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JimVonBaden 11-27-2007 08:25 PM

HID Conversion on a 12GS (pictorial)
After many many promises, I decided to do a short pictorial on how to install a set of HID lights in my R1200GS. This pictorial is done with lots of extra parts removed for clarity. I wont be telling you what tools to use, or torques. This type of pictorial doesnít lend itself well to it, but you should easily be able to do what I did.
Here are the lights in the box. Mine were the fat ballasts, with the igniters built in. I have done the ones without the ballast built in, and they are definitely easier to mount, though basically in the same place.
I removed the instruments for the job to make it easier to see, but it is definitely not needed. Here are the High (left) and low (right) covers. Just pop the caps off by twisting them counterclockwise.
Here is a cap before drilling the 23mm hole. I used a Dremmel tool to do mine.
Here is the same cap after removing the material. Interestingly, it is exactly the same size as the indents in the caps. I bet you know why?
Simply push the wires through the hole, then pull the grommet in place. They recommend adding some sealant, but I didnít. I figure they will seal just fine as is.
Here are both of them mounted. The wiring looks clean and secure in the caps.
Here is the right ballast mount. You can see it went to the screw holding the oil line.
This is the other mount, shown to illustrate the original shape. I bent it with pliars.
Now you can see it is a tight fit with the beak installed. But it is clean. I added some tie straps to secure the ballast to the mount, and firm it in place as well.
The right ballast fit in, and cleanly. With everything put back together, and the wiring secured, it is nearly invisible.
On the left side, the ballast goes into the same place. It is a tight fit, and you will have to play with it a bit, but it will fit. The slimmer ballast would have the advantage here.

Now lets take a look at the results:
Low HID. Clean white, but not too blue. This is the 4300 kit.

I then added a second GS, with Motolights, and compared them side-by-side.

Note that the bike on the left is completely stock with 35 watt Motolights. My bike has both HIDs, and 50 watt Motolights.
Low beam, you can see the difference here.
High beam, even more obvious.
Both bikes with Motolights and High Beams.

It seems obvious to me, especially after riding at night, that the HID lights are definitely superior, and not as susceptible to dimming at idle with Gerbings and Servos going.
Here is what the bulb looks like installed in the low beam.
Donít forget to keep the old H7 bulbs, just in case. This procedure is completely reversible, and if an HID goes out, you can swap in the old H& in minutes.

Jim :brow

NBeener 11-27-2007 08:33 PM

Nice walk-through, Jim. Thanks.

sweptwingnut 11-27-2007 08:38 PM


NBeener 11-27-2007 08:44 PM


Originally Posted by JVB
and not as susceptible to dimming at idle with Gerbings and Servos going.

Presumably, that's their reduction in draw vs. the halogens, but ... that dimming at idle on the halogens, in theory, was also shortening their lifespan (I wonder if there was a connection between voltage drop at idle and the H7 bulbs you folks have gone through).

The filament has to burn at a certain heat before the halogen gas forces the suspended particulate matter back ON to the filament, increasing its lifespan. If that cycle breaks (voltage drops), the lifespan shortens.


michnus 11-27-2007 09:12 PM

I have done a HID conversion on my 1200, but only the low beam, I realised straight on, the low beam is to bright for everyday use, it irritates drivers in front of you, also because the 1200 headlight just sits high enough to reflect right into a cars rear view mirror, people were constanly adjusting their rear view mirrors.

Subsequently have moved it to the high beam and still having a normal H7 globe in the low beam.

configurationspace 11-27-2007 09:21 PM

missing part to your story...
How do the electrics work?

Are your HIDs drawing straight off the battery, or are they hooked up solely to the wires for the stock lights. If so, what did it take to adapt the plugs?

and... do your lights come on before you hit the start button?

SocalRob 11-27-2007 10:32 PM


Originally Posted by configurationspace
How do the electrics work?

Are your HIDs drawing straight off the battery, or are they hooked up solely to the wires for the stock lights. If so, what did it take to adapt the plugs?

and... do your lights come on before you hit the start button?

At least the new kits draw their power off the OEM headlight wiring. Its a 100 percent plug & play other than drilling out the cap like Jim did and other than having to mount the ballasts. IMO the new thin ones are worth the extra bucks. I really like that its so easy to reverse, even along side the road, should your HID or ballast ever crap out.

I haven't found the low beam too irritating to other drivers after a couple of adjustments on aiming.

Hey Jim, wasn't sure your kit would still work after the long time on the shelf:lol3

volbeat22 11-28-2007 05:25 AM

From who did you buy your kit?

FrisbeeR1200GS 11-28-2007 05:43 AM

As mere mortals, we would be lost in the wilderness without the sage wisdom and "wrenching skills" of the Grand Master....and then he shares so unselfishly. Is He Good or What??

Naturally I'm talking about Jim V.

Rick Lee 11-28-2007 06:35 AM

So who has put HID's in their aux. lights? My low and high beam HID's are 6000k. I think I want a contrast color in my Hella Micro DE's when I get them. I'm thinking of 3000k HID's them or maybe just amber H3 filament bulbs.

Xeraux 11-28-2007 06:43 AM


Originally Posted by MikeyD
From who did you buy your kit?


GB 11-28-2007 06:51 AM

There are 2 ways to wire the HID kits... I'll let Jim tell the story...

Just FYI: If you don't have servo/ABS, you can stash the ballasts under the tank, there's a lot of space there!! :evil

Hotspice 11-28-2007 07:10 AM

Looks good Jim..

It looks like you have a tight fit here:

Were you able to get your accessory plug on the beak back in after the ballast install?

volbeat22 11-28-2007 07:16 AM

So are you getting a High Beam and a Low Beam - or do you now have two of the same?

heetseeker 11-28-2007 07:20 AM

That didn't take long
Thanks for the info and pics. Looked simple enough, cheap enough, and effective enough for me. There is now a set coming to me from accross the pond. With shipping: $90

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