Whats your headlight pattern like? - K-Bikes.com - Excellence in Motion
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old Nov 22nd, 2018, 5:13 am Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Invercargill, Southland, New Zealand
Posts: 6
Whats your headlight pattern like?

I've done the usual HID bulb swap on the 02 K12RS here - 35w in both high & low beams, will probably go to 55w later on - but the low beam pattern seems to be more of a 'smudged X' than a classic style cutoff - flat, or like a laid-down lightnig bolt.

I'm wondering if this is something to do with my bulbs or my headlight itself, especially since it looks like the alignment (moving the reflector) sort of screws around with the pattern (since that looks as if it comes from the fixed front lens). Any ideas out there? - I'd try changing the alignment a bit but I'm afraid I'd lose the reflector off the end of the adjusting screw somehow - and you can't dismantle the headlights like on the classic Ks.


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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old Nov 29th, 2018, 3:09 am
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Join Date: Jul 2016
Location: Seattle, WA, USA
Posts: 135
I'm not a "Brick K-bike" owner but have worked on a few. By "HID bulb swap", do you mean you installed an entire HID Projector like from Morimoto or just a bulb and ballast kit that still relies on the stock reflector surface to shin the light out on the road?

Unless you do the whole Projector install, you are not getting nearly the benefits of HID at all. They just can't get an HID bulb to function correctly in all the various myriad styles of headlights. The focal physics are all wrong and it's why they have laws about this. These cheapy half assed kits are what has given HID such a bad rep. Besides giving the rider bad lighting, they are diffusing the beam and blinding on-coming traffic even on low beams.

I did a complete custom install with a pair of Morimoto H-1 Projectors in my '08 K 12 S and the illumination is absolutely outstanding and on-coming traffic has no idea they are looking at an HID unless I forget to shut down the High Beams.

It is a lot of work and a bit of money but worth it to do it right. As you mentioned, the housing doesn't just come apart with the turn of a couple screws. You have to heat the housing in the oven to soften the rubber and very carefully pry the lens off. Then you bore the back of the housing with a hole saw, set the whole thing up while fighting the limited space in the housing and then find and build mounting locations for the Ballast, Starter, Resister, and all the wiring.

I had no problems with beam focus thru the stock lens of my housing. The shops that do these conversions for a living have no problems with the lenses on all the various makes of vehicles that they install them in so I'd say that is a non issue. I did all my own work but did have good advice from the shop that sold me the lights. They also said that 55w Ballasts are usually not recommended especially for Motorcycles and it's going to cut your bulb life in half. Personally, I also recommend avoiding all the silly colors and just stay with white. It's those colors that signal traffic that you are using HIDs and even if they are not being blinded by your lights, they have become conditioned to think they are.

I saw a post from some punk that bragged about running the purpliest blubs he could find and racing around with the brights on, blinding as many motorists as he could find. Yeah, that's just what the fuck we need; Ride around on this naked skeleton of a vehicle and piss off everyone driving 3000 lb. armored tanks.

Write me back if I can be of any more help.
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old Nov 29th, 2018, 6:00 am Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Invercargill, Southland, New Zealand
Posts: 6
Just the standard bulb swap keeping the original headlight; it's a classic RS, have always thought going to a projector insert wouldn't be possible without another whole shell of some sort (eg with a dustproof rear and non-refracting front lens/cover)... I've got 2 headlight assys and comparing the one with the H7 & H3 xenon lamps side-by-side to the one with std Philips halogens looks like about the same beam patterns - main question was wondering if anyone had found any particular relationship of alignment of the light that gave a better pattern, especially as the alignment moves the mirror & bulbs relative to the refraction elements (bars, ribs etc) cast into the back of the glass lens so having it too far 'off design' (off center, up down, whatever) could stuff up the pattern.

I'll have a look at the specifics of a projector insert; might work with my level of hacking skill. I know the HIDs in the stock light can give glare, but given using a correct type HID into the same size application (eg h7 for h7, h3 for h3) isn't anywhere near as bad as those H4 hi-low things in a std H4 enclosure, and I always make sure to do a thorough walk-around in the dark & try different viewing heights after doing any headlight work to check for having created glare; no point in having the better bulbs if you lose your night vision sensitivity from people flashing you all the time to complain about your light! oh, and I've got 4200kelvin ones - I want bright white for clarity, not a disco show :P

Thanks for the input
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old Dec 4th, 2018, 6:58 pm
Join Date: Jul 2017
Posts: 27
I did the low beam conversion. Bought a 35w, 4300k bulb, but it’s probably closer to 6000k. While I would normally NOT consider this in a standard housing without a projector, the design of the high beam shrouds the beam so the it doesn’t glare oncoming traffic. It does produce a bit if a W pattern, but I’m also always running my aux lights which fill in around the W so I don’t notice. And again, while I normally hate the blue tint of anything over 5000k, in this case I feel it makes me more visible to traffic, and anything that makes me more visible on the bike is a win. My aux lights are the rigid ignite series (very small, quite inexpensive, and very bright!) mounted under the cowl. The combination of the 2 makes the high beam pretty irrelevant without blinding traffic (unless I want to see tree tops for some reason).
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