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-   -   LED Issues (http://www.xs11.com/forum/showthread.php?t=47546)

Marc_B 02-19-2019 11:55 AM

LED Issues
Need some quick help here, and I was reading an old thread that was pointing me in the correct direction. I am ditching the OEM blinkers and installing some LED Blinkers up front and a LED brake light/blinker combo in the back. When I wired them up, all 4 blinkers turned on regardless of selecting left or right. After putting the OEM blinkers back on the front, now the left and right light up correctly, but stay solid and do not blink.

I know this is because of lack of resistance of the LED's compared to the original incandescent bulbs, but I am wondering how to remedy this. Will the simple addition of an LED relay correct this? Will I need to install resistors? Do I need to install diodes and alter the stock wiring coming out of the indicator/speedo? Or will it take a combination of those 3? Really hoping I do not need to touch the original wiring harness by the indicator light/speedo. Seeing a bunch of mixed feedback from various online sources so I am a bit stuck on how to move forward. Also if anyone has any links of actual equipment purchased and used to correct this issue that would be helpful.


bikerphil 02-19-2019 06:35 PM

If you still have the original flasher installed, it won't flash LED bulbs. Get an electronic 2 prong flasher from auto parts to resolve this. As for them all flashing at once, not real sure.

Marc_B 02-20-2019 05:27 AM

That's what I thought, just wanted clarification. Do you have any images/links of a relay that would fit? Or will literally any 2 prong LED relay work?

bikerphil 02-20-2019 06:44 AM

Yes, any 2 prong electronic flasher for LED will work, when you plug into the 3 prong plug on the bike, do not use the green/yel wire.

Marc_B 02-20-2019 09:27 AM

Appreciate the help! I will circle back after I get the relay on this weekend if the problem persists. Thanks again!

bikerphil 02-20-2019 01:08 PM

OK, keep us posted, good luck.

MPittma100 02-20-2019 07:55 PM

Led bulb change

The change you make by installing an LED 2 terminal flasher will make the signals flash. But you will lose the auto-cancel feature.

If you want to keep that feature, one of the members here has designed a flasher that will work with LEDs AND keep the auto-cancel. I am using one now and it works well. Member name is ELDR.


Marc_B 02-26-2019 08:58 AM

Problem is half solved
So I got a 2 prong flasher relay that is compatible and plugged it in. That seemed to partially solve the problem. With my LED brakelight/blinkers in the back and the OEM blinkers in the front it works perfectly. Once I toss the LED blinkers I got for the front, all 4 go on at the same time. After some reading, i believe this is due to the way the blinkers are all wired together through the indicator light in the dash, and that residual power to ground the desired side is activating the other side with the LEDs but does not with the OEM incandescents (due to the lower power needs of LEDs) I have attached a little excerpt and link below of someone explaining it a bit better than me.

"I think that the problem lies in the blinker idiot light. It "sits" between both switch poles. When you turn the switch either way, it gives +12V to the corresponding set of blinkers, and also to the idiot light. Then, the idiot light is grounded through the other set of blinkers. The current running through it is high enough to lit the idiot light, but low enough to not lit the opposed set of blinkers.

My guess is that by using LED blinkers, that need much less current, the current through the idiot light is high enough to lit the blinkers.

How to diagnose? Remove -or disconnect- the blinker idiot light and try again. This time it should work as expected.

If you still want to go with the LED conversion, you will need to modify the wiring. Either use a blinker relay that have a separate connector for the idiot light, or rewire the idiot light, taking one of the poles to ground, and the other to both switch poles via diodes." - http://forums.sohc4.net/index.php?topic=60258.0

I pulled the indicator light bulb and that corrected the 4 way flash, but it only blinks once per side selected as there isn't really a ground once that bulb is pulled. I somewhat understand the concept behind wiring the diodes to correct the indicator light to correct the issue but I am wondering if anyone has done this? If so, could you post an image or two of what it looks like? Also as an easier fix, I am thinking of purchasing these blinkers that run on 21 watt incandescent bulbs (https://www.revzilla.com/motorcycle/...dicators-arrow) which is pretty close to the OEM bulbs which are 27 watt I believe. Does anyone with more electrical experience know if those bulbs would have a high enough wattage for the system to ground correctly as is? The less wires I have to mess with from the original harness the better in my book. Just hoping for some opinions either way. Here is a few pics of the bike from when I first got it 2 summers ago not running to now. Once I get these little issues fixed it will be on the road again this summer!


MPittma100 02-26-2019 07:00 PM

Led bulb change
Unless, you have changed something on the bike, simply putting 4 LED bulbs in the t/slg locations and adding an LED flasher is all it takes. Brake lights and t/sig are separate on original bike configuration.

bikerphil 02-26-2019 07:15 PM

It seems he is running some kind of brake light turn signal combo for the rear, how that exactly works we don't know.

Marc_B 02-27-2019 05:26 AM

Haven't changed anything on the original wiring setup for the front or the rear. The only slight difference in the rear from OEM is that the brake/running light had it's own connection (3 wires Blue Yellow Black) if I'm remembering correctly and each turn signal had its own positive wire (Brown and Green) and both grounds were connected to a 2-1 bullet connector.

Since the new LED Brake Light/Turn Signal is within the same unit, all of the "new wires" are connected/grounded through the brake light harness (Blue Yellow Black) with the turn signal positive wires (Brown and Green) connected to the corresponding signal wires on the new setup. I have attached a photo of the wires just twisted together when I was testing the lights out the other day.


So is there any validity to the gauge indicator light causing all 4 LED's to turn on?

bikerphil 02-27-2019 07:02 AM

Ok, if you disable the single dash indicator does the system operate normally? If so, I believe you would then need to run a diode(s) to that bulb to separate the left and right current. I have not done this before, maybe someone who has can chime in.

Marc_B 02-27-2019 07:08 AM

I did pull the bulb, and then threw the blinker switch on. The correct side did light up but only flashed once. I am assuming that because the bulb is not present, the circuit is hindered as it is acting as a "ground". But yes, it did flash only the side I was selecting which was a step forward. Just wasn't sure if anyone else had run into this issue.

I just ordered these blinkers (https://www.revzilla.com/motorcycle/...dicators-arrow) which mimic the style of LED signals I had on the front, but they are incandescent and close to the wattage of the OEM signals (21 watt instead of 27). I am going to throw those on the front and hopefully, that will negate me having to cut and splice diodes.

Marc_B 03-05-2019 07:37 AM

Circling back here, the blinkers from revzilla solved the issue by mimicking the OEM signals wattage so now the LED's I have on the bike work with no extra wiring/hassle.

bikerphil 03-05-2019 08:52 AM

Awesome, glad it was as simple as that. :)

Marc_B 03-05-2019 09:10 AM

Yes! It was a nice end to a very strange issue. Here's a link with the rear blinker working https://drive.google.com/open?id=1eb...ozb-fc4FcDBZra

bikerphil 03-05-2019 07:58 PM

I still think it had something to do with the single dash indicator which is unique to the 79 Special.

Do Lee 03-06-2019 12:02 PM

LED Issues
It's been several years since I've logged on the sight, I'm back into riding again.

This is what I encountered when I converted my 79SF to LED lighting.

If you have a 79 Special and your using the stock pilot box the problem is at the turn signal indicator light. The left turn signal (brown wire) goes into the socket and the right turn signal (dark green wire) is attached to the outer part of the socket (shell). So the left and right turn signal circuits are linked at this point. The incandescent bulbs don't care which way the voltage flows as long as it goes to ground. The LED with little resistance sees the voltage coming and lights all the turn signals. I can't remember how the lights work when the left or right signal switch is turned on but one would flash the instrument indicator and the other would turn the instrument indicator on dim. The 79 XS Special was the only year model to have the turn signal indicator as a single light in the instrument pilot box. To make the 79 Special turn signals to work properly you will have to change out your instrument pilot box with a 1980 or 1981 Special or any Standard instrument pilot box (with indivual lights for the left and right turn signal indicators) and rewire the plug to work on your bike.
I went through the same problems a couple years ago.

I hope this helps.

I forgot to say that I used a standard pilot box and I'm just using the turn signal indication lights.
I also tried to use LED's for all my instrument lights and found out that the high beam warning light would stay on all the time with an LED. I guess this circuit has a small amount of current flow to light the incandescent bulb (very dim) for bulb burn out. All others worked fine.

Marc_B 03-06-2019 01:23 PM

The issue was definitely solely due to the indicator light... Thankfully the blinkers I replaced the OEM ones up front with mimic the wattage close enough so the little power from the indicator light does not turn on all the blinkers. I think for now I am going to keep the small incandescent aftermarket ones up front and LED's in the back as they look pretty good (almost exact to the original LED's I bought for the front) and run it as is. I am glad to know I could use a different year pilot box, didn't even think of that.

Appreciate the help!

Jeff Pattee 03-08-2019 02:24 PM

LED blinkers
I got two lamp pigtails and wired them under the seat and blacked them out with ele. tape....why buy resisters when an old lamp will do.

Schming 03-10-2019 07:25 AM


Originally Posted by Jeff Pattee (Post 510916)
I got two lamp pigtails and wired them under the seat and blacked them out with ele. tape....why buy resisters when an old lamp will do.

Be careful of the heat the incandescent bulbs produce.

Electrical tape wrapped bulbs may catch fire.

You can also paint the bulbs black.

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