LED turn signals & campground illumination - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
V-Strom Modifications and Performance The brag page, good and bad.

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 32 Old 05-16-2009, 10:16 PM Thread Starter
$tromtrooper
 
Keith Falkner's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Sarasota FL
Posts: 2,350
LED turn signals & campground illumination

I wanted brighter turn signals and some way to light a campsite without discharging my battery, and I achieved these objectives for about $25.

I bought this product, called LS-104 at an Auto Parts store:


For about $22 I got two units with 6 white LEDs in each, plus some hardware and a switch I don't need. Short red and black wires exit the middle of each unit. Here are the unmodified units:


I opened the cases and removed the short wires, then installed 6-foot two-wire cables that exit via new holes at the end of each unit. I checked the operation of the units, then glued them shut, sealing the original holes.

I glued these units to the bottom edge of my handguards, with the wires running inward, letting the trailing edge protrude about 5mm behind the trailing edge of each handguard. I used Gorilla glue, which is adequate but messy. Try to find a better glue for this if you do it.

I bought a 12-volt rechargeable battery at a yard sale. It is about 24cm x 8cm x 3 cm, weighs about 600 grams, holds a charge reasonably well, and powers a little TV for a couple of hours. I installed this on the bike's right flank, in a little cavity inside the right rear piece of tupperware. This auxiliary battery is not really necessary, but I prefer to power the LEDs with this instead of the bike's main battery.

Here is the schematic of my auxiliary battery and LED modules:

If you don't want to bother with an auxiliary battery, just ignore the connection to the taillight wire, omit the resistor and diode, and wire from your battery through a fuse to the DPDT switch (left side in the diagram).

The wire to the tailight is the brown wire in the cable that runs along the left side of my 2006 Wee-Strom, and perhaps the same on your Strom. I used the black-and-white wire in the same cable as ground.

Following the schematic, I ran wires from the front turn signals to one end of a DPDT toggle switch, and a wire from the auxiliary battery's positive terminal to the other end of the switch. I wired the positive connection of the LED modules to the middle of the switch. Thus, in one position the LEDs are in parallel with the front turn signals, and in the other position the LEDs are always on, powered by the auxiliary battery.

I left the bike off, with the LEDs on for ten hours, and they were still bright. The auxiliary battery's voltage fell from 13.2 to 12.3 in that time.

The LED modules have a third use. When I ride with the LED modules on, they augment the headlights and give a distinctive appearance to my bike - you will know when Colorado is the Strom in your mirrors.

LED modules only:


LED module augmenting turn signal:


LED modules as running lights:


Close-up of left module from below:


I am very pleased with these LED modules, and I believe they will assist me when I have to set up camp after nightfall. I will be glad to answer questions and provide more photos. Right now the switch is installed poorly, and the wires are a tad sloppy, but I will correct those flaws next week.

Colorado is the name of my Wee-Strom. It came with a VIN ending 1876, the year Colorado became the Centennial State, and it is red, so the name is obviously correct. I certainly enjoyed riding this motorcycle in Colorado, and perhaps the motorcycle enjoyed that fine state as well.

Keith
Keith Falkner is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 32 Old 05-16-2009, 11:08 PM
Stromthusiast!
 
rcacs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Morden, Manitoba, Canada
Posts: 2,557
Send a message via MSN to rcacs
Nice job there Keith, looks like something I might be interested in. More so for the camp lighting.

Cheers,

K5Wee in Kanada (285,500 KM and still going strong)
IF YOU WON'T STAND BEHIND OUR TROOPS.....FEEL FREE TO STAND IN FRONT OF THEM
[IMG]http://i1181.photobucket.com/albums/x438/rcacs/maps/VisitedProvincesMap.jpg[/IMG][IMG]http://i1181.photobucket.com/albums/x438/rcacs/maps/american.jpg[/IMG]
rcacs is offline  
post #3 of 32 Old 05-16-2009, 11:58 PM
Stromthusiast!
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Pacific Northwet
Posts: 651
Cool idea, thanks for the write up.

DL1000K8

So what is it, am I a smart*** or a dumb***? Maybe I'm just an ***hole.
10guy is offline  
 
post #4 of 32 Old 05-17-2009, 12:14 AM
Stromthusiast!
Super Trooper!
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: seattle
Posts: 517
Very nice. Just one thing, my understanding is that, by law, turn signals are supposed to be amber.
Arne is offline  
post #5 of 32 Old 05-17-2009, 09:58 AM Thread Starter
$tromtrooper
 
Keith Falkner's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Sarasota FL
Posts: 2,350
That's a really good point!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Arne View Post
Very nice. Just one thing, my understanding is that, by law, turn signals are supposed to be amber.
I believe you are correct. I have seen lots and lots of rear turn signals that are red, and I reckon lots of older cars have non-amber signals which must be permitted because they were legal when originally licensed. It is my opinion that Florida doesn't put a high priority on enforcing this law.

I do not expect to be challenged by law enforcement on this issue, because I generally drive in a sensible manner, and officers really do have better things to do than pester somebody for using a white light in place of an amber one.

And if I am challenged, I can simply turn the lights on and promise to leave them on until I leave the cop's jurisdiction.

Keith
Keith Falkner is offline  
post #6 of 32 Old 05-17-2009, 07:36 PM Thread Starter
$tromtrooper
 
Keith Falkner's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Sarasota FL
Posts: 2,350
Can you buy this stuff at Canadian Tire?

Quote:
Originally Posted by rcacs View Post
Nice job there Keith, looks like something I might be interested in. More so for the camp lighting.

Cheers,
If you have a problem getting this exact part, and want me to send it, just tell me where. If your address is a secret, I can send it to Grumpty's and you can pick it up there. :rolleyes:

If you wish to build your own from LEDs and stuff, you will want to know the exact voltage to provide for the LEDs you use. There are two 150-ohm resistors in each of these units, but that news is specific to the particular LEDs in the unit, and I don't have any data on the LEDs themselves.

If I were building this anew, I think I would use bare LEDs and drill individual holes in the handguards, glue the LEDs in place there, wire them up in place, and seal the result with marine caulk. Better yet, intersperse white LEDs for illumination with amber/orange LEDs for turn signals, and the switch is a plain SPST. Why didn't I think of that first?

I can't help being an old fart, but so long as I keep learning stuff I am still not a fossil.

Keith
Keith Falkner is offline  
post #7 of 32 Old 05-17-2009, 08:36 PM
$tromtrooper
 
Boondocker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Las Vegas, NV
Posts: 606
That's a very clean setup. The hand guard mounting gives a wide spread, which improves your visibility to other motorists. I'd like to do something like this, but simpler, that is, not try to make turn signals out of them, and wire to a keyed circuit so as to prevent ever leaving them on. I have flashlights, most importantly a headlamp, for camping. Besides, the bike is seldom pointed in the ideal direction for fixed lights to assist my nightime camping endeavours.

Thanks for the imformative write-up.

Uncommonly Sensible
'04 DL650 - Blue, 57,000 miles, well personalized, gone but loved
'08 WR250R - Goes anywhere
2012 Yamaha Super Ténéré - makes the DL redundant
Boondocker is offline  
post #8 of 32 Old 05-17-2009, 08:50 PM
What Kinda Bike Is That?
 
Black Lab's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Mount Desert Island, Maine
Posts: 5,520
Keith,
Excellent write up with pics and wiring diagram!

This is a great idea and a nice show of respect to other campers.

More and more, I am finding, at campgrounds, a "distaste" for bikers. When making an advanced reservation for a campsite and I mention that I am arriving on a motorcycle, I have had the question asked of me more then once, "Is it loud?". Our Harley cousins, with their loud pipes, are really making a reputation for themselves that some of us "quieter types" are starting to have to bare.

Knowing that I was going to end up pulling into campgrounds late in the evening, I too wanted "camp light" that I could set up my tent with, but not blind everyone near me or disturb their peace with my motor running.

What I did was to individually wire a switch to each of my PIAA driving lights. The switches are "hot". Which means, I can turn on and off the lights without touching the ignition, (Yes, I am aware of the pros and cons of doing this.).

This setup has proved its value to me several times by being able to pull into my campsite, turn off my motor, turn off one of my PIAA lights and keep one on and set up my tent, then shut the light off. The light is low to the ground and isn't in anyone's eyes. My routine is pretty quick too.

The switches are marine grade switches. They are mounted into the left handguard where I can tap them with my pointer finger. Covering the body of the switch are distributor lug bolt boots.

Switch on the left, boot on the right.


From the front, the switches look like this.


From the rear they look like this.


The lights themselves are mounted inside some "cages" that I built for them this past Winter and welded to my crashbars.


B.

2007 DL-650 (I gave away in 2012 with 111,000 + miles)
"A word grows to a thought; a thought to an idea; an idea to an act. All the pieces are put together, and the whole is yours."
1942, Beryl Markham: "West With the Night"
"You can talk about doing a thing until everyone finally talks you out of it, or you can actually do the thing"
James Baldwin "Across Islands and Oceans"

Last edited by Black Lab; 05-17-2009 at 08:53 PM.
Black Lab is offline  
post #9 of 32 Old 05-17-2009, 08:50 PM
Stromthusiast!
 
av8or's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Northern AZ
Posts: 708
Send a message via AIM to av8or Send a message via Yahoo to av8or
any chance of a night time, straight on, all lights on from say 10 yards or so away?
just to get an idea of how they look together and contrast

[COLOR=Blue]'07 Suzuki DL1000 V-Strom[/COLOR]
av8or is offline  
post #10 of 32 Old 05-17-2009, 10:16 PM Thread Starter
$tromtrooper
 
Keith Falkner's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Sarasota FL
Posts: 2,350
I am not much of a photographer, you know.

Quote:
Originally Posted by av8or View Post
any chance of a night time, straight on, all lights on from say 10 yards or so away?
just to get an idea of how they look together and contrast
OK, here are some shots with the bike on its floorstand, engine on, LEDs on, and the camera a measured ten yards in front of the bike.

Camera at ground level, and headlights dominate the image. When I get down this low, I am blinded by headlights, and cannot see the LEDs.


Camera about one yard above the pavement.


Camera at eye-level, call it 5'3" (seems I jiggled)


Camera as high as I can reach


I think the color difference between tungsten and LED is striking. This is an easy way to make the image of your bike at night quite distinctive.
Keith Falkner is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome