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Author Topic: Has anyone fitted a HID light to their Zero?  (Read 1409 times)

grmarks

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Has anyone fitted a HID light to their Zero?
« on: January 30, 2016, 11:32:17 AM »

Has anyone fitted a HID light to their Zero? How about RF affects?

I just tried an LED and although the light is a whiter colour it is not as bright in the distance as the stock halogen globe.
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mrwilsn

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Re: Has anyone fitted a HID light to their Zero?
« Reply #1 on: January 30, 2016, 06:10:22 PM »

I tried it but it didn't work out very well.  The LED lights I have tried are plug and play.  The HID was able to plug right into the H4 plug on the bike but it requires an extra 12V power and ground connections for the ballast.  The HID lights need an insane amount of power when they are initially turned on (the HID ignition voltage is in the 24kV range).  The ballast provides the voltage needed to ignite the HID and to regulate current draw after the HID is tuned ON.

However, I ran into two problems that I was not able to resolve and eventually just switched to LED.

1. When I initially turned on the bike the bike display would be blank.  The blue back lighting would be ON but all the text would be missing.  After 5-10 seconds I would turn the bike OFF and then back ON and everything would be fine.  The HID needs tons of power to ignite but once its warmed up it doesn't need so much.

2. The HID would randomly turn OFF while riding.  It seemed to happen when I would go over bumps but I was never really able to definitively determine the root cause.

I tried couple different wiring configurations to try to correct these problems.  Initially I had the 12V power and ground connections for the HID ballast wired to an SAE connector and plugged into the accessory plug on the Zero.  Next I tried to move the ground wire to connect to the best ground point I could find on the bike (I didn't want to drill into metal or have to scrape away any paint).  Under the headlight there is a ground wire that is connected to the dash/headlight mounting spot.  It appears this is the 12V circuit ground for the dash and headlight so I though maybe using a common ground would help....nope.

I already had a dedicated 12V battery I installed for some XkGlow LED lights so I decided to connect the ballast 12V and ground to the dedicated battery.  Of course, the HID is still plugged into the H4 connector on the bike.  Still the same problems.  The last thing I tried was to connect the dedicated battery to the ground point I mentioned earlier.  This didn't work either.

Ultimately, I ended up switching to the LED headlight even though I liked the color and brightness of the HID much better.  I was worried that over the long term I was going to do damage to the display or even other electronics on the bike.  However, even if there wasn't any damage caused when the HID ignites, it is completely unacceptable for the HID to randomly turn OFF while riding.  During the day I wouldn't even notice until I got home but in the night it's obviously super dangerous to have the headlight just turn OFF without warning.  The only way to get it back on would be to turn the bike OFF and then back ON.

I was using an HID meant for a car.  I have considered trying to find one that is designed for a motorcycle thinking that they might not draw so much power but for now I am happy enough with the LED that I don't want to mess with it.  I might still give it a go sometime if I get bored.
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2014 Zero S

grmarks

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Re: Has anyone fitted a HID light to their Zero?
« Reply #2 on: January 30, 2016, 06:31:29 PM »

Thanks for the info MRWILSN.

I have a HID I bought for a conversion from petrol (gas for my American readers) to electric. I used a DC to DC converter that put out 7 amps (called a junior megamod (I think)) instead of a 12V battery and got it working just fine on that bike, but I never finished the conversion so it has never done anything more than a few test km. The bike turned out to heavy to register.

I was thinking of using the HID from it on the Zero. The driver box is quite large though, and I can't remember if it used an extra power cable or just plug and play as the LED is. I will have to check it out. But it was designed for a bike.
« Last Edit: January 30, 2016, 06:33:38 PM by grmarks »
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mrwilsn

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Re: Has anyone fitted a HID light to their Zero?
« Reply #3 on: January 30, 2016, 07:10:20 PM »

If you get it working I would be interested to hear the results and what you did.
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Erasmo

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Re: Has anyone fitted a HID light to their Zero?
« Reply #4 on: January 30, 2016, 11:30:06 PM »

Also keep in mind that without the right reflector you can expect a lot of light scattering.
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grmarks

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Re: Has anyone fitted a HID light to their Zero?
« Reply #5 on: February 01, 2016, 08:45:37 AM »

I took the HID off the other bike and it is plug and play. I will try it out tonight on the Zero (in a temporary fashion first) if all goes well I will mount it correctly.
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grmarks

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Re: Has anyone fitted a HID light to their Zero?
« Reply #6 on: February 01, 2016, 04:31:44 PM »

Wow this HID puts out some serious heat! I am a bit worried it will soften and distort my plastic headlight reflector and surround.
The LED just adds extra light on Hi beam (2 LEDs instead of just the 1 low beam). The HID moves the globe in and out for Hi/Lo beam. When it pulls the globe in it also exposes some light to the bottom reflector and the whole spot on the road move much further up the road. The spot on the road looks a bit hi for Hi beam and a bit lo for Lo beam but can't do anything about that.

Everything seems to be working OK on the bike at the moment. Doesn't seem to upset the electronics.

I will go for a longer ride later tonight to see how I like it (have to pick up the misses from work). Its just on dusk at the moment so that makes all lights look dull anyway. 

My HID is plug and play (no extra wires) just plug it in to the headlight cable and put the bulb in the headlight.
There are 2 boxes on the cables 1) to drive the HID bulb and 2) to operate the in/out solenoid for Hi/Lo beam.

So far so good!
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grmarks

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Re: Has anyone fitted a HID light to their Zero?
« Reply #7 on: February 01, 2016, 08:52:14 PM »

OK so I have just taken the bike out and adjusted the hight of the light and have a really good Lo beam and an amazing Hi beam. It lights up the road way of in the distance (amazing for a single light).

It comes as no surprise that the HID is better than the LED on Hi beam, but Lo beam is really good on both.
So it looks like I stick with the HID but I will need to watch the heat of the globe on a hot day. I am still worried about the heat output. I may have to add some ventilation some how. Happy for some suggestions.
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Perseverius

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Re: Has anyone fitted a HID light to their Zero?
« Reply #8 on: March 08, 2016, 07:06:19 PM »

I've fitted a typical plug and play Xenon light on my bike this past week end and so far the results have not been encouraging. The electric motor on my 2013 S suddenly stops working after 10 to 20 minutes of riding. This is very bad if you are at a traffic light and the bike suddenly can't pull away. I've not had the problem where the light stops working though. The old halogen light was rated as 12V and 55-60 watt, the new HID light is rated 12V and 35W. I've guessed that the bike's computer must pick up some error during the ride and stop the motor, for some or other reason, but the exclamation error icon on the dash isn't flashing as it should if there is an error. The old on/off reboot gets the bike moving again after this problem happens. For my commute today I unplugged the high beam cable and switched the highbeam on, effectively switching the light off. It seems like using HID lights are bad on a Zero.
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You have not truly lived until you take your bike beyond where the tar ends, standing tall on violently shaking footpegs while the bike kicks up a long plume of dust behind you.

Richard230

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Re: Has anyone fitted a HID light to their Zero?
« Reply #9 on: March 08, 2016, 09:03:24 PM »

I've fitted a typical plug and play Xenon light on my bike this past week end and so far the results have not been encouraging. The electric motor on my 2013 S suddenly stops working after 10 to 20 minutes of riding. This is very bad if you are at a traffic light and the bike suddenly can't pull away. I've not had the problem where the light stops working though. The old halogen light was rated as 12V and 55-60 watt, the new HID light is rated 12V and 35W. I've guessed that the bike's computer must pick up some error during the ride and stop the motor, for some or other reason, but the exclamation error icon on the dash isn't flashing as it should if there is an error. The old on/off reboot gets the bike moving again after this problem happens. For my commute today I unplugged the high beam cable and switched the highbeam on, effectively switching the light off. It seems like using HID lights are bad on a Zero.

Could it be that the HID lighting system creates some sort of RF signal that the computer picks up and doesn't like?   ???
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Richard's motorcycle collection:  2018 16.6 kWh Zero S, 2016 BMW R1200RS, 2011 Royal Enfield Bullet 500 Classic, 2009 BMW F650GS, 2005 Triumph T-100 Bonneville, 2002 Yamaha FZ1 (FZS1000N) and a 1978 Honda Kick 'N Go Senior.

grmarks

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Re: Has anyone fitted a HID light to their Zero?
« Reply #10 on: March 09, 2016, 08:46:28 PM »

Interesting.
I have had mine on the bike for a month now and had no issues at all. I mounted the driver box inside the tank wing, it actually is mounted to the black inner part of the wing outside the right aluminium spar. I will post some pics next time I remove the "tank".
I have ridden the bike for 1.5 hours on a 38 degree C day with no problems so I guess the heat is not a problem. I can take a picture of the box it came in but I bought it a few years ago now, so it most likely is super seeded now.
It was completely plug and play, replace the globe, mount the driver box and plug it into the socket that went to the old globe. As I said it was designed for a bike. PERSEVERIUS Is your Xenon light designed for a bike?
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Perseverius

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Re: Has anyone fitted a HID light to their Zero?
« Reply #11 on: March 11, 2016, 05:00:15 PM »

Yes, grmarks, it is sold as for bikes on a bike web site. I've unplugged and re-plugged and the past 3 days riding has been problem free. I think it is probably some glitch with the computer. Does your bike not feel slightly less quick since your xenon light? I like your installation idea.
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You have not truly lived until you take your bike beyond where the tar ends, standing tall on violently shaking footpegs while the bike kicks up a long plume of dust behind you.

grmarks

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Re: Has anyone fitted a HID light to their Zero?
« Reply #12 on: March 11, 2016, 05:05:18 PM »

I think it is probably some glitch with the computer. Does your bike not feel slightly less quick since your xenon light? I like your installation idea.

My bike feels exactly the same???
Where did you mount your driver box?
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grmarks

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Re: Has anyone fitted a HID light to their Zero?
« Reply #13 on: March 11, 2016, 05:12:44 PM »

Yes, grmarks, it is sold as for bikes on a bike web site.

Could it be a quality thing? I paid almost $200 AUD a few years ago, bought it from a shop, so I was able to have the box opened and look at it etc. How much did it cost off the web?
Mine has a solenoid that moves the bulb in and out for hi/lo beam. I have heard of others that have 2 bulbs for hi/lo beam. What type is yours?
« Last Edit: March 12, 2016, 03:51:42 PM by grmarks »
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Harlan

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Re: Has anyone fitted a HID light to their Zero?
« Reply #14 on: March 11, 2016, 09:08:31 PM »

I've had issues with HID lights. I believe it may disrupt the CAN. I was able to solve this problem by installing a ferrite core on the HID wires, downstream of the ballast.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G920A using Tapatalk

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Harlan Flagg
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