen) are positioned correctly relative to the reflector.

Hope that helps...

Lutzinmn
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Re: Best LED Headlight Retrofit

Post by Lutzinmn » Sun Mar 25, 2018 10:56 am

Thanks for clearing that up. I will look into them again.

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bellboy40
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Re: Best LED Headlight Retrofit

Post by bellboy40 » Sun Mar 25, 2018 1:04 pm

I have both a 1994 and a 2000 with the Pathfinder LED bulbs and they both have good light output. I think they work well in both cases.

Lutzinmn
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Re: Best LED Headlight Retrofit

Post by Lutzinmn » Fri Apr 13, 2018 5:36 pm

I ended up with the new pathfinders along with matching position lights. They look great. Excited to see how they are at night. That will have to wait though. Bike torn apart for coolant leak at thermostat gasket.

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C-dub
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Re: Best LED Headlight Retrofit

Post by C-dub » Fri Apr 13, 2018 6:48 pm

madmonkey wrote:
Sat Mar 24, 2018 8:08 pm
I installed the pathfinders on my bike; I also just finished an install of a Nilight 12inch combo LED light bar. I custom made brackets off the 2 fairing mount screws under the chin. But if a pain but ever worth it. I wired the light into the high beam circuit.
So far I've only installed the Pathfinder fog light kit with daytime running lights and integrated turn signals. I thought I would do the headlight upgrade first, but that'll be next. After seeing your setup all I can say is, WOW. That is a lot of light!!!

I thought I was getting good lighting with my fogs and the OEM headlights. I still want to change out my headlights after seeing how yellow they are.
I am not and have never been a LEO. My avatar is in honor of my friend, Dallas Police Sargent Michael Smith, who was murdered along with four other officers in Dallas on 7.7.2016.

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Happytrails
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Re: Best LED Headlight Retrofit

Post by Happytrails » Sat Apr 14, 2018 1:22 pm

Just installed a set. Nice white light. Easy clean install. :D
1991 GL1500 SE Anniversary Edition
Sun Flare Gold Metallic
Vallant Brown Inset

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bellboy40
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Re: Best LED Headlight Retrofit

Post by bellboy40 » Sat Apr 14, 2018 2:47 pm

Yes, they are not very hard to install. Take a ride after dark and let us know what you think.

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Happytrails
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Re: Best LED Headlight Retrofit

Post by Happytrails » Sat Apr 14, 2018 4:13 pm

Will do. Last time I rode into work early in the morning my HIDs must have been weak because they didn't seem very bright. Hoping to see a difference in the dark. Thunderstorms moving in so will have to wait for that ride. You were right the LED temp matches the foglights/position lights real good. :D
1991 GL1500 SE Anniversary Edition
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Vallant Brown Inset

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curtm
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Re: Best LED Headlight Retrofit

Post by curtm » Sat Apr 14, 2018 7:39 pm

Well all i can say is they cost me $18.00. These are amazing for the price
Guess i am a little frugal

Curt
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madmonkey
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Re: Best LED Headlight Retrofit

Post by madmonkey » Sun Apr 15, 2018 8:46 pm

So far I've only installed the Pathfinder fog light kit with daytime running lights and integrated turn signals. I thought I would do the headlight upgrade first, but that'll be next. After seeing your setup all I can say is, WOW. That is a lot of light!!!

I thought I was getting good lighting with my fogs and the OEM headlights. I still want to change out my headlights after seeing how yellow they are.
Took it out last night for a nice night ride, the light bar is unbelievable. On the back roads out here in Eastern CT, it’s incredibly bright with my high beams. Lights the whole damn road, sides of the road, trees above and half a mile in front of me! Good buy for $20.



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