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 Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses

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sonuvabug
Silver Wing Rider
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sonuvabug

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PostSubject: Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses   Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses I_icon_minitimeSun Oct 25, 2020 10:33 am

I'm looking to convert two, square 3 inch auxiliary LED light pods from white to amber lenses.  Amber lens replacements are not available for these sealed pods.

First, does anyone know of a universal amber lens cover that can be mounted over the original white lens housing?

If not, does anyone have first hand experience at doing a white to amber lenses color conversion?

I know there are a number of products out there from paint sprays (Krylon brand I think is one) to using amber laminates you apply over the original white lenses (Lamin-X and 3M Lens repair are two I've seen mentioned).  Not looking for "cheap" ... looking for "right and effective".


Thanks in advance. ~ BugJr ~


Last edited by sonuvabug on Mon Oct 26, 2020 9:13 am; edited 2 times in total
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Meldrew
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PostSubject: Re: Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses   Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses I_icon_minitimeMon Oct 26, 2020 4:33 am

As you're asking for help both on here and another maxi forum, does everyone have to imagine what these 3 inch auxiliary light pods actually look like, or are you going to post a photo.

You didn't mention either if these light pods have 12v bulbs or LED's. As I'm only mildly curious, I'd have thought if you can’t get amber lenses covers, you could swap the clear bulbs for amber 12v bulbs which are easily available. Whether you can get replacement amber LED's if that's what your pods are fitted with I've no idea.
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Cosmic_Jumper
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PostSubject: Re: Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses   Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses I_icon_minitimeSat Nov 07, 2020 8:29 am

sonuvabug wrote:
I'm looking to convert two, square 3 inch auxiliary LED light pods from white to amber lenses.  Amber lens replacements are not available for these sealed pods. [snip]

Hey BugJr, Any update on your amber lens quest?
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sonuvabug
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sonuvabug

Number of posts : 494
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PostSubject: Re: Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses   Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses I_icon_minitimeSat Nov 07, 2020 8:57 am

Thanks for asking Tim ... here's an update.  I've determined there are three methods for converting a white lens into a selective yellow (the technical term) lens colour.  

1) Buy universal yellow/amber covers widely available on eBay, Amazon etc. for the 3" pods I have.  This is a bit of a hit and miss approach unless it is made by the same manufacturer as the light pod itself (not available).

Although there are some standard sizes (i.e. 3 inch), there is no guarentee they will fit my specific light pod shape.  I've read one fella heating the arms  and reshaping them to fit but there again, no fit guarentees in advance.      

2) One can cover the white lenses with yellow film ... the three main brands I discovered are 3M, Kapton and Lamin-X (which seems to be the most commonly preferred brand).  In my research, there are examples of film melting/distorting due to the heat generated by the LED chips and the damaged film then needs to be replaced as needed.  Some recommend changing the film yearly anyway.  Not going to happen for me.

3) Painting the white lenses with multiple thin layers of yellow paint is an option.  The two paint brands most commonly mentiined are Krylon antique glass paint (yellow) and Dupli-Color Metalcast Yellow which is my preference as it is rated up to 500*F.  

However, if either paint application chips due to stones etc., you are into a repair/repaint scenario.  Daniel Stern's website has a good article on selective yellow lenses and he mentions the Dupli-Color product and the Kapton tape. See linky below.     

Daniel Stern's Article

OK, for the actual light pods and mounting them, I fabricated an additional crossbrace to DennisB's light bracket so it can hold 2 smaller pods for daytime conspicuity and fog/inclement weather riding and 2 larger (3") combo spot/driving pods for rural/dark road night riding.  It fits directly on top of DennisB's bracket and I made the holes align for fitment.  It looks crooked in one of the pics but it is not ... it is the tilted wheel that creates that illusion.

The rough fabrication is finished and now I'm fiddling with fit details.  I'm not overly thrilled about the way the light pods look mounted (bulky) but I'm sure this set-up will turn the night into day when I need it to.  

The chrome pods are the ones DennisB mentions in his various posts ... the Optronics QH87CD available from US Walmart stores.  I don't know the exact specs but they are 55w halogen bulbs ... I assume a bright white colour (haven't tried them yet and am only going by what others have written).  People seem happy with them.

I believe the beam pattern is flood which is what I want for these pods.
According to DennisB, you can buy different beam patterned bulb inserts so I'm not worried about what comes out of the box.  I plan on using them with a dimmer ... generally as daytime conspicuity lights (at a lower power level) and then for inclement weather (fog, rain etc.) at higher power as needed.  I will convert the lenses to a selective yellow colour (I understand this will take about 6 thin coats of the Metalcast paint).

The larger, black 3" pods are LED Rider LX40 brand pods and are rated at 4200LM and 5000K each.  That's a lot of light when activated.  I am also thinking of converting these to selective yellow lenses but haven't made up my mind completely about that.  They too will be on a Skene Designs dimmer and separate on/off switch as they will only be used as required and not for everyday, in town riding.   

Even though I am a "form follows function" person, my issue is the different setups I'm playing with look bulky and disproportionate.  A much cleaner look would be to invest in a very good pair of say Clearwater level quality lights (with the optional yellow lens covers) and be done with it.  I refuse to spend over USD$700 to do that ... especially since I already have the above mentioned pair of light pods and obtained them for a fraction of the price of the Clearwater Darlas.

Here are some pics of what I'm playing with.  My cross brace is not finished (final shaping and painting etc. yet to go) and the pods are just loose fitted for illustration purposes.

Dennis B's bracket below:
Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses 20201110

The crossbrace extention I fabricated below:
Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses 20201112

The two sets mounted 3" black pods on top; 2" chrome pods on bottom below:
Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses 20201111

The two sets mounted 2" chrome pods on top, black 3" pods on bottom below:
Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses 20201113

Besides the "oversized" look of the 4 pods which I'm not happy about, I have another issue which relates to suspension travel.  If the chorme pods are mounted above, and the black pods are mounted below (as illustrated in one of the pics), I only have about 5.5 cm of clearance between the bottom of the bigger black pods and the top of the fender at full handlebar lock.

According to the FSM, there is about 11 cm of total suspension travel which means that if I am turning (full lock) and the suspension compresses completely (unlikely unless I am about to crash anyway), the bottom of the closest 3" pod may come in contact with the top of the fender on that side under those conditions.

Mounting the chrome pods below and the black pods above creates about another 1 cm of suspension travle space (6.5 cm) but well short of the 11cm of total travel cited in the FSM. I also don't like this look as much but it makes more sense if the chrome pods are going to be used for conspicuity and for inclement weather situations.

Just another argument for going with a smaller, more powerful set of auxiliary lights (ideally with removable amber fog lens covers) and be done with it.  I could recoup some of my money by selling the chrome (new & never used) and black pods I already have.  However, I am frugal and want to see if I can make the bits I've already assembled work.

All creative and constructive feedback welcome.  Not interested in reading what the oppositionists have to say.


Last edited by sonuvabug on Sat Nov 07, 2020 11:56 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Added pictures)
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sonuvabug
Silver Wing Rider
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sonuvabug

Number of posts : 494
Location : Mid-Western Ontario Canada
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PostSubject: Re: Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses   Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses I_icon_minitimeFri Nov 13, 2020 9:55 am

UPDATE - Of the three choices I outlined above being:

1) universal yellow/amber lens cover;
2) painting the white lenses to a selective yellow colour or;
3) applying a yellow film/laminate over the white lenses ...

... I ended up going with option #1 and not necessarily by choice.  

Painting was my preference but getting my hands on the Dupli-Color Metal Cast Yellow paint (PN#MC202) was next to impossible here in Canada.  Even Sherwin-Williams who make that paint couldn't get me a rattle can of it but that's another story.

Turns out my local NAPA parts dealer had several universal sets of yellow 3" lens covers sitting on the shelf ... and for a number of years from what I gathered.  I could just SWing by (pun intended) and see if they fit the LED light pods I had acquired in my "bundle deal".  

This would save me the trouble of ordering them from Amazon, eBay etc. without taking the unknown fitment risk.  As an added bonus, they only wanted CAD$10 for the pair ... which matched the absolute cheapest price I could find on-line.  Typically they sell for 2-3 times that price plus fees etc.

This morning I SWung by (again pun intended) NAPA and the pics below speak for themselves. The LED pods are larger than I want but for the price I paid, I'm going to hook them up and if they do the job, I will learn to like them.  I'll post some updated pics next Spring once I finish all of the dozen or so of the electrickery and functional upgrades and mods I have planned.

I am going with only the one pair of LED light pods and not the two pictured earlier in this thread.  Having two sets is just too busy looking in my opinion. Using a Skene Designs IQ-275 programmable dimming controller, I can run the one set of LED pods at any, pre-set 10% increment i.e. 10, 20, 40% etc., during the day for added conspicuity and then at 100% when riding pitch black, rural back roads.

With the Skene controller, the light pods are also easily adjusted on the fly as the situation requires i.e. fog, rain etc.

Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses 20201118
Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses 20201119
Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses 20201117
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Mech 1 twa
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PostSubject: Re: Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses   Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses I_icon_minitimeFri Nov 13, 2020 6:16 pm

All creative and constructive feedback welcome. Not interested in reading what the oppositionists have to say.


I like that statement.
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Meldrew
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Meldrew

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PostSubject: Re: Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses   Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses I_icon_minitimeSat Nov 14, 2020 6:17 am

Mech 1 twa wrote:
All creative and constructive feedback welcome.  Not interested in reading what the oppositionists have to say.


I like that statement.  

Maybe you do but it's a forum mate, and aren't you big on the First Amendment, free speech and all the rest of it. Neither of us have to read, give feedback on anything we're not interested in on here. We are however allowed to have an opinion.

I'm not interested in reading jokes, but if they give someone a laugh in these dismal times that's good.


PS As I was typing this Alexa was playing a rather grim Billy Joel song about where you live. Smile
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JamieB
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PostSubject: Re: Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses   Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses I_icon_minitimeSat Nov 14, 2020 9:03 am

Is that light bracket on the wonk?
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sonuvabug
Silver Wing Rider
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sonuvabug

Number of posts : 494
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PostSubject: Re: Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses   Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses I_icon_minitimeSat Nov 14, 2020 9:57 am

JamieB wrote:
Is that light bracket on the wonk?

Hey JamieB, I think you're asking is the light bracket unlevel/mounted crooked?  I don't think so.  My garage floor slopes a little for drainage combined with the front wheel being turned slightly to the right, leaning the scoot left and I believe that is creating the illusion of the bracket being cockeyed.  

I also saw this after I mounted the cross piece extension to DennisB's light bracket.  However, when the scoot is on the centerstand standing straight up with the front wheel centered, all is good.  Also, the light pods are angled differently and have not been road adjusted yet so that may be a contributing factor.

When I take apart the front nose fairing to complete the wiring installation, I'll do a final leveling.  In the end it likely won't make much difference as I usually only use the centerstand when performing maintenance.  However, I appreciate your eye for detail.
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JamieB
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PostSubject: Re: Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses   Converting White Auxiliary Lenses into Amber Lenses I_icon_minitimeSat Nov 14, 2020 10:49 am

Hey, only pulling your leg, looks a good modification.

Was just about to take a trip out but the heavens have opened.
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