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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Does anyone know how I might go about putting a three way light switch on my '03 VLX? I would love to be able to have my bike running without having my lights on. I often find my light hitting cars in their side windows when I am parallel parked in the city. I havn't had any luck finding replacement electronics for my bike that offer this function. Is it federally illegal to run a bike without lights?
 

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Of course that is the case while moving but what about while stationary? That is the only time I would have it running with no lights.
I have tried to come up with a plan to wire a relay for the headlight into the sidestand switch, but I dont think it can be done without screwing some thing up on the ignition, and I dont want to take the chance of burning the ICM out. I can do it with a little more thought, but Its my wifes and I need to make sure its all good and safe for her. the fog lights drag the battery down at idle, thats why I originally wanted to do this, but she just keeps it on the battery tender when she's done riding.

Man you can do it, but you dont want to go messing with the factory wiring and compromise it, those low beams arent that bright anyway, you may want to let that one go. and thats not something you want to forget to switch on, even during the day, you need to be seen.
just my opinion
Sh*t I put some 4.5 inch fog lights on the wifes, and make her cruise with the highbeam.
 

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Switch

Of course that is the case while moving but what about while stationary? That is the only time I would have it running with no lights.
What's to prevent you from turning the headlight off any time you wanted or the times that you forgot to turn it back on. I think you're just over thinking the whole thing. Just leave the headlight on and not worry about where your headlight is shining when you park.
 

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Yes, what you propose is easy. You can pick up the power going to the hi/lo switch on the left grip and simply put a SPST switch on it. The hardest part with jobs like this is (a) figuring where and how to mount a switch on the bar and (b) ensuring it is waterproof. Toggle boots are out there but difficult to find unless you buy a batch online.

If equipped with running lights, you can install an On-OFF-On (2 way SPST) so the headlight gets power with one ON and all get power with the other one. This also ensures the running lights go off when starting, just like the headlight.

If drain at idle is an issue, convert your 55W H3 running lights to 35W. Fine for being seen in daytime but less than ideal for night trips.
 

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Install a switch for the lights. main problem you have is that the lights are NOT on the same circuits, so installing 1 switch won't control all the lights. Besides the main reason the lights DONT turn off is so that the attension of other drivers is drawn to you, so they see you. If you are shining into the SIDE windows of cars when the go by so what. Those drivers can look away, they are sopposed to be looking at the road anyway.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
What's to prevent you from turning the headlight off any time you wanted or the times that you forgot to turn it back on. I think you're just over thinking the whole thing. Just leave the headlight on and not worry about where your headlight is shining when you park.
You mean like a car? Calm down buddy, I'm not running with no lights on the road. I'm no 1% ;).

Here are some of the best full replacement switches I have found but they fail to list the diameter of the handlebars they fit. Since these are all DOT approved it seems there is no law about having an off switch on motorcycle lights. I also read my local DOT lighting laws and it never mentions that the lights must be on at all times the bike is.

Yes, what you propose is easy. You can pick up the power going to the hi/lo switch on the left grip and simply put a SPST switch on it. The hardest part with jobs like this is (a) figuring where and how to mount a switch on the bar and (b) ensuring it is waterproof. Toggle boots are out there but difficult to find unless you buy a batch online.
I have seen a fair amount of accessory toggles that are simple kill switches. I guess I could install one of these in line with the existing light control to achieve my goal. Rewiring the entire control might be more of a pain.

Thanks for the feedback guys.
 

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I know that manufacturing a motorcycle that can turn off it's headlight is illegal. I don't know the legality of installing a kill switch, but you can't buy a bike with one pre-installed off a dealer lot.

I learned that a Triumph dealership, the Bonnevilles had the headlight switch removed for the US market.
 

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Here are some of the best full replacement switches I have found but they fail to list the diameter of the handlebars they fit. Since these are all DOT approved it seems there is no law about having an off switch on motorcycle lights. I also read my local DOT lighting laws and it never mentions that the lights must be on at all times the bike is.



I have seen a fair amount of accessory toggles that are simple kill switches. I guess I could install one of these in line with the existing light control to achieve my goal. Rewiring the entire control might be more of a pain.

Thanks for the feedback guys.[/QUOTE]

The down side to this, is that over time the switch will develop unwanted resistence and lower the availible voltage to the headlight, causing a dimmer than normal headlight. even the factory headlight high/low switches do it.
not saying it will happen, but a very real possibility.
and then you will have 2 switchs with even more resistence.

BUT BEING SEEN AND SAFTY SHOULD BE YOUR #1 CONCERN
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Good info guys, it looks like I can take this one off the project list. Thats too bad since I would really love to be able to click them off.

@scrapdog - I didn't know about that loss of voltage and I could certainly see that becoming a problem.
 
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