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Old 04-06-2010, 10:08 AM   #1
A Star Ride
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Default after market headlight kit

Couple questions here & I appreciate any input, including the possible "what were you thinkin"

Question #1:

My bike has a after market headlight kit, ya know the typical 3 headlight system. When I got it the side lights would fade on & off randomnly, and I had a friend "fix" it. 6 months later they stopped working all together, I popped the main headlight assembly open to see the inline fuse cartridge melted, I went to the store, got a new inline fuse assembly, and new connectors and wired it back together like it origionally was. Not knowing what size fuse was correct, I went with a 4 amp considering 2 bulbs at 1.4 amps each. I haven't opened it back up, I'm hoping all I have is a blown fuse & not melted wiring, anyone have a clue what size fuse should be in there? Is my logic of adding the total amperage & rounding up to the smallest available fuse correct?

Question #2:

There is a toggle switch on the outer edge of one of the side lights, when tripped, it turns off the opposite side light only, (not both of them). Is the entire thing wired incorrectly? or is it likely supposed to be this way? I do know when highbeams are on the marker lights both go off (as required by VA law).
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Old 04-06-2010, 10:27 AM   #2
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Size fuses to the wire gauge FIRST - to the load, SECOND in all cases. True whether DC or AC. It's OK to put too-small of a fuse on, but go too large - you end up with melty-parts.

Here's a pretty good thread on it, complete with a table listing ampacities of each wire gauge: How to Determine the Fuse/Wire Size for YOUR Project

And another, with good advice on ADV Rider: Figuring out what Amp fuse and wire gauge to use... - ADVrider
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Old 04-06-2010, 11:19 AM   #3
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The current draw will be approximately: total wattage/12.

A 60 watt bulb pulls about 5 amps.

A 1.4 amp draw would equal: 1.4x12 = 16.8 watts. Unlikely.

You can wire the lights any way you want. Apparently the original installer of your lights was the typical shade tree "expert".
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Old 04-06-2010, 07:15 PM   #4
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per the switch question, that's strange. Do you not have a switch on the handlebars (or nearby) to turn them on and off? If the switch you described is the only one to operate the light(s) then it should be working for both of them.

Based on all you've said, you may want to consider taking a look at how this whole setup was wired, and possibly completely re-do the wiring if necessary to make it right.
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Old 04-06-2010, 11:41 PM   #5
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Thanks guys for the input and yes the switch is the only control for the additional lights, but they come on with the primary headlight & off with highbem, the switch I would assume should kill both regardledss of high or low beam. I was too busy ridn today to pull it again I'm hoping to pull it tomorrow.
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Old 04-07-2010, 09:57 AM   #6
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The fuse was blown, nothing melted this time, I put in another 4 amp hoping it was a fluke (pretty wishful huh?)
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Old 04-07-2010, 10:46 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A Star Ride View Post
The fuse was blown, nothing melted this time, I put in another 4 amp hoping it was a fluke (pretty wishful huh?)
What are the wattage ratings of the two lamps?
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Old 04-07-2010, 11:41 AM   #8
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ASR: you might want to consider a relay kit for your bike. The way most bikes are wired, the entire electrical draw for the headlights goes through some very tiny wires...through the handlebars, the ignition switch, dimmer switch, etc. A relay kit give you a nearly direct feed from your battery to the headlights. With the kit, the switch in the handlebars only has to swich the relays; a fraction of an amp. The main draw is now routed through a heavy guage wire and the relays, resulting in longer switch life, less heat, and much brighter headlights. Here's a link on the subject:
Motorcycle H4 Relay Kits, cheap Worldwide Shipping
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Old 04-07-2010, 06:25 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seruzawa View Post
What are the wattage ratings of the two lamps?
the bulbe are 1.4w each Im running a 4 amp fuse, which blew again today. Think I should go to a 4? 7?
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Old 04-07-2010, 06:28 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kenneth_Moore View Post
ASR: you might want to consider a relay kit for your bike. The way most bikes are wired, the entire electrical draw for the headlights goes through some very tiny wires...through the handlebars, the ignition switch, dimmer switch, etc. A relay kit give you a nearly direct feed from your battery to the headlights. With the kit, the switch in the handlebars only has to swich the relays; a fraction of an amp. The main draw is now routed through a heavy guage wire and the relays, resulting in longer switch life, less heat, and much brighter headlights. Here's a link on the subject:
Motorcycle H4 Relay Kits, cheap Worldwide Shipping
Thanks Ken, but its all greek to me. I wish I knew more about this. I just assume they be wired & stay on anytime the key is on (after the start button is pushed)
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