Originally Posted by Chris and Shim
The assorted websites that sell LED lights also sell what's called a load equalizer. I'm not sure if it's something specific to the type of LEDs or if it's the load equalizer, but between the two, you can wind up with full time running lights, additional brake lights, and the turn signals.
Older blinker units rely on the bulb's electrical load to determine if the bulb is good or not. This is by design and allows you to get a faster blink when one of your bulbs goes out. LEDs are a much lower load than incandescents, so the older blinkers will think that the bulb is bad and fast-blink. Load equalizers just add more load so that the LED bulb looks like an incandescent bulb to the rest of the electrical system. See http://www.customled.com/products/lo..._equalizer.htm
for more info. Using them essentially negates any of the power savings of switching to LEDs, since you're now using resistors to convert that difference to wasted heat instead (the overall load might still be lower, but you're throwing away some of the power savings to make your new bulbs look more like the old ones to your blinker).
A better solution is to replace your old blinker with a new electronic one. They work differently, and therefore won't fast-blink with LEDs. I've read that the Tridon EP34
should fit our bikes.
It would be possible to get a multifunctional unit that provided load equalization for the LEDs and added running lights. However, with the stock system, the blinker simply powers the lights on and off when you use your turn signal. The new unit would need to wire in elsewhere (usually the taillight) to get constant lighting. It's physically impossible for something that only touches the two stock wires of the rear signals to turn them into running lights (since the stock blinker controls power to those wires and wouldn't act any differently).
For those of you looking to do budget conversions, check out your local laws. Some locations have restrictions on the colors your rear lights can be. My cousin and I got license plate frames with colored plate illumination back in high school. We were driving home one night, me leading and him following, and he got pulled over for it. Simply wiring up your amber turn signals to run all the time might lead to legal troubles.