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Display Mesage #49980

The Great LED Experiment, Part 1
Written by CalvinFold on 9/24/2004 at 10:20 pm

--- In, "onetrikpc" <viana1@b...> wrote:
> --- In, Kevin Quosig <kevin@q...> wrote:
> > Well, after watching other PCers run around in the rain, bright
> > sunlight, and places in between, I've decided to start playing with
> > brighter LED solutions for tail and brake bulbs. There has *got*
> to be a
> > way to make the bikes more visible in over bright, low-light,
> > low-contrast conditions (outright darkness is less of an issue).
> >>>>>>>>>>>SNIP<<<<<<<<<<
> > if I can safely part the lense from the base, and it's not too
> hard.
> 1TrikPC reply:
> I could not separate the lens from the base, so I cut along the top
> and bottom and ONE vertical cut of each housing section. With the 3
> cuts, you can "hinge" each section and secure the arrays in each
> housing.

Actually, a hair dryer, thin utility knife, and patient pulling got the signal
assembly apart (I had a broken one I kept to practice with). The sealant
softens with a hairdryer set to high and a pass with the knife will slit and
the sealant. Do this about 4 times around the perimeter and it eventually starts
to give-way. Takes alot of patience, but once it starts to give, and you keep it
warm with the hairdryer, it comes right off.

What I discovered this morning is that once it all cools off, it sticks again!
So in
theory, re-sealing the lenses is a matter of heating-up the sealant, moving it
around and squishing the whole works back together (and adding sealant
where needed, which I have).

> >I also have a surprise for you folks mentioning that using LEDs
> will "not
> > take advantage of the reflector." Got news for you, it's grey
> painted
> > plastic in there (at least on the '96). I've seen more
> relfectivity in
> > chrome-look spraypaint, very disappointing. No wonder the lights
> are so
> > reflector, a simple bulb, and a wickedly carved plastic
> lense.
> 1TrikPC reply:
> I went as far as to paint the inside of each housing BLACK so the
> arrays have brighter appearance. With the "reflective" paint inside
> the light bar, excessive sunlight or headlights shining into the
> brakelight bar seem to over drive the LED arrays. Now that it is
> blacked out, the LED arrays really standout. It works great.

I hadn't considered that...interesting. I may be able to try it both ways. I
discovered that some 1989s have a different light bar that *did* have an
aluminized interior, and I may be getting one from a member. A look at the
fiche would seem to back that up, since there is a 1989 number and an "all
years" number.

So what I may do is try that one first and while that's on the bike, paint my
existing array interior black and then swap them.

I'll keep that tip in mind...thanks!

Whose LEDs did you use when you built yours? I ask because Custom
Dynamics uses a different grade of LED than any supplier I have found, so
wash-out might be less of an issue with their "ultra-LEDs." I considered the
home-brew route, but I just don't have the time or patience, and near as I
could tell from claims and such, the ultra-LEDs like CD uses are impossible to
find unless you're in the automotive profession...I was unable to tell if the
LEDs I was buying were top-notch or crap.

Check out the WebBikeWorld reviews on the Custom Dynamics LEDs:


Since I could cram THREE of the CD arrays in the Uni-Go taillight, I know I
can get at least SIX across the back of the PC800. Will cram more if it's
possible, won't know until I get it apart. I will get one-each in the signal
enclosures, but can also use the Electrical Connection marker lights to boost
lighting beyind stock relatively easy.

I also considered the Heavy Cycles route, but they do "custom fit" work by
sending them the core to modify. I figured this would be even more expensive
than the Custom Dynamics route and would mean doing without my bike,
which I can't do. I figured the 1.85" round arrays CD sells are handy enough to
let me do a DIY job with it in stages over a couple of weekends (or one long


I think if someone has more money than time, or wants the best money can
buy, that these custom arrays are ideal since the guy absolutely fills the
enclosures so they light nice and evenly. Nice work.

> >>>>>>>>>>SNIP<<<<<<<<<<<
> > Now this won't be a *cheap* project...Uni-go alone is quite a
> chunk of
> > change, but if it will improve the non-existant light visibility
> in poor
> > conditions, it'll be worth it.
> >
> > I'll let you know how the Uni-Go install goes, will take photos
> before
> > and after.
> 1TrikPC reply:
> A small price for safety...... :o)

That was my thought....but just for the Uni-Go brake light and signal lamps
was $250 in parts and shipping. Rear light bar on the bike about twice that. *

But yeah, if the Uni-Go results are as staggeringly better as I suspect they
I'll convert all the rear PC800 bulbs. The front signals in the mirrors I have
decided on...their visibility is important, but a trickier housing and may get *
worse* with the LED treatment due to the slanted angle.

> Here is a link to see the LED arrays and how they look when lit
> (pardon the typos):

Are the rear signals stock or LEDs as well?

Hey, BTW, how are the dual headlights working out?

San Leandro, CA
1996 Honda Pacific Coast 800 ("Red Dwarf")
49,500+ miles || HRCA #HM729375
2002 Uni-Go Trailer ("Starbug 1") || Trailer #499
Friday, September 24, 2004 || 3:13 PM PST

Message Thread for message #49980

Revill Dunn []
12/15/2000, 11:28 am
PC800: Rattles n squeaks
The weather has finally turned cold, at least what us wimpy Texans think is cold. Whirby has started buzzing, rattling and squeaking like a box of tupperware for the first five minutes until the plastic warms up. I've experimente
9/24/2004, 01:05 am
The Great LED Experiment, Part 1
Well, after watching other PCers run around in the rain, bright sunlight, and places in between, I've decided to start playing with brighter LED solutions for tail and brake bulbs. There has *got* to be a way to make the bikes more visible in