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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Has anybody used any of the aftermarket 70, 80, or 100 watt H7 bulbs on their GoldWings ? I understand the need for using heavier gauge wire and relays. What I am interested in is do they create too much heat for the headlight assemblies and do they light up the road enough to make them worthwhile ?
Thanks
Ride Safe
Ken
 

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If the stock 1800 high-beams don't light up the road enough for ya' then your drivin' too dang fast. :lol:
 

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Use the PIAA 110 watt Platinum Super White bulbs and never look back had them in both Goldwings...love them..cost 48.00 per pair and never burn out.....you can see from ElPaso to Disney World..no problem...don't ever buy cheap bulbs....how much is your life worth...

It only costs 10% more to go first class...
 

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I know it can be done, but you may want to have a look at the wiring to the bulbs and use your own judgment.. 100w is nearly twice the rated wattage (55w) and the wiring is not really designed for it..
 

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Not sure about the GL1800 but I fried the reflector (top) on my 1985 GL1200 with a 100 watt bulb. The chrome reflector bubbled and browned in an area directly above the bulb.

gray_red_rider is correct "If the stock 1800 high-beams don't light up the road enough for ya' then your drivin' too dang fast. Laughing"

Basspro ... "It only costs 10% more to go first class..." ... I'm pretty sure common H-7's are only a couple bucks at any auto parts shop. $48 is like TEN TIMES THE PRICE.

I also personally believe that the 100 watt bulbs are overkill, blinding to other drivers when you forget to dim for oncoming traffic, and probably illegal. Seems to me that Mother Honda has designed a great lighting system that it's not worth messing with. My humble opinion ... :roll:
 

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Just installed the PIAA Xtreme white plus 55w = 110w H7 bulbs in my 07 lowbeams yesterday. Tried them out last night and the diff was great. To you guys who don't ride at night, stick with what ya got. As for myself, I like seeing.

FYI - no one flashed me either.
 

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the PIAA 55w bulbs are producing a 4100K spread of light that is similar in color to a halogen bulb at 110w; that's where that comparison comes from.
4100k is nice and white and really lights things up without being illegal.
A true 100w bulb will likely melt or toast something eventually.
 

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Here's something to think about.....Is it worth a $2700 bill if you fry your wiring harness? I would not add any thing to my bike unless I knew for sure (positive) that the wiring could handle it and that the relays could handle it as well.

As Basspro states it works for him. But for how long? It may work for a while and while not really knowing if it isn't frying the insulation off over time and evidually causing a fire and destroying the bike entirely.

I sure will NOT take that chance just to have a little more lighting up front.

There are ways to provide the necessary lighting that you desire without loading up the main wiring harness.

Your money and your choice. I would want to know the best possible solution before just "thinking" what "might" work.

JMHO
 

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Don't change your headlight bulbs or run a car tire on the back. :twisted:

You will catch on fire and run off the road... :lol:
 

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Several wiring harnesses later . . .

I'm considering upgrading my 1800's lighting as well. But let me tell you a little story . . .

I installed 80 / 100 watt H4 halogen lights on both of my 1500's ('88 & '89). The lighting improvement was immense! The down side is that I had to replace the headlight wiring harnesses twice on each bike! It seems that the ground lug of the bulbs can handle the extra heat generated by the higher amp-draw, but the headlight socket (plastic, of course) could not! The heat caused the plastic to melt around the metal-to-metal contact, eventually deteriorating to the point that replacement was necessary. There also some minor discoloration to the ground lead of the wiring harness, but not enough to warrant replacement.

Was it worth it? Yes & No! The light output was phenomenal in any condition (rain, snow, sleet, fog - and YES, I rode inall of the above!) and when properly adjusted, they didn't offend oncoming drivers (on low beam, that is!). The down side - - although the bulbs were inexpensive . . . the harnesses were not (Honda is REAL Proud of those puppies).

So, PIAA bulbs sound like the practical way to increase "apparent" light output on the 1800's.

Any other methods??????????
 

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I am sure somebody on here knows what the gauge of the wire is. From my memory it looks like a 14 or 16 gauge. Then we can get Lewis to tell us how much current that gauge wire will handle. You will have to include the length of the wire etc. Most of the wire that you buy in stores it will say what the voltage max is. I know most of your 18 gauge will show a rating of 600 watts.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks for your replies.
Ken
 

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Some aftermarket kits the LD riders favor have their own wiring and power to keep from burning up the factory harness. Never tried them personally but many report oncoming traffic flashes highbeams at them frequently.

I tried an aftermarket superbright H4 and had both low beams blow out at the same time after about three months. The factory Honda replacements have lasted 50K miles.
 

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wingman57 said:
Here's something to think about.....Is it worth a $2700 bill if you fry your wiring harness? I would not add any thing to my bike unless I knew for sure (positive) that the wiring could handle it and that the relays could handle it as well.
As Bill stated, the PIAAs are the stock wattage with a practical improvment in light output. No electrical issues.. Wattage is heat, not light output!!
I did once run some cheap "HID look" aftermarket 55w bulbs and ended up burning the adaptor sockets the bulbs sit in.. They may have been bad from the factory, but I'll stick to the name brand bulbs from now on I've got Sylvania Silverstars in the Subaru and the Triumph and thye're great!!
 

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PunkinWing said:
but I'll stick to the name brand bulbs from now on I've got Sylvania Silverstars in the Subaru and the Triumph and thye're great!!
Ditto on the Silverstars.
I worked at a Honda Powerhouse; I've seen the melted light housings, plugs, and wires.
The GL1500's were designed for 65 watt; I think the 1800's are too (eurospec is...) but I'm not sure.
 

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Wiring is 18 guage. Just enough for a 55 watt bulb (and nothing more) based on the length of run. We have seen the connectors melt on stock wattage...imagine what double the current will do.

I will not, under any circumstances, sell anything higher than a 55 watt H7 unless you have increased the gauge of wire. You WILL, maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but WILL damage either the insulation on the wires, weld the relay closed or just simply pop the fuse. And when you destroy the insulation, guess where its going to happen? In the least convenient place.

We are not saying don't change your headlight bulbs. There is a trememdous difference between running a car tire on an application its not designed for and running more current thru wires than they are deisgned for. Resistance and excessive current flow in wires results in heat. Resistance is not a theory, its a LAW!

There are better bulbs than stock (and for less money than the PIAA). Not going to do a sales pitch here...if interested, PM me and I'll give you the info.
 

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Lewis, Thanks for stopping by. I have a question for you out of ignorance. The type of wire I use is made by Ancor. It is tinned, copper and stranded if I remember correctly. It says its rated at 600 watts. How can that wire be damaged by running 2 100 watt bulbs? You know more about electrical than I ever will so thats why I am asking.
 

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Need to look at current flow (amps) and not watt or volts. The higher the strand count in the wire, the better the current will flow (in DC).
 

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Mine has 16 strands. Like I said it is rated at 600 watts. So how can I determine how much amperage it can handle?
 

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Forgot to add, This company sales some real good products. If you are looking for some accesories to help you hook up or wire stuff up they have a great selection of stuff. If you buy a power distribution box from Lewis and need some good qaulity connectors or wire, this company makes them. You can purchase there products at most Marine stores. This is what they make thier products standards to meet.


TECHNICAL INFORMATION
American Boat & Yacht Council Standards for Boats E-11*


The construction of insulated cables and conductors shall conform with the requirements of: 11.16.1.2.2.1. UL 1426, Cables for Boats…”11.16.1.2.2.”

"Conductors shall be at least 16 AWG. EXCEPTIONS: 1. 18 AWG conductors may be used if included with other conductors in a sheath and do not extend more than 30 inches (760mm) outside the sheath.” 11.16.1.1.2.

"Conductors shall have a minimum rating of 600 volts.” 11.16.1.3.3. “The temperature rating of conductors and flexible cords shall be at least 140ºF (60ºC) dry.” 11.16.1.3.1.

"In engine spaces, 11.16.1.3.4.1. the insulation shall be oil resistant, and 11.16.1.3.4.2. the temperature rating shall be at least 167ºF (75ºC) dry.” 11.16.1.3.4.

"Minimum surface marking of the individual conductors and their jackets shall include: 11.16.1.1.1.1. type/style, 11.16.1.1.1.2. voltage, 11.16.1.1.1.3. wire size, and 11.16.1.1.1.4. temperature rating, dry.” 11.16.1.1.1.

"All conductors and flexible cords shall meet the flame retardant and moisture resistant requirements of UL 83,Thermoplastic-Insulated Wires and Cables.” 11.16.1.3.5.

"Conductors used for panelboard or switchboard main feeders, bilge blowers, electronic equipment, navigation lights, and other circuits where voltage drop must be kept to a minimum, shall be sized for a voltage drop not to exceed three percent”. (See Table B)

Conductors used for lighting, other than navigation lights, and other circuits where voltage drop is not critical, shall be sized for a voltage drop not to exceed 10 percent.” 11.16.1.2.7. (See Table C)

"When AC and DC conductors are run together, the AC conductors shall be sheathed, bundled, or otherwise kept separate from the DC conductors.” 11.16.4.1.5.

"Wiring shall be installed in a manner that will avoid magnetic loops in the area of the compass and magnetically sensitive devices. Direct current wires that may create magnetic fields in this area shall run in twisted pairs.” 11.16.4.2.1.




"Current-carrying conductors shall be routed as high as practicable above the bilge water level and other areas where water may accumulate. If conductors must be routed in the bilge or other areas where water may accumulate, the connections shall be watertight.”11.16.4.1.6.

"Loom used to cover conductors shall be self-extinguishing. The base product (or resin) shall be classified as V-2 or better, in accordance with UL 94, Tests For Flammability Of Plastic Materials.” 11.16.4.1.9.

"Conductors shall be supported throughout their length or shall be secured at least every 18 inches (455mm) by one of the following methods:” 11.16.4.1.10.

"By means of non-metallic clamps sized to hold the conductors firmly in place. …The material shall be resistant to oil, gasoline, and water and shall not break or crack within a temperature range of -34°C (30°F) to 121°C (250°F);” 11.16.4.1.10.1.

"By means of metal clamps lined with an insulating material resistant to the effects of oil, gasoline, and water.” 11.16.4.1.10.3.

"Terminal connectors shall be the ring or captive spade types.” 11.16.3.4.

"Twist on connectors, i.e., wire nuts, shall not be used.” 11.16.3.6.

"Ring and captive spade type terminal connectors shall be the same nominal size as the stud.” 11.16.4.1.12.

"Solder shall not be the sole means of mechanical connection in any circuit.”11.16.3.7.

"Solderless crimp on connectors shall be attached with the type of crimping tools designed for the connector used, and that will produce a connection meeting the requirements of E-11.16.3.3.” 11.16.3.8.

"The shanks of terminals shall be protected against accidental shorting by the use of insulation barriers or sleeves, except for those used in grounding systems” 11.16.3.9.

"Conductors that may be exposed to physical damage shall be protected by self-draining; loom, conduit, tape, raceways, or other equivalent protection.” 11.16.4.1.8.
ANCOR meets or exceeds all national and international standards in the marine industry,
including:

Underwriters Laboratories Inc.
Cables for Boats, UL 1426
(BC-5W2), 105° C 600 volts

United States Coast Guard
CFR Title 46, Subchapter T Under 50 volts: Parts 183.05 - 45 50 volts and over: Parts 183.10 - 20

American Boat & Yacht Council
Safety for Small Craft E-8 (AC Systems), E-9 (DC Systems)

Det Nordske Veritas
High Speed Craft, Part 4, Chapter 3, Section 7

Lloyd's Register of Shipping
Part 6, Chapter 2-1, Section 7

National Fire Protection Association
Section 302

Specification Reference:
Electric Wire & Cable to be Marine Grade™, UL BC-5W2: Two conductor for 12 volts and three conductor for 120 volts as manufactured by
ANCOR, Cotati, CA

ANCOR is a Member:









ANCOR strongly endorses and recommends the ABYC “Safety Standards for Small Craft.” Written through the cooperative efforts of leaders from all segments of the boating industry, and interested public, these standards represent the best way to insure safety.


*Reprinted with permission by the American Boat & Yacht Council. This is not the full text of E-11 of the ABYC standards. It is in response to some of the most commonly asked questions.
 
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