LED Headlight install


Page 1 of 11 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 108

Thread: LED Headlight install

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Vegas
    Posts
    765
    Post Thanks / Like

    LED Headlight install

    Ordered an LED kit from Ebay after reading some good things on some miata forums.

    My reason for doing this was reducing the load on the electrical system to free up more for other accessories. Mostly, my amp in the fairing which is cutting out during big bass hits due to voltage depression under load (voltage drop over the wiring harness is only .3V, so it's not the wires). Anyhow, back on topic:

    The install is fairly easy, save for the lack of space in the stock headlight bucket.

    The kit arrives in a well protected foam packed box:


    The instructions are useless but unnecessary. The emitters are large, larger than I've seen in this kind of package and have no lens over the top of the emitters. This is a good thing, the light will act more like the filament in a standard headlight bulb this way, and not be diffused onto the reflector causing more light 'loss' or 'spill' than wanted. (there there is some, read on):


    First step was removing the bulb, which is fairly straight forward so I won't document it here.

    The bulb comes right out of the package and goes into the headlight housing:


    Next, remove the dust/water grommet off the old bulb and install it over the tail of the LED:


    Now you can install the little fan/heat-sink:


    Next, you need to make sure there's sufficient space in the headlight bucket. The little fan will sit just about .75" from the bottom of the bucket. You can see and feel it through the back of the HL opening:


    Now you can hook-up the little driver box:


    Hook up the corresponding wires on the box to the light, and do a quick key-on check to make sure it lights up and the fan spins. Now you can try to get the headlight back in and re-arrange and keep checking until it seats without any kind of undue force. Install the screws and check through the back of the headlight to make sure the fan is clear of obstruction. Do another key-on test to make sure the fan spins.

    Now you can enjoy your new headlight!


    Random note: I'm not sure the fan will do anything. The plate attached at the back has very little mass or surface area, and so I don't see it having much effect either. I think it's only function is to make people think it's higher-powered than it truly is (made in China, afterall) and/or to deal with stagnant air. I'm not anticipating any issues, and if I have any I'll update to reflect those. I intend to test at some point without the fan to see if it does anything meaningful. Wish I had a temperature probe..

    Comparison of silverstar bulb versus the LED. The light is whiter, but does not cast any blue light. The 'spill' is wider and the cutoff isn't as defined as the stock bulb. I'm not sure what effect this will have on driving in traffic, but I'm sure it can be mitigated with proper adjustment. I did notice the 'hot spot' is a tad higher, but after removal and re-install (for these photos) it's about even which bodes well for the alignment and lens effect of the stock headlight housing. I'm looking forward to testing out on some dark roads with the increased spill, as I anticipate it being more of a benefit by lighting up the side of the road better, and also illuminating signage further ahead.

    The increased spill is likely due to the very large emitter which is round and flat versus a long skinny element.

    Low beam silverstar bulb:

    Low beam silverstar bulb with engine running:

    LED light (did not change with engine on/off):


    For the nerds: Camera settings F4.0, ISO 100, 1/30th exposure for all pictures. Taken from a tripod set at the fender, APS-C size sensor at 35mm (not equivalent).

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Columbus
    Posts
    3,612
    Post Thanks / Like
    Looks really good

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Bridgewater
    Age
    25
    Posts
    20
    Post Thanks / Like
    In your opinion, how much better is the light throw when riding? Thanks! Great write up!
    Mike

  4. Remove Advertisements
    VTX Cafe
    Advertisements
     

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Cleveland
    Posts
    43
    Post Thanks / Like
    The new light looks good!

    The fan wont help at all being thats it's inside our small headlight housing, all the LED lights out there right now where designed to be installed in open air area (aka cars,trucks,etc). LEDs number one killer is head. So careful about on 90+ degree days.

    LEDs and HeatBecause LED lighting systems don’t radiate heat the way an incandescent or halogen light bulb does, the heat produced from the power going into the product must be drawn away from the LEDs. This is usually done with a heat sink, which is a passive device that absorbs the heat produced and dissipates it into the surrounding environment. This keeps LEDs from overheating and burning out. Thermal management is probably the single most important factor in the successful performance of an LED product over its lifetime because the higher the temperature at which the LEDs are operated, the more quickly the light will degrade, and the shorter the useful life will be.
    LED products use a variety of unique heat sink designs and configurations to manage heat, so they may look very different from each other. Regardless of the heat sink design, all LED products that have earned the ENERGY STAR have been tested to ensure that they properly manage the heat so that the light output is properly maintained through the end of its rated life.

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Vegas
    Posts
    765
    Post Thanks / Like
    I intend to find out how it does in worse than 90 degrees!

    I plan to keep an eye on it to see if heat becomes a problem or not. Most cars and trucks don't have much airflow around their headlights either, and I'm also not convinced this kit was designed for anything in particular! I'm sure the fan exists more as an ego booster than anything. It's tiny, it's smaller than a quarter, and while keeping air non-stagnant can help quite a lot, any kind of breeze or movement would cause more passive cooling than this thing will.

  7. #6
    Volvo Guy is offline Senior Member Michigan Riders Group
    Indiana Riders Group
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Mishawaka, IN
    Posts
    506
    Post Thanks / Like
    I was just looking at these earlier today - I look forward to reading more once you get some time to do some night riding with it. Thanks for sharing!

  8. #7
    sumdatx's Avatar
    sumdatx is offline Deplorable Member
    Virginia Riders Group
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Vinton,Virginia
    Age
    68
    Posts
    5,358
    Post Thanks / Like
    Great writeup and pics. And good info about the led heat/life cycle. Still considering this an option when the HID burns out and since all my other lights are already led -- hey, do the headlight too. Hopefully I have a good while left on the HID.
    Thanks for sharing, always interested in ways to improve.

  9. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Philadelphia
    Age
    30
    Posts
    134
    Post Thanks / Like
    ive been looking into getting one of these, which kit exactly did you buy?

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    Glendale
    Age
    42
    Posts
    97
    Post Thanks / Like
    I'd be interested in the higher temp tests as well, especially since I live in Phoenix. Hell, in the summer, it's over 90 degrees as our LOW temp at night.

  11. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Columbus
    Posts
    3,612
    Post Thanks / Like
    Something else I was wondering, does it have a hi/low option?

Page 1 of 11 123 ... LastLast

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

    Similar Threads

    1. led headlight
      By MedicMoe in forum Honda VTX 1800 Forums
      Replies: 9
      Last Post: 03-17-2013, 03:33 AM
    2. Question What are the best and easiest-to-install engine/body LED's??
      By Posty in forum Honda VTX 1300 Forums
      Replies: 8
      Last Post: 03-12-2013, 12:06 AM
    3. Question Tsukayu LED Install
      By matmantn in forum Honda VTX 1800 Forums
      Replies: 7
      Last Post: 05-23-2012, 08:17 AM
    4. Hyperlight LED accent install..chk it out
      By bgreer in forum General VTX/Motorcycle Topics
      Replies: 6
      Last Post: 03-09-2010, 12:04 AM
    5. LED Install this weekend
      By TAZ4VTX in forum Honda VTX 1300 Forums
      Replies: 7
      Last Post: 06-04-2009, 11:23 AM

    Tags for this Thread

    Bookmarks

    Posting Permissions

    • You may not post new threads
    • You may not post replies
    • You may not post attachments
    • You may not edit your posts
    •