The Duke 390 comes with a stock Headlamp that consumes 55 watts of current at low beam and 60 watts at High beam. That is shit loads of power consumption with a not so very satisfactory result when it comes to brightness. Then came to my head, the idea of using auxiliary LED lights for my trip to Himachal. I hardly tour at night but if I did, I wanted something that was more effective and confidence inspiring when it came to illuminating the road. Trust me, you don’t want to hit a pothole at high speed and bend your rim, it’s a disgusting feeling! I wanted to install the LEDs because they’re brighter than the low beam of the stock headlamp and secondly, it consumes way less power than the stock headlight (considering the rate at which the stator coil burns out on the Duke 390).
I was confused about choosing the lights as there are a lot of options available on the ebay India. I initially went for the 24 watts LED light that holds an array of 6 Leds and was cheaper but the 10 watt spot leds somehow seemed better so I ordered the cute pair for 3300 INR but I think they’re much cheaper now and it took them 5 days to arrive from Navi Mumbai to Bangalore! Blue dart sucks big time nowadays so in case you’re buying these, just ask the seller to send it over through a different courier company. I was so excited that I forgot the lights needed a fabricated mount to fit them onto the Duke of KTM. When they arrived, I took them over to my trusted Motorcycle mechanic who killed my excitement by telling me they could be fitted only the next day and made notes of measurements needed to fabricate the mount. We decided to bolt the mount just below the headlight as that seemed most appropriate. The next part was fixing the lights onto the mount post which, wires from the lights were connected to the accessories cable provided right behind the headlight. This cable is left there by KTM to connect things like charger, cigarette lighter, aux lamps, etc. Hence, don’t worry about your motorcycle’s warranty lapsing if you’ve connected something to it. I know there are KTM technicians at certain places who don’t agree to replace faulty parts under warranty because you’ve used the accessories cable to connect something. Well, that’s just their tactic to avoid replacing older parts with new ones, it saves them a lot of cost. I’ve seen cunning technicians who take riders for a ride if they aren’t aware enough and many a times, riders end up paying for things they’re not supposed to pay for. If you did face such a PIA Technician (pain in the arse), just bully the hell out of him and talk about escalating the issue and he’ll do what he’s required to do. The other wire was connected to a switch that was Housed on the handlebar using plastic strips.
With all that done, I was ready to beam through the roads like a drone. The LEDs emit white light, don’t be surprised if one’s color tone is slightly different from the other, that is how it is. In the city and around it, I don’t even use the stock headlight anymore and the brightness from the LEDs is sufficient. The lights are a good revenge weapon as well in case you encounter a high beam mofo coming at you from the opposite direction 🙂
On my trip, the lights were useful during daytime as DRLs and late evening visibility too seemed better. The LEDs go well with the look of the motorcycle and for that price, I think the deal was worth it. There is a small niggle though when things around get too dark. At night, if you’re in a hurry in the middle of a black highway and wish to do speeds of 110 kmph and above, then these lights need to be compounded with the high beam for optimum visibility and that combo consumes a whopping 80 watts of current in total (20 watts + 60 watts from high beam). But, I’m sure that combination is way more confidence inspiring which, for any rider is of utmost priority. I faced the exact scenario when I got late in reaching Jaipur from Chandigarh.
All in all, if you’re not very happy with the stock headlamp and wish to add a bit of pop to your motorcycle, get these!
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