Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  

Off-Road Lighting a YZ on the cheap - $100

Recommended Posts

I mounted this lightbar to my bike recently, I will keep you updated on how long it lasts. I think the only issue i will have is vibration and cheap electronics. Proceed at your own risk as I can imagine a hairy situation if the lights cut out at high speed. May need to back all the screws out and blue loctite.

 

 

 

Bike: 2008 YZ250

 

Light: 36 watt (3 amp draw) 8" combo with driving / flood (mine was around $25)

 

You can spend a little for the brighter CREE light option: http://www.ebay.com/itm/8-36W-CREE-LED-WORK-LIGHT-BAR-FLOOD-SPOT-COMBO-BEAM-4WD-OFFROAD-SUV-TRUCK-LAMP-/171253402889?hash=item27df7f8d09:g:rTIAAOSwrklVSGRy

 

Mount: I used some aluminum tubing and attached it to my handguard mounting bolt.

 

Battery: If you want to run 3 hrs, I think you need a 4000 mah (4ah) battery. Batteries don't give their full amp-hour rating and there is some efficiency loss. I have a 3S LIPO 4400mah battery on hand that i will use. I will do a full discharge test and let you know how long it lasts. If you aren't familiar with this type of battery do some research before proceeding. They must be balance charged with a charger designed for LIPO batteries (overcharging = fire). They must not be punctured (or fire). Each cell charges to 4.2 Volts (12.6 Volts total) and i try not to discharge lower than 3.5 Volts per cell (10.5 Volts total). For R/C use I normally recharge at 3.75 Volts per cell (11.25 Volts total). I will be recharging the battery off the bike in case of fire.

 

My battery is like the one at the following link, $40.90, dimensions 6.14in X 1.81in X 0.91in, weight is only 12.6 ounces, and there is no hard protective exterior: http://www.valuehobby.com/power-systems/batteries/3s-lipo/elite-40c-4500mah-3s-t.html

 

If my testing works out I will buy a hard cased battery like this one (to avoid punctures): http://www.valuehobby.com/power-systems/batteries/car-lipo-hard-case/elite-60c-6500mah-3s-car-lipo.html

 

FYI: 3S = 3 cells in series also 1000 mah (miliamp-hour)  = 1 ah (amp-hour)

 

Here is a great cheap charger ($34): http://www.valuehobby.com/power-systems/chargers/c6-and-power-supply.html

 

You can find other suppliers for these electronics, I have had good luck with Value Hobby.

 

You will need to solder wires / plugs. The battery usually comes with a Deans style T-Plug, get them here ($2): http://www.valuehobby.com/accessories/connectors/male-female-t-connector-5set.html

 

So if you can score a light for $25 + $41 battery + $34 charger = $100.

 

I strapped the battery to my handlebar pad and did a loop through my 30 acres. The light is great! Woods really light up and the open grass areas do as well.

 

My second post will show pictures of my setup. I haven't incorporated a switch yet, be mindful that connecting the plugs will make a small spark...don't hold it near your tank vent.

 

Later I will do a ride down the gravel road to see how fast I can go and safely see up front. At that time I will also run a timer to check battery life. 

 

My ultimate goal would be to have a tool-less quick mount that i can pull off and only use in the evenings. Also would be nice to incorporate a battery mount.

 

 

 

 

  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Optional: for monitoring low battery you can get this $4 beeper meter:

 

http://www.valuehobby.com/accessories/batttery-accessories/lipo-voltage-alarm-tester.html

 

Set it to 3.8 Volts per cell then give yourself a buffer to get back home before you lose lighting. I have one of these so I will test it out to see if it can be heard when the bike running and helmet on. The white plug coming out of the battery is the Balance Tap and this device attaches there.

 

8s-meter2.jpg

 

elite-40c-4500mah-3s.jpg

Edited by markmc2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nice set up, but I think I would cut out a number plate and have the light mounted in the forks between upper/lower clamps.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nice set up, but I think I would cut out a number plate and have the light mounted in the forks between upper/lower clamps.

 

I agree that would be a nice location. I didn't want to do anything non-reversible before discovering how much i utilize it. it has been getting dark at 5:30pm so this will be my only shot for riding after work. in the summer it doesn't get dark until 9pm so i may just mount this up for winter time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree that would be a nice location. I didn't want to do anything non-reversible before discovering how much i utilize it. it has been getting dark at 5:30pm so this will be my only shot for riding after work. in the summer it doesn't get dark until 9pm so i may just mount this up for winter time.

Number plates are cheap, you should have someone in the area with an extra if you don't.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here is what I use.  Funny I can't seem to find it on Baja Designs' website, but here it is sold by another source.  I use it to mount a single 60w 7" led light on my bike and my son's KDX and attach it to the fork tubes with some vinyl tubing to protect the forks.  Super duper strong and you can use it to mount a number of different types of lights including duals and light bars.

 

http://www.cyclenutz.com/Baja-Designs-Fuego-Motorcycle-Mount-Kit_p_42.html

 

http://doctorenduro.com/dual_sport_enduro_off_road_motorcycle_race_lights_clip_image002_0006.jpg

 

The aluminum light protector is extra and not needed, the the black steel mount. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Battery system is a good setup for a YZ, but something about your math does not add up.  How do you get a light that draws 3 amps to last for 3 hours with a battery that is only 4000 mah?  It should require something at least 9000 mah.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Battery system is a good setup for a YZ, but something about your math does not add up. How do you get a light that draws 3 amps to last for 3 hours with a battery that is only 4000 mah? It should require something at least 9000 mah.

You are correct i must have had a brain fart when number crunching! Two 4500 mah batteries wired parrallel should get close to 3 hrs.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mark - any updates on your set-up? Interested to hear if the light is holding up to riding offroad and if going with a battery setup is worth the hassle of removing from the bike to charge? And any other thoughts or comments you can share.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mark - any updates on your set-up? Interested to hear if the light is holding up to riding offroad and if going with a battery setup is worth the hassle of removing from the bike to charge? And any other thoughts or comments you can share.

You won't have to remove the battery if you attach charging pigtails...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you are using Lipo batteries I would say that they definitely need to be removed to charge. Those things tend to go up in flames quiet spectacularly .

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I know from experience that those lipos hold up well in RC cars that regularly take some very serious jolting impacts, so the number plate area is pretty calm in comparison.

Hobbyking sells a lot of good quality pro level turnigy batteries. 5000mah for like $25 is common.

Those batteries are plenty light enough to carry a spare as well.

Half the weight of nicad/nimh. They make your lithium ion drill batteries feel as heavy as a 4 stroke.

The RC car and battery industry have made some serious leaps and bounds in battery tech with lipos.

Great way to link the two industries together. Im kind of surprised this hasnt been a bigger idea for lighting.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Pretty cool, but mounting location doesn't look like it will weather a get off very well. Interested in how the field testing goes.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Reply with:

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...