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Author Topic: Headlight switch extend range?  (Read 629 times)

Starpower

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Headlight switch extend range?
« on: January 29, 2017, 10:53:25 PM »

Most of my rides average 147 Wh/mi. Low beam uses 40W. By putting a switch on it it seems we could extend range 25-30%. Anyone try this?
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'13 Zero S 12.5 100% Solar charged, '14 BMW S1000R, '14 Honda Grom.

jnef

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Re: Headlight switch extend range?
« Reply #1 on: January 29, 2017, 10:55:37 PM »

Most of my rides average 147 Wh/mi. Low beam uses 40W. By putting a switch on it it seems we could extend range 25-30%. Anyone try this?

If you turn it off for an hour, you would get less than a third of a mile.   (W vs Whr)


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BrianTRice

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Re: Headlight switch extend range?
« Reply #2 on: January 30, 2017, 12:30:36 AM »

It's funny and understandable how our brains mix this up.

On occasion I've tried to express the equivalence as "40W = 40Wh/h".

60mph is a mile a minute and 40Wh/h is 0.66Wh in that same mile (though you'll spend say 120Wh in that mile at that speed).

If you slow down to 30mph and used 40Wh/mi, 40Wh/h means 1.33Wh in that mile.

So, the proportion gets larger at lower speeds, and a slow offroading trip leg would benefit a mile or so from a switch, but not commuting.

I still have a side project to complete to interactively visualize how all this works...
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clay.leihy

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Re: Headlight switch extend range?
« Reply #3 on: January 30, 2017, 01:00:05 AM »

Or in quick layman's math, 40W for one hour would be 40Wh. So riding for an hour without the headlight would save you 25-30% of a mile.

So on my FX I use very roughly 2% per mile, and commute a round trip total of 1-1.5 hours. That savings for me then would not even show on the "gas" gauge.

Now if, this time of year, I could redirect that halogen heat to my batteries...

2015 FX ZF6.5 👹 DoD #2160,6
« Last Edit: January 30, 2017, 01:06:08 AM by clay.leihy »
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Clay
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Low On Cash

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Re: Headlight switch extend range?
« Reply #4 on: January 30, 2017, 06:43:44 AM »

Seems to me that LED head & tail lights would be the in first order of business on an electric bike!
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clay.leihy

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Re: Headlight switch extend range?
« Reply #5 on: January 30, 2017, 09:43:22 AM »

Seems to me that LED head & tail lights would be the in first order of business on an electric bike!
Seems logical. I've got all but the headlights changed over, any specific suggestions?

2015 FX ZF6.5 👹 DoD #2160,6

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frodus

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Re: Headlight switch extend range?
« Reply #6 on: January 30, 2017, 10:42:53 AM »

The bigger issue is, if you turn it off, you're much much less visible to other drivers on the road, and in some places it's actually illegal to ride without them on.

A friend of ours got hit, on an experimental bike. I don't know if visibility was an issue, but the driver turned in front of the motorcycle, which was his experimental race bike, and likely did not have lights.

It's a huge risk riding on the street without them (Regardless of if it's day time or not). It's asking to be hit.

BrianTRice

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Re: Headlight switch extend range?
« Reply #7 on: January 30, 2017, 01:14:46 PM »

For anyone wondering why the bike doesn't ship with LED headlamps, the DOT doesn't allow it from an OEM, and the European market winds up following suit just to keep expenses down.
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ElectricZen

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Re: Headlight switch extend range?
« Reply #8 on: January 30, 2017, 01:50:29 PM »

An LED headlight would similarly provide minimal results.  Similar to the question of turning off the headlight.  40w bulb vs what 22w?.  Less than half of a third of a mile gained.  I recall asking Harlan what he thought, he's been sitting on an LED bulb for at least six months.  Once you do the math, it doesn't seem worth the costs or the trouble.

Btw the taillight is LED except for the turn signals.  Once again if you do the math, minimal if any gains.  While it may look more in line with what one would expect from an electric, the range gains are not likely to be noticeable at all in every day riding. 

If you are looking for REAL gains in range...  A real fairing like what Terry has used or what Brian is trying is really where the break through is.  Not in switching the lights off or to LED. 

The power of math friends! 

« Last Edit: January 30, 2017, 01:52:18 PM by ElectricZen »
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Erasmo

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Re: Headlight switch extend range?
« Reply #9 on: January 30, 2017, 04:32:22 PM »

For anyone wondering why the bike doesn't ship with LED headlamps, the DOT doesn't allow it from an OEM, and the European market winds up following suit just to keep expenses down.
What? Why wouldn't they allow LED's?

From a business side I can understand why they choose an off the shelf head light unit, it saves a lot of R&D and it is much cheaper than a LED alternative. Zero's aren't cheap to start with and a LED head light might increase the price with more than $100. On the ground the gains are negligible for 99% of the riders.
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BrianTRice

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Re: Headlight switch extend range?
« Reply #10 on: January 30, 2017, 06:20:09 PM »

For anyone wondering why the bike doesn't ship with LED headlamps, the DOT doesn't allow it from an OEM, and the European market winds up following suit just to keep expenses down.
What? Why wouldn't they allow LED's?

From a business side I can understand why they choose an off the shelf head light unit, it saves a lot of R&D and it is much cheaper than a LED alternative. Zero's aren't cheap to start with and a LED head light might increase the price with more than $100. On the ground the gains are negligible for 99% of the riders.

Damn, it's impossible to find a source for this; mainly there are disputes on the internet with no formal citations on either side. I've heard it a few times and it seemed plausible, especially since it seems that literally no manufacturer supplies an LED headlamp stock or via approved accessory.

It is generally the case that manufacturers cannot so much as tweak a switch assembly without it costing a lot of money to re-certify the vehicle for sale.

I'll back off from that, certainly agreeing about the economics.
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Richard230

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Re: Headlight switch extend range?
« Reply #11 on: January 30, 2017, 09:21:53 PM »

A number of new motorcycles, including ones from BMW, H-D, Indian and others, are now supplying LED headlights on their premium models.  So the regulatory, cost and performance barriers seem to be coming down.  How well these headlights work compared with the current H4 or H7 bulbs are something that I have not seen analyzed yet. I think their primary practical advantage is that they may never need to be replaced and perhaps their reflector shapes can be molded into different designs to enhanced the bike's styling.   ???
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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.

WDavis4692

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Re: Headlight switch extend range?
« Reply #12 on: February 03, 2017, 09:26:28 AM »

As much as I'd like LED headlights because I think they're more visible and provide superior beam pattern/strength, let's be realistic.  Your Zero headlight could run for almost 6 days straight before the battery ran out.  Heck, the bulb would probably die before then!  Halogen does have its advantages though;  it's arguably better in winter as it helps keep the headlight housing clear and frost-free.

Regardless of whether you run LED or Incandescent, turning off the lights completely is NOT something I recommend;  there is a noticeable improvement in visibility by having lights on during the day, and as bikers we need to be seen as easily as possible!
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