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I have a 06 K1200GT and am curious about how long the lower beam headlight bulb should last. I purchased the bike in December of 2006 and am now having to replace the lower headlight bulb for the second time. I currently have 23,870 miles on the bike. Just curious as to how frequent are you having to change out the bulbs and is that normal?
 

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I have 29,000 or so miles and have replaced mine at least 6 or 7 times. Just did again. I always carry a spare with me. I've tried a couple of different kinds but now stick with the Sylvainia Silver Stars. They seem to last just a bit longer and the color is better seen IMO. Personally I think they should last longer too, but I think that maybe the voltage runs a little hot on these things.
 

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Robert_W said:
I have 29,000 or so miles and have replaced mine at least 6 or 7 times. Just did again. I always carry a spare with me. I've tried a couple of different kinds but now stick with the Sylvainia Silver Stars. They seem to last just a bit longer and the color is better seen IMO. Personally I think they should last longer too, but I think that maybe the voltage runs a little hot on these things.
Sylvania bulbs are terrible. My OEM Kia bulbs lasted a few years. I've tried every type of Sylvania bulb, from the cheap to the premium, and they all last about 4 months. I've been through 18 bulbs in my 2004 Kia! I initially blamed my Kia for "hot voltage" except I went back to OEM bulbs and they are outlasting the Sylvanias. For how much I spent in Sylvania bulbs I could have converted to HID.

Okay, the Kia isn't a GT, but now I see I'm not the only one that burns through those things fast.
 

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Yeah but the reason I stick with them is because I haven't found any other brighter white colored bulbs that lasted any longer. Out of any I've tried they are the most affordable. About 15 bucks a pop. If any one has any great suggestions for a bright white H7 bulb that lasts longer than the Silver Stars and is reasonably affordable then I'm all eyes. The regular halogens and their yellow color just don't cut it as well.

Besides, I'm getting real good at changing the damn things now! :teeth And at 15 bucks a pop I seem to be averaging roughly 4500 miles to a bulb. So somewhere around 300 bucks for bulbs for 100,000 miles........what else isn't stupidly expensive with these bikes?! :confused: .....it's a conspiracy I tell you! :D
 

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Yeah but then there's that whole ripping apart the bike thing and the patience to do it. Sticking in an H7 is a lot easier. Unless of course you got an extra one lying around to sell and want to do a tech afternoon this week? I'll buy dinner. I'd love to meet some of you guys some time. Meese and I blew right by each other a few days ago and never knew it.

BTW, I'll be riding through your back yard in the next couple of days. I'm over in Alpine headed toward Austin. Right now holed up cause the winds over this way are freaking stupid! 35-50 sustained with gust to almost 65. .......SSstuuupppiiiddd riding right now. You know, at a 30 degree angle fighting for your life kinda riding.....Argh.
 

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Replacing that many bulbs isn't normal. The only way to get "whiter" halogen bulbs is to run them hotter (which means they don't last as long) or to coat them with a blue coloring agent (which actually reduces useable light output).

Go with the HID upgrade and be done with it. And if you can get Grif to do the install, all the better. Trust me, the HID light output is far superior to any halogen bulb you can put in. Any bike I own will have an HID put into it immediately, if it isn't a factory option.

And I'm very familiar with those winds, having just ridden through them myself. It sucks, but if you put the suspension on full hard and ride with a loose grip on the bars, the bike will float a little but remain stable and controllable.

Sorry we didn't get a chance to hook up Robert, but I had to be back in L.A. before traffic hit at 4 p.m. But the guest room is available if you end up down this way again. :)
 

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Ken, yup on the suspension and loose grip. It's when those insane gusts come out of now where that the serious pucker factor kicks in.

The upgrade from these folks seems to be the one you guys have used...yes?

http://www.cqlight.ca/product_info.php?products_id=73

But they don't seem to give an install description. Is it just plugged into the existing H7 bulb connector? And if so how does one go about running a wire through the plastic behind the bulb. Do I need to drill a hole to run the wire through? Or can the connection from the bulb be re routed easily leaving the plastic cover in place without having to drill anything.

Now I have to go look.....

Oh...and....is there room under the right side for everything? I've got the Stebel on the left.
 

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Robert,
There is plenty of room inside the nose cowl. To the left and right of the headlight. I have 3 of the large ballasts installed in there. One for the lowbeam and 2 more for some some hella micro DE's I converted to HID's. You do have to drill a hole in the headlight cover and install a rubber grommet that comes with the hid kit. The hid plugs right into the stock wiring and is very easy. You'll be kicking yourself in the backside for not doing it sooner. I have over 35k on my hid so far with no problems.
 

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Robert_W said:
Ken, yup on the suspension and loose grip. It's when those insane gusts come out of now where that the serious pucker factor kicks in.

The upgrade from these folks seems to be the one you guys have used...yes?

http://www.cqlight.ca/product_info.php?products_id=73

But they don't seem to give an install description. Is it just plugged into the existing H7 bulb connector? And if so how does one go about running a wire through the plastic behind the bulb. Do I need to drill a hole to run the wire through? Or can the connection from the bulb be re routed easily leaving the plastic cover in place without having to drill anything.

Now I have to go look.....

Oh...and....is there room under the right side for everything? I've got the Stebel on the left.
I posted step by step instructions, with pictures, in the HoW. Nada needs to go in the sides.

Know when you'll be in the area? Need a place to crash for the night?

Now, if you get one overnighted to my house, I'll be glad slap it in for you. You don't realize what you've been missing, as far as light output, until you have an HID.
 

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Thanks for the replies gentlemen. Greatly appreciated.

Grifs...sent you a PM.
 

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The HoW is just awesome.

Changed to a HID straight forward and easy with Grif's direction.

Helped me find the OEM horn, for the wires changing to air horns, should have taken pictures, everything fits on the left side with a little juggling and tiewraps. Yes, the Stebel would have been easier but sounding like a Semi get everyone back in the lane.


Do change to the HID, well worth it and very easy.

Thanks Grif.
 

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I'm interested in doing this too, what is the latest on where to buy the stuff? Would love to go factory, but sounds pretty pretty darn pricey. Is the factory headlight (such as lense and reflector) really different on a Xenon vs a halogen headlight?
If there is a difference, is it really noticeable having everything factory? In other words has anyone here gone from a GT with non-factory xenon to a bike with factory xenon,or otherwise been able to compare the two?

Gilly
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Thanks for the thoughts, so I think that I will go with the HID upgrade, sounds like the best for overall longevity.
Are there any repercussions using the HID system with the Canbus, because the Canbus seems to override the slightest glitch? For example I had my horn cut out when I was off/on it for a while as I passed the Bunny Ranch in Nevada.
 

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k1200gt06tmw said:
Thanks for the thoughts, so I think that I will go with the HID upgrade, sounds like the best for overall longevity.
Are there any repercussions using the HID system with the Canbus, because the Canbus seems to override the slightest glitch? For example I had my horn cut out when I was off/on it for a while as I passed the Bunny Ranch in Nevada.
Not even a fault thrown with mine, much less a cut out.
 

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The first hid I bought for my GT was a really expensive unit from europe. That hid would trip the canbus everytime and would not work. I went back and forth with the company and tried about four different things including a custom wiring harness. I could never get it to work. I ended up buying one of the cheap $75 kits readily available online and it works 90% of the time. During that 10% I just restart the bike and the light comes on and the fault goes away.Once it is on it never faults. Most people do not have this problem, I must have a very sensitive canbus on my bike. I even had the dealership reprogram my bike for having the hid option and it still faults about 10% of the time. Minor incovienance for such a huge benefit.
 
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