Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

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MikeB
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I've mentioned in my EVD threads that I'm working on improving the lighting on my scooter, but the XM3500 is built on the same body, so this discussion should apply pretty equally to both vehicles. Lighting is a very important tool for safety in traffic, and it also helps a bit when riding at night. My priority is 'be seen' more than anything else, but seeing the road better helps too.

So, let's start with a quick inventory, and then see what can be improved.

For headlights, we've got a pair of 35W/35W halogen bulbs. These are a HS1 standard, which is a low-wattage variant of the H4. The same bulb is used for both high/low beams, it's got two filaments in slightly different locations. High beams are not brighter, they are just aimed higher on the road.

Some info on the bulb is here: Bosch India. You can order replacement bulbs online from Candlepower Inc. The standard car/motorcycle bulb for headlights starts at 55W, so we're definitely hurting here. But, on the good side, we've got two headlights, and both are always on, so it could be worse.

For brake/tail lights, we have 3 bulbs, and they are a very standard 5W/25W 1157 bayonet mount bulb. These are 5W for tail lights, but they jump to 25W when you hit the brakes. This is a common bulb for car usage, and we've got 3 of them in a good arrangement, so we're in pretty good shape here.

So how do we make this better?

The biggest collision risk a motorcyclist faces (and presumably a scooter as well) is from a car turning left across your path. The second biggest risk is from someone pulling out of a driveway or side road into your path. One of the best tools to prevent both of these is called a 'Headlight Modulator'. This is a device that alters the output of your headlamps between 100% and 20% at a rate of 240 cycles per minute. It's technically modulating, not flashing, but it's very good at attracting the eye. Other drivers will notice you more rapidly. Federal Law makes such devices legal in all 50 states, as long as they follow specifications. I've ordered modulators from Comagination before, Kisan is also popular. But, they don't make a modulator with a plug for HS1 bulbs.

So, how can we make this work? Here's my current plan: I found a 45W/45W H4 bulb at Candlepower Inc. It should fit into my current housing, and the plug will fit nicely into a headlight modulator. It'll also be something like 30% brighter, which will help at night. The bad news is that they'll draw an extra 10W each, so I need to make sure the bike can handle a 20W increase in power draw. I don't think I'll melt the plastic housing for the lights, but I don't want to blow a fuse while riding, especially if it's dark out.

So, let's look at the tail lights again. They work fine, but there is a massive 75W power draw when you hit the brakes. The DC-DC converter must be able to handle 70W for the headlights and 75W for the brake lights at the same time, so we have 145W total to work with. Let's replace the tail lights with LEDs, and free up some wattage for use up front. LED brakelights also have the advantage that they illuminate faster, which might give the driver behind you a few more milliseconds of reaction time to hit their brakes.

There are lots of choices, but most LED brake/tail replacement bulbs are actually dimmer than the incandescent they replace. We don't want to do that. You also need to get a bulb that illuminates the reflector housing as well as shining the light out the back. I found the 'Eagle Eye Tower' from Autolumination, and it seems to be a good choice. (Top of the page, get the 1157 in Red). Randall at R.Martin says the've got some replacement tail bulbs for our scooters, but I haven't checked those out yet.

While we are working on brake lights, there is one other thing to add. Cars all have a center brake light, it only comes on when braking, so it's never mistaken for a tail light. Since our bikes always have the tail lights on, a car behind us might not recognize the increase in brightness from our brake lights. My solution is Hyperlites. They flash when you hit the brakes, are very bright, and don't draw much power. You can get them as simple brake lights, as brake/tail lights, or even brake/tail/turn lights. They come in modules of 8 or 16 LEDs. I now have a set of two 8 LEDs flashing brake lights, set to go constant after 5 seconds. I mounted them on the bottom of the cargo rack, so they are at the top-center of the tail light cluster.

Between the LED brake/tail lights and the Hyperlights, I figure we draw no more than 20W when braking, rather than 75. That gives us at least 50W of extra power to play with, so lets go back to the front of the bike.

What else can we do up here? Driving Lights.

One of the problems that motorbikes have is a narrow profile. This makes us harder to see, but good lights help fix that. But the real problem is that a driver can't judge how far we are and how fast we are moving. Normally, a driver can detect the change in size of an approaching object, and this change gives a strong clue to distance and speed. A narrow motorcycle, especially the types with only a single headlight, don't provide as strong a signal. We've got two headlights, which is good, but someone might mistake us for a car that is 10x further away, since our lights are dim and close together.

On my gas scooter, I've installed a set of Motolights on the front forks. This provides a great triangular light pattern, as well as extra light on the road. That triangular pattern is pretty much unique to motorbikes, and it gives an excellent cue for distance and speed. Motolights are extremely nice, but they are somewhat expensive, and normally draw 35W each, 70W total. Other options?

The Hyperlight guys now have something called Hyper-whites. A pair of 16-LED modules with bright white output, only 3W each. These aren't going to add much to road illumination, but they are going to make you more visible, and they are going to help form that triangle to define the shape of the bike. I'm probably going this route, but haven't placed an order yet.

I did find another option, and that's an HID (xenon) light. HID provides very efficient illumination per watt of power. But the HID replacement bulb kits are only legal for off-road use in the US, partly because the light comes from a different section of the bulb so the light distribution changes significantly. But what about HID driving lights mounted on the forks? Most HIDs are going to draw 35W, which is above our budget, but then I found these: Trail Tech HID MR11. They consume 13W each, but have the brightness of a 35W halogen bulb. They are going to be around $120 each, and I'll need to figure out how to mount them, and what wires to tap into for power, but they are tempting.

Ok guys, this has gotten pretty long, but I figure you'd benefit from my research. Thoughts? Alternatives? Discussion?

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zarlor
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Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

Good info (I had been watching the RVD thread on this as well). So far the only lighting modification I've done is when I added a Givi 450 hard tail pack I got the lighting kit for it. This puts a light up higher on the bike (as high or highrer than the standard rear window light on a car) that only comes on when the brakes are applied. I need to get something brighter in the dash, the dash lights on the XM-3500Li are garbage, and I'd definitely like to see about replacement headlights, especially if I can get something brighter and maybe bluer or whiter than the current incandescents. I didn't think about the differences in current draw combined that front and rear lights draw, though, so that is a good observation and maybe lowering the wattage from the tail lights is something I need to consider (I rather like those the way they are, but I'm always open to other options.)

So far I don't have much to add here, I'm sorry to say, but I definitely appreciate your posting your observations so far. Please keep us informed with what you do come up with!

Also I thought I saw a thread on an XB700 lighting mod, or some scoot like that, which may provide some further insights. I may try to search later for it and post a link if it seems to be of any use.

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Johnny J
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Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

On the XM-3500´s we got, there are only 18W/18W HS1 bulbs in the headlights....don´t know if the DC/DC can take much more..

MikeB
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Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

Johnny J wrote:

On the XM-3500´s we got, there are only 18W/18W HS1 bulbs in the headlights....don´t know if the DC/DC can take much more..

Johnny, what leads you to believe that the XM3500s have only 18W headlights? All the sources I found that sell HS1 bulbs lists them as 12V, 35/35W. For even more confirmation, my headlight cover has a etched DOT stamp showing 35W/35W HS1, yours should have something similar (if not identical).

I hope you are mistaken on this, since a pair of 18W headlights would seem woefully weak for road use at 40mph.

The main reason for changing out the tail lights with LEDs is to make more wattage available up front, so the DC/DC load is unchanged.

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zarlor
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Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

Here is the link to the XB-700 thread where someone over there is doing some LED lighting updates on their scoot: http://visforvoltage.org/forum/4776-xtreme-700li-led-lighting-project

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Johnny J
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Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

MikeB wrote:
Johnny J wrote:

On the XM-3500´s we got, there are only 18W/18W HS1 bulbs in the headlights....don´t know if the DC/DC can take much more..

Johnny, what leads you to believe that the XM3500s have only 18W headlights? All the sources I found that sell HS1 bulbs lists them as 12V, 35/35W. For even more confirmation, my headlight cover has a etched DOT stamp showing 35W/35W HS1, yours should have something similar (if not identical).

I hope you are mistaken on this, since a pair of 18W headlights would seem woefully weak for road use at 40mph.

The main reason for changing out the tail lights with LEDs is to make more wattage available up front, so the DC/DC load is unchanged.

I took one of the bulbs out and it said 18W/18W on it and they are very weak...

zarlor
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Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

The headlamp cover on my XM-3500Li also has the DOT 12V, 35/35W stamp in raised letters. I didn;t check the bulbs themselves, though.

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eped
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Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

Has anyone looked at something like this?

http://www.piaalights.com/detailsBulbs.php?productName=HS1 Super Plasma GTX Bulb

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eped
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Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

Also, does someone have a picture of the actual bulb from the XM-3500? I did current measurements for a new DC/DC I needed and found 6A with all lights including brake, which is 72W. There are the two headlights, brake light, and then the license plate light, dash lights, and the small mid light up front. If I assume 25W for the brake light, 35W each for the headlights, and then throw on a few watts for the others (lets say 10W), I am at 105W which is more than I measured. If the headlights are only 18W each, then I get 71W which is very close to 72W measured. I don't want to tear down just to look at the bulbs if someone else has already done so. ;)

P.S. Just because the headlight housing/lens assembly say HS1 12V 35W/35W doesn't mean the bulbs are. This rating is the max thermal power rating they are designed for (so using a bulb with higher light output for the same 35W input is fine, but increasing the input power above 35W should be watched since the plastic is not designed for it). However, given the weakness of these headlights I wouldn't be surprised if they are 18W to keep the DC/DC cheap (which failed on me anyways).

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MikeB
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Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

eped wrote:

Has anyone looked at something like this?

http://www.piaalights.com/detailsBulbs.php?productName=HS1 Super Plasma GTX Bulb

Good find, eped, I missed that in my searches. However, that particular line of PIAA bulbs should be avoided like the plague.

First, they claim 60W/60W brightness. But it's actually marketing speak, and doesn't mean what you think it does. Mostly, they position the filament in the bulb more precisely, so the light gets focused better by the reflector assembly. The center of the beam may be brighter, but the edges are dimmer. The net output of the bulb is unchanged. So you might be able to see the center of the lane better, but it's actually darker on the curbs, and much less light hits the other lane where cars are.

Second, they put a blue filter onto the glass. Now, a blue filter doesn't add any light, it just subtracts from the light that isn't blue. With less red & yellow & green hitting the ground, the light looks more blue and less yellow. But there is still less light hitting the ground. This is not the path we want to take.

There are a couple brands of bulbs that actually achieve better brightness, but I haven't found them in the HS1 size yet. Philips Vision Plus and Osram Sylvania Silverstar are both good examples of actually brighter bulbs. What they do is use a thinner filament that burns hotter, so it gives off a little more light but doesn't last as long. I think both achieve about 50% more light using the same wattage. It's a simple trade-off between bulb lifespan and illumination, but it can be worth it.

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MikeB
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Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

zarlor wrote:

Here is the link to the XB-700 thread where someone over there is doing some LED lighting updates on their scoot: http://visforvoltage.org/forum/4776-xtreme-700li-led-lighting-project

zarlor, thanks for the link. I've seen that thread, but think it's on the wrong path. I love LEDs, and think they are the future of lighting, but they just aren't ready for headlights yet. The best large-LED technology right now is probably the CREE XR-E, and I have a couple flashlights with these LEDs in them. Marvelously bright in a tiny flashlight, but they are hitting about 120 lumens right now. Those 13W HID lamps I listed above are putting out 500 lumens, and a car headlight is usually around 1000 lumens. So you really need about a half-dozen high-output LEDs together to get adequate brightness. But a bunch of LEDs are very hard to focus into a tight beam, and a vehicle headlamp needs to put almost all of it's light into a 10 degree cone (or narrower).

It's not hard to find car/motorcycle driving lights that use a standard 35W MR16 halogen bulb, and there are several companies making LED replacement bulbs that fit into a MR16 housing, but those bulbs are all wider angle than I want. The best I've seen is 15 degrees, which might be usable, but 120 degrees is more typical. (MR16 bulbs come in lots of different beam widths & wattages, so we might look for 15-20W narrow spots, but I think the HID choice is better)

So, for 'see the road' lighting, I haven't found any good LED solutions. On the other hand, for 'be seen' lighting, LEDs work just fine, and it's purely a matter of finding the right packaging.

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Johnny J
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Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

It was a pain in the a.. to remove the bulb without taking the hole scooter apart, I even lost one of the screws trying to get it back into place.
Used a small mirror but it didn´t help very much.

I don´t want to do that again, so take my word, at least the one I took out (right side) was 18/18W... :-)

MikeB
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Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

Johnny J, if your bulbs really are 18W, then you'll get a big improvement by just ordering the 35W bulbs that the housing is designed for. I don't know about the limits of your DC/DC converter, however.

Back to the topic of MR16 bulbs and LEDs, here's a possible choice using CREE LEDs, which are the best light/watt right now. And they are claiming a 15 degree beam angle, which should be pretty good for scooter use, maybe a little wider than I'd like but still good. The bad news is that they are an Australian company, so shipping and currency conversions apply. They claim brightness equivalent to a 20W halogen, but each bulb should draw ~3W total.
Led Shop Australia: MR16 15° 3w (Cree XRE XLamp) Bike Light
Another seller for a similar bulb:
LEDwholesalers: 3 x 1 Watt 12 Volt MR16 CREE XLamp XR-E WHITE 240 Lumen

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zarlor
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Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

I think you lost me on this one. a 15 degree beam is a little wide? One of the major complaints I usually see about LEDs is that they are so highly directional. Incandescents, OTOH, just shoot light out all over the place, so a good reflector is used, in part, to tighten that beam down. Many LEDs are often set into arrays, from what I've seen, primarily as a way to widen their angle.

Now if we are talking headlights, the current lights spread to about a 120 degree arc, at least, in from of the XM-3500Li, call it a good 70 or 80 degrees from each lamp with some crossover in the middle where that crossover provides extra brightness on the road in front where you need it the most. So I'm not sure I understand what you mean when you say are looking for something with such a tight beam.

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MikeB
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Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

Ok, bad news, good news, and bad news.

Bad news: Johnny is right, replacing a headlight bulb is a big pain. They are held in place by a pair of clips secured with small screws, but it's almost impossible to get to them without removing the headlight assembly from the bike. So I removed the headlight assembly from the bike. Ick.

Good news: The 45W/45W H4 bulbs I ordered arrived last night, and fit perfectly. Other than getting the headlight assembly out of the bike and back in (did I mention Ick?), it's an easy upgrade to an H4.

Bad news: The extra 10W of illumination is barely visible. The existing bulbs on my bike were the 35W/35W HS1 bulbs I expected to find (and they were good bulbs from Philips), but moving to 45W didn't show a clear improvement. Even with one old bulb and one new bulb installed, it was hard to see any difference between the two. I should have expected this, since human vision is near logarithmic in sensitivity, it would take a doubling in brightness to make a clear difference. I'll still leave the brighter bulbs in for now, since it could make a difference at a distance.

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MikeB
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Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

zarlor wrote:

I think you lost me on this one. a 15 degree beam is a little wide? One of the major complaints I usually see about LEDs is that they are so highly directional. Incandescents, OTOH, just shoot light out all over the place, so a good reflector is used, in part, to tighten that beam down. Many LEDs are often set into arrays, from what I've seen, primarily as a way to widen their angle.

Now if we are talking headlights, the current lights spread to about a 120 degree arc, at least, in from of the XM-3500Li, call it a good 70 or 80 degrees from each lamp with some crossover in the middle where that crossover provides extra brightness on the road in front where you need it the most. So I'm not sure I understand what you mean when you say are looking for something with such a tight beam.

What you really want with a headlight is about 80% of the light in a tight 10 degree cone, and the rest scattered over a 120 degree arc. That illuminates the road directly ahead of you, but still provides enough light for other vehicles to see you and for you to see signs on the side of the road. This is what the existing reflector assembly is giving us. You can confirm this by covering one of your headlights, you'll see that it's much brighter directly ahead of the bike even without the crossover from the two bulbs.

And for auxiliary lights, rather than main headlights, you get more choices. Fog lights traditionally have a wide angle, so they can illuminate the side of the road better. But driving lights have a really narrow beam, so they shine way down the road. So there is more flexibility here, based on your needs.

But in a tail light, you want a different spread. There you probably want about 60% of the light in a 20 degree arc, and the other 40% spread out over a 120 degree arc.

Normal LEDs are semi-directional, they put out light in about a 90-120 degree arc. So if you are trying to illuminate a brake/tail reflector assembly with a LED replacement bulb, you need an array of LEDs to spread the light more like an incandescent, and let the reflector do it's job. But if you are trying to use a LED for a headlight, it's not quite directional enough, so you want a bit of a lens in front to tighten the focus a bit. It's harder to use the 360 degree array of LEDs on a headlight, since the reflector was designed with a point source in mind, so the reflector won't deliver the focus level it was designed for. The tightness of that focus depends on the goal: headlight, fog light, driving light.

One other issue with headlights is putting too much glare into the eyes of an oncoming driver. This is the reason for having cutoffs on the headlight beams. Since we're aiming for somewhat low-power driving lights, this isn't as much as a problem as it is with full brightness car light.

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eped
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Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

Just an FYI - I did some research into reviews on the PIAA Plasma HS1 and found "most" reviews stating it is defintely brighter than the stock bulbs, so I am gambling and placed an order for two. I will keep everyone posted as well as taking some stock versus PIAA light comparisons (I plan to shine the headlights onto a matte white surface and then take identical position, time and aperture exposures for true comparison; my digital Pentax SLR on a tripod can do this).

P.S. The negatives I found is bulb life, so I expect they are running the filament hotter. It is halogen but they seem to have integrated an internal reflector that refocuses some of the emitted light back on the bulb which also increase it emmission temperature. We will see... :?

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Henry42
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Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

Here are the bulbs (and information on replacements) I found in the XM3500Li:

Head Light - HS1 12V18/18W

Dash x 7, License Plate lights - CH 12V3W (x3) & CH 12V1.7W (x4)
Sorry I was not paying attention to which bulb came from which socket.

Parking (head) - X Y 12V3W
LI-194W - .5 watt
194 - 3.78 watt .27 AMP

All turn signals - R10W 12V 282

Brake/tail light - P21/5W 12V21/5W
1157 - 26.9/8.26 watt 2.5/.214 AMP
1034 - 23.04/8.26 watt 1.8/.59 AMP - 402/37.7 lumens

The LI-194W bulbs output more light and I will continue to use them.

I tried the LED replacement for the brake/tail light, but removed it as it seems like it produced about 1/4 to 1/3 the light of the 1157.

I tried the 9003/HB2 55 watt bulbs which output an abundance of light, however the surface of the headlight assembly reached 130 degrees (I measured it after about 15 minutes), so I obtained the 18 watt versions.

DSCF1594.jpg

The fuse going to the DC-DC converter reads 20 AMP (It looks like a 10 AMP). The fuse coming from the DC-DC converter reads 10 AMP.

Recently the DC-DC converter quit working (I was riding in 32 degree weather. I don't know if there is a temperature limit or if the converter was defective.) There were several bulbs that burned out because of it. Because both filaments burned out on the headlights and brake/tail light is seems as if the voltage was well above 12 volts (maybe even 60 volts). It also burned the fuse coming from the DC-DC converter. Anyway I replaced the fuse and bulbs. The DC-DC converter has since quit working totally.

MikeB
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Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

Good info Henry, thanks for collecting it.

I guess this is confirmation then, the XM3500 has crappy headlights. Sorry guys. I'd consider 18W lights suitable for a bicycle, but not for a vehicle legally registered as a motorcycle. I guess that makes a headlight upgrade even more important for you. I need to check again, but I think my DC/DC converter has a 15A fuse on the 12v side, so it looks like the EVD also provides more wattage for the lights, which makes sense.

Since the XM3500 has a much tighter power budget than the EVD, I'd say it's even more important to shift some of that 75W allocated to brake lights to the front. The risk of getting hit from behind really is far smaller than the risk of someone turning across your path or pulling out in front of you.

Let's see if we can figure out a clean mounting for those 13W HID lights from Trail-Tech, since that'll be the best way to get more illumination up front. I've looked at my front end a couple times with this in mind, and don't yet see an easy solution. Anyone have a suggestion?

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eped
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Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

Please note there is only one brake/tail light on the 3500, so there is no 75W budget to work wih.

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pchilds
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Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

http://www.xenonlink.com/ might have a drop in HID replacement for the XM3500.

I converted my Z20b's headlight to a 35 watt HID. The HID has a very high startup current, (14+ amps) that drops down to 3.5 amps, after 30 seconds to 1 minute.

I had to modified the DC-DC converter to output 13.4 volts and add a 7ah battery to handle the peak load. Much cheaper than buying a DC-DC converter that can output 18-20 amps. The DC-DC converter float charges the battery when lights are off. The current drops to 10ma when the battery is fully charged.

Philip

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MikeB
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Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

An update: my headlight modulator arrived just before turkey day, and I got it installed this afternoon. Both high beams are now modulating when the light sensor detects daylight. I didn't do a test drive due to the rain today. I know the modulators attract attention, so I'll be more visible during the day.

I also spotted something interesting in Pep Boys today: a set of aftermarket fog lights that use a 3-watt LED bulb. They were only $49.99, so some experimentation might be in order. They had a round or a rectangular housing, but I can't figure out where I'd mount either one. Both appear to have a wide fog light pattern, and should provide a little extra light on the road.
http://pilotautomotive.com/Product.aspx?ProductID=27241&PCID=1064
http://pilotautomotive.com/Product.aspx?ProductID=27240&PCID=1064

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eped
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Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

UPDATE: I have done the following;
1) Used the Eagle Tower Red 1157 (http://autolumination.com/1156_1157.htm) for the brake/tail light and it is great! Dropped power consumption from 21W to 4W with brakes on and appears just as bright if not slightly brighter.
2) Changed front headlights to the PIAA HS1 (http://www.piaalights.com/detailsBulbs.php?productName=HS1). These put out a very pure white (no blue tint even though bulb is shaded blue) and appears slightly brighter than a 35/35W halogen (they claim brightness equal to 60/60W but I think it is probably closer to 45/45W). I also measured the power and it is 33/33W, but going from the original 18/18W I have gone up 15W each or 30W total.
3) Changed front running light out and replaced with a home-made 3-CREE-T1-1/4-LED with more output light than the 3W halogen only drawing 0.3W, so a 2.7W reduction and more light.
4) Replaced the two front turn signals with Amber LED 1156 bulbs (I am not going to count the power reduction here since these are on only marginally)
5) Completely tore the instrument panel apart, removed all the halogens (that do little to nothing for lighting the gauges as anyone with a 3500 well knows) and built a homemade CREE high intensity lighting assemble up behind the gauges and get excellent lighting. This has dropped my consumption from 9W (there are 3-3W for the gauges) down to 1.5W AND I actually can see my gauges at night!
6) Replaced the indicator bulbs in the dash (3W halogens) with single 30degree white LEDs.
7) Replaced the small brake light bulbs in my GIVI with LEDs and get more brake light intensity and about 4W savings.

Overall my power consumption is about the same or even a couple of watts less and I have much better lighting all around.

I looked at replacing the rear halogen turn signal bulbs with LED and the flasher starts to not work completely (it does not turn them off all the way). Having the LED up front and halogen in back is enough load for the flasher to keep working so I will keep the rear halogens (and these are easy to change - anything up front is a complete nightmare especially the headlights!).

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Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

Some pictures but please excuse the quality as I am trying to convey brightness and not clarity so there is some image blur due to stauration of the camera pixels and I did not spend a lot of time taking these.

P.S. These are taken in my garage where the room lights are on, so you can see the camera underexposed based on the image intensity(as the room appears dim/dark) so the actual intensity you see versus what the camera shows is even brighter than these pictures portray.

brakes.jpg

dash.jpg

headlight.jpg

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Mikie
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Joined: 07/25/2008
Points: 114
Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

Hey Guy that looks fantastic, what a lot of work! But it certainly looks way mo better, congratulations. Hey, have you guys noticed while driving that the side mirrors are too small and/or do not extend outward enough to see adequately, how about replacing those for safety? Best M

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mikie

zarlor
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Joined: 07/03/2008
Points: 146
Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

Mikie wrote:

Hey Guy that looks fantastic, what a lot of work! But it certainly looks way mo better, congratulations. Hey, have you guys noticed while driving that the side mirrors are too small and/or do not extend outward enough to see adequately, how about replacing those for safety? Best M

I was thinking that very thing just the other day. I'm not sure how standardized such things are, though. So I'm not sure where to get replacements or anything, unfortunately.

I've also been looking at replacing the grips. The hard rubber on the stock grips isn't that great and I find that they come loose without too much effort (which gets to be a bit annoying on the throttle, although I suppose I could just use some grip glue to hold it in place better.) At any rate I ordered some 7/8" gel grips, but the left-hand one seems a bit tighter than I expected and the one for the throttle definitely isn't big enough without removing some material on the inside of it. So I ordered some 1" grips and I'll see how those compare when they come in.

Lenny Zimmermann
Metairie, LA

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Lenny Zimmermann
Metairie, LA

MikeB
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Joined: 04/14/2008
Points: 517
Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

I've found another interesting choice, an 'EcoVision' bulb from Philips.
Philips EcoVision H4

It's an H4 headlight bulb that uses 20% less power. Since the H4 is normally 55W, that means that this is really a 45W bulb, but should be 10% brighter than a standard H4. Might be a better choice than the 45W bulbs I mentioned above.

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electromotion
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Joined: 07/07/2008
Points: 29
Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

One unfortunate feature of the XM3500 is that only the center rear light works for brake and tail light. On the EVD all three lights are 1157 based and used for both the brakes and tail lights, which means much brighter over all lighting. On my EVD I used the SMT tower 48 LED lamp from Autolumination in the center and a Eagle Eye 11 LED tower lamp on each side. The eagle eyes are very bright with 3 watt LEDs facing forward. Here is a picture showing the lighting impact.
Gordon
scoooterlights3.jpg

electromotion
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Joined: 07/07/2008
Points: 29
Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

I was upgrading the tail lights in my XM3500 to utilize all three light sockets and ran across a problem with the Xtreme wiring practices. They just wrapped the ground wire around the internal spring and twisted it. You may want to check yours and make a little more permanent.

scooterwireprob.jpg

I bought 3 universal clip in lamp sockets ($3.00ea) at Kragens and modified the existing harness to power three LED lamps. I also soldered the ground wires to the outside of the socket to make more permanent. Then I pryed the crude plastic plugs that were glued in to the outer lamp sockets in the tail light assembly and clipped the lights in.
harnessmods2.jpg

Final results
Gordon
taillightslitX.jpg

zarlor
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Joined: 07/03/2008
Points: 146
Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

Nice! Do you have any more details on the parts used? Maybe some part numbers and models or links or such? I may have to see about following suit and incorporating a bunch of these lighting mods.

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Lenny Zimmermann
Metairie, LA

electromotion
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Joined: 07/07/2008
Points: 29
Re: Better Lighting on EVD & XM3500

Lenny,

The universal sockets I used are #85802 2 contact sockets for 1157 lamps. You can do a search for these, they show up on Ebay. Kragen has these as floor stock for 2.99 ea. The socket holes in the tail lense are 1", the universal sockets will clip into holes from 7/8" to 1 1/8". All of the LED lights were from autolumination as MikeB mentioned above.

Gordon

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