Skip to content

Kat Dash BMW /5 LED upgrade install

2018 June 9
Comments Off on Kat Dash BMW /5 LED upgrade install

I had a wonderful opportunity of installing a Kat Dash /5 LED kit on my customized California blue 1973 R100/5 (yes, it is a /5 with a R100 engine) .

I had the headlight apart already to tighten up the custom key assembly that started turning inside the headlight bucket when I turned the key.

A nice small, tidy box containing the kit arrived in the mail.


The bulbs are labeled nicely in baggies with stickers that indicate the bulb color. I wasn’t sure what the wiring was for and then read the directions and figured it out.

Side note – This bike has the custom key seen here (not a typical /5 nail style key) and LED turn signals that required I wire in resistors to create more  load to activate the turn signal relay.  And, I decided to adapt all the wiring to a /6 style relay board. It all makes sense to me…

But here is what the headlight bucket looked like when I opened it up (spaghetti anybody?).
The gold things are resistors I had that were wired along with the LED turn signals.
One lead of the resister was wired with the positive lead of the turn signal and the other lead of the resistor was wired with the same ground as the turn signal.

R75/5 headlight wiring with /6 Relay board

The Kat Dash kit is pretty easy.
Follow the directions.

BE CAREFUL not to twist the LED’s in the bulb housings too much.  They will come ripped out of the bulb base if you do.

A few things to realize – There are additional wires with resistors added to allow the Generator/Voltage light to activate with the LED bulb.
The same goes for the Turn Signal indicator Light.

I got half way through my install when I hit a major problem – one of the LED lights popped out INTO my speedometer!  Yikes!  This was not any fault of the LEDs.  It had to do with the bulb base being worn/bent too much to hold the bulb in place correctly.  I had to take everything apart, remove the speedometer, and spend about 10 minutes with a tiny magnet until I was able to fish the light out of the speedometer’s rear bulb housing area.

If the bulb sits crooked in the wired base, FIX it before you install it into the speedometer.

With my 4yr old’s fingers to help me with the photo, I was able to fix it with a dental pick and bend that lip out to catch the bulb better, and hold it straight in the housing… and most importantly, not eject the light into the speedometer housing!

I continued my assembly, and to my surprise, after I wired in the relay to allow for the new LED turn signal indicator bulb to work, I no longer needed my big gold resistors in my wiring scheme.
Kat had sold me an electronic turn signal relay that works with LED bulbs and I ended up not needing it.

Here is the bike off:


Bike with the LED running light on:

Bike with the LED lights on – So bright the gamut of the camera could not capture them:

And a video of everything working:

 

1978 BMW R100S Restoration

2017 May 19
Comments Off on 1978 BMW R100S Restoration

A 1978 BMW R100s fixed up and released back into the wild.

This bike is an absolute dream to ride. It runs amazingly smooth.

I had to go through some serious DMV hoops to get the salvaged title status back on the road with a deadline of 5 months until I incurred DMV penalty fees.  I made it to the registration day with 2 days to spare.

I cleaned, restored, replaced, rebuilt whatever it needed to get it back on the road.  The front end is from a spare R90/6 that I had lying around.

 

1978 BMW R100S with R90/6 front end. by Josh Withers 1978 BMW R100S with R90/6 front end.  by Josh Withers 1978 BMW R100S with Oshmo emblem by Josh Withers 1978 BMW R100S with R90/6 front end.  by Josh Withers R100S Straightened in frame jig Powder Coat Steering Race installed Steering Bearings Steering Bearings Assembled front end Forks Rebuild with new fork seals and all the goodies Reinforced rear frame tab for passenger pegs and muffler hangers Powder Coated and Reinforced rear frame tab for passenger pegs and muffler hangers Swing Arm Bearings installed
1978 BMW R100S with R90/6 front end. by Josh Withers

Reinforced Passenger Peg Muffler Hanger tab on BMW motorcycle

2017 May 16
Comments Off on Reinforced Passenger Peg Muffler Hanger tab on BMW motorcycle

This is one of those things I try to do to every BMW motorcycle I rebuild.
This area is cracked on nearly every frame I tear down. It is the rear foot brake area which also is the muffler / silencer hanger, and where the passenger foot pegs attach. This frame is a 1978 BMW R100s. If you are considering rear sets on your bike that attach to this section, then I HIGHLY RECOMMEND doing this procedure.

cracked tab near rear foot brake pivot hole on BMW airhead framecracked tab near rear foot brake pivot hole

cracked tab near rear foot brake pivot hole on BMW airhead frame

New piece of metal to weld onto the old cracked section to reinforce the area making it MUCH stronger and no longer prone to cracking.

Welded metal onto the rear foot brake section of a BMW R100S

Finished powder coated frame with the welded metal. This area is out of sight to most people unless they take the rear tire off.

Finished Bridgestone 175 Hurricane Scrambler photos

2017 February 25
Comments Off on Finished Bridgestone 175 Hurricane Scrambler photos

This bike is a blast to ride. Fast and zippy for a small bike but next to a real motorcycle, you realize how slow you are going! The restoration took about a year. I had help rebuilding the engine and transmission. A friend Adam helped me weld the bump onto the seat. Chrome, powder coat and paint were all locally sourced. Custom YSS shocks. Assembled by me. The only bummer is that I could not find the correct street Bridgestone tires to put on the bike.

Bridgestone175HS jjw 8514c Bridgestone175HS jjw 8525c Bridgestone175HS jjw 8498c Bridgestone175HS jjw 8511InstaDetails Bridgestone175HS jjw 8528InstaDetails
1967 Bridgestone 175HS custom silver frame. Coated pipes. Custom seat, handlebars.

Some great BMW and BSA ephemera from 1969

2016 November 26
Comments Off on Some great BMW and BSA ephemera from 1969

A June, 1969 issue of Cycle magazine arrived in my mailbox today. Either the postman was really late, or somebody knows I’m into this stuff.
🙂

Continental Tires ad with a /2 BMW - 1969

Continental Tires ad with a /2 BMW – 1969

 

BMW ad from June, 1969

BMW ad from June, 1969

 

 

Beeza Babes

Beeza Babes

 

img_2834lr

 

Wheels laced for my upcoming sidecar project

2016 November 13
Comments Off on Wheels laced for my upcoming sidecar project
by Dirty Fingernails
/2 hub with a wide shoulder Akront rim.

/2 hub with a wide shoulder Akront rim.

Bridgestone is coming along…

2016 November 11
Comments Off on Bridgestone is coming along…
1967 Bridgestone 175 HS custom restoration

1967 Bridgestone 175 HS custom restoration

My helper today with my 1967 Bridgestone 175 HS custom restoration

My helper today with my 1967 Bridgestone 175 HS custom restoration