Headlight Installation

May 26, 2018 lights

 

I knew I wanted to simplify the front end in regards to lighting, so I started to look for options. I quickly settled on a stand alone round headlight style with brackets mounted to the upper fork stanchions. This would allow me to set the proper height to hopefully match the lines of the tank and bike overall. Now I just had to find one within my budget that would be the correct size and proportion. The first option I took was a cheap Chinese unit with built in HALO style LED’s lights that could be wired as DRL’s and also used for indicators. You get what you pay for and sometimes parts from China are mysterious to say the least. The unit showed up broken and with one side of the LED’s in orange, the other in blue. On top of that, the housing and lens were very cheap plastic. Obviously, this was not going to work at all. Luckily the company refunded my money due to the issues… but I was back to square one.

 

Not what was promised… but not that unexpected…

 

Back to my search, this time understanding I was going to have to spend a bit more to get the quality I really wanted for this project. I came across a headlight that was twice the price but a substantial upgrade in quality. Aluminum housing, sturdy mounting brackets, true LED lighting with two rows of DRL LED’s as well.

 

Now that will do just fine…

 

I decided I would get separate turn signals and mount them to the sides of the headlight bracket. The style was what I wanted and overall would perform better than a one piece unit.

 

Aluminum housing and a perfect fit…

 

It was time to test fit the light onto the fork. The upper stanchions on the ZZR are 43mm and the brackets barely fit. Took some manipulation to open up the clamps while keeping the bolt holes as parallel as possible, but once in place, it looked like it was made for the bike.

 

High and low LED rows as well as the smaller DRL’s top and bottom….

 

Next step was to figure out how to integrate the wiring for these new lights into the existing harness. The ZZR originally has two headlights, turn signals and a pair of running lights all in the front cowl. The relays for both headlights are between the factory plug and the lights themselves.

 

Factory front light harness…

 

I just needed to simplify the wiring to a single headlight and tie the running light lead into the DRL’s. My plan was to wire a switch for the low beam LED’s to ride at night and run the DRL LED’s whenever the key was switched on (basically all the time). The high beam switch at left bar control would still function as factory.

 

Beginning of the simplification…

 

I cut and soldered factory connections to the new headlight plug. I will connect the turn signals once the harness is installed on the bike.

 

New finished headlight harness…

 

From here, the headlight and turn signals will be mounted. I will run a switch to operate the low beam and tap that into the current headlight lead coming from the junction box headlight circuit relay. This will allow the headlight to work as before (engine running) with the additional ability to turn it completely on or off while riding if I choose to do so. Because I am retaining the factory wiring, the switches for the high beam and turn signal indicators will still operate and I will tie those into the new LED indicators on the dash.

 

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