The BSA A7-A10 Forum

Technical => Lucas, Electrical, Ignition => Topic started by: Greybeard on 25.08. 2015 14:50

Title: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Greybeard on 25.08. 2015 14:50
I'm thinking about getting one of these: http://goo.gl/Ub2OzT

I could hide this in my headlamp shell or cowling and use a 12v headlamp bulb. I already have a really good 6v LED rear lamp arrangement and a bright 6v pilot/running light instead of a standard bulb. What I need is a better headlamp beam.

I've read an older post about these where it was stated there would be isolation problems. My thinking is that the headlamp supply, (going out to the dip switch) would only be connected to this unit and there is no reason why this converter should not share the earth with the machine earth for return on the headlamp bulb holder.

Would the power requirements for the converter be too much for the BSA 6v system; looks like it outputs 10 amps. I've sent a message to the seller asking about input power.

Wotjerfink?
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Johnny J on 25.08. 2015 16:03
If you have negative earth on your bike it should propably be ok since I belive the converter has a common minus, even thou there are 2 black cables.
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Triton Thrasher on 25.08. 2015 17:50
It will waste at least 15% of the power going to the headlight. It claims 85% efficiency.

You'll still have 6V characteristic losses in the charging and battery circuitry.

Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Greybeard on 25.08. 2015 18:00
It will waste at least 15% of the power going to the headlight. It claims 85% efficiency.

You'll still have 6V characteristic losses in the charging and battery circuitry.

Sorry TT; what does that mean in practice?
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Triton Thrasher on 25.08. 2015 18:11
I think your charging system may struggle.

And- a 12V headlight needs 14 volts to be fully bright.
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Johnny J on 25.08. 2015 20:49
A LED lamp is a solution, only draws like 20W with the same (or better) light output than a filament one.
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Greybeard on 25.08. 2015 21:05
This is from Paul Goffs site:

http://www.norbsa02.freeuk.com/goffyWhyNotLEDs.htm

I bought one of his 6v 35/35W Quartz Halogen bulbs. I'm not really impressed.
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: sparx on 27.08. 2015 03:20
Maybe worth pointing out there is actually no such thing as a "6v" or "12v" L.E.D.
  The vast majority of LEDs work at about 2 or 3 volts. The critical thing is that the current through the LED is controlled to within very close tolerances, so a "driver" circuit is incorporated which makes sure the current draw through the LED or LED array is constant irrespective of the voltage supplied.
  If you fit a 6v to 12v inverter to run a 12v LED on 6v you may find that all you are doing is making the driver circuit in the LED work harder, so it makes more sense to ask the LED supplier what the operating voltage range of the LED is, and fitting a "12v" LED that will work ok at 6v.
 
  To answer another question, if an inverter doubles the voltage the input current is twice the output current plus any losses from the inverter. A typical 12v headlamp LED bulb draws about half an amp, so using one with an inverter means the inverter will draw slightly more than one amp. I could do the maths and be more precise but it's 3 in the morning, I've finished my fag and coffee, I'm going to bed.
   
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Gavin on 27.08. 2015 14:45
Hi Graybeard, I Bought an  LED "globe" from these guys: http://www.dynamoregulatorconversions.com/online-shop-for-led-bulbs-and-light-boards-etc.php
and am very pleased with it. Low and High beam are very good. This is on my 12v -ve earth bike.

I am not aware of a 6v +ve earth LED that has low and high beam.

Hope I don't glow in the dark after drawing some counter responses.
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: sparx on 27.08. 2015 15:17

I am not aware of a 6v +ve earth LED that has low and high beam.

These people seem to have it covered:-
http://www.dynamoregulatorconversions.com/led-headlamp-bulbs-shop.php
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Butch (cb) on 27.08. 2015 15:35
This is from Paul Goffs site:

http://www.norbsa02.freeuk.com/goffyWhyNotLEDs.htm

I bought one of his 6v 35/35W Quartz Halogen bulbs. I'm not really impressed.

I have one of those bulbs in mine. I'd redone the wiring paying special attention to all of the connections and I'd have to say that mine is really quite impressively bright. So much so that I never bothered to wire in the relays that I'd bought for the occasion. Downside, as I've reported some time previously, is that the bulb doesn't work well with the Wipac lens/reflector. I either have the dip down on the front guard or high beam diverting planes in off of Stansted.

I was quite excited by this thread though. It had me thinking of hot grips and a sat nav hot shoe. I'd like those but I really am stuck on running my 6V dynamo (it's a lurve thing). I suspect from other comments here the numbers really aren't going to stack up for my application. Maybe I could just warm my digits on the device itself, I'm presuming that the missing 15% will be heat.
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: a101960 on 27.08. 2015 15:44
Yep, that's what I have fitted nice and bright. Excellent piece of kit. The ammeter is now ornamental I never see the pointer move anymore. The lamp is available in -ve or +ve and operate between 14v and 6v (see details below).

"Our new "Double Dipper" range of direct replacement bulbs replace standard twin filament headlamp bulbs and have minimal current consumption and a white light enabling you to see and be seen.

 0.26 amp and 0.52 amp low/high beam @ 12v

(0.21 amp and 0.42 amp @ 14v)

0.52amp and 1.04a low/high @ 6v

(0.44 amp and 0.88a @ 7v) .

A crisp, white light with an excellent beam pattern that will change your night time driving experience.

No filaments to blow and no fragile glass envelopes.

 Multi voltage - Each bulb will work on both 6v and 12v systems (one bulb suits both voltages)

Negative and positive earth availabe"(http://)
John
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Topdad on 27.08. 2015 15:54
Sorry John, I'm missing something or just thicker today than normal. Did you use the inverter as per Graybeards initial post or the paul goff bulb, Bob.
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: a101960 on 27.08. 2015 16:48
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Sorry John, I'm missing something or just thicker today than normal. Did you use the inverter as per Graybeards initial post or the paul goff bulb, Bob.
Bob, neither of those options mate, I got my lamp from the source mentioned by Gavin
Quote
I Bought an  LED "globe" from these guys: http://www.dynamoregulatorconversions.com/online-shop-for-led-bulbs-and-light-boards-etc.php
and am very pleased with it. Low and High beam are very good. This is on my 12v -ve earth bike.
By the way the voltage converter is not an inverter. An invertor converts DCv to ACv. Personally I am uncertain why anyone would want to stick to 6v It is simple, easy, and cheap to convert to 12v and get better and more efficient lighting. Like Gavin, my bike is also 12v -ve. I can think of no disadvantages. Modern 12v batteries are compact (although actually I use X2 Cyclon 6v batteries in series to give me 12v). 12v means less current draw than 6v and therefore things like the dip switch contacts have an easier life, and for the purist there is no visible evidence that anything has been modified.
John
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Triton Thrasher on 27.08. 2015 18:00
I think your charging system may struggle.

And- a 12V headlight needs 14 volts to be fully bright.

Those points apply to the 12V headlight bulb you were proposing. 

Is it an LED now?
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Greybeard on 27.08. 2015 18:16
Thanks for all the posts. I have a new Westco 6V AGM battery from Goffys, (http://www.norbsa02.freeuk.com/goffybatteries.htm) that I don't want to throw away. I don't want the expense of converting to a belt driven dynamo, (to achieve 12v output). I have excellent 6v LED tail & brake lights. My thoughts were that if the 6v to 12v converter could be used just for the headlamp,(incandescent) I could easily hide it in the cowling or shell. Later I thought it might be possible to power my SatNav from it as well.

After reading Paul Goffs criticism of LED headlamps I was looking for a real bulb solution.

I see other Step-up converters on Ebay that cover a wider range of voltages. This implies that I could get more than 12volts to my headlamp bulb. Can you sparky type people give me your opinion on that idea please.
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Triton Thrasher on 28.08. 2015 18:01
If you're first to try it, you'll be first to know for sure, but....

85% of 60W is 51W. 

The dynamo only makes 60W at rated speed (3,000 rpm?).  Unless it's a 45W dynamo!

There are losses in the wiring and switches.

The tail lamp draws a little bit too.

Seems like a 60W headlamp bulb will be too much. The light will be dim and the battery will go low.

A 45W bulb may be borderline.
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Greybeard on 28.08. 2015 18:11
Thanks for replying TT. I'm thinking I may take a punt and buy one of these gizmo's to give it a try on my bench.
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Johnny J on 29.08. 2015 00:19
He's not the first, for me it works fine! (with all LEDs).  *smile*
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Greybeard on 29.08. 2015 11:54
I have just ordered one of these: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/281641111105

The output voltage can be adjusted and it states a power output of up to 400W!

It's coming from China so will probably take weeks to arrive  *sad2*

When it arrives I'll have a play and let you know how I get on.

I measured the current on my 6v machine. Engine not running, with all lights on my multimeter shows less than five amps. Does that sound correct?
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Triton Thrasher on 29.08. 2015 12:16
I measured the current on my 6v machine. Engine not running, with all lights on my multimeter shows less than five amps. Does that sound correct?

Does it charge the battery to about 7 volts with lights on and engine running at road speed? That's the important thing.


5 amps at 6 volts would be 30 watts. Did the battery show at least 6 volts across the terminals while the lights were on?  If the battery is getting a bit low, the current drops.


What wattage headlight bulb is in it now?

Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Greybeard on 29.08. 2015 12:22
I'll check that when I get a chance. Thanks again TT.
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Viking on 31.08. 2015 09:26
Keeping enough electric power for running around town at night or with the light on, is a struggle for the old dynamo system.
The engine need revs. To charge and feed the electric consumption.
If you fit a step up unit you lose even more power. Please bear in mind that the voltage step up unit need cooling, and air circulation inside the headlamp I not “impressive”.
The way to 12 volt is a new 12 volt armature and 12v regulator. ( or Alton generator ).

Why not fit a 6 volt LED headlamp, and 6 volt LED rear light bulb. To ease load on the feeble dynamo system.
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Greybeard on 08.09. 2015 15:14
My voltage converter arrived from China today, (http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/281641111105?ssPageName=STRK:MESINDXX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1436.l2649)

First thing; it's a bit bigger than I was hoping for; half of it is a huge heat-sink. I don't think it's going to fit inside the headlamp shell or the headlamp cowl. Might have to put it under the saddle or maybe remove the heat-sink and fix the device to the metal inside the toolbox instead. As it's an open circuit board I need to think about protection from the wet so the toolbox sounds good but then I'd have to make my tool roll slimmer!

I've been in the man-cave carrying out some initial experiments on the bench.
I've connected a 12v bulb into the output terminals and my 6v motorbike battery is connected to the inputs, (via my multimeter set to Amps).
The gizmo is programmable, (no instructions came with it though!). Anyway, I've managed to set an output voltage of 14v, (as advised by,  (I think) Triton Thrasher) for the bulb. The bulb is lovely and bright. The input current from my 6v, (13 AmpHour)  battery is 5.7 amps.
Given that my tail lights are LED's my thinking is that if the battery had no charging it should provide about two hours of light. Does all this sound ok to you electrical guru's?

Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: bsa-bill on 08.09. 2015 17:01
definitely not a guru but if your battery is 5.7 a/h then double voltage would half the amps required so should that be 4 hours or have I just solved the worlds energy crisis
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Triton Thrasher on 08.09. 2015 18:21
In theory, it should provide 6 amps for about two hours, but I've never seen a motorbike battery power a headlamp for anything like that long.

6 V x 5.7 A gives a nominal total of nearly 35 W. 15% is lost in the stepper-up, so your headlamp bulb is consuming about 30 W of power. Seems a bit low. Can you measure 14 V across the bulb terminals with your meter?

You've gone this far- you may as well try it on the bike.
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Johnny J on 08.09. 2015 18:48
To make it more complicated, lead-acid batteries suffers from a thing called "Peukerts effect".
Normally the 13Ah is true if you discharge the battery with a load of 650mA for 20 hours.
If you apply 5-6A you will not get the 13Ah, but maybe only 8-10Ah.

So the higher the load, the less total energy available...
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Greybeard on 08.09. 2015 21:17
In theory, it should provide 6 amps for about two hours, but I've never seen a motorbike battery power a headlamp for anything like that long.

6 V x 5.7 A gives a nominal total of nearly 35 W. 15% is lost in the stepper-up, so your headlamp bulb is consuming about 30 W of power. Seems a bit low. Can you measure 14 V across the bulb terminals with your meter?

You've gone this far- you may as well try it on the bike.

Yes, I get 14v at the bulb, (or any other voltage, up to the designed maximum).
I should have said I'm using an indicator bulb; I think they are probably 21w; a headlamp bulb, (35w?) will of course need more power.
I'll update when I get a chance to play again.
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Triton Thrasher on 09.09. 2015 06:25
Ah- I assumed it was a headlight bulb.
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Dynamo Regulators Mike on 09.09. 2015 09:32
That may seem like very low efficiency of about 60%, but this does make sense for this type of unit.

The converter here is 400 W rated. The efficiency figure provided will almost certainly apply to somewhere near full output power. Because of the standing power consumption of the converter (regardless of load it will draw current for internal consumption) the efficiency falls at lower output levels.

This can be compared to the old truism that all engines are at their least efficient at idle. No useful output, but some fuel burnt in running the engine.
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Butch (cb) on 09.09. 2015 09:45
Keeping enough electric power for running around town at night or with the light on, is a struggle for the old dynamo system.
The engine need revs. To charge and feed the electric consumption.
If you fit a step up unit you lose even more power. Please bear in mind that the voltage step up unit need cooling, and air circulation inside the headlamp I not “impressive”.
The way to 12 volt is a new 12 volt armature and 12v regulator. ( or Alton generator ).

Why not fit a 6 volt LED headlamp, and 6 volt LED rear light bulb. To ease load on the feeble dynamo system.

I've got LEDs at the back and also for my pilot light. Pilot is bright enough for around town work.

Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Greybeard on 09.09. 2015 10:27
That may seem like very low efficiency of about 60%, but this does make sense for this type of unit.

The converter here is 400 W rated. The efficiency figure provided will almost certainly apply to somewhere near full output power. Because of the standing power consumption of the converter (regardless of load it will draw current for internal consumption) the efficiency falls at lower output levels.

This can be compared to the old truism that all engines are at their least efficient at idle. No useful output, but some fuel burnt in running the engine.

I don't understand most of that.  *countdown*

I'm not planning to keep the converter powered when the headlamp is off.

Bottom line; If I use this device to power a 12v headlamp bulb will it cause problems on my 6v machine? What Wattage bulb should I be buying?
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Greybeard on 09.09. 2015 12:19
I've obtained the User Manual for this DC-DC Converter. If anyone is interested I've attached a copy. Needs a PDF reader.
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: metalflake11 on 09.09. 2015 12:29
Hello Graybeard. Sorry, but this wont be the most positive (no pun intended) post on this thread.
Firstly, a belt conversion does not give you 12volts, it simply spins the dynamo faster, and makes it start charging at lower engine revs.
Secondly, removing its heat sink and expecting the battery box to do the job is asking for trouble in my opinion. If it is as large as you say it's because it must produce a lot of heat (by using lots of electricity!) and that heat needs to be dissipated efficiently.  Even if the box is 85% efficient (which I very much doubt) why not increase the 6v headlamp bulb by the other 15% for the same power usage?
Thirdly, if it is not completely waterproof I can't see it lasting very long before there's a malfunction or even a small fire.
In your situation I would clean all my electrical connections and switches first, and check your reflector against a new one to see if it's dulled with age.  There is no reason why a 6v system should not give you perfectly bright lights. Give this a Google and you will see that these simple tasks can transform your lighting.
To sum up, you seem to be over complicating your electrical system and wasting power in order to get a heat sink hot. (or if you remove it court disaster.)
Sorry to be so negative. (pun intended)
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Greybeard on 09.09. 2015 13:02
Metalflake, thanks for your input I really appreciate hearing from people who know more about this stuff than me  *smile*

Firstly, a belt conversion does not give you 12volts, it simply spins the dynamo faster, and makes it start charging at lower engine revs.
I'm not considering a belt conversion
Quote
Secondly, removing its heat sink and expecting the battery box to do the job is asking for trouble in my opinion. If it is as large as you say it's because it must produce a lot of heat (by using lots of electricity!) and that heat needs to be dissipated efficiently.  Even if the box is 85% efficient (which I very much doubt)
The description of this gizmo offers up to 400w of output power hence the large finned heat-sink. In the manual it states that the maximum output power is ten times the input voltage, so 400w can only be achieved with a 40v input voltage. In my case the absolute maximum power would be 6v x 10 = 60w. My feeling is that there would not be a heat dissipation problem. While testing on the bench yesterday I used the only 12v bulb I had, which is a 12v 21w indicator bulb. The heat-sink didn't even feel warm during that test. I'll get a proper 12v headlamp bulb and see how that goes.
Quote
why not increase the 6v headlamp bulb by the other 15% for the same power usage?
Can you explain that please. Are you suggesting that I use the converter to increase the voltage to the existing 6v headlamp bulb? TT says that a 12v bulb needs 14v, so maybe 6v bulbs will burn a lot brighter with a small voltage boost.
Quote
Thirdly, if it is not completely waterproof I can't see it lasting very long before there's a malfunction or even a small fire.
I believe that I can keep the device dry in the toolbox
Quote
In your situation I would clean all my electrical connections and switches first, and check your reflector against a new one to see if it's dulled with age. 
My battery, switches and loom are all very low mileage. The headlamp reflector may need changing; I've been thinking about that actually.
Quote
There is no reason why a 6v system should not give you perfectly bright lights.
But it's not good. I bought a 6v halogen bulb but it is still not good enough. I have to ride slowly in the dark because the light beam is not bright enough.
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: metalflake11 on 09.09. 2015 13:43
Hello again!
Right, ignore the belt stuff, it wouldn't make any difference to bright lighting anyway.
The over heating stuff needs to be tested with a much bigger bulb as you say, let us all know how that goes.
You may be able to put in a waterproof place, but as it cools down condensation will form and it will end up wet unless the unit is completely sealed.
 Another point is vibration on the bike, is it B.S.A. proof in that department?
Your battery if fully charged will be sending more that 6v to the bulb as it is, (I think about 7.5v, a fully charged 12v battery is actualy 13.6v) so putting even more volts to it would make the bulb go 'pop'. What I meant was, instead of wasting electricity powering the 'gizmo' just put a higher wattage bulb in for the same net take from the charging system.
Mileage has nothing to do wiring condition, it's age! Bad connections due to that will sap the power through the system. Pull a few apart and check for dullness and see if they have gone furry, cleaning them up could make a huge difference.
If you have any doubts about your reflector, check it against a new one before you do anything else. It's amazing how they can look ok on their own, but dull and yellow next to a new one. Again, that will make a massive difference.
If, as you say, you've tried a halogen bulb and have a good battery and charging system it's your connections, your lens, or a combination of both if your headlight is that poor.
Ask away if you have any more questions.


Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Greybeard on 09.09. 2015 14:03
The over heating stuff needs to be tested with a much bigger bulb as you say, let us all know how that goes.
I will.
Quote
You may be able to put in a waterproof place, but as it cools down condensation will form and it will end up wet unless the unit is completely sealed.
Another point is vibration on the bike, is it B.S.A. proof in that department?
I cannot answer those points yet
Quote
Your battery if fully charged will be sending more that 6v to the bulb as it is, (I think about 7.5v, a fully charged 12v battery is actualy 13.6v) so putting even more volts to it would make the bulb go 'pop'. What I meant was, instead of wasting electricity powering the 'gizmo' just put a higher wattage bulb in for the same net take from the charging system.
That's a thought. I was expecting the 6v Halogen bulb, (I think it's 35w/35w) to be far brighter than it is.
As I've bought this gizmo I'd like to try to make it work.
Quote
Mileage has nothing to do wiring condition, it's age! Bad connections due to that will sap the power through the system. Pull a few apart and check for dullness and see if they have gone furry, cleaning them up could make a huge difference.
When I say mileage I mean time as well. I renewed the wiring harness, switches and battery when I restored the machine a couple of years ago. The lights were no better then than they are now! The reflector however has been on my garage shelf for 40 years and although it's not obviously deteriorated it's a Wipac pattern reflector so maybe not trustworthy.
Quote
If you have any doubts about your reflector, check it against a new one before you do anything else. It's amazing how they can look ok on their own, but dull and yellow next to a new one. Again, that will make a massive difference.
I've just ordered a new Lucas 700 reflector with 12v 45w/45w bulb from Paul Goff
Quote
Ask away if you have any more questions.

Thanks fella
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: metalflake11 on 09.09. 2015 14:15
OK! To finish my input for now, try the 6v halogen in the new reflector first, to might be very impressed!
I had the use of a 750 Bonnie for a bit a while back, terrible lights on that for what it was. (Alternator etc.) I changed the reflector for a new one and it became everything Joe Lucas hated...........Brilliant! Literally.
Good luck.
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: duTch on 14.09. 2015 12:45

 Hiya G.B, I'm fairly interested in the progress of this, as it seems your main mission is to up the wattage output (brighter lights)with minimal current draw...but (maybe as so the other comments) I can't see that a higher voltage output will be any advantage...given the current draw to run it...?
 I'm running a halogen 35/35 in a new Hella H4 (motorcycle) reflector and it's ok in ambient town lighting- I think... but I need to check (hand in front of) occasionally to see if it's working *eek*...I'm thinking your 45/45 would be an improvement if on 6V, but being on the 12v setup... *dunno*..

 I'm inclined to think as MF says
Quote
  Even if the box is 85% efficient (which I very much doubt) why not increase the 6v headlamp bulb by the other 15% for the same power usage?
I'm thinking to do that, but will have to wait until November 'till the supplier gets back from his GB/Euro holiday...

 With my limited knowledge of electrics, My system seems to provide a fairly constant ~7.2 volts at anything past idle, so if I was to go to a 50/65W, the genny would be working almost full capacity, but if it's there it needs to earn its keep *smile*...I'd forget about the 400W of that unit though..that's a bit(lot) dreamy, as you're still governed by your battery capacity, and the Genny/Dynamo ability to keep the amps up...

 Watts is Watts- I have a 50/65W on the (12V) Guttzi for around town, and it's ok but have a 90/100W for out of town and it's great but challenges the system in town (as per my blurb at the bottom), currently running through a Narva H4, but the Hella H4 seems to have a better spread pattern.
 I also have a Lucas-'TVS'(Wasell *eek*) 700 series "Foreign Headlamp" that I'll compare, maybe tomorrow....have wrong connectors!


Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Greybeard on 14.09. 2015 14:34
Hiya G.B, I'm fairly interested in the progress of this, as it seems your main mission is to up the wattage output (brighter lights)with minimal current draw...but (maybe as so the other comments) I can't see that a higher voltage output will be any advantage...given the current draw to run it...?

Of course that must be true; 'you don't get owt for nowt', (north country saying) but when I checked my 6v lighting, (engine not running), all lights on it was drawing less than 5amps. I make that about 32Watts. If this gizmo can give me a good headlamp, (that's all it will have to do) for the fairly short runs in the dark that I do I reckon that my system may have the power to run the converter.

Quote
I'm inclined to think as MF says
Quote
  Even if the box is 85% efficient (which I very much doubt) why not increase the 6v headlamp bulb by the other 15% for the same power usage?
I'm thinking to do that, but will have to wait until November 'till the supplier gets back from his GB/Euro holiday...

With my limited knowledge of electrics, My system seems to provide a fairly constant ~7.2 volts at anything past idle, so if I was to go to a 50/65W, the genny would be working almost full capacity, but if it's there it needs to earn its keep *smile*...


I did buy a Halogen 6v bulb, 35w I think; it made no real difference to the light beam.

Quote
I'd forget about the 400W of that unit though..that's a bit(lot) dreamy, as you're still governed by your battery capacity, and the Genny/Dynamo ability to keep the amps up...

No, the blurb for this thing says that the power output is ten times the input voltage. The maker claims that 400w can be obtained with a 40v input. With a 6v input I should max at 60w

I'm having trouble understanding the pidgin Engrish to programme this piece of equipment. I've just bought a brand new Lucas 700 reflector/lens that came with a 12v 45/45w Halogen bulb so have been playing on the shed bench with the battery off the BSA. The output from the converter is adjustable, (voltage and current). The bulb shines lovely and bright at 14v but now shows some discoloration inside the glass so I may have overloaded it. Whoops!

I've just been outside again. I set the output voltage from the converter to 13v, and the bulb current to 3.5 amps, (obtained from this calculator http://www.supercircuits.com/resources/tools/volts-watts-amps-converter) and put my digital meter in series with the input to the converter to get the current from my 6v battery. The meter is showing a load of 7.7 amps. So a 45w headlamp bulb is using less than 8amps. Remember this is just the battery, so in the bike with the dynamo helping I should get a higher voltage. Does all that sound ok to you chaps?

Before I do anything else I must test the new reflector/lens with my existing 6v headlamp bulb to see if it makes a noticeable difference.

Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: sparx on 14.09. 2015 23:13
  You would be better off with a 6v 45/45w bulb. It would draw less current from the genny/battery with there being no efficiency losses through the converter (which I assume are mainly transformer losses), and if the converter should pack up in the middle of nowhere you would be up sh*t creek without a paddle waiting for daybreak instead of just popping a new bulb in.
   I'd reserve the converter for stuff that will only run on 12 volts, such as a sat-nav or phone charger.
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Greybeard on 14.09. 2015 23:22
You would be better off with a 6v 45/45w bulb.
If it's that easy why do so many owners convert to 12v?
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It would draw less current from the genny/battery with there being no efficiency losses through the converter (which I assume are mainly transformer losses), and if the converter should pack up in the middle of nowhere you would be up sh*t creek without a paddle waiting for daybreak instead of just popping a new bulb in.
Good point, but I'd just ride slowly on the 6v LED pilot light that I have; It's quite bright. Did my figures horrify you then?
Quote
I'd reserve the converter for stuff that will only run on 12 volts, such as a sat-nav or phone charger.
I was told yesterday that I may be able to get away with running a SatNav from the bikes 6v, (probably 7.5v when running) supply.
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: sparx on 15.09. 2015 01:23
If it's that easy why do so many owners convert to 12v?

 I'm not saying there are no advantages to having a 12v system, just that I don't think a converter is a good idea for running a headlamp.

[/quote]
Good point, but I'd just ride slowly on the 6v LED pilot light that I have; It's quite bright. Did my figures horrify you then?

 Not horrify , no, just can't see the point of adding unnecessary equipment that could  fail at some point. Plus a 45w 6v bulb is just as bright as a 45w 12v bulb, and would draw less current than the 12v bulb being supplied from a converter. The only advantage I can see is that if you put the converter in the toolbox it would keep a spare pair of gloves nice and warm.

[/quote]
I was told yesterday that I may be able to get away with running a SatNav from the bikes 6v, (probably 7.5v when running) supply.

You probably could. A lot of electronics stuff runs on 5v. Worth trying it on a "suck it and see" basis.
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: duTch on 15.09. 2015 05:01
Quote
Plus a 45w 6v bulb is just as bright as a 45w 12v bulb, and would draw less current than the 12v bulb being supplied from a converter.

 That's the point I was trying to make...
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"My system seems to provide a fairly constant ~7.2 volts at anything past idle, so if I was to go to a 50/65W, the genny would be working almost full capacity,......
 ...I'm thinking your 45/45 would be an improvement if on 6V,......
..Watts is Watts- I have a 50/65W on the (12V)"

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I was told yesterday that I may be able to get away with running a SatNav from the bikes 6v, (probably 7.5v when running) supply.

You probably could. A lot of electronics stuff runs on 5v. Worth trying it on a "suck it and see" basis.
I've also considered that, but it may need a 5v regulator, but I also discovered that they may need a couple of volts difference to work properly, but I know just enough to be dangerous with that *smile*

 One other thing I thought of earlier, my neighbour finally hooked up his LED spotties on his fourby, and they light up daylight *eek*....true *ex*

 So my point is maybe consider finding a couple of bike sized ones of those in different lumens/candlepowers and run them from the 12v, one for high beam and one for low beam-  as accessories.....that way you don't need to worry about legalities...??




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Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Johnny J on 15.09. 2015 15:26
I also don't really see the point of a 12V-converter and using a normal bulb, reason I did it was to be able to use a LED headlight bulb.
Draws only 20W and is equal to the light output of a 55W normal one...
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Greybeard on 15.09. 2015 16:28
I also don't really see the point of a 12V-converter and using a normal bulb, reason I did it was to be able to use a LED headlight bulb.
Draws only 20W and is equal to the light output of a 55W normal one...

You may be correct but I was deterred by reading Paul Goffs note: http://www.norbsa02.freeuk.com/goffyWhyNotLEDs.htm

Anyway, I've ordered a 6v 40/45w bulb this morning. The penny dropped and I realised that bulb Wattage, (in an incandescent bulb) equates to its brightness.

I'll report back when I've tried the 40/45w bulb in my new headlamp reflector.
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: sparx on 15.09. 2015 21:51

You may be correct but I was deterred by reading Paul Goffs note: http://www.norbsa02.freeuk.com/goffyWhyNotLEDs.htm


The technology behind LED headlamp bulbs has moved on in leaps and bounds over the last couple of years. It's a bit like computers were a few years ago, the one you could buy this week is nowhere near as good as the one you bought last week.
   I'm wondering here how long ago Paul Goff's opinion was tapped out on a keyboard. It was probably fair comment when it was written but time and technology march inexorably on.
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: duTch on 15.09. 2015 22:54
 Sorry to make dark of a light situation, but. ..
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The penny
dropped and I realised that bulb Wattage, (in an incandescent bulb) equates to its brightness.
Gravity must be a bit light over there. ... *smile*
....OK lightening up. ..
  Anyway as an example, these are probably the lights Mike has; obviously not what you need but the lady at the hardware has bike size ones but they still 
need 12v, but see how the 45/45's work out

 http://store.arbusa.com/ARB-Intensity-7-LED-Driving-Lights-Flood-Beam-AR21F-P22844.aspx (http://store.arbusa.com/ARB-Intensity-7-LED-Driving-Lights-Flood-Beam-AR21F-P22844.aspx)

 edit; are you using a BPF insert ?
 
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Angus on 18.09. 2015 19:54
I am not high jacking honest, but I keep seeing people say they are swapping to 12v to enable charging phones and satnavs. I got one of these http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Double-USB-Output-DC-Converter-6V-12V-24V-35V-to-5V-3A-Step-Down-Module-iPad-/261421509248?hash=item3cddefaa80 (http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Double-USB-Output-DC-Converter-6V-12V-24V-35V-to-5V-3A-Step-Down-Module-iPad-/261421509248?hash=item3cddefaa80). I intend to install it over the winter, I have tested it on the battery only and it charges my phone fine.
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: duTch on 20.09. 2015 01:29
 That looks like a handy item Angus, it doesn't list postage to Oz, but I just sent a message to see if....If I recall I think I started accumulating some bits to try and make one up, shouldn't be hard if one knows what one is doing- which isn't me *eek*- could end up with anything

 ...edit a hour or so later, just found this; only problem is voltage range >8+  *rant*, oh and the cost....
http://www.jaycar.com.au/Sight-%26-Sound-Car/Car-Audio-Hardware/Car-Hardware-Accessories/H4-Hi-Lo-Cree-LED-Powered-Headlamp-Kit-/p/SL3524 (http://www.jaycar.com.au/Sight-%26-Sound-Car/Car-Audio-Hardware/Car-Hardware-Accessories/H4-Hi-Lo-Cree-LED-Powered-Headlamp-Kit-/p/SL3524)

 ..but it is a set of two, so not bad for two bikes or a spare, but it also says this at the bottom;
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Warning: State road and traffic authorities do not allow retrofitting of these products to car with ordinary headlights - even if it is really simple to do so.
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: duTch on 22.09. 2015 04:07

 Hey Angus, I sent you a PM re: that doodad.   cheers, duTch

 ...and re; bright lights- I'm looking at making up a LED light array to run straight from 6v, just have to find the bits at a viable price *conf*
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Greybeard on 27.09. 2015 11:52
Well, I installed a new Lucas headlamp unit and a new Lucas 6v 40/45w bulb *idea*. Yesterday evening was dry so I took the old sickle out for a spin. Oh boy, so much better now!  *smile*
I actually needed to switch to dipped beam when vehicles were coming towards me! I didn't feel happy to be doing more than 50mph on a straight road but that's probably just me.  *good3*
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Angus on 27.09. 2015 15:25
Hi GreyBeard
Still trying to sort my similar problem on the A7, which has a newish reflector. The halogens did not work for me. they where a little better but not much, standard bulbs just seam to cast a glow on the road and disappear when someone appears behind you.  I have been swapping the A10 setup over which is better with the standard bulbs then with the halogens but still not good (old original reflector) .
So where did you source the 40/45 bulb, I assume its is a BPF bulb still. I can only find a single supplier on ebay, as your works would prefer to get from someone known.
Title: Re: 6v to 12v Step-up convertor for headlamp?
Post by: Greybeard on 27.09. 2015 17:08

The halogens did not work for me. they where a little better but not much...

...So where did you source the 40/45 bulb, I assume its is a BPF bulb still. I can only find a single supplier on ebay, as your works would prefer to get from someone known.

I also was not impressed with the 6v Halogen bulb I bought a while ago. I think it was only 35watts.
I bought a Lucas branded reflector/lens from Paul Goff and found http://jacksonautoparts.co.uk/product/lucas-6v-bpf-upgrade-bulb-llb1077 for the bulbs, (bought two). He's the bloke on Ebay I reckon.