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Old 07-01-2007, 08:36 AM   #1
gen OP
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Thumb 640 LC4 headlight relay

I wanted to add more light to my 640 LC4 Supermoto but didn't want to pay for HID or add aux lights. I remembered reading about a headlight relay kit at WebBikeReview and rode down to Eastern Beaver to get a kit for my KTM.

Jim Davis of Eastern Beaver was kind enough to help me get the H4 Weatherproof kit installed and it made a significant difference. I don't have before/after photos unfortunately, but it is by far the cheapest and best way to get more light out from the KTM.

Jim showed me that the stock KTM wiring is pretty thin, plus the fact that the original headlight current is traveling throughout the whole electrical system means that the light is not as bright as it could be. The headlight relay kit uses a larger gauge wire to bring power directly from the battery to the headlight. This means that the headlight is optimized for light output. I chose to stay with the stock 55/60 watt bulb as I didn't want to take any chances with a higher output bulb.

For those of you who want more light but don't want to go HID, or don't want to add aux lights, a headlight relay kit is a great way to optimize the existing headlight for maximum light output. Jim's a great guy and his kit works as advertised. Highly recommended.

If I get a chance later this week, I'll take a few photos of the install so you can see how I have it set up. I need a permanent place for the relays (not as small as I'd like, or rather the KTM is rather spartan with little room for extras) so the install is not quite finished.

gen screwed with this post 07-01-2007 at 08:46 AM
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Old 07-01-2007, 09:07 AM   #2
meat popsicle
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Thank you for sharing Eastern Beaver's opinion of the stock KTM wiring, which seconds what I have heard from others.

BTW, are you doing a ride report on your trip from your location to Eastern Beaver?
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Old 07-01-2007, 10:02 AM   #3
Donkey Hotey
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Yup, we've discussed this before: most motorcycles have poor factory headlight wiring but the KTM is particularly bad. Between the power and ground wiring I think I measured almost 3V of lost capacity on my Adventure.

The big thing for most people is not knowing where to buy such a kit. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 07-01-2007, 12:31 PM   #4
KTMax m AL
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Wicked

The 640 wiring from the battery and switch to the 3 connector plug at the Head light is pretty lame but from that 3 connector plug to the bulb looks like to be about a 14 guage wire. Now that don't make a whole lot of sense.

It is very easy add a heaver (fused) wire from the battery and use the existing lamp wiring to just trip a relay for that heavier wire that will drive the 55 watt or bigger bulb at the correct voltage and tie the relay in at the HL plug. You can easly do this yourself for about $10.00 if you know your way around electrical circuits at all. You will have to add a heaver wire from the HL to ground also.

I just did this on my 06/640 and the light maybe a bit brighter but not bright enough so I'm adding a pair of small 15 watt - switchable HID's - to the low/beam side in about a week. I may even put in a 30 watt H1 - HID conversion in the existing low beam side if that is not enough. There is a thread in the 640 index on how to use a relay to keep your low beam on all the time so check that out too.

This was after having a way to close incounter with a deer the other night - thank god for the duel disks on the 06/640 with a lesser front brake I would have had that deer for sure. This is twice they have saved my butt.

Don't just try to run a higher wattage halogen with the existing circuit as it would more than likely fail.

KTMax m AL screwed with this post 07-01-2007 at 10:01 PM
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Old 07-01-2007, 12:48 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KTMax m AL
You can easly do this yourself for about $10.00 if you know your way around electrical circuits at all.
That's the magical if. Most people don't know their way around electrical circuits and even installing a product like this will intimidate many. I agree that it's just a couple of Bosch relays, a fused wire and some soldering or crimping but most will buy a product like this and think, "I don't know how it works...it must be effin' magic!"
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Old 07-01-2007, 03:11 PM   #6
gen OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by meat popsicle
BTW, are you doing a ride report on your trip from your location to Eastern Beaver?
Lol, I should have written up a report because the weather report said all sun, so I didn't pack any raingear, but of course it pissed on me on the way down from Tokyo to Shimizu. It was warm enough that it was actually somewhat pleasant. On the way back, I stopped at a camping store and picked up a cheap raingear set which I used for the way home, as it rained on me again going home.

This was actually the first time I had the LC4 on the highway for any extended time and it was fine up to about 120 kph. It didn't have too much left after that, although I'm sure I could adjust that a bit with gearing but I'm hoping not to have it on the highway too often actually.

Next time I'll take photos.
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Old 04-21-2008, 01:10 PM   #7
meat popsicle
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Came across what looks to be an excellent discussion of the various aftermarket halogen bulbs out there, for those of us not HID-equipped.

click here and scroll down to the Scheinwerfermann posts

Can be very technical but the basics are accessible to all.
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Old 04-22-2008, 01:31 AM   #8
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Hey Guys,
Not so fast.
Trust me to want more light than anyone but the real problem is the overall system output.
If it was me I think I would add aux lights and forget the heavy wiring. It's there for a purpose.
Here's my concern.
I am running a heated vest and heated grips.
If I beef up the regular lighting system it will suck more juice and in the USA the lights have to be on at all times.

The marginal system is gonna go into overload when using the other accessories, actually I think it does already.

With aux lights you can pick and choose when to burn the extra watts so less chance for a flat battery.

For more light you could run heavy wire to the brights side only and have switched control and some choice that way.

I run an on/off switch on my low beam ground so I can turn it off off road or cruise on the two lane with just the running bulb lit.
Watts are the issue.

Anyway just my $.02.
b.
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Old 04-22-2008, 08:49 AM   #9
meat popsicle
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Inadequate amperage will damage electrical motors, and I would guess that it damages other electrical components as well. Luke? I am guessing starving electrical components is never a good idea - it makes them wear out quicker, and if lacking enough it can make them fail.

If you need more headroom in the charging system then you should look into HIDs.

PS - here is a source on the Osram Night Breaker H1 halogen bulbs:
http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eB...244126954&rd=1

I will also be getting the Easter Beaver kit and try to do some before/after shots with stock bulbs and stock wiring. Just got to fit it into the queue...
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meat popsicle screwed with this post 04-22-2008 at 09:53 AM
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Old 04-22-2008, 01:36 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by meat popsicle
Inadequate amperage will damage electrical motors, and I would guess that it damages other electrical components as well. Luke? I am guessing starving electrical components is never a good idea - it makes them wear out quicker, and if lacking enough it can make them fail.

You called?

Here's a little reading: http://members.misty.com/don/bulb1.html

The summary:
Bulbs do last longer if they get a lower voltage.
They also produce a lot less light.

According to their numbers, running the bulbs at 10.5V instead of 12.5V will give you 55-60% of the light output, while still drawing 90% of the current. That's lame. That's less light than a 35W headlight should put out, while still using 50W of power.

Yes, the bulb should last forever (unless vibration gets to it) but what's the point if it's hardly putting out any light?
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Old 04-22-2008, 01:51 PM   #11
meat popsicle
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Luke
You called?

Here's a little reading: http://members.misty.com/don/bulb1.html

The summary:
Bulbs do last longer if they get a lower voltage.
They also produce a lot less light.

According to their numbers, running the bulbs at 10.5V instead of 12.5V will give you 55-60% of the light output, while still drawing 90% of the current. That's lame. That's less light than a 35W headlight should put out, while still using 50W of power.

Yes, the bulb should last forever (unless vibration gets to it) but what's the point if it's hardly putting out any light?
Thanks,

your a handy fella. How you liking Oregon? I have tried for years to get setup in Astoria, but...

Hey, maybe I should ask if you'd recommend the Eastern Beaver kit that attaches to the fusebox or the one that has an inline fuse and connects to the battery? I am probably going to go with his kit rather than figure everything out myself.
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Old 04-22-2008, 02:45 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by meat popsicle
Thanks,

your a handy fella. How you liking Oregon? I have tried for years to get setup in Astoria, but...

Hey, maybe I should ask if you'd recommend the Eastern Beaver kit that attaches to the fusebox or the one that has an inline fuse and connects to the battery? I am probably going to go with his kit rather than figure everything out myself.

Oregon's going pretty well. Still trying to work up the nerve to take the XR in to the DMV.

There's not much in the way of jobs outside Portland, unfortunately. There's a reason half my HS classmates moved up here.



Couldn't say about which kit. I hooked up to the battery directly, but my '02 doesn't have a fusebox. Either way, the kit will be a huge timesaver.
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Old 04-22-2008, 04:08 PM   #13
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Also a lot of info (and parts) here; http://www.danielsternlighting.com/home.html
He helped put together a kit for my LC4 Adv that improved things a lot for not a lot of $.
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Old 04-22-2008, 05:52 PM   #14
meat popsicle
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Luke
...

There's not much in the way of jobs outside Portland, unfortunately. There's a reason half my HS classmates moved up here.

...

It took me some ponderin' before I figured out your joke... maybe I should move up there pronto?
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Old 04-22-2008, 10:32 PM   #15
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I did the relay/direct feed trick on my Triumph and that certainly made a big difference. Haven't considered doing it on the 640A as I find the lights bright enough (straight-line performance is fine) running some "Plus 50" bulbs at the standard wattage and the low-with-high mod.

The biggest problem with the lights on the 640A are that they don't shine around corners! My plan is to make up a helmet-mounted spotlight (probably HID) a-la an mtb light, running the power feed down the inside of the sleeve of the jacket. This would plug into a socket on the dash that is wired into the high-beam circuit, so it would be "hands free" operation. Light will always be where you are looking: on the road ahead, not necessarily where the bike is currently pointed.

I don't think LED headlights are that far away... say 5 years till they are available aftermarket like HIDs are now?? Recently I compared a prototype LED mtb light with my 21W HID; the 3x LED was better (narrower beam) for less wattage. The production unit will have better LEDs again. Available at a fraction of the cost of my HID setup, too.
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warewolf screwed with this post 04-23-2008 at 12:29 AM
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