Brighter Headlight Bulb Suggestions for the 9
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    Default Brighter Headlight Bulb Suggestions for the 9

    Thanks for stopping to read!

    I'm finding the stock headlight bulb to be very lackluster, even with it switched to "bright." I know the owner's manual is very clear about using the same wattage for replacement bulbs. Does anyone have any suggestions for something with more visibility at night than the stock bulb?

    Thanks!

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    Very Active Member FlyingCircus's Avatar
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    https://www.cyclopsadventuresports.c...ulb_p_192.html

    I have it and many others love it as well

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    Quote Originally Posted by FlyingCircus View Post
    https://www.cyclopsadventuresports.c...ulb_p_192.html

    I have it and many others love it as well
    Thanks for the suggestion! Maybe add the extra 10 bucks for the Ultra upgrade that fires all 4 cree LEDs for high beam instead of just 2. Is the install on that fairly hassle free?

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    Very Active Member FlyingCircus's Avatar
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    Very easy. Just have to trim a bit of the boot to fit

    I'd pay the extra. I got mine last year when the 10 first came out and the upgrade wasn't an option but I would have done it. It's very bright and works great with the reflectors in our bezel
    Last edited by FlyingCircus; 03-19-2019 at 10:53 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FlyingCircus View Post
    https://www.cyclopsadventuresports.c...ulb_p_192.html

    I have it and many others love it as well
    2500 lumens each bulb is not that bright. 5600K is still a little on the yellow side. 6000k is the optimum bright white.

    I use HID because I replaced mine before LED became cost effective. My HID is 6000k ... also does not blind any vehicles coming towards me. If you get too bright, you'll get cars flashing their high beams and blinding you.
    Power, looks and style ... nuff said !!

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    I and hundreds of other members installed an HID kit from Rob at A&R motorsports. The cheaper kit is the best in my opinion. Click on the Bang for the Buck thread link in my signature and look under safety. It will be listed there. A brighter light and a Stebel air horn will save your life many times over.
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    Very Active Member FlyingCircus's Avatar
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    I'd have gone HID as well but some were saying if you will lose all light if if it it goes bad

    Sent from my LG-H933 using Tapatalk

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    Quote Originally Posted by rynosback View Post
    I and hundreds of other members installed an HID kit from Rob at A&R motorsports. The cheaper kit is the best in my opinion. Click on the Bang for the Buck thread link in my signature and look under safety. It will be listed there. A brighter light and a Stebel air horn will save your life many times over.
    I bought my HID kit from Rob in 2013 and no issues yet. I still have the spare bulb also.

    JESUS IS LORD! 2008 Candy Max Orange Debeavered, Yana Shiki 2" bones, Grasshopper backrest, V&H Big Shots, Dunlop Elite-3 250 rear, Dunlop D251 150 front, LED brake lights, micro brite rear turn signals, Arlen Ness billet chrome grips, smoothie rear fender, ATRE, Wolo horn, Scorp motor mounts, Gel seat, Chrome M109R derby cover, A&R 6K HID.
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    Very Active Member FlyingCircus's Avatar
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    Revo just came out one that looks pretty nice

    http://www.revo-cycles.com/shop/m109...1800r-vzr1800/

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    Radio Active Member rynosback's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FlyingCircus View Post
    I'd have gone HID as well but some were saying if you will lose all light if if it it goes bad

    Sent from my LG-H933 using Tapatalk
    This is why I say to buy the cheaper kit. It has a regular bulb that does not require the ballast that is used by the low beam. And you get a yellowish light from it. So in my opinion you are more noticeable having two different tempitures coming out of your headlight bucket. The low whiter light being the HID and the high regular being yellowish. It is the contrast that helps in my opinion when using the flash/pass button on and off. Plus having the system that is high low HID, the high beam SUCKS. As the magnet that shifts the bulb makes it look like you are searching for bats in the sky. As well as the bulb is more shielded reducing the light out put on low beam. The high beam SUCKS as it is like having a candle leading your way. But you still have a light. There are just more pros then cons with this kit. Just my observations.
    Last edited by rynosback; 03-22-2019 at 09:50 PM.
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    Radio Active Member rynosback's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BIG MIKE 109R View Post
    I bought my HID kit from Rob in 2013 and no issues yet. I still have the spare bulb also.
    I ran mine for 7 years with no issues until I sold my bike.
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    I'll review all these suggestions, thanks!

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    Quote Originally Posted by FlyingCircus View Post
    Revo just came out one that looks pretty nice

    http://www.revo-cycles.com/shop/m109...1800r-vzr1800/
    I love the 'halo' ring, but the 3 lights in the middle look like an unattractive robot face. When I did my HID I really looked into a halo, but couldn't find an acceptable solution .. hence the halo around the HID. Also ... $380 .. is a bit pricey.
    Power, looks and style ... nuff said !!

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    Very Active Member NoSetFine's Avatar
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    My 2¢...

    1. Cyclops is probably the #1 most referred LED headlight here, probably for a good reason.

    2. I went with a Phillips Ultinon myself just to try it out, also nice. Unfortunately I don't have a Cyclops to compare to.

    3. The REVO / Hoglights LED M109R headlight is now making the rounds on AliExpress... (https://www.aliexpress.com/item/Blac...961495554.html)
    3a. I also can't get past the wacky robot face look though... ha.

    4. A dude on Instagram successfully stuffed a 7" round Daymaker into our trapezoid enclosure. That suggests there are options! (https://www.instagram.com/p/BvEzlQuHjxD/) Pic attached, credit @thunder_lio
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    Quote Originally Posted by NoSetFine View Post
    My 2¢...

    1. Cyclops is probably the #1 most referred LED headlight here, probably for a good reason.

    2. I went with a Phillips Ultinon myself just to try it out, also nice. Unfortunately I don't have a Cyclops to compare to.

    3. The REVO / Hoglights LED M109R headlight is now making the rounds on AliExpress... (https://www.aliexpress.com/item/Blac...961495554.html)
    3a. I also can't get past the wacky robot face look though... ha.

    4. A dude on Instagram successfully stuffed a 7" round Daymaker into our trapezoid enclosure. That suggests there are options! (https://www.instagram.com/p/BvEzlQuHjxD/) Pic attached, credit @thunder_lio
    Click image for larger version. 

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    $400 US is just too rich for me to spend on a headlight. The 7" daymaker mod looks pretty cool! I wonder where he got that.

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    just bought this by a suggestion from others
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    Very Active Member FlyingCircus's Avatar
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    My Cyclops is a lot better than stock halogen. I don't ride much at night due to many animals ie deer, moose etc are rampant where I live and even in a 4 wheeled vehicle a moose will end you. A guy I ride with has the Daymaker on his Harley and my Cyclops is as bright or better than his

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    Quote Originally Posted by FlyingCircus View Post
    My Cyclops is a lot better than stock halogen. I don't ride much at night due to many animals ie deer, moose etc are rampant where I live and even in a 4 wheeled vehicle a moose will end you. A guy I ride with has the Daymaker on his Harley and my Cyclops is as bright or better than his
    Yeah, we have the same issue here in central AB with the deer and moose as well. I don't like riding at night for these reasons as well. The dear have even become a big problem in town.
    Last edited by meierjn; 1 Week Ago at 07:21 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 4fun View Post
    just bought this by a suggestion from others
    Japanese Domestic Market A-Star... they have a switchback 1157 everyone seems to love, let's hope their headlight LED is just as good!
    Good luck, let's hear about it!


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    Quote Originally Posted by FlyingCircus View Post
    My Cyclops is a lot better than stock halogen. I don't ride much at night due to many animals ie deer, moose etc are rampant where I live and even in a 4 wheeled vehicle a moose will end you. A guy I ride with has the Daymaker on his Harley and my Cyclops is as bright or better than his
    ?! No Kidding? Wow. I thought the Daymaker was supposed to be a fairly strong benchmark. Cyclops is *that* good, eh?
    And at 1/10th the price!!
    Iiiinterestinnnng....


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    Quote Originally Posted by asillito View Post
    2500 lumens each bulb is not that bright. 5600K is still a little on the yellow side. 6000k is the optimum bright white.

    I use HID because I replaced mine before LED became cost effective. My HID is 6000k ... also does not blind any vehicles coming towards me. If you get too bright, you'll get cars flashing their high beams and blinding you.
    To clarify a bit, Lumens and Kelvin (k) are two different things. Kelvin doesn’t really have anything to do with brightness, it’s a measure of color temperature. Lumens are the output of the bulb (think of this like power) where kelvin is the perceived color of that output. The best “color” for actual visibility is 4300k which is the closest to the light color of the sun. Granted, slightly greater kelvin ratings look cooler (more of a bright white slightly blue) but the actual usefulness of the light output falls off as kelvin rises. In short, greater lumens mean greater light “power”, greater kelvin changes the color from yellow-ish (low k) to purple (high k) with white somewhere in the middle.
    Last edited by Macd7919; 03-24-2019 at 09:26 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Macd7919 View Post
    To clarify a bit, Lumens and Kelvin (k) are two different things. Kelvin doesn’t really have anything to do with brightness, it’s a measure of color temperature. Lumens are the output of the bulb (think of this like power) where kelvin is the perceived color of that output. The best “color” for actual visibility is 4300k which is the closest to the light color of the sun. Granted, slightly greater kelvin ratings look cooler (more of a bright white slightly blue) but the actual usefulness of the light output falls off as kelvin rises. In short, greater lumens mean greater light “power”, greater kelvin changes the color from yellow-ish (low k) to purple (high k) with white somewhere in the middle.
    Great shout out for Kelvins - thank you for that, a common term I hate seeing misunderstood!
    I'm going to add to that, because "Lumens" is a personal pet peeve - possibly the most abused and misunderstood LED marketing ploy.

    This was the best explanation I have come across explaining the difference between "available" light (lumens) and "usable" light (lux):
    Imagine a shot glass full of "10,000" drops of water. This is Lumens. You have 10,000 of them in the shot glass, and it is overflowing with awesome.
    Now pour that shot glass into a kiddie pool. Same 10,000 Lumens, but your previously overflowing shot glass full of Lumens is now useless. This is Lux.
    If you cannot focus and apply your available Lumens to the road (in this case), then your Lux will be crap regardless of how many millions of Lumens it claims to produce.

    So a light source with a lot of Lumens sounds super sexy, but if you have a crap reflector and a crap lens then you get crap light, which is low Lux - i.e. most dime-a-dozen "Chinavision" AliExpress/eBay/Amazon LED headlight bulbs.


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    Quote Originally Posted by NoSetFine View Post
    Great shout out for Kelvins - thank you for that, a common term I hate seeing misunderstood!
    I'm going to add to that, because "Lumens" is a personal pet peeve - possibly the most abused and misunderstood LED marketing ploy.

    This was the best explanation I have come across explaining the difference between "available" light (lumens) and "usable" light (lux):
    Imagine a shot glass full of "10,000" drops of water. This is Lumens. You have 10,000 of them in the shot glass, and it is overflowing with awesome.
    Now pour that shot glass into a kiddie pool. Same 10,000 Lumens, but your previously overflowing shot glass full of Lumens is now useless. This is Lux.
    If you cannot focus and apply your available Lumens to the road (in this case), then your Lux will be crap regardless of how many millions of Lumens it claims to produce.

    So a light source with a lot of Lumens sounds super sexy, but if you have a crap reflector and a crap lens then you get crap light, which is low Lux - i.e. most dime-a-dozen "Chinavision" AliExpress/eBay/Amazon LED headlight bulbs.
    So what would you suggest as a headlight bulb that gives great "lux" for the 9's headlight style/design?

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    Quote Originally Posted by broger22 View Post
    So what would you suggest as a headlight bulb that gives great "lux" for the 9's headlight style/design?
    It will never be 100% ideal as the headlight bucket of the 109 wasn’t designed for a high powered bulb such as LED or HID so there will be a bit of efficiency lost (focus) in undesired scatter that you wouldn’t notice using a lower powered bulb. Your best bet would be a bulb in which the manufacturer understands the application (installing in a reflector assembly designed for halogen) and takes steps to minimize scattered light such as a shroud placed on the low beam LED to keep as much light out of peoples eyes as possible and proper base spacing (and of course quality components).

    Cyclops typically seems to make a good product that is reliable and has also had some testing done to make the best of things in retrofit applications. It’s not perfect but it’s definately a big improvement over stock. FWIW, they are local (to me) and have always seemed to take care of customers at different events from what I’ve seen (no personal affiliation). Personally, I think going with Cyclops would be a safe bet but there are other reputable companies out there. I would stay away from bulbs on eBay and Amazon that are priced “too good to be true”.
    Last edited by Macd7919; 03-25-2019 at 12:48 AM.

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    Very Active Member JUDAH-9's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Macd7919 View Post
    It will never be 100% ideal as the headlight bucket of the 109 wasn’t designed for a high powered bulb such as LED or HID so there will be a bit of efficiency lost (focus) in undesired scatter that you wouldn’t notice using a lower powered bulb. Your best bet would be a bulb in which the manufacturer understands the application (installing in a reflector assembly designed for halogen) and takes steps to minimize scattered light such as a shroud placed on the low beam LED to keep as much light out of peoples eyes as possible and proper base spacing (and of course quality components).

    Cyclops typically seems to make a good product that is reliable and has also had some testing done to make the best of things in retrofit applications. It’s not perfect but it’s definately a big improvement over stock. FWIW, they are local (to me) and have always seemed to take care of customers at different events from what I’ve seen (no personal affiliation). Personally, I think going with Cyclops would be a safe bet but there are other reputable companies out there. I would stay away from bulbs on eBay and Amazon that are priced “too good to be true”.
    What you stated about the Cyclops may be true. I have no experience with their products, but I’ve heard lots of good reviews. As for LED bulbs on eBay and Amazon, I have an extremely good set in my “Chrushed Chrome” bike that I purchased on eBay for approximately $30. They are of very good quality and design, and as bright as anyone could expect.

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    Very Active Member VzrDean1800's Avatar
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    I had put an LED bulb in my 9 a couple seasons ago (I can't remember the model anymore I do remember it had a very high "lumens" #). When you looked at the bike standing in front of it, the headlight looked blindingly bright. However, when driving at night it was terrible. It's as if the bulb wasn't using all the reflector that surrounds it. Perhaps the led unit wasn't at the correct focal point for our assembly? I ended up going back to halogen, however one of the higher output models, and the light beam at night is again correct and fuller if that makes sense. I've been tempted to try the cyclops because of the positive reviews on here, but because of my last led experience, I just can't bring myself to do it. Up my way there are so many raccoons, deer, etc. Proper night lighting is crucial. Wish I knew somebody local who had the cyclops in a 9 so I could take for a short night ride to see if it infact doesn't suffer from the same effect my last led had.
    Just trying to give anyone considering led headlighting some food for thought. It could have just been the model I had, but it ended up, along with the $70 odd bucks I spent buying it, in the trash.
    Cheers,
    Dean

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    Quote Originally Posted by broger22 View Post
    So what would you suggest as a headlight bulb that gives great "lux" for the 9's headlight style/design?
    Hey broger. (haha I just noticed this NOVELLA I wrote in reply... skip to the BLUE PART for the easy answer...)

    This very challenge is well illustrated by VZRDean's "high lumen / low lux" personal experience and further to what Macd7919 mentioned (whom it seems has either worked in, or studied the same material I have reviewed...

    I will summarize what I learned from studying someone MUCH (much... like Sheldon of Big Bang Theory kind of much more) more skilled than I in the art of engineering of light - Daniel Stern ( https://www.danielsternlighting.com/...lbs/bulbs.html ) - unfortunately he has removed all his Automotive FAQ material for some reason, not sure why, now by request only. Another good source are discussions on CandlePower Forums (http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/forum.php) where Daniel has in the past made regular contributions.

    In short - every bulb is designed for a specific reflector. Our "H4" bulbs have two axial filaments (other bulbs have transverse filaments by design - https://www.danielsternlighting.com/...ulb_types.html) - one filament is exposed 180 degrees for low beam, one is exposed at 360 degrees for high beam. The reflector in our headlight is specifically tuned to expect those filaments in those specific locations in that orientation to properly focus those lumens on the road for maximum lux.

    The main problem with most garbage LED's is they cannot match the radiant pattern of the original incandescent filament - LED's are uncontrolled light sources which throw light in all directions from their mount surface (in the case of SMD's). The Cyclops and Philips Ultinon LED bulbs (and now you can see it in the Chinavision knockoffs) attempt to simulate this incandescent radiation pattern by aligning their LED's to fire in a similar direction as the filaments.

    So... without changing the reflector, you are stuck trying to find a brighter incandescent without frying your electrical harness (more light requires more watts which create more heat on your wires) or an LED with the proper orientation most closely matching an incandescent H4 filament. In my personal reviews, it seems the Cyclops and the Philips Ultinon have done a good job at this. One bonus to the Ultinon is that it is fanless - very difficult to do with a high output LED due to the heat they generate and lower kelvins (technically better illumination for the eye, but doesn't look as "cool" as the "whiter" looking 5k/6k rated sources). Unfortunately, the price on the Philips is a bit insane (although you get two of them... sell one?), explaining why the Cyclops, from user experience alone, seems to be a very good option. Take a look at the Cyclops LED's - you can clearly see the 180 shroud and 360 open LEDs, mounted back-to-back, attempting to simulate the axial filament of the H4 incandescent.

    Good luck with your search.


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    Last edited by NoSetFine; 03-25-2019 at 01:11 PM.


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    Quote Originally Posted by NoSetFine View Post
    Hey broger. (haha I just noticed this NOVELLA I wrote in reply... skip to the BLUE PART for the easy answer...)

    This very challenge is well illustrated by VZRDean's "high lumen / low lux" personal experience and further to what Macd7919 mentioned (whom it seems has either worked in, or studied the same material I have reviewed...

    I will summarize what I learned from studying someone MUCH (much... like Sheldon of Big Bang Theory kind of much more) more skilled than I in the art of engineering of light - Daniel Stern ( https://www.danielsternlighting.com/...lbs/bulbs.html ) - unfortunately he has removed all his Automotive FAQ material for some reason, not sure why, now by request only. Another good source are discussions on CandlePower Forums (http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/forum.php) where Daniel has in the past made regular contributions.

    In short - every bulb is designed for a specific reflector. Our "H4" bulbs have two axial filaments (other bulbs have transverse filaments by design - https://www.danielsternlighting.com/...ulb_types.html) - one filament is exposed 180 degrees for low beam, one is exposed at 360 degrees for high beam. The reflector in our headlight is specifically tuned to expect those filaments in those specific locations in that orientation to properly focus those lumens on the road for maximum lux.

    The main problem with most garbage LED's is they cannot match the radiant pattern of the original incandescent filament - LED's are uncontrolled light sources which throw light in all directions from their mount surface (in the case of SMD's). The Cyclops and Philips Ultinon LED bulbs (and now you can see it in the Chinavision knockoffs) attempt to simulate this incandescent radiation pattern by aligning their LED's to fire in a similar direction as the filaments.

    So... without changing the reflector, you are stuck trying to find a brighter incandescent without frying your electrical harness (more light requires more watts which create more heat on your wires) or an LED with the proper orientation most closely matching an incandescent H4 filament. In my personal reviews, it seems the Cyclops and the Philips Ultinon have done a good job at this. One bonus to the Ultinon is that it is fanless - very difficult to do with a high output LED due to the heat they generate and lower kelvins (technically better illumination for the eye, but doesn't look as "cool" as the "whiter" looking 5k/6k rated sources). Unfortunately, the price on the Philips is a bit insane (although you get two of them... sell one?), explaining why the Cyclops, from user experience alone, seems to be a very good option. Take a look at the Cyclops LED's - you can clearly see the 180 shroud and 360 open LEDs, mounted back-to-back, attempting to simulate the axial filament of the H4 incandescent.

    Good luck with your search.


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    Thank you for the detailed explanation!!

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    Member TexasM109r's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 4fun View Post
    just bought this by a suggestion from others

    What model number is it? Is it plug and play or need modding? I'm also looking for the switchback turn signals. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks

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    Quote Originally Posted by TexasM109r View Post
    What model number is it? Is it plug and play or need modding? I'm also looking for the switchback turn signals. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks
    I would just go with the Cyclops bulb......you will not regret it. (Be sure to check the "Upgrade to Ultra 10.0" box)

    Also pretty sure your front turn signals for 3 prong and not 1157 sockets so you will have to file on the 1157 switch back bulb a bit and sort of rig it into your 3 prong sockets. (Or replace your 3 prongs with 1157 sockets if you want to do it right)

    Link for Cyclops Headlight Bulb
    https://www.cyclopsadventuresports.c...ulb_p_192.html

    Link for Switchback signal bulbs.
    https://www.jdmastar.com/product/109...-Set-of-2.html

    BCS

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