LED Turns

Tech Q&A for the VTX 1800 - PLEASE keep this section tech-oriented only!

LED Turns

Postby yfx4 » Sun Jun 21, 2009 8:28 pm

I posted this same question on VTXOA

On my 2007 1800R spec2 I had LED rear turns with a Kury triple whammy that worked great. Couldn't leave well enough alone and added front turn LEDs but took out the Kury. Yes, they flash fast. The rear still work fine but now BOTH front turns light up when I put the switch on, only one flashes. Why??? Didn't happen with the bulbs when I took the Kury out. Since there are separate LEDs on the 'dash' for each turn direction I shouldn't need a diode fix...or do I??

Any Ideas???

BTW I do have a CD Signal minder but am not going to add it until I get the system working as wired. Give only one variable at a time.
Scott
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Re: LED Turns

Postby horseman8m » Sun Jun 21, 2009 11:54 pm

try this and let me know if it works:
viewtopic.php?f=80&t=873
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Re: LED Turns

Postby yfx4 » Mon Jun 22, 2009 6:13 am

Thanks for the idea but my flasher has 9 wires so I can't swap it out.

It's not the rate I'm wondering about, that's just a load issue. My question is WHY do both front turns come on but only 1 flashes when the turn signal switch is on?
Scott
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Re: LED Turns

Postby yfx4 » Mon Jun 22, 2009 8:13 am

With the Kury back in I have no front running lights. When I put the turn signal on I have BOTH font turns on with the proper side flashing. Is this all due to needing a second load resistor?? I know the rate is load dependent but....
Scott
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DISCLAIMER: I really have no idea what I'm talking about. If you take my advice on anything do so at your own risk. I'm pretty much clueless across the boarc. I just fiddle until it's fixed or REALLY broken.
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Re: LED Turns

Postby yfx4 » Mon Jun 22, 2009 9:55 am

Talked to Kury support. The RTB unit does not affect the front signals at all. As best I can understand it the front signals are a electrical loop as running lights (they are single-filament bulbs, not dual) but then are switched to two loops when the turn signal is put on. Then one loop is interupted for the turn signal. The LEDs prevent the full loop from working as running lights but work 'correctly' as turns b/c they are separate circuits with the turn signal on. I guess this means I canot use LEDs for my front run/turn lamps. Back to stock! :scream:

I could confirm this with a proper wiring diagram but am not gonna pay for one now!
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Re: LED Turns

Postby Bareass172 » Mon Jun 22, 2009 8:28 pm

Sorry I missed this until now, I was on the road most of Sunday and tied up all day today.
So to make sure I'm straight - you have LED's out back, a Kury RTB unit (this is the triple whammy?) and you swapped to LED's up front and your problem began. Is that all correct?
I don't understand the problem you're having up on the front signals, are you getting a flash when they should be solid? Crossover, etc? I read and re-read and I just don't understand what's happening, sorry! :huh:

You are right about the 9 pin flasher, so you can't swap it out - but it shouldn't matter. And the 2 dash lights should prevent the need for a diode. This is why I'm trying to better understand the problem you're having. I do have a N schematic which matches what you have on your bike:

http://www.bareasschoppers.com/schemati ... ematic.jpg

But it's blurry and hard to distinguish the details...
I believe I can figure it out if I have all the details on what it's doing, and do yourself a favor and keep the signal minder out for now because the signal minder usually causes some trouble of crossed wires. ;)
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Re: LED Turns

Postby yfx4 » Wed Jun 24, 2009 5:32 pm

No problems with the rear lamps/turns/etc. All worked before the front LEDs--you are correct.

When I put LEDs in the front turns (remember they are two-wire bulbs) they do not work as running lights (OK, they have a little glow if you look really hard.) When I put the turn signal on BOTH light up and only 1 flashes. When the signal is turned off both slowly dim down to essentially off.

The signal stabilizer from CD actually fixes the problem if it is connected to a solid power source.

http://www.customdynamics.com/loadequal ... Stabilizer

There is an older thread on VTXOA.com where someone built a circuit to fix it as well. The signal stabilizer is expensive but worth the time savings to me at this point. I am using my bike to test some other configurations for Dave at CD to get a variety of solutions.

Do you have any good alternate ideas Bare?? I am open on ways to fix this odd control system.
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DISCLAIMER: I really have no idea what I'm talking about. If you take my advice on anything do so at your own risk. I'm pretty much clueless across the boarc. I just fiddle until it's fixed or REALLY broken.
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Re: LED Turns

Postby Bareass172 » Thu Jun 25, 2009 12:41 am

yfx4 wrote:No problems with the rear lamps/turns/etc. All worked before the front LEDs--you are correct.

When I put LEDs in the front turns (remember they are two-wire bulbs) they do not work as running lights (OK, they have a little glow if you look really hard.) When I put the turn signal on BOTH light up and only 1 flashes. When the signal is turned off both slowly dim down to essentially off.

The signal stabilizer from CD actually fixes the problem if it is connected to a solid power source.

http://www.customdynamics.com/loadequal ... Stabilizer

There is an older thread on VTXOA.com where someone built a circuit to fix it as well. The signal stabilizer is expensive but worth the time savings to me at this point. I am using my bike to test some other configurations for Dave at CD to get a variety of solutions.

Do you have any good alternate ideas Bare?? I am open on ways to fix this odd control system.

This is a problem I recently discovered when helping IL-Mark. I have very limited hands-on experience with the newer model VTX's that have the 9-pin flashers, there just aren't many around me that I've worked on. Most of my expertise is limited to helping others troubleshoot through email and on the forum like right now. What I discovered when helping Mark was that there was something inherent in the 9-pin setup that was load dependent. I have no idea why, how, etc but I know that adding a load equalizer fixes the problem. It's a crap solution, but still cheaper than many other alternatives. I would be very interested to see any links or additional info you could provide through troubleshooting this yourself as I consider it an opportunity to learn. ;)

If you have any questions when your troubleshooting it please let me know, I'll help wherever I can. Otherwise please let me know what you find. The biggest reason I haven't been able to do more testing for Dave myself is because of lack of access to a bike with that 9-pin setup...
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Re: LED Turns

Postby yfx4 » Thu Jun 25, 2009 8:07 am

Bare,
We have not tried a load eq. on the front, mostly b/c it seems that it would be always on because of the running lights so would overheat. Have you had that experience? Eric in Spokane did the work discovering the signal stabilizer wiring. I already had one b/c of you (THANKS!!!) so was able to test a few things and will check a few more. I'm sure there is an easy workaround but not necessarily a cheap one. Now I'm finding that there is BAREly enough room for all these add-ons. Have to find new spots to tuck things away.
Scott
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DISCLAIMER: I really have no idea what I'm talking about. If you take my advice on anything do so at your own risk. I'm pretty much clueless across the boarc. I just fiddle until it's fixed or REALLY broken.
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Re: LED Turns

Postby Bareass172 » Thu Jun 25, 2009 2:02 pm

yfx4 wrote:We have not tried a load eq. on the front, mostly b/c it seems that it would be always on because of the running lights so would overheat. Have you had that experience?

You're exactly right, good catch... I keep forgetting (not really forgetting, but overlooking I suppose) that we're dealing with a single wire setup and I get so used to thinking of the old 2 wire setup and its solutions. :huh:
I don't understand what Honda did with this thing and it's gonna drive me nuts trying to figure it out. :wall:

I want to believe that there is a better solution than a load equalizer or spending a bunch of money on signal stabilizers, but it's hard to troubleshoot something that I don't have in person to experiment with. :confused:

If you figure it out please let me know, and thanks for the reality check on the load equalizer, heh... :elated:
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Re: LED Turns

Postby yfx4 » Thu Jun 25, 2009 2:57 pm

A single SS may work for the whole bike, even if the front and rear are electrically distinct like my bike is. That's what Dave and I are looking at. Kisan has the SM3R that is a replacement for the 9-pin flasher but I've heard the unit causes LEDs to flash erratically when it 'looks' for TS switch inputs. In fact I wanted to buy one but Dave recommended I do not b/c of the problem.

Just a thought that came to me--I wonder what voltage is put to the regular bulbs when it is in running light mode. When the TS is put on the bulb seems to brighten up some. IF the voltage is lower--say below the forward voltage drop of the LED string+resistor--during running light mode, and high enough during TS function to actually drive the LEDs that info may help. Also, what happens in running light mode to the good side when 1 TS bulb goes out? That might help show a threshold of load dependence we could use. Of course it could all be a waste of time b/c then how does the information help us?

It would all be fine if we left it stock. :wistl:

Scott
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Re: LED Turns

Postby Bareass172 » Thu Jun 25, 2009 3:34 pm

But stock is boring, hehe...

I think you have some good ideas, I wish I were there to help. :pop:

You can find your running light voltage using any old multimeter and see if you are indeed dealing with a lower voltage for running lights than TS. Based on what you tell me I would think you must be, maybe as low as 6 volts or so. This lower voltage might explain a lot of problems, and would also render the load equalizer concept null and void. That entire scenario actually makes a lot more sense to me and it also gives me some ideas on possible solutions.

Does anyone have a better detailed schematic of the 9 pin flasher, explaining what wires go into it? I have a blurry one:

http://www.bareasschoppers.com/schemati ... ematic.jpg

And it appears that there are 2 orange wires, 2 light blue wires, 1 orange/white wire, 1 light blue/white wire, 1 gray wire and 1 wire that I just cannot tell what it is but it is the power wire because it comes from the 5A turn signal fuse.

Here is what I can see... 1 orange wire and 1 light blue wire go directly to the dash indicators. The gray wire goes to the turn signal switch where it then feeds power to either the other orange wire or the other light blue wire. The switch chooses which of these gets power. These 2 wires (orange and light blue) then feed power to both the rear signals AND back into the 9 pin flasher... The remaining orange/white and light blue/white wires then provide power to the front signals.

This sort of paints a picture for me about what I think is happening. The wire I can't distinguish brings power into the 9-pin flasher. That 12V is stepped down for the front lights to be running lights. When you turn on a blinker it cuts the reduced voltage to the front lights and puts pulsed 12V (flasher) to the front and rear lights as well as the dash indicators using the appropriate wires for left and right. It's not overly complicated, in fact it could probably be redesigned with relative ease - it would just take a little bit of thinking.

Can you verify for me what color the 12V wire is that I can't read on the schematic?

Thanks! ;)
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Re: LED Turns

Postby yfx4 » Thu Jun 25, 2009 6:01 pm

On my flasher (that sounds sooooo gross)

orange/green blobs/white stripe--left front turn
Blue/green blobs/white stripe--right front turn
Orange/green blobs--left rear turn
Blue/green blobs--right rear turn
solid blue--right from dash from ts switch (per Bare)
solid orange--left from dash from ts switch (per Bare)
Grey with green blobs--common TS (per Bare)

White with silver blobs and blue stripe--
9th hole empty

I looked at my notes and I checked voltages a few weeks ago with engine off, key on and got 8.x volts to the front running lamps. I'll check with engine on and with TS on.

Scott
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Re: LED Turns

Postby Bareass172 » Thu Jun 25, 2009 7:53 pm

yfx4 wrote:On my flasher (that sounds sooooo gross)

orange/green blobs/white stripe--left front turn
Blue/green blobs/white stripe--right front turn
Orange/green blobs--left rear turn
Blue/green blobs--right rear turn
solid blue--right from dash from ts switch (per Bare)
solid orange--left from dash from ts switch (per Bare)
Grey with green blobs--common TS (per Bare)

White with silver blobs and blue stripe--
9th hole empty

I looked at my notes and I checked voltages a few weeks ago with engine off, key on and got 8.x volts to the front running lamps. I'll check with engine on and with TS on.

Scott

Thanks for that last color, it was what I was waiting on. I thought it might be white/blue but I wanted to be sure. The 8ish volts is what I originally thought it might be. I second guessed myself when I started thinking that the older VTX's use 5W for running lights and 21W for turns. This system can be redesigned without too much trouble, it's just going to take a little ingenuity. I don't know that I can do 100% of it, but I bet with a guy like Dave from Custom Dynamics on board we could figure it out... Let me know what you find out, I'm doing a little figuring myself. :huh:
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Re: LED Turns

Postby yfx4 » Fri Jun 26, 2009 8:29 am

Ok. This is odd. I measured voltages to the font turns with the engine running. Twice. With different meters. I used the battery itself for ground. Checked the wires at the connector in the HL bucket. No voltage to the grounds (green wires). With the engine running and TS off each front turn gets.......3.4+/- volts. With the TS on the only voltage that changes is the side that flashes which gets 13.5+/- volts. The side that does not flash still gets 3.4+/- volts. I'm not sure where the 8.x came from--my notes aren't that good. I do know I measured it with LEDs in the TS whereas I measured the 3.4+/- volts with stock bulbs. All measurements done with the system intact--no bulbs out, etc.

I ordered a flasher unit so I can check voltages, etc with a very stable bench PS. also can check resistances and so on.

So why would the signal stabilizer apparently bring up the voltage to the TS lamps??? Load??

Also, The flasher unit is also the 'position sensor.' Does that mean it is the thing that shuts off the engine when I tip over??

S
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Re: LED Turns

Postby Bareass172 » Sat Jun 27, 2009 6:20 pm

yfx4 wrote:Ok. This is odd. I measured voltages to the font turns with the engine running. Twice. With different meters. I used the battery itself for ground. Checked the wires at the connector in the HL bucket. No voltage to the grounds (green wires). With the engine running and TS off each front turn gets.......3.4+/- volts. With the TS on the only voltage that changes is the side that flashes which gets 13.5+/- volts. The side that does not flash still gets 3.4+/- volts. I'm not sure where the 8.x came from--my notes aren't that good. I do know I measured it with LEDs in the TS whereas I measured the 3.4+/- volts with stock bulbs. All measurements done with the system intact--no bulbs out, etc.

I ordered a flasher unit so I can check voltages, etc with a very stable bench PS. also can check resistances and so on.

The bulbs you use when testing shouldn't matter, in fact you can test it without any bulbs to confirm your results. If it really is the 3.4ish volts than that's fine, maybe you just misread something - 8's and 3's look kinda similar..? :huh: :elated:
Everything else you describe is exactly as I would expect it to be.

yfx4 wrote:So why would the signal stabilizer apparently bring up the voltage to the TS lamps??? Load??

If you're asking what I think you're asking (if not then correct me) it does this so that the turn signals are brighter and therefore more noticable. Lower voltage for running lights, higher for turns to make them more visible.

yfx4 wrote:Also, The flasher unit is also the 'position sensor.' Does that mean it is the thing that shuts off the engine when I tip over??

I'm not exactly sure what you mean by this, are you referring to the schematic labeling it as the "position relay"? The tip-over sensor is attached to the front of the battery box and is something else entirely. The terminology on the schematic is vague on this, I can't exactly tell you why they call it the "position relay"... It's just a fancy light/turn signal controller.

I made this schematic up to help clearly show how the system works. I figure without the clutter of other wires and stuff it might make it easier to see what's happening.

Image

This is the entire setup in a nutshell, all it's doing is feeding reduced voltage to the front running lights and then turning off that voltage when you activate the turn signals. Turning on the turn signals also sends the same signal to the rear signals and the dash lights. ;)
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Re: LED Turns

Postby yfx4 » Sat Jun 27, 2009 7:41 pm

Thank you for the schematic. What app do you use to draw it??? It's cool!

yfx4 wrote:
So why would the signal stabilizer apparently bring up the voltage to the TS lamps??? Load??

Bare wrote
If you're asking what I think you're asking (if not then correct me) it does this so that the turn signals are brighter and therefore more noticable. Lower voltage for running lights, higher for turns to make them more visible.

Actually I was wondering why when I replace the bulbs with LEDs they don't work properly, then when I put the signal stabilizer from CD on the LEDs do work. If the running voltage is too low to light the LEDs up why does the signal stabilizer matter unless it is bringing up the voltage somehow?? Back to measuring!!! Why does my meter show low voltage on the non-turn side (which does not get brighter with the bulb in) but with LEDs the non-turn side actually lights up?? the different behavior with LEDs vs. bulbs does not add up yet.

Any ideas???

S
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Re: LED Turns

Postby Bareass172 » Sat Jun 27, 2009 10:34 pm

yfx4 wrote:Thank you for the schematic. What app do you use to draw it??? It's cool!

I just drew it in photoshop, I'm wanting to learn Adobe Illustrator because I think it will make the process faster and easier, but I just haven't taken the time to get familiar with it yet.

yfx4 wrote:Actually I was wondering why when I replace the bulbs with LEDs they don't work properly, then when I put the signal stabilizer from CD on the LEDs do work. If the running voltage is too low to light the LEDs up why does the signal stabilizer matter unless it is bringing up the voltage somehow?? Back to measuring!!! Why does my meter show low voltage on the non-turn side (which does not get brighter with the bulb in) but with LEDs the non-turn side actually lights up?? the different behavior with LEDs vs. bulbs does not add up yet.

Any ideas???

Part of the problem is because LED's require a certain amount of voltage just to light. Most LED's for bikes are designed to work in a 12V system, a little less voltage can dim them but a lot less voltage can result in what you have where they don't light at all or are extremely dim. Why does the stabilizer fix it, I don't know because I've never dealt with a signal stabilizer to know exactly how it works. I imagine that it is likely jacking up the voltage as you suspect. If I had to guess, the signal stabilizer is probably nearly identical to the stock 9 pin flasher in terms of what it does and how it does it.

As for your question about why the opposite side gets bright when the blinker is on, I'd be curious to know if you have anything else wires into these wires. Any other accessory, controller, etc that ties into them. I've seen problems arise from aftermarket stuff that theoretically shouldn't cause problems but they do.
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Re: LED Turns

Postby yfx4 » Sun Jul 05, 2009 1:05 pm

For my LEDs I made my own circuitboards and built lamps using Lumileds Superflux LEDs. They are wired in with new homemade harnesses to the right cover.

Image

Then I started having the problem with the front LEDs as outlined above. I have put other folks stuff together for a possible solution. Can y'all chime in with your ideas/comments please?

Image

OK. Two DPDT relays. One for the left side, one for the right. One electronic flasher. Three of Bare's dual-circuit-elements. One VTX-R/S/N/T with LEDs at all four corners. See my diagram above.

The com on the relays goes to the lamps. Front and rear are electrically separate on the same relay so they flash together. The NO side of the relay is connected to the flasher. The NC side of the rear part of the relay is connected to your dual circuit element so when the TS is not on the rear will function as run/brake lights. The NC part for the front is not used. The com on the front side is also connected to the dash indicator. For front running lights a dual circuit element is put inline to the front turns so the turn input is diode only, running has a diode and resistor. This is in line after the dash indicator connection.

Riding down the road the NC side is active allowing running lights front and rear. Brake light function is also active for the rear. When you push the TS switch the relay coil is energized and the NO side of the relay closes. This disconnects the brake/tail function for that side of the bike. Power is run to the TS lamp through the flasher so it flashes as long as the TS switch is connected. When the rider pushes in the TS switch the relay coil is de-energized, the relay goes back to the NC side being active and the tail/brake function is again available on that side of the bike. The front works a lot like your LED r/t/b mod on your site but the high intensity function runs through the flasher so gives a turn signal.

This scenario does not require any IC’s or programming. There is no brake flasher or auto cancel option. You can add the brake flasher I guess as a sep. module since the TS switch only selects the ‘’input’’ to the lamps via the relay. The NC and NO pins are for inputs. The front NC is not used so the TS indicators on the dash can function (if running light power was connected the dash lights would be on all the time too.) b/c the TS function does not rely on the running or brake function no extra delay is needed. I think solid-state relays would be cool but I have had no success finding one that is NC with a high enough current rating to work.

Does the way I said this make sense? I assure it you it is all quite clear in my head even if the words are not. I’ll build it, and they will…?run?flash?
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Re: LED Turns

Postby Bareass172 » Mon Jul 06, 2009 9:45 pm

At a quick glance I think it's mostly sound. I admit that I didn't get into gret detail considering it only because I am in a little bit of a hurry ATM.
I am aware of one problem, which is the reason I didn't make a circuit like this yet myself - because I had been thinking that something like this would function with only one drawback... That drawback is that the signals are never really "off". When you hit the turn signal switch all you get is bright-dim-bright-dim flashing rather than on-off-on-off flashing like the stock blinkers. Now I know it's not rocket science to come up with some sort of a setup to do this, it would likely involve some sort of integrated circuit (IC chip) - but it's definitely more than I have time to consider right now. :huh:
So with that said, I think the idea and design has merit but it may take some testing and troubleshooting. You have to consider how it will act when introduced to brake lights at the same time that turn signals are on, and things like that. I dealt with some of these problems in the testing of the LED tail light mod on my website, so I know that it can be frustrating and will involve a lot of testing, troubleshooting and eliminating problems. My suggestion would be to get the basic parts you need and lay the circuit out on a "breadboard". If you built your own LED's then you know what a "breadboard" is. :elated:
Anyways, I'd breadboard the thing and see how it reacts before soldering and assembling the whole thing. I'm not 100% sure of the pin configuration/contacts of the DPDT relays you're looking at, so you might also need to consider some diodes to prevent feedback across a few places. Just remember that if there is a connection and no power running to one portion of it, then the power will "backfeed" through the wires without power.

I'll be honest, I think you have a good handle on this. If I get some time I'll trace it out more myself, but until then I'd say to run with it and see what you get. If you have any specific questions or problems post back and I promise I'll get here ASAP. I try to get here once a day and usually can, this past weekend was unusually busy. ;)
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Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 2:45 am
Location: New Orleans, LA
Bike: 2002 Honda VTX 1800C

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