High level rear lights – Part 1 – 8 Apr 2016

As I said in my last post, The top box is now securely mounted on The Fire Bike using my belt-and-braces method. Now I want to make sure there are repeater lights mounted on the box as it overhangs the originals. I think that, in most circumstances, the lights are still visible to following traffic. However, a driver sat high up and close behind might not see them so easily.

I had hoped that there would be room behind the big red panels on the box to fit some LEDs and turn them into additional lights but, when I removed them, I found there was no clearance at all. Instead, I bought a stick-on LED light unit off eBay. It’s compact (would fit at the bottom of a number plate) and combines tail, brake and indicator light functions.

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The 8 LEDs on each side are orange for the indicators and the central ones are dual intensity red ones.

The first thing to do was to add some wiring to the bike. I needed to fit a five-way socket to provide connections for tail and brake light, left and right indicator plus an earth return. I removed the number plate and mounting hardware to get at the connections behind it.

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I have a mixture of connections here. Bullet type for the stop/tail lamp and blades for the indicators. Currently (convenient pun) everything is grounded through the frame.

I decided I could use some piggy back adapters for the blade connections and I would make up a 2-way adapter for each of the bullets. A cable with a ring connector is included to pick up an earth from a tail lamp mounting screw. So this is the bike end of my extension wiring.

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The wires were fed through some sleeving and I fitted a 5-way AMP Superseal socket on the other end. They’re a bit fiddly but reliable. Each wire has a seal and pin crimped to it. These are fed into the housing then locked in place with the red piece.

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These plugs and sockets are waterproof and a rubber boot isn’t really necessary but they make things nice and tidy.

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Ready to be fitted to the bike.

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The wiring for the socket was connected below the tail light and the ground (earth) to a tail lamp mounting stud.

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Tape was wrapped around those exposed piggy-back connectors and everything tidied up. The socket was cable-tied to the underneath of the rack before the number plate mounting was put back.

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I wish UK registration plates were smaller so I could use the original Italian mounting system. Sadly the number plate has to screw on over this.

At this stage I checked that all the bike’s original lights still worked. Thankfully they did.

Next I made up a blanked out plug to use when the box isn’t fitted. You can get these ready made but I just pushed some seals in the five holes then filled them to the top with “Stixall” silicone.

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Now I need to move on to the top box itself.

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