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Old 01-23-2006, 11:00 PM   #1
MeefZah
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Default Anyone ever install a headlight override switch?

To turn the headlight off as needed? I'm assuming the headlight is relay controlled so putting a switch in line with the low voltage / ignition switched terminal should control the headlight. I just have no idea which wire this would be or where to start looking, and a forum search revealed nothing. Ideas? Thanks.
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Old 01-23-2006, 11:15 PM   #2
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The aftermarket "push to cancel"switch has that option on it.
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Old 01-24-2006, 12:26 AM   #3
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you might check this out before turning you'r head light off http://home.ama-cycle.org/amaccess/l...t.asp?state=PA
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Old 01-24-2006, 12:34 AM   #4
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if you insert a sw. in the ground from the bulb ( should be yellow with black stripes. when the switch is closed the bulb will act like the ome. and with it open the headlight will not come on.
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Old 01-24-2006, 02:59 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by daddyjoe
The aftermarket "push to cancel"switch has that option on it.
My KLR came with the aftermarket switch. I've noticed that the bike starts much faster with the headlight off, although I've forgotten to turn it back on a few times (and quickly figured it out).

I think I'll install a relay that shuts off the headlight when the starter is engaged.

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Old 01-24-2006, 08:57 AM   #6
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I haven't done the KLR, yet. I will, the next time I am in the neighborhood with the fairing off.

I have done others (all with wimpy charging systems) and have never had a problem with it. Arizona law does not require a headlight on a MC, so the police part of forgetting to turn it on isn't a factor.

Easiest way is as mentioned. Single pole, single throw switch in the ground wire. No problem. You might want to check local regs, and maybe install a lighted switch to remind you it is off.
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Old 01-24-2006, 09:16 AM   #7
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I did. I have the TWC headlight harness, so it eas easy to add a switch. I added it to only the low beam.
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Old 01-24-2006, 01:26 PM   #8
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I looked at the California law section, But what do they mean by modulating headlight in there description of it ?

Quote:
Daytime Use of Headlight: Required by law-modulating headlight permitted, required for vehicles manufactured during or after 1978.
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Old 01-24-2006, 01:35 PM   #9
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headlight modulator is a high speed flasher--it gives a strobe effect to the headlight. It helps with your visibility in daylight, especially if the sun is behind you.
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Old 01-24-2006, 03:33 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fledglingme
if you insert a sw. in the ground from the bulb ( should be yellow with black stripes. when the switch is closed the bulb will act like the ome. and with it open the headlight will not come on.
Excellent, I will do that when I install my heated grips this weekend. I want to be able to run a heated vest / grips and noticed on previous bikes the charging system can discharge rather quickly if all electrical draws are on and the bike is at a low RPM, such as in town. I figure I can save at least 55W by killing the light as needed, although I'm not too crazy about the decreased safety factor. Better get a Hi-Viz 'Stich..... :lol2:
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Old 01-24-2006, 03:40 PM   #11
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put the switch where it is easy to reach (I only cut the low beam so I can use the hi-lo as an on-off switch). You shouldn't have a problem going down the road when the engine is over 4K, but it really helps the grips warm up at idle.

Anyone know if we have the hole in the light to install the city light bulb? A hyperbright LED in there may just be enough to keep you from getting a ticket.
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Old 01-24-2006, 03:47 PM   #12
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I ordered an aftermarket switch where you can turn the light off, and it has the push to release blinker control. When I get it in I will post up how it works.
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Old 01-24-2006, 03:57 PM   #13
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Please do! I've been wanting one of these. I would like to keep the lights off until the bike is warmed up and ready to go.
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Old 01-24-2006, 05:51 PM   #14
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head light modulator installed on the high beam uses aprox 65% of the normal high beam draw. if you'r trying to meet the law half way, you might install the modulator on the low beam side of the headlight, and still have a low beam modulating and drawing 65% of the normal low beam draw.of course any savings of elect. power is only during day time hours. i've alwas thought that head light modulators were legal in all 50 states, apparently it's a state by state thing.
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Old 04-21-2013, 04:07 PM   #15
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Default Re: Anyone ever install a headlight override switch?

I know this is a really old thread but I don't see another one anywhere. My bike sat through the winter with a Battery Tender attached the whole time. Apparently the Battery Tender didn't do its job completely because the bike won't crank. I can jump it off another vehicle and it starts right up. - If I could turn off the headlight I think it might crank.

I've wanted to be able to turn off my head and tail lights for a long time anyway. I would always keep them on while on public roads, but we have a lot of land and I'd like to be able to sneak up on trespassers.

So the question is: Has anyone got this to work? Is there an aftermarket setup I can order online?
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Old 04-21-2013, 05:46 PM   #16
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Default Re: Anyone ever install a headlight override switch?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bethlehem View Post
I know this is a really old thread but I don't see another one anywhere. My bike sat through the winter with a Battery Tender attached the whole time. Apparently the Battery Tender didn't do its job completely because the bike won't crank. I can jump it off another vehicle and it starts right up. - If I could turn off the headlight I think it might crank.

I've wanted to be able to turn off my head and tail lights for a long time anyway. I would always keep them on while on public roads, but we have a lot of land and I'd like to be able to sneak up on trespassers.

So the question is: Has anyone got this to work? Is there an aftermarket setup I can order online?
Gen1 - The solid brown wire coming from the ignition switch carries power for ALL lights and horn. If one were to patch a relay in there, and then control it the same way the starter relay is by the start PB, then it would switch off ALL lights anytime you are hitting the start PB. You could also add a manual switch to disconnect this new relay from the start PB control and manually just kill the lights.

The problem with this is that the solid brown wire is bonded to a Brown/white wire inside a fat section of the wire harness, and you have to patch this in right there and still leave the Brown/white wire connected as is. Now... just WHERE in that fat wiring harness is that bonded section? It's under the tank, but in the first 6 inches? In the last 6 inches? In the middle? That brown/white wire is where the engine gets it's electrickery from, so no way can cut it off.

You could just do the same mod, but patch the relay in at the headlamp fuse. That will cut off the headlamp but leave the brake light, tail light, and turn signals still working which really isn't going to let you sneak up on trespassers so easy, but would work for the rest of us. As above, it could be wired to just the start PB or a manual switch. Pretty sure I could figure out a way to add sensing the sidestand switch to this so headlamp would remain off is sidestand down, but who wants to trust THAT failure prone switch with their headlamps?

Manual switch only? Just put a switch in at the headlamp fuse. It needs to be 7A or better yet 10A. SPST or SPDT switch type will do the trick. Automotive stores carry them. This will leave brake lights, tail light, turn signals, all still working 100% of the time.

Battery tenders are so cheaply made that they are a problem. If you got a good one you're ok. If you got a flakey one you don't know it till it's too late. Better to hook up a 1 amp 12V battery charger to a separate 24 hour timer and let it be on for only 15 minutes a day, every day, and leave it like that for winter.
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Last edited by WiRider; 04-21-2013 at 05:53 PM.
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Old 04-21-2013, 10:11 PM   #17
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Default Re: Anyone ever install a headlight override switch?

Happy Trail has a swap in replacement for your left hand controls that's 85 bucks. I have installed three of them - mine and my two brother's bikes. I don't remember where I bought them but HT appears to have the identical one that I installed. I absolutely love it. I have caught myself not turning on the lights during the day but never at night and it's not too often. It becomes part of the routine pretty quickly. Rolling into driveway or shutting down - flip the switch off. ...getting things started, lights on choke off. I am really happy with the directional cancel push button as well. I don't find that I use the "brights flasher" but others may use that feature.
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Old 04-22-2013, 07:52 AM   #18
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Default Re: Anyone ever install a headlight override switch?

If you move the headlight ground wire to the starter terminal there will be no headlight when cranking and headlight on when key on and not cranking.

That will work as an auto headlight shutoff during cranking which is what you seem to be interested in.

Best,

Jeff
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Old 04-23-2013, 10:17 AM   #19
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Default Re: Anyone ever install a headlight override switch?

Jeff,
Have you tried your suggestion?

I think it is a brilliantly elegant hack! (in the good sense of the word). I guess it relies on the starter current being large enough to render the headlight current insignificant. What do you think the currents are? I am tempted to try this.

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Old 04-23-2013, 03:59 PM   #20
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Default Re: Anyone ever install a headlight override switch?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffsaline View Post
If you move the headlight ground wire to the starter terminal there will be no headlight when cranking and headlight on when key on and not cranking.

That will work as an auto headlight shutoff during cranking which is what you seem to be interested in.

Best,

Jeff

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Last edited by WiRider; 04-23-2013 at 04:05 PM.
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