24 December 2011

FZ1 Mod: Auxiliary Lighting Revisited

The fork swap necessitated a different style of front fender that required me to review how I mounted my Aux Lights.  I wanted to retain the low position that gave me the high visibility triangle pattern.  I also discovered a little problem with my lights.

Eagle Eye with nickel Eagle Eye, 008 LED, Nickel

After an unpleasant exchange of emails with plasmaled.com, I was looking for new lights.  It turns out these "cheap" lights can not be repaired.  Cheap was the guy from plasmaled.com's word, not mine.  I actually think these are quality lights because they never showed any sign of my install failure.  They always came on and stayed on.  If I hadn't been so put off my the email exchange, I would've simply ordered a replacement.  But when the guy called his own product cheap, I decided I'd look for quality low cost replacements.

I really liked the size of the 008 LED modules and since I had brackets I knew worked with them, initially I wanted to stick with that style.  After scouring my usual sources, I had to look in other places.  When I did, I discovered the products have improved and the selection is much bigger now.  It took me back to my category management days when we would be looking for suppliers.  I had to be disciplined just to make sure I got exactly what I wanted and not just the newest greatest thing.

After a couple days of searching, I narrowed it down to a few.
12W tractor offroad LED work light
Round type 4w LED DRL 10w Cree Light

Some of them draw significantly more power than the 3w leds they're replacing.  I really want to have high output low wattage lights that didn't tax my system too much and weren't much bigger than the lights I had.  Since I knew they worked, they remained an option.  However I didn't want to give up on the chance to get something that could put a little more light on the road that easily.  I changed my search parameters and found a bunch of LEDs under 10w that were what I wanted before I settled on these:

Compared to the 008 LED modules, these have about 40% more light output.  I did some converting and figured out they were around the same size as the 008's so I placed an order for a set.  The best part is the price of these is less than one 008 LED!  I guess plasmaled.com can keep their "cheap" lights.  Yep, I'm like a dawg with a bone.

While I was waiting for the lights to show up, I took the old brackets and lights down to the bike to find a place to attach them.  I no longer have front reflectors but I discovered I could use the front brake caliper as a mounting location.

After a little wait, they arrived at the house via the US Postal Service a little sooner than I thought they would.
Eagle Eye with nickel Eagle Eye, 008 LED, Nickel

When I chose these, I was hoping I'd be able to re-use my brackets.  After a few adjustments, they fit but:

They look really bad on the bike.

So it was to the drawing board to find some better looking brackets.  Initially I thought I'd just ride with 'em like that until I was inspired but they looked so bad inspiration came quickly.

I chose to use smaller corner braces.

A coat of rust proof valspar paint later and I had the finished product.

Since these come with longer wires pre-installed, I needed to shorten the old wires.  It wasn't too difficult of an install because I re-used the old wiring.  After changing a fuse, I had light!

It's been raining since I completed the install and really cold nights haven't made me want to make the video.  I won't bother unless someone asks for it.  From the pictures, you can see there's a big difference between these and the 008 LED modules
008 LED on the left, Eagle Eye on the right
I haven't done a test ride yet so I can't say how they look on the road but as of right now I'm very pleased with these replacements.  Now I just need to find a light to stick on my helmet!

If interested, click below to buy these lights.

Thanks for reading,
patrice, theWolfTamer

Caliper mounted light before I painted the braces black.

1 comment:

  1. As a result, people have begun to prefer the led lighting on other types of lamps for a variety of applications.


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