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Old 10-10-2005, 01:07 AM   #1
sashapave OP
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New Trail Tech HID lights installed

Hi all,

A few weeks back I decided to add some lighting to my KTM, but realized there weren't too many options out there. I wanted something both for night driving and conspicuity.

I could have gone the touratech route, either the under-main-light dual setup (I like to call it the 'stormtrooper'), or the little ones tucked just above the turn signals on the fairing. They're both awesome, and I love touratech gear. But I didn't quite have the cash, and I wanted HID for both lights, not one HID and one halogen like Touratech.

But the main reason I steered clear of Touratech was because of the proximity of the accedssory lights to the main light. I have a very un-proven idea that the further the lights are apart, the more conspicuous the lighting is to on-coming vehicles. If they're bunched up too close together then cars might still not notice me, no matter how bright the lights are. Dumb drivers are looking for cars only, and I think when they see one light it just doesn't register And to me the Touratech lights were just too close in. Great for seeing and light-protection, but not great for others seeing me.

So, I decided to kind of roll my own, kind of.

I read great things about the Trail Tech HID setup. Originally designed for ATV/snow-mobile, but who says they don't work well on a bike. I got the 30w kit.
http://www.trailtech.net/atv_hid_light_kits_stock.htm

I just happened upon the Rex M/C Products light mount for the 950 on cyclegadgets.com
http://cyclegadgets.com/Products/Lig...&kit=CG-KTM950

Costs:
Trailtech kit: $377
Light bar: $80

The kit is very much 'roll-your-own' and doesn't come with instructions. But it was easy enough to figure out and they're really helpful over the phone.

It took about 4 hours to complete the job. I mounted the ballasts in the upper side-fairings. There was plenty of room after the canister-removal. It's not the perfect mounting job, I used 2 very large zip-ties to attach each one to holes drilled in the black inner-plastic parts. The good part is that you can attach the lights directly to the included wiring because the ballasts are so close to the actual lights.

The light bar was super-easy to mount and even came with a horn relocation bracket and very nice hardware/instructions.

I ordered a handlebar switch from trailtech, but I ended up using the included push-button switch because it mounted so easily on the dash. I also ordered the crimping kit which came with hundreds of bullet connectors and nice silicone housing for the connections. A very nice ratcheting crimping tool is also included. This saved me hours of manually attaching wires.

Everything is wired to the switched accessory leads ktm so nicely provides. I don't understand electronics, so it was a guess that the accessory leads provided enough juice and the 10a fuse was strong enough. So far so good.

I'm thrilled with the results. And I'm not just saying this because of how much coin I dropped on the setup.

I took some crude pictures you can see below. The only bummer is that the lights only come in chrome. Apparently Trailtech is releasing a self-contained light with the ballasts built-in, but I didn't want to wait and there's plenty of room for the ballasts. Plus, it's cheaper if I stack it on a rock and break a light.

The lights take a few seconds to 'warm up' to full brightness, so they wouldn't work well as 'flashers.' I figure they don't use much juice so I'm just going to leave them on all the time, day and night.

I can hardly see the stock light with the HID lights on, it just appears as a faint yellowish light, even with the high-beam on.

Here's the pics:

Stock low-beam:


Stock hi-beam:


HID with low-beam:


HID high-beam









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sashapave screwed with this post 10-10-2005 at 01:23 AM
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Old 10-10-2005, 02:21 AM   #2
yigit
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Hi Sasha,


Why didn't you buy directly PIAA lights with the bracket. They looks much cheaper. Aren't they strong as the trailtechs?

Thanks for the advice,

Yigit
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Old 10-10-2005, 07:37 AM   #3
Tennessee Whiskey
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huge difference. thanks for the pictures, i see some of these on my 950 soon.
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Old 10-10-2005, 11:04 AM   #4
sashapave OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yigit
Hi Sasha,


Why didn't you buy directly PIAA lights with the bracket. They looks much cheaper. Aren't they strong as the trailtechs?

Thanks for the advice,

Yigit
Hi Yigit,

The PIAA's are great, but HID's produce more light and use less energy.

-Sasha
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Old 10-10-2005, 11:21 AM   #5
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Do you have the KTM Euro headlight or the stock US one?

Nice write up & pics - thanks.
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Old 10-10-2005, 04:39 PM   #6
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Great Idea

You know what, I think these are a great idea for a lot of reasons. However, I don't think they would last long on my bike. They would get torn off somehow and I fall a lot when I get on it in a spirited manner, or when i'm tired, etc... I want to further discuss the mounting opitions, and the fact that they come only in chome has got to be fixed if not by Trail Tech then by someone... It would be too expensive to put on then have them beak off... I'm not saying that they are puny at all... Just look vulnerable.
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Old 10-10-2005, 05:32 PM   #7
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i thought about getting the euro headlight, and it's a great idea to do so. but for me the issue wasn't just the light, it was also about visibility to other traffic. so i'd rather put the couple hundred dollars for the upgrade into something like this. these lights with the euro light would be spectacular!

i agree with you TUFELHUNDEN, it's not the best solution for everyone. they are moderately exposed. i might try to move them in a bit more, there's lot of room to do so.

currently they're right in line with the front turn signals, which i have yet to touch down (and my bike's been down a bit). however i wouldn't run this light setup without the crash bars, unless it's primarily a street bike.

-sasha
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Old 10-10-2005, 08:41 PM   #8
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Real nice

Hi, Sasha
Man that is just what I have been looking for now just have to save up for it. It is almost the time of year for the deer to start xing I-5 where I have to ride to work and back. Hate to be late for work ya know LOL. Take care Ron
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Old 10-10-2005, 09:54 PM   #9
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Great pics...thanks for taking the time to post this for us.
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Old 10-10-2005, 09:58 PM   #10
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Thumb

Quote:
Originally Posted by sashapave
Hi Yigit,

The PIAA's are great, but HID's produce more light and use less energy.

-Sasha
Yeap. I have a HID on my Ducati. Stock was 55watt and the replacement Hella HID assembly / ignitor pulls 35 watt but produces about twice the light!

Thanks for the writeup!!! The lighting on my Gran Canyon is beyond pathetic (it makes 6v VW bug lights look extravegant) so I'm researching aftermarket alternatives for mounting on my crash bars.
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Old 10-11-2005, 09:13 AM   #11
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So...

Somebody who knows... Please.

What are the power cycle capabilities of the HID ballasts.

For instance. If I connect those lights to the high beam switch will the ballast be fried when I start flashing to pass?

Can they be cycled on and off quickly without damaging the charging system?

Just curious.
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Old 10-12-2005, 05:12 PM   #12
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Once that HID element is up to temp, is draws very little of the current,, its that initial draw on the system, HUGE capasiter to charge up for that burst of power to get that HID working. U can use your passing flicker, and shouldn't notice a difference... My suggestion is to wire it HOT from the acessory , and let the amps be regulated and fused.
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Old 11-14-2005, 04:54 PM   #13
sashapave OP
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UPDATE:

Don't mount these things upside down like I did. Water enters and doesn't have a place to drain, eventually killing a $60 bulb!

Don't ask me how I learned this

I also learned that the self-contained units are finally shipping.

-sasha
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Old 11-14-2005, 06:16 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sashapave
UPDATE:

Don't mount these things upside down like I did. Water enters and doesn't have a place to drain, eventually killing a $60 bulb!

Don't ask me how I learned this

I also learned that the self-contained units are finally shipping.

-sasha
So what are you gonna do? I guess you could drill a weep hole in the bottom of each housing? Or make some custom brackets that attach to the tank guards and allow the lights to be mounted with the post on the bottom?

Too bad the lights weren't designed with "up" or "down" mounting in mind.
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Old 11-14-2005, 06:30 PM   #15
sashapave OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dirtyboy
So what are you gonna do? I guess you could drill a weep hole in the bottom of each housing? Or make some custom brackets that attach to the tank guards and allow the lights to be mounted with the post on the bottom?

Too bad the lights weren't designed with "up" or "down" mounting in mind.
Quote:
Originally Posted by dirtyboy
Too bad the lights weren't designed with "up" or "down" mounting in mind.
I agree, this is a very DIY kit. I'm glad Trailtech is putting it out there as such, but it forces you to learn the hard way.

The problem is with the main mounting bolts. They're hollow and allow water to come in. And there's no drain at the bottom.

I could just drill a drain hole in the bottom, but then water would still be coming in through the hollow mount on the top. i could probably fill the hollow bolt with silicone.... that might be a good idea...

i'll see if i can't flip the lights over on the light bar first.

-sasha
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