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LED bulbs in turn signals - no resistor needed!

Discussion in 'BNS12 Chat & Tech' started by jdub, May 15, 2019.

  1. jdub

    jdub Tuned and Synch'ed

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    I just installed LED bulbs in the rear turn signals of my '15 Norge because I intend to convert them into running lights + turn signals. The stock bulbs may not last very long being used as running lights, and the heat may be an issue as well. I bought a load equalizer / resistor assuming it would be needed to correct a fast blink or no blink situation. However, I was pleasantly surprised to see the turn signals blinked normally. I'm not sure if things would change if the front signals were also changed to LED, but I don't plan on changing the fronts just yet.

    The resistors won't go to waste though. I replaced the parking light bulbs in the headlight cluster with LED bulbs and they won't turn on. The bulb and wiring appear to be good because the LED bulbs will flash momentarily when the ignition is switched off. Hopefully, the resistor I bought for the turn signals will work for the parking lights.

    On a related note, the LED turn signal bulbs I got from superbrightleds were way longer than the stock bulbs. Their search-by-vehicle bulb finder includes the Norge but they must not do any actual fitting before listing a bulb as being compatible. I had to recess the reflector into the turn signal housing to get the LED bulb to fit under the lens.
     
  2. Bert Remington

    Bert Remington Tuned and Synch'ed GT Famiglia

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    For my 2012 Norge, I put SBL's BAU15S-A18-T amber bulbs (turn only, did not add running circuit) in the front turn signals with no fit or function problems. They were too long for the rear turn signals. I'll try your reflector recess modification.

    The MG bulbs do not have an exact LED match because they are (1) very short; and (2) have offset locating pins. You can get LEDs matching one or the other but not both.

    My OPT7 Bolt 25W 5,000K HID low beams are working well although a separate power circuit via relay is required as are my SNGL 3,000K LED high beams (visibility only, not for illumination which is low beams).

    I'm adding a Sirius NS-2332 tail/brake light with flasher function below the license plate.
     
  3. jdub

    jdub Tuned and Synch'ed

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    Bert: I ordered the same BAU15S-A18-T as you. I am not totally happy with how the recessed reflectors turned out because there is stress being placed on the LED from the lens squashing it, and there is still a bit of a gap between the lens and housing. I would do it
    only if you REALLY wanted LEDs in the stock turn signal housing. It might be better to just get an aftermarket turn signal but I am not sure if one is available that matches up to the bike's mounting bolt.

    I might order another pair of the BAU15S-A18-T for the fronts. They are much brighter than the stock bulbs.

    Let me know how the Sirius works for you. I have a Denali B6 mounted below the license plate. I tried to add a flasher but was unsuccessful due to the standby voltage in the brake line that prevented the flasher from resetting itself. It would flash the B6 if I held the brake upon startup, but no more flashing after that. The standby voltage made the flasher think the brake was always applied.
     
  4. Bert Remington

    Bert Remington Tuned and Synch'ed GT Famiglia

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    The SBL 67-A12-G-2PK amber bulbs should fit if you are willing to remove one of the locating pins. SBL is offering me a discount so I may give them a try since my favorite alternative is the K&S 25-9900D kandstech.com/pimages/25-9900D.html but haven't been able to push that $100 Buy button yet. K&S is local but they didn't seem interested in visitors. If the SBL 67s don't work out maybe I'll show up uninvited.

    I tried to find alternative turn signals that would accept an LED bulb and match the MG two-part mount (feedthrough and lock bolt). Honda, Kawasaki and Suzuki had the best possibilities but I think it's a mug's game unless you can do a side-by-side comparison and that ain't gonna happen.

    The Sirius arrives Friday. The MG tail/brake connector is a 3-pin "Molex" available from Amazon, et al so I will patch in a jumper that will allow me to experiment with different combinations of diodes, resistors, and relays as needed without tapping into the MG wiring. Because the Sirius has an amber turn signal section, I'm thinking that will be my brake flasher light followed by OFF after 10 seconds to keep it quasi-legal. Also an inline switch to disable it when traveling in a group. So maybe I'll have it installed by Saturday evening.
     
  5. Brian UK

    Brian UK GT Reference

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    If you buy "Canbus safe" LEDs, they contain a small resistor which is enough to fool the system into thinking a bulb is still there. Im sure somebody here worked out that you need a 20mA drain only to fool the dash.
    Downside of the canbus safe ones is that they run hotter, and may not last as long.
     
  6. jdub

    jdub Tuned and Synch'ed

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    I might give the SBL 67 a try in the rear turn signals and move the BAU15S-A18-T to the front turn signals. After I wired in the running light mod, my first impression was they are too bright, at least at nighttime. They might drown out the brake light.

    Grinding a bulb pin would be much easier than what I did to make the BAU15S-A18-T work in the rear signals.

    Bert, I'm curious about your headlight mods. Did you get the new bulbs to fit underneath the rubber caps? I have a set of DDM Tuning Saber h3 LEDs, rated at 10k lumens for the pair, but I am reluctant to try them because they stick out much further than the stock bulbs - there's no way they will fit under the rubber cap.
     
  7. Bert Remington

    Bert Remington Tuned and Synch'ed GT Famiglia

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    I didn't pursue the running light modification because SBL said the BAU15S-A18-T didn't much like lower voltages. I didn't look at aftermarket solutions that might use PWM or other techniques to dim the turn signals into running lights.

    Instead I pursued another visibility solution. But first I want to emphasize my solution is not for everyone. I have very effective, for illumination, HID H1 low beams but my LED H3 high beams are visibility only. That is my high beam is not for illumination so my daylight riding is high beam and all other times is low beam. I know many people add auxiliary lights but I removed the ones that came with my used 2012 Norge. I didn't need them and they interrupted the flowing lines of this gorgeous motorcycle.

    WRT the OPT7 HID H1 low beam weatherboots, I made a 1.25" horizontal centerline cut to accommodate the extra length of the OPT7 bulb. I was riding in rain Sunday and Monday so will check for water intrusion today. It wouldn't affect HID operation but would cloud the projector lens.

    WRT the SNGL LED H3 high beam weatherboots, they fit just like the incandescent H3 bulbs.

    I'll post some front and back pictures soon.

    I feel its very important to repeat my warnings. My research indicates that LEDs of any design (externally cooled like DDM or internally cooled like SNGL) are not appropriate for illumination with the Norge projector lenses. For projector lenses, you need HID bulbs with their mono-point light source vice LED bulbs with their multi-point light sources. But LEDs work well with incandescent reflector housings while HIDs less so.

    Another warning: HID bulbs generate about twice the heat as incandescent bulbs of the same wattage and the Norge projector lenses are easily damaged by excessive heat. Do not use 55W HIDs and 35W HIDs are risky. My OPT7 HIDs are 25W and I was cautious with their installation (measurements, discussions with OPT7 technicians, etc). And due to HID surge currents, do not use the MG wiring for ballast power.

    The UPS trailer missed its transfer schedule (I love package tracking) so I just got the Sirius light. Weather permitting I'll be installing it today.
     

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