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Discussion Starter #1
I replaced my 2 headlight bulb on my 400 with H4 35/35 about 2 months ago. I was very careful not to touch the glass part with my finger when installing it. About 6 weeks ago, I noticed one of the bulb is turning black on the top of the glass part. Anybody know what causes it to turn black?
Defective bulb? Or someone else touched with their fingers before I bought it, or it was dropped before? By the way both high and low beam
is still working. Is it ok to leave it there or would it explode and it will be hard to get the broken glass back out later on.
 

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philtag6000 said:
I replaced my 2 headlight bulb on my 400 with H4 35/35 about 2 months ago. I was very careful not to touch the glass part with my finger when installing it. About 6 weeks ago, I noticed one of the bulb is turning black on the top of the glass part. Anybody know what causes it to turn black?
Defective bulb? Or someone else touched with their fingers before I bought it, or it was dropped before? By the way both high and low beam
is still working. Is it ok to leave it there or would it explode and it will be hard to get the broken glass back out later on.
It could be that dust or manufacturing oils got on it and created a slight film that has now burnt on. It could also be that some air got into the bulb during manufacture (I don't know if that model is vacuum or gas filled, but small leaks do sometimes occur in either kind).

If it hasn't exploded yet, it most likely won't. I think you will be fine leaving it in place until it burns out, which most likely won't be any sooner than one that stayed more clear.

To be on the safe side you may want to see if there is a Consumer Information Number listed on the package, and if so give them a call or e-mail.
 

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philtag6000 and Brian, you have be on to something to explain why the 400s burn out so many head light bulbs. Anyone have any guesses, other than those mentioned, why his bulb is turning black? Something getting into the headlight housing while riding?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I have a 04 burgman 400, My left stock bulb HS1 35/35w burnt out after 7 weeks. I was reading the manual that bulbs are not cover under warranty. A new stock one is around $112.(cdn) So I replaced it with 2 H4 35/35w from a Yamaha dealer $19.99 each (cdn)
Burnt out headlight on the 400 is very common.
Some people replace it with a reg H4 60/55w,(almost double the watts) since I don't know much about electrical, I'll just stay with the stock size and I don't do much night riding anyways. I use the high beams during the day time.
 

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Just a thought...would installing a "headlight modulator" on the 400's help? Their advertising say that it "increases bulb life".

Plus using a headlight modulator cuts down on the odds of someone making a left turn into your path and saying "Sorry Officer, I didn't see him". :shock:

I would never have another motorcycle without a modulator. It really made a big difference for me over the years. :)

Reg
 

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I don't see the advantage of a headlight modulator. A modulating brake light makes it more obvious that it's not just a running light.

As someone else on the road - I'm not annoyed by the bikes with headlight modulators like I am with the one's that run with high beams on all the time - but I think it draws drivers attention to "what is this flashing light" instead of "where is that scooter going in relation to my path".

Are there are any statistics about accident rates with/without headlight modulators? Red is a very visible color, yet accident rates are higher in red vehicles. I read a theory that the color red invokes the wrong response to other drivers, and that is part of why emergency vehicles are now coming out painted orange or green more than red. Of course - it could just be that more "fast" drivers buy red cars...
 

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Robert said:
As someone else on the road - I'm not annoyed by the bikes with headlight modulators like I am with the one's that run with high beams on all the time - but I think it draws drivers attention to "what is this flashing light" instead of "where is that scooter going in relation to my path".
I always use my high beams during the day. I would much rather annoy a driver than have them not see me.
 

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I think using high beams on people is a really bad idea. It seems as self defeating as the people that park acrosss 3 parking spaces so they don't get dinged - but they piss someone off and get keyed.
Please don't use your high beams on people anywhere - not day or night.
If they don't see you with low beams on, then high beams won't make a difference. I can't tell you how many times I've had someone come at me with their brights on and aimed high enough to totally blind me to the road.
Maybe you'd like me to start using my Q-Beam light in your face to make sure you see me? You see that as an assanine proposal right? What's the difference between me purposely blinding you, and you purposely blinding me? Doing the high beams at someone is like assaulting them because you reduce their ability to see the road. And sooner or later you're going to have someone "accidentally" bounce you because they couldn't see the road. And by the way - using your high beams in the city limits is against the law, as is aiming a Q-Beam at a driver...
 

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Robert,
You're entitled to your opinion. I'm entitled to disagree. I will continue to use my high beams during the day.
 

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Red is a very visible color
Sorry Robert, red is not a very visible color. It's hue is in the same range as dark blue and green. (Red shows up black at night) Fire Engines that are painted red are 400% more likely to be involved in motor vehicle accidents (check my profile). Also, if I remember correctly, something on the order of 20% of the male population is, or partially, color blind to red. :shock: So while the color of red is pretty, it's not very visible. If you want visible, go to the lighter hues like white or yellow, to name a few. 8)

As far as high beams on during the day, I would find it hard to believe that anyone is going to get blinded during the day with all that bright ambient light around. 8)

I know from many years of personal experience, that headlight modulators do exactly what they are suppose do, that is attract the attention of drivers whose mind are a million miles away from their car. When I approached an intersection, I knew everyone in the facing traffic was looking at me :shock: (probably wondering what the heck that was). My last bike had 100,000 accident-free miles on it because of the headlight modulator and one "very loud" horn (I always drive with my finger on the horn button).

When I get my 2005 Burgy 650 in the Spring, the first money I spend on it will be headlight and taillight modulators. Life is too short to get creamed in an intersection by someone whose mind is the Bahamas!

Reg
 

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Robert said:
I think using high beams on people is a really bad idea. ............... And by the way - using your high beams in the city limits is against the law, as is aiming a Q-Beam at a driver...
I'll have to respectfully disagree that using your highbeams during daylight hours is a bad idea. On-coming high beams are, in my experience, much more visable than most low beams during daylight hours. But, just like at night, you have to use some judgement as to when they should be dimmed.
On most rural Interstate divided highways, it's highly unlikely that on-coming brights during daylight are going to blind anyone. If you're in a situation/location where they may cause a problem, dim them. If you're on a two lane road, dim them for on-coming traffic before you're close enough to be a problem, just like you would at night. Just the act of dimming your lights should get the attention of the on-coming drivers and let them know you're there.
When you're following traffic, run with your low beams because nothing is more irritating than a set of bright headlights in your mirrors - day or night. When you're riding with another person or a group, use your low beams. Let the lead rider run with high beams when appropriate.
As to high beams being against the law within city limits, that's a new one for me. I use my lights just like I try to do on suburban or rural roads - as necessary and with some common sense. Haven't had a problem in almost 50 years. :D
Don
 

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Thanks Don. They were not talking about ever dimming them. If you're not too close to anyone - then they're not going to create any problem. But for the last couple of years several motorcycle magazines have been touting "high beams all the time". I've had too many times where in the middle of the day - a bike (or car) on the other side of an intersection was making it difficult to see the details of the intersection because their lights were on high beam and aimed right at oncoming traffic. That to me makes that intersection more dangerous - not just to the people who's view has been reduced - but to everyone (including the person with the high beams on). Even on my 50cc Yamaha Zuma I won't face or follow traffic with my brights on - and I'll never agree that causing a glare and reducing someone's view will help me. Now if you're talking about cruising along an empty road with your brights on then I'll agree it should be safer because you'll be noticable from a farther distance - but once you're close enough to annoy other drivers you should dim your lights. I figure that if you're close enough to annoy them then the only difference it will make will be negative (reduce their view, reduce their concentration, make them mad at you...).
 

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Robert, I think that you'll find that a headlight on "high beam" with the headlight modulator turned "on" is not as bright as a steady high beam - as the light is fading in and out in intensity.

Also, since our peripheral vision is very sensitive to motion, a motorcycle with a "modulator on" is less likely to get hit broadside in an intersection (ie. someone coming at you through a red light - an extremely common occurance in Victoria) :(

It makes common sense to turn the modulator "off" when following another vehicle so that you don't distract him in the rear view mirror. :shock: But once I am the lead vehicle coming into an intersection - that sucker is going "on"! 8)

Reg
 

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20 years ago for sure, and even 10 years ago, driving with high-beams on during the day was a good way to be seen by other drivers.

But the high-intensity bulbs and focused lens/reflector systems of today have changed that, and it's time for riders to change too.

It is against the law in many places to ride in traffic with high beams on, period.

Modulators are effective, because the brain is keyed to notice changes in the environment more so than unchanging details. While some motorists may be confused by them (the first time I saw one I thought for a moment that it was an oncoming police car), they do grab attention.

They are also completely legal, at least in my state.
 

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The MSF course taught me long ago to ride with high beams and I did for years. However, my father, who works in road construction, gave me a couple of the "OSHA green" T-shirts to try out.

My wife and I did an informal experiment and she said she noticed the shirt before she noticed the headlight. Furthermore, the shirts (or preffered outer garment in this color) can be noticed at any angle while the headlight is only good from the front.

Here is a site that sells the jackets, shirts, reflective vests, and other items in this color. http://www.labsafety.com/store/dept.asp?dept_id=609. Personnally, I find the green more visable than the orange.

Now I wear an OSHA green outer garment and ride with low beams.
 

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On the high beam issue, I did an advanced rider course last year and all the police advanced riders now say that riding with high beam causes other drivers/riders to be unable to judge your distance. This apparently causes accidents because drivers think they have more distance between you and them, ie they cannot tell how far away you are so they pull out on you thinking they are safe.
While riding around I find those riding with high beams on are more difficult to judge the distance of, you get dazzled by them and lose what the distance is, so I would agree.
Another factor is they have stastistics that prove you are more likely to be involved in an accident because of riding with high beams on rather than dipped low beams. Those cagers are just plain stupid, fact.
 

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Brian said:
It is against the law in many places to ride in traffic with high beams on, period.
Another case where laws apparently differ from state to state. I took the MSF course this summer. In Pennsylvania it's state sponsored (in fact, you don't have to pay for it if you're a state resident). In that course, just a few months ago, they encouraged us to run with high beams on during the day.
 

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What MSF instructor is telling people to ride with their high beams on at all times? Was it an off the record comment, because I can't find it in any of their approved curriculum? Are y'all sure that you aren't inserting the "high beams" part? The MSF course teaches to ride with your headlight on at all times - but doesn't say to use your high beams at all times...

See page 26 of either of these MSF brochures:

http://www.msf-usa.org/CurriculumMateri ... k_2004.pdf
http://www.msf-usa.org/downloads/Riding_Tips.pdf
 

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And on & on it goes! There are as many opinions as there are people (even amoung the professionals). :roll:

The reason for using the high beam with a modulator is better coverage, but you'll still get decent results with a modulating low beam (it's the movement that's important). The name of the game is to get driver's attention, and the modulator will do that. So will wearing a garment with the OSHA green color.

The problem is that a motorcycle is a small target, and if it happens to be dark in color, & the driver is wearing dark clothes, then you are living on borrowed time. :(

So, install a headlight modulator, wear bright clothes and drive defensively (especially in intersections).

Reg

Oh, and above all else, enjoy youself! :D
 
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