Thursday, November 4, 2010

motorcycle tales

i received a package recently that was sent from thailand with very unreadable markings on it. i was scared for a second then i realized i had purchased some flush mount turn signals from a company called, and it turns out they are located in thailand and ship direct. so here's the blog story documenting my first attempt at modding my bike with aftermarket products.

near the end of summer (september) i was riding down broadway and had a small accident. it was basically caused by the lack of paving on prospect which was a huge mess at that time, a little girl on a tricycle crossing the road, and a left turn. i remember thinking this is a typical accident situation, when my eyes met hers, then her dad's eyes, and i knew i had to stop and risk the skid. my back wheel slid out and i remember looking sideways at the road and my bike handle bars, and thinking SHIT my light broke off.

after the father helped me pick up my bike i rode off again after taking some pictures...but those are pretty useless so i never did anything with them. my knee kind of hurt and had a small scrape through the jeans, but my shoulder and arm were perfectly fine. i didn't even notice that the armored jacket had gotten scratched up until later...thank goodness for shoulder pads.

so i took the opportunity to replace my turn signals with flush mounts, which i feel might look better, and definitely won't snap off next time i take a fall. they came a few weeks after i ordered them, with everything except instructions.

then i had to search around to figure out how to install them. fortunately, keithinasia is a very popular seller and provider of kawasaki ninja 250 lights, and there are many forums where people have complete instructions on how to install his flush mounts. so the only thing i could do was go in, and try to pull out the lights.

the light fixture itself was attached by a few screws which came out easily. the wiring kind of plugged into another pair of wires that were inside the motorcycle frame and harder to get to, but they were pretty easy to pop out of the connector. however, i found out that the original bulb does not fit inside the flush mount enclosure - it was a 1073 bulb, and i had to go to advance autoparts to buy a similar but smaller bulb (1003). however, later i plugged it in and it works just as well, and is bright enough.

i would use the old fixture's wire connectors by cutting them off and soldering it to the wires on the flush mount fixture. i plugged everything in and hooked it back into the motorcycle and the turn signals seem to work fine. the next step would be to actually cut the fairing on the motorcycle so the back of the flush mount fits...because if the front is flush, all the crap sticks out the back. that's to come later.

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