r100gs taillight mods?

Discussion in 'Old's Cool' started by bmwblake, Feb 23, 2007.

  1. bmwblake

    bmwblake upside down parker

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    what have you guys done to get more rear visibility? i bought one of the LED bulbs from rick at motorad and it failed within 500 miles. i was on the way back from NC last night and had to pull over and fish out a spare 1157 to replace the 30 dollar LED bulb. i wasn't very happy.

    i have an LED bar that mounts to my license plate that i'm going to install, but was wondering what else you guys might be running that is bright and works well.

    please dont mention the 110 dollar brake! unit. that's a bit rich for me.
    #1
  2. Solo Lobo

    Solo Lobo airhead or nothing

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  3. jtwind

    jtwind Wisconsin Airhead

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    I had one of Ricks LED bulbs fail also, as did a pal. They also seem to be too heavy and the socket is slightly small. They tend to bounce and flicker, maybe that's why they go bad. Rick was good about it and refunded both of out money. Me thinks we weren't the first.

    The hyper lights are probably the best answer to more light. JT
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  4. Twin headlight Ernie

    Twin headlight Ernie bar napkin engineering

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    I ditched my complete taillight and replaced it with a LED light from a truck shop. The same type all the trailors use. I bought the L shaped bracket and bolted it to the cross bar for my Jesse bags. The light fits into a grommet and came with a wiring pigtail. It still works after about 50k. Just about every truck stop in the country has replacement bulbs now. Works great if you don't mind getting rid of the factory OEM taillight look. I also added a pair of brake light buddies on some homemade stainless steel brackets at the same time to ward off the cagers. 2HE
    #4
  5. Gringo

    Gringo simple by nature

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    +1 on hyperlites - have had 'em forever on my PD. I've also had run-n-lites in my turn signals forever - yeah, amber lenses on rear-facing lights are technically illegal throughout the known universe but I've never been pulled over for it in 14 yrs. So when I'm running at night I have my red tail light with extra-bright bulb, 2 yellow 1157's or whatever in the turn signals, and a pair of hyperlite LED's mounted wide down below the license plate on a home-grown bracket - 5 lights all glowing all the time, with the biggest one getting brighter and 2 flashing insanely when I brake. In daylight it's very subtle, so it still looks like a PD, not some HD or Old-wing disco show, but at night it gives plenty of visual cues for upcoming motorists to dial in their 3-d perception as they approach. When I've ridden other bikes without all this light aft, I'm alarmed at how much faster drivers come up on me, so it seems to be doing some good.

    A down side to run-n-lites is the replacement reflectors are shiny steel, which is heavier than the BMW gods intended for their rubber signal stalks so the rear turn signals droop, putting the L lense even more into the smoke than normal. Hyperlites have no downside that I can see - they're tiny, light, but BRIGHT. They would fit inside your stock turn signals and they'd be totally stealth daytime, and at night your turn signals would glow red, not amber, in normal running conditions - cheaper and more legal than run-n-lites AND hyperlites combined - but when you're braking (hyperflash in red) and signalling a turn (blinking yellow) simultaneously from the same pod, there may be alot going on for the pea-brained cage pilots behind you to decypher...

    2 notes: LED's are very directional, so aiming is critical on hyperlites - and the replacement LED brake array as well. I had one of Rick's LED taillight arrays and riders following me on a ride at Cromag commented on how hard it was to see me braking in daylight... FWIW. Replaced the LED disc with a high-output 1156/7 bulb, which is omnidirectional; am happier with that.
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  6. opposedcyljunkie

    opposedcyljunkie Heavyweight Boxer

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    that might be the LED light sold by touratech? don't worry, it been backordered for the longest time now :D

    have you tried the the brighter halogen tail lamp bulbs? that's what i use. it could be better but it's an improvement over te stock 1157 bulb.
    #6
  7. Gezerbike

    Gezerbike Hey Rocky...........

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    I have one of the Gizmomill lights on my PD and it's been going fine for over a year now and gathers alot of attention. Also have on on my 1100 RT for about the same period of time. Best comment I have had to date was from a woman who pulled up alongside me one day and commented that my brake light was not working correctly....it kept flashing at her! I'd buy another if I needed one...they really do work.
    #7
  8. datchew

    datchew Don't buy from Brad

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    I'm a married college student and my wife doesn't work. I know about tight.
    but i forked it out for the brake! It's absolutely amazing.

    A must have item here with the old snowbirds and other geezers in florida.

    However, since I didn't mention the Brake LED, I thought I'd give you this link also. It's my next big scheme.

    http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=204755
    #8
  9. bmwblake

    bmwblake upside down parker

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    i already have a stopper srip from rick, but the lights you linked to look interesting. i'll have to go check them out.
    a set of hyperlites would be good as well, but i want more running light visibility as well.


    #9
  10. Lornce

    Lornce Lost In Place

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    I'm a little paranoid about being hit from behind on my bike. I don't trust traffic and I want people to see me. I got smoked from behind while sitting at a stop light in a small car years ago, and I've never quite shaken the feeling of vulnerability.

    Purpose built LED tail and brake lights such as those sourced at trailer supply or truck stops are good pieces of gear. Big, bright and highly visible day and night.

    LED tail lights and brake lights that simply replace 1157 bulbs are a bad idea. Poor light and spotty reliability. I want people to see my brake light. LED replacement bulbs don't cut it. They're dangerous and illegal in some states and provinces. Standard incandescent bulbs produce far more candlepower.

    LED brake light enhancements like "Hyper Lights" are legal and highly visible, both day and night. They produce a much brighter light than the bulb replacement variety LED's and their pulsing frequency increases their visibility. Have them on my GS/PD and I like them.

    The best source of rear end visibility is probably reflective material. My bikes, helmets and jackets all have plenty of reflective material on their back sides. My buddy says I look like a safety dork going down the road at night.

    Good. :D

    Attached Files:

    #10
  11. bmwblake

    bmwblake upside down parker

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    yesterday i was out and happened by an advanced auto parts and picked up a single truck LED like the one mentioned in this thread http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=204755

    i'm still trying to think of how to mount it on the bike. i also dug out some SOLAS reflective tape that was hidden in a cabinet in the garage.
    so i'll end up with the stok 1157, the stopper strip under my license plate, this big truck running/tail light, and some reflective tape.
    if that isn't dorky enough i'll go for the hyper lites as well.
    #11
  12. R100PDave

    R100PDave Wolfman

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    I founs a little gem of a tail light at my local Princess Auto store(Sorry Canada only) 4" diameter 18 led's tail/stop light w/license plate light. Mounting bolts slide right through factory Bmw t/light holes in fender. A couple of mods to the wiring so I could slip the factory t/light back on if I needed and drill a new hole in the side of the housing for the factory wire grommet. Looks like it could have been factory issue. Much brighter. If I can get these pics figured out I'll post them. Total cost was about $40cdn
    #12
  13. R100PDave

    R100PDave Wolfman

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    Sorry I'll have to do 4 seperate pics until I can figure this shit out.
    #1 factory t/light
    #2 Led tail light
    #3 factory brake
    #4 led stop light
    #13
  14. R100PDave

    R100PDave Wolfman

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    #3
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  15. R100PDave

    R100PDave Wolfman

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  16. Cpt. Ron

    Cpt. Ron Advrider #128

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    Did the same for my bike. The stock housing sucks. Plastic reflector, plastic bulb socket, loose connections. I found many times that I didn't have one of the filaments working just from loose connections. Nice and safe.....

    So, I bought the $30-ish truck and/or trailer LED setup from Napa. It took some fabrication work to make a mount, but it's much more reliable and visible. I have the stocker if I should ever want to go back to stock, but why?
    #16
  17. sdpc2

    sdpc2 Just another Rally Rat

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    I had a very similiar experience.

    A HD rider pulled into a gas station behind me and asked what the tail light was that i was running because; as he put it, "man that thing is bright!".

    Works for me... or at least for the last 15K miles.


    #17