View Full Version : headlight

03-11-2010, 10:05 PM
R1200 Rt daytime riding which is best low or high beam?


03-11-2010, 10:06 PM
High Beam will antagonize approaching drivers

03-11-2010, 10:33 PM
R1200 Rt daytime riding which is best low or high beam?


Where do you hail from?

Illegal to use during daylight hours in some states, so curious. :wave

03-12-2010, 01:56 AM
thanks for info i live in fl:)

Na Cl K9
03-12-2010, 02:34 PM
I ride with the high beam on during the day. If / when it burns out I will still have the low beam to use which is then much less problematic for on-coming drivers than being left with only high beam after dark.

03-12-2010, 03:47 PM
thanks for info i live in fl:)

Use this site for Florida laws relating to motorcycles.

Good Luck and enjoy the Sunshine State!


03-13-2010, 02:14 AM
Riding with the high beam on does make you more visible to oncoming traffic. The down side of that is they cannot see your turn signals if you are using them and the glow from high beam make it that they cannot gauge how far away you are or how fast you are going as the light blocks out the rest of your bike from being seen. So, if you don't care enough about your own safety, go ahead and ride with the high beam and be seen but not really seen. The cost of a new bulb is less than the cost of repairs after a crash. Just an observation from a part time professional driver.

03-13-2010, 02:29 AM
On the R1200RT don't all three headlights illuminate when the high beam is on? Or is it different year to year??

I used to run HighBeam and MotoLights, now I just run the Low HIDs

03-13-2010, 02:47 AM
...now I just run the Low HIDs

that's all you need. I was fumbling between the H4 hi beam and the HID low beam this evening just to remind myself of the difference. There's no need for the hi.

03-13-2010, 04:06 AM
On our '95 R, the smallish 5" round head light is near invisible in daylight on low...we added Motolights to help the see me factor. When on similar bikes w/out conspicuity lights, we run the hi beam. On our '02 1150R at least the headlight was enlarged to a 7".
Our 1100S is another smallish light package. When our neighbor is on his 1100S on low beam, he is hard to spot in the mirror. When he puts on the high beam...you can at least see him back there.
We still can see blinkers with the highs on as well. Now a RT,GT or a K12S with all three H7's going in daylight might annoy some as much as modulators. I still think the blinkers are visible on the later models as well...mine are.

You need to either have a buddy/riding spouse ride your bike and come down the street towards you or ride with the same bike near you to see what really is seen by others. You Lone Wolves just need to hang out near the Beemer Shop on a busy day and look for your model...if you can see it coming:laugh

just sayin'...YRMV ...Lights kind of fall into that oil,filters & tires category:wave

03-13-2010, 05:12 AM
I dont know if the size of the light matters as much as its aim. If you think someone is having trouble seeing your headlight in the day time, you may want to raise it. I had this issue on my R when I first got it because the headlight was grossly mis-aimed. Another rider said something to me, we all gathered around the bike and realized it was pointing down at the tire for the most part. Aimed it up more, tightened up the screws and bingo.

03-13-2010, 06:52 AM
Hi ashly12 and all,

In my opinion, criminaldesign and Sit have it - HID low-beam that is aimed correctly beats everything I've ever tried. I have a '04 GSA which is different from your 1200RT, but the principle is the same.

Happy well-lit riding! :thumb

03-15-2010, 01:04 AM
thanks a bunch for info

leaving mon 15th for knoxville tn will be lots of day time riding:)

03-15-2010, 02:00 AM
I rode with my high beam on for 5 years without incident. On June 30, 2007, my wife and I were riding 2 up, just West of Keene, NH. I had decided that day to switch to low beam as a courtesy to other drivers. I had been thinking about my daytime high beam use for some time, and decided it probably wasn't needed. It was 4:00 PM, not a cloud in the sky, and visibility was perfect. A car pulled out from a side road on our right, immediately in front of us, with no warning, and none of the usual tell-tale signs that it might happen. I swerved violently left and almost avoided the accident, but not quite. The car actually hit us. My right hardbag took off her license plate. We were going 50 or 55, which is the speed limit. We were both wearing full gear. I came out OK, having tumbled and rolled 100 feet or so, which I paced off later. My wife is permanently disabled from 26 fractures and a traumatic brain injury. It ended her career, at which she was very successful. The case has yet to be settled, and our lives have been in a state of some uncertainty in the meantime. I won't even attempt to describe the pain, and loss to my wife.

The young lady who hit us is not some uncaring, selfish, or evil person. Quite the reverse, as we have come to know. She was 23 at the time of the accident, and made a mistake: she just didn't see us. As she reported to the officer at the scene, she never saw us until after she hit us.

I will never ride in the daytime again without my high beam on. It annoys some people. In order to be annoyed, they have to see me. I have looked at my bikes from the front with the high beam on, and at a driver's eye level. It is not true that the turn signals are invisible with the high beam on. It is true that the light is very bright. No one has failed to see me since. I also wear a HI-VIZ motorcycle jacket and white helmet.

This is just one incident. Take it for what you feel it is worth.

03-15-2010, 02:24 AM
Yep. High beam all the time during the day for me too. I don't care if it annoys other drivers, Hopefully, that means they see me. Hopefully!!!!

03-15-2010, 03:06 AM
Two lights down low with your headlight do much more than a bright headlight. It makes you look bigger and a triangle of light is odd, and gets people's attention. I run motolights on two of my bikes and HYper light LED market lights on the other.

03-15-2010, 03:10 AM
Two lights down low with your headlight do much more than a bright headlight. It makes you look bigger and a triangle of light is odd, and gets people's attention. I run motolights on two of my bikes and HYper light LED market lights on the other.

It's geometry.. Single point of light there is no way to judge distance from..

Two points of light (car) you see the two lights you instinctively can ballpark distance to the car.

With MotoLights, though the distance between lights isn't known to most, still give you multiple points to judge distance from.

This is especially true at night.

03-15-2010, 06:25 AM
Sometimes I go with just the running lights - eyebrow and turn signals. I can flick the "optical horn" as needed.
Especially at night, some bikes with dual headlights can appear to be a more distant car - the lights are close together as with a distant car.

03-15-2010, 12:29 PM
Being somewhat interested in the subject, I make a point of analyzing what I saw and when I saw it whenever a motorcycle approaches. For me, the two lights down low do absolutely nothing, and the flashers don't do any good either. I see the motorcycle, and then I notice the flashing or the extra lights.

Other than the bright headlights, which I do see at a much farther distance, the only configuration that helps is the lightbars that people put on cruisers, where you have three bright lights in a horizontal line right next to each other. I see those right away, if they're bright, and know exactly what they are.

Riders running with low beams, whether or not they have additional lighting, I often don't see right away, especially in bright, sunny conditions. I don't think headlights on motorcycles add much visibility at all unless they are very bright.

My perception may be different than the average car driver, since motorcycles are a subject of interest to me, and I tend to notice them anyway.

I also happen to believe that the process of seeing and knowing something is there is a lot more complex than just visibility. There's a lot that goes on, or has to go on, between the eye and the consciousness. I think we see things we are programed to see, or are expecting to see, or are threatening to us, more readily than other objects. For example, when was the last time you heard of anyone turning left or pulling out in front of a police motorcycle? I used to ride a big cruiser years ago, and with the hard saddlebags and the big windshield, and the white 3/4 helmet and aviator sunglasses I used to wear, people not only saw me, but really tended to avoid me.

These observations, and the accident that happened to us, make me a believer in bright light, about as bright as I can get it, on a motorcycle during the day. I also aim my headlight straight ahead, and not down a half degree or so as the owner's/service manuals instruct. As I said before, they might not like me, but they know I'm there.

03-15-2010, 09:43 PM
[QUOTE=IAMBOB;560479]On the R1200RT don't all three headlights illuminate when the high beam is on? Or is it different year to year??

Yes, when the high beam of an R1200RT is switched on, all three H-7 bulbs in the headlight are lit, i.e., the two low beams and the one high beam. When the high beam is switched off, the two outer H-7s are lit.