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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I have a 2002 Vrod.

I see that there are LED replacement units being sold on eBay etc. they all seem to be from China. It appears that Harley does NOT sell an LED replacement for the Vrod.

Just wondering, from someone who installed and is using a LED unit, is the visibility improved ?

also are these Chinese units reliable ? Are they of any good quality long term ?

Looking for feedback and experiences from people who have changed headlights to these LED units. Thanks
 

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"Vrod King"
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I picked up a few of them from eBay sellers. Different patterns, pretty much same output pattern. Only used sellers in the US. No problem with them and I can see a whole lot better.
 

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It depends. Light brightness will all be about the same for most daymakers, but the output pattern is what really matters. I used to sell the MicTuning LED and stop carrying them because they were super bright (brightest that I sold) but only because they focused the beam into a smaller pattern (making it brighter). Totally useless on the road because you couldn't see the sides of the road. I now sell JW and Eagle. JW is by far the best as it will turn aux leds on as you lean into corners. The Eagles are great lights with lifetime warranties. 2 things to think about with daymakers. First, they (usually) have a cutoff line like hids in a car. This is good and bad. You see WAY better in the beam, but you see WAY worse outside the beam. This is why JW turns on aux leds. When you lean into a turn you point your beam down on the inside of the turn and up on the outside. Making it harder to see through the turn. Second, they are not nearly as visible to cars. This is why all daymakers have daytime running lights (usually half moons) inside them. Straight on they are very visible but from angles they are not. This is why I like the halo daymakers. The eagle one I personally use is super visible in the daytime and honestly I think people see a ring light and pay more attention.

Now the bad parts. You will have no idea about light dispersion pattern until you buy one unless you know someone that has the exact light. The JW adaptive light is by far the best but also the most expensive. If you want to put a standard 5 3/4 daymaker on a vrod (other than the night rod with the full cowl) you have to use an adapter I make. You can check out my options at https://www.alteredstatedesign.net/

-Keith
 

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Second, they are not nearly as visible to cars. This is why all daymakers have daytime running lights (usually half moons) inside them. Straight on they are very visible but from angles they are not. This is why I like the halo daymakers. The eagle one I personally use is super visible in the daytime and honestly I think people see a ring light and pay more attention.
Unless I'm not seeing it, there isn't a "drop in" version for the early V-Rods with halo's...that's a bummer.
 

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Departed the Fix.
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I'll piggyback onto what KillerVRod says (since I have his Daymaker adapter on my F).

I like the Eagle Gen-III halo. Far, far better than stock- and the halo is certainly attention getting (especially in the daytime). However, I think that (at least in my experience) a good HID (like socalmotogear) in the stock housing may be slightly better in beam coverage-- the Eagle tends to be a bit "spotty" at longer range since it has individual beam elements instead of a reflected beam.

Additionally, I've experimented with the high-end halogen's (Hoen XenonMatch) at some length. While plug and play, they were a great idea right up until the LED's and HID's got sorted out. I'd recommend one of those two ways going forward now.

It's all a matter of trade-off's-- the HID has a cleaner beam pattern, but you have to worry about beam cut-off for other drivers, finding room to mount the ballasts (topless is your friend here), etc. The LED is more or less plug and play, and is certainly a LOT easier. The halogen's are a small improvement, but they tend to burn out quickly and don't provide a huge increase in brightness.

IF I had a "classic" V-Rod, I'd upgrade to the "drop-in" LED (the one shaped like the stock teardrop housing) as a minimum. Because, let's face it-- a guttering tallow candle from 100 years ago is better than the stock lighting that H-D came up with.

And fwiw? I've looked at my Eagle Halo light, and I've looked some high-res pictures of the Chinese version of the Halo-- and if there are any differences, they've got to be internal-- same specs, same housing, same wiring. So, there's that variable as well.

If nothing else, Eagle and Hoglightz (the Australian guys?) are a known quantity and stand behind their products, providing tech support and questions answered as required-- that's worth something in my book. KillerVRod's mount? Simply awesome.

So, overall, I'm glad I went with KillerVRod's mount and the Eagle Gen-III (NOT the Gen-II)-- cleaner install, 90-95% of the brightness of the HID, and a different and interesting look on my bike-- day or night.

Just food for thought.

R.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
WHAT about just swapping out JUST THE BULBS for LED and leaving the housing alone ?

Is that feasible ?

And is there an increase in light output upgrading to high lumens output LEDS ? should be I assume -- any downside or possibility of melting the housing due to high heat output of an LED ?

The LED bulbs I have seen have these huge heat sinks on the back, and I am wondering if that causes problems with installation.
 

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It's all a matter of trade-off's-- the HID has a cleaner beam pattern, but you have to worry about beam cut-off for other drivers, finding room to mount the ballasts (topless is your friend here), etc. The LED is more or less plug and play, and is certainly a LOT easier. The halogen's are a small improvement, but they tend to burn out quickly and don't provide a huge increase in brightness.
What about drop in replacement LED bulbs into the stock housing?
Stock bulbs are H9 and H11's - a ton options on Amazon, most claim higher lumens than comparable HID's.


IF I had a "classic" V-Rod, I'd upgrade to the "drop-in" LED (the one shaped like the stock teardrop housing) as a minimum. Because, let's face it-- a guttering tallow candle from 100 years ago is better than the stock lighting that H-D came up with.
I was ready to pull the trigger on these for my VRSCA but the claimed visibility issue with DRL's has me concerned. I almost never ride my V-Rod at night, so while the rare night visibility is very important, I don't want to sacrifice daytime.

We just need to convince them to make a 1st gen drop in light with a HALO :)
 

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are they worth it?i wonder how many riders actually ride at night,when i see most imports from the states have an average of 5 k on the clock after many years of sitting around waiting to be actually ridden,let alone at night.so is it worth it,i wonder.
 

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Earthbound for good.
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My problem is what Killer Vee pointed out:the cutoff line. I've had LED headlights in my Hummers and other vehicles, and in the mountains where I live it's that cutoff limit that sucks. Super-bright, then nothing, other than the S-curve sign a mile away reflecting back at me.
I'm also in the "don't ride at night" crowd - too many damn elk, deer, rocks, trees, hillbillies on the roads. But I definitely want the daytime viz. I'll pull the trigger on something soon, meanwhile, good discussion.
 

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F2NV
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LED lights are the way to go. Hids were great back in the day but having the whole headlight LED and no ballasts to deal with, they are fantastic. For ~$100 its pretty hard to go wrong....just make sure wire them correct.
 

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I make the housing to put any daymaker into any stock vrod shroud (except for the nightrod full cowl). You can see them here: https://www.alteredstatedesign.net/

HIDs or LEDs in stock housing does cast more light because it is unfocused. So light bleeds everywhere. This is good and bad. Very visible to oncoming traffic but also blinding. If you ever have got annoyed with little hondas with hids in stock housing, a motorcycle is actually worse because the light is higher. You have to be very careful about the bulbs themselves because there isn't a lot of room behind the headlight.

-Keith
 

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I like the round headlight look so I replaced the Vagina shaped " candle in the wind" stock headlight/housing with an EMGO 7" Classic Carbon Fiber Headlight shell/rim P/N 66-65069 with a top rated COBB Black Look LED. I also mounted two LED spots on my small sport engine guard to fill in the sides with light and went LED on tail light and all turn signals, front with a halo rim. Most amazing safety transformation in seeing and being seen. Bike looks like a UFO hovering down the road at night. Couldn't recommend them more !
 

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Earthbound for good.
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I like the round headlight look so I replaced the Vagina shaped " candle in the wind" stock headlight/housing with an EMGO 7" Classic Carbon Fiber Headlight shell/rim P/N 66-65069 with a top rated COBB Black Look LED. I also mounted two LED spots on my small sport engine guard to fill in the sides with light and went LED on tail light and all turn signals, front with a halo rim. Most amazing safety transformation in seeing and being seen. Bike looks like a UFO hovering down the road at night. Couldn't recommend them more !
Didn't you have a pic of your setup here somewhere?
 
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