Hello fellow SYM and especially HD owners. Here’s a little safety upgrade I did on The Fire Drake. Since it’s dark on my way to and from work this time of the year, I wanted to add more visibility and was thinking of adding LED side marker lights. I looked around on eBay and lo and behold, I found exactly what I was looking for. Of course these would work on just about any scooter, but this what I did on mine. Lynn's Xingyue is next in line. For under $20.00 shipped, I got two amber and two red 5 LED lit reflectors. These are 2½” in diameter lens wise and a bit over 3 ¼”overall diameter with the mounting rim. These mount flush and only protrude a little bit. The units themselves are DOT approved and very well sealed for permanent use. I placed them in lieu of the existing reflectors. Installation was actually easier than I anticipated since these assemblies are not polarity sensitive. I had to chop off the molded pigtails as I didn't need them, but I kept them since they're a good quality. Originally I had drawn an extensive wiring diagram but ended up scraping most of it when the actual wiring began. Lynn and I pulled it in one night and finished this in a few hours. Below are the photos of our progress and the end results.
Here's a picture of it with the original OEM reflectors in place. They're 2" in diameter and of a good DOT approved design.
The first photo shows the front reflector removed. They were easy to get to with a 10mm socket on a ¼ ratchet with a 2" extension. The rear ones were a different story and we had to use a small 10mm box-end wrench. Once the rear nuts came loose, the units came off easily.
The middle (upper) hole, where the mounting screw was, is the one you use for the pilot bit when you start the hole. Lynn was too chicken to cut the holes and to tell you the truth, I didn't want to "deface" The Fire Drake either. I went nice and slow so I didn't melt the plastic, but cut through it instead. Once the hole was started I did increase the speed a little, but not too much. The panels are quite thick so don't be in a hurry and go too fast or you may crack it.
Here's a picture of the hole completed. Don't worry the about clearance behind it as there's plenty for the lights. I wouldn't go too far back in drilling after the hole is made for sure as you're going to hit something. I drilled the holes with the front panel still attached to the body since it seemed easier to do.
Three small holes and 3 stainless steel screws later and here is the mounted light. Lynn drilled these since I was the one that did the most damage ;)
Here are the only pictures I have left of the rear ones and their wiring. ( Just ignore that crazed rewirerer.) I lost almost of the wiring pictures and the routing through the battery box and up to the cowl main lighting connector. Not shown is the splicing of the rear markers into the light harness connector on the body side. Since I already isolated the horns from the main lighting circuit, I wired these directly into the main lighting. They are on all the time that the ignition is on. Click on the right one to get a bigger picture. From that one you can see the rear wires are fished through the battery box and under/behind the floorboard. They are the ones that I'm holding on the right and will be mounted in the frame mounted wire retainers like I did with the new horn relay wiring as seen on the left side of the frame.
The next two pictures are of the inner cowl and the front two lights' wiring. We used inline splices on both sides of the positive and negative wires on each marker light. All connections were then sealed with military grade rubberized electrical tape. Again, it doesn't matter which wire the marker lights go to as they're not polarity sensitive. I kept the front lights totally in the front cowl assembly to ease with future removal of it. Look right by the new lights and you'll see the PITA screws I was talking about earlier. Now you can just unscrew them through the new marker holes. On the body side of the wiring harness connector in the lower middle is where I spliced in the rear markers.
Here are a couple of night time pictures. It was pretty dark and the first one was using a flash while the second one was not. I'll take some better ones to replace these shortly
Well... That about covers it for the reflector change-out and trust me when I say I'm definitely more than twice as visible than before at night. Even during the day they add better visibility and that's what really counts.
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Revised: July 06, 2010