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Question Motorcycle conspicuity

NW Jim

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Please let me introduce myself before jumping into my question. My name is Jim living here in the NW for many years. Returned to riding in 2004 while still working commuting 20 miles a day mostly state highway on a 200cc Vespa. Stopped working in 2008 and purchased the Aprilia scarabeo 500ie which I rode up to this past March. (both were great bikes I have been very interested in the DCT for years but seemed to always be doing other things until last fall when I took my turn with the big C so by March when treatment was ending I went to the only dealer I could find with this bike and bought the 2020 model.
While recovering I ordered in most all the accessories I thought I needed which I am Thankful to all on this forum where much of my research was done. My son and I spent a few days riding up in the Olympics in late July (very hot) which of course resulted in me shelfing a couple of accessories and adding new ones.
Recently I came across and read the PDF from the Gov (https://www.nhtsa.gov/sites/nhtsa.gov/files/811507.pdf) regarding Aux lighting (yet another accessory!) which brings me to my question (and yes I can feel your collective sigh of relief)

Are the name brand lights that seem to range from $300~$600 really worth that investment or will the lessor known (typically imported) brands in the $100 range be just as adequate. I really just want to be seen and am not too concerned with lighting up roads across the NW in the middle of the night. We came across a GS on our recent trip that had sets of both white and yellow aux lights and was easily visible from ISS! I don't think I need that much although opinions on color are welcome.
Thanks in advance for any advice
 

IRA

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I like Denali's-I have them on my ctx700-they have a 5 year warranty-which they honored when one of them failed-they replaced it for free (though I did pay to ship it back) I have the D2 fog lights which are connected to my day-time running lights-they are always on-I noticed new options that can be mounted on crash/engine guards-when my wait for a NC is over-that's where I'm looking.
 

melensdad

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FWIW, I have been advocating for Low Mounted Auxiliary lighting for a few years. The PDF link you provided seems to agree with me!

I have Denali DRL lights installed. They are a wide beam (180 degrees up/down + 180 degrees left/right) that is designed for being seen, rather than for illuminating the roadway. The lights are installed on my fork. As they come from the factory they are switchable High/Low beam. After playing with them and experimenting, mine are wired into the ignition to stay on High beam 100% of the time. They are not blinding if I ride behind someone or if I ride toward someone at night, largely because of the excellent lenses on the lights and the ultra wide beam spread. I found no other light that does what these do. They illuminate my front wheel/tire at night and under even bright sunlight conditions they are visible from the SIDE and from the FRONT.

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And while you didn't ask, I also have extra lights on the rear. I ordered some inexpensive chinese dual function Amber/Red lights that I stuck onto my side cases. It said they were ultra-bright. Well let me tell you that their definition of ultra-bright and mine are very different. They can be easily seen at dusk or at night. They are OK on a cloudy day. But under bright sunlight they are close to worthless. So I'd have to say that the fairly pricy Denali lights I put up front were worth the extra money I invested but the cheap china imports were not quite the bargain.

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dduelin

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Speaking directly to the question I do not think premium priced lights in the $300 - $600 range offer greater visibility than similar sized lights in the $100 - $200 range. The brand names aren't worth the extra money. IMO of course but I have comparative experience on my own bikes. My 2013 NC has premium Denali D2s installed on the Honda accessory light bar and compared to similar size and build less expensive LED lights purchased for my 2015 NC and several other bikes of mine they offer no visible difference. The small 2" single emitter LED lights offered by various vendors are very bright white and are very conspicious in day and night use. They are not meant to light up the road with narrow angle spot beams but rather throw a wide angle of light that doesn't blind oncoming drivers at night. Some come with a yellow fog lens that can be swapped for clear lenses. I wire mine through switched power and on-off switches so I can turn them off if I want but they are not controlled by high or low beams.
 
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Rabbit

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The DRL Denali lights come in Amber as well. I tied mine into the auxiliary sub-harnesses on all the time 100%. Now I just have to put it all back together…
 

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Wedders

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I had Denali lights on my Ducati and undoubtedly they are great lights but expensive. I now use some cheaper Chinese ones from Ali Express. Check them out they have quite a selection.

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melensdad

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The DRL Denali lights come in Amber as well. I tied mine into the auxiliary sub-harnesses on all the time 100%. Now I just have to put it all back together…
Good point on the Amber as some prefer that to white.

They also make a new smaller module. I'm seriously thinking of adding the Denali T3 dual color modules this winter. My thought it they would be great on hand guards. Being dual color they will operate as WHITE running lights and then switch to AMBER for turn signals. I've been toying with this idea for quite a while. Barkbuster used to offer a similar light, as does AdMore. I don't have hand guards and honestly the only reason I'd consider putting them on is just as mounting point for the lights.

I think this would be a great addition to the fork mounted DRL lights from Denali.


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GregT

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Hello Jim: Welcome. I've had Clearwaters and Denalis on my bikes for years, and they are quality products. For visibility purposes, I find the bright yellow yellow lenses (as opposed to amber or white) the most effective. I also have Skene P3 lights on my license plates. They are also very visible, and offer multiple brightness and flashing pattern modes.
 

GregC

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I couldn't justify the price of the Denali's and for sure not the Clearwaters. I went with some generic LEDs from Amazon, bought some brackets for them (also Amazon), and a Skene controller (so it works with my headlight switch to go hi or low, with low being whatever % I want).

here the details with links to the stuff I bought and some photos of the lights installed: https://www.nc700-forum.com/threads/led-spot-lights.13436/post-191837

I've since replaced my headlight bulb with an LED so the "triangle" is all bright white light.
 

NW Jim

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Thank You everyone for all the great advice and links. For what I thought was a simple accessory is suddenly challenging because of so many options. I suppose with any luck, by the time I make my decision and complete the installation maybe, just maybe Seat Concepts will finally deliver my new seat!
 
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