Low/High headlight switch wanted (H/Bar mount)

Discussion in 'Electrical' started by AussieSteve, May 31, 2010.

  1. AussieSteve

    AussieSteve Active Member

    This is mainly for the guys with incandescent headlights and lead-acid batteries.
    Has anyone found a source of handlebar-mount headlight switches with off/low/high positions?
    (I have dual low/high headlights, so I'll fit two.)


    Attached Files:

  2. The led headlight on my bike has a built in push button on the rear of the light,push once for low beam,twice for high beam and 3 times for high beam and rear strobe light.

    Its a 12v emergency car light(walmart $5) and i run it off of a 18v cordless tool battery.
    I attached it to the handle bars using a plastic mount from a reflector.

    You might find a switch you're looking for in a auto parts store or maybe a toggle switch.
  3. AussieSteve

    AussieSteve Active Member

    Auto parts stores don't sell such things.
    I have a great many toggle switches here - most aren't waterproof and none have three positions. I've also got a lot of slide and rotary switches, but none are waterproof.

    I'm looking for, possibly, a scooter switch.

    LED lights are useless in low-light conditions. Your light on high beam wouldn't even be a fraction of my low beam. Also, your light is useless for being seen by other drivers during daylight. Nice bright incandescent bulbs can be seen day or night. Much safer. (I often ride in heavy traffic.)

    My light can go 18W, 36W, 54W or 72W and is powered by a 12V 5Ah SLA battery, with a generator/regulator charging system. (Can almost burn holes in anything that gets in the way.)
  4. Last edited: Jun 1, 2010
  5. gothicguy64

    gothicguy64 Member

    ill ask supercheap in morning steve an see if i source u a switch

    less than 14 days till i get my cell mtx 1
  6. AussieSteve

    AussieSteve Active Member

    cabinfever1977, sorry, didn't mean to personally offend. If you live in a well-lit area, I'm sure that LEDs are OK.
    Unfortunately, though, I live in a semi-rural area, poorly lit, lots of potholes, gravel roads etc and heaps of unseeing drivers.
    I don't only want to be seen, I want to see.
    At 30mph, a LED headlight doesn't have enough range for me.
    Also, as I said, I want to use it during daylight hours for visibility.

    Your local Autoparts stores sell handlebar-mount 3-position switches with 'off', 'low' and 'high'? I wish I lived where you live.

    Of course, the first thing I did was search, here, on eBay and on Google. Couldn't find exactly what I was looking for. Hence my post.
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2010
  7. AussieSteve

    AussieSteve Active Member

    G'day Brad, haven't heard from you in a while.

    I'll bet you're on the edge of your seat waiting. You have to post pics etc.

    I've already been to SCA locally and AutoOne, with no luck, but I didn't expect to do any good.

    I could rig something up, but I want to find nice neat handlebar-mount switches if I can.

    I have a test setup here, but unless I find the right switches, I need four switches to do what I want.

    My lighting and charging system is slowly progressing. I've tested everything off the bike now, so I just need to sort out the details.
    The headlight is fitted, (I spent two days sweating over making the mounting brackets), I've spent the last day or so making an aluminium battery box and it's done.
    The generator is working well.
    As I said, only minor details like these switches now.
    As I promised, Brad, I'll let you (and others) know when it's all up and going.

    On an aside, once this is all working and I have a decent 12VDC supply, there's no reason why I shouldn't fit a hall-effect sensor to the magneto and a real CDI, allowing adjustable ignition timing and probably a stronger spark, among other things like variable electronic advance.

    This is a diagram of my test setup for one bulb. It's what's needed in each of the two switches. One set of contacts turns the light on or off and the other determines whether one or two filaments are powered.


    Could go electronic with pushbutton control and hours of design and board-making etc, but I'd rather find something off-the-shelf if possible.

    Attached Files:

  8. gothicguy64

    gothicguy64 Member

    its ok .
    how bout i do a little asking at a motorbike accessory shop ?

    sitting in my bathroom hall is a broken rocksolid shaft bike
    luckily the hp1 50cc motor is just fine .

    bloody potholes

  9. AussieSteve

    AussieSteve Active Member

    Mate, I'd appreciate that, but don't go too far out of your way.
    The type of switch I'm looking for isn't common and getting two will be near impossible unless I can find a supplier of new ones.
    Most motorbikes that I owned had only 2 filaments and used a second position on the ignition switch for on/off, then a separate switch for hi/lo, much like the diagram I drew. Getting both incorporated into one switch won't be easy.

    Yeah, that's sad. From memory, the rim failed. What else is broken?
  10. gothicguy64

    gothicguy64 Member

    i know what ur looking for ..
    give me a couple of hours in the morning i should have a few sources for u .
  11. gothicguy64

    gothicguy64 Member

    would u belive no triple switch only twins
  12. AussieSteve

    AussieSteve Active Member

    Brad, thanks heaps for trying. I really appreciate it.
    I'm going to have serious trouble finding a switch like I want.
    Unfortunately, most bikes and scooters have the light on/off switch incororated into the ignition switch, with only a two-position switch for high/low.

    Because of the dual headlight setup, I can't use an ignition or other single switch for on/off, or both lights will come on together. Otherwise I could use one on/off switch with two hi/lo switches.

    I did a search today and still couldn't find anything suitable.
    I'll have to think about another method of switching to control 1 to 4 filaments easily.
    I'll probably add some electronics and make a small box with waterproof pushbuttons and LED indicators. (Much more work, but then I'll have exactly what I want.)

    Thanks again for your efforts, Brad. I owe you one.
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2010
  13. Scootrax

    Scootrax New Member

    have you tried jet ski or boat shops have seen handle bar mount switches there, what about a on off on switch, i was going to use a 30a switch for a 24/36v setup as it can switch 2 circuits on and off, but u still need to mount it
  14. AussieSteve

    AussieSteve Active Member

    I'll check out the jet ski idea. Might be lucky.

    An on-off-on switch would do if it was 'double-pole', like the double-pole double-throw switch in my diagram above, but with an added 'off' position.
    Most on-off-on switches that would be suitable are single-pole.
    Good thought though. I considered a bike/scooter indicator switch but they're single-pole too.

    Forgot to add, Scootrax, welcome to MBc. I get the impression you're another Aussie, (Woolworths). Where do you hail from?

    I see your motor is an MY1018. My generator's a 100W Unite MY series motor, can't remember the model number off-hand.
    What power is your bike? (I have a 200W electric, from ZBike)
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2010
  15. AussieSteve

    AussieSteve Active Member

    So, in the end I had to compromise a little. The nearest I could get was a 3-position handlebar-mount switch with, (I think), single contacts, from FancyScooters.

    I've got one on the way, along with some spare headlight bulbs.
    To get around the lack of double contacts, I added a diode to the circuit as below, so that 'high' powers both filaments but 'low' powers only one, along with a blue LED for a high beam indicator. On 'high' beam, the 'low' filament is powered slightly less brightly than usual, but not enough to be a concern.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Jun 7, 2010