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Old 03-28-2016   #1
paleobiker
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Converting any 2-wire turn signal into Running + Turn lights

My Honda ST1100 had beautiful 3-wire turn signals (1157 socket) which meant that the turn signals could function as both 'running lights' and as 'turn signals'.

This might not seem like a big deal, but on a 2-wheeler where you want to be seen as much as possible, having those running lights can be a huge visibility boost. My V-Strom unfortunately has a 2-wire (1156 socket) system meaning turn signals only blink when I activate the turn signal, and stays turned off at all other times.... this bothered me a lot.

The beautiful final result! (I've also added LED light strips on the handguards)



This 1980 detailed article shows that having headlights (a proxy for lighting/visibility) OFF increased the chance of an accident by more than a factor of 2 ! Also, the oncoming automobile driver 'not seeing' the motorcycle is the biggest reason for accidents. Visibility is hugely important! Think about that....a simple lighting improvement reduces accident likelihood by more than 50%.. (page 387 in this document) http://isddc.dot.gov/OLPFiles/NHTSA/013695.pdf

To come back to the my V-Strom, I decided to modify the stock wiring to use the Custom Dynamics turn signal module to convert my turn signals into turn + running lights.

You need the Custom Dynamics blinker module, $30 shipped. You get two modules for the $30


I also bought a set of posi tap & posi lock connections to help me with tapping into stock wiring with minimal splice / cutting / soldering.


On the V-Strom, the left and right turn bulbs each have two wires. You can visually inspect them by looking into the front fairing, to the sides of the headlights.

Right side - Green wire (blinker) and B/W (ground)


Left side - Solid black wire (blinker) and B/W (ground)


The writing is pretty straightforward with the posi tap products. You can disconnect the connections between each turn wire (see the marked picture) and then use one blinker set for each side.

Wiring information for blinker module




Once the wiring is correctly done, just test it out to make sure things are working correctly. Once this final check is done, you can now go ahead and safely tuck away the wiring neatly with zip ties inside the fairing. MAKE SURE YOU CAN TURN HANDLEBARS !



Hope this helps anyone trying to get running and turn lights on their motorcycle. This works for any motorcycle with the two wire situation.

Regards,
Vishnu
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Old 03-28-2016   #2
paleobiker
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The voltmeter reads 14.2 at idle with turn signals running.

Note : all my wee bulbs are now LEDs, so I'm sure there's some savings from that surely.



Regards,
Vishnu
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Old 03-28-2016   #3
icantdrive55
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Re: Converting any 2-wire turn signal into Running + Turn lights

Vishnu: Very nice posting and clear how-to. I'm gonna have to figure out what sort of help offer I can make to you so you'll help me with future wiring hacks I need to do. Looks like you've got mad skillz!!!

Just out of curiosity, is it legal to run a continuous rear running light that's not red? Or did you change your turn signal bulbs to red lamps?
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Old 03-28-2016   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by icantdrive55 View Post
Vishnu: Very nice posting and clear how-to. I'm gonna have to figure out what sort of help offer I can make to you so you'll help me with future wiring hacks I need to do. Looks like you've got mad skillz!!!

Just out of curiosity, is it legal to run a continuous rear running light that's not red? Or did you change your turn signal bulbs to red lamps?
I'd love to offer my help, any time! Please do let me know if I can help . In return, I'd humbly like to pick your brain for bike wisdom , suspension tricks etc

I do not have rear lights wired as running lights, only the front turn signals. I agree with you, I'm not sure we can legally have running tail lights that aren't red.

I do however have brake light LED strips that flash rapidly when I brake, but it is only while braking, not wired as running rear lights

Regards,
Vishnu
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Old 03-28-2016   #5
icantdrive55
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Re: Converting any 2-wire turn signal into Running + Turn lights

Vishnu: I'd certainly let you pick my brain for crumbs of wisdom....but then, what would I be left with? You trying to find kernels of wisdom in my head would be akin to a flock of ravens picking a corn field clean of waste...and the ravens would starve! Wisdom isn't...wasn't...my strong suit. Just ask my friends--Tom Witt, Thom Boles, Scott Hyflyer, Dave Bannister. Now experience? I positively exude experience--mostly acquired through years of bad decision making and alcohol consumption--and would be thrilled to pass along whatever experiential lessons you would like to assimilate.

As for offering help, I do have an old Coates 220 tire machine and I'd be happy to offer to demonstrate tire change on your Strom. Rim scratching at no extra cost!
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Old 03-28-2016   #6
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Re: Converting any 2-wire turn signal into Running + Turn lights

Quote:
Originally Posted by icantdrive55 View Post
Vishnu: I'd certainly let you pick my brain for crumbs of wisdom....but then, what would I be left with? You trying to find kernels of wisdom in my head would be akin to a flock of ravens picking a corn field clean of waste...and the ravens would starve! Wisdom isn't...wasn't...my strong suit. Just ask my friends--Tom Witt, Thom Boles, Scott Hyflyer, Dave Bannister. Now experience? I positively exude experience--mostly acquired through years of bad decision making and alcohol consumption--and would be thrilled to pass along whatever experiential lessons you would like to assimilate.

As for offering help, I do have an old Coates 220 tire machine and I'd be happy to offer to demonstrate tire change on your Strom. Rim scratching at no extra cost!
Notice the fact that he only has 4 friends.
There is a reason for that. My reason is I'm 1200 miles away.

On a serious note, I read your write up and say "Well Done!"
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Old 03-28-2016   #7
paleobiker
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Quote:
Originally Posted by icantdrive55 View Post
Vishnu: I'd certainly let you pick my brain for crumbs of wisdom....but then, what would I be left with? You trying to find kernels of wisdom in my head would be akin to a flock of ravens picking a corn field clean of waste...and the ravens would starve! Wisdom isn't...wasn't...my strong suit. Just ask my friends--Tom Witt, Thom Boles, Scott Hyflyer, Dave Bannister. Now experience? I positively exude experience--mostly acquired through years of bad decision making and alcohol consumption--and would be thrilled to pass along whatever experiential lessons you would like to assimilate.

As for offering help, I do have an old Coates 220 tire machine and I'd be happy to offer to demonstrate tire change on your Strom. Rim scratching at no extra cost!
I'd humbly say, thank you immensely! I actually have a Set of new fork springs for my wee, along with new fork oil etc, but I feel a little sheepish trying to remove forks alone without guidance. I'm pretty happy to learn and do all the steps with someone providing guidance/oversight.

I'd greatly take your offer for guidance and wisdom on forks . And if there are any electrical upgrades you're looking to add to your ride/rides, I'd love to do my best to assist you in the same! Looking forward to your thoughts



Regards
Vishnu
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Old 03-28-2016   #8
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Re: Converting any 2-wire turn signal into Running + Turn lights

Very detailed how-to write up! Bravo ;-)

Thanks for your efforts sharing with the group
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Old 03-29-2016   #9
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A small update :- I've put in a video comparison

https://youtu.be/_dCzX9xGy6A

Note - I've replaced the flasher unit back to stock. I feel the faster blinking rate actually might help get a cager's attention better......

Full write up is also available on my blog - http://wp.me/p48a0W-1Z

Cheers! Ride safe!

Regards,
Vishnu
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Old 03-30-2016   #10
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A short video comparing how lighting looks like from different distances, head on, with my LED headlights and turn signals, as well as the LED turn strip.


60 ft then 30 ft and finally 15 ft away!

https://youtu.be/6q6I3BwjhQw
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