While most cruiser-style motorcycles use a single headlight, an enterprising Honda Rebel owner can break away from the norm by installing a dual headlight system. Inspired by urban streetfighter-styled motorcycles, dual headlights impart an aggressive look to a customised Rebel. Although these lights were once cobbled together from driving lights and hand-fabricated brackets, many aftermarket companies are producing dual headlight kits that easily bolt onto the motorcycle. Some electrical work is required to splice the headlights into the motorcycle's lighting system.
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Things you need
- Phillips screwdriver
- Socket wrench and sockets
- Dual headlight assembly
- Fork-mounted headlight brackets
- Electrical test light
- Wire cutter
- Wire stripper
- Electrical wire
- Heat shrink tubing
- Female spade connectors
- Crimping tool
- Heat gun
Unplug the headlight. Remove the bolt from the bottom right side of the headlight shell using a Phillips screwdriver. Lift the bottom of the headlight's trim ring upward until the entire ring and headlight bulb can be pulled away from the headlight shell. Unplug the electrical connector from the headlight bulb.
Remove the headlight shell from the front forks. Locate the acorn nut that secures the headlight to the bottom of the front fork's lower triple clamp. Remove the acorn nut using a socket wrench. Pull the headlight up and out of the lower triple clamp.
Install the new dual headlight's mounting brackets on each of the front forks' tubes between the upper and lower triple clamp. Adjust the brackets to the desired height on the fork tubes and tighten the mounting screw with a Phillips screwdriver.
Mount the new dual headlight assembly to the front forks. Use a socket wrench to insert and tighten the mounting bolts through the fork-mounted brackets and into the headlight assembly.
Use a test light to determine which wires on the headlight's electrical connector are for the high beam, low beam and ground wire. Typically, the black wire is ground. Mark the wires using a piece of masking tape and a permanent marker.
Cut the connector off of the headlight's wiring using a wire cutter. Strip at least a 1/4-inch of insulation from each wire using a wire stripper. Use a length of wire to measure how much additional wire will be needed to extend the headlight wires to the new dual headlight assembly's bulbs. Cut four individual pieces of wire according to this measurement and strip off a 1/4-inch of insulation from the ends of the wires.
Solder the extension wires to the headlight wiring, attaching two wires to the original headlight ground wire. Gather the wires together, grouping the low-beam wire with one of the ground wires and the high beam-wire with the remaining ground wire. Slip a length of heat shrink tubing over both groups of wires.
Attach female spade connectors to the ends of each wire and crimp them into place using a crimping tool. Shrink the tubing with heat applied from a heat gun. Connect the appropriate wires to the headlight bulbs, slipping the female spade connector over the headlight bulb's prongs.
Turn on the motorcycle's ignition switch and cycle between high and low beam to ensure that the headlight is working properly. Check that all connections are fitted properly if the headlight fails to operate as intended.
Tips and warnings
- Do not attempt this project if you do not feel confident in your ability to alter your motorcycle's electrical and lighting system properly. Instead, seek the help of a trained motorcycle mechanic.
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