Brighter lights - 6v LED and halogen headlamp bulbs

General electrical problems
User avatar
john.nash
Holder of a Golden Anorak
Holder of a Golden Anorak
Posts: 1086
Joined: Mon Feb 14, 2011 4:46 pm
Location: Lea, Herefordshire. Mud capital of the world
Contact:

Brighter lights - 6v LED and halogen headlamp bulbs

Postby john.nash » Sat May 28, 2011 10:46 am

the reason many people convert to 12v is for brighter lights.
There is no denying, that for the serious night/winter rider, this is almost an essential. For most of us however, that pick and choose where we ride our old bikes (as we probably have more than one available) then "A gentleman does not motor around after dark" unless he has to.

The answer I have found lies with new fangled modern technology. Namely 6v LED bulbs and 6v Quartz halogen headlamp bulbs (unfortunately you cannot get LED headlamp bulbs yet)

Nowadays, you don't need to buy an expensive light board and get busy with the soldering iron and have to modify your original light. LED bulbs have exactly the same fitting as the traditonal incandescent bulbs and fit straight in. The only difference is that LED's usually care what schema (negative or positive earth) your bike is on (unless you buy one of the rarer ones, that works both ways), so you need to buy the right bulb for your bike.

Image

The advantages with LED bulbs are:
  1. Mainly that they draw minimal amps, which leaves you with opportunity to fit a larger wattage headlamp bulb and still have amps in hand !.
  2. As you can fit an LED pilot light, then for countries where you need to run with these on ALL the time, then it puts virtually no strain on your charging system.
  3. They are pretty robust.
  4. Not really an advantage but they are supposed to light up "quicker" (in nano seconds) .....

Buy the ones with the most LED's that you can find (19, 24 or even 30 little LED's on the one bulb). More LED's give brighter light.
Make sure if you are using one for a numberplate light, as well, that it has the side mounted LED's to prove better illumination in that direction.
Allegedly, a red bulb works better behind red glass etc.

With regards to Quartz Halogen bulbs, then I am aware of at least one UK vendor that supplies 6v Halogen in standard BPF, which will be a straight fit.
I use a 35w/35w one and it's plenty more bright than standard and pretty much up to the job for most night time jaunts.
Image

I won't give EBAY.co.uk links, as they will change and this topic won't.
However, a search on 6v LED or 6v quartz halogen (within vehicle accessories) will usually turn up some.

I got my last bunch of LED's (incuding pilot bulb) from the USA:
http://www.superbrightleds.com
They also do a 6v bulb that doesn't care about polarity !!

I got my my last handful of 6v quartz halogen (35/35w) from Paul Goff, at an autojumble:
http://www.norbsa02.freeuk.com/goffybulbs.htm


Please feel free to pm or email me for more information
John "Josh" Nash
webmaster@arielownersmcc.co.uk
AOMCC No.4119
2009 royal Enfield,1978 t140 bonneville, '67 CJ750, 196-ish Ural M62 outfit, 1960 k750, ''51 kH500, ''49 soon to be Ariel bobber, 47 VH twinport, '44 Ariel WNG, '43 Ariel WNG, ' and piles of rusty scrap ....

User avatar
brenton.roy
Holder of a Golden Anorak
Holder of a Golden Anorak
Posts: 2016
Joined: Sun Feb 27, 2011 1:13 pm
Location: Adelaide, South Australia
Contact:

Postby brenton.roy » Sat May 28, 2011 2:35 pm

Thanks John
'51,'56 Squares, '48 VH, '27 Model C, R67/2, Mk IV Le Mans, '06 Super Duke and Ariel projects.

User avatar
brian.irwin
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Aug 15, 2011 7:36 pm
Contact:

Re: Brighter lights - 6v LED and halogen headlamp bulbs

Postby brian.irwin » Thu Aug 18, 2011 7:15 pm

Beware, fitting the 6v halogen headlight lamps to a two stroke ! the focal length is not the same and you end up with just a halo of light on the road and not a proper beam. At least that is what happened with mine. If anyone knows of a cure I would be pleased to hear of it.

Brian Irwin :(

User avatar
simon.holyfield
Holder of a Golden Anorak
Holder of a Golden Anorak
Posts: 3510
Joined: Mon Oct 17, 2011 11:16 pm
Location: Norfolk
Contact:

Postby simon.holyfield » Sun Nov 20, 2011 9:36 pm

I have that 'halo of light' problem with a 6V halogen on my Bantam. Anyone understand the problem?
cheers

Simes

'51 Square Four,
'58 Huntmaster,
'42 W/NG,
'78 CX500
http://ariel-square-four.blogspot.com

User avatar
andrew.chapman
Holder of a Nylon Anorak
Holder of a Nylon Anorak
Posts: 128
Joined: Sat May 07, 2011 6:19 pm
Contact:

Re: Brighter lights - 6v LED and halogen headlamp bulbs

Postby andrew.chapman » Mon Dec 19, 2011 11:43 am

It is because the source of the light (the filament) is not quite at the focus of the reflector. It probably results from a slight difference in the position of the filament relative to where the bulb sits in the holder. You could experiment by moving the bulb in and out of the reflector to try to find the best position. You might need to adapt the bulb mounting to hold the bulb in the right place. Or replace the reflector with a more modrn one, if you can find one to fit.

I did that with my Sunbeam. I replaced the whole reflector and lens unit with a modern one. It gives amuch better beam than the original one did with a modern bulb in it. The original reflector had gone a bit yellow anyway.

On the VH, I have retained 6v electrics but I use QH bulb. It gives a pretty decent light and there is no problem with the beam focus. It clearly depends on the shape of the reflector. I also use an LED rear light fitting but I use a 10W QH bulb for the pilot, which I use as a running light all of the time. I find that it gives a much more visible light in daylight conditions than the LED pilot bulbs. I had to do a mod on the pilot bulb holder because the standard ones can't cope with the heat from the 10W bulb. The plastic insulator insert tends to melt after a while. I made a new one from Tufnel, which copes pretty well.
AndyC
http://www.foxwoodmotorcyclerandr.co.uk
BMW K1300GT 2009, BMW K1200RS 2002, Ariel VH 1954, Sunbeam S8 1952

User avatar
simon.holyfield
Holder of a Golden Anorak
Holder of a Golden Anorak
Posts: 3510
Joined: Mon Oct 17, 2011 11:16 pm
Location: Norfolk
Contact:

Postby simon.holyfield » Tue Dec 20, 2011 9:29 pm

Thanks for the clue Andy, that explains lot.

When I put the Bantam together, I bought a pattern headlamp as the reflector was corroded. I used a 6V QH bulb from Paul Goff. The thing was, the glass didn't fit.

I split the glass from the reflector, and used the old glass.

So I guess, given that mixture, I shouldn't be surprised I have a beam with a hole!
cheers

Simes

'51 Square Four,
'58 Huntmaster,
'42 W/NG,
'78 CX500
http://ariel-square-four.blogspot.com

User avatar
simon.holyfield
Holder of a Golden Anorak
Holder of a Golden Anorak
Posts: 3510
Joined: Mon Oct 17, 2011 11:16 pm
Location: Norfolk
Contact:

Postby simon.holyfield » Wed Dec 21, 2011 7:45 pm

As an update to that last post, if I compare a QH bulb in a BPF base with a standard BPF bulb, the filaments are about 1/4" nearer the cap...
cheers

Simes

'51 Square Four,
'58 Huntmaster,
'42 W/NG,
'78 CX500
http://ariel-square-four.blogspot.com

julian.murphy
Posts: 21
Joined: Sat May 26, 2012 10:54 pm
Location: East Anglia
Contact:

Postby julian.murphy » Tue May 29, 2012 10:56 pm

Well a few years ago I went the whole hog, and converted to 12v with electronic regulator.

I also changed the complete headlight glass/reflector for a Hella unit. This takes H4 bulbs. At 30mph with lights on, I have adjusted the regulator to give a 'null' charge. No charge, but also no -discharge. Charge kicks in at 35 +. I drive mainly rural roads so no charge at 30 is not a problem.

tonyh
Holder of a Nylon Anorak
Holder of a Nylon Anorak
Posts: 129
Joined: Wed Feb 06, 2013 5:16 pm
Contact:

Postby tonyh » Thu Mar 14, 2013 10:09 am

I have them in my tail lights. Nice and bright and take little drain on the system. However be carefull they are neg or pos earth I can't remember but only work one way.

User avatar
fpassmore
Holder of a Nylon Anorak
Holder of a Nylon Anorak
Posts: 264
Joined: Mon Aug 27, 2012 2:05 am
Location: Kamloops, BC, Canada
Contact:

Postby fpassmore » Sat Mar 16, 2013 2:16 pm

They are available in both Neg and Pos earth but you must find the right supplier and specify when ordering. I got my last Pos earth LED's from Paul Goff but there are other suppliers. Those and QH headlights make all the difference in night-time driving.
'51 SQ4, '37 VH500 Red Hunter, '56 SQ4 (basket case), '49 Sq4 (basket case), '48 A7 BSA Twin, too many other BSA's, Norton's, Triumph's, Ducati's and Japanese to list. Just crazed is all my problem is.


Return to “Electrics”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest