Lighting questions - Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Forum : Kawasaki VN750 Forums
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-27-2006, 11:11 PM Thread Starter
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Lighting questions

I have several questions about lights on the Vulcan.

First, I'm thinking about changing all the turn signals and brake lights to LED bubls. I'll need a new flasher for the LED signals. Its just a thought, and I figure it will cut down the watts used quite a bit possibly freeing up stator capacity for other electrical accessories in the future. Maybe an electical vest or something, though we are heading out of winter now, so its not high on my list. The brake light will also come on faster when I apply the brakes.
Any thoughts or comments?

Secondly, I've thought that the extra driving lamps looked really nice, and helped add some visiblity to the bike. I've been thinking about adding some, but I don't want to tax the electrical system. My idea is to buy some cheap driving lights, gut them, and put in LED bulbs. This will be more for looks than looking, but I don't think it will tax the system that much. Maybe it will add a few watts draw. Coupled with the first mod, the extra lights will still end out less than the original tail, running, and license plate lights.

Finally, I have a bit of a problem. The front brake lever is not turning on the brake light sometimes. I removed the switch after figuring it was a complete writeoff, and tested it. It worked, so I cleaned the contacts, and put it back on the bike. Intermittantly it failed to work, and I noted the lever required a lot of pull to turn the light on. I filed down the switch a bit to get it to come on sooner, but its still intermittant. I'm not sure if its the wiring or the switch. I'm going to probably clean or replace the spade connectors Tuesday, and file the switch down some more. However, do you guys think that is probably the switch thats faulty or maybe it is the connections?

The rear brake light switch was also "sticking" a bit. How do I get it to move a bit better? WD-40 around the switch maybe?

Oh, I accidently touched a syntetic glove to the right pipe near the cylinder and brake pedal. Better the glove than my hand, but now I have black plastic crap on my pipe. Whats the best way to remove this?

Thanks!
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-28-2006, 11:21 AM
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for your brake light problem... Are you using aftermarket levers? If so, you may need to file on the lever itself to get the switch to work properly.

Deuce (Loran Naperville IL)
1995 VN750 (Black w/ 2004 tins - no teal)
2003 VN750
Both have: - F&S Bags & brackets
- Corbin seat w backrest
- Progressive suspension.
- Kury iso goldwing grips
2 1983 V65 Magnas
2 1985 V65 Mangas (1 which is in many parts)
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-28-2006, 10:03 PM Thread Starter
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I'm guessing they are aftermarket. They are all chrome and shiny. They came with the bike when I got it, so I'm not sure. I think the switch is working now, but its hard to say.

Anyone have any opinions on my other questions?
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-28-2006, 11:28 PM
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pipe cleaning

I won't vouch for this method but I've read that very fine steel wool will remove the plastic without harming the chrome.

Rckmtn
Dennis Huff
Cheyenne, Wy.
05 VN 750
KURYAKYN grips, helmet locks, and highway pegs
Spitfire windshield
Saddleman saddlebags/sissybar bag
Highwayman gelseat with Protac backrest
self canx turnsignals
Diamondstar headlight modulator
Jardine 2 into 2
MCC turn signal relocator and floorboards
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KURYAKYN LED voltmeter
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-01-2006, 12:03 AM Thread Starter
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The dealership today told me that WD-40 and a razor blade were my best bet.

I replaced the regulator today. I relocated it behind the left side cover. I think its working, but I wasn't able to test it as much as I'd hoped to. I'll have to check again tomorrow.
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-01-2006, 12:09 AM
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Lighting answers.....

I love the Led brake idea, currently making my own using some luxeon leds (much much brighter, the "aftermarket" ones from signal dynamics from what i have seen are slightly dimmer than stock, but that is my 2 cents). Dianna mentioned that you'll need a new flasher for the turn signals. Signal dynamics makes one for leds i think. Here is another that i am interested in http://www.trickflasher.com/2005/RC_4.htm. Just make sure it is designed for low load circuts.

Driving lamps, eh? Leds? i honestly don't know how usefull they will be unless u shell some cash out. Have you seen any led flashlights yet? they are ok till you hit the high and super flux leds(i.e. Luxeon, Gold dragon, Cree Xlamp). I have a T-3 Inova (@$50) on ebay that i use as my emergency flashlight. Uses a 3watt Luxeon with optics and runs on 2 photo lithiums runtime is 10 hrs i believe-2 are at full strength. Optics are key here. This light easily outshines my Maglite 2D. You can get optics for the Luxeon stars very easy both plexishine through type and reflector. the other brands you will need to have them custom made. But it gives you an idea of making somthing useful instead of just looks. I think the new ones put out 120 lumens. point of reference a 35 watt halogen puts out i think 500. still that would be 5 LED's at 3 watts a peice=15 watts used. Lifespan makes the cost worth it though. One idea for ur lic. plate. there are some LED bolts i saw somewhere online for cars lic plates. Should be an easy adaption.

Electronics are a hobby of mine, so any questions, just drop me a line at [email protected] just put vn750 in the subject to avoid my spam eating filters.

'04 Vn750
Currently Installed
nat'l cycle deflector shield
westco 12v30 MF, 30A/h w/ 350 CCA's w/ custom box
TOC stator cover w/ Frankenstator mod!
R/R relo

Soon to have (own or on order)
TOC ACCT's
Mez's 110-FRT 170/80-Rear
Custom rear fender and tail light
Givi hard bags w/ custom rear turn signals


Band Engineer/Webmaster for Josey Contreras Tejano Band
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-01-2006, 12:22 AM Thread Starter
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Well, my understanding is that driving lights would tax the electrical system too much, so my idea was just to put the LED lights in driving light housing partly for looks, and party to be seen, but I figured it wouldn't really give out a lot of light at night. Then I ran my bike in the total darkness tonight and I think the light really sucks, so I might decide to put some real driving lights on my bike, or probably better yet, don't drive on unfamiliar roads in the dark.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-01-2006, 12:24 AM Thread Starter
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Oh these are the bulbs I was thinking about using.
http://www.superbrightleds.com/tail-brake-turn.html

Its still kinda in the planning stages. I've got some maintance to do, and I'd rather go for a windshield than LED lights right now, so I might not get a chance or money to do the LED light mods until later.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-01-2006, 12:30 AM
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NO!!!!!! dont use those, they suck lol.... might as well put a mini mag bulb in there. if anything use these http://www.customdynamics.com/motorc..._LED_Clusters_

HEADLIGHT UPGRADE--- i put in a sylvania silver star bulb...much brighter, can evern ride with my tinted visor at night (not recommended on darkest of roads). love it over stock... down the road though hid upgrade using tsx projectors... one headlight and one fog( gonna take out the cut off mask)

'04 Vn750
Currently Installed
nat'l cycle deflector shield
westco 12v30 MF, 30A/h w/ 350 CCA's w/ custom box
TOC stator cover w/ Frankenstator mod!
R/R relo

Soon to have (own or on order)
TOC ACCT's
Mez's 110-FRT 170/80-Rear
Custom rear fender and tail light
Givi hard bags w/ custom rear turn signals


Band Engineer/Webmaster for Josey Contreras Tejano Band
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-01-2006, 12:34 AM
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keep in mind ur tail light produces about 80-100 lumens at stop and "regular leds" are rated in MCD's milli candela. a rough conversion means that an 8000mcd led puts out 8 lumens......yes you red that right you need @100 leds to equal ur stock bulbs....

'04 Vn750
Currently Installed
nat'l cycle deflector shield
westco 12v30 MF, 30A/h w/ 350 CCA's w/ custom box
TOC stator cover w/ Frankenstator mod!
R/R relo

Soon to have (own or on order)
TOC ACCT's
Mez's 110-FRT 170/80-Rear
Custom rear fender and tail light
Givi hard bags w/ custom rear turn signals


Band Engineer/Webmaster for Josey Contreras Tejano Band
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