t25torx
t25torx Dork
4/2/18 7:38 a.m.

After being a bit neglectful I finally got motivated to do some work on my old Nighthawk recently. I'm going to go back a bit for a history lesson on the bike. It's a 1992 Honda 750 Nighthawk, I purchased it in Florida and have had it for about 3 years now. It had a jet kit, V&H 4 into 1 exhaust,  and Progressive rear shocks already installed on it, and has been pretty reliable this whole time, except for a bad coil finally after 25 years. Coil options were super expensive OEM replacements, cheap Chinese knockoffs, or some decent looking DynaCoils that would require some modifications to install. I went with the DynaCoils. Installation was a bit tricky, but with a little cut here, a little welding here, and some fun aluminum bracket work later I had them mounted and installed. I still need to get some new plugs, for it, I'm thinking of going to some iridium plugs, so if anyone has switched in something this old and has feedback please chime in.

This latest round of updates comes after the headlight was starting to be noticeably dim at night making it a hazard to be out late. I decided to bite the bullet and buy an LED unit off Amazon, at around $55 it was about as cheap as getting a used headlight bucket and new H4 bulb. Installation was not what I would call an easy process though, so be aware if you're looking to do this type of upgrade yourself. Lets dig in and see what all is involved.

Here's the current light, an H4 bulb inside a plastic lens housing. At some point it looks like the bulb got loose because the plastic is melted on the inside and starting to get brittle and turn yellow and crack in that spot.

Light output is not the best. I think the wig-wag unit that is on the bike is starting to go out, it will be removed at this time.

The Philips head screws that hold the chrome trim ring on were fighting me, so out came the vise grips.

The LED unit has no mounting tabs or screw holds like the unit coming out, so I decided to try and just put the new light into the old housing after removing the old lens. Going this route, I pealed back the 3 tabs holding the chrome trim onto the housing.

Using my heat gun I warmed up the glue around the trim and the plastic lens, allowing me to separate the light into it's three pieces.

Here's the new shiny LED headlight. As you can see there's no real way to mount this into the bike as is. So sticking it into the old housing was really the only way to get this done.

These little protrusions were in the way and keeping the headlight from fitting flush in the old headlight bucket.

So I ground them off with a flap wheel on my angle grinder.

Bet then I ran into another issue. As you can see above, the lip is only a little over 3/16 inch before the housing. But on the old bucket it needs a good 7/16th's inch lip before the housing starts.

After again looking at my options, I decided to just remove the inner bucket since the tabs are spot welded to the outer edge that would leave them in place. I took a few cut off wheels and some time with my Dremel, but I finally had them separated.

And here's the trim ring fitted down over the new bulb. The last step was to slide the trim ring back over the front and bend the 3 retaining tabs back.

Before putting the light back into the bike I dug around in my screw bin and found some torx head screws to use so it wouldn't be as big a paint to remove in the future.

But here it is all back in place. The light pattern looks decent, and it's waaaay brighter, so night riding shouldn't be a guessing game now.

High beam

I need to replace the droopy old turn signals next, and then eventually paint her up. But right now, she's ready to ride agian.

t25torx
t25torx Dork
4/2/18 7:50 a.m.

Oh and I almost forgot. I replaced the completely threadbare old seat cover with a nice shiny new unit. I made sure to use stainless steel staples to keep those from rusting out.

 

Appleseed
Appleseed MegaDork
4/4/18 10:09 p.m.

Nice. 

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