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I custom built a motorcycle 12 years ago.  It did pretty good in shows and it won a decent collection of hardware.

The build has been getting a little long in the tooth and I haven't shown the bike in a while.  I decided to do some updating and take it up to Sarasota this Saturday and put it in the show.

I had mounted blue LED strips underneath the faux tank and I thought I'd add some more LED's.  The result was this headlight ring.



Now for the rest of the story...

I was installing it to check for fit and function.  It worked well, but the resistor couldn't handle the power.  No problem.  Change to a 25watt 15ohm resistor.  That worked, but the resistor was still getting fairly warm.  OK, I can fix that.  Screw the aluminum body resistor to the metal inner headlight ring as a heat sink and the problem will be solved.

That's what I was doing when I shorted the thing to ground and blew out all 24 nice blue LED's that I had spent 2 1/2 hours individually soldering into the ring.


Here is plan "B".  Instead of nice, bright 5mm 25ma LEDS we now have the cheesy "fairy light" LED's at 2ma.  Not as nice, but won't start a fire if there is a short...I hope.


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    Posted · Show time

    A Florida man who is a retired fireman?  No.  In addition, the smoke from the fire would leave marks on my nice new custom "brushed on Rusteoleum" white paint.

    I've got about $3000 in the bike.  Painters wanted $3500 to $4000 to paint it.  I'd still have to take it apart and prep it, and then put it back together. 

    Instead, it got a brush job with hardware store paint.  It's not great up close but at 30mph I figure no one will notice.

    If I can keep the judges moving along so they don't dawdle and look too close I might have a shot at a trophy.  It's better than spending $4000 to win a $25 trophy.

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    Posted · Show time

    In the boat world we call say “this is a good 10’ at 10knot finish” or “that’s at good show room finish” for those trailer queens that get waxed everyday. I specialize in 1/4mi@70knot. I always tell folks up front that no one wants to spend the money for a show room finish. No one has argued with me yet. 

    I still think you should make a flaming headlight. That news report would be worth turning the TV on to hear. 

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