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Discussion Starter #1
I dont know didley about any other bike but mines and was wondering how much heat does your bike's headlight puts out.

Im asking because i was standing in front of mines the other day and when i turned the key the light came on. A few seconds later i start feeling really hot through my shirt. I was standing a good 1.3 FT away from the light but I could feel the heat very well through my shirt.

I then started running lil stupid test to see how far away from the bike i could feel the heat. The heat seems to push out almost instantly.

BTW my headlight is yellow. Do you think this is stock or one of the previous owners put it in there?
 

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Most headlight bulbs are about 55 Watts. Since a bulb is basically a resistor, most of that power (watts) ends up as heat. So, your bulb is putting out about 50 watts of heat. The reflector causes most of the light and heat to be projected directly forward. How hot it feels will decrease with the square of the distance. At 2 feet it will be 4 times less than at 1 foot. Now who says physics isn't useful in real life. :lol
 

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Discussion Starter #4
as long as im not alone its alll good. I was also thinking that maybe a previous driver put the yellow bulb in and it is too strong for my bike.
 

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SnookayDCC said:
as long as im not alone its alll good. I was also thinking that maybe a previous driver put the yellow bulb in and it is too strong for my bike.
Not sure what would be the benefit of a yellow bulb except maybe in fog. Is the bulb yellow or has the reflector/housing yellowed?

In any case, it's not a great idea to put in a higher wattage bulb than stock. The headlight fuses, wiring, bulb socket, etc. may not be able to take 90 watts if designed for 55 watts. You can end up with melted wiring or some other mess. The other issue is heat. 90 watts of heat is a lot more than 55 and could melt or discolor the plastics used in the housing or reflector.

YMMV
 

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a yellow bulb? like the heat lamps at KFC? now why didn't i think of that?
 

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Whom ever said the "reflector" is prolly correct. I worked at a place for years as a Purchasing agent/Materials Manager that made reflectors (for all major manufactures of bikes and cars) and it all depends on the material used. Honda for instance actually uses an 1100 Aluminum which is a very high end material. Manufactures like Suzuki, and Yamaha used a 3002 Aluminum which is a lesser grade, but still throws off some good heat. Kawasaki used about the lowest grade possible. The bulbs would actually leave burn marks on the reflector up to 40 watts. We informed them of this, but they didn't care. The higher the grade of Aluminum, the less heat radiates off the metal. Cheaper grades of metal are better conductors of heat.
 

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japbike said:
Whom ever said the "reflector" is prolly correct. I worked at a place for years as a Purchasing agent/Materials Manager that made reflectors (for all major manufactures of bikes and cars) and it all depends on the material used. Honda for instance actually uses an 1100 Aluminum which is a very high end material. Manufactures like Suzuki, and Yamaha used a 3002 Aluminum which is a lesser grade, but still throws off some good heat. Kawasaki used about the lowest grade possible. The bulbs would actually leave burn marks on the reflector up to 40 watts. We informed them of this, but they didn't care. The higher the grade of Aluminum, the less heat radiates off the metal. Cheaper grades of metal are better conductors of heat.
Er, right idea but a little backwards. If a material is a better reflector (light or heat doesn't matter as they're both waves), it will throw off more of the light and heat coming out of the bulb toward the front of the bike. If another material is a worse reflector, it will absorb more and get hotter given equally efficient reflector designs only differing in material used. This is what causes the discoloration and damage to the reflector. Reflection and absorption are essentially opposites. Higher grade aluminum will polish better making a better reflector and thus absorb less.
 
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