$5 home depot headlight finished!

Discussion in 'Electrical' started by Sgt. Howard, Jan 20, 2012.

  1. Sgt. Howard

    Sgt. Howard Member

    Soon to have photos as I need to make six more of these things. Mounts right over the front fender just ahead of the caliper brake, it looks like the 1920's electric headlight without the chrome. Not truely a 'lightweight', but light enough to require little support, adjustable for windage and elevation, water resistant 6 volt LED of reasonable output- no, nobody is going to flash their brights at you, but you will be able to see at 30mph. Stylish little thing- as I said, photos soon. :army:
     

  2. olow

    olow Member

    hope u put the photos here so i see them
     
  3. SimpleSimon

    SimpleSimon Active Member

    Sarge - it's been two weeks!

    Let's see some photos and/or detailed sketches, please!
     
  4. Sgt. Howard

    Sgt. Howard Member

    pix comming today, I promise
     
  5. Al.Fisherman

    Al.Fisherman Active Member

    No rush, it's only been a month. :>)
     
  6. wheelbender6

    wheelbender6 Well-Known Member

    Can you post pics by St Patty's Day? After that, the days get long enough that we may not need a headlight.
     
  7. Al.Fisherman

    Al.Fisherman Active Member

    LMAO Howard is in WA...has about 7 hours left in today.
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2012
  8. Sgt. Howard

    Sgt. Howard Member

    finally!!!

    Actually the work had been done a while ago... real life and all that. I work as a surgical tech in a small hospital and it gets a bit hellish from time to time. Here are some shots of the light- y'know, I had totally forgotten I started this thread. Sorry.
    As you can see, the mounting is rather old school. Simple to do, don't you see- and cheap. The housing is a 3" PVC endcap- there is a short insert of 3" pipe installed to accomodate the black bezel of the flashlight itself, the bezel being secured by pan head sheet metal screws. This is the $5 Home Depot LED camp flashlight that is used here for the reflector, bezel and lens...and the lights. The screws securing the endcap to the harp (frame) are 1/4" carriage bolts mounted from the inside and secured with 'T' nuts (smooth) on the outside. The harp is bent, drilled and extended over those bolts with castle lockwashers between the harp and the 'T' nut and secured with wingnuts. Typical setup to what you might expect on one of the early irons prior to WWI- I will weld the supports for forward turn signal indicators to either side of the harp. See my other thread in this section to see the tail/brake/turn unit for the back :army:
     

    Attached Files:

  9. Sgt. Howard

    Sgt. Howard Member

    note to Al and Wheelbender- THPPPPPPPPPPPT!!!!!
     
  10. wheelbender6

    wheelbender6 Well-Known Member

    It was worth the wait, Sarge.
     
  11. Sgt. Howard

    Sgt. Howard Member

    Bah!!!

    Well now- I FINALLY took the time to drive this thing at night as the weather was reasonably co-operative... and I have to say that the $5 Home Depot light is at best MARGIONAL illumination for these bikes. If you are out in the middle of nowhere and your eyes are good at night, you will have little trouble. Your first headlights from oncomming traffic and you will have to pull over and let your eyes re-adjust. In a more urban setting, the competition from other lights shows how dim your light really is. Sad, too... I had just welded on the turn signal indicators. Bah!!!
    The turn signals/brake/running lights are bright enough to be seen in daylight- at night the brakelight is brighter than the headlight. Now I need to apply the lessons I have learned and build a proper headlight. I will include results in the thread regarding my light system
    thank you for your support :army:
     
  12. Sgt. Howard

    Sgt. Howard Member

    further developements

    So now- I've located LEDs that are six times the output of the ones in the flashlight and have ordered a few to play with... I will be replacing the ones in the lantern head with these and we shall see how much differance that makes. :army:
     
  13. jrowse

    jrowse New Member

    Are you having vibration issues with that set up ? i am killing led flashlights on my bike. i get 4-5 uses than no more, i've tried rubber in the mounts but that makes very little difference
     
  14. Sgt. Howard

    Sgt. Howard Member

    Y'know, so far I've not had issues with vibes... but then, I use heavy soldering techniques when I put them together then mount the boards rather solidly. Check your 'dead' flashlights for broken connections and see if that's what is going on- I doubt the LEDs are failing
     
  15. Rapidrob

    Rapidrob Member

    The LED is not subject to vibrations. The leads are. I use an array of 4-6 LED's that by themselves are so bright you are not to look at them directly. When combined, the out put is about 60 watts equivalent. By having an adjustable reflector,the beam will go over 100 yards at night. Set to wide angle, it lights up the shoulders of the road.
    When I get more time I'll post on hot to make the lights.
     
  16. jrowse

    jrowse New Member

    i look forward to that. i killed flashlight number 4, i guess it's the switch that went bad from the vibes. Leds still seem good
     
  17. jrowse

    jrowse New Member

    New Flashlights same issue of brighter/Dimmer flickering despite rubber in mounts
     
  18. Sgt. Howard

    Sgt. Howard Member

    Replace yer sparkplug with the NGK supressor equivilant- it might be that your light has too sophisticated a circut to function with all the RF garbage yer motor puts out
     
  19. jrowse

    jrowse New Member

    Using NGK plug already. i doubt that $4 flashlights have sophisticated circuits. The battery holder piece is the same with all the flashlights i tried. Perhaps it has room to wiggle and cause the bright/dim behavior. There are springs on both side of battery thingy, they don't get broken but possilbly they cause that too. After awhile switch stops working.
     
  20. IbedaYank

    IbedaYank Member

    Have you guys looked into using the LED mr16 bulbs yet?
    they are 12volt bulbs

    IMGP0010.jpg IMGP0011.jpg
     
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