Author Topic: Sidecar lights with LEDs is puzzling  (Read 1358 times)

Online KiwiGF

  • Last had an A10 in 1976, in 2011 it was time for my 2nd one. It was the project from HELL (but I learned a lot....)
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Re: Sidecar lights with LEDs is puzzling
« Reply #60 on: 17.12. 2019 20:41 »
So, is that how things will remain?

I suppose so Neil, at least until after the New Year when Paul Goff has all the bulbs I'd like to try back in stock.

Took the outfit out for a run this afternoon for a few miles. Mainly to test it two up, first with my wife as pillion and then back with her in the sidecar. She said she preferred the sidecar but only because she didn't like the feel of the bike going around corners with a sidecar attached, i.e. not leaning into a corner as she's used to it doing.

It’s an annoying problem, and probably not worth pursuing further, however when the lighting circuit is “all led” then it’s possibly that the lighting circuit wiring can “float” around voltage wise, as there is effectively nothing to prevent that happening, even a weak magnetic force near a wire in the lighting circuit could cause a voltage to occur in the lighting circuit and it appears have enough power to operate an LED, putting an incandescent bulb effectively “shorts” the lighting circuit to earth (and prevents it “floating” around) as its resistance is quite low when it’s not getting enough current to get hot.

It’s odd the brake light causes a “stray” voltage in the lighting circuit, I guess the tail and brake wires run close together and so a magnetic field could be causing the issue, but conversely the current (hence magnetic field) is minimal in the brake circuit when it is an LED  *dunno*.

The test for that theory, is to put an incandescent bulb in the brake light (so you get a big current in the stop light wiring) then disconnect the tail light (to ensure the remaining bulbs in lighting circuit are “all LED”) and see if any LEDs light up. If one does, the problem could have two causes!
New Zealand

1956 A10 Golden Flash (1st finished project)
1949 B31 rigid “400cc” (2nd finished project)
1968 B44 Victor Special (3rd project,in progress)
2001 GL1800 Goldwing, well, the wife likes it
2007 KTM 950 Adventure, cos it’s 100% nuts

Offline RogerSB

  • 1960 Golden Flash, Plymouth, Devon, England
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Re: Sidecar lights with LEDs is puzzling
« Reply #61 on: 17.12. 2019 22:24 »
Thanks KiwiGF, much appreciated. As you say it's probably not worth pursuing any further, being nothing drastic. It's more curiosity than anything else now but I will try a different set of sidecar bulbs in the New Year.

My total watts with a 12V 35/35 Quartz Halogen headlight, LED sidecar front light and the 2 LED stop lights all working at the same time (according to my maths) adds up to about 50 watts and with the DVR2 and dynamo belt to help it the 6V E3L should cope well enough. I've noticed the DVR2 cuts in around 40 mph in top.

1960 Golden Flash

Offline RogerSB

  • 1960 Golden Flash, Plymouth, Devon, England
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Re: Sidecar lights with LEDs is puzzling
« Reply #62 on: 07.03. 2020 21:25 »
Just an update for anyone that may be interested, took the outfit for a good test run this afternoon (to the pasty shop *smile* and back) with my wife in the sidecar.

During the past weeks I've ended up making even more adjustments to the alignment. I've done this about a dozen times now! I now have 1" toe-in and 1/2" lean out (which increases by 1/8" with rider seated). Now I can say the handling is good and I don't think I could improve on it. Steering is now light, it doesn't pull excessively to either left or right when accelerating or braking and now I've screwed the damper down another turn the handlebar shake is now minimal when going over bumps, sunken manhole covers, etc. but no shake otherwise, so now I feel that perseverance has paid off.

My LED bulbs 'doing very strange things' problem, previously discussed, is now solved with a stop tail light bulb for the sidecar (so same as the bike's) and a pilot light bulb from Goffy.

I've also fitted indicators with orange LED bulbs (bought from Goffy at the Bristol Classic Bike show) and fitted a green Lucas indicator warning light in the nacelle just in front of the speedo and fitted that with a green LED bulb. So now bike and sidecar have all LEDs, except the headlight which I'll keep as British Pre Focus Quartz Halogen 35/35W. Took a lot to convince myself to drill the 1/2" hole in the nacelle for the warning light though  :-\.  I had to fit what Goffy calls a 'tweaker' between the warning light and the indicator live cables. This just holds diodes that prevents current back feed and causing problems.

The latest improvement, completed only this morning and of which I'm particularly happy with, is some semi-western handlebars. As I had to fit an indicator switch, with grip, levers and mirrors I'd run out of straight bar and had to fit the switch just after the bend on the standard bars, which wasn't particularly easy or safe to operate. The bars I eventually settled on, after a lot of deliberation, are actually Norton ones (pt no 06-1046) by LF Harris, with a width of 32", a rise of 4 3/4" and pull back of 7" and a very useful 10" of straight bar at each end, so the indicator switch now sits between the lever and the mirror clamp and is easily reachable with my forefinger to move the knob for right indicators or my thumb for left indicators without having to take my hand of the grip. The extra 5" length of the bars also definitely helps with the steering and gives me a more upright and relaxed riding position.

So happy days.

1960 Golden Flash

Online lawnmowerman

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Re: Sidecar lights with LEDs is puzzling
« Reply #63 on: 08.03. 2020 13:59 »
Hi Roger

Glad you got the alignment right - makes such a difference to the handling.

When I set up my G12 / Monza I used two ladder sections on blocks bungeed to the bike and sidecar wheels with spacers to compensate for the narrower front wheel. Before making final adjustments I sat on the bike and put a couple of bags of sand in the chair and then got someone to strap the forks, swinging arm and sidecar suspension down to the working level.

The alignment looks odd when nobody is sat on the bike but the outfit handles perfectly. I never carry passengers so I keep the bags of sand in the sidecar to help on left handers.

1959 A10 SR
1938 Wolseley 14/60
1955 Ferguson TEF20 tractor
1965 Ferguson 135 tractor
1952 Matchless G80 rigid
1960 BMW R60
1954 Matchless G80S
1955 Ariel 500 VH
1951 Sunbeam S7DL
1960 Matchless G12 with Watsonian Monza
......and loads of lawnmowers

Too old to Rock and Roll but too young to die  (Jethro Tull 1976)